Friday, October 31, 2008

Save Coney And Lola Staar Are Bringing Coney Back!!

In an announcement of immediate release the Save Coney Island group and Lola Staar are bringing back Manhattan that is....and only for one chilly night! They will be rocking the streets of the West Village with their hot pink and glittering float. With dancers, roller skaters, music blasts, and pink fun galore. So make your way down there tonight and join and cheer on the Save Coney Island Revolution.

What time?
Meet up between 6 and 6:30 on Friday, October 31st! We will be having a pre-parade dance party around the Dreamland Float so get there early!! This will be a great opportunity to photograph and interview participants before we embark!!

Where to Meet?
At the Dreamland Roller Rink/Save Coney Island Float (look for the glowing hot pink float!!) on 6th Avenue around Spring Street. We are "Coney Island Group 9"

What to Expect?
The parade steps off at 7 PM from Sixth Avenue at Spring Street, marching straight up Sixth Avenue at a leisurely 1-block-every-5-minute-pace, allowing for performance. The parade ends at 21st and 22nd Streets, about 1 1/4 miles in just over an hour and a half.

'Life On Mars' Lurks In Coney Island

A remake of the BBC television series, "Life on Mars" was being filmed in Coney Island yesterday. According to the Internet Movie Database ( the production stars Harvey Keitel , Michael Imperioli , and Gretchen Mol . The show is described as: this genre-bending crime drama/buddy comedy/sci-fi fantasy revolves around modern-day police detective Sam Tyler, who awakens after a near-fatal car accident to discover that he has been thrown back through time to 1973. Which asks the question; will they somehow pay homage to 70's Coney Island and digitally recreate some of the old rides that stood then like the Thunderbolt, and Tornado.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Coney Events: Masquerade Ball Costume Skate Party

Explore the unknown and raise the spirits of Lust and Coney Island!! Join us for Dreamland's Season Finale featuring The Day of Dead Haunted Masquerade Ball!

Save the Last Spellbound Dance for Dreamland Roller Skating Rink
Saturday, Nov 1st
$12 / $10 (reduced)
$5 Skate Rentals

Flickr Convoy: Lonely Coney Lobster Boy

Image courtesy of Rubys Host / KC Flicker Group

An unsuspecting lonely lobster strolls along the cool fall and windy empty beach of Coney Island...perhaps heading back out to sea after finding less and less here.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Does The City Not Want To 'Imagine Coney'?

The city planner's office has put a few words of warning to the new Coney imagineers, 'Don't think you're gonna mess with our rezoning process' is what basically was said by Amadna Burden in response to the efforts lead by the Municipal Arts society in putting together a team of world economists, designers, Coney leaders, and Coney lovers to go back to the drawing board and dream up a Coney that will keep Coney Island's character. The move is not intended to bring about and offer a new plan but to help out the city think more creatively, something that they've been lacking.

New York Observer writes:

...this weekend, a Department of City Planning spokeswoman sent over a statement from planning director Amanda Burden that effectively fired a shot over the Municipal Art Society's bow, saying that the city welcomes new ideas—but not any that would change or interfere with its own rezoning plan for the area.

"It is imperative that the rezoning process and timeline not be jeopardized by any reconsideration of our proposed rezoning boundaries or urban design parameters," Ms. Burden said in the statement.

The reason? Timing. The city wants to act quickly to rezone the area, starting the seven-month review process by early next year. "[O]therwise the Coney Island amusement area that we know and love will cease to exist," the statement said.

The full statement from Burden is below:

As part of the public planning process, the City has engaged in scores of meetings with a wide variety of local and citywide stakeholders in shaping its current rezoning proposal for a year-round 27-acre amusement district with outdoor and enclosed amusements. We of course welcome innovative ideas for a 21st century destination that keeps and enhances Coney Island's unique edgy character and open accessibility.

However, it is imperative that the rezoning process and timeline not be jeopardized by any reconsideration of our proposed rezoning boundaries or urban design parameters. After two scoping sessions and significant public input, we expect to begin the public approval process in early 2009, which will culminate in a vote on the plan by the City Council in the summer of 2009. It is imperative that this rezoning proceed expeditiously, otherwise the Coney Island amusement area that we know and love will cease to exist. We welcome ideas about how to best design, structure and program a year-round amusement district with an open and accessible Amusement Park as its centerpiece.

