Priscilla the Pink Pig
Hyde Talbot of Cumming was the Pink Pig's VIP, very important patient, on Thursday.
ATLANTA -- An Atlanta holiday tradition returns to Buckhead this weekend. Macy's Pink Pig opens to the public on Saturday.
The original ride debuted at Rich's department store Downtown in 1953. The current version of the storybook ride featuring Priscilla the Pink Pig opened at Lenox Square Mall in 2003.
Dozens of local families, including Children's Healthcare of Atlanta patients, got an early taste of this year's ride at a preview party on Thursday.
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One of the first people on board was a VIP, very important patient, at Children's.
Hyde Talbot was just a toddler when he was diagnosed with Atypical HUS, a rare blood disease that attacks the kidneys. He's now five.
"Basically from 18 months until now he's lived at the hospital, and we love them," his mother Phyllis Talbot said.
After six months at Children's, three years of at-home dialysis for 10 hours a night, and regular hospital visits, Hyde was able to get a kidney transplant with an experimental treatment this past February.
"He's been doing great since then," Phyllis said with a smile. "Right now we go [to the hospital] twice a week for infusions and clinic, and that will be for the rest of his life."
On Thursday, Hyde looked like all the other happy, healthy kids enjoying the ride -- only he didn't have to wait.
In fact, his favorite part was "getting to skip through the line," he said. "It was great!"
Kids of all ages can ride Macy's Pink Pig from Saturday Oct. 29 thorugh Sunday Jan. 1.
Tickets are $3 each. A portion of the Pink Pig's proceeds benefits Children's.