Arts & Culture

Pigging Out

Barnyard animals race through the streets of Pigtown this weekend.

Festivals around the country feature the same things: arts and crafts, fried food, and cover bands. But four pigs running while residents cheer them on? Only in Baltimore. 

The annual Pigtown Festival (October 11) celebrates its namesake neighborhood and benefits Pigtown Main Street, a nonprofit revitalizing Washington Boulevard. 

“No matter what else has been going on in the neighborhood, this festival has endured,” says Pigtown Main Street executive director Ben Hyman. 

In its 13th year, the event will have a carnival theme and, of course, the pig raceknown as “Squeakness”a tribute to Pigtown’s past. (In the 1800s, livestock arriving on the B&O Railroad were herded through the streets en route to butchering.) 

“People buy raffle tickets to pick a favorite pig,” Hyman says. “They demand this race. We had a festival in the spring and the most common question was ‘Where are the pigs?’”