Tag: Busch Gardens

New Things to Eat and Experience at the 2017 Busch Gardens Food & Wine Festival!

Can you believe it’s already been a year since the last food & wine festival at Busch Gardens?

Funny thing is, during the off season, it feels like it’s taking seventeen years, but once it’s here I can’t believe it got here so fast. And I couldn’t be happier! Next to Howl-O-Scream, this is my absolute favorite time of year to be at Busch Gardens, and there’s always something new to try!

Along with a ton of my favorites they brought back this year (and some that sadly went away- RIP France kiosk) like the Caribbean kiosk (FRITTERS ARE LIFE), the Cheddar & Lager chowder in Canada, and the empanadas in Spain, there are new places to stop and snack.

SO, in addition to Caribbean, Canada, Spain, Ireland, Virginia, Hawaii, French Quarter, Germany, and the American Southwest, here are the new additions this year (you can also check out my roundup from last year for more yummy pictures & reviews):



I have a new love of Indian food (I’m a late bloomer, what can I say?) so I was really excited to try the fare at this beautiful new kiosk

You can smell the spices wafting through Oktoberfest as you enter the area. A mix of cardamom and curry- you’ll want to order one of everything on the menu, and here’s what they offer:

Spiced yogurt-marinated chicken with cardamom ginger rice & cucumber raita

Full of flavor, but still safe enough for even a picky eater (like my 7 year old).

Indian savory pastry filled with curried potatoes and peas with mango chutney

Now, they don’t look like much, but these soft little pockets pack a punch and have a sweet dipping sauce to cool it down a bit. Great for a quick spicy snack!

Garbanzo beans, sweet peas, and potatoes stewed in coconut milk with curry spice

Easily my favorite from this kiosk. Tons of flavor, but not overpowering for anyone who isn’t adventurous, and the portion size is great for the price. A vegetarian option!

Mango & coconut snowballs

I LOVE mango, but I’m not a fan of coconut. Still, these were really good! Chilled, perfect for a hot day, and not too heavy. My kids inhaled them. I’m honestly lucky I got a bite at all.

To drink, there is a Mango Mint Lassi (alcoholic) which tastes like a milky smoothie, and a Masala Chai Iced Tea, which was really refreshing!

All-in-all, a really great addition to the Food & Wine festival!


The Greece stand got a makeover and is now The Mediterranean, with a kick-ass Lamb slider (seriously, get it).

FOR THE ADULTS, and I KNOW you’re out there wondering- is there anything just for me?

UMMM YES. I’m not a wine, or a beer drinker, so the adult beverages for me have always been slim-pickins, and beer flights & wine tastings aren’t really for me, but Busch is on top of it. They now have an entire stand of frozen mixed drinks!

At I(ce)lands Freeze, you can choose from drinks like a Pina Colada, Rum Runner, Mojito, Strawberry Daquiri, and more!
I got the Rum Runner, and it was yummy!



I feel kinda like a game show host right now.

Another new addition for the adults out there looking for a more private, fine-dining experience, you should seriously look into the Pairings of Note experience. This takes place in Castle o Sullivan in Ireland. You get to sit down with wine ambassadors who will serve you six sample sized plates along with paired wines for each while a live band plays.

Check out these pretty little dishes:


Once you’re done, you can even purchase a bottle of wine to enjoy around the park for the rest of your day (or to take home).
The Pairings of Note experience can be purchased separately from park admission at Guest Services for $50 per person. Definitely a date-night event!

For ALL the info, including prices on Sampler passes (the best value if you ask me), you can check out the official Busch Gardens’ Website.

The Food & Wine Festival runs every Friday, Sat, & Sun through July 2nd.

Posted on June 2, 2017 by Holdin' Holden 0 Comment

Busch Gardens Williamsburg Family Concert Series Ticket GIVEAWAY!

Yep, if you’re been keeping track, this is my THIRD Busch Gardens family giveaway in the past few weeks, and I’m not gonna lie, this one is sort of my favorite.

