Thursday, September 29, 2022

Busch Gardens remains World’s Most Beautiful Park for 29th year

Busch Gardens, located in lower James City County, was recently honored by the National Amusement Park Historical Association for the 29th year in a row. (WYDaily/Courtesy of Busch Gardens)
Busch Gardens, located in lower James City County, was recently honored by the National Amusement Park Historical Association for the 29th year in a row. (WYDaily/Courtesy of Busch Gardens)

Busch Gardens Williamsburg remains the reigning champion for the title of “World’s Most Beautiful Park.”

The park, located in lower James City County, was recently honored by the National Amusement Park Historical Association for the 29th year in a row, Busch Gardens announced in a news release Thursday.

The award stems from the 33rd-annual NAPHA Amusement Park and Attractions Survey. NAPHA is a worldwide organization that works to preserve, document and emphasize enjoyment of the amusement park and theme park industry.

“This award exemplifies Busch Gardens Williamsburg’s longstanding commitment to ensuring a world-class guest experience in a beautiful setting,” said Kevin Lembke, park president at Busch Gardens Williamsburg and Water Country USA.  “I’m so proud of our entire team. They all play a role in achieving this honor.”

The park’s topography helps make Busch Gardens Williamsburg unique, said Jason Ingram, landscaping leader at Busch Gardens.

“Using our park’s existing topography is one of the things that make this park so special.  You could be strolling along a beautifully shaded, lush pathway and then out of nowhere a roller coaster can rush overhead.  Our landscape really creates wow moments for our guests,” Ingram added.

Busch Gardens, located in lower James City County, was recently honored by the National Amusement Park Historical Association for the 29th year in a row. (WYDaily/Courtesy of Busch Gardens)
Busch Gardens, located in lower James City County, was recently honored by the National Amusement Park Historical Association for the 29th year in a row. (WYDaily/Courtesy of Busch Gardens)

Busch Gardens has used its title recently as an example of the theme park’s value and investment in its visitors and grounds. The park recently requested a 355-foot height waiver to build a new attraction near the broken bridge and Verbolten.

The height waiver is the tallest ever approved by the Board of Supervisors for the park.

At board meetings, Lembke emphasized the importance of adding new attractions to the park to keep visitors coming back and attract new ones, as well.

Supervisors agreed supporting Busch Gardens — one of the largest taxpayers in the county — would also support the community. Supervisors approved the application unanimously.

The application came on the heels of the opening of other rides at Busch Gardens and Water Country USA: Finnegan’s Flyer and the Cutback water coaster.

Sarah Fearing
Sarah Fearing is the Assistant Editor at WYDaily. Sarah was born in the state of Maine, grew up along the coast, and attended college at the University of Maine at Orono. Sarah left Maine in October 2015 when she was offered a job at a newspaper in West Point, Va. Courts, crime, public safety and civil rights are among Sarah’s favorite topics to cover. She currently covers those topics in Williamsburg, James City County and York County. Sarah has been recognized by other news organizations, state agencies and civic groups for her coverage of a failing fire-rescue system, an aging agriculture industry and lack of oversight in horse rescue groups. In her free time, Sarah enjoys lazing around with her two cats, Salazar and Ruth, drinking copious amounts of coffee and driving places in her white truck.

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