1990 - 1999

Bus driver for 35 years on the B36 route and the shuttle bus inside Sea Gate
Born in 1953, Fred Stern recalls growing up on West 32nd Street in Coney Island, in a house next to Sam's Knishes, and going to the beach and spookhouses in the amusement area. In 1964, his family moved to neighboring Bath Beach, where he still...
Content type: Oral History Item
Tales of unusual dark rides, riots, the Tornado, and the Bowery
Jeff Brooks has worked in Coney Island for more than 50 years and still has a game on the Bowery, just outside Deno's Wonder Wheel Park. Jeff tells the story of Coney Island in the 70s, when it was reminiscent of the Wild West and owners could rent...
Content type: Oral History Item
Growing up in Coney Island and Gravesend in the 1990s and 2000s
Eric Sanchez was born in 1987 when his family lived in Coney Island. He later moved to 2121 Shore Parkway, a building in Gravesend which had a great view of Coney Island, Cropsey and Bay 49th, and Neptune Avenue and West 15th Street. As a teen, ...
Content type: Oral History Item
Community activist and reformed gang member
Community activist Keith Suber grew up in Coney Island as part of a large extended family that lived in the West End. His earliest memories include playing in Kaiser Park across the street from Gravesend Houses, where he lived with his grandmother. ...
Content type: Oral History Item
Stand-up comedian and founder of the Coney Island Comedy Festival
Irina Ginzburg, who goes by her stage name Upa, has been doing stand-up comedy for 12 years and founded the Coney Island Comedy Festival in 2019.  The festival is held at Ruby's Bar and the Coney Island Brewery. "People find their way into stand-up...
Content type: Oral History Item
Film director and screenwriter who grew up in Coney Island in the 1990s
"Coney Island made me who I am," says film director and screenwriter Stefon Bristol, who grew up in the 1990s on West 27th Street. His family moved from East Flatbush to Coney after buying one of the new townhouses built by Astella Development. He...
Content type: Oral History Item
Poet and writer from Afghanistan who grew up in Southern Brooklyn
Zohra Saed is a poet, editor and translator who was born in Jalalabad, Afghanistan, and immigrated to Brooklyn with her family as a child in the 1980s. She grew up in the close-knit Uzbek-Turkestani community on Ocean Avenue in Sheepshead Bay and...
Content type: Oral History Item
Brooklyn College history student grew up working in his family's bodega in Brighton Beach
Nasim Almantaser, 21, is a Brooklyn College student who grew up working in his Yemeni-American family's bodega in Brighton Beach. He recalls his father, who immigrated to the U.S. in the 1990s, working 12-hour shifts to support their family. As a...
Content type: Oral History Item
The Roller Coaster Reverend shares stories of Cyclone weddings
After Reverend Cliff Herring married a couple on Coney Island’s Cyclone roller coaster, the NY Daily News called him “the Roller Coaster Reverend” and “a card carrying member of the American Coaster Enthusiasts.” Reverend Herring is member #18 in a...
Content type: Oral History Item
Mother of professional boxing star Nikita Ababiy
Olga Martynchuk is the mother of 22-year-old American professional boxing star, Nikita Ababiy, whose nickname is White Chocolate. She talks about raising a boxing champion whose pro record is an amazing 10-0, with 6 KO's. Nikita attended PS 100, IS...
Content type: Oral History Item