Highlighs From Monday's "Imagine Coney" Gathering

As posted on the Coney Island USA message board by Tricia, the Municipal Arts Society gathered a few econmists, designer, and Coney folk to get togehter and "Imagine Coney".

Here is what Tricia posted on the
message board:

The charrette team includes architects, engineers, designers and an economist from France, Denmark, Spain, UK and US whose credits include working with Tivoli and Disney. Their names and websites are listed on the schedule and will probably be up on the project website when it goes live.

For about 4 hours, we listened to remarks from Marty Markowitz, Domenic Recchia, the EDC, the CIDC, CB13, Boro Prez’s office, the Aquarium, Parks Dept , Creative Time, Astella and South Brooklyn Youth Consortium. Charles Denson and Dick Zigun gave presentations similar to their recent talks at MAS. A rep from Taconic gave a talk. Thor Equities was listed on the schedule but apparently was a no show.

Marty talked about making the Parachute Jump “as blingy as we can” (phase 2 of lighting) and also the amphitheatre in Asser Levy. Jon Benguiat, an architect and planner from Marty’s office gave a great presentation with many renderings of the amphitheatre for Asser Levy Park. There were 3 possible designs. The most favored is nicknamed the potato chip design for the shape of the roof. During the offseason it can be used for skating or other uses. Lots of photographers taking pics so I’m sure some will show up on the web.

Recchia’s remarks were mostly about the beginnings of the CIDC and money that he’d gotten for projects such as the new community center and Dreier Offerman Park. Not much mention of the amusement area except obliquely. He said: “I urge them [the CIDC] to go back to the drawing board to accommodate those who have invested heavily in the community.”

Lynn Kelly mentioned that for the first time the CIDC would have a booth at IAAPA, the amusement industry trade show in Orlando in November. That could be good news for the future of amusements in Coney.

We all hope that with the help of MAS an effort in the right direction will actually make a difference. Though the city needs to reciprocate in some way if what comes out of this is reasonable. The words from the city planner's office already sound like conflict.

Image courtesy of
Mike Pesce (

Flickr Convoy: Jones Walk Preconstruction?

Image courtesy of Pablo57 / KC Flickr Group

Utility marking up and down Jones Walk in Coney Island spurs some speculation about some sort of construction looming. No rumors or any work have yet come up, though some buzz about Astroland coming back to life for another three years with or without the Alberts has been lurking around. That's all we'll say at this point.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Could The Municipal Arts Society Be The Ones To Save Coney?

Image by NYC DCP

With what many of us Coney lovers have only dreamed of, the Municipal Arts Society may have the power to achieve. In recent years many of us expressed our wishes and dreams over message boards and blogs but fell short of being too scattered. Now with the influence of a top organization of the Municipal Arts Society we can only hope that a place to harness the right imagination needed by talented experts and the public, a new vision will emerge that can muster the power to make a difference and really save the Coney Island character and spirit.

New York Observer writes:

Now, the Municipal Art Society is stepping deep into the muck, with plans on Monday to kick off its own charrette—a pow-wow of designers and amusement experts—as part of its larger recent focus on the Coney issue.

The following is the release by MAS:
Effort Seeks to Identify Designs, Uses & Events
for Long Term and Interim Development

The Municipal Art Society, working with a team of world-class architects, amusement designers and economists, will launch an initiative to develop new ideas for the design and programming of Coney Island this Monday, October 27 2008.

Titled "Imagine Coney," the new initiative will feature a global Web-based call for ideas, and a charrette (an intense design workshop) featuring international amusement and design experts from Tivoli Gardens in Denmark, Broadway theater in New York City, and former Disney executives.

MAS hopes that by leveraging global ideas and creativity it can help identify the novel uses that will spark new life in Coney Island and build on the remarkable strides Mayor Bloomberg has made toward a revitalized Coney Island. The charrette team will draw from creative and entrepreneurial ideas submitted during public workshops and on a Web-based call for ideas that will be open to all.

The team will participate in a briefing session on Coney Island on Monday, October 27 from 9 am - 12 pm with Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz, the Coney Island Development Corporation, the Department of City Planning, Coney Island USA, the Astella Development Corporation, the New York Aquarium, Creative Time, and other groups and local stakeholders. The team will return on November 13 and 14 for the charrette, and the results will be publicly presented on November 17.

