Look Who’s Turning 90!

When you hear the name Brooklyn many things come to mind; whether its things like real estate, food, festivals, or landmarks, the borough has an abundance to offer that will not disappoint.

Nathan's Hotdog

At the top of that list is the Cyclone at Luna Park (formerly the grounds of Astroland) in Coney Island, an iconic attraction that cannot be missed. Whether you’re a resident or a tourist visiting New York, the cyclone is a part of Brooklyn’s history and an attraction not to be missed.

“As a New Yorker, the cyclone is one of the top things you have to do,” says Angie Morris, Luna Park’s brand manager. “It’s amazing to hear guests from all over the world add the Cyclone to their “must do” list.”

Cyclone

In just a few short weeks, the historic wooden roller coaster will turn 90 years old! Since it’s opening on June 26th, 1927, it has been giving thrill seekers a ride to remember. It’s not been without its hiccups; in the 1970’s due to economic turmoil the coaster was almost torn down but then mayor, Ed Koch, fought to save it, saying he wasn’t sure Coney Island could survive without it. “Brooklyn is the Cyclone,” says Morris. “It is a generational ride that is shared with all Brooklynites.”

In 1988, it was declared a landmark and placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1991.

It also holds a bit of history; famous celebrities have ridden it and aviator Charles Lindbergh, the first person to fly solo over the Atlantic Ocean, reportedly said a ride on this roller coaster was greater than flying a plane at top speed.

It’s also been featured in such action thriller movies such as, “The Warriors,” and “Shakedown” with actor Sam Elliot while stars like Diana Ross and Michael Jackson danced under it in the hit film “The Wiz.”

The Warriors

Soaring above Coney Island’s boardwalk at the corner of Surf Avenue and West 10th Street, the impressive coaster reaches an 85 foot peak before a roaring 60 mph plunge brings only the bravest to the bottom.  Overall, there are 12 drops throughout the 2,640 feet of swirling track and 27 elevation changes. For a minute and 50 seconds, passengers aboard the cyclone experience a thrill on the all wooden piece of machinery that’s like no other. It’s definitely not a ride for the faint of heart!

Rollercoaster Picture

To commemorate this milestone birthday, Luna Park will be celebrating the cyclone’s 90th on Saturday, June 25th with the biggest block party in Brooklyn. Rain or shine the party starts at 2pm and is free for all ages. The fun-filled day will include such activities as face painting, a photo booth, and appearances by the Harlem Globetrotters and a musical performance from Brooklyn’s own Fabolous.

Globetotters

Along with the rest of the rides, games and food, the famous Feltman’s of Coney Island which closed its doors in 1954 is returning this summer to the original spot where it first began.

“We celebrate milestones for the Cyclone because it is a NYC landmark,” says Morris. “As we’ve done in the past with the 75th, 85th, and now 90th; it’s our way of honoring an icon and as we gear up for the 100th!”

But don’t be deceived; while this coaster might be turning 90 there is nothing old about her. Fully refurbished last year, it has been repaired and restored throughout the years and is inspected daily for the safety of its riders.

Luna Park first opened in 2010 on the former grounds of Astroland and this summer they’ve removed their 4 hour wristband to introduce the All Day wristband which gives guests the opportunity to ride all of the rides unlimited times all day long. So if you’re brave enough you can conquer the Cyclone more than once in a day!

Luna Park

BK for a Memorable Memorial Day!

Can’t decide whether or not to book a trip or stay in town for Memorial Day weekend? It just so happens there is a lot going down in the Brooklyn borough on Monday May 30, and we’re not talking about day-drinking and sample sales! Memorial Day is about honoring the men and women who have lost their lives serving in our armed forces, so wherever you end up, take a moment to pay your respects.

 

imageProud Procession
What’s red, white and blue, 149 years old, and ends with a 21-gun salute? One of the oldest traditions in Brooklyn, the iconic Brooklyn’s Kings County Memorial Day Parade, starts in Bay Ridge and ends at John Paul Jones Park for the memorial service. Catholic war veterans lead the march with local service organizations like the NYPD and FDNY. Brooklyn high-school bands perform, and antique fire trucks and cars are on display. The parade is the perfect way to show your pride and honor fallen soldiers and their families on Memorial Day.
Monday May 30, from 11am. 3rd Ave and 75th St, Bay Ridge. Free.

 

Graveyard Gigimg_2007_sm
A cemetery wouldn’t usually be our first choice for a concert venue, but Green-Wood Cemetery’s Annual Memorial Day Concert is a NYC favorite. Best of all, no bag checks or wristbands – this one is free! Bring a blanket, pick up some food and drinks from local vendors, and get comfortable, surrounded by the sounds of the ISO Symphonic Band, founded in 1995 to sponsor talented NYC students. Listen out for the works of Green-Wood’s permanent “residents” Fred Ebb, Louis Moreau Gottschalk and Leonard Bernstein. Organizers encourage you to reserve your spot online so they can gauge attendance, and consider making a donation, to ensure they can keep putting on these events.
Monday May 30, 2:30-5pm. 500 25th St, Greenwood Heights. Free.

 

nVYIn the Navy
For over 150 years the Brooklyn Navy Yard churned out America’s most famous fighting ships, from the USS Maine to the USS Missouri. On Memorial Day weekend and especially during Fleet Week New York (May 25-31), it seems fitting to celebrate our sea services and explore the Brooklyn Navy Yard: Past, Present and Future. Over three floors of Building 92, the exhibition tells the story of the waterfront site. You will learn about the site Native American history, its role in the American Revolution, the great naval ships designed and built there and the Navy Yard’s emergence the innovative industrial park you see today.
Saturday May 28 or Sunday May 29, from 2pm. 63 Flushing Ave, Brooklyn Navy Yard. Admission to BLDG 92 is free. Public tours by bus, $30. Public tours by bike, $24.

 

A Fling Fit for a KingKings-County-Fair-640x488
Open now until Memorial Day, the Kings County Fair claims to be Brooklyn’s most popular family event, and with endless cotton candy, a roller-coaster, Ferris wheel AND a tiger, we think they might be right! Returning to Aviator Sports and Events Center for the seventh year, you can count on a fun-filled fair with rides and games for kids of all ages, and carnival cuisine including corn dogs, hamburgers, hot-dogs, pizza, pretzels and funnel cake. New this year is The Tiger Encounter, which raises awareness on the plight of the tiger, and the Mega Pass ticket ($25 for admission and ride bracelet).
Thursday May 19 – Monday May 30, from 5pm weekdays and 12pm weekends. 3159 Flatbush Avenue, Floyd Bennett Field. Entry, $5. Ride tickets vary.