Wednesday, September 30, 2009

2009 Coney Island Film Festival Line Up For Friday Oct. 2nd

Friday, October 2, 2009
7:30 pm

Opening Night Screening: Step Right Up & The Prince of Mermaid Avenue

"Step Right Up"
Luke Marshall, Silver Spring, MD, Doc Short, 28 Minutes, World Premiere!

Welcome to a world where the bizarre and the everyday meet. A world where hammering a nail into your head is done in front of an audience. A world where men and women will risk injury or death to swallow a sword. This is the world of the sideshow!

"The Prince Of Mermaid Avenue"
Charles Denson , Brooklyn, NY, Documentary Feature, 60 minutes, World Premiere!

The story of Jimmy Prince, owner of Major Meats on Mermaid Avenue, who retired after a sixty-year run as an anchor of the community.

Friday, October 2, 2009
9:30 pm

Opening Night Party at the Coney Island USA Freak Bar and Sideshows By The Seashore! Hosted by The Great Fredini. Live performances by Legs Malone, Nasty Canasta, Miss Cherry Delight, Cherry Pits, Billy The Id, Gary Ray, Scott

9th Annual Coney Island Film Festival
October 2-4, 2009
at Sideshows By The Seashore and The Coney Island Museum
in the historic Brooklyn neighborhood Coney Island, New York!

For full ticketing and scheduling information visit the Coney Island Film Festival website.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Coney Events: Chol Hamoed At Coney Island

Direct from Coney Island USA:
Come celebrate the holiday of Sukkot at Coney Island USA's Sideshows by the Seashore with two great nights of “Jewish-Centric” sideshow, magic and variety entertainment. ’Meshuggena Magic for the Whole Mishpacha’ is the brainchild of Dick Zigun, Founder of Coney Island USA, and a nice Jewish Boy; as well as Adam Rinn, a Bar Mitzvahed magician, entertainer and Dean of Coney Island USA’s Sideshow School.

Wednesday, October 7, 4:30pm Show with Adam Rinn and Scott BakerWednesday October 7, 7:00pm Show with Adam Rinn and BenjiliniJeremy the Magician and David ‘the Kid’ Jaison will perform close up magic in the bar area during intermission

Thursday October 8, 4:30pm and 7:00pm. Both shows will feature Adam Rinn and Chris McDaniel, Jeremy the Magician and David ‘the Kid’ Jaison will perform close up magic in the bar area during intermission

Chol Hamoed at Coney Island!
Wednesday, October 7th & Thursday October 8th

Ticket prices are as follows:
$9.00 Adults
Children under 12
at Sideshows By The Seashore
corner of Surf and West 12th street

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Flickr Convoy: Rockbathing On The Coney Beach

Image courtesy of Pablo 57 / KC Flickr Group

With the a northern summer that faded fast this season desperate Coney goers find new ways to get their last tan by laying on a hot rock one side at a time.

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

Friday, September 25, 2009

Coney-esque Art Adorns NY Subway Station

After a long wait the Manhattan Transit Authority has finally installed a sculpt by artist Deborah Masters along parts of the wall and corners of the subways station at Ocean Parkway / Brighton Beach. The sculpt attached to the concrete wall depicts Coney goers in summer

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Coney Events: The Moulin Rouge On Wheels

Coney's fabulous fab invites you to smear on a little rouge and Moulin down to the Dreamland Roller Rink at the world famous Coney Island boardwalk for the last theme party of the season. So if you haven't put on the wheels for Coney here are one of you last chances for the year. The rink closes for the winter the following day.

Dreamland Roller Rink
Moulin Rouge Skate Party
Last Saturday Theme Party of 2009
September, 26th 2009
8 pm to 12 am
Admission: $10 if you dress in Moulin Rouge, Burlesque, or vaudeville attire
$5 Skate Rentals or bring your own
at the landmark Childs Building on the Coney Island Boardwalk

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Last Week To Place Bids On The Coney Funny Face Auction

From Coney Island USA:
Due to overwhelming demand for our fabulous Funny Faces, CIUSA is opening the online Funny Face auction for one more week only. Ladies and gentleman, this is your absolute last chance to claim your favorite, one of a kind Funny Face. Besides the joy you’ll feel in snagging your favorite smiling guy/s, you can also take heart in knowing that all proceeds from this auction will go directly towards supporting Coney Island USA’s unique arts programming and the fight to preserve the historic amusement district of Coney Island. So, ladies and gentleman bid early and often at Auction ends Tuesday, September 29th at 9pm ET.

These are the last Funny Faces of their kind and your last chance to take them home! Good luck and happy bidding!

