By JOSH AULT
6 News Reporter
PIGEON FORGE (WATE) - Claire Donahue fever is spreading across East Tennessee.
Donahue, a Lenoir City native, is part of the U.S. Olympic swim team. She will be swimming the 100 meter butterfly on Saturday in London.
Before Donahue because an Olympian, she got her start as a part-time greeter at Huck Finn's Catfish in Pigeon Forge.
"I helped train her as a greeter," manager Chrystal England said. "She was very timid, very sweet, and eager to learn."
Her father, Chris, has been the general manager at Huck Finn's Catfish for the past 16 years. He left Thursday for London to watch his daughter swim.
"We are pretty much obsessed with it," Huck Finn's Catfish owner Karen Moore said. "We decorated inside and out. We made t-shirts that we'll wear tomorrow. We made these buttons."
Along with all the decorations, a new dish has been created at the restaurant in Claire's honor. It is called the Claire Donahue Special: Fish and Chips.
"It's deep fried white fish," Moore said. "The chips are french fries."
"It's actually been one of our biggest sellers this week," England said.
The new dish will be a permanent fixture at the restaurant.
"It was really good," Matthew Wright, a South Carolina visitor who ordered the Claire Donahue Special, said. "It was nice and tender, real thick cut like fish and chips are traditionally."
Everyone at Huck Finn's Catfish is planning to watch Donahue swim on Saturday. They hope she knows how excited they are for her.
"Claire we are so, so proud of you," Moore said. "You go swim fast and do your best."
"Claire good luck," Wright said. "Do your best and bring home the gold."
Anyone wanting to watch Claire swim Saturday at 2:30 p.m. is welcome to come to Huck Finn's Catfish. They are located at 3330 Parkway, between lights six and seven.