Valerie Lapinski

Valerie Lapinski recorded oral history interviews for the Coney Island History Project in 2007 when she came to New York after a stint as Program Director at KCAW community radio in Sitka, Alaska. One of her first interviews was with longtime KCAW programmer and Coney Island native Freda Aron, who was then 92. Valerie is currently the Managing Producer for video at Vox and has worked in multimedia production at Guardian US, Fast Company and TIME.  She has an MA from the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism.

Interviews

New York Aquarium volunteer
Debra moved to Coney Island at the age of 7 and recalls some of her fondest memories, including the animal nursery, volunteering at the New York Aquarium, Bread and Puppet Theater and the B&B Carousell. She also compares Coney Island to other...
Poet and writer
Meg Feeley was born in Brooklyn. Her grandfather owned Ben Kallman's Frosted Foods, which introduced frozen corn on the cob to Coney Island as a snack food. Among her memories are a renegade ride on the Thunderbolt on a February night in the...
Artist and photographer
Lily Binder has photographed Coney Island extensively since her first visit in the 1970s. She claims that "The Cyclone is the most physically and mentally cleansing minute of your life because you can't think. It's pure adrenaline......
Radio broadcaster and Coney Island native
Freda Aron, née Umansky, was born in Brooklyn in 1915 and grew up in Coney Island in the 1920s and '30s as the child of Russian immigrant parents. After attending Bay Ridge Girls High School, she graduated from Lincoln High School's first...
Helping his Dad run a dark ride called the House of Horrors
Joel Minesquero's father operated a spookhouse and performed in the sideshow in Coney Island. Joel takes us on a tour of his favorite spots and reminisces about his rides on the Parachute Jump and his efforts as an outside talker for his father...