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Kids all aglow when the Pink Pig rolls in

POSTED: January 5, 2009 5:00 a.m.
Kirsten Morales/The Times

Sofia Morales, 17 months, takes in the lights while riding Priscilla the Pink Pig at Macy's at Lenox Square in Altanta.

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ATLANTA — She was a little tricky to find, at first. Those little pink pigs usually are.

But once we walked onto the second floor parking deck just outside Macy’s at Lenox Square Mall in Atlanta, we were immersed in Priscilla the Pink Pig heaven.

If you haven’t been for a ride on Priscilla, it’s a treat. Mind you, not a full-on adventure — it is, essentially, a kiddie train that goes in a circle, twice, and the scenery is no more than decorated white Christmas trees and some sparkly mirrors.

But if you’re 17 months old, being on this large pink contraption with the chilly air in your hair and twinkling lights all around you is a journey into another world.

A little background: Priscilla got her start in 1953 at Rich’s department store in downtown Atlanta. For years, she gave kids a view of the store’s toy department and rode around proudly with her friend, Percival.

But when that venerable institution closed, she became a bit more wayward. She spent some time at the Atlanta History Center first, and then went to the Festival of Trees held by Egleston Children’s Hospital. In 2003, also her 50th birthday, she came to the Macy’s at Lenox Square.

And she’s been proudly twirling little kids in circles since then.

My husband, Ed, and I recently took our daughter, Sofia, to ride Priscilla. We had a few destinations in mind when we made the trip — be cause, to be honest, Priscilla herself isn’t enough to make the drive — but she certainly was a thrill for Sofia.

Tickets are $3 per passenger, but they do have bulk discounts if your child wants to ride more than once (or, for that matter, if you do). But parents, be forewarned: There’s probably a line waiting to get on the train, and that line, of course, takes you past all sort of pink and pig-themed goodies, beckoning your children to play with them and then act as if they couldn’t live a moment longer without one. You’ve been warned.

Once you’re on, though, the squirming stops and, in the case of our little one, she sat completely enthralled in the Christmas spectacle before her. When Priscilla started rolling, Sofia squealed with excitement, clapped her hands and was entranced by the flickering trees and pin lights.

From an adult’s perspective, the ride isn’t very thrilling — it’s a few fake Christmas trees decorated in just lights, and half the ride is past a large mirror, which means you’re the scenery.

But I wasn’t bothered by the scenery; rather, my husband Ed and I had fun just watching Sofia watch all the glitter around her.

And for us, that scenery was priceless.



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