Lexington man makes ‘Pig Pennies’ to commemorate annual barbecue festival

Roy's Folks

LEXINGTON, N.C. – Dwayne Padon transforms ordinary pennies into what he calls Pig Pennies.

“I wanted to just make some souvenirs to promote my hometown,” said Padon, who can trace the practice of creating elongated coins to more than 125 years ago. “1893, the Columbian Exposition – which is now known as the world fair – you’d walk up to a guy, hand him your penny and he would roll it and hand it back to you.”

Padon started making his Pig Pennies back in 2007 to commemorate the Lexington Barbecue Festival.

“First year is still my favorite one, my mom drew it and I said, ‘Just stop, that’s perfect,'” he said.

Every year he comes out with a new design, sometimes multiple designs.

“One year I had seven designs and I said that’s enough,” he said.

Even though the 2020 BBQ festival was canceled because of the pandemic, Padon decided to make one anyway. Just like everything else this year it became a challenge.

“It’s been the most difficult time I’d ever had rolling the coins,” he said. “Usually, I waste two hundred coins getting it set up, this year I’ve wasted about five hundred.”

But finally, 2020 made a lasting impression and maybe it’s fitting as the year winds to a close. We are looking for a little change.

You can find Dwayne Padon here on Facebook.

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