She’s my Coney Island baby!
After a rough winter that brought a fairly severe snowstorm in March, Brooklynites are ready to embrace their local paradise for the spring and summer.
“The Alliance for Coney Island is excited to announce the opening of the Coney Island Amusement District for 2017, a sure sign that spring has officially arrived in New York City,” added Executive Director of the Alliance for Coney Island Alexandra Silversmith. “This year promises to be a year you won’t forget with new attractions and restaurants in Coney Island along with many favorites. We hope all New Yorkers will join us on the Boardwalk in 2017.”
Various attractions in Coney officially open on Saturday, April 8. For Brooklynites looking for great food, thrill rides and the new season, opening day can’t come soon enough.
Weather permitting, Luna Park will also be open from Saturday, April 8 through Tuesday, April 18 from 12 p.m. Visit www.lunaparknyc.com.
Welcome festivities begin with Deno’s Wonder Wheel Park which opens its season with the 32nd Annual Blessing of the Rides. On Sunday, April 9, starting at 11 a.m. on the boardwalk in front of Deno’s, the first 97 people will be able to ride the famous Wonder Wheel for free, in commemoration of Deno’s 97th year. In addition, 300 kids from Coney Island’s Salt N Sea Mission will also ride for free. The rides will be blessed and open officially at 11:30 a.m.
Twenty-one of the park’s rides will then open, including classics and a new one, Stop the Zombies, a new 7D Dark Ride which includes virtual reality. The “Say Boo” photo booth for souvenir photos to celebrate the fan favorite Spook-A-Rama, which is celebrating its 62nd year, will also be on hand. Fans can expect plenty more excitement in the coming weeks.
The day will also include the annual ribbon cutting ceremony hosted by park owners, Dennis and Steve Vourderis. The Fire Department Ceremonial Unit will present the colors and sing the National Anthem.
“We remember and honor the season-opening tradition started by Denos Vourderis and Debbie Santiago back in 1985,” said Pastor Roger Beard. Go to www.wonderwheel.com for more.
“The Vourderis family works hard all winter to get the rides ready for spring,” says the Director Rocco Brescia of the Mission, “These Coney Island kids get to enjoy them free. They’ve waited all winter for the rides to open.”
Coaster fans are also in luck. The Cyclone Roller Coaster will celebrate its 90th birthday and the first 100 riders will get on for free.
In addition, the Coney Island History Project will host its annual Opening Day on Sunday, April 9, from 1-6 p.m. Free of charge, attendees will be able to view historic artifacts, photographs, maps and films of Coney’s past.
Celebrating its 13th year, the venue will also allow individuals to take free souvenir photos with an original Steeplechase horse, a figure from Coney’s classic Spookhouse and Spook-A-Rama dark rides, and more. Visit www.coneyislandhistoryproject.org for info.
Sports fanatics are also in luck. The Brooklyn Cyclones aren’t the only game in town as the New York Cosmos of the North American Soccer League (NASL) have made MCU park their official home. Tickets are affordable, starting at $15, the atmosphere is exciting, and soccer fanatics can see the defending NASL champions live. Their next soccer match is Saturday, April 22 as the Cosmos take on Jacksonville Armada FC. Visit www.nycosmos.com for more info.
Nonetheless, baseball still rules in Brooklyn. The 2017 Brooklyn Cyclones, class-A affiliate of the New York Mets, will bring the fun on and off the field. Promotions are always top notch. This season, the highlights include a tribute to a timeless flick, “The Sandlot” on Wednesday, August 2. The night will include appearance from Chauncey Leopardi who played the role of Squints Palledorous, and bobbleheads of the character will be distributed. The season starts on Monday, June 19. Tickets are currently on sale at www.brooklyncyclones.com.