Feb 2011

Greenfield Recorder On The History Of Hi Neighbor Girls!

Greenfield woman drove the hills promoting Narragansett beer

GREENFIELD — In 1963, the year after Penny Martineau was one of Narragansett Beer’s Miss Hi Neighbor for the western Massachusetts region, a Greenfield woman won the same honor.

Like Martineau, Betty Vickowski of Greenfield tried out for the job at an audition at WHAI’s studios on Main Street.

‘We had to record a commercial for Narragansett Beer,’ she said. ‘At the time, they claimed the selection was made on how good the recording sounded.’

Vickowski, now 73, was 27 at the time and was a stay-at-home mother. Her husband, who has since passed away, encouraged her to try out. Vickowski said she was drawn to the tryout because it was open to both married and single women.

Like Martineau, Vickowski traveled around the Pioneer Valley to bars, restaurants and stores that sold Narragansett to promote the beer as well as various events, like parades, golf tournaments, the Wilbraham Peach Festival and a boat race out of the marina in Hadley.

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