The town of Rabbit Hash, Kentucky, not only has a funny name but a funny way of electing its mayors. Voters pay $1 per vote--as many as they care to cast--and among the candidates in the November 2 election are a pot-bellied pig, a donkey and a labrador retriever.
The Rabbit Hash Historical Society owns the town--a collection of seven wooden buildings on the Ohio River, about 30 miles southwest of Cincinnati. It's registered as a National Historic District, and its upkeep needs prompted the first mayoral contest as a fundraiser in 1998.
The winner was a dog named Goofy. "He was an excellent mayor," says Don Clare, the society's president. "He'd lay in the road--he was a canine speedbump."
Reflecting his style, Goofy's election was low-key but raised some $9,000 toward the restoration of a church. After a suitable mourning period following Goofy's euthanization a couple years ago, Clare launched the current campaign, in which another dog named Junior appears to have the edge. The pig's anti-hog-roasting platform, while understandable, flaunts an important local custom, while the donkey is considered a turncoat by some for running as a Republican.
These controversies have caught the attention of the media--including a filmmaker named Jude Gerard Prest, whose recent documentary about the town is working the festival circuit.
Clare hopes this year's election will raise even more funds. "We're going to do it in the true Kentucky style," he says, "which is whoever has the most money wins."