Must-See Coney Island
by nycgo.com staff, 05/14/2014
Photo: Jen Davis
MCU Park, 1904 Surf Ave., 718-449-8497
The Brooklyn Cyclones, the New York Mets' Short-Season Class A minor league club, play in picturesque MCU Park. The smell of ocean air permeates the stadium, situated right on the boardwalk and just a few blocks from local attractions like Deno's Wonder Wheel and Luna Park. In the distance beyond the left-field wall, fans can see the roller coaster that inspired the team's name slowly rise and suddenly plunge on its first terrifying drop—and during night games, neon-colored fluorescent rings circling the ballpark's stadium lights are a perfect complement to the carnivalesque setting. The on-field competition of scrappy, hardworking ballplayers harks back to the good ol' days of Brooklyn baseball—as does the intimate setting, where the players on the field can hear what fans yell out from the stands and vice versa. In the grand tradition of the minor leagues, the Cyclones are known for their outlandish promotions, like having offered free tickets for life to anyone who would agree to name their child Brooklyn or Cy. In addition to Star Wars Night (August 2) and Zombie Night (July 2), the highlight of this summer will no doubt be Seinfeld Night (July 5), which will include Festivus poles, Keith Hernandez "magic loogie" bobbleheads and the (temporary) renaming of the stadium as Vandelay Industries Park. If you're heading to a game, look out for the statue of Jackie Robinson and Pee Wee Reese near the main gate—it shows Reese with his arm around Robinson, a famous gesture of solidarity that was re-created in the film 42.