Helsinki Club in Hudson opened its doors just a few years ago. From its birth as the Helsinki Tea Room in 1995 to its closing in 2009, Club Helsinki in Great Barrington, Mass. had become one of the top music venues in the Northeast, showcasing acts like Mose Allison, Pete Seeger, Ralph Stanley, Guy Clark, Michelle Shocked, Olu Dara, the Blind Boys of Alabama, Shawn Colvin and Steve Earle. Helsinki is now part of the wonderful movement of talented people and musicians. For more information see: http://helsinkihudson.com/index.html
The Hudson Opera House (www.hudsonoperahouse.org) where you just never know what will going on presents extensive, multi-cultural programming. The building has been amazingly restored (with more restorations forthcoming). The Hudson Opera House provides free or low-cost cultural offerings including workshops, classes, concerts, readings, lectures, exhibitions, theatre and dance presentations, after-school programs.
The Basilica seems as good a snapshot as any. Built in 1884 as a foundry and forge for manufacturing steel railway wheels, it finally shut down as a glue factory using rabbit hide in the ’90s. Almost a decade ago, its 18,000 square feet were reimagined as a local gathering and performance space for ska concerts, avant-garde movies, art exhibits, filming and recording.
Like almost everything in the Hudson Valley, it’s still a work in progress. But its owners, Melissa Auf der Maur, a seriously glamorous Montreal native who has played bass for bands like Smashing Pumpkins and Hole, and Tony Stone, a filmmaker, come from central casting as exemplars of the new, hip Hudson Valley.
The Basilica is the kind of space and scene that the artist and musician Patti Smith (no stranger to Hudson) had in mind a few months ago when she advised young artists that “New York has closed itself off to the young and the struggling” and that they should find their futures someplace else, like Poughkeepsie.
“A bunch of my friends from Montreal came to visit and they said, ‘You told us you moved to a small town, but you didn’t tell us you moved to a magic David Lynch town. What is this place?’ ” Ms. Auf der Maur said.
Hudson, she added, has the feel of SoHo decades ago. “There’s the sense that it’s manageable, it’s beautiful, it has infrastructure that can inspire you and facilitate your needs and get you to feel like you’re part of a moment of discovery.”
There are state parks that provide good hiking all around. In Greenport, which surrounds Hudson like a horseshoe, is the Greenport Conservation Area, about two miles outside the city, where past the split-rail fence on a 714-acre riverside parcel, trails unfold to the Hudson River.
The river is popular with kayakers, who typically put in at North Bay, where the current is usually less fierce than elsewhere. ~Some are excerpts from the NYtimes~
Find out more about what is going on in town and where to go to dine and play at these links…
Click to explore…..www.gotohudson.net/
An inside guide to Hudson…. ilovehudson.us/