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Posts Tagged ‘Coney Isalnd’

Zip Line

Abandoned Zip Line on Stillwell Avenue, Coney Island. December 5, 2012. Photo © Tricia Vita/me-myself-i via flickr

The strange saga of the zip line that came to Coney Island last summer and never opened (except for an hour-and-a-half) due to a permitting snafu with the City is about to end. The attraction was supposed to be part of the BK Festival and was set up on Thor Equities Stillwell Avenue lot behind Nathan’s, where it was left standing after the festival closed. Bob Rigsby, Project Manager of Scaffold King Rentals, Inc. of Rockville, Indiana, the company that rented the scaffolding to independent operator CAT 5 Zipline, has come to Coney Island to reclaim it.

“There’s $80,000 worth of metal, if we had to replace it,” Rigsby says of the two towers, which survived Superstorm Sandy just fine. “Right now we’re $60,000 in the hole.”

Scaffold King has hired a local crew to take down the towers starting this morning. It took five months for Rigsby to prove ownership of the scaffolding and get the necessary permits to dismantle it. The actual zip line is from a company in Boston that Scaffold King works with frequently, he says. Rigsby added that they will be installing a zip line elsewhere in New York that will go over the rooftops. We’re jealous. It’s too bad Coney Island never got to see this attraction in action. Based on the astronomical number of hits on ATZ posts updating the status of the Coney Island Zip Line and the emails and comments from people eagerly waiting for it to open, it would have been very popular and could have been a year-round attraction.

In January 2012, Scaffold King erected the launch and landing towers for the first-ever Super Bowl zip line, which was the single-longest temporary one ever constructed. Here’s a video of the 800-foot zip line at Super Bowl XLVI Village along Capitol Street in downtown Indianapolis.

UPDATE May 5, 2013

Tangled Up in Red Tape Department: First the zip line couldn’t open because of City permitting issues, now it’s stuck here because of permitting issues. The dismantling of the zip wires got underway as scheduled on Monday, but before the scaffolding could be taken down, work was stopped due to the wording on the permit. “The I’s have to be dotted and the T’s have to be crossed,” Rigsby said before he went home to Indiana without his company’s zip line, leaving Thor Equities to work out the details of the permit to take it down this week. (It was finally dismantled and trucked away.)

Still wanna zip line in New York City? Last year, a 160-foot portable zip line was added to the Summer Streets Program, run by the City’s DOT. Locations included Union Square and Foley Square in Manhattan. The annual event is on three consecutive Saturdays in the summer. The zip line was offered free of charge and was very popular. Will it be back this year?

 

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Related posts on ATZ…

August 19, 2012: BK Festival Vendors Back in Business, Coney Zipline Isn’t

August 10, 2012: Steeplechase Plaza Under Construction in Coney Island

August 5, 2012: Coney Island Zip Line Still Under Construction

June 28, 2012: Zip Line Coming to Coney Island’s Stillwell Avenue in July

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Steeplechase Pier

Repairing Coney Island’s Sandy-damaged Steeplechase Pier, March 13, 2013. Photo © Tricia Vita/me-myself-i via flickr

Yesterday in Coney Island, for the first time we saw repair work being done on the Sandy-damaged Steeplechase Pier. The 1,000-foot-pier is a popular spot for fishing and for watching the Friday night fireworks, which begin on June 21st. In the past, it was also a favorite place for pier divers, who defied the “No Diving” signs for the thrill of the jump.

ATZ asked one of the workers when the pier would be open again. “We hope to have it open by July,” he said. When more info is available from the Parks Department we’ll post an update. Along with the Parachute Jump, which will be the centerpiece of the new Steeplechase Plaza, the rebuilt pier is a survivor of George C Tilyou’s Steeplechase Park.

UPDATE 4:17pm

ATZ received an email from Meghan Lalor of the Parks Department Press Office confirming the above info: “The entire Steeplechase Pier is being reconstructed. We expect to complete construction by July 4.” Yay and Hooray! Excited the pier will be open for fireworks watching for most of the summer. (Work was still underway on the pier as of Labor Day.)

UPDATE October 1, 2013

Over the weekend, word on the Boardwalk that Coney Island’s Steeplechase Pier would reopen today, Oct 1, almost but not quite true. After it’s inspected, sometime in October, a Parks Department spokesman tells ATZ. Soon!
Coney Island’s Steeplechase Pier to Reopen in October, ATZ, September 30, 2103

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March 11, 2013: Luna Park’s Pinwheels Go Up on Coney Island Boardwalk

October 31, 2012: Photo Album: Hurricane Sandy’s Aftermath in Coney Island

August 10, 2012: Steeplechase Plaza Under Construction in Coney Island

August 24, 2010: Video: Coney Island Pier Divers by Kevin C Downs

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This clip for AMC’s new reality show “Immortalized” introduces Coney Island artist Takeshi Yamada and his world of rogue taxidermy. It’s exciting to see our friend and his sea rabbit Seara, who are among the Boardwalk’s most recognizable eccentrics, on the cusp of TV stardom.

“People love freak show. People are attracted to freaks,” says Yamada as he shows off the taxidermied oddities in his Museum of World of Wonders. “I am one of the most famous freak show gaff masters. A freak show gaff master’s job is to make fake creations such as Fiji Mermaid, Chupacabra, Hairy Trout, those kind of things…”

In the unscripted series, Yamada is one of four “Immortalizers” who will face off against challengers in a taxidermy competition. “I had a great time creating truly monumental scale and spectacular rogue taxidermy monsters for this TV series,” Yamada told ATZ in an interview (“Coney Island Taxidermist Takeshi Yamada in AMC Reality Show,” Nov 29, 2012). “Immortalized” consists of eight, half-hour episodes and premieres on Thursday, February 14 at 10pm.

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December 8, 2011: Takeshi Yamada’s Jersey Devil Set for Bell House Taxidermy Contest

December 7, 2010: Art of the Day: Freak Taxidermy Skull by Takeshi Yamada

September 18, 2010: Photo of the Day: Takeshi Yamada’s Freak Baby Museum at San Gennaro

September 24, 2009: Photo Album: Coney Islanders and Carnies at San Gennaro

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