Hi-Neighbor! The Story of the Narragansett Brewing Company
You know the brand, now know the backstory.
Wrap up your summer with a ‘Gansett and join Rhode Island PBS on August 25 at 6 p.m. at the Narragansett Brewery for a screening of HI-NEIGHBOR! THE STORY OF THE NARRAGANSETT BREWING COMPANY.
After the screening, stay for an interactive discussion moderated by the film’s narrator and 94 HJY radio personality Doug Palmieri and featuring the film’s producer John H. Smith, Jim Crooks, vice president of sales and marketing at Narragansett Brewing Co., Greg Theberge, Narragansett Brewing Co. historian, and Lee Lord, head brewer at Narragansett Brewing Co.
About the Program
Founded by German immigrants in 1890, the Narragansett Brewing Company grew from a humble craft brewer to New England’s largest and most advanced brewery, commanding 65% of Rhode Island’s market and 25% of the New England market share by 1965. Despite strong sales and legendary marketing, however, it fell victim to modernization and by 1983, closed its doors for good while its product was produced out-of-state.
By the early 2000s, in an amazing turn of events, the brand was resurrected at the start of the craft beer renaissance and returned home to Rhode Island. Hi-Neighbor! is a story of industry, perseverance, failure, and triumph. It is a story of second chances borne of indomitable hope, vision, and entrepreneurial spirit.
The original brewery complex was demolished in 1998; now at the site is the headquarters of the Cranston Police and Municipal Court, on the corner of Cranston and Garfield Streets. John H. Smith, the film’s producer, noted, “The buildings are gone. The landscape has changed. Many Rhode Islanders may not remember where the brewery was originally located, but they know the slogan. Our film fills in the backstory of this iconic Rhode Island brand.”