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Posts Tagged ‘theme park’

Your Teen is Going to LOVE Virginia

by Casey | Posted on April 10th, 2013

Teens are the toughest crowd to please, but when you’re armed with these nuggets of fun, it’s quite possible you’ll see a smile sneak through.

Intimidator305 at Kings DominionThe obvious top contenders for teen fun are theme parks and Virginia has two major players in that arena: Busch Gardens in Williamsburg and Kings Dominion in Doswell. Which to choose? There are a number of factors, but go with location first.

Families vacationing along the coast or in Colonial Williamsburg will appreciate Busch Gardens’ location. Families visiting the Richmond area or looking to escape the busyness of the metro DC area will encounter Kings Dominion first. For those west and south of these locations, we suggest you make the parks themselves your destination.

If location is less of an issue, consider the value of each park. Will you come back again or is this a one-time round of fun? See the cost break down in our New at Busch Gardens and Kings Dominion for 2013 post.

Adrenaline doesn’t stop when the roller coaster pulls into the station. Let your adventure seekers try their hands at hang gliding. The Eastern Shore Hang Gliding Center in Weirwood is surprisingly able to accommodate nearly every member of the family, should the teen in question need moral support.

Not quite ready to glide mile-high? Perhaps a zip line is a good starting place for those new at pulling their feet off the ground. Virginia has several zip line opportunities to choose from, so again, let their locations guide you.

Summer Tubing at Wintergreen ResortThe Discovery Ridge Adventure Center is located at Wintergreen Resort, which is easily accessed from the Valley, Northern Virginia and Central Virginia. Not to mention, the zip line is accompanied by mini golf, arcade, mechanical bull, climbing tower, summer tubing and more.

Nearby Bryce Resort in Basye also has zip lining for summer fun – ten platforms totaling 3500′ of cable! Check the schedule for days and hours of operation.

Fifty-two obstacles and 13 zip lines make the canopy at the Adventure Park at Sandy River Retreat pretty awesome. This park is the largest and first of its kind in Central Virginia (it’s in Rice, VA) and offers an advanced, state-of-the-art safety system.

Bear Mountain Ziplines is located in Luray and your adventure starts with a tractor-drawn wagon ride up the mountain. ‘Liners are given the safety and usage instructions before descending 2700 feet down “Mama Bear.” It’s doubtful the ziplining will get old, but if it does, there’s a three-story Bear Scramble climbing wall waiting to be conquered.

A 900′ zip line is the centerpiece of Wilderness Adventure at Eagle Landing in New Castle, but visitors will also find a 50′ climbing wall, canoeing on Craig Creek, bike trails, ropes courses and more. It’s easy to spend a day or more at Wilderness Adventure.

Once teens get the hang of driving, they might be tempted to put the pedal to the metal. At Martinsville Grand Prix Go Karts, they can do just that and get a taste of what NASCAR is all about. Fifteen to 20 laps around the oval track with banked turns will give them all the speed they can handle.

The XZone in Chesterfield was built especially with teens in mind. Join in the fun of paintball with all of the equipment and supplies available on-site.

Ever tried kiteboarding or paddleboarding? SouthEast Expeditions offers lessons in both sports and in multiple locations. Try either of those or take out a kayak or hang glider from Cape Charles, Onancock or Sunset Beach.

Is this inspiration enough for your active teen or do you need more? Click over to for more ideas.

LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
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Looking Ahead to Summer in Virginia

by Casey | Posted on March 26th, 2013

Love to be one of the first to experience something new? Fortunately, there are quite a few new things you can look forward to in Virginia this summer. Which ones will make your must-do list?



Kings Dominion has completely revitalized and expanded their kids Planet Snoopy area. Your family will now find nearly 14 acres of fun that includes 18 rides. It’s the world’s biggest PEANUTS themed children’s area and you can be among the first to give it a whirl. KD is located in Doswell and opens this Saturday, March 29. Get Tickets

The geocaching craze is spreading to families like wildfire and Virginia State Parks have a brand new Tree-mendous Adventure for 2013  - one you won’t want to miss. This year’s quest is all about Virginia’s native trees. Visit five parks and then register on Virginia Outdoors to receive a special prize. Hit all 34 caches and there might be another special surprise. Don’t have a handheld GPS? No worries. All Virginia State Parks have them available for rent.

LOVE our LOVEworks? There are more than 15 coming soon, and they stretch across the entire state. We’ll have the full list for you as soon as we’re able to share, but for now, catch a glimpse of the LOVEwork Richmond International Raceway is building. One thing is for sure – those who have made a game out of “finding the LOVE” have their work cut out for them!