To point out, a comment left on the New York Observer site for this post reads:

sadly, the prospects for Coney are doomed by the nearby housing projects.the area has long been depressed and unsafe and until the projects disappear its prospects remain dim

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Coney Vid: Happy Hour Guys At The Freak Bar

The Happy Hour Guys at the Sideshow Bar

The Guys make another stop at Coney Island, and the Sideshow Bar, part of the Coney Island USA complex! Check them out at, and as always, more cool stuff at

Posted by back40films [YouTube]

Sarah Palin Spotted At Coney Island?

Image courtesy of Rubys Host / KC Flickr Group

Rubys Host spots armed forces helicopters whizzing by over over the Coney Island shore with what appears to be Sara Palin returning to airport after Saturday Night Live tapping in New York City this past weekend.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Coney Vid: CNN iReport "Astroland's Last Day"

CNN iReport video by Trevor Dougherty with Tricia Vita of The Coney Island History Project on Astroland's closing.

Astroland's Last Day

iReporters reflect on the storied past of this infamous amusement park on New York's Coney Island.

Coney Events: Dreamland Dance And Skate Off

Roller Skate Dance OFF! Winners will be prominently featured on the Dreamland Float in the worldly televised and widely photographed Halloween Parade!

Dance & Skate Off
Saturday Oct 25th

10:00 PM
ADMISSION: Regular Admission Price, $12 / $10 (Reduced)
on the Coney Island Boardwalk

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Flickr Convoy: Tea Cups

Image courtesy of Pablo57 / KC Flickr Goup

Regarding the last post about rides looking like they're ready to be shipped off brought on some e-mails noting that we can't assume so fast that these rides are leaving due to the fact that some rides are always packed up during the winter for the closed season. So, weather they are just hibernating or not, they mostly likely won't be waking up in Astroland ever again! Not in this Astroland, anyway.

Monday, October 20, 2008

More Astroland Rides Packing

Image courtesy of Mr Jonsey PabloJonsey (CIUSA board)

As spotted by Coney Island USA message board poster, Mr Jonsey PabloJonsey, the Astroland Tea Cup rides has been packed and ready to be shipped off, it seems. Posters indicated that many photographs and video have been taken lately of Astroland starts to show signs of leaving us. So far the Breakdancer rides has been shipped of the lot.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Coney Vid: Completed Coney Is. USA Freak Bar

Coney Island USA New Freak Bar: The Completed Project

Architect Philip Tusa's design for Coney Island USA's New Freak Bar & Museum Gift Shop is now completed and photographed by famed architectural photographer, Paul Warchol.

Posted by
pmtarch [YouTube]

"Ugly Betty" Coney Isalnd Episode Vid

Here are scenes from "Ugly Betty" tv series shot in Coney Island this summer.

Ugly Betty In Coney Island

Posted by
FanciullaSelene [YouTube]

Friday, October 17, 2008

Coney Rezoning: City Parkland Woes

The Brooklyn Paper who often has been pro Thor in the development saga of Coney Island is fearful of the city's push for 'parkland' conversion of Coney Island acreage. Since 'Parkland' status leaves its areas vulnerable to the whims of the city, we should be weary that once the areas convert to 'parkland' the city could change their minds and utilize the parkland for anything they choose. If one amusement entity were to come and operate on the nine acre space and they fail, another administration could come around and place something else in its place. At this point the Mayor's plan calls for a very small acre to include outdoor amusements squeezed inside larger areas of residential and corporate commercial outlets. And this is what those who want to protect the character of Coney Island are against.

The Brooklyn Paper writes:

Under questioning for The Brooklyn Paper, city officials admitted this week that if the areaa is rezoned as "parkland", virtually anything can be built there. The city zoning resolution does not require "parkland" to be set aside as green space, to be devoid of chimerical activity or , indeed , to be off-limits to housing development.

Actually, all it does is put such "parkland" under the sole control of the mayor's office. No rezoning hearing or public review process will kick in if the city later wants to build a hotel or a conference center or housing or a shopping mall in the so-called "people's playground".

