Last call! No more free beer at SeaWorld or Busch Gardens


It's the death knell for yet another lovely American tradition: Free beer for visitors to Anheuser-Busch's theme parks. SeaWorld's three locations and Busch Gardens' two locations are capping the keg on the generosity.

The free cup of beer was one of the coolest things about any theme park in America. Each park had its own "Hospitality House" where visitors of drinking age could claim one free cup of beer during a visit and, if they wanted, get a lesson about beer brewing. The parks have announced that those pavilions will be converted to something with "broader appeal" (translation: another restaurant or souvenir stand). You can still buy a beer, but it will cost you $5 a cup.

The parks used to have signs all over the place (even above the urinals) proudly proclaiming that they were American-owned. Those were quietly removed last year after Anheuser-Busch was purchased by Belgian beverage goliath InBev. It made promises not to change much, but those are proving to be hollow.