Virginia Catholic Day at Busch Gardens



Initial Communication PDF


This communication contains initial information concerning the Virginia Catholic Day at Busch Gardens. Please read all the information contained in this communication to ensure you have a full understanding of the event.


What is Virginia Catholic Day at Busch Gardens?

For many years, the youth of the Diocese have gathered at Busch Gardens for a day of fun and fellowship.  This year, we are opening up the event to families as well in an effort to bring our whole diocesan community together.  The day includes admission to the park, Sunday Vigil Mass, and dinner as a Diocese.


What is the schedule of the day (Saturday, October 2, 2021)?


10:00 am          Busch Gardens opens, pick-up tickets near the front entrance


12:00 pm          Ticket pickup ends


3:30 pm            Celebration of Sunday Vigil Mass at Abbey Stone Theatre at Busch Gardens


5:30 pm            Diocesan all-you-can eat dinner buffet at the Black Forest Pavilion opens


6:30 pm            Diocesan dinner buffet closes


11:00 pm          Busch Gardens closes (note: Howl-O-Scream event starts at 6:00 pm)


Who should attend the Virginia Catholic Day?

This event is open to all youth and families from around the Diocese.  You can register as either a group, a family or an individual.


What are some of the logistics for me to be aware of?

  • All ticket purchases will be made online through our online registration system.
  • All tickets will be picked up onsite on Saturday, October 2, 2021 at Busch Gardens at the tram drop off location.
  • All individuals who purchase tickets for the all-you-can-eat dinner will have a wrist band. The wrist band will get individuals into the all-you-can eat dinner.
  • Howl-O-Scream begins around 6:00 pm and may not be suitable for children under the age of 13.
  • The all-you-can eat dinner includes chicken tenders, pulled pork BBQ sandwiches, macaroni and cheese, mixed green salad, dessert, iced tea & soft drinks. There will be vegetarian and gluten free options available for people who request those in the online registration system.


What are the costs?

There are three options available to all individuals this year to choose from which include:


  1. All-inclusive ($62.79 per individual): Includes admission to the park (including Howl-O-Scream), Sunday Vigil Mass, and All-You-Can Eat Dinner Buffet


  1. Single-Day Admission Ticket ($46 per individual): Includes admission to the park (including Howl-O-Scream) and Sunday Vigil Mass


  1. All-You Can Eat Dinner Buffet ONLY ($16.79 per individual): Includes Sunday Vigil Mass, and All-You-Can Eat Dinner Buffet



  • Any individual can enter the park without purchasing tickets through the Diocese. In addition, the Sunday Vigil Mass does NOT require ticketing or a cost.
  • There is a $5 late fee per ticket purchased after Sunday, September 19, 2021 at 11:59pm. We will not take purchases over the phone or email; they must be processed using the online system.
  • There is no fee for substitutions.
  • There are no refunds after Sunday, September 19, 2021 at 11:59pm.



How do I register and what are the registration deadlines?

All registrations must occur by parish and will be done online. Visit to register. Registration opens in August 2021.


If you are registering a parish group, you need to know the parish name, parish contact, on-site coordinator, on-site coordinator contact information and the number of tickets for each option.  We do not need to collect individual names during registration or on-site.  A youth minister, DRE, or other member of the parish staff would be the most likely person to register in this fashion.


If you are coming to Busch Gardens as an individual, family, or group not connected to a parish, then you would need to have the name and contact information for the individual who is picking up tickets and serving as the on-site point of contact.


All payments are due prior to receiving your tickets on Saturday, October 2, 2021. Payment can be made online via credit card as part of the registration process, by sending a check to our office, or you can also pay on site with cash, check, or credit card.



How do I get my tickets?

Tickets are not mailed to each parish or to families or individuals. Instead:

  • Groups that registered as a parish group will have the parish coordinator pick up all the tickets for his/her parish from our Office for Evangelization table near ticket sales, prior to the turn-styles to enter the park. Please only send the parish coordinator to the table and have the rest of your group wait together.
  • Individuals and families who registered unconnected to a larger group will pick up their tickets directly from our Office for Evangelization table near ticket sales, prior to the turn-styles to enter the park.

Ticket pick up will be available from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm.  Any tickets not picked up by noon will be turned into the Busch Gardens Will Call office.  We will not release tickets to individuals who registered as part of a parish group without prior authorization, in writing, from the parish coordinator.



Will marketing and promotional materials be available for my parish?

A poster will be sent to each parish and school for your use. One side has blanks for you to write in your own prices (if you are charging additional fees for transportation OR subsidizing the cost of the day).



Where do I go for questions or additional support?

For all questions or support, contact Office for Evangelization via email ([email protected]) or phone (804-622-5159). On the day of the event, you may contact our office directly at 804-622-5159.