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The spin zone: Coney Island’s latest thrill ride

The spin zone: Coney Island’s latest thrill ride
Spin cycle: Riders experience three g's as they spin around on the Endeavor at Luna Park.

Photo by Georgine Benvenuto

It’s got a tilt and a whirl!

Luna Park’s newest thrill ride is the adrenaline-pumping Endeavor, a ride that spins you on an ever-tilting axis like a centrifuge.

This reporter strapped himself into one of the Endeavor’s suspended chairs and took it for a literal spin on a beautiful summer afternoon in the People’s Playground. The ride was a blast — and other riders agreed.

“It’s an Endeavor to say the least!” said Milo Newman after hopping out of his seat, still giddy from the ride. “It was cool to swing over so close to the Boardwalk like that, and it was super smooth.”

The Endeavor sits at the corner of the Boardwalk and W. 15th Street in Luna Park’s Scream Zone, near the steel Thunderbolt roller coaster, which debuted in 2014.

The Endeavor, which shares its name with a retired space shuttle and a Borg-battling “Star Trek” ship, is a modern improvement on the old “Enterprise” ride, which the now-defunct Coney Island amusement park Astroland operated from the mid-1970s until 2008. But instead of the Enterprise’s caged-in carts, the Endeavor has open-air seats like those on an inverted roller coaster, so riders get an unimpeded — albeit upside-down — view of the entire park and boardwalk as they swing at the ends of the contraption’s massive arms.

The latest version marks a step forward into the 21st century, said top brass at Luna Park.

“Endeavor creates an out-of-this-galaxy experience,” Luna Park brand manager Angie Morris said. “By using state-of-the-art technology we were able to provide a ride that gives the adventurous Luna Park visitors a breathtaking experience.”

The ride starts rotating parallel to the ground and gradually tilts its way up until thrill-seekers are swinging vertically at 25 miles an hour, pressed against the seat with three times the force of gravity. Riders are hurled up towards the beach and the iconic Parachute Jump, catch an inverted view of Deno’s Wonder Wheel as they hit the peak of the Endeavor’s loop, and then come crashing back down towards earth like a space shuttle re-entering the atmosphere.

The 21st-century thrill ride was well worth the trip to the park on a crowded Sunday afternoon. This reporter just wishes it could last longer.

Endeavor at Luna Park [3029 Stillwell Ave. between the Boardwalk and Bowery Street in Coney Island, (718) 373–5862, www.lunaparknyc.com], Open Sat–Sun at 11 am, at Mon–Thu at noon. 7 credits ($7).

Reach reporter Dennis Lynch at (718) 260–2508 or e-mail him at dlynch@cnglocal.com.
Ready to go: Matthew Nosorowski gets ready for a ride on the Endeavor at Luna Park's Scream Zone.

Photo by Georgine Benvenuto

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