If you know anything about me (and you might not if it’s your first time here) it’s that I am OBSESSED with Disney. Not just the place, but the movies, and the shows. This means that I absolutely watch Disney Channel after my kids go to bed, and that is why this Kidsiderate Concert is so exciting- because the Teen Stars Live, an interactive entertainment show that includes fun pranks, crowd interaction, music, comedy, and encourages the audience to get up and have fun, stars actors from both Disney and Nickelodeon!

Calum Worthy, who plays “Dez” from the show Austin & Ally; Karan Brar, also known as ”Ravi” from Jessie; Trinitee Stokes, who plays “Judy” from KC Undercover; and Brec Bassinger, who stars as “Bella” from the show Bella and the Bulldogs will all be there, so if your kid is a fan of any of these shows (or all of them) this is the perfect fun concert to take them to!

There are 4 showtimes over two days:
May 20: 11:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.
May 21: 11:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m


And here is what I’m giving away to one lucky family!

Four (4) Busch Gardens Williamsburg single-day tickets.
2. One (1) Parking pass
3. Reserved seating to Teen Stars Live on May 20 OR May 21
IF you don’t win, and you’re still interested in attending, no problem! The concert is free with general park admission. Make sure to arrive early and claim your free ticket at Guest Relations at the front of the park. They will distribute tickets on a first come, first serve basis until there are no tickets left. You can upgrade your seating to the reserved seating for a fee, otherwise, you’ll also want to make sure to get to the theater early to grab the best seats.

Now, onto the good stuff! HOW to enter: Leave a comment below and tell me which of these stars your kid would be the most excited to see?

Winner will be drawn THIS Thursday morning, May 18th, please keep a close eye on the email box associated with your entry (and make sure you register your comment with your email address) and respond ASAP (by Friday morning), or a new winner will need to be drawn.


Good luck!

Posted on May 15, 2017 by Holdin' Holden 36 Comments

KIDZ Bop Kids at Busch Gardens- WIN a Family 4 Pack of Tickets, a Meet & Greet & more!

Guess what? I’ve got yet ANOTHER Busch Gardens Williamsburg giveaway for all of you!

If you haven’t heard of Kidz Bop, you’ve probably been living under a rock. They are a group of talented kids who sing covers of the most popular songs on the radio. They are the #1 brand for kids music on the radio, and, I have to admit, pretty dang adorable.



I’ve got a little one who begged me all last season to go when they came to Busch Gardens because they listen to them in school when they have class celebrations and field days, but we just couldn’t make it happen. This is why I’m so excited to make it happen for one of you, and your little one/s!

They are coming to Busch Gardens Williamsburg THIS weekend, part of the Kidsiderate Concert Series– a concert series geared toward families with little kids (that won’t make your ears bleed–such fun acts they bring!)



Are your wee ones pumped yet?

Here’s what I’m giving away:

-A Family 4-pack of tickets to Busch Gardens Williamsburg

-1 Parking pass

-Reserved seating to KIDZ Bop Kids on May 13th (THIS Saturday!)

-A meet & greet with the KIDZ Bop Kids!


HOW do you enter to win? Leave me a comment below telling me what your little one’s FAVORITE KIDZ Bop song is!

The winner will be drawn THIS Thursday May 11th, so be sure to keep an eye on your e-mail because you will need to respond ASAP in order to get set up for this weekend!



Good luck!

Posted on May 9, 2017 by Holdin' Holden 29 Comments

Busch Gardens Williamsburg Family Prize Package FLASH GIVEAWAY

One of the reasons my family loves Busch Gardens SO much is because there are always new and fun things for all of us to do. From the rides, to the food, to the shows, we’re never bored, and this year, they’ve really kicked up the fun– especially for families!

Elmo Rocks is currently back in the Globe Theater for a limited time, InvadR, which has a low height requirement for the littles, just opened, AND, they’re about to kick off their Kidsiderate Concert Series with CHOO CHOO SOUL!

