Watch CBS News

Thousands Pack Coney Island For July 4th Holiday

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- On this 4th of July at Coney Island, the rides were spinning and so were some visitors' heads, stunned by the crowds.

"Oh my God, there's so many people here," said tourist Allison Jones. "It's cool there's a lot to do."

"A lot of people but it's good to see everybody together," said Luz Quinones. "No fighting. everything's going good."

In the holiday heat, there's no better place to find relief and relaxation then at the boardwalk. "It's insane," said Bronx resident Susan Jourdain. "It's crazy and we're still waiting for more people."

1010 WINS' Glenn Schuck reports: Every Inch Of The Beach And Boardwalk Packed With People


The ocean was jumping and the sand was packed with a sea of colorful umbrellas. Sheltered from the sun, beachgoers were honoring the true meaning of the 4th of July.

"Even though my parents come from the Dominican Republic, I was raised here and it means that I'm an American and it's great to celebrate," said Josefina Guerra from the Bronx. "Celebrate many things about being American like freedom and independence and all the rights and benefits that we have in this country."

Coney Island July 4
Umbrellas on the beach at Coney Island on July 4, 2011 (credit: CBS 2)

For many people, this holiday is not just a celebration of our nation's independence, it's another memorial day and a day for giving thanks.

"I just retired from the military after 33 years and I have a lot of friends who are still over there," said Lloyd Headley from Canarsie. "So just to be here with family, it says it all."

With a beach ready meal, Headley and his family are celebrating life today. His mother, a native of Guyana, is recovering from major heart surgery.

She moved to the states 40 years ago, but today was her first trip to Coney Island. "Today is one of my greatest joys," said Doreen Headley-Small. "I'm happy to be here. I'm thanking God for this celebration."

And what a beautiful day it turned out to be.

How are you spending the July 4th holiday? Let us know below in our comments section...

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.