Queens’ own strong man provides lessons in strength to live by
In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, audiences from around the country were wowed by the feats of strength exhibited by men who were part of an old-time tradition. Called strongmen, they were a major attraction at places such as Coney Island less than 100 years ago.
Today, the traditional exhibition of men bending steel or ripping decks of cards in half is a rare pageant, but Queens is home to one of the men trying to revive the vaudeville era sport: Chris “Wonder” Schoeck, 47, of Astoria.
A conversation with the Douglaston native and personal trainer can easily expose his social anxiety, which brings to question how he has been able to exhibit his strength in front of a crowd.