Photo from
AP Photo by Seth Wenig

Bloomy's Coney Baloney [The Brooklyn Paper]

Coney Events: Strangelove At Dreamland

From the Dreamland Roller Skating Rink website:

Long Live the 80s New Wave! Words very are unnecessary as you let your amorous rock star heart speak for itself and skate to the soundscape of Depeche Mode and other great bands from the glorious New Wave / New Romantic Era!

Strangelove Skate Party!!
Saturday, October 18th

$12 ($10 reduced) admission / $5 Skate Rentals
21 and Over!
at Lola Staar's Dreamland Roller Skating Rink
on the Coney Island Boardwalk

Coney Vid: Coney Island Surf & Turf Grill

Coney Island Surf & Turf Grill

Coney Island Surf & Turf Grill, in the world-famous Coney Island in New York, is a restaurant that features some of the area's juiciest steak and seafood. Hanger steaks and shell steaks are their specialties, as are their delicious grilled lobster tail and garlicky shrimp scampi. Other menu items include pizza margherita, crisp Greek salads, homemade manicotti and saucy meatball subs.

Posted by
yellowpages [YouTube]

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Reminder: 2008 Coney Island Fall Auction

A benefit for Coney Island USA!
Featuring Special Guest Honoree George SheaChair of the International Federation of Competitive Eating

The 2008 Coney Island USA Fall Auction
Monday November, 3rd 2008

7:00pm -10:00pm
Rebel NYC
251 West 30th street (between 7th and 8th avenues)
7:00 pm
Cocktails Hors d’oeuvres Silent auction
8:00 pm Live music and performances by Julie Atlas Muz, Prof. Jo Boobs and Angie Pontani
9:00 pm Live auction by Arlan Ettinger of Guernsey’s auction house

Dress Code Sideshow Chic

All Tickets are $40
Click here to buy tickets in advance.

City Buys One Acre Of Deno's Wonder Wheel Park

The city's aggressive move to make their plans to rezone Coney Island come through has now purchased one acre of Deno's Wonder Wheel Amusement Park for $11 million dollars. In a press release from the New York Economic Development Corporation stating the city has a deal with the Ward Realty Corp. to acquire the parcel of land.

The following is the press release by the NYEDC:


Deal Signifies First Major Step for the City in Acquiring Properties within Coney Island’s Amusement Core.

New York City, October 15, 2008 – New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) today announced that it has signed a property acquisition agreement with Ward Realty Corp. to acquire approximately one acre in the amusement core in Coney Island, Brooklyn. The deal is the first of what NYCEDC expects to be a series of land acquisitions in the coming months as the City proceeds with its vision to create a 21st century entertainment destination and protect Coney Island’s amusement legacy in perpetuity. The current tenant, Wonder Wheel Park maintains a lease to operate on the property for a term of 12 years, through 2020.

The Ward Realty Corp. site is located within the nine-acre area the City has designated to be mapped as parkland. Under the City’s comprehensive rezoning plan for the area, the parkland will establish a base for developing new year-round indoor
and outdoor amusement uses, while still maintaining Coney Island’s unique character. The acquisition the Ward site will bring the total amount of city-owned property within the footprint to about four acres.

“The acquisition of the Ward property provides further evidence of the City’s commitment to preserve Coney Island’s unique heritage and protect the amusements in perpetuity,” said Seth W. Pinsky, President, NYCEDC. “This important deal brings us one step closer to our twin goals of maintaining what is best about Coney Island, while simultaneously building a vibrant, modern mixed-use community.”

In pursuit of its long-term goal, NYCEDC continues to engage in active negotiations with the remaining landowners to consolidate the rest of the nine acre site. Upon completion of the public approval process, there will be a total of 12 acres of parkland to be devoted to amusement uses in Coney Island, including the city-owned Cyclone roller coaster and Steeplechase Park, which are already mapped as parkland.

The City intends to re-develop the neighborhood surrounding the amusements by bringing much needed infrastructure improvements, creating affordable housing and
fostering economic activity that will create jobs and opportunities for local residents. The project will provide over 20,000 construction jobs and thousands of permanent jobs.

“William J. Ward’s vision for Coney Island was an inspiration to all who have passed through this beloved area,” said Lynn Kelly, President, Coney Island Development Corporation. “This agreement is much more than the purchase of property, but an opportunity to expand on his legacy and preserve Coney Island as an amusement destination for generations to come.”

