Riding in a Coney wonderland! Luna Park opens for winter season for first time in 120 years

Luna Park Coney Island opening
Luna Park’s owners opened the amusement park for Frost Fest on Nov. 18.
Photo by Jada Camille

Luna Park, one of Coney Island’s beloved amusement parks, has extended its summertime excitement into the winter months for the first time ever with Frost Fest, a holiday celebration full of winter activities. 

On select days from now through Jan. 7, the park — which is usually closed between September and March — will welcome visitors of all ages to enjoy their winter-themed playground with an ice skating rink, rides and attractions, twinkling lights and festive décor, photos with Santa, shopping and festive food options.

Luna Park celebrates its winter Frost Fest with tree lighting ceremony.
The park kicked off the winter season with a tree lighting ceremony. Photo by Jada Camille

The team launched its winter wonderland on Nov. 18 with a tree lighting ceremony attended by costumed carolers and stilt walkers, local elected officials, and special words from Luna Park’s owner Alessandro Zamperla.

“Luna Park is the heart of south Brooklyn and the heart of Coney Island and this is really the moment for people to have an open heart and share joy,” he told Brooklyn Paper. “We’ve gotten a lot of feedback in terms of enthusiasm and excitement as soon as people are able to walk in and see what we’ve created.”

At the tree lighting ceremony, Zamperla said the wintertime opening was a “historical event” that credits the unique energy of Coney Island, its community and the park’s 120-year-old legacy. 

“Coney Island is the place where people are together, where people can create memorable experiences and can have a really great human connection. We’re making history today,” he said.

Council Member Ari Kagan, who represents the district, also addressed the crowd and said he hopes the event comes back every year. 

Luna Park frost fest
“Frost Fest” offers seasonal food, shopping, rides, and attractions. Photo by Jada Camille

“This is the first one but they’ll be many more,” Kagan said. “It’s about enjoyment, it’s about love, it’s about bringing people and community together so I’m very happy to be with you tonight and celebrate this grand opening.”

In between rides on the Tickler or ElectroSpin, park visitors can stop by one of the booths to grab a cup of hot apple cider or a sweet treat. Littles ones can pose for a picture with carolers or head to Santa’s workshop to send a letter to the North Pole.

Adrianne Grimes, who brought her nephew and his friend to the opening day, said the trio came all the way from Manhattan just to enjoy the merry festivities.

“It’s great for the community and just something lively to do,” Grimes told Brooklyn Paper. “It’s very enjoyable for the children and something different.”

Amir, her 9-year-old nephew, said he was most excited to ride rides with his friend. 

“I’m happy and excited,” Amir told Brooklyn Paper. “I feel happy because I can play with my friend.”

While the chilly November weather is certainly a change from the sunny days and warm breezes that usually accompany a day at Luna Park, Zamperla said the spirit of the park is the same. 

“We hope people will come out and experience something that’s only at Luna Park,” Zamperla said. “Nothing is like the park.”