Busch Gardens Tampa Bay today announced the return of free beer samples at the park.
Starting tomorrow and running through August 5, guests age 21 and older can get up to two free samples a day at Garden Gate Cafe, which long-time fans will remember as the park's old Hospitality House — the former home of the park's free beer samples.
Those free tastes of Anheuser-Busch brews used to be one of the big attractions drawing people to the Busch Gardens and SeaWorld parks. Remember that Busch Gardens Tampa opened in 1959 as a brewery tour and gardens (thus, the name), evolving into a theme park over the years.
But when Belgian brewer InBev took over Anheuser-Busch in 2008 and spun off the company's theme parks, Busch Gardens and its sibling SeaWorld parks lost the free beer samples. It's been a tough road for the chain ever since, thanks in large part to increased competition from Universal Studios in Orlando, which launched its industry-changing Harry Potter attractions in 2010. The return of free beer to the original Busch Gardens park* is welcome news for fans.
This time, though, fans won't be limited to Anheuser-Busch brands. Busch Gardens will start by pouring Corona (just in time for Cinco de Mayo), and will follow that over the spring and summer with seven-ounce samples of Bud Light, Founders All Day IPA, M.I.A 305, Miller Light, Shock Top, and Yuengling.
Fans planning to visit the park frequently during the promotion might consider the Busch Gardens Brew Club, which will offer five-dollar refills of 20-some on-tap brands in a reserved stein. And Busch Gardens will follow the free samples with an Oktoberfest-style Bier Fest event, running weekends August 25 through September 16.
*Okay, the Tampa park isn't actually the first Busch Gardens, even though it is the original theme park by the name of Busch Gardens that remains open. But long-time Theme Park Insider readers will remember that the original original Busch Gardens was located in Pasadena, California (Theme Park Insider's hometown).Tweet
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