“Since the 1870’s, William J. Ward, the original owner of this amusement park and rides, had great hopes for Coney Island. Now, because of the vision of Mayor Bloomberg and NYCEDC, those hopes will flourish forever,” said Christopher F. (Ward) McGratty, Chairman & CEO, Ward Realty Corp. “We are confident that with the consummation of this contract, a true legacy of entertainment and happiness in Coney Island will remain in perpetuity for all to enjoy. Not just for the New Yorkers from the five boroughs, but most especially for Brooklynites around the world!”

Under the terms of the purchase agreement, the Ward family, the oldest, continuous landowner in Coney Island, has agreed to have NYCEDC acquire roughly one acre of land for $11 million.

About NYCEDC New York City Economic Development Corporation is the City’s primary vehicle for promoting economic growth in each of the five boroughs. NYCEDC’s mission is to stimulate growth through expansion and redevelopment programs that encourage investment, generate prosperity and strengthen the City’s competitive position. NYCEDC serves as an advocate to the business community by building relationships with companies that allow them to take advantage of New York City’s many opportunities.

You can follow the discussion at the Coney Island USA message board.

Coney Island Film Festival: Best Made In Coney Winner

"Coney Island Saved Me!" Winner of the Best "Made in Coney Island" Film at the 2008 Coney Island Film Festival

"Coney Island Saved Me!" by Amanda JencsikWinner of the Best "Made in Coney Island" Film at the 2008

Posted by
TheChrisShow [YouTube]

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Flickr Convoy: Another Boardwalk Sunset

Image courtesy of Rubys Host / KC Flickr Group

As the city heads on aggressively with their plans or rezoning and buying up more Coney amusement property we peer into these sunsets and hope they aren't the last for a Coney we love.

Join the
Kinetic Carnival Flickr Group to add your Coney Island images and have them featured on this blog.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

A Flood Of Almost Bliblical Porportions Inundates America's Playground

The Weather Channel's documentary program "It Could Happen Tomorow" depicts the possibility that scientists predicts could happen in the next couple of years when the next big hurricane travel up the east coast could head directly for New York City.
The hurricane's eye invades New York Bay. Pushing along a three-story high wall of water...the massive storm surge. A flood of almost biblical proportions inundates America's Playground, wiping out its storied past.

clear here to see video

Monday, October 13, 2008

Goodbye Deno's Thunderbolt

Image courtesy of amg2000 (

Looks like the popular Thunderbolt ride at Deno's Wonder Wheel Amusement Park is sold, packed and ready to be shipped off. The two images below, by Coney Island USA message board poster, Capt_Nemo who keeps a good eye on what pops up in Coney Island, shows the Thunderbolt dismantled and compressed. There is no knowledge at this point why Deno's decided to sell their one of their most popular rides before the season has closed.

Image insert above courtesy of
Chado (

Images above courtesy of Capt_Nemo (CIUSA message board)

Images above courtesy of Capt_Nemo (CIUSA message board)

Thor Equities Illegal Dumping Or Simply An Eye Sore?

Coney Island roving eye and Coney Island USA message board poster, Capt_Nemo catches what he thinks may be illegal dumpling by Thor Equities on their Stillwell Avenue lot and hopes this is not the dire future of what's in store of Astroland gone and off it premise.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Coney Vid: B&B Carousell Restoration

Here's a really short time lapse video of part of the restoration process for the B&B Carousel.

From the Coney Island Development Corporation website:

The B&B Carousell, Coney Island’s last remaining historic carousel, will be restored and relocated to become the centerpiece of Steeplechase Plaza. The 40-horse carousel was acquired by the City in 2005.

B&B Carousell restoration is currently underway. The refurbished carousel will reinstalled in Steeplechase Plaza in a new custom-designed pavilion on the Boardwalk.

Coney Events: Coney Island Farmer's Market

From the Coney Island Fun Guide website:

The Astella Development Corporation sponsors a farmer's market every Sunday from July 13 through November 9, from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm, at Surf Avenue and West 17th Street. Upstate famers sell fruits and vegetables. WIC and senior vouchers are accepted.

Astella Development Corporation is a not-for-profit community based organization dedicated to providing affordable housing, commercial revitalization, & economic development, and improving the quality of life in Coney Island, Brooklyn.

