The famous Wonder Wheel on Brooklyn's Coney Island
NYC Guides

Plan Ahead for July 4th on Coney Island

June 29, 2018

Looking for the perfect way to inject some fun into the hot summer months? Consider heading to Brooklyn’s beloved Coney Island on July 4th. There’s no better place to celebrate all things America than this beachy haven, where you can enjoy the city’s finest amusement parks, a Brooklyn Cyclone’s baseball game, hot dogs, and fireworks. Make the most of your Independence Day by checking out our favorite things to do on Coney Island.

Brooklyn Cyclones

MCU Park
1904 Surf Avenue b/t 19th & 20th Streets
Brooklyn, NY 11224

This 4th of July, celebrate the most American of all sports at a Brooklyn Cyclones baseball game. The Cyclones face off against the Aberdeen Ironbirds at 3PM in a fun-filled afternoon that culminates with a stadium fireworks show at 6PM. Click here to buy tickets.

Nathan’s Famous

1310 Surf Avenue b/t Stillwell Avenue & Schweikert’s Walk
Brooklyn, NY 11224

The Original Nathan's on Coney Island | LivingIn

Nathan’s Famous is home to perhaps the most highly-anticipated event on Coney Island on July 4th: the 2018 Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest. Stop by and watch the 10-minute spectacle which will also be broadcast on ESPN. Be prepared for a jaw-dropping scene, with last year’s champion eating 72 hot dogs in about 10 minutes. Once a champion has been crowned, head inside to do some less-competitive eating of your own at the original site of the world’s most famous hot dog restaurant.

Luna Park

1000 Surf Avenue b/t 10th & 8th Streets
Brooklyn, NY 11224

Luna Park likely comes to mind when you think of Coney Island because the amusement park has been giving thrillseekers the city’s best roller coaster rides since 1884. Today it offers a wide range of adventures with popular attractions including the 1927 Cyclone roller coaster; the Wild River water luge which plunges off a 40-foot cliff; and the new Thunderbolt roller coaster which reaches speeds up to 55 mph and includes an exhilaratingly scary 90 degree drop. In terms of things to do on Coney Island, Luna Park is a must.

New York Aquarium

Surf Avenue & West 8th Street
Brooklyn, New York 11224

An entrance sign for the New York Aquarium | LivingIn

Located on the Coney Island boardwalk, the New York Aquarium is the oldest continually-operating aquarium in the United States. A celebration of all creatures under the sea, the Aquarium’s highlights include an interactive sea lion show at the Aquatheater and a special coral reef shark exhibit. After a long day in the sun, you’ll want to cool off in the 4D theater which combines 3D films with multi-sensory effects that will have the whole family entranced.

Coney Art Walls

3050 Stillwell Avenue b/t West Boardwalk & Bowery Street
Brooklyn, NY 11224

At this outdoor museum, the walls serve as ever-changing canvases for the world’s most creative street artists. With 35 new displays created this year alone, there’s enough eye candy to occupy your mind and Instagram feed for weeks. Located in the heart of the island’s entertainment district, this art mecca attracts tens of thousands of visitors every year. 

One of the incredible murals on display is by Lady Pink, a graffiti artist—and one of the first women in the street art scene—who was born in Ecuador and raised in Astoria. Her mural, one of the few remaining original art pieces in the exhibit, was inspired by the colorful and creative nature of Coney Island itself, featuring iconic attractions like Nathans, the ferris wheel, and the Thunderbolt roller coaster. Lady Pink sees Coney Island as an up-and-coming neighborhood with incredible growth in its future, an idea which is represented in the art through a mermaid holding a shovel.

Deno’s Wonder Wheel

West 12th Street & Denos D. Vourderis Place
Brooklyn, NY 11224

Deno's Wonder Wheel on Coney Island | LivingIn

During the summer months, this neighborhood amusement park is open at noon seven days a week.. It features 17 kiddie rides and four adult rides, most famously the 150-foot Wonder Wheel itself. Dating back to 1920, the Wonder Wheel provides an incredible view of the entire island from swinging and stationary cars alike! All the better to see the fireworks on Coney Island!

Grimaldi’s

1215 Surf Avenue b/t 12th Street & Henderson Walk
Brooklyn, NY 11224

Arguably New York’s most famous pizzeria chain for 100 years running, Grimaldi’s Coney Island outpost opened to great fanfare in 2012, bringing its coal-burning oven fare beachside. When it comes to finding food on Coney Island, you can’t do much better than Grimaldi’s handmade mozzarella or its dough and sauce made from a carefully-guarded secret recipe.

Coney Island’s 4th of July Fireworks

37 Riegelmann Boardwalk
Brooklyn, NY 11224

No 4th of July is complete without a spectacular fireworks show, and Coney Island is known for lighting up the skies every Independence Day. Make your way over to Coney Island Beach or Boardwalk for the show at 9:30PM!

You’ll be sure to enjoy your July 4th celebration by spending the day in one of New York City’s most iconic summer destinations.

Looking to learn more about Coney Island?
Check out our complete neighborhood guide!

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