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Coney Island’s Steeplechase Pier is a popular spot for fishing and diving as well as for people-watching and photography. For photographer Kevin C Downs, who spends his summers running an annual photo documentary workshop at Coney Island USA, the pier is a magnet. His photos and video capture the daredevil spirit of the pier divers, who defy the “No Diving” signs for the thrill of the jump. Says one teenager: “It’s like…the adrenalin rush. It’s high. It’s better than going on any rides. It’s cheaper than Six Flags.”

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