The 2024 World’s Strongest Man contest impacting Myrtle Beach traffic. Five things to know

For the second consecutive year, the sounds and sights of gargantuan athletes lifting colossal amounts of weight have been a prominent fixture of downtown Myrtle Beach.

The 2024 World’s Strongest Man contest is underway through May 5, 2024, when the new King of Strength will receive his coronation. Many spectators are attending the event, and some locals might want to visit and see what’s happening. Other locals want to know where the crowds and traffic are so they can re-route their days away from the action.

Here’s what you need to know about the 2024 World’s Strongest Man event in Myrtle Beach.

Traffic will impact downtown Myrtle Beach

The 2024 World’s Strongest Man tournament is at Burroughs & Chapin Pavilion Place at 812 North Ocean Blvd.

The City of Myrtle Beach announced in an email on April 26, 2024, that Ocean Boulevard between 8th and 9th Avenues North would be closed at differing times between April 30 and May 5. However, in a Facebook post, The City announced that Ocean Boulevard North between 8th and 9th Avenues North will stay closed until 6 a.m. Monday, May 6, 2024.

The road was supposed to close on Sunday, May 5, 2024, from 4 a.m. to 10 p.m. North Ocean Boulevard between 8th and 9th Avenues North will be open Friday, May 3, 2024, but closed from 4 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, May 4, 2024.

You need a ticket to watch the World’s Strongest Man live, but here’s what you can do for free

Spectators hoping to watch the event from the bleachers will need a ticket to get in, but people interested in just taking a peak can still do so. The event has a fan activity center next to the contest area that people walking on North Ocean Boulevard can stroll through.

A fan attempts a version of one of the lifts at the 2024 World’s Strongest Man competition. Merchandise vendors, food trucks, and a big screen showing the competition in real time are set up on the site and free to the public. Several offer spectators an opportunity to try versions of the lifts the athletes perform. Wednesday, May 1, 2024. JASON LEE/JASON LEE

There are food vendors, and one tent offers interested parties an opportunity to lift a foam replica of the log press so they can imagine large crowds cheering them on for the impressive feats of strength. There’s also a large jumbo tron in the fan area so spectators can watch the action from afar.

Why Myrtle Beach’s weather is perfect for the 2024 World’s Strongest Man

The Grand Strand’s weather forecast could help those feets of strength. The Weather Channel forecast for the remainder of the contest is around 76-77 degrees, with a minimal chance of rain throughout.

Indeed, the opening day of the 2024 World’s Strongest Man competition saw some rain during the opening moments before turning to bright skies as the day progressed. For the competitors, the Myrtle Beach weather has been picture-perfect for the event. Kevin Faires of Utah, USA, is competing in the event and said the weather was conducive to lifting thousands of pounds over the next few days.

“It’s beautiful here,” He added. “Not too hot, not too cold.”

His colleagues agreed, especially considering some of the previous conditions they’ve had to compete in. Eddie Hall, the 2017 World’s Strongest Man winner and the first human to deadlift 500 kilograms, which is just more than 1,100 pounds, is now retired from the sport but serves as a broadcaster for the 2024 contest.

The 2024 World’s Strongest Man competition is taking place at the Burroughs & Chapin Pavilion Place in Myrtle Beach this week through Sunday, May 5. Athletes from around the world are competing in various feats of strength such as the Atlas Stones, Car Walk, Hercules Hold and Fingal’s Fingers to earn the title of the 2024 World’s Strongest Man. Merchandise vendors, food trucks, and a big screen showing the the competition in real time are set up on the site and free to the public. Wednesday, May 1, 2024. JASON LEE/JASON LEE

Hall said Myrtle Beach’s weather stood in stark contrast to when he competed in Malaysia in 2015.

“The second you left your air-conditioned tent, you were drenched in sweat within minutes,” Hall said. “These guys are 400 pounds in body weight, so they’re going to sweat a lot anyway. Add heat and add humidity; it’s one uncomfortable circumstance.”

What event does former World’s Strongest Men winner Mitch Hooper have a bet on?

During the afternoon of Tuesday, April 28, 2024, Rob Kearney and Mitchell Hooper were locked in a discussion.

They’re discussing a wager they’ve made; either the winner gets $100 or has to buy the other a beer. The two trade smack talk and juvenile humor as others enter and exit the room, with Kearney insisting he knows he will win the bet. Hooper was unfazed by Kearney’s proclamation, lifting his shirt to reveal an impressive set of abs despite weighing more than 300 pounds.

Hooper has earned the right to be confident, as he won the 2023 iteration and breezed through the 2024 contest’s first events. Hall listed Hooper as a candidate to win again in 2024, but while $100 or a beer are the prizes of a typical low-stakes bet, the circumstances are anything but.

Kearney and Hooper are wagering who will outperform the others in carrying a car shaped like a red Volkswagon Beetle.

The two discuss the bet as if the circumstances are normal, not the reality that they are some of the few men on Earth strong enough to carry the 1,000-pound shell of a car on their backs.

Because strongman— a sport in which athletes can eat as many as 5,000 calories a day— produces the most powerful humans ever witnessed, strength considered inhuman to most is commonplace amongst strongmen’s giants.

What does ‘strong’ mean to a strongman?

Competitors in the 2024 World’s Strongest Man in Myrtle Beach competition participate in the Deadlift Ladder, where athletes have to lift five barbells faster than their opponent if they can even complete the event. The first barbell weighs more than 600 pounds, and the final one weighs more than 800 pounds. Wednesday, May 1, 2024. JASON LEE/JASON LEE

Nathan Goltry, competing in his first World’s Strongest Man, dismisses his feats of power that qualify him to proclaim he is one of the strongest men ever to live. Hall, who can call himself the World’s Strongest Man, says his strength has “really come down” —yet he can still squat close to 700 pounds and deadlift around 900 pounds.

“It’s a whole life commitment to be this strong,” Hall added. “I’m quite happy leaving it to these guys.”

In the first match-up of the first event of the 2024 World’s Strongest Man contest, that sometimes downplayed strength is on full display.

Competitors Tristain Hoath and Faires participate in the Webster Stones contest, which has athletes carry two boulders of different weights along a path until they can go no further or their grip gives out —each man covering their hands with prodigious amounts of chalk to help them hold onto the rings attached to each Webster Stone. They’re so heavy that the support crew, rather burly individuals in their own right, must carry the stones one at a time with a trolley.

Both took short steps forward, Hoath’s pace faster of the two, while Faires took a more deliberative approach. The stones swayed as the two athletes walked, sometimes crashing into the sides of their legs as they pressed onward along the track. Eventually, both strongmen’s grip gave out, and Faires tumbled forward after setting his stones down for the final time, highlighting the danger associated with the sport.

Yet after straining and shaking during the event, Faires was chipper, talking to family and friends in the bleachers shortly afterward. He thought he performed well, and the Utah native, the lime green chalk he used to sustain his grip still lingering on his hands, was clear about his expectations for the rest of the contest.

“We’re going to the finals,” he said.