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Coney Island amusement parks: What to know before you go

coney Island amusement parks
People sit on the sand in Coney Island.
REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

Coney Island’s amusement parks are set to open for the summer season on April 9 — giving Brooklynites the opportunity to whip around some of the country’s best rides for the first time in 18 months. 

Both parks, however, have made some changes to prevent the spread of the COVID-19. Here’s what you need to go before going:

Make advanced reservations

Both Luna Park and Deno’s Wonder Wheel Park are limiting their capacity to 33 percent, meaning that if you want to fly around in the Seaside Swings or scream on the Cyclone, you should make reservations before. Each park has its own reservation process. 

To enter Deno’s Wonder Wheel Amusement Park — which contains the famous Wonder Wheel alongside kiddie rides, a virtual reality ride, and more — visitors can make free reservations on the park’s website by clicking here. Tickets for the rides are sold at the ticket booths inside the park.

To visit Luna Park — which houses the Cyclone, the Thunderbolt, the Scream Zone, and more — attendees are expected to purchase their wristbands online in advance by clicking here. Park-goers can arrive at the park 30 minutes before or after the time of their entry, but are not guaranteed access if they’re later than that. 

Visitors are allowed to stay in the park for up to two hours. Tickets and reservations are available up to two weeks in advance. 

Check planned subway construction

If your trip to Coney Island involved riding the F train, you may need to make other travel plans. 

For all weekends this summer through August (except fourth of July weekend), all F train service is suspended between Church Avenue and Coney Island-Stillwell Avenue because of signal upgrades. To travel to the People’s Playground, transfer to the D, N, or Q trains, or take a free F-train shuttle bus.

Wear a mask

Mask-wearing is mandatory at both parks for all guests over the age of two. Bring a few spares — a ride on the Thunderbolt might send yours flying. 

Open hours

Both parks are open on weekends only before Memorial Day weekend and after Labor Day. Luna Park will be open from 11 am until 7 pm in April and May, and Deno’s Wonder Wheel Park will be open from 11 am to 6 pm in the spring. During the peak season in the summer, the parks will be open daily.

Safety precautions

In addition to mandating mask-wearing and limiting capacity, the parks will install hand sanitizing stations at every ride, and the park will frequently clean all the surfaces that are frequently touched. Ride seating, eating areas, and lines will all be socially distanced.

Although theme parks in Japan banned screaming to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in 2020, there is no such ban at Luna Park or Deno’s Wonder Wheel Park. 

What’s open?

All the parks’ rides will be open — including Deno’s Wonder Wheel Park’s indoor “Stop the Zombies” ride, which will host one group at a time. Luna Park will unveil six new kiddie rides, and Deno’s new 68-foot-tall rollercoaster, the Phoenix, is expected to open in a few months. 

The only part of the park that will remain closed is Luna Park’s new amusement park that includes a large log flume ride and a ropes course, which has been in the works since 2018

For more information, visit Luna Park’s website at lunaparknyc.com and Deno’s Wonder Wheel Amusement Park’s website at denoswonderwheel.com.

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