Coney Island

PSP member, blog writer and photographer Amber Ceffalio visited the aquarium & Coney Island last weekend, and post Sandy, is still an ideal outing for young ones.


Coney Island was feared destroyed after Superstorm Sandy. But, in defiance of the storm surge, seaside businesses created the Alliance of Coney Island to support local residents and enterprises. Coney Island is stronger than ever offering family-friendly attractions for everyone from toddlers to tweens.

One of the first projects the Alliance completed was the elevated restrooms lining the boardwalk.

Make Memories with Mermaids and Movies:

Open summer by dressing up as a mythical sea creature and marching in the Mermaid Parade (June 22nd, Surf Ave).  The Mermaid Parade was created in 1983 by artists to celebrate the seaside neighborhood. It’s reportedly grown into the largest parade in America with 750,000 visitors last year. The future of the Mermaid Parade was briefly in doubt but thankfully, funding came through and this weekend the celebration begins at 1:00 pm.

Flicks on the Beach will inflate a 40-foot screen each Monday through the summer transforming the beach at West 10th Street into an outdoor theater.  The first movie, Little Fugitive, is July 1st at 7:30 pm.

Attractions to Experience:

Though parts of the New York Aquarium are still being rebuilt, but it has enough attractions open--state of the art aquatheater for sea lion performances, fish tanks, outdoor marine wildlife--to keep little ears and eyes engaged. The Aquarium is continuing to host birthday parties and summer camps.

Family-owned Deno’s Kiddie Park opens at 11:00 am each day, an hour earlier than than the section for older riders. The accident-free, owner built, landmarked Wonder Wheel has been scrubbed and painted and is fully operational.  The Wonder Wheel is safe for all ages.

Luna Park, which includes the iconic Cyclone Rollercoaster, added new rides and restaurants this year.  June 21st at 9:30 pm, Luna Park will ceremoniously light the Parachute Jump.

Nurture a love for baseball by taking the family to the Brooklyn Cyclones.  Baseball at the Cyclones is more affordable (from $9), easier to access (D, F, Q, N), and more interactive (promo schedule) than baseball at the major league stadiums. Every Friday and Saturday night home game, fireworks will be held post-game.

Time to Eat:

There are a plethora of eateries the length of the boardwalk including the so called birthplace of the hot dog, Nathans. Nathans annual hot dog eating contest will be July 4th at noon.  Totonno’s is back and baking world famous pizzas.  If you love pizza, stop by Grimaldi’s Surf Ave location; there is little to no line. For a sitdown restaurant, try Gargioulo’s, a Coney Island mainstain since 1907. As evidence that Coney Island truly is a family-friendly, Applebees recently opened with a 4,300 gallon fish tank.

Take the Q, B, D or N to the end of the line and enjoy a day at Coney Island.

The New York Aquarium is located on Surf Avenue & West 8th Street in Brooklyn, New York 11224. By subway... Take the F or Q train to the West 8th Street station in Coney Island, Brooklyn. Alternatively, take the N or D trains to the Coney Island-Stillwell Avenue Station, then walk two blocks east on Surf Ave.