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Coney Island

In the early part of the 20th Century, New York's working classes could find entertainment and recreation for very little outlay, at Coney Island.

A playground of funfairs, freak shows and dance halls, Coney Island was doubtless a wonderful place in it's time. Cary Grant started his career at Coney Island, as a stilt-walker and the Hot Dog was invented, possibly somewhere along the boardwalk.

Although the glory days are now long gone, most of the the rides are still operating, including the Wonder Wheel, built in 1920, and the Cyclone Roller Coaster, which was built from wood in 1929 and was the first of its kind in the world. Offering riders a thill a second, even the famous pilot Charles Lindbergh said he thought it was more fun than flying across the Atlantic!

The funfairs are open for business every day between June and August and at the weekend between April and October. You can still go on many of the rides but some, like the Parachute Jump, left over from the World's fair in 1939, have moved on to the next stage in their life cycle - museum piece.

If you have time in your packed schedule, Coney Islalnd is definitely worth a look, and don't forget the Coney Island Fireworks, every Friday evening during the summer, at nine o'clock. Check a local listings guide or newspaper to make sure they're on, then head for Coney Island boardwalk between W 10th and W 12th Sts, Coney Island, Brooklyn.

 

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