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new york aquarium spineless exhibit tentacles
Photograph: Julie Larsen Maher © WCS

There are giant tentacles hovering above the Coney Island boardwalk right now

It's not an invasion by a giant sea creature but something more fun.

Shaye Weaver
Written by
Shaye Weaver
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Like something out of a 1950s horror film, six giant red tentacles are reaching into the sky above the Coney Island boardwalk.

Luckily for us, it's part of a massive poster advertising the New York Aquarium's new "Spineless" exhibit about the world of invertebrates including octopuses, squid, sea anemones, jellyfish, and other sea animals that lack backbones.

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The huge poster stretches across a portion of the aquarium's education building and features a massive octopus with eight tentacles with the upper half of six of them continuing into the air as inflatable arms. 

Somehow, it's very fitting for Coney Island, which has been known for its zany characters and over-the-top attractions. It's also a sign of the times—the Mermaid Parade is back on in person this year, too, so the sea will reign supreme at Coney Island once again.

Spineless New York Aquarium
Photograph: Julie Larsen Maher © WCS

"Spineless" opened in August 2020 and highlights the ocean’s invertebrates by giving visitors a close-up view of the big-brained giant—a Giant Pacific Octopus—in a pop-up bubble within the animal’s habitat and pulsing jellyfish in three habitats. More than 20 species of animals including squid, cuttlefish, lobsters, crabs, sea anemones, sponges are on view.

It's open now at the New York Aquarium at 602 Surf Avenue. 

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