By Jon Delano

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — It’s not a traditional ballot box, but Wholey’s in the Strip District is awaiting a final vote count.

“We’ve had over 1,000 entries,” Jim Wholey told KDKA money editor Jon Delano on Monday.

You don’t usually think of fish when you think of Pittsburgh, but you do think of Wholey’s and their iconic smiling fish sign.

Now Wholey’s is looking for a new location for that sign, and they’re asking for suggestions.

It’s a democratic process — a vote to relocate this fish sign now on a 15th Street building, soon to be a residential condo and no longer owned by the Wholey family.

Jim Wholey says the public has come through with many great ideas.

One popular idea — Mt. Washington.

“Yeah, Mt. Washington would be great,” said Ed Pazul of Cheswick.

“Maybe by the Duquesne incline,” added Tameeka Smedley of New Kensington.

“Mt. Washington is one of the premier places of Pittsburgh, so it might be cool looking at it from down on the Point,” added Trevor Nordquist from Butler.

Of course, keeping the sign in the Strip is popular, too.

“Sixteenth Street Bridge,” suggested Robert Bonello of Troy Hill. “You can see it. It’s right there. It’s close to the Strip. It’s kind of like welcome to the Strip.”

And given that Wholey’s is all about fish — Jim Wholey says many want the smiling fish on the rivers just like a certain yellow duck.

Wholey: “A lot of people said the duck was so exciting why not connect the fish to the water.”

Delano: “How would you do that? loat the fish on a barge?”

Wholey: “Yeah, probably on a barge.”

That’s a possibility, and so is keeping the sign where it is, something the new developer might allow, says Wholey.

“When you come into Pittsburgh and crossing the bridge, and you see that, it just makes you feel — you feel the whole Pittsburgh feeling of Wholey’s,” said Chrissy Pazul of Cheswick.

No final vote yet.

Balloting for the location will continue through Jan. 31.


Wholey’s Smiling Fish’s Future In The Public’s Hands
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