ATV enthusiasts, rejoice! Finally, the Spearhead Trail in Southwest Virginia is opening this summer! Phase one – The Mountain View Trail System – opens in June. Permits will be available for sale in May. The Mountain View Trail highlights the best of southwest’s outdoors – amazing views from the mountains and lush, forest-lined creeks. Additionally, watch for 20 miles of the Leeman Field System to open sometime this year.

More to LOVE:

See what else is new in Virginia and make your summer plans soon.

LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
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New at Busch Gardens and Kings Dominion for 2013

by Casey | Posted on March 14th, 2013

Virginia’s theme parks are preparing to open for the spring and summer season – one as soon as this Sunday. If your family LOVEs to get outside and enjoy the fresh air, as well as get the first coaster-induced adrenaline rush of 2013, here are a few fun things you should know.

Busch Gardens

Busch Gardens

Busch Gardens in Williamsburg, Virginia opens this Sunday, March 17 at 10 a.m. If you’re an annual pass holder, you get in a day early! Pass members will be treated to a preview day this Saturday, complete with a Black Forest picnic. Reserve your spot.

The newest ride at Busch Gardens is Verbolten. It opened mid-season 2012, so if you visited the park early last year, you missed out on this gem. It’s an indoor/outdoor multi-launch coaster that departs from a German tourist center. With various scenarios, you never know which path your autobahn will take.

Don’t miss the inaugural Busch Gardens Food & Wine Festival. It’s happening every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from May 31 through June 23. As you make your way through the park you’ll encounter foods and beverages authentic to each country of Busch Gardens with a few extras thrown in, like sangria from Spain. The Festival experience is in addition to your park admission. Each of-age guest will be able to pre-load a card to swipe at each station, taking cash-fumbling out of the equation.


  • Sesame Street Forest of Fun Preschool Pass – Register online and redeem at the park by May 31, 2013 for your preschooler (ages 3-5) to enjoy unlimited admission to both Busch Gardens and Water Country USA through September 2, 2013. Valid for Virginia residents only.
  • Fun Card – The single day admission for Busch Gardens is $70 and the Fun Card is $70. If there’s the slightest chance you’ll go again before September 2, 2013, get the Fun Card and enjoy unlimited admission.
  • 2-Park Summer Flex Card – So you love Water Country USA just as much as you love Busch Gardens. Luckily, there’s a card for that. Buy this card and enjoy seven days of consecutive use between the two parks. It’s $80 online – a $39 discount.
  • Meal Deal Package – One price ($22) gives you two meals – a lunch and a dinner. That’s a 40% savings available online only.
    • Kid’s Dining Certificate – One kid’s meal and a fountain drink for $5.99. It’s not discounted, but it goes to show that you can feed the kids without breaking the bank.

Kings Dominion

Kings Dominion in Doswell, Virginia, opens Friday, March 29 at 10:30 a.m., rolling out a brand new, re-imagined Planet Snoopy. Eight new rides bring the total to 18 and doubles the space at nearly 14 acres. That makes it the world’s largest PEANUTS themed children’s area. Check out the webcam to monitor the process.

If the all-new kid fun isn’t enough to pull you to KD, maybe the largest entertainment line-up in years will do the trick. Seven brand new offerings take the total to 10, giving you plenty of options to sit and take a break. Expect to see a BMX-style show that will include semifinalists from Season 7 of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent,” and a new “On Broadway” musical revue that brings you the classic shows from New York City.


  • Everyone Pays Kids Price Offer – Buy your single-day ticket online and pay the kid’s rate of $39.99. That’s a $22 savings for adults and only available online for a visit by June 16, 2013. Note that you have to pick your date of visit to complete the purchase.
  • Silver Season Pass – Visit KD as much as you want until September 2, 2013 for only $72. The regular adult single-day admission is $61.99 at the gate, so for just $10 more you can come back again and again. This pass is valid for ages 3 and over. A perk to being a Silver Season Pass holder is the 10% discount on in-park dollars, called Beagle Bucks.

What are you waiting for? Get your tickets and plan your Virginia Theme Park vacation before the deals – and time – are gone.

LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
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A Day of Fun and Free Concerts, too!

by Casey | Posted on May 31st, 2012

Virginia’s theme parks – Busch Gardens and Kings Dominion – are fantastic destinations for a day or more of family fun, but did you know that their special summer events are included with your normal admission? No extra fees for the additional excitement you’ll find beyond the gates! And psst! We have some tips for saving on your tickets, too.

Busch Gardens Concert Series

Busch Gardens Concert Series

Busch Gardens

Busch Gardens LIVE and Glory at the Gardens are two concert series with big name performers. After your day of exhilirating park shenanigans (including riding that brand new coaster – Verbolten), jam out with these artists:

  • June 3: Hot Chelle Rae
  • June 10: Chris Tomlin
  • June 17: Kellie Pickler
  • June 24: Third Day
  • August 26: Victoria Justice

Every night from July 1 through August 19 visitors to BG will be treated to IllumiNights: A Busch Gardens Encore. What’s that? Fifty straight nights of a park-wide fireworks spectacular with multiple live performances and special effects.