Brought to you by the Astella Development Corporation

Coney Island Farmer's Market
Sunday, October 12, 2008

9:00 AM - 3:00 PM
at W. 17 St. & Surf Ave., 11224

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Coney Vid: Roscoe Holcomb "Coney Isle"

Roscoe Holcomb - Coney Isle

Recorded in New York City 1964. The original is by Frank Hutchinson (around 1927). Roscoe hadn't heard of him and associated the song with the amusement park by this name near Cincinnati where Roscoe worked during WWII.

Posted by
Horschtiborscht [YouTube]

Coney Island At The CrossRoads Presentation Video

If you did not attend the Municipal Arts Society's "Coney Island At The Crossroads" event this past September 17th then you can watch the panel's presentation in the video here brought to you by Thirteen Forum.

The City of New York’s Comprehensive Development and Rezoning Plan for Coney Island would reduce to 9 acres from 15 a city-owned open-air amusement park north of the Boardwalk between KeySpan Park and the New York Aquarium. It would transform the area into a year-round entertainment district, with abundant retail and as many as 5,000 apartments along Surf Ave. Following the presentation of the plan, a anel with varied perspectives responds to the city’s proposal. Moderators include Kent Barwick, president, Municipal Art Society; and Jonathan Bowles, director of the Center for an Urban Future. Participants include Dick Zigun, found of Coney Island USA; Purnima Kapur, director, NYC Department of City Planning, Brooklyn Office; Lynn Kelly, president, Coney Island Development Corporation; Carol Hall Albert, owner, Astroland; Sheryl Robertson, director, South Brooklyn Youth Consortium. This event was held at the Municipal Arts Society.

Clarification Of Coney Rezoning Process

In an email sent to KC from Purnima Kapur's office, Jennifer Torres: Deputy Press Secretary clarifies some misinformation in our last post that was obtained through an article in the News. Her email is posted here in its entirety in hopes that it will clarify this quite detailed process.

Torres writes:

Here's some background information to correct the recent post: The rezoning proposal is not about to head into the City's formal land use process (ULURP). Certification is not targeted for October 14th. Certification of all actions associated with the comprehensive Coney Island rezoning plan will take place together in early 2009.

The mapping application referenced in the article is a technical milestone within the larger comprehensive plan for Coney Island, it will accompany other actions within the Coney Island rezoning that the City is aiming to certify in early 2009.

On October 14th, DCP will hold an interagency mapping conference to review the technical aspects of the application, which include: establishing a new street system, related grade changes,new park additions, etc.. All relevant agencies and utility companies are invited to this meeting. Although the public does not attend these technical meetings, CB13 has been invited to participate and comment on the technical aspects of the mapping application. The comments received at this meeting will be reviewed and if any changes are needed as a result, the application will be modified to reflect those.

Following the Interagency conference, the mapping application will be reviewed in detail by the Borough President's Topographical Unit to finalize the technical details of the application prior to DCP's Certification of the application as complete and entering into ULURP. Once the application is certified, there will be opportunities for public comment on this portion of the application as well as others going forward.

The City has not been invited to an CB 13 executive committee meeting next week to present/discuss the rezoning proposal (or even the mapping application).

Thanks so much
All the best,

Coney Events: Phantom Of The Presidential Wax Museum

Poster Design by Jamie Coville

From the Coney Island USA website:

PHANTOM OF THE PRESIDENTIAL WAX MUSEUM is an interactive show (allow 45 minutes for the complete experience) that tours various rooms at the Coney Island Sideshows by the Seashore building generally not available to the public such as the creepy basement, back stairs, etc.

CREEPSHOW AT THE FREAKSHOW is Coney Island’s only Halloween extravaganza and one of the best haunted tours in all of New York City. Come see what the New York Press called "not only the best and wildest haunted house in town, but the smartest as well."

DAILY, October 17th - 31st

Mondays - Thursdays: 7-10 PM
Fridays: 7-11 PM
Saturdays: 4-11 PM
Sundays: 4-10 PM
$10 ADULTS $5 KIDS (Not Recommended for Small Children)
Halloween Friday, October 31st ONLY
6-12 PM
All Tickets $15 - includes midnite Horror Movie Party!
at Sideshows By The Seashore
Corner of Surf and West 12th Street
See the
website for full details.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Coney Vid: Save Coney Island: The Movie - Fan Review

Save Coney Island: The Movie - Fan Review

After the 8th annual Coney Island Film Festival screening of Save Coney Island, audience members were asked what they thought of the film.

