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Busch Gardens Williamsburg launches special event opening with limited capacity

Busch Gardens Williamsburg's Coasters and Craft Brews special event will open to limited capacity. Guests must reserve a spot and masks are required.

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. — Busch Gardens Williamsburg is still closed to the public but the park announced it is launching a limited capacity, special event opening in August.

Coasters and Craft Brews is an outdoor event that will offer three roller coasters, local craft beers, and barbecue.

The special event will run Aug. 6-16 from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thursdays, and from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

Busch Gardens said in order to comply with Virginia's phase 3 guidelines--theme parks are limited to 1,000 guests--attendees must reserve a spot.

To secure a reservation, visitors can go to buschgardens.com/williamsburg/reservation.

Park officials said it is introducing enhanced health and safety measures in anticipation of the special event opening.

Those measures include cleaning and sanitizing, physical distancing, face coverings and temperature screenings.

"Special event capacity will be extremely limited to create ample space for guests to enjoy their experience, while maintaining physical distancing in a safe environment," Busch Gardens Williamsburg said in a news release.

SeaWorld Entertainment, the parent company of Busch Gardens Williamsburg, released a preliminary report of its second-quarter earnings on Wednesday and announced it expected a phased reopening in early August.

Under Phase 3 of Governor Ralph Northam's reopening plan, Busch Gardens was allowed to reopen with a guest cap of 1,000 people, but the park chose not to do that. It said that reopening the park for so few guests wouldn't be financially viable.