Image courtesy of
marinazurkow (

Monday, September 21, 2009

Coney Pizza Place To Re-Open Mid October

Image courtesy of timkang (

The Coney Island summer season this year still thrived considering the embarrassing hishaps of Thor Equities and the first time in almost four decades that Astroland was not here. Coney summer goers did do without another Coney iconic place: the pizza place..."Totonno's Pizza.

According to the owners of Totonno's Pizza which was damaged in a fire last March will reopen sometime around mid-October. Though the fire did cause some damage, the closure was for reasons of the buildings structure as city inspection recognized. The building, located at 1524 Neptune Avenue, was found to be compromised to the degree that it couldn't support the weight of the oven it housed.

But renovations have been underway all summer so expect to grab yourself a warm slice this fall and winter.

Coney Events: "New York, Then And Now" Art Exhibit

On display at the ACA Galleries are works celebrating New York. The "New York: Then and Now, " exhibit showcases a large group that celebrates New York. Above is the "Swingin', Stationary", 32" X 38", on view along with 3 other Coney Island cut paper works by Philomena Marano.

Exhibit is titled: "New York: Then and Now, "
running thru October 10, 2009
at ACA Galleries
529 West 20th Street, New York, NY
5th floor.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Flickr Convoy: The Lizardman

Image courtesy of Pablo57 / KC Flickr Group

The one and only Lizardman. A current cast member of the Coney Island USA Circus Sideshow. Catch Lizardman and more bizarro at the Sideshows by the Seashore.

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

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Coney Events: The 7th Annual Miss Coney Island Pageant

From Coney Island USA:

Rita MenweepFifi DupreeGigi LaFemmeQueen La QuefaLittle Miss ixxPandoraLeroi the Girl BoiGlenn MarlaMinnie TonkaHosted By The Great Fredini. Musical Accompaniment By BBQ Bob & the Spare Ribs

Burlesque at the Beach
Bambi Presents:
The 7th Annual Miss Coney Island Pageant
Friday, Sepetember 18, 2009

10 pm
at the Sideshows By The Seashore
corner of Surf and West 12th street

Coney Island Film Festival Poster Released

This year's poster for the Coney Island Film Festival is designed by Toni-Lee Sangastiano. The 9th Annual Coney Island Film Festival will be held October 2-4, 2009. Advanced online ticketing now live. Click here for more information and for ticket purchase.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Reminder: Funny Face Auction Closes Today

Today at 1pm is the deadline for bidding on the Funny Face Project auction.

Just a friendly reminder that online bidding for the Funny Face Project will close at 1pm sharp on Wed. September 16th. Keep in mind that the final bid showdown will continue live that night from 7-10pm at the closing night reception of the Funny Face Project at the Jonathan O’Hara Gallery (41 East 57th Street, Suite 1302 between Park and Madison Avenues).

But wait, if online bidding closes at 1pm and live bidding continues that night, how can you ensure that you’ll be the last bid standing and take home your favorite fabulous Funny Face?

Image courtesy of Fred Kahl

Friday, September 11, 2009

Coney Events: The Second Annual Coney Island Beard and Moustache Competition

Image courtesy of Norman Blake

From the Coney Island USA press release:

Donny Vomit Presents
The Second Annual Coney Island Beard and Moustache Competition
Tomorrow, Saturday Sep. 12th at
Sideshows By The Seashore Theater
With Special Guest Jennifer Miller the Bearded Lady

Brooklyn’s hairiest competition is coming soon. The Second Annual Coney Island Beard And Moustache Competition will be taking place on September 12th at the Sideshows By The Seashore Theater. In celebration of facial hair of the strange the odd, weird and bizarre. No stache is too short no beard is too big.

The festivities will begin at 6pm at The Freak Bar with music by banjo virtuoso Curtis Eller. Strait Razor Shaves by Tonsorial Artist Michael W. Haar. Photo registration will also take place for all contestants. The Variety and Awards show will begin at 8pm featuring New York’s finest talent including Donny Vomit the Gentleman Oddity, Albert Cadabra the Great Deceiver. Special guest performer Jennifer Miller the Bearded Lady will also be in attendance. A great time to be had by all.

This year will be awarding best natural beard, best styled beard. Best natural moustache, Best styled moustache, Best in show. New this year is Worst in Show and Best Female Fake Beard or Stache.

Donny Vomit Presents
The Second Annual Coney Island Beard and Moustache
Saturday Sep. 12th
Tickets $10
at the Sideshows By The Seashore Theater
1208 Surf Ave, Coney Island
Registration and Pre-Show 6pm Variety and Awards Show

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Brighton Dreaming: Now That's An Amusement Pier!