Don’t know who Choo Choo Soul is? Flip on Disney Jr. and they’re impossible to miss.

Choo Choo Soul is a hip-hop duo- Genevieve, the train conductor and her partner, Jeremy, a dancer and beat boxer dressed as a railroad engineer. They teach all kinds of lessons in a really fun and energetic way that gets kids up and moving. I swear I can hear “All Aboard the Choo Choo Train” in my sleep back when  my kids were obsessed with all things Disney Jr.

The giveaway I have for you today would have made my kids freak out a few years ago, so I’m hoping to pass that kind of joy along to one of you!

This FLASH giveaway begins and ENDS today, so make sure you enter and check your e-mail tonight!

Here’s what’s up for grabs:

1. Four (4) Busch Gardens Williamsburg single-day tickets.

2. One (1) Parking pass

3. Reserved seating to Choo Choo Soul on May 6

4. Meet and greet for Choo Choo Soul


SO, HOW DO YOU WIN? All you have to do is leave a comment below (make sure to comment with your email address- you don’t have to put it in the comment) and tell me your FAVORITE ride at Busch Gardens Williamsburg!

The winner will be drawn at 8pm EST TONIGHT, make SURE you check your email and respond before the day is over so I can get you your tickets if you win. Good luck!

Posted on May 2, 2017 by Holdin' Holden 41 Comments

InvadR- Busch Gardens’ NEW and FIRST Wooden Coaster! With my POV Ride Footage!

Like many people, when I hear the two words “Wooden Coaster” I think, OH NO. I typically avoid them like the plague, they’re just too rough for the ol’ neck & back these days, but Busch Gardens’ new wooden coaster InvadR, nestled in the wooded forest of New France, is unlike any of the rickety wooden coasters that I’ve been on before.

As a wood/steel hybrid coaster, one of the things I was the most excited for was the smooth ride it promised. Well, that, and the 74-foot drop, 9 airtime hills, two tunnels, and speeds reaching nearly 50 miles per hour. Excited enough to drag myself out of bed at 4:30am to be able to get to Busch Gardens’ before it opened and give it a whirl.

Yes, I said 4:30 in the MORNING. And I am not a morning person. The excitement was real.

Sunrise over Griffon @buschgardensva

A post shared by Jenny Schoberl (@holdinholden) on


Even though Parker is finally, FINALLY, well above the 48 height requirement for at least a few of the coasters, I can’t tell you how amped I was to hear that the height requirement on InvadR is 46″. Which means minis, who are too big for The Sesame Street Forest of Fun, but still too small for The Loch Ness Monster, can still hop on a “big kid” coaster and have fun with their families– something Parker spent a couple of seasons being really upset about. If only InvadR had come sooner!

STILL, it’s here now, for all the new little thrill seekers out there, and I think he was even more excited than me to hop on.


If you know anything about Busch Gardens, you know that not only is it beautiful, but the theming is pretty much perfect. InvadR and its gnarly hulking Viking self fits perfectly into the wooden, lumberjack-esque New France area of the park, and no, they did NOT tear anything out to put it in (trust me, people ask all the time). It interacts with both the Le Scoot Log Flume and the Caribou Train Station.

Granted, I’m not the greatest with photos, which means you should really just go and see it for yourself.

Don’t believe me yet?

How about this face, does this convince you?


No? STILL not enough. Sheesh, you’re really gonna make me pull out all the stops aren’t you?

FINE. I saved the best for last!

The footage of my first ever ride aboard InvadR in the front row.
Hold onto your sunglasses, people!



I’m seriously– hold on to your sunglasses! Put them somewhere safe! Bonus points to anyone who sees the point Thomas lost his. BUT, we had so much fun, he’s not even mad.

InvadR is open to the public now. Get to Busch Gardens and hop on!

Posted on April 10, 2017 by Holdin' Holden 1 Comment