Mayor Jean Stothert granted her first – and probably last – pardon for a pig on Monday afternoon.
The lucky porker was Sal, a 35-pound charmer who lives in Kearney, Neb. The mayor spared the animal's life in honor of BaconFest, a benefit this weekend for the Kroc Center that offers programs and activities for families in South Omaha. Sal was named for the Salvation Army, which operates the three-year-old center.
Stothert went beyond just pardoning the pig. She held him and petted him, earning several squeals in the process. Sal, who will grow to be 700 pounds or more, fascinated several children at the event, including seven who represented the Kroc Center.
Representatives from the Salvation Army gave Stothert a bouquet of bacon roses before she issued her pardon proclamation in a ceremony on the plaza in front of the City-County Building.
"I hope they smell better than Sal," she said of the gift.
She also said, however, that she found Sal sweet and handsome, worthy of pardon.
"I'm here today to save your bacon," she told him.
BaconFest is Sunday from 1 to 6 p.m. at the Kroc Center, 2825 Y St. Tickets are $25 for adults and $5 for children, and are available at the center, Hy-Vee stores and Crave restaurant at Midtown Crossing.