Luna Park set to celebrate Cyclone’s 95th birthday

June 23, 2022 Jaime DeJesus, Brooklynreporter.com
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It’s going to be a historic and happy birthday for the world-famous Coney Island Cyclone.

The historic rollercoaster, located within Luna Park, is turning 95, and the amusement park is doing all it can to make sure the celebration is a special one.

On Sunday, which is the coaster’s birthday, the first 95 guests on line will ride it for free when Luna Park opens at 11 a.m.

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The celebration will include a toast and cake-cutting ceremony, music, circus entertainment, balloon art, snacks, and appearances from Brooklyn Cyclones’ mascots King Henry and Sandy the Seagull. (The Brooklyn Cyclones minor-league baseball team were named after the rollercoaster.)

In addition to the Cyclone’s birthday, Luna Park will be celebrating throughout the weekend with free entertainment, face painting, caricature artists, stilt walkers and more.

The Cyclone was made a New York City landmark in 1988 and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

Its first ride took place on June 26, 1927. It reaches a maximum speed of 60 miles per hour, carries 24 passengers, and boasts a total track length of 2,640 feet.

A look at the Cyclone’s 90th birthday celebration in 2017. Eagle Urban Media/File Photo

According to Luna Park’s website, the Cyclone is the second-steepest wooden roller coaster in the world.

“The Cyclone features an adrenaline-charged plunge measuring 85 feet at an uncompromising descent angle of almost 60 degrees,” the website says. “Exhilarating drops, curves, 27 elevation variations and a sinuous layout have made this iconic wooden coaster a timeless classic and after more than 90 years of operation the Cyclone is still delivering thrills. Highlighted in major films, music videos, and works of art, the Cyclone is a cultural phenomenon and one of Brooklyn’s most iconic sites to visit.”

The Cyclone was constructed in 1927 by Harry C. Baker and Vernon Keenan, according to information from the NYC Department of Parks and Recreation.

“[It] is one of the country’s few surviving vintage wood-track rollercoasters, with modern building codes making it irreplaceable,” NYC Parks added on its own website. “The ride’s distinctive frame, sound, and speed were renowned, with famous aviator Charles Lindbergh commenting, ‘A ride on the Cyclone is a greater thrill than flying an airplane at top speed.’”

Its last big birthday celebration took place in 2017, when the ride celebrated its 90th birthday. Grammy-nominated rapper and Brooklyn-native Fabolous, as well as the Harlem Globetrotters, attended the event.

Sunday’s festivities begin in Luna Park, 1000 Surf Ave., at 11 a.m. with welcoming remarks followed by the cutting of the cake, rides and activities.

Coney’s Cones, on the Riegelmann Boardwalk near West 10th Street, will also be serving up a limited-edition Cyclone-inspired handmade gelato all weekend long.


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