coney island

Dawn Raffel's new book, "The Strange Case Of Dr. Couney: How A Mysterious European Showman Saved Thousands Of American Babies" tells the extraordinary tale of how a mysterious immigrant "doctor" became the revolutionary innovator of saving premature babies--by placing them in incubators in World's Fair side shows and on Coney Island and Atlantic City.

How Dr. Couney became the savior to families with premature infants, known then as "weaklings"--while ignoring the scorn of the medical establishment and fighting the climate of eugenics is one of the most astounding stories of modern medicine.

Bending Steel is a documentary from filmmakers Dave Carroll and Ryan Scafuro. It explores the life of 43 year-old Chris Schoeck, a Queens, NY native who is training to become a professional Oldetime Strongman. The story follows Chris’ journey from his early days training in a small basement storage unit, to his very first performance on the big stage at New York’s historic Coney Island.

The film will screen at FilmColumbia on Saturday, October 26th at 5pm with a presentation by Schoeck to follow.

Joe Donahue spoke with Chris at Argot Studios in NYC. During the interview Chris ripped a deck of cards in half and bent a steel spike. Videos below.