Tats all, folks! Coney ink and bike fest is a hit

Tats all, folks! Coney ink and bike fest is a hit
Photo by Steve Solomonson

Forgetting which trains run to Coney Island is impossible when they’re tattooed on your calf.

Tattoo artists covered Coney’s faithful with permanent symbols of the People’s Playground on Sept. 18, at the 27th annual Coney Island Tattoo and Motorcycle Festival on W. 12th Street and Stillwell Avenue.

Tats included scenes of the Q train and favorite amusement rides.

Of course, Dick Zigun — the heavily tattooed unofficial mayor of Coney Island who organized the event — got in on the fun, adding a new tattoo of the iconic Cyclone to his collection of intricate ink stains.

“I’m working on covering all four limbs,” said Zigun, who only has one leg left.

The colorful street fest also featured a competition among dozens of vintage bikes — including Marine Park resident Jimmy Grillo’s 1948 Harley Davidson Pan Head, which took home the “Judge’s Choice Award.”

The event was a far cry from years past, when it was staged in semi-secrecy on the Boardwalk in the days before tattooing was legalized in New York City in 1997. The festival was eventually moved to W. 10th Street, where it was sponsored by the former Astroland amusement park, before switching to its present location at Sideshows by the Seashore.