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Access Points 19: Macy’s Pink Pig ride at Lenox Square

Pink Pig Ride in the Holiday Forest (Small)

It's the Pink Pig at the Lenox Square Macy's! Photo by Barry Williams

The guesses for this week’s Access Points photo game were a-plenty — The Vortex, the eye of the Atlanta Hawk, the Big Chicken, an Elmo float — but in fact, it was a little Atlanta holiday tradition you can find these days at Lenox Square.

Yes, Laura, it is the Pink Pig at Macy’s. You were the first to identify it, so you win four passes from Macy’s for two rides aboard the Pig!

FEA LV Pink Pig 5.JPG_1425049 (Small)

Percival, one of the Monorail Twins, in their glory days. AJC file photo

The modern Pink Pig is a 3 1/2-minute ride based on a holiday attraction that appeared a the downtown Atlanta Rich’s store beginning in 1953. Priscilla, the original Pink Pig, was a sales-driving monorail that flew along the department store ceiling, giving kids an overhead view of the dreamy toy department. Another pig, Percival, was added later. Later on, the monorail moved to the roof the department store, and offered up a view of downtown Atlanta and Rich’s Great Tree.

But Rich’s and its pigs left downtown in 1991, and although the ride appeared for a few years at the Egleston Festival of Trees, it was eventually deemed too fragile. Here are some of  WSB’s then-and-now photos of the Pink Pig.

Inside the Pink Pig Ride 1 (Small)

Inside the Pink Pig ride. Photo by Barry Williams

The new Pink Pig debuted in a white tent outside the Lenox Square Macy’sin 2003, and has re-appeared every winter since. It’s a train now, not a monorail, and winds through a forest of inflatable trees and pink memorabilia. (Some of you noticed the pink reflection in the eye in the Access Points shot — not surprisingly, pink lights are standard decoration around the Pink Pig.) Macy’s says annual Pink Pig ridership is about 100,000.

Although it doesn’t offer quite the overhead holiday toy tease that Priscilla and Percival did, the gift shop is loaded with Pink Pig shirts, stuffed animals, ornaments and stickers, and it’s not far from the Macy’s Great Tree. A portion of the proceeds from the ride are donated to Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.

The ride opened in November — here are Pink Pig construction photos — and will take passengers through Jan. 3. Not to be forgotten, the old gal, Priscilla, is displayed in the tent, just high enough to have a good view of all the little kids on the train below.

Want to go? The Pink Pig at Macy’s-Lenox Square. Runs through Jan. 3. $3. Macy’s Lenox Square, 3399 Peachtree Road N.E., Atlanta. www.macys.com/campaign/pinkpig/home.jsp

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9 comments Add your comment

Anne

March 21st, 2010
8:39 am

I also miss the old Rich’s….I grew up in that store and have such wonderful memories of all downtown. I wish I had a nickel for every time I walked from Rich’s to Davisons….and felt very safe at the age of 12 or so….on through high school. My girlfriends and I always ate at the S&W across from Davisons (if we had enough money) or at Krystal or in the basement at Rich’s. Such fun we had!

Stacy

December 21st, 2009
3:07 pm

Steak Shapiro hit on me at Houston’s on Peachtree. He is a creep!

Delmar ATLien

December 19th, 2009
7:29 am

Oh yeah, I miss Rich’s and Davison’s too ;-(

Delmar ATLien

December 19th, 2009
7:27 am

Born and raised in Atlanta — NOT a Grady baby. I rode the Pink Pig when it was on top of the Rich’s building. I remember riding it for the first time — it was scary. Didn’t it go over the side of the building (roof) at one point? But afterwards, it was fun because I rode it with my siblings. Memories, rituals, family time — things people don’t know about these days. No special effects, just a simple slow, fun ride. Afterwards, we went shopping in the gift shop for presents for the family. I don’t recall souvenirs like they sell today — expensive T-shirts, high priced ticket items, etc. It was a place where kids could buy Christmas presents for little or nothing. Presents were cheap, but to a kid, it was grand!!! Nostalgia!!! I take my kids every year to ride the Pink Pig — it’s a tradition!!!

Justine

December 19th, 2009
5:09 am

20 years ago when I worked with children we saved and went to the Pink Pig on top of the REAL RICHS. It was shaped like a train and the fun part was adults squeezing inside. I have not taken children to ride this because it is no different than anything else. When will Atlanta learn history is what makes things great. By the way am I the only person who misses Richs and Davidsons?????????????????

David

December 19th, 2009
5:08 am

Well, it’s actually $3.00. After living here 20 years and finally having a kid, we decided to check this out a week ago. Glad we went to see what the fuss is all about, but it would not have been worth waiting in a long line (which formed by the time we were done). Dress warmly because the tent didn’t feel heated in any way.

LydiasDad

December 19th, 2009
1:24 am

Why do people still waste time with this? It’s a small train, shaped like a pig, that goes around in a circle in a big white tent. It costs $5 or so. It’s not even worth it for nostalgic reason. Why do people think it’s so great? My daughter was bored with it when she was 4.

Rusty

December 17th, 2009
5:07 pm

I rode this when I was very little. I think it was the train version by that time though.

[...] UPDATE 12/17: Want to know the answer? Here it is! [...]