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Get rollin’! Unicycle Fest returns on Sept. 2 • Brooklyn Paper

Get rollin’! Unicycle Fest returns on Sept. 2

The unicycle fest returns on Sept. 2.
Photo by Stefano Giovannini

Dozens of unicyclists will take to the Brooklyn Bridge next month — but no, the circus isn’t in town.

The curious sight is courtesy of the second annual New York City Unicyclist Festival, a weekend-long celebration of the one-wheel wonder.

“The idea was to create a fun and exciting event that brought together hundreds of unicyclists,” said festival founder Keith Nelson, the ringleader of the Bindlestiff Family Cirkus.

It all kicks off on Sept. 2 with a ride across the Brooklyn Bridge, where most of the riders will then skillfully ride the 13 miles down to Coney Island. Last year, about 50 riders tackled the bridge, with about half then trekking the rest of the ride.

“You get laughs and stares,” said Nelson. “One or two unicycles and it’s kind of cute, but when you see 20 people, it goes beyond cute to something really intriguing. People wonder, ‘Is the circus in town?’ ”

The three-day festival also includes events on Governors Island and at Grant’s Tomb in Manhattan.

Enough people turned out over the weekend last year to rival the annual National Unicycle Convention, the largest such gathering of its kind in the US, though Nelson has his sights set on other records.

“I’d love to see 100 people on unicycles crossing the Brooklyn Bridge,” said Nelson. “I don’t think that number has ever been achieved before.”

Unicycle ride to Coney Island begins on the Manhattan side of the Brooklyn Bridge [east side of City Hall Park on Park Row, (877) 246-3537], Sept. 2, 2 pm. For info, visit www.nycunifest.com.

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