Big Mark’s Action Park to Open in Coney Island for Summer 2013

Brooklyn Daily gives you the details on intense new “action park”

The Brooklyn Paper
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Coney Island is about to get some action.

A new high-intensity funzone called Big Mark’s Action Park will open this season on Stillwell Avenue between Bowery Street and the Boardwalk, and will feature a 50-foot rock climbing wall, an obstacle course, a skydiving simulator — and, of course, its own bar.

Operator Mark Zientek — owner of play-equipment rental company New Jersey Party Works — said his park will create a one-of-a-kind destination for New Yorkers and tourists with high energy levels and high-intensity activities.

“These are all really physical experiences, and it should really appeal to people with an active, outdoorsy, health-conscious lifestyle,” said Zientek. “We wanted to do something nobody else here is doing.”

Zientek’s new space — two Thor Equities-owned lots that were formerly home to Cha Cha’s Steeplechase Fun Park — came with an unexpected add-on: the Mega Whirl, an experimental amusement that got totalled by Hurricane Sandy and abandoned by its owner. But Zientek is turning a lemon into spiked lemonade, converting the car ride into an elevated alcohol pit stop called “Marco Grande’s Cantina.” Besides tropical-themed drinks and Jamaican cuisine, the bar will have live bands on Saturdays, DJs on Fridays, and a mechanical bull and foxy boxing on Thursdays — all before closing up at 11 pm. In front of the platform will be a sandy area for boozers to soak in the sun and all the fun unfolding around them.

If you’re wondering how well rock climbing and booze might mix, don’t worry — Zientek said no intoxicated people would be allowed on any of the attractions.

“It’s a place you can just come and hang out, and have fun watching the action in progress,” the big man said.

Zientek is also taking over last year’s problem-plagued zip line, and now has all necessary permits, so he plans to have it up and zipping by Easter. The high-wire thrill ride will close temporarily for renovations when the rest of his action park opens on Memorial Day, but Zientek said it will reopen for the summer with a new cable.

The park owner wouldn’t say how much tickets would cost, but he promised they would be in-line with other People’s Playground attractions, and that he would offer group discounts. Rides at Luna Park run three to six dollars, while fun at the Scream Zone can cost as much as $25.

Zientek has already gotten friendly with People’s Playground old-timers, having met Wonder Wheel owner Dennis Vourderis and joined the Alliance for Coney Island business group. He’s even working out plans for a Coney Island trivia night at the cantina with Coney Island History Project owner Charlie Denson.

For Zientek, Big Mark’s Action Park is the fulfillment of a lifelong dream to own his own amusement park. He first visited Coney Island last October at the urging of friends, and soon realized that the erstwhile site of Dreamland was the land where he could make his dream a reality.

“I visited more and more, and it was such a happening place, I wanted to be a part of what’s going on,” said Zientek.

Reach reporter Will Bredderman at or by calling (718) 260-4507. Follow him at
Updated 10:07 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

diehipster from hipster-free part of Brooklyn says:
This sounds all good - providing it doesn't attract the nasally, glow-in-the-sun, bearded, Joey Ramone/Warhol/Spindoctor lead singer hybrid, hipster pieces of sh*t to stare at real Brooklynites and take pictures with Daddy-bought cameras for their pseudo Brookyn news sites and gentrification "lookatmeeeeee" blogs. The cops should be allowed to taser any hipster emerging from the Surf/Stillwell exits.
Feb. 19, 2013, 10:40 am
ty from pps says:
Diehipster.... I could be mistaken, but I feel like you were the author of a very childish "lookatmeeeee" blog. Were you not?
Feb. 19, 2013, 11:25 am
Richard Grayson from Williamsburg says:
I am old enough to collect social security in a few months, and I was born in Brooklyn, and I find the anti-hipster comments made in these comments as disgusting as all the racist, xenophobic, sexist and homophobic comments I would hear -- thankfully, from strangers, mostly -- growing up. It is mean and nasty to single out a group of people and say they are deserving of violence.
Feb. 19, 2013, 11:52 am
Mihalis from Bay Ridge says:
I agree with you, too, Richard. Though the Brooklyn of my childhood might be a thing of the past, these comments towards one group (any group for that matter) make me sad. I miss my Brooklyn, but I wouldn't wish any thing as evil as the man/woman suggests be done to these young people. May God allow you to find peace with your neighbor.
Feb. 19, 2013, 2:49 pm
John Wasserman from Windsor Terrace says:
Pardon me, but this hipster bashing has become out of control. Forgive me saying so, but should the authorities not be involved at this point? My son Edgar was playing at a gag in Williamsburg this weekend past, and a white male driving a car yelled out something and extended his middle finger right in his general direction. His performance was not bad (comparatively speaking) but it was hard for him to "get loosely goosey", so to speak, because of his hurt feelings. Excuse the interruption.
Feb. 19, 2013, 3:56 pm
Katie McCartie from Richmond Hill says:
Coney Island has always been the park for the people. That means ALL people.
Feb. 19, 2013, 5:46 pm
Ann from Sheepshead Bay says:
So much hipster ass kissing...gross.
Feb. 19, 2013, 5:58 pm
john malatino from bayville new york says:
coney island should keep the new mega whirl because it is my favorite ride in the park
Feb. 21, 2013, 10:36 pm

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