tml Breastfeeding Disaster at Busch Gardens Williamsburg VA – Mama Banana's Adventures

Breastfeeding Disaster at Busch Gardens Williamsburg VA

Disclosure; This is not a sponsored post, it is based on my personal experience at the park.

     My family looked forward to vacationing in Virginia for months. Living in a much chillier Northern state, dreaming of warm weather, sand and of course our planned trip to Busch Gardens Williamsburg VA was really exciting. With my husband and I, our 3 small children, Grandma and Pop, my brother and SIL and their 3 small children we certainly had a full crew and an exciting trip ahead.
     My children are huge Sesame Street fans! The park’s Sesame Street themed section was our main reason for choosing this location. This trip was not only designed to be fun for everyone, but with an upcoming surgery for my 2 year old showing him a fun filled summer was at the top of our priority list. We were excited to visit Bush Gardens Williamsburg VA an see all the Sesame Street rides, characters and attractions and make happy memories.
     As a breastfeeding Mom to two babies, my 5 month old and 2 year old, I didn’t worry about finding a location to breastfeed at Busch Gardens because it was designed for small children. Obviously they would have nursing Moms and families in mind, right?! Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.
     When it came time to nurse my baby and toddler, I was beyond thrilled to learn that the park had a Nursing room. We could get out of the sun, change diapers, breastfeed and get everyone back to the park as soon as possible. I left my family group and took my two youngest children over to the nursing room (you can see the door next to the garbage can in the photo here). The nursing room is next to the Women’s and Men’s bathrooms.

   
      As I approached the door, a 40-ish man exited with two small children and in a very rude voice said “You can’t go in there, my Mother-in-law is changing into her swimsuit.” I looked at him and said “I have to breastfeed my babies, that’s the nursing room.” As I continued walking he yelled at me three more times. I figured it was a large room and checked the door…locked.
     As I looked around I could see that there were no tables available, no benches or employees…and a long standing line of unhappy Moms with babies waiting. Wishing I had my husband with me…because I know this rude strange Man would have never yelled at me with him by my side…I tried to call his phone and unfortunately he didn’t answer. So I waited. Finally…the door opened and out came an older woman, maybe in her 60’s with white hair wearing a black and white bathing suit and black shorts. At this point I was standing and holding my baby nursing him. She looked at us blankly, at my breast and my nursing baby. No apology. Yes lady, you may possibly be the rudest person in the world. Oh wait, no, that’s your son-in-law. I didn’t say anything to her.
     A new Mom with a screaming baby came rushing up behind me and asked for help into the room. As I opened the door for her, still nursing my baby, I could see that it wasn’t much bigger then a large closet with 1 nursing chair, a changing station hooked to the wall and dim lighting. She looked at my nursing baby. I smiled and said “don’t worry, by the time you get to baby 3 nursing in public is second nature.” I helped her get her stroller through and closed the door. I knew at this point that I would have to find somewhere else to nurse my children.

      I scanned the area and was shocked to see that there were No benches and No tables in sight. I’m certainly not ashamed of nursing in public…I just like to sit on a bench or chair! It’s nice to put your back up against something to breastfeed. Unfortunately at Busch Gardens Williamsburg VA…it would have to be the cement wall surrounding the bathrooms…next to a garbage can.
     By the time my husband and my family found us, I was sitting on the ground and already onto nursing my toddler. I changed diapers, nursed my babies and they were happy to have some milk and a fresh diaper. We went back to the water themed portion of Sesame Street park and my boys went right back to having fun. Totally unaware of my struggle and with happy full bellies, we continued the rest of our trip. I contacted Busch Gardens on Facebook (which I now can’t locate) and didn’t get the response I was hoping for. I hope that they took the time to look at their provisions for nursing Moms and children, and have made some major changes. As for the rude man yelling at me for trying to go into the nursing room, I’ll let Karma worry about you.
     If you are visiting this park don’t count on the nursing room to be available, or accommodating. My best suggestion would be to nurse in the food area so you can sit down, or on the wall by the water features. If anyone has an issue with it…they shouldn’t be at a kid’s park. I’d recommend taking a blanket to change diapers on, and baby safe sunscreen, patience and definitely keep your spouse or friend close by. 

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35 thoughts on “Breastfeeding Disaster at Busch Gardens Williamsburg VA

  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    That is crazy ridiculous! I'm happy to hear you reached out to them in hopes of becoming more accommodating… even if they didn't respond. Good for you for nursing in public. I've never been able to do it. I tried a couple times but I was too self conscious and my baby was far too distracted by the people around. I don't plan on trying again with a third baby.. (meaning NO 3rd babies period…) If an accidental baby comes along, I will try to remember all my inspiring blogging friends who share their public nursing experiences and try again.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    That is crazy ridiculous! I'm happy to hear you reached out to them in hopes of becoming more accommodating… even if they didn't respond. Good for you for nursing in public. I've never been able to do it. I tried a couple times but I was too self conscious and my baby was far too distracted by the people around. I don't plan on trying again with a third baby.. (meaning NO 3rd babies period…) If an accidental baby comes along, I will try to remember all my inspiring blogging friends who share their public nursing experiences and try again.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    Doesn't that woman remember what it was like to have little kids in a public area? Why didn't she get changed in an area designated for people who need to get changed? Probably because she was too impatient to wait for others to use that facility. Shame on her and her son in law for being so rude. Let's hope karma does her job. And shame on the park for not being more accommodating.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    I am sorry you had such a bad experience, it's too bad that parks like this do not take into account nursing mom's needs.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    I am sorry you had such a bad experience, it's too bad that parks like this do not take into account nursing mom's needs.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    I am really surprised that a place geared to family's would not have a better area for changing and nursing. It does sound like a fun place to spend the day with the lids.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    I am really surprised that a place geared to family's would not have a better area for changing and nursing. It does sound like a fun place to spend the day with the lids.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    I think it is so ridiculous that mothers have to go through so much trouble to feed their babies. This resort should be ashamed.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    This is really bad! They should have a proper breastfeeding room. I still can't believe that rude man. Some people are so self-centered.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    This is really bad! They should have a proper breastfeeding room. I still can't believe that rude man. Some people are so self-centered.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    How sad that A. Women can't breastfeed while men can be completely shirtless! And B. That a woman is only not yelled at if there's a man next to her. How about we treat women like people and not their husband's property!

