Lofty kite festival transforms The People’s Playground into an aerial theater

Coney Island high-flyer Juan Valentin has lofty ideas as he participates in a flutter-festival, presented by the Kites in Motion Club.
Photo by Arthur De Gaeta

Simple physics transformed the People’s Playground into an aerial theater over the weekend, luring tethered aircraft buffs to do what nature intended: Go fly a kite!

Proper balance, the correct flight angle, plus a steady ocean breeze, set the stage for aficionados to show off their skills and showmanship during the two-day fly-fest, presented by the Kite in Motion Club in Coney Island.

There were octopus kites, dual and quad ones, too, coursing along the beach from W. Eight Street to the Steeplechase fishing pier on two designated kite fields — one for club members and another for the public.

Benjamin Franklin would have been proud of nimble-fingered marrieds Dorothy and Charles Stewart. The club members schlepped over from Queens to dance in the skies above the storied white sands.

They brought along four kites, including some rainbow-hued monsters with long, curling tails to whip up top speeds, making them soar to lofty heights with a gentle flick of the wrist.

“Coney Island is good during the off-season,” explained Charles Stewart, a kite dealer who has been flying kites for 16 years, routinely visiting Jones Beach and Liberty State Park after the summer crowds have floated away.

Stewart, who said he flies for the fun of it, offered a high and mighty tip.

“The best kite is the one that flies!”

More from Around New York