I remember back in April, on opening day of the Coney Island season, taking my kid to Deno's Wonder Wheel Amusement Park, and hearing the calming assurances of its owners that, even if Astroland is to disappear this season, Deno's would be around for many years to come.
Well, not while Joe Sitt is still living and scheming!
I guess Dennis and Steve Vourderis, who own and operate the park, weren't fully expressing their actual situation. For, according to an article in the Kings Courier, Deno's may be edging into Astroland-land.
Deno's operates on 80,000 square feet of space, the combines acreage of two plot owned by Jack Ward of Ward Realty and leased to the Vourderis family since 1970. According to the Courier, Sitt is close to buying the land from Ward for $11 million. Under their deal, the Vouderis brothers will be given the opportunity to match the offer in 30 days. How many of you out there think Dennis and Steve have $11 million sitting around doing nothing? If you do, you're as dumb as Joe Sitt thinks you are.
There is a modicum of good news. The article states:
Vourderis said the brothers do have some leverage, though, as the lease also states that even if the property is sold, the long-term lease states the kiddie park can’t be moved until the Wheel turns 100 in 2020.
Still, one can't get past the idea that Sitt wants it all—the adult's fun, the kiddies' fun. No fun must be allowed to exist at Coney by Sitt-style fun, the kind with hotel and condos attached, and a big fat Starbucks in the middle.
So much for Sitt's recent efforts to win over the public. What is it with this man? It's as if he dead set on obliterating every last vestige of the old Coney. Nothing should remain to remind folks that we they had something better than the Branson, MO, glitz mall model he's shopping around.
You think the bloggers went against you before, Joe? Well, if this Deno's thing is true, just wait.