Wes T. Gator.

Gator Under Glass

Field review by the editors.

Marion, South Carolina

"Wes T. Gator" was 14 feet long and weighed 725 pounds when he was killed in Florida's Lake Hatchineha. His body was shellacked and stuffed, and became the mascot of a barbecue restaurant run by a resort chain in Orlando, where a machine would squish his cartoon likeness onto pennies for a dollar.

The gator eventually fell from favor and was sent out-of-state to the resort's Myrtle Beach property in South Carolina. Apparently Wes was not welcome there, either, and he now sits several miles inland, at one of Myrtle Beach's many access road Visitor Centers.

Although shunned by his corporate masters, Wes still has top-of-the-food-chain tourist appeal; we hit the brakes and pulled into the Center parking lot when we saw the neon-lettered, "See 14 Foot Alligator," sign.

Gator Under Glass

Myrtle Beach Visitors Center

1548 US-501, Marion, SC
Myrtle Beach Visitors Center. On the west side of US Hwy 501, 3.5 miles south of downtown Marion.
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Nearby Offbeat Places

Atom Bomb Dropped HereAtom Bomb Dropped Here, Mars Bluff, SC - 17 mi.
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Cotton Press: Earth's Oldest?Cotton Press: Earth's Oldest?, Latta, SC - 17 mi.
In the region:
Huey Cooper and His Lucky Rabbit's Foot, Lake City, SC - 28 mi.

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July 21, 2018

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