Busch Gardens Williamsburg
SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment
General Park News - (7/10/15) The local news has posted a report from a guest claiming that their shoulder straps came loose on Tempesto at Busch Gardens Williamsburg. While this may be cause of concern on most other rides, what the "general public" doesn't know is that Tempesto's shoulder straps are actually not part of the safety system for Tempesto, but rather were an addition added to the ride at the park's request "for guest comfort, not safety."
All the other clones of Tempesto that Premier Rides, the coaster manufacture, has built to date only have lap-bar restraints and not shoulder straps. The way the belt is installed, from what I'm told, a guest can press the release button in mid-ride and find themselves in the same situation... but they are still 100% safely locked in as it is the lap-bar and not the shoulder straps that are really the thing holding the riders in. Given that the release button is attached to the lap-bar next to the big red grip area, it is easy to see how a guest might accentually cause this to happen in the middle of the ride, especially if they are scared and clawing away to get a better grip. So far the park has not indicated that they are looking to change the way the restraint works yet.
In other news, you can see a photo of the 4D photo op set up outside Curse of DarKastle at ParkFans, which includes a three-dimensional roller coaster car with seats sitting on top of a huge artwork background placed flat on the ground.
Howl-O-Scream 2015 - (8/5/15) I'm told that the focus of Howl-O-Scream in Williamsburg may be returning to actual Haunts and not so much on the shows this year, which is good news as mentioned by BGWFans last month. Now the mazes are starting to leak out, such as the layout for a project codenamed as the "Woods Maze" that will be behind behind the old Drachen Fire site.
They followed this with basic leaks for all seven of the park's expected haunts in this week's update. HOS will have four haunts return (Bitten, Catacombs, Cut Throat Cove and Deadline) along with code-names for three new haunts: Cornered (in employee parking between Festhaus and DarKastle), Lumberhack / Woods Maze (between Verbolten, Festhaus and the Railroad) and Scarlett's Revenge (inside the Europe in the Air attraction building).
(6/18/15) The Howl-O-Scream website for Busch Gardens Williamsburg has been updated with the new event theme for this year, "Unearthed", along with a story about how park maintenance crews were stopped in their tracks when they hit upon a mysterious object while digging in a back area of the park. Curious to know what exactly they have Unearthed? So am I.
Returning haunts include Bitten, Catacombs, Cut Throat Cove and Deadline, with new 2015 haunt information still to come.
2016 - New Show and More - (9/18/15) Busch Gardens Williamsburg has announced their 2016 plans… and while there wont be a new ride, the park is planning on adding a new restaurant, a craft beer facility in Das Festhaus and a new show. Look for the current Ristorante della Piazza restaurant to be transformed into an all new Italian restaurant experience themed to Marco Polo and his adventures. Next summer look for a new after-dark show experience to take place at the Royal Palace Theater. For more details visit our friends over at CoasterChitChat.
???? - Water Country USA Expansion - Planning - (11/22/11) The expansion plan proposed by Water Country USA was given unanimous approval from the local Board of Supervisors. No timeline was given as to how the expansion will take place, other than it will be done over five phases.
(10/14/11) BGWFans has posted a nice map showing off the new proposed master plan for Water Country USA over the next decade.
(10/12/11) The local news reports that Water Country USA has filed paperwork seeking to expand the waterpark’s size by 43 acres, in addition to the park’s current 41 acres of attractions. Keep in mind, this is for a new overall master plan for the entire park site that will shape everything that is to come over the next decade or two and not a plan for one giant expansion that will happen over the next year or two.