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Happy Birthday, Coney Island Cyclone!

It’s officially summer, which means Coney Island is hopping with locals and tourists alike, enjoying the beach, eating hot dogs, and riding rides. On June 26, 1927 one of Coney Island’s most popular and enduring rides was born–the Coney Island Cyclone!

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Coney Island Cyclone [Flickr user Keith Putnam]
Coasters like the Thunderbolt and the Tornado were popular additions to Coney Island’s amusement parks, so Jack and Irving Rosenthal bought land previously occupied by the Giant Racer roller coaster, and hired coaster designer Vernon Keenan. Rides, which send you hurtling across 3,000 feet of track in 100 seconds, cost a quarter. Now, the coaster is a National Landmark.

Gravesend: Giant Coaster, east side of W. 8 Street between Surf Avenue and the Boardwalk, Coney Island, 1924.
Gravesend: Giant Coaster, east side of W. 8 Street between Surf Avenue and the Boardwalk, Coney Island, 1924.

The first time I rode the Cyclone I was 14-years-old, and despite the whiplash it was the most exciting and exhilarating roller coaster I had ever been on. Have you ridden the Cyclone? Tell us about your Coney Island memories!

 

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