The Playful Parent



It’s that time of year when you can catch good deals on passes to the best theme parks in Virginia and Maryland. Kings Dominion and Busch Gardens Williamsburg are both opening this weekend March 25th and Six Flags America opens shortly after on April 1st. Let’s take a look at these three amazing theme parks to see what’s new and what discounts are offered.



Busch Gardens

Busch Gardens has a lot going on this season…From new rides to great deals you can’t go wrong by choosing Busch Gardens. They have brought back a few great online-only offers for guests to experience all of the action this spring and summer. Here are four great reasons to visit Busch Gardens this  season:

  1. 2 Park Fun Day Deal (Water Country is FREE)

Purchase a Busch Gardens Williamsburg Fun Card and get a Water Country USA pass for FREE with the 2-Park Fun Card deal! Make sure you hurry to catch this deal because the offer is only available online through March 31.

  1. Free Preschool Pass

The 2- Park Preschool Pass offers unlimited admission through September 10, 2017 to both Busch Gardens and Water Country USA in Williamsburg, Virginia for kids 3 – 5 years old. This is an online-only offer. Hurry, passes must be registered and redeemed by May 31, 2017, and you must present your child’s birth certificate or travel passport at the Front Gate.

  1. Waves of Honor Active Duty Day

Free single day admission for active duty member and up to 3 dependents. One complimentary admission per year, per person to one park of choice. You must register for tickets online by May 31, 2017. This offer is not available at the Front Gate.

  1. Lots of new things to do

I think the biggest thing to highlight is the newest wooden roller coaster InvadR  that opens this spring! This family thrill ride will be the park’s first wooden coaster. Fly over InvadR’s nine air-time hills, including a 74-foot plunge that reaches speeds of almost 50 miles per hour.

Kids concerts are back! Start spring on a high note with kid-friendly concert series that encourage kids to sing and dance along. The schedule includes Choo Choo Sole with Genieve May 6th, Kidz Bop Kids May 13th, Teen Stars Live May 20-21.

Two new shows are set to debut this season. Don’t miss Britmania a new musical revue featuring British hits from the 1960s to today, debuts June 30, and will be performed throughout the day in the Globe Theatre. OktoberZest will feature German music and dances with a modern and new approach. It will debut March 31 in Das Festhaus  in the Oktoberfest village.

Kid Friendly Halloween Event Celebrate is new this Fall which will feature a silly, not-too-spooky fun at The Count’s Halloween Spooktacular on Saturdays and Sundays from October 7 – 29. Children can come dressed up to join in the costume parade and participate in other family-friendly activities during this daytime event.

Check out their website for more at


Kings Dominion

Don’t miss out on the fun at Kings Dominion this year! Here’s the 4-1-1:

Pre-K Pass

Children ages 3-5 are invited to enjoy unlimited visits to Kings Dominion throughout the 2017 season just by registering for the Kings Dominion Pre-K Pass online! Offering complimentary admission to Kings Dominion and Soak City, your little peanuts will love the Planet Snoopy Expansion, and they’ll also receive free admission to Dinosaurs Alive!

Interested families make sure to register for a child’s Pre-K pass online now and then redeem the pass at the park before April 30, 2017. Remember, the pass is only good for children between ages 3-5 at the time of redemption, and a proof of age is required. For more information and to register click here.

Special Events

Live entertainment and shows are held throughout the season, but be sure to plan your visit around their special events, including annual music festivals.

Ticket Specials/Season Pass:

You can purchase daily tickets in a variety of ways and combinations. Season passes are also available as Silver, Gold, or Platinum with varying levels of benefits and discounts. The park will also host Taste of Virginia, celebrating local food and craft beer, on the weekends from May 6-May 21; the Carousel will celebrate its 100th anniversary on April 29 and April 30; Kids Fest returns on weekends from June 10-June 18; and there will be fireworks on Memorial Day weekend.

