Tricia Vita

Tricia Vita spent the first 17 years of her life traveling with carnivals, where her first job was picking up darts and replacing busted balloons in her mother's dart game. A graduate of Sarah Lawrence College, she has worked as a writer, translator and book scout in New York. As administrative director of the Coney Island History Project since 2007, she helps plan programming and manage a multilingual oral history project, year-round walking tours, and a free exhibit center. Tricia earned a Certificate in Reminiscence and Life Story from the University of Wisconsin--Superior and creates reminiscence activities at senior centers for the History Project.

Interviews

Memories of growing up on West 29th Street in Coney Island in the 1940s and '50s
Sheldon Krimsky and his family lived in an apartment at 2995 West 29th Street from the time he was 4 until he graduated from college. He shares memories of growing up in the 1940s and '50s: playing stickball and street games like Ringelevio;...
Brooklyn artist who emigrated from Russia as a child is drawn to Ocean Parkway and Brighton Beach
Born in St. Petersburg, Russia in 1975, artist Alisa Minyukova immigrated to New York City with her mother and grandmother in 1981 and grew up on the Lower East Side. In a 2016 essay titled "Food Stamps and Caviar: How I moved to Brighton Beach,"...
Memories of growing up at Bensonhurst's Termini's Bakery and riding Coney Island's Astroland Rocket
Richard Termini's earliest memories are of playing under the El on New Utrecht Avenue in Bensonhurst, where his family operated Termini's Bakery. Founded by his grandfather Giuseppe 'Joe' Termini in Manhattan in the early years of the 20th century,...
A lifelong resident's memories of growing up in Coney Island's Gravesend Houses and Kaiser Park
Born and raised in Coney Island, Maria Navarro says her family came here from Morovis, Puerto Rico in 1957 and lived on West 36th, 27th, 21st, 28th and 29th Streets before settling in Gravesend Houses in 1970.  "Everybody knows each other," says...
Resident of Coney Island for 47 years and retired transit cleaner at Stillwell Terminal
Lorraine Ross recalls moving to Coney Island on April 1st, 1973,  never imagining she would stay so long. Now 72 and retired, she first lived in an apartment on West 36th Street, where she raised her sons, before moving to Gravesend Houses, where...
Artist whose watercolors of the Astroland Rocket and Wonder Wheel sign are emblematic of Coney Island
Watercolor artist Frederick Brosen is a native New Yorker whose boyhood memories include Steeplechase's revolving barrel at the park's entrance, wooden slide, and horse race ride.  As a father, he rediscovered the joy of Coney Island through a...
Ride operator at Deno's Wonder Wheel Park for 11 years and Michael Jackson impressionist
Robert Serrano, Jr. has been working at Deno's Wonder Wheel Park for the past 11 years and says he can't wait for the park's celebration of the 100th anniversary of the Wonder Wheel in 2020.  As a ride operator, his favorite ride to operate is the...
A voice actor's reflections on how growing up in Coney Island in the 1990s shaped her imagination
Tiana Camacho is a professional voice over actress for video games, anime, radio plays, and commercials who grew up in Coney Island in the 1990s.  When her family moved from Gravesend Houses to a house on West 19th Street next to the Coney Island...
Retired arcade operator's memories of when Coney Island's amusements were open in the wintertime
On a sunny day in January on the Boardwalk, Stanley Fox, whose family operated arcades in Coney Island from 1949 through 1981, recalls the names of  businesses that were open in the winter back in the day: The Oceanside, Playland, Stauch's and Faber...