In honor of Coney Island's long lost beloved Dreamland Pier which a part of its history in the form of a bell that delightfully greeted passengers disembarking at Coney Island, was brought to the surface this week, we dare not only dream of a magnificent pier for Coney Island...we simply set our course across the seas to the far reaches of England...a land beyond Coney Island.

A glorious amusement pier in Brighton Beach. But no not Brooklyn’s Brighton but the original. Original in name. Brighton England that is. A seaside extravagance that without making any efforts places today’s Coney Island as a bare bones relic of its past - brittle and corroded like the skeletal remains of a dead roller coaster. The fabled seaside in Brooklyn, though a true originator, sits awaiting promises that never materialize only to buckle under the kind of greed that is choking our American cities. However, Europe has a different way of seeing things. A different way of living. Not only boasting another witching seaside extravagance called Blackpool, which was featured here in 2007 and even larger than Brighton, but England and the rest of Europe is better at keeping their flair and nostalgia than us.

(click image to enlarge)

Strutting out majestically at 1,722 feet in length and acknowledged as the finest pier ever built, The Brighton Pier which opened in 1899 (more officially known as the Marine Palace Pier or the Brighton Marine Palace and Pier) was once considered a seedy and derelict seaside oasis. Much like the Sodom by the Sea description that has been given to the frolic and mayhem hidden in the shadows behind the sand dunes of Coney Island’s yesteryear. In addition, much like Coney it is an hour away from its metro center on railway.

(click image to enlarge)

It thrives in Brighton Beach, part of the city of Brighton and Hove on the south coast of Great Britain. An English port town with a shabby resort town that houses crumbling piers and decadent hotels that find an ease in the hospitality of dirty weekends.

Just recently, many Londoners have rediscovered this oasis by the sea with its magnificent pier, which boasts its regency style structures, mirth of fairground rides, an abundance of restaurants, arcade halls, and a domed game hall.

(Image above courtesy of

On land, its Royal Pavilions were once part of a royal palace for the Prince Regent during the early 1800’s and is notable for its Indo-Saracenic architecture and Oriental interior design.

The resort also was once prideful of its West Pier, which lay languished, in shambles, and mostly deserted since the 1970’s only to suffer one last fatal fire. Plans for a future structure like the Eye in London are being designed for the West Pier site.

Much of this vibrant seaside resort has been modernized with new attractions including thrill rides, while keeping many of its original flair and artifacts.

From an aerial Google Earth’s point of view this glorious amusement pier, were it in Coney Island would transform our run downed dreams into an astonishing marvel of reality that would awaken Coney Island from the near-death comatose that it's been put through for the last three decades by lack of vision, spurious promises, selfish bureaucrats and greedy mongers.

(Scroll down to view other interesting images of the Brighton Pier)

Tune into some Brighton Pier videos below

For more information on the pier's full ameneties and amusements visit the pier's fun and informative official website.

Many amusement piers are still thriving across the world though some fall to corporate and developer greed. In 2006 Donald Trump decided to axe the steel pier in Atlantic city to make way for more of what this country has too much already: mixed-use development.

More of 'Brighton Dreaming' to come: The West Pier, The Royal Pavilions, and the Starlings (hordes of birds that swarm the pier together like a frantic black cloud).

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Coney Island's Dreamland Pier Bell 1885 Flickr Slideshow

From the Coney Island History Project Flickr Set:
The Dreamland Pier Bell will be on special exhibition Labor Day weekend (Sat-Mon), 1-6 pm and next weekend (Sept 12-13) 2-6 pm at the History Project on Surf Ave under the Cyclone roller coaster. Also on view will be period photos of Dreamland and the Bell.

Coney Island's Dreamland Pier Bell 1885

Saturday, September 05, 2009

New Found Dreamland Relilc On Display At Coney History Project

Image courtesy of Gregory P. Mango (NY Post)

As announced by the Coney Island History Project yesterday: The newly found Dreamland Pier bell that once welcomed guest by steamboat to Coney Island has been found resting in its murky grave, twenty five feet below sea level, for almost one hundred years by commercial diver Gene Ritter. Ritter found the bell last November and this week went under with his team to bring the relic out. The Dreamland bell will be on display at the Coney Island History Project for a short time until a permanent home is found (hopefully) in Coney Island.