Posted by
SaveConeyIslandMovie [YouTube]

Hop On The Dreamland Float At This Year's Village Halloween Parade

Hop on over to the Dreamland Roller Skating Rink website and see all the details for the float and parade down the West Village in NYC for the 95th Annual Village Halloween Parade!

Astroland Joins Past Coney Relics Into Memory Lane

Image courtesy of malarchie (

It seems that only a miracle or a storyline out of a Coney comic book could save Astroland for another return, but the city has not shown interest in stepping in to save the park by helping facilitate a lease agreement between the park's owner, Carol Albert and landlord Thor Equities until a permanent amusement area is created by city's redevelopment plan. But the city did not want to meddle in a private transaction.

Fears of a blighted Coney Island without Astroland next summer are intense, and some fear that Dennis Vourderis’ Wonder Wheel Park will become the next to sell.

Vourderis told this newspaper that Thor Equities and its principal Joe Sitt have routinely sought to buy him out, but that he didn’t like the idea of one person controlling all of Coney Island.

It seems the city has never placed much care about Astroland since it pressured them the park to sell as a result of the city favoring Thor Equities. Astroland had full financial backing and drawn out plans for a big year-round development plans but was "instead shunted aside", said Charles Denson, of the Coney Island History Project.

In response CIDC's president, Lynn Kelly tells the Bay News, “The city has been working with the landowners in the Coney Island amusement area to preserve the integrity and history of this storied destination since the strategic plan was first initiated in 2005,” Kelly said. “Astroland’s sale took place prior to the rezoning going through, which barred them from bringing any plans for development to fruition.”

So, unless some miracle comes out of Coney Island Astroland will surely slip into memory lane along with Steeplechase, Luna Park, Dreamland, and other Coney Island relic attractions and parks of the past.

Hope fading fast for Astroland []

You can follow the discussion at the
Coney Island USA message board.

Coney's Rezoning Process Forges Ahead

The city's plan for the Coney Island redevelopment marches on as it enters the Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP). A gathering by Community Board 13 was held this past Monday, October 6th with some city officials and CIDC members prior to a certification meeting at the Department of City Planning on October 14th. / Bay News writes:

Community Board 13 Chair Marion Cleaver said that she will enter next week’s meeting with an open mind, but that she is nonetheless “torn” over the city’s rezoning proposal.

“To me [there should be] more amusements,” Cleaver said. “I understand the reasoning behind the residential component of it but looking at Coney Island with everything almost gone and trying to envision Astroland gone is sad.”

Coney rezone moving ahead - Community Board 13 to hold certification meet with city []

Coney Island Author Michael Immerso Has Faith In Coney's Future

"Coney Island: The people's playground" by author Michael Immerso talks about the present and future of the controversial Coney Island redevelopment saga. As a strong believer in amusements to stay the central theme of the future Coney Island he is also optimistic that it will rise out of all this as it should: a first amusements and year-round attractions to delight future generations to come.

Mr. Immerso writes in the
Wall Street Journal:
New York's goal of making Coney a year-round tourist destination is worthy of support -- but not in a way that leaves insufficient space for seasonal attractions and amusements that have become synonymous with Coney Island. The city hasn't yet struck a proper balance. Under the current plan, too little land is allotted for the outdoor amusements, arcades and game stands that have long been Coney Island summer staples. The redevelopment zone comprises some 47 acres, and with the right zoning there can be ample space for year-round attractions without confining classic Coney Island amusements to a fraction of that area.
* * * * * * *

Eighty years ago, Giuseppe Cautella wrote: "When you bathe at Coney Island you bathe in the American Jordan. Democracy meets here and has its first interview skin to skin." I do not doubt that a new Coney Island will emerge with first-rate amusements and year-round attractions to delight future generations, but we must, above all, respect Coney Island's storied past and its promise of affordable fun for the masses. That promise is the very heart and soul of Coney Island.

Coney Island's Crossroads [Wall Street Journal]

Another Coney Island Wedding

Here's to Frank and Natalie for loving Coney Island so much they decided to make their wedding there.

We wrote our own vows (which included a high five in the middle). We had rings custom made out of imprints of sand, shells, and boardwalk we collected at Coney Island. Our recessional music ("Be My Baby") wasn't working and, instead, the entire audience stomped and clapped the classic girl pop drum beat and sang (amazing!)

