Podcasts History

Upcoming Documentary, Podcast Tell Stories of Uniroyal Tire Plant

documentarians B.J. Hollars and Steve Dayton dive deeper into Uniroyal stories in limited podcast series

Sawyer Hoff |

A ROYAL PODCAST. Locals BJ Hollar and Steve Dayton
A ROYAL PODCAST. Locals B.J. Hollars (right) and Steve Dayton are releasing a limited podcast series, a companion to their upcoming documentary When Rubber Hit the Road. (Submitted photos)

Local documentarians B.J. Hollars and Steve Dayton have announced the premiere of their debut documentary, When Rubber Hit the Road, which will be held at the Pablo Center on Friday, May 3. The film details the story of the Uniroyal tire plant in Eau Claire and its closure in 1991. As Hollars puts it, the story is less about tires and more about the community banding together after being hit by hard times.

To celebrate the upcoming film, Hollars and Dayton are releasing a limited podcast series with long-form interviews every Thursday for the next six weeks. The first episode was released on Feb. 8 and featured Eric Lindquist, a longtime reporter for The Leader-Telegram, who covered the plant closing and continued to write follow-up pieces in the years after.

Episodes to come will feature former tire plant employees Dennis Miller, Darrel Wekkin, Arlene McAdam, and Cleo Janish. One episode will also offer in-depth interviews with Hollars and Dayton themselves.

Hollars says the idea of creating a podcast leading up to the film’s premiere came from the fact that documentaries require much paring down, so many of the full interviews were cut from the final film. This podcast will allow listeners to hear more and gives each participant a chance to tell their full story.

The podcast episodes are being released on Spotify and on the website of Fireside Production, a production company started by Hollars and Dayton.

You can learn more about When Rubber Hit the Road at firesideproductionsllc.com and purchase tickets for the premiere at pablocenter.org.