WALNUT GROVE, Ga. (July 28, 2023) If you have lived in Walton County for more than quarter of a century, chances are you remember the great swine caper of 1999. The big news at the time was the overnight disappearance of a pig – not a real pig – a fiberglass pig that was a well-known landmark. It was the iconic pig marking the popular Kelly’s BBQ restaurant at the crossroads of highways 81 and 138 in Walnut Grove. The famous Kelly’s BBQ mascot is still missing and here we are, 24 years later, still trying to figure out what happened to it.
Well, Blake Sears and Jessica Malloy have decided to do something about it. The have started a GoFundme account to raise the funds to replace the iconic pig atop the sign for Kelly’s BBQ owner Christy Eberhardt, .
“With the help of those that would like to right a wrong that happened two decades ago, we wanted to create a local ‘Piggy Bank’ to raise funds for a new fiberglass Pig for the owners of Kelly’s BBQ,” Malloy stated in the GoFundme account. “To give a bit of backstory for those that didn’t have the pleasure of visiting Kelly’s Pig: The pig weighed between 400 to 500 pounds and was made of fiberglass. Kelly’s opened in the early 1970s, but it did not get its memorable, short-lived, mascot until the 1980s. Despite its short life, it made an impression on the people of Walnut Grove as it was used as a reference point. Many rumors have been spread about what happened to the original Pig but we feel as those who want to pay honor to join together to right the wrong. Thus Pig 2.0 is born. We would like to gift the funds to purchase a new Walnut Grove Landmark for Kelly’s BBQ.”
Since there are ongoing talks that Highway 81 will be widened at some time in the future, they are looking to raise $2,500 in case Pig 2.0 may need to be moved at that time.
If you feel inclined to help raise funds, click or tap on this link for the GoFundme account to contribute. With a bit of luck, and some community help, when giving directions locals will again be able to say “take a right at the big pig at the corner of 81 and 138.”
And just maybe enough time has passed that we will eventually learn what happened to the pig. Surely the statute of limitations has run out by now.