Hog 'Heaven': Kingsport faith-based service hopes to transform notorious saloon

(WCYB Archive)

Organizers of a Kingsport faith-based organization have plans for the condemned Hog Wild Saloon- the notorious nightspot that was shuttered following a murder earlier this year.

Engage Tri-Cities founder Jonathan Anderson confirmed to WCYB on Wednesday that the building's owner Paul Bellamy has donated the structure to their organization and they plan to transform it into a job resource center, complementing their current work with the homeless and low income residents in the city.

Before the plan goes into motion, a judge must hear about that arrangement due to the saloon current status. That hearing is scheduled for Nov. 16, according to Anderson. He also noted that razing the building is an option depending on repair and renovation costs and replacing it with a new facility.

Numerous code violations led to the Hog Wild's permanent closure. Those infractions were found in inspections conducted in the weeks following a shooting that left one man dead.

Brett Rogers, 20, died from a gunshot wound received inside the saloon in March. The suspect, William Newkirk, 17, pleaded not guilty earlier this month and will be tried as an adult.

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