After 46 summers of being in the making people happy business, Coney Island‘s Astroland closed its gates for good early last Monday Morning.

New Yorkers, mermaids, professional arm wrestlers, professional beard and mustachers, and real estate savvy tourists knew it was coming.  In 2006, Thor Equities purchased the three-acre site where the Carnival of Kitsch resided with plans to “revitalize” the neighborhood in conjunction with (or in opposition to) the City.  Ever since, Astroland owner/operator Carol Hill Albert has been in negotiations with Thor about which summer would be amusement park’s last.

Getty Images composed a fantastic, Webby Award-winning, eight-minute documentary near the end of Astroland’s 2007 season, when no one was sure if it would be around for another year.  It’s a great little glimpse into the gritty, fun for all ages, New York scene:

If you think the above video isn’t good enough for posterity and you have some cash to burn, you can recreate your own Astroland.  Hill is selling everything except the Wonder Wheel and the Cyclone (they’re city landmarks – and below you can check out what it’s like to ride the latter).

Thor is also reportedly in touch with amusment operators who share its “vision of beginning the revitalization of Coney Island.”  So, there’s always a shot Astroland’s urban-real-estate-developer-approved successor won’t be so bad.

But that won’t help Anthony Messiana.  The nine-year old Coney Island resident told the Daily News, “Only when something really, really bad happens, do I cry.  When they start to tear down Astroland I’m gonna cry like crazy.”

Photo by Seamus Murray

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