Local Store Marketing Tours: Portland’s McMenamins

 In Be Locally Relevant, Be The Leader, Create Community, Drive Traffic, LSMTours

Our latest LSMTours visit is Portland, Oregon. LSMTours provide you with local marketing ideas and inspiration based on what we’ve seen as we’re out traveling local markets!

When we think of a city of local brands and local marketing, Portland is a stellar example. And one of the starring local businesses? McMenamins.

McMenamins started as one pub back in 1974 by brothers Mike and Brian McMenamin. Today, McMenamins is a Northwest chain of 50+ brewpubs, microbreweries, music venues, historic hotels, and theater pubs, mostly in the Portland metropolitan area. The brothers are now considered pioneers of the Northwest microbrew and historic hotels industries.

Locals know “McMenamins” as great places to enjoy with family and friends in a casual, relaxed atmosphere. They are the fourth-largest producer of microbrewed beer, only sold in their pubs, restaurants, hotels and movie theaters. And one of their signatures is their incorporation of their love for historic buildings and artwork in many of their establishments. Several of the McMenamins’ businesses are long-storied structures honored by their inclusion on the National Historic Register.

Kennedy School Pub

We spent hours during our LSMTour at their very cool and very Portland Kennedy School. Since its 1915 opening, this historic elementary school has been a beloved fixture of its Northeast Portland neighborhood. McMenamins renovated the once-abandoned scholastic gem and turned it into Portland’s most unique hotel. It has 57 guestrooms with private baths and telephones (some fashioned from former classrooms), a restaurant, multiple small bars, a movie theater, soaking pool, gift shop and a brewery where they make all their microbrewed beer. As their motto says, “Come have fun in school…for once…”

Kennedy School directional sign

It’s a gem and perfect example of local. As their website says “you’ll never want to leave. Here you can have a pint in a classroom, enjoy an aged whiskey and a cigar in detention, enjoy a movie in the old auditorium…. The possibilities here are endless. (Just don’t run in the hallways, please. You might spill your beer.)”

If you want local and funky, any McMenamins is a great choice. They are a beloved local brand…just look at their 93,631 “likes” on Facebook (McMenamins Pubs, Breweries & Historic Hotels).

Kennedy School Boiler Room Pub

Members can check out the full LSMTour: Portland of local wine, coffee, beer, food trucks, ice cream and hip hotels!

Everyone can get more LSMTour highlights in these articles.

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