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Coney Island Fireworks

Electric Eden Revisited: Friday Night Fireworks with Wonder Wheel in Coney Island. Photo © Bruce Handy

With Memorial Day just two weeks away, readers are starting to ask about Coney Island’s fireworks schedule for the summer! The first Friday night fireworks show of the 2015 season will be on June 19, the eve of both the first day of summer and the Mermaid Parade. This free weekly event continues on Fridays through August 21. UPDATE: Thanks to Coney Island’s City Councilman Mark Treyger, the Friday night fireworks have been extended to include August 28 and September 4. There are Saturday night fireworks on August 29 and September 5 after the Cyclones games. Details below. Friday night fireworks start at 9:30pm and are shot off from the beach. Best viewing is on the Boardwalk from West 10th to West 12th Streets or from the Wonder Wheel. Another popular viewing spot is Steeplechase Pier.

For the second year, the Alliance for Coney Island is presenting a special July 4th fireworks at 9:45pm. The Independence Day fireworks will be shot off from the beach adjacent to the Pier. Best viewing is from the Boardwalk and Steeplechase Plaza.

The Brooklyn Cyclones have also announced fireworks on the following eight Saturdays and one Thursday after their home games, including the team’s Home Opener on Saturday, June 20th. Fireworks at MCU Park start when the game is over, so the time varies and is sometimes later than 9:30. Since the Brooklyn Cyclones’ Fireworks are shot from inside their park, best viewing is within and close to the stadium, which is between West 16th and 19th Streets.

Saturday, June 20 – BROOKLYN CYCLONES HOME OPENER – vs. Staten Island Yankees – Post-Game Fireworks
Saturday, June 27 – vs. Connecticut – Toy Story 20th Anniversary Night, Boy Scout Sleepover – Post-Game Fireworks
Thursday, July 2 – vs. Hudson Valley – Back to the Future 30th Anniversary – Post-Game Fireworks
Saturday, July 11 – vs. Aberdeen – Star Wars Night – Post-Game Fireworks
Saturday, July 18 – vs. Vermont – Honeymooners 60th Anniversary Night, Princess & Pirate Night – Post-Game Fireworks
Saturday, August 1 – vs. Batavia – Honeymooners 60th Anniversary Night, Princess & Pirate Night – Post-Game Fireworks
Saturday, August 29 – vs. Aberdeen – Military Appreciation Night, Intern Boot Camp – Post-Game Fireworks
Saturday, September 5 – vs. Staten Island Yankees – Latin Music Night – Post-Game Fireworks

When the weather is iffy on a day when fireworks are scheduled, or if the show is delayed, check the Coney Island tweeters on Coney Island Fun’s list for updates. Thanks to People’s Playground photographer and resident Bruce Handy for his gorgeous photo of one of the Friday night fireworks shows of the past.

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Coney Island Fireworks

Fireworks on Coney Island Beach, July 19, 2013. Photo © Jim McDonnell

[If you’re looking for info on Coney Island’s 2015 fireworks schedule, here you go.]

Readers are already starting to ask about this year’s fireworks, so here you go: The first Friday night fireworks show of Coney Island’s 2014 season will be on June 20, the eve of both the first day of summer and the Mermaid Parade. Sponsored by the Alliance for Coney Island, this free weekly event continues on Fridays through August 27. Friday night fireworks start at 9:30pm and are shot off from the beach. Best viewing is on the Boardwalk from West 10th to West 12th Streets or from the Wonder Wheel. Another popular viewing spot, Steeplechase Pier, reopened in October after being rebuilt post-Sandy.

UPDATE: On June 27th, the Mayor’s Offices announced that there will be a special Fourth of July Fireworks show in Coney Island at 9:45pm on the Beach and Boardwalk near West 21st Street. July 4th is on a Friday this year and a special permit was required due to the holiday.

