If we're now Post-Labor Day, that means it's time for the second annual Astroland Deathwatch Follies. The game started in earnest over the long weekend, threats by the amusement park, which was sold to developer Joe Sitt, to close its doors at 1PM on Thursday (even though the official closing day is Sunday). A letter threatening Astroland's suicide surfaced over the weekend. Followers of the first annual deathwatch follies will recall Astroland's "last day" on a September Sunday afternoon last year, followed by a one-year lease extension in October. The current lease runs through January, which allows for significant brinksmanship. The park's former owner Carol Albert, who sold to Thor Equities for $30 million in 2006, and could end up repaying nearly half the purchase price in rent if there are more leases, is looking for a lease through 2010, which is the earliest any development work could start. (Presuming anyone can find financing for Coney mega-projects by then.) Meanwhile, Thor says it won't use the land for school bus parking (which has been the fate of some of its property) and expresses disappointment that Ms. Albert “has decided to give up on the future of Coney Island." A spokesperson also promises "amusements, games, shopping and entertainment galore" on the property next year. Will Astroland's "last day" be Thursday or Sunday? Will it really be a "last day"? Stay tuned.
· Coney Island's Astroland vows to close unless new lease signed [NYDN]
· GL Analysis: It's Astroland Deathwatch Week [Gowanus Lounge]
· Coney Island Report: Astroland's Last Day [Curbed]