May 24, 2001
Williamsburg, VA — Busch Gardens Williamsburg has become greener than ever with the debut of Ireland, the European-themed park's sixth country. Visitors to the award-winning adventure park experience the charm of the past with the pulse of the present. From adventure and enchantment to food and folklore, guests encounter an authentic journey through the Emerald Isle.
"Ireland delivers an unparalleled journey for our guests in 2001. There's nothing like it anywhere," said Daniel Brown, executive vice president and general manager of Busch Gardens Williamsburg. "The combination of European charm and mythical folklore, along with Ireland's reputation for hospitality made it a natural choice for Busch Gardens Williamsburg."
Guests venture across the Killarney Crossing bridge to the Irish hamlet of Killarney, an Irish festival marketplace, where spirited Irish musicians welcome passersby. Visitors feel like Irish villagers, travel on a white-knuckle 4-D adventure experience through a land of giants, experience traditional Irish dance, shop for Irish goods and enjoy a pint in an authentic pub.
Guests discover Killarney residents love to entertain. The Abbey Stone Theatre is home to a world-class, professional dance show, "Irish Thunder," featuring energetic and original Irish dances along with the fast and furious footwork of Irish step dancing. Strolling musicians and singers in the village square charm guests with song, dance and storytelling. The Killarney Sound Machine's resident leprechaun guarantees a laugh or two as he engages guests in witty conversation and entertains with his magical music machine.
Corkscrew Hill, a thrilling 4-D adventure experience, takes guests on a magical and mystical Celtic journey through a land of giants. The larger-than-life adventure invites passengers to experience life as miniatures in a world ruled by roaming giants. Riders encounter a hungry witch and magical stallion, and soar on the talons of a huge beast. Corkscrew Hill pushes the envelope in theme park technology by being the first high-format, digitally projected stereoscopic ride film.
Just a few steps away from Corkscrew Hill awaits "Castle O'Sullivan." Visitors to this enchanting castle meet a young heir and join him for an awesome music and special effects show including rain, thunder and a brilliant rainbow that appears magically over the audience. This show helps guests believe wishes really do come true.
Ireland is teeming with Irish artisans working throughout the hamlet. Practicing a centuries-old tradition of perfection, renowned Waterford Crystal craftsmen demonstrate the creation of richly cut crystal of the most singular beauty and sparkle. Visitors strolling into the Emerald Isle Shop find fine gifts of Waterford Crystal, Belleek china, Irish textiles and many other Irish handcrafted products selected especially for Busch Gardens Williamsburg. Enchanting gifts for guests of all ages are available at Toys of the Leprechaun Shop and Pot o' Gold Magic Shop.
Traditional Irish food is found at Grogan's Grille and Grogan's Pub, where genuine Irish hospitality is served up daily. A strolling balladeer and musicians create a cheerful dining experience while encouraging a rousing sing-a-long. Guests savor traditional favorites like corned beef sandwiches, Irish stew, smashed potatoes and soda bread, plus a variety of Anheuser-Busch beers.