Busch Gardens Howl-O-Scream 2017: New Thrills and Chills

Photo: Busch Gardens

Get ready for goosebumps, spine chills and cold-hearted horror at Busch Gardens’ 2017 installment of Howl-O-Scream. A new haunted house, escape room and Terror-tory are in the works, and they’re all destined to carve up lots of screams and scares.

New Escape Room: No Escape: Case of the Haunted Hotel

Guests must follow clues and solve riddles to find their way out of this creepy cursed hotel. Unlock the mysteries, or you may never check out. The returning escape room is the Case of Mr. Karver, which will have new tricks and riddles to solve.

Axe Alley
Photo: Busch Gardens

New Terror-Tory: Axe Alley

To go along with the park’s new roller coaster, InvadR, a new Terror-tory (or scare zone) has arisen from Viking battle cries. This new scare zone, located in New France, is all about a raiding party gone very very wrong. Desolate ruins of ashes and axe-slashed oaks are all that’s left. Watch out, or you might be next. Axe Alley takes the place of Wendigo Woods.

New Haunted House: FrostBite

The new haunted house, FrostBite, takes the place of the vampires of Bitten from previous years. Though I’m sad to see one of my favorites go, I’m excited to see what’s in store.

FrostBite will be located inside the Curse of DarKastle* ride, but it will not carry over the theming of DarKastle or use the ride vehicles. FrostBite takes guests on a freezing foray through a kingdom that has been overtaken by icy creatures. Think: “Frozen” with a macabre makeover.

Everyone in this land has been consumed with frost and ice, and anybody who dares to walk through it runs the risk of being exposed to chilling elements at every turn of the maze.

More New-Ness at Howl-O-Scream 2017

The park will have its first ever exclusive sneak peek with Pass Member Howl-O-Scream Preview Night on Friday, September 22. This event takes place from 4-10 p.m. The whole park will be open for pass members to enjoy their favorite haunts and Terror-Tories along with rides, shows and food.

While not new, per se, the park is welcoming back the Starfright Orchestra after an eight year hiatus. This 12-piece swing band returns with some of its original members singing performing songs such as “I Put a Spell on You” and “Monster Mash.”

Howl-O-Scream Haunted Houses 2017

  • New FrostBite – Germany
  • Circo Sinistro – Festa Italia
  • Catacombs – France
  • Dead Line – Pompeii in Italy
  • Cornered – Germany
  • Lumberhack – wooded area behind Das Festahaus
  • Unearthed – Scarlett’s Revenge – Scotland

Axe Alley
Photo: Busch Gardens

Howl-O-Scream Terror-Tories 2017

  • New – Axe Alley – New France (a.k.a. Canada)
  • Ripper Row – England
  • Demon Street – France
  • Sideshow Square – Italy
  • Vampire Point – Germany

Night Beats show at the CASKet Club
Photo: Busch Gardens

Howl-O-Scream Shows 2017

  • Fiends – Abbey Stone Theatre
  • Monster Stomp – Globe Theatre
  • Night Beats – Das Festhaus
  • Starfright Orchestra – Italy’s Il Teatro Di San Marco

Howl-O-Scream 2017 Details

Howl-O-Scream opens on September 23, 2017 and runs every Friday, Saturday and Sunday through Sunday, October 29. The park will stay open until midnight on Saturdays in October, which is new. It will also add two additional Thursdays – Oct. 19 and 26 – to its operating schedule.

Howl-O-Scream 2017 operating hours may vary. Be sure to visit howloscream.com/va for schedules and additional information as well as to purchase tickets.

Bring a Friend for Free

On select nights, Busch Gardens season pass holders may “share the scare” and bring a friend for free. Visit the park’s self-service ticketing kiosk to redeem. This offer is only valid on the following days: September 23, 24, 29, 30 and October 1 and 6.

Note: If you’ve never attended Howl-O-Scream, please be aware that is not intended for young children. The park becomes seriously scary after 6:00 p.m. Before that, it’s perfectly fine. You can ride rides, watch shows and enjoy the fall décor with no problem. Please consider your child’s fright factor when deciding whether to bring them to Howl-O-Scream.

Check out Howl-O-Scream 2016 for a peek into what to expect.

* Also of note: The Curse of DarKastle attraction will be closed for the season starting on Sept 4. It will reopen as FrostBite on Sept. 22.

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