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Get Your Freak On

Okay, I know that it SNOWED last night. (Seriously, Mother Nature? COME ON.) But here’s a sure sign that summer is no-kidding-really-truly coming right around the corner: Saturday marks the season opening of the Coney Island Circus Sideshow!

I went for the first time only a few years ago and afterward kicked myself for taking so long–it’s a hoot, people!  After paying the nominal admission fee (ten bucks), settle yourself down on the (admittedly) gritty and sticky bleachers and prepare yourself for 45 minutes of cheesy fun. Fire eaters, glass chewers, snake charmers, sword swallowers, ventriloquists, people walking on glass or a bed of nails…just name anything that will make you squirm and I guarantee at least one of the performers can or will do it. Its campy, it’s bawdy and it’s crazy fun.

After the show, grab a drink next door at the Freak Bar, head over for a terrifying ride on the Cyclone or Wonder Wheel, then grab a dog at Nathan’s. It’s Coney Island…you need to take all of it in!

Oh–and for those who are looking for a career change, the sideshow troupe operates a school, where they’ll teach you how to breathe fire or become a human blockhead and hammer nails up your nose. (Because you really need to know how to do that.) In fact they claim that their facility, “is to sideshow culture what the Actor’s Studio is to American acting: we are the International Center of Sideshow Arts.”

Who’s going to disagree?