The Beginning of the End?


I remember walking up to the Hospitality House at Busch Gardens and asking for a Budweiser. The man behind the counter asked for my ID and I proudly flashed my too-dark-skinned, too-big-smiled driver’s license which proved I had turned 21 just a week prior. I sniffed the delicious beer smell and took a swallow… then my entire face crinkled up as the most awful taste burnt my esophagus. I tried drinking some more beer– just so I don’t waste the drink– but I ended up throwing most of it away.

Probably corny, but that really was my first experience drinking alcohol. And before more questions are asked, I can tolerate beer better now.

My point is, I read The Theme Park Insider and today’s article was a melting pot of the rumors surrounding the future of the Anheuser-Busch theme parks with the buyout from InBev.

Read the article here

But January 1, 2009 seems to be a big day. Anheuser-Busch slaughter begins as all the flowery logos of A-B’s eagles will be removed. Furthermore, the iconic Clydesdale horses and their partner the donkey, will also be removed. What is going on here? I used to try and spot how many of those eagle logos I could find– so far I recall two.

One of the biggest rumor shocks is… the Hospitality House will close down! What?! Forget getting two free samples of the Budweiser portfolio. Hopefully this is merely a rumor.

With the buyout by InBev, I understand that it’s necessary to sell the parks. InBev is probably in debt from buying Anheuser-Busch. The future of the nine parks is currently suspended in limbo with several interested buyers. As a theme park enthusiast, I guess the removal of the horses or the beer is not very disheartening as long as all the animals and rides will remain. I’m more worried about the connection of the parks to each other. Seaworld, Adventure Island, Busch Gardens, and Aquatica are all close to me and hopefully my benefits of freely visiting them all will continue.

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