Busch Gardens - Escape from Pompeii

Busch Gardens - Escape from Pompeii

BG Ticket Savings

The Bounce Ticket might just be your best bet if you’ve got a finite amount of time to be in the Williamsburg area – say like seven consecutive days? The Bounce Ticket gives you unlimited visits to Busch Gardens, Colonial Williamsburg, and Water Country USA for up to seven consecutive days. Plus, when you make your purchase online the price is 20% cheaper and you get free parking!

For those within driving distance who would like to visit BG more than once this summer, consider the Fun Card. It gives you unlimited visits from now until September 3rd. It’s basically like paying for one day ($66.99) and coming back all summer for free. Yes, the single day ticket is also $66.99. Might as well go Fun Card, ya know?

If you have a child aged three to five years old, do not buy a ticket. He or she can get in for FREE with the Sesame Street Forest of Fun Preschool Pass (Virginia residents only). Note: You MUST take your child’s birth certificate with you to the park. I learned this the hard way. The Preschool Pass is valid for unlimited admission through October 28, 2012.

Kings Dominion - Ghoster Coaster

Kings Dominion - Ghoster Coaster

Kings Dominion

Two awesome concert events await you when you plan your visit to Kings Dominion on select dates.

KingsFest is three days of some of the best Christian artists on the scene. Save by purchasing tickets in advance for just one day or all three.

  • June 28
    • Casting Crowns * NEEDTOBREATHE * Thousand Foot Krutch * Royal Tailor * Jamie Grace * speaker Justin Lookadoo
  • June 29
    • Skillet * Kutless * Lecrae * Nine Lashes * Sent By Ravens * The Lost Colors * speaker Bob Lenz
  • June 30
    • tobyMac * Owl City * RED * Icon For Hire * Manafest * speaker David Nasser

On July 14th gospel lovers will definitely want to be at KD. It’s JoyFest, after all!

  • Fred Hammon * Marvin Sapp * Martha Munizzi * Vashawn Mitchell * William McDowell * Lecrae * Humble Tip * Bone Hampton
WaterWorks at Kings Dominion - 20 acres of H2O fun!

WaterWorks at Kings Dominion - 20 acres of H2O fun!

KD Ticket Savings

Military, get your fun on at Kings Dominion July 3 & 4 for FREE! Any active, inactive, or retired service member can enjoy the park for free when you show your miltary ID.

Through June 17th, everyone’s a kid! Adults pay the daily kid ticket price of $37.99. The trick? You must purchase online and you must select the date you plan to visit.

After the “Everyone’s a Kid” deal expires, remember this: DON’T BUY YOUR TICKETS AT THE PARK. Purchase them online, print them, and bring them with you. The online price is $10 cheaper.

Need a payment plan? Purchase season passes online before June 30 and pay for them over the course of three months. Expect a monthly payment of $23.33 to $33.33 per ticket, depending on the age of each pass holder.

Now that you’ve got the scoop on the best ticket prices and the extra fun without an extra fee, what are you waiting for? Those theme parks are calling!

LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
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Deals & Discounts, Events, Family | 2 Comments

Spring Break Theme Park Savings

by Casey | Posted on March 27th, 2012

Perhaps a little spring escape is in order while the kids take a break from school. If that’s what your family has in mind, we bring you good news of great savings!

Kings Dominion

Kings Dominion

Busch Gardens and Kings Dominion are always top-of-mind for families looking for ready-made entertainment. Take advantage of these savings:

  • Busch Gardens Sesame Street Forest of Fun Preschool Pass – Children aged 3 to 5 can go to Busch Gardens free when parents secure this park pass online. Children receive unlimited admission through October 28, 2012.
  • Busch Gardens Spring Deal for Children 6 to 9 – Purchase one adult pass and get a free pass for a child in this age range. Use promo code BGWPAMPERS. The pass is good for one visit only.
  • Kings Dominion Everyone’s a Kid Price – Choose a day this spring to play at Kings Dominion and pay the kids ticket price of $37.99. Valid April 6-May 31, 2012.
  • Kings Dominion tickets are $10 cheaper when purchased through their website. If you wait until 3 days before your visit, save $15 per ticket.
  • Busch Gardens Open Dates: Daily March 30-April 15; Weekends April 20-May 20; Daily May 25-September 3
  • Kings Dominion Open Dates: Daily April 6-15; Weekends April 21-May 20; Daily May 25-September 3
Busch Gardens

Busch Gardens

Save on your accommodation near the theme park of your choice with these deals from our partners.

Enjoy your time together in Virginia. Happy Spring Break!

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