It’s Christmas in July at Busch Gardens Tampa as they revealed more details for their largest Christmas celebration ever, Christmas Town. The park will be transformed into a nighttime holiday wonderland of all things Christmas, filling guests senses with seasonal sights, sounds and flavors of the holiday season.
The separately-ticketed event will take place nightly from 6 to 11 p.m., every Friday, Saturday and Sunday night, from Nov. 30 through Dec. 23. It will feature special entertainment, live music, festive treats, holiday shopping and thousands and thousands of twinkling Christmas lights.
Guests will enter through Celebration Village, in the park’s Moroccan Village, which will include ornaments, glowing lights, local choirs and shops full of holiday gifts.
Guests will then stroll down a frozen pathway, that will sparkle and shimmer in the night as snowflakes dance down the front of the Moroccan Palace, welcoming guest for special performances of the all-new Christmas Town ice show.
Along the Cheetah Hunt walkway, a Jungle Jubilee will take place featuring special holiday fare and the new Carol of the Bells light show. The Carol of the Bells light show features tens of thousands of Christmas lights set in motion to a choreographed presentation of seasonal songs, covering the facade of the Crown Colony Restaurant building.
The Nairobi area will be redecorated as Candy Cane Lane with red and white lights twinkling in the trees, pointing guests down the path to the Christmas Town Express and Santa’s House.
At “Welcome to Santa’s House”, Mrs. Claus is in the kitchen baking holiday treats and Santa himself takes a break from his busy holiday schedule to meet and take photos with families in his private study.
Near Candy Cane Lane, guests can encounter Christmas Town Penguins inside the underwater penguin habitat.
In Stanleyville, Jimmy Osmond’s Christmas Jukebox features Jimmy Osmond and his family singing favorite Christmas tunes and sharing special holiday memories each night in the Stanleyville Theater. In the true spirit of Christmas, Busch Gardens is joining Jimmy in his work with the Children’s Miracle Network, and will be making a donation to local Tampa Bay-area kids in need.
Along Miracle Way, guests will marvel at a topiary representation of the Holy Nativity and illuminated angels, set along the Stanleyville Bridge with sacred holiday music in the warm glow of Christmas lights.
Younger guests will enjoy Sesame Street’s Season Of Fun, where Elmo and his friends will pose for pictures in their Christmas attire.
Guests can then celebrate a Floridian style Christmas in the Enchanted Flamingo Valley, featuring decorated palm trees, pink lights. Along the way they can also find Poinsettia Parkway which will feature hundreds of traditional holiday flowers and holiday treats.
On your way to play in the snow, in Gwazi Plaza, stop by Jingle Bell Junction and climb aboard a pint-sized train for a holly-jolly ride designed especially for young guests.
Guests can find the perfect holiday gift or indulge in a delicious seasonal treat as they explore Christmas Town Village. Set along the Gwazi Park walkway, tiny Christmas cabins will scent the air with seasonal treats like apple pies and strudels, gingerbread cookies, eggnog and roasting nuts, as well as a delicious array of flavored popcorns, roasted nuts, waffles with ice cream, fruit-filled crepes, rustic sandwiches, homemade potato chips and Starbucks coffees and hot chocolate.
Then in Christmas Town park, guests can experience real, frozen snowdrifts in the Show Wonderland snow play area, meander among quaint cabin shops, pose for pictures with strolling snowmen, and finish off the night with an exclusive concert with the Grammy Award-winning group Jars of Clay.
Check out a video highlighting all these themed areas from the Christmas Town announcement:
Along with these special areas, guests can still experience the park’s popular coasters and a special Christmas Town Express will feature a sing-a-long on wheels while circling the park on a lit vintage-style steam locomotive.
Check out Attractions – The Show host, Banks Lee, interview Nancy Hutson, vice president of entertainment at Busch Gardens about Christmas Town and get a tour of the Christmas Town Preview Center:
Similar to the park’s popular Halloween event, Christmas Town will be a separate-ticketed night event, and regular daytime admission is not required or included. General admission for Christmas Town is $39.99 plus tax. Busch Gardens annual pass members will receive the deepest discounts, and special offers are available for guests wishing to upgrade their paid daily admission to Busch Gardens and through promotional codes from select retail partners. Families with children ages 3 to 9 will enjoy a special advance-purchase price of $9.99 for their youngest members.
Stay tuned to Orlando Attractions Magazine for more information.