Beyond the typical thrills of a theme park

Kings Dominion also offers an animatronic prehistoric experience with Dinosaurs Alive — free for Gold or Platinum season pass holders!

New this year

New this year, there will be free Wi-Fi throughout the park and a new mobile app that will list ride wait times.

Kings Dominion has expanded its Planet Snoopy section with three new rides.

  • Kite Eating Treewhere guests will be propelled to the top of a tower and bounce down a platform to experience sensations of weightlessness.
  • Sally’s Sea Plane, a giant plane that rotates and rises into the air.
  • Peanuts 500, a car ride designed for parents and children to ride together on a closed track.

Check out their website for more at


Six Flags America

Six Flags America also has a lot to offer; this theme park includes Maryland’s largest water park Hurricane Harbor and new roller coaster Wonder Woman!

Six reasons to take advantage of a season pass:

1. Pays for Itself 

A Season Pass pays for itself in less than two visits.

2. Unlimited Visits

Come as often as you want, stay as long as you like. There are plenty of reasons to visit all year long, including new ride openings, concerts, water park fun, Fright Fest and more!

3. FREE Tickets for Friends
Pass Holders can bring a friend for FREE on select days.

4. $300 in Park Savings
Receive over $300 in discounts on food, games, souvenirs and more.

5. Free Water Park
Seven of our theme parks have free water parks inside. Get two parks for the price of one!

6. FREE Admission to all Six Flags Theme Parks
Your Six Flags Theme Park season pass ID is accepted at 13 Six Flags parks.

For more information:

***I hope to bring everyone more details in future articles coming soon with sneaks peeks, deals and giveaways as the season continues! The Playful Parent doesn’t receive payment for featuring attractions. All opinions are my own; I like to sharing experiences and information so that parents have resources on fun family outings. Discounted or complimentary tickets are an advantage but not a requirement.***


Add yours

  1. Looks like there are a lot of options for great places to take the kids. As a parent of six kids, I appreciate being able to find a bargain. It takes family outings a little bit easier! Thanks for writing

  2. I’m not a parent, but I’m a HUGE amusement park fan and it kills me that Ive never been to Busch Gardens Williamsburg! More so now that they have Invade, which sounds really cool! You’re totally giving me a new summer time bucket list item here….thank you!

  3. KatsDysFunctionalFamily

    March 26, 2017 at 10:38 am

    America has the best theme parks! I live in Australia but your article has made me hungry to visit America!

  4. littleprinceleopold

    March 26, 2017 at 2:20 pm

    How fun!

  5. Wow, these are some really great deals! I wish more of them were closer to me, but I’m bookmarking this for later.

  6. I plan on going to Busch Gardens for my birthday this year. We also have a lot of little local places that do discounted admissions and specials that we want to try out.

  7. Wow! Everything on this list sounds amazing! I wish I was a little closer so I could take advantage of these rad deals.

  8. So nice that you collated all this data to make it easy for all Moms. We went to Northern VA last year – would have loved all this info 🙂

  9. Seems a great selection of places where kids can have fun and new experiences!

  10. It’s always nice to be able to take the kids somewhere and not have to spend so much! I think these are awesome deals to take advantage of.

  11. These are deals that parents should really take advantage of. I’m sure this will make lots of kids happy as well.

  12. I’d love to check all of these places out. My grandkids (and I) love theme parks and I do love savings.

  13. Omg such a great selection of place where I can bring my kids and I really love the great deal!

  14. I absolutely love six flags. I used to always get the season pass and cant wait to take my son there.

  15. This is great list of free activities. I found this to be very helpful.

  16. We took advantage of the Waves of Honor program when we lived in Virginia. Its a great benefit every military person in the area should take advantage of.

  17. There are a lot of theme parks here in our area offering great deals and we are planning to grab them, especially now that school is over.

  18. I wish we had fun parks like this to go to where we live. They look like loads of fun!

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