After all the insanity going on down in Tampa, Busch Gardens in Williamsburg Virginia has finally announced their Howl-O-Scream 2013 line up! I have to admit, it looks pretty insane. They've really taken requests for more themed areas to another level with some of the new areas. Starting on September 13, 2013 Busch Gardens Williamsburg will open for their 15th Halloween season and we've got the information about what's new straight from the park's press release!
4 New "Terror-tories" now divide the park, while having a unique theme that flows with the country in question. Each theme seems to fit very well into the darker side of the counties history, adding a delightful change from the normal expectations. With this we'll see one new haunted house as well new 'bar' areas and the themed countries. Let's take a look at the various changes to the line up..
"Ports of Skull™ (Italy): The Jolly Roger has risen over a ship graveyard filled with lost souls doomed to haunt the vessels they once sailed. Chart your course through Cut Throat Cove™ or cozy up to the Pirate Baarrrgh™ for a swill ‘o the grog, but keep a weather eye open or you may find yourself keel-hauled by cut-throat buccaneers."
Cut Throat Cove™: Heed the warning: Abandon hope all ye who enter. Cut Throat Cove™ is the haven for bloodthirsty, dangerous rogues – where the scurvy dogs, buccaneers and scoundrels go for shelter. Proceed with caution. Alas, something has gone terribly wrong. Within this macabre market, the pirates have been slaughtered and mutiny is afoot. The way out lies with the buried treasure and the blood-curdling screams you hear just might be your own.
Italy will also feature a new dining area this season.
Buccaneer Galley: Arrgh matey! The galley cooks have prepared a buffet fit for a buccaneer. Join the lovely hostess as she and her cutthroat crew serves up a captain's feast – pirate buffet-style.
Returning to the Italy area around Pompeii we'll find the excellently themed and perfectly atmospheric house "Dead Line" again this season.
Dead Line: Deep underground, construction of the newest line of the Pompeii Metro was moving smoothly until an ancient pipe was accidentally struck. At first, it seemed like steam. Then the mist became thicker, more sinister. Now the strange gas is leaking quickly, and everyone trapped inside is infected. The difficult decision was made to cut off all communication to the outside world. The Dead Line is off the grid.
The next more notable change is happening in the England, which is the opening 'land' of the park. In the past this area hasn't been themed but that changes this year as they take a page out of London's darker history. While England won't see it's own haunted house this season, it's lovely to see this area finally themed.
Ripper Row® (England): Things are looking a bit unsettling in England; a murderer is on the loose plucking unsuspecting victims from the city streets to satisfy his grizzly curiosity. No one knows what Jack the Ripper looks like or who he will strike next. Authorities hunt furiously among the crowds in search of the killer nabbing anyone who looks at all suspicious. Keep your head down and your wits about you or you might not make it out alive.
Next we come to France, which in the past has always featured the "plague" area around their featured haunted house. However, that theme is changing slightly this year with a rather demonic presence.
Demon Street™ (France): Paris is burning. Can you escape before the city is engulfed in flame? Let the smoldering ruins light your way, but beware, fiery fiends lurk around every corner ready to put you on the coals. The smell of a burning inferno fills the air and rumor has it unsuspecting souls will be roasted on a spit. It’s about to get very hot in Paris, stay cool or you may find yourself going up in smoke.
The Haunted House in France is "Catacombs" which is returning for last year. Personally, I don't mind this one bit as it's one of the best themed houses I've seen in a long time. This works even better since France is rather famous for it's catacombs.
Catacombs: Through a ruined cemetery filled with statues lies a tunnel that leads to an underground city. Its history is more terrifying than that of France’s worst revolutions. Deep within these tunnels lie mile after mile of bones—the final resting place for those who are buried here. But all is not as quiet as it appears. As guests venture forth into the dank, dripping corridors of rat infested remains, the voices of the dead begin to speak, and some have taken shape.
This season France will also see a new Bar area added.
Demon Drinks: On Demon Street™, everything is sizzling. Join the club, beat the heat and throw back a cold one. The Demon Drinks’ DJ and his too-hot-to-handle hosts are happy to serve guests as they fan the flames of fun.
Moving onto Germany, the Vampire theme has returned again this season with an upgrade. Gemrany has added in a full theme for the area as well as their haunted house and bar.
Vampire Point™ (Germany): Even vampires need a vacation once in a while and Vampire Point™ is the perfect destination for bloodsuckers. Watch your step and your neck or you might end up the main course. Dawn is hours away, your last salvation lies in escaping the vampire village before the inhabitants sink their fangs into you.
The Haunted House Bitten has returned again this season with it's Vampire theme more reenforced.
Bitten: Suspicion, darkness and mind-numbing fear surround the “Bitten” house which is set in Eastern Europe in the late 1800s. Full of legends and lore of vampires and the undead that preyed on the innocent, this manor sits by the road upon which all travelers must pass but few return.
Another new addition to this area is themed dining. This has long been lacking and it's nice to see Busch Gardens getting into the spirit of things.
Blood Banquet™: Visit Count Vlad’s hotel and meet a variety of paranormal characters for an all-new interactive dining experience. This one-of-a-kind spooky atmosphere paired with unexpected twists and turns offers guests the chance to sink their teeth into a whole new way of dining. With an eclectic menu, haunting music and an atmosphere to die for, Blood Banquet™ is otherworldly.
The areas premier bar, Open Casket returns again.
Open CASKet™: The dead are alive and so is the fun at the Open CASKet™ bar. Hang around, watch your neck and toss back a specialty libation served by the coolest vampires this side of the Rhine River.
Ireland seems to be the only country which isn't receving an overall theme this season but that's fine. Ireland is sticking with their "Monsters" theme which works amazingly well for the area. Back again this season we'll see some old favorites.
For adult libations not only do we have the pub but also the Inoculation Station.
Inoculation Station: No appointments necessary for the shot of a lifetime with your favorite fiends in pink. Get your prescription filled – the famous test tube shot and photo op are always in stock.
Returning this season is the areas haunted house "13: Your Numbers Up".
13: Your Number’s Up: For 13 long years, the dark tower was locked away from the world—existing only in the nightmares of those who had dared to experience Howl-O-Scream’s first and most terrifying maze. But now the seal has been broken. The tower is open once more and on the 13th floor, your darkest phobias and fears lurk in the shadows. Are you brave enough to face them or is your number up?
Also we'll see the stage show "Fiends" return for another season. Who doesn't love singing and dancing monsters?!
Fiends: The wacky doctor and his manic nurses are creating the ultimate Fiend, and there’s not a bad seat in the lab. The voltage is high, and so is the fun as they sing, dance and bring you along on the operation of a lifetime.