So what is this website and how did it come into being? Well. Funny story. A few years ago while driving through downtown Mystic I sighed: “I miss Bee Bee’s.” It wasn’t a new thought to me – or really anyone I knew who grew up and still lived in Mystic, but it was followed by a new question: “And what ever happened to it?” An internet search at home yielded far less info than I would have thought existed. For a restaurant that still looms large in the collective heart and mind of Norwich-Waterford-East Lyme-Groton-Mystic-and-Westerly, Bee Bee Dairy left behind a very modest digital foot print.
What I pieced together was that Bee Bee’s was sold to Newport Creamery in 1999. From there the trail went cold. So I called Newport Creamery. Corporate headquarters – not in Newport incidentally. They said that Newport Creamery went bankrupt in 2001 and that the current owners had purchased it in bankruptcy court. They didn’t know what happened to Bee Bee Dairy after that. Hmm.
Next I typed in beebeedairy.com which led me to a domain hosting site where, to my surprise, it was available for $9.95 per year. That seemed fair so I bought it. That might have been the end of it but some time later I learned that the trademarks for Bee Bee Dairy and the cartoon Bee logo had expired. Actually, on the website that handles these things, it used the word “dead.” I thought if I’m ever going to use beebeedairy.com for anything it sure would be nice to have access to the logo. So I registered the trademarks and can now use the logo.
There it is. That’s how you and I have found ourselves involved in this blog post. Where we go from here is a mystery. Speaking of mysteries I did eventually figure out more of the nuts-and-bolts about what happened to Bee Bee’s after Newport Creamery fell apart. You can read about it in the “History” section of this website – turns out there was a comeback. But as for the future, this is what I’m hoping:
1) I hope people visit this website and share their favorite memories of Bee Bee Dairy. I hope we fill this blog up to the brim with hilarious/meaningful/pointless anecdotes – a living archive, a digital tribute to Bee Bees. Oh and pictures, if you have pictures send them.
2) I hope we sell some t-shirts and mugs and whatnot. That silly bee drinking a milkshake makes people smile. It connects people to a special part of their past and to each other. Lord knows if ever there was a time where we needed something to connect us to each other this is it. Also, for what it’s worth, we will be donating 10% of the profits to Beautiful Day of RI – an organization that prepares newly arrived international refugees for the workplace.
3) Lastly, I hope that maybe reviving the brand will attract someone who wants to re-open a Bee Bee Dairy restaurant. I DO NOT want to open a restaurant. But I think it would be good if someone else did. I would eat there. I still miss it.