The Brooklyn Cyclones also have fireworks inside MCU Park on the following six Saturdays after their home games as well four other days, including the team’s Opening Day, Saturday, June 14th, and June 16 and June 17. This year every Saturday night fireworks show will have a special musical theme. Fireworks at MCU Park start when the game is over, so the time varies and is sometimes later than 9:30. Since the Brooklyn Cyclones’ Fireworks are shot from inside their park, best viewing is within and close to the stadium, which is between W 16th and 19th Streets.

Saturday, June 14 – BROOKLYN CYCLONES HOME OPENER – vs. Staten Island Yankees – Post-Game Fireworks
Monday, June 16 – vs. Staten Island Yankees – Post-Game Fireworks
Tuesday, June 17 – vs. Hudson Valley Renegades – Post-Game Fireworks
Saturday, July 5 – vs. Aberdeen IronBirds – Seinfeld 25th Anniversary Celebration – Post-Game Fireworks
Saturday, July 19 – vs Williamsport Crosscutters – Post-Game Fireworks
Saturday, July 26 – vs. Vermont Lake Monsters – Elvis Presley Night – Post-Game Fireworks
Saturday, August 2 – vs. Connecticut Tigers – Star Wars Night – Post-Game Fireworks
Wednesday, August 13 – vs. Lowell Spinners – Kosher Kaboom Fireworks
Saturday, August 23 – vs. Tri-City Valley Cats – Princess Night – Post-Game Fireworks
Sunday, August 31 – vs. Staten Island Yankees – Fan Appreciation Day -Post-Game Fireworks

When the weather is iffy on a day when fireworks are scheduled, or if the show is delayed, check the Coney Island tweeters on Coney Island Fun’s list for updates. Thanks to People’s Playground photographer Jim McDonnell for his splendid photo of one of last summer’s fireworks shows.

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Friday Night Fireworks

Friday Night Fireworks with Wonder Wheel in Coney Island. Photo © Bruce Handy

UPDATE May 10, 2014: Readers are already starting to ask about this year’s fireworks, so here you go: The first Friday night fireworks show of Coney Island’s 2014 season will be on June 20, the eve of both the first day of summer and the Mermaid Parade. Schedule for 2014 fireworks is here.

The first Friday night fireworks show of Coney Island’s 2013 season will be on June 21, the first day of summer and the eve of the Mermaid Parade. This free weekly event continues every Friday through August 30. Sponsored by the Alliance for Coney Island, the pyrotechnic extravaganza starts at 9:30 pm. Best viewing is on the Boardwalk from West 10th to West 12th Streets or from the Wonder Wheel. Another popular viewing spot, Steeplechase Pier, is currently under renovation after damage from Superstorm Sandy and expected to reopen in July.

The Brooklyn Cyclones have also scheduled fireworks on the following six Saturdays after their home games as well as on one Tuesday – the team’s opening day, June 18th –and one Wednesday, which falls on July 3rd. This year every Saturday night fireworks show will have a special musical theme, including Jimmy Buffett, Bruce Springsteen and the Beatles. Ebbets Field 100th Anniversary, an old-time baseball exhibition, Scout sleepovers and other special events as well as the starting times for the games are listed on the Cyclones promo schedule.

Tuesday June 18 – BROOKLYN CYCLONES OPENING DAY – vs. Staten Island Yankees – Homecoming Fireworks
Saturday, June 22 – vs. Aberdeen IronBirds – Jimmy Buffett Fireworks
Saturday, June 29 – vs. Hudson Valley Renegades – Girl Power Fireworks
Wednesday, July 3 – vs. Staten Island Yankees – Patriotic Fireworks
Saturday, July 20 – vs. Batavia Muckdogs – Springsteen Fireworks
Saturday, Aug 10 – vs. State College Spikes – Billy Joel Fireworks
Saturday, August 17 – vs. Vermont Lake Monsters – Disney Fireworks
Saturday, August 31 – vs. Aberdeen IronBirds – Beatles Fireworks

The fireworks after the home games are shot off from MCU Stadium located between West 16th and West 19th Streets and are best viewed inside the ballpark or from the Boardwalk or adjacent streets.