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    How sad that A. Women can't breastfeed while men can be completely shirtless! And B. That a woman is only not yelled at if there's a man next to her. How about we treat women like people and not their husband's property!

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    I would never come here with my family. I'm a breastfeeding mom and its hard enough as it is to get comfortable.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    I would never come here with my family. I'm a breastfeeding mom and its hard enough as it is to get comfortable.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    As a breastfeeding mom this totally annoys me. What is going on with the world? Women need a place to feed their babies, its not really a foreign concept folks!? I would never go here with my family, not ever.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    As a breastfeeding mom this totally annoys me. What is going on with the world? Women need a place to feed their babies, its not really a foreign concept folks!? I would never go here with my family, not ever.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    It seems inconceivable to me that a place geared towards families with young children would not have a MUCH larger and more comfortable area for breast feeding young children. I don't know where their heads are at!! As for that man–Karma will get him–or his Mom!!

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    It seems inconceivable to me that a place geared towards families with young children would not have a MUCH larger and more comfortable area for breast feeding young children. I don't know where their heads are at!! As for that man–Karma will get him–or his Mom!!

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    Unbelievable! Not so much the rude man – I find that people in general are rude. But to only have one small area for nursing when there are probably hundreds of nursing moms in and out of the park every day? I'm tweeting this to Busch Gardens!

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    Unbelievable! Not so much the rude man – I find that people in general are rude. But to only have one small area for nursing when there are probably hundreds of nursing moms in and out of the park every day? I'm tweeting this to Busch Gardens!

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    I have been there and have seen that nursing room. I would be furious! They should have used the bathroom then, that is designated for us nursing moms. People have no common sense!

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    It's too bad that happened to you. I formula fed, so I never ran into issues like that.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    It's too bad that happened to you. I formula fed, so I never ran into issues like that.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    It is very disappointing that this park does not accommodate breast feeding mothers better than they do. I love this park, it is – other than this – one of the best theme parks around, anywhere. What's even more disappointing is that Kings Dominion, while better than in the past, has some of the best accommodations for mothers and dads alike. It has a very nice cottage, with several breastfeeding rooms, recliners, water, bottle heaters, toys, television/dvd and more. Busch Gardens really needs to take a good long look at this and do the right thing.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    It is very disappointing that this park does not accommodate breast feeding mothers better than they do. I love this park, it is – other than this – one of the best theme parks around, anywhere. What's even more disappointing is that Kings Dominion, while better than in the past, has some of the best accommodations for mothers and dads alike. It has a very nice cottage, with several breastfeeding rooms, recliners, water, bottle heaters, toys, television/dvd and more. Busch Gardens really needs to take a good long look at this and do the right thing.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    As a mom you need to feel comfortable with your choices. Sometimes it is not easy to implement them but we do what we can, right?

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    As a mom you need to feel comfortable with your choices. Sometimes it is not easy to implement them but we do what we can, right?

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    This post is priceless to me as a mother and as someone who suffers chronic pain. Knowing if there are places to safely nurse my baby helps me choose where my family of soon 7 vacations. Knowing there isn't often places to sit further solidifies my choices as I often need to sit and rest and if those places are few and far between that makes some places off the list for us.

    I am so sorry you got yelled at, that was uncalled for. I bet the older woman felt like she had few options to change and thus took the nursing room. The man perhaps was frustrated as well, but shouldn't have taken it out on you!

    I hope the park works to make things right, for now, I will not be going and will be sure when it comes up to warn other Mothers and those with mobility limitations.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    This post is priceless to me as a mother and as someone who suffers chronic pain. Knowing if there are places to safely nurse my baby helps me choose where my family of soon 7 vacations. Knowing there isn't often places to sit further solidifies my choices as I often need to sit and rest and if those places are few and far between that makes some places off the list for us.

    I am so sorry you got yelled at, that was uncalled for. I bet the older woman felt like she had few options to change and thus took the nursing room. The man perhaps was frustrated as well, but shouldn't have taken it out on you!

    I hope the park works to make things right, for now, I will not be going and will be sure when it comes up to warn other Mothers and those with mobility limitations.

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    This is unacceptable. No mother should feel like this is their only resort, nor be put through this much trouble. I hope Busch Gardens makes better accommodations for breastfeeding mothers!

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    This is unacceptable. No mother should feel like this is their only resort, nor be put through this much trouble. I hope Busch Gardens makes better accommodations for breastfeeding mothers!

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    I am sorry that was your experience. I have yet to breastfeed at Busch Gardns but a few years ago when I was pregnant with my first I had my first syatica attack at BG (Florida) the staff were very helpful, provides me with a wheelchair and assisted me in first aid. I hope they change their nursing situation ASAP. Good on you for helping the stressed out new mom – while nursing. That is very impressive

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  • September 14, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    I am sorry that was your experience. I have yet to breastfeed at Busch Gardns but a few years ago when I was pregnant with my first I had my first syatica attack at BG (Florida) the staff were very helpful, provides me with a wheelchair and assisted me in first aid. I hope they change their nursing situation ASAP. Good on you for helping the stressed out new mom – while nursing. That is very impressive

    Reply

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