Out of the ordinary weddings! [LiveJournal]

Flickr Convoy: Coney Island Boardwalk Sunset

Image courtesy of Rubys Host / KC Flickr Group

A ominously beautiful October 3rd sunset on the Coney Island boardwalk.

Join the Kinetic Carnival Flickr Group to add your Coney Island images and have them featured on this blog.

Coney Vid: Coney Island Tobias Vethake

Coney Island Tobias Vethake

This is Tobias Vethake's soundtrack to the film Coney Island. It is part of an experiment where one film gets many soundtracks to see what sound can do to the feel of a film.

Posted by
ConeyIslandSounds [YouTube]

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Coney Events: Party Like it's 1929 At Dreamland

From the Dreamland Roller Skating Rink Events:

Join us for a Fabulous 1920's - 1940's Jumpin' Jitterbuggin' Swing Remixed Extravaganza! In 1929 when the Stock Market Crashed, The Ballrooms of NYC were alive and booming with dancers doing The Lindy Hop and Jitterbug and other Big Band dances. Come to skate, come to dance, it will be a party to remember. Live Dance performances and DJ P Lindy from will be in the DJ booth with a Swing Remixed Collection that will keep the skaters skating and dancers groovin! The evening begins with solid standards of the Swing era and then shifts to Fat and Jazzy Swing Remixed dance music. Prizes for those best dressed in the era.

Visit Paolo Swings Website!

Party Like it's 1929!!
Friday Oct 10th

$12 ($10 reduced) admission / $5 Skate Rentals
at the Dreamland Roller Skating Rink
on the famous Coney Island Boardwalk

Monday, October 06, 2008

City Planner Claims To Be On Coneyers Side

Image courtesy of Adams for News

While NY City Planner's Brooklyn Office director, Purnima Kapur, says she's devoted to Brooklyn residents and has their interest in mind in terms of the Coney Island's redevelopment, she fails to recognize that most of Coney Island denizens are opposed to their revised plans when it comes to diminishing the amusement area to a mere nine acres in which she says will include rides. What will this small 'amusement' area really be composed of other than small rides that could fit there?

New York Daily News writes:

"It's gritty, it's kitschy, it's not Disney, it's got its Brooklyn identity and we don't want to lose that," she says, her dark hair and eyes shining.

* * * * * * *

"Developers are looking at the bottom line, and my job is to make sure the public interest is protected."

The plan also calls for 'entertainment retail' which is what most Coney enthusiasts and fans don't want here. That is why most people are trying to save what already is a small area and keep it devoted to amusements. But how can amusements sustain itself in all other parcels that have gone to furniture stores and other Russian outlets still financially survive? That's the tough and real question that no one seems to have answered. Though Astroand was able to survive, until the city first placed pressure on them and which eventually resulted in Astroland's closure, and with Deno's and other small amusement operators struggling through each season; Coney Island showed many pockets of non-amusements which tarnished our fabled place by the sea.

The small people of yesteryear who came to Coney Island with dreams to make things happen and devote themselves to Coney Island through dedication and determination are not be found in today's world. Or are they? Coney Island needs those kinds of people to keep that spirit of individuality that has characterized it throughout its long history, alive. Is it really impossible? Are they really not around any more? Not true. There is one. And here name is Lola Staar!

City planner keeps Brooklyn's public interest in mind [NY Daily News]

Filmmakers Praise The Coney Film Festival

Photo credit: Left Norman Blake, Right Katrina del Mar. All rights reserved.

This year's filmmakers and a few actors give praise and wonderful comments to the awesome work by festival director, Rob Leddy and his crew for the 8th Annual 2008 Coney Island Film Festival. Here's a comment from Peter LiPera who premiered his documentary, "Save Coney Island - the movie" at this year's festival.

I would first like to thank Rob Leddy, for a wonderful job with the festival. From opening night, booze, burlesque and sideshows, till the closing ceremony, bumper cars, everything was true to the Coney Island spirit. The Coney Island Film Festival is truly good until the last drop! 125 films with a beach and boardwalk right down the street... I mean what more can you ask for in a festival? Thank you to everyone involved with the magical weekend!

Peter LiPera - "Save Coney Island".