UPDATE: A special Fourth of July Celebration and Fireworks Show was announced this week. The Brooklyn Cyclones and the Alliance for Coney Island are hosting the event at MCU Park. This means that Coney Island will have fireworks three days in a row — on July 3, 4 and 5! According to the news release for the July 4 event:

Admission is free, however donations will be accepted to benefit the Brooklyn Public Library and #ConeyRecovers, an initiative of local organizations working in partnership to assist with the recovery of the Coney Island community.

The gates will be open at 4:30 p.m. and all ballpark concessions and restrooms will be available to the public.

During the event, attendees can enjoy:
• A pig roast presented by Thomas Joseph Catering
• “Beers of New York” Beer Garden
• A special performance by the String Orchestra of Brooklyn
• Live music from oldies and Top 40 cover bands
• Family activities including the “Fastest Arm in Brooklyn Competition” on the Brooklyn Cyclones speed pitch

The event will culminate with a tremendous Fourth of July fireworks extravaganza at 9 p.m., preceded by a performance from the Brooklyn String Orchestra.

Fourth of July in Coney Island kicks off with the world-renowned Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest beginning with the women contestants at 11:30AM and the men at 12 noon at the Original Nathan’s of Coney Island located on Stillwell Avenue. Pre-show entertainment begins at 10:30AM

For more information, please call 718.37.BKLYN

When the weather is iffy on a day that fireworks are scheduled, check the Coney Island tweeters on Coney Island Fun’s list for updates. Thanks to People’s Playground photographer Bruce Handy for his splendid photo of one of last summer’s fireworks shows.

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Little Fugitive, the 1953 classic about a 7-year-old boy who spends 24 hours on the lam in Coney Island, returns to Coney on July 1st to open the 3rd Annual Coney Island Flicks on the Beach. This year is the 60th anniversary of the film, which won the Silver Lion at the Venice Film Festival and influenced the French New Wave. “My Dad used to say his veins were full of sand from Coney Island,” said Mary Engel of her film-maker father Morris Engel at a screening of the new 35MM print at Film Forum earlier this year.

Also screening at this year’s Flicks on the Beach are Bending Steel, a documentary which premiered at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival, and Men in Black III starring Will Smith and Josh Brolin. Both movies feature scenes shot in Coney Island. Here is the complete schedule for this summer’s Coney Island Flicks on the Beach:

July 1: Little Fugitive, 60th Anniversary (rained out, rescheduled for August 27)
July 8: Bending Steel, in partnership with the Tribeca Film Festival
July 15: The Hunger Games
July 22: Wreck it Ralph (rained out, rescheduled for Sept 3)
July 29: Men in Black III
August 5: The Avengers
August 12: Fame
August 19: 42
August 27: Little Fugitive (rescheduled for a Tuesday night due to rain on July 1)
Sept. 3: Wreck It Ralph (rescheduled for a Tuesday night due to rain on July 22)

The Monday night beachside film series is a free event sponsored by the Alliance for Coney Island together with Rooftop Films and NYC & Co. Pre-show entertainment begins at dusk on the beach near West 10th Street.

Coney Island Flicks on the Beach

Pre-show entertainment at Coney Island Flicks on the Beach. July 12, 2012. Photo © Tricia Vita/me-myself-i via flickr

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For the past two seasons, photographer and film editor Jim McDonnell has released a video titled “Coney Island Dancing” after the boardwalk dancers pack it in for the season. We’re happy to report that the 2012 edition has arrived just in time for, well more dancing on the Boardwalk! The Coney Island Dancers have announced that they are extending their season of free outdoor dance parties with an October Fest from September 29 through Halloween.