Free Exhibit: Coney Island Bell on View at History Project under the Cyclone

Special exhibition for Labor Day Weekend – September 5-7, Hours are 1- 6 pm

From the History Project press release:
The historic Coney Island Bell from the old Dreamland Park was raised from the ocean floor yesterday after nearly 100 years underwater. Charles Denson, Executive Director of the Coney Island History Project is pleased to announce that the Bell will be on special exhibition this weekend at the History Project‘s exhibition center under the Cyclone roller coaster. Also on view will be period photos of Dreamland and the Bell along with Charles Denson’s photos documenting the raising of the Bell. The Coney Island History Project’s free public exhibition center is located under the Cyclone at 824 Surf Avenue just east of W 10th Street. FREE ADMISSION for One and ALL! The center is open for Labor Day weekend on Saturday, Sunday and Monday (Sept. 5-7). Hours are 1 to 6 p.m.

The 500-pound brass bell once welcomed visitors arriving at the pier of Coney Island’s old Dreamland Park, which was on the site of the New York Aquarium. The following Channel 7 News video shows the bell arriving at the dock yesterday after a successful rescue mission by the team from “Cultural Research Divers.” The historic bell survived the Dreamland fire of 1911 and was discovered after a 20-year quest by Coney Island diver Gene Ritter.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Century Old Dreamland Artifact Resurfaces

Image courtesy of bigdoodyhead (Coney Island USA message board)

A genuine artifact from the original Coney Island theme park, 'Dreamland' circa 1911 was found last year in November and has now been raised from it's murky crypt twenty five feet below sea level. A 500 pound bell that rested at the tip of the Dreamland Pier that extended 1,500 feet out from the shore at the Dreamland theme park in the early 1900's Coney Island. The bell for steamboat passengers arriving and leaving the pier. The bell along with most of the pier fell into the ocean during a catastrophic fire that also ruined the themepark.

Gene Ritter of the Cultural Research Diver's Mission, has removed the bell for display in Coney Island. Today's Coney Island will get a glimpse of the old glory that was the Coney Island of yesteryear.

Gene told KC today that the bell will be towed to the Gateway Marina opposite Floyd Bennet Field in Brooklyn around 4pm today.

Images courtesy of the NY Post

The New York Post writes:

Ritter, who discovered the treasure in November not far from where the pier once stood off the West Eighth Street beachfront, said the find left him with the same "incredible" feeling he had in 1990 when he was the first to find remnants of Dreamland under the ocean.

"It's an amazing artifact and symbol of Coney Island's past, and it's returning as the city is trying to ring in a new vision for Coney Island," said local historian Charles Denson.

The bell is expected to be on display at the Coney Island History Project this Labor Day Weekend but this information has still to be confirmed. Later a permanent home in Coney Island will be found for the bell. The news of the bell made it to many local and national tv news outlets around the country today.

Watch ABC news video of the Dreamland Pier Bell below

Coney Events: The Funny Face Project

A hundred artists give their best facial expression for the iconic Coney Island Funny Face that originated from Steeplechase in old Coney Island.

Coney Island USA has asked 100 of the country's top contemporary artists to take on the iconic Coney Island Funny Face. The Faces will be auctioned off to the highest bidder on September 16th from 7-10 pm at the Jonathan O'Hara Gallery (41 East 57th Street, Suite 1302 between Madison and Park Avenues) with all proceeds going directly towards supporting Coney Island USA's arts programming and the fight to preserve the historic amusement district of Coney Island. Preview dates for the Funny Face Project are September 14th and 15th from 10am- 5pm

Buy tickets to the September 16 Auction at
Coney Island USA.

Announcing the Funny Face Project
An Art Auction Event to benefit Coney Island USA
September 16, 2009
7 pm to 10 pm
at the Jonathan O'Hara Gallery

located 41 East 57th Street, Suite 1302
between Madison and Park Avenues

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Flickr Convoy: Summer Sunning

Image courtesy Pablo 57 / KC Flickr Pool

As the summer begins to wind down these reluctant bathers destined to absorb a good dose of sun rays.

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

Coney Events: Rockabilly Festival


All Live at the World Famous Coney Island Sideshow, The Burlesque at the Beach Series presents Sultry Burlesque with Weirdee Girl, Miss Kissy Wishes, Lefty Lucy and Jonny Porkpie! Spine-tingling Sideshow with The Squidling Brothers Circus! Real Live Surf Trash with NYC's The Tunnel Rockets !Part of The 2009 Coney Island Rockabilly Festival!!

Sideshows By The Seashore
corner of Surf and West 12th street

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Coney Events: The Warriors Skate Party

The Dreamland Roller Rink in Coney Island is still rolling strong. If you haven't come by do so before the season wraps to an end.
Dreamland Roller Rink
The Warriors Skate Party
Saturday, Sept 5th
8PM to 12AM
$12 admission/ $10 if you dress in 70 Street Attire
Free Skate Rentals if you arrive before 8:30
$5 Skate Rentals (or bring your own!)