Dream Come True: Markowitz Tours Newly Completed Amphitheater

Former Borough President Marty Markowitz at the Coney Island Amphitheater. (Photo: Alex Ellefson / Sheepshead Bites)
Former Borough President Marty Markowitz at the Coney Island Amphitheater. (Photo: Alex Ellefson / Sheepshead Bites)

For many, it was a milestone in the revitalization of Coney Island. For one person, it was a dream come true. Former Borough President Marty Markowitz saw his vision of building an oceanside concert venue realized Wednesday when officials held a formal ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Coney Island Amphitheater.

“Would I have wanted it bigger? Sure,” Markowitz said while standing on the site of newly-constructed 5,000-seat amphitheater. “But it’s a dream come true. It completes the realization that Coney Island is America’s playground. And it ensures the music will always be part of the attractions.”

Markowitz didn’t share the stage with elected officials and business executives during a press conference at the ceremony. But he was repeatedly recognized as the project’s visionary and champion.

“There is a place in this world for sheer force of will. And for vision and for love of your borough and your people. So, my dear friends, let’s thank Marty Markowitz,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “You kept coming back year after year with those wonderful concerts. And you wanted something even more.”

Mayor Bill de Blasio cuts the ribbon on the newly constructed Coney Island Amphitheater. (Photo: Alex Ellefson / Sheepshead Bites)
Mayor Bill de Blasio cuts the ribbon on the newly constructed Coney Island Amphitheater. (Photo: Alex Ellefson / Sheepshead Bites)

Markowitz, whose push for the new amphitheater was not without controversy, envisioned it as a permanent home for his annual Seaside Summer Concert Series. He explained that weather was the catalyst for his desire to to create an entertainment space in Coney Island.

“From day one, we wanted it covered because I would start out all day nervous as anything, especially with the slightest hint that there could be a passing shower,” he said. “So all that mystery is gone now and the people promoting the show will have one less stress factor, which will save them 20 years in their life.”

The torch for the Seaside Summer Concert Series has been passed to the new Borough President, Eric Adams, who announced this year’s lineup during the ribbon-cutting ceremony. More information about the concert series can be found at brooklynconcerts.com or by calling 718-222-0600.

“This is now the home of the seaside summer concert series,” Adams said. “This will bring families together. That’s what Brooklyn was always about. That’s what my predecessor understood.”

The amphitheater still has a ways to go before construction is complete. As we previously reported, construction crews narrowly reached the finish line readying the venue for its first concert on Saturday — and the renovation of the landmarked Childs Restaurant is expected to finish within the next year, developer iStar Financial’s CEO Jay Sugarman said during the ceremony.

Markowitz said he’s been following the project closely as the amphitheater slowly took shape along the boardwalk. And he still has big dreams about how the venue will be used in the future.

“I’ve been here several times watching the progress as if, in some ways, I was building it brick by brick myself. It’s very exciting,” he said. “And in the days ahead, I wouldn’t be surprised if this becomes home to some national ballet company or they will take a summer residence here. Who knows?”

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  1. Your dream Marty was to build this amphitheater in Asser Levy Park. Fortunately the residents killed that fiasco.
    Let’s see how the community in Coney Island reacts to the Noise, and traffic,especially this July 4th weekend.
    Lots of luck.

  2. Limited seating. Free concerts should be elsewhere and Ampitheater used only when it rains for the free Thurs night concerts.

  3. So it looks like anyone who works for a living wont be able to get tickets unless they use a vacation day or sick day. I now see this as a white elephant. I used to love bringing my chair and enjoying a show, no ticket needed.

  4. These past middle aged White males control South Brooklyn politics with an iron fist. They make less than most of CIH’s nurses make, that is if they come by their living honestly, lol. How about some Indian guy getting a paultry Assembly person position or State Senate position. Maybe some White guy would love to be a local police captain or CEO of CIH, making a six figure income honestly. Quit hogging all of South Brooklyn’s elected positions.

  5. NYC has become a city of free-loaders, just read these comments from all who wish to nourish off the public teat. Now the city is feeding children (up to age 18) all summer long with free breakfasts and lunch and Scott Stringer is handing out free sunscreen at public pools. I guess the USSR and its Communist followers have actually won the Cold War. I admire all you Russian immigrants who ruined the USSR and now will work you wiles on the USA. But, wait till the money runs out.

  6. The free concerts were there since the late 70s. Don’t compare your dribble with a nice thing that has been going on for almost 40 year.

  7. Sell out to bloomberg and quinn. Not the mensch he used to be sticking up for working class people.

  8. Mr. Jyckle, you are correct the concerts have been there for almost 40 years, but the operative word is “free”. These days everyone thinks everything should be free and I wonder who is going to pay for all these wonderful nice things that you think we are entitled to?

  9. It so happens to all you people who have not lived here most of your lives you no nothing about what went on in the past.. These concerts were always free because the sponsors paid all the performers. fees, yes they were free but many paid 5 dollars to sit near the stage.

  10. I confess, I have only lived here since 1973 and I am well aware of Marty’s concerts in Seaside/Asser Levy Park. So tell me, just how high do taxes have to go before you squawk and say enough redistribution of your wealth is enough? As for me, I am almost at the burst level, having recently gotten my July real estate tax bill.

  11. They had many corporate sponsors so don’t tell me it was all coming out of your pockets.

  12. And you are a douche and need to stop commenting. Lose the “Anonymous” handle and let’s see how much of a big shot you are.

  13. Do you mean “public tit”?
    Milk that baby!
    I’m sure more “free” stuff can be expected if the Hill-da-Beast gets elected President. Soon people will have so many benies and with grass smoking allowed no body will notice or care that the country is going down the toilet. How nice.

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