Posted on Labor Day, “Coney Island Dancing 2012” opens with the legendary Tony Disco before segueing to the legendary dancing doll known as “Miss Coney Island.” Both are charismatic old-timers who are famous in Coney Island and deserve wider acclaim. Nice to see them start this show, which distills a season’s worth of dance moves on the Boardwalk and the Polar Express and at Luna Park, Wonder Wheel Park and the Mermaid Parade and Ball into a joyous four minute forty-five second video. Here are links to Jim’s dance vids from 2010 and 2011 in case you missed ’em. Party on!

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Coney Island Fireworks

Electric Eden Revisited: Friday Night Fireworks with Wonder Wheel in Coney Island. Photo © Bruce Handy

Tonight in Coney Island, the sky will light up with a pyrotechnic display rivaling that of last week’s “Electric Eden Revisited” in this fabulous photo by Bruce Handy. It’s the last Friday night fireworks of the summer and is expected to be spectacular. Best viewing is on the Boardwalk from West 10th to West 12th Streets, on the Wonder Wheel or from Steeplechase Pier.

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Coney Island Flicks on the Beach

Ghostbusters at Coney Island Flicks on the Beach. July 2, 2012. Photo © Bruce Handy/Pablo 57 via flickr

Outdoor movie shows in Coney Island date back to the early days of the cinema. Hot dog inventor Charles Feltman’s grand restaurant and amusement park boasted the Seaside Garden Theatre where films were shown with live musical accompaniment. “At every performance 2,000 persons are seated in the outdoor theatre,” according to a 1917 article in the New York Sun. “The garden has won favor with the ‘movie’ public because of its location, which is by the sea.”

The 2012 season debut of Coney Island’s free outdoor movie series on the beach was last Monday. A nice crowd came out for Ghostbusters as you can see in Bruce Handy’s photo above. The movies are projected onto a giant screen set up on the beach between W 10th and W 12th Streets. In the past, pre-show entertainment has featured the Coney Island Sideshow, celebrity impersonators, trivia contests and dancing. The pre-show is at 7pm with the feature film starting at around 8:30pm. Here’s the rest of the 2012 schedule:

July 9 – Edge of the City: Underground NY Shorts By the Sea
Edge of the City: Underground NY Shorts By the Sea is a collection of independent short films, including The Best Thing I Ever Done—an endearing account of Domenico DeMarco, owner of the legendary pizza shop Di Fara—and A Man Named Magick, about a charismatic Midtown magic shop owner. The showcase begins at 8:30pm.

July 14 – Bound for Glory (1976)
David Carradine plays Woody Guthrie in this Oscar-winning biopic, set in the Dust Bowl, about the folk artist’s experience with the working class after leaving Texas to join the Okies headed to California in search of work.

July 16 – Manhattan (1979)
See Diane Keaton, Mariel Hemingway and Meryl Streep in Woody Allen’s Oscar-winning love story.

July 23 – The Muppets (2011) (Postponed due to rain)
Jim Henson’s much-loved characters return to the big screen, as Gary (Jason Segel) and Mary (Amy Adams) aim to reunite the gang in an attempt to salvage The Muppet Theater.

July 30 – Girl Walk // All Day (2011)
This feature-length film is actually a long-form dance music video, featuring three dancers who use the cityscape as their stage. The movie is set to Girl Talk’s sample-heavy 2010 album, All Day.

August 6 – Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol (2011)
Tom Cruise stars as Ethan Hunt in the fourth installment of the Mission Impossible series. Hunt and his team, who are implicated in the bombing of the Kremlin, must go rogue to clear the Impossible Missions Force’s name.

August 13 – The Muppets – Rescheduled from July 23
Jim Henson’s much-loved characters return to the big screen, as Gary (Jason Segel) and Mary (Amy Adams) aim to reunite the gang in an attempt to salvage The Muppet Theater.

The free movie series in Coney Island is sponsored by the Coney Island Development Corporation (CIDC) and NYC & Company in conjunction with Rooftop Films.

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January 8, 2012: Video of the Day: Coney Island at Night by Edwin S. Porter

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