Barrels of fun! Coney Islanders paint Boardwalk trash cans

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Carnival-themed creations: Budding artists painted Luna Park-inspired designs on the cans.
Can-do attitude: Families such as Hector and Maritza Rios with their granddaughters Chloe, Jordynn, and Jayla left their mark on the Boardwalk with vibrant cans.
Seascapes: Tykes brightened the Boardwalk with colorful seascapes.

It was a barrel of laughs!

Coney Islanders painted trash barrels funky with seascapes to brighten up the Boardwalk on May 6. Families transformed 300 curvy canvases into vibrant portraits of the nabe’s amusement district, and let locals make their mark on the People’s Playground, said one budding artist.

“It’s like your own little piece of the boardwalk,” said Coney Islander Hector Rios, who painted three barrels with his girlfriend and three granddaughters. “It automatically creates a magnet to the Boardwalk. You got your creation sitting there, and you want to come back and see it, show it off and tell your friends ‘Hey, look! We did that!’ ”

The Parks Department’s “Barrels of Fun” event brought out nearly 100 beachgoers to beautify the barrels.

Rios peppered his can with flamingos, seagulls, and scrawled, “Mi playa es su playa,” or “My beach is your beach.” His granddaughters went for a more extreme paint job with a vibrant splatter of neon purple and orange.

Others celebrated Coney’s colorful history with elaborate portraits of the amusement district aimed to inspire the nabe’s tykes.

“Anything that’s going to be inspirational to kids and help feed their immigration, that’s great,” said lifelong Coney Islander William Petrosino, who has worked various positions at the Cyclone since the ’90s and is known in the area for his sand sculptures. “With all the turmoil that’s going on in the world, events like this that celebrate something positive, bring the community together — we need more of those.”

Reach reporter Caroline Spivack at or by calling (718) 260–2523. Follow her on Twitter @carolinespivack.
Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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