When visitors arrive at Pike Place Market, they are welcomed by two bronze piggybanks: Rachel, who stands proudly under the iconic “Public Market Center” sign, and her cousin, Billie, who sits comfortably on Western Avenue, at the bottom of the Hillclimb. Not only do these two pigs bring home the bacon for the Market as piggy banks, they inspired the Market’s famous “Pigs on Parade” fundraiser, which featured hundreds of painted pigs placed throughout downtown Seattle.
Both Rachel and Billie were created by Whidbey Island sculpture, Georgia Gerber. “There was this huge neighborhood pig just down the road from us on the Island,” says Georgia. “She was a well-known family pet and my inspiration for Rachel.”
Georgia loves coming to the Market and seeing visitors crowded around Rachel and Billie. “It is a dream come true to see my two girls are so beloved,” says Georgia. “I am proud that these two art pieces are helping to fund critical social services for the Market community; like senior housing, the Food Bank and tuition assistance for the Market’s preschool.”
This Mother’s Day, Billie and Rachel are honoring their mom with a Pike Place Market Charm. “When I heard they have saved up all their pennies to buy me a Market Charm for Mother’s Day, I exclaimed ‘I think I trained my girls well, ‘” says Georgia.
“This charm is much more than a wonderful gift to me; it’s a great way to support all the important work the Market does for the elderly and the poor,” says Georgia. “Funds raised by these Charms will also help expand the Market with a beautiful new public space, which will be a gift for all of us.”
“I just want to tell Rachel and Billie that I am very, very proud of them for giving me such a beautiful gift for Mother’s Day and for supporting the Market in this way. They are very caring pigs.”