Busch Gardens provides thrills (and chills)

 Reviewed by Holly Bouldin
Times-News correspondent

 WILLIAMSBURG, Va. — “Welcome to the dark side of the gardens” — a deep and chilling voice could be heard saying throughout Busch Gardens, reminding guests that at 6 p.m., the park would transform into an oasis of terror.

Busch Gardens' Howl-O-Scream is over this year, but check it out next year. / Photo by Holly Bouldin, Times-News correspondent

Each fall, Busch Gardens gets in the spirit (pun intended) of Halloween with its annual Halloween event, Howl-O-Scream. Busch Gardens celebrated its 13th season of Howl-O-Scream and although it’s over; don’t forget about it next year when planning your Halloween events.

Howl-O-Scream made sure that no one who remained inside the park is safe from a good scare. Busch Gardens designated five unique “scare zones” along the park’s paths.

Even if one decided not to brave the haunted houses, they were still the subjects of a few scare tactics. They were confronted by creepy clowns, chased by werewolves, or stalked by sinister scarecrows.

Besides the haunted attractions, park visitors could also satisfy their desire for distress by riding the park’s collection of thrill rides and roller coasters at night.

Griffon, the world’s first floorless dive machine, provided a one-of-a-kind experience for night riders. Passengers were taken up 205 feet and dangled over the edge of the track for three seconds before plunging straight down at 71 mph.

From the top of the coaster, riders could hear screams and shrieks from around the park and see all the dim lighting, fog and props that made Howl-O-Scream such a horrifying event. Other Busch Gardens favorites such as Apollo’s Chariot, Loch Ness Monster and Alpengeist were also open during Howl-O-Scream.

The amusement park is currently closed, but Busch Gardens will open its Christmas Town event starting Nov. 25. For more details, visit christmastown.com. For more information on Busch Gardens, visit buschgardens.com.

 Holly Bouldin is a sophomore at Alamance Community College and a Teens & Twenties writer.




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