Maybe you didn’t know there was another municipality in Macon. We’re not talking about Lafayette, Red Boiling, Westmoreland, or even some of the smaller communities like Webbtown or Willette or Rocky Mound.
We’re talking about Fake Town.
Fake Town, which is located just off the Highway 141, at 1438 Green Grove Road, has one mayor and no residents. The town could be considered a bit of a sham, with no bylaws, no tax code, and no economy to speak of. Even so, it gets between five and twenty-five carloads of visitors every weekend.
Fake Town is one of the strangest attractions that our county has to offer. So when we sat down to talk to the man who built it—Wayne Knight, age 52—we knew to expect someone with an unusual sense of humor.
The town is just a façade. Fourteen structures are erected in a line, made to look like your regular old fashioned township. There are buildings made to look like a local general store, a local church, and a local mill. Several dummies sit around on porch swings, while another leans under the hood of a car that sits out front.
The whole thing is built up against the edge of an embankment—an embankment that Knight says was the reason he started the whole project.
“Started it on Labor Day, 2010,” said Knight, who owns local business Knights Wrecker Service, and has lived on Green Grove Road for all of his 52 years. “I built the first part, with the log front , where he’s sitting—” he points to one of the dummies, who is sitting comfortably on a covered porch in the middle of the town.
“I call it fake town,” said Knight, reasonably. “That’s what it is; it’s fake! I just covered this bank, where it was rough from when I cut the driveway way out here. It just looked so bad.
“I do construction work too, so I had a lot of material piled up from when I had some extra from a job. I’d just bring a little bit of lumber or siding or roofing, and do a little bit each time. Had two grandboys who enjoyed it, liked working, and they helped me a lot.”
These two grandsons are named Eric and Thomas Gunner. His other grandchildren also played a role in the development of Fake Town. His four-year-old grandson, for instance, inspired the oversized Spongebob Squarepants that stands near the highway.
“He likes Spongebob,” said Knight, “so we fixed a Spongebob. The other two like Tow Mater [from the movie Cars], so we fixed up a Tow Mater. We drove that in the parade this year!”
Now, said Knight, Fake Town gets between five and twenty-five carloads of visitors every weekend. TV show Country Crossroads even called to do a story once, according to Knight, but they never did come out.
“We’ve enjoyed it; bunch of people come and brings their kids and takes pictures and stuff. ‘Specially Tow Mater. They love ol’ Mater… Sometimes I catch ‘em and come up and talk to them. Sometimes I just set and watch them just see it and enjoy it. ‘Specially when they got their kids with them; I enjoy the kids.”
He spent over three years adding to the buildings here, little by little, but Knight said he’s about done.
“Last thing we done was when I put this fence up, about six months ago,” he said. “I’ve probably gone as far as I’m going. I’m about out of driveway space. I was wanting to put an old-timey sawmill—I got the blades and everything for it. So if I do anything else, I will do that. But it’s very doubtful. I’ve not got enough room… I guess I’m finished for a while.”
If you’d like to go see it for yourself—and we know you do—just be warned that if you’re headed south on 141 from Hwy 52, you may just miss it. It’s on the right, but it faces the other way.
If you’re headed north towards Hwy 52, though… well, let’s just say it would be hard to miss.