We’re thrilled to announce the Coney Island History Project has been awarded funding of $8,915 from Humanities New York to produce a second season of our popular podcast, Coney Island Stories.
HNY “SHARP” (Sustaining the Humanities Through the American Rescue Plan) Grants provide funds for humanities projects that serve audiences throughout New York and are made possible with funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities via the federal American Rescue Plan Act.
Season Two of our podcast will feature sequential episodes about growing up in Coney Island with oral history clips from our archive. The first episode, "Growing Up in the 1930s," is scheduled to debut in March 2022 and will be followed by monthly episodes for each decade through the 2000s.
The oral history narrators in this podcast series describe growing up during the Depression and World War II, urban renewal (a narrator whose family was evicted calls it “urban removal”), the residential development of middle-income co-ops and public housing, and the decline of the amusement area and its eventual revival. Across the generations, their commonalities include the beach, the boardwalk, and jobs in the amusement area.
"We’re extremely grateful for the support we’ve received enabling us to record, preserve, and make available so many voices and narratives that tell the fascinating story of Coney Island,” said Executive Director Charles Denson. "Coney Island has an incredibly complex history, and diverse first person accounts provide an irreplaceable resource for the future.”
U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer applauded the HNY Sharp Action Grants, which were awarded to 43 New York cultural nonprofits. “As Majority Leader, I was proud to champion and pass the American Rescue Plan, which provides this funding for New York’s cultural nonprofits affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic did not extinguish our thirst for cultural education and this critical funding will strengthen New York’s rich cultural and local history for some time to come.”
The first season of Coney Island Stories launched in December 2020 as the History Project pivoted from in-person activities to virtual programming during the pandemic. Among the 11 episodes in Season One are “A Century of Bathhouses,” “Beach Days,” “Legendary Roller Coasters,” and “Mermaid Avenue.” Listen and subscribe via your favorite podcast app or the podcast page on the Coney Island History Project's website.