Smith helps bring Niue to Nu-Way


Benjamin Jorgensen, Gazebo Staff Writer

Alex Smith, a junior at Stratford Academy, recently was a part of the new “Niue Day,” at Nu-Way Weiners.  

Alex and his father, Macon attorney Chris Smith, who serves as honorary consul of Denmark, got it all started when Alex became interested in countries with premieres, similar to prime ministers.

During his search, he came across the small island of Niue, about 300 miles off the coast of New Zealand.

Toke Talagi is the premiere of the small island in the South Pacific. Alex was immediately intrigued by this small island.

“There are about as many people at Stratford as there are on the island,” said Alex.

Alex and his father began researching this island.  While watching a tourism video  explaining the island’s beauty, they realized the woman pronounced the island’s name Nu-Way, the same as Macon’s famous hot dog establishment.

“We originally thought it’s name was pronounced ‘Nu’ due to the spelling,” said Alex.  “My father and I just looked at each other, and started laughing hysterically when we heard how the name is pronounced.”

Alex’s father was able to purchase several Niue flags on Amazon, and contacted the owners of Nu-Way to set up a special day for this small and unrecognized country.

 Alex later asked Stratford journalism teacher Ed Grisamore to sign a copy of his Grisamore’s book, “There Is More Than One Way to Spell Wiener,” the story of Nu-Way and its famously misspelled “Weiner” sign. 

In  a display of civic diplomacy, Alex mailed the signed book, along with a formal letter to the premier and citizens of Niue.

The “Niue Island Day” at the Nu-Way in Mercer Village on Saturday, Jan. 7, was attended by about 35 people, including Macon Mayor Robert Reichert and Ian Latham, an ambassador to New Zealand from the embassy in Atlanta.

Alex has continued to receive notes and letters from the residents on the island of Niue, including a Japanese restaurant owner, who is the owner what is considered one of the best Sushi restaurants in the world.