Ruby’s Still Fighting for Its Life As Coney’s Opening Day Approaches

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The venerable Rubys isnt included on a list of establishments that will definitely be open when Coney Island starts its season on April 5, so we decided to check in with owner Michael Sarrel. He tells us hes presently negotiating with Joe Sitt, the landlord, who has doubled his rent, to try to open the boardwalk dive for another season. Its a coin toss at best, he tells us. Theres not that much money to be made up in Coney Island. Asked whether hell have to operate at a loss if he agrees to a higher rent, Sarrell says it depends on the weather and also on how many people return to the boardwalk now that Astroland is closed. Theres speculation hes going to get some kind of circus where the park is going to be, but thats just speculation. I expect at best to do 75 percent of what we did last year. I dont know that thats going to be enough to stay here. Its tough because weve been there so long that its in our blood. Sarrell should have a better idea of where things stand in a couple of weeks.