A View from Hudson

Last weekend, I traveled to the Hudson River Valley to begin production on a short film documentary. The view of the Hudson River from the train never fails to thrill and inspire me. This waterway and region holds such a mythic space in American arts and letters. In a small way, this film project initiated me into this rich heritage.

Riding Amtrak alongside the Hudson River and looking toward the Catskill Mountains. (Photograph by author)

This work trip allowed me spend a day exploring Hudson, New York. Like many towns and cities throughout New York State, Hudson has struggled to reshape itself in a post-industrial America. In recent years, artists, entrepreneurs, and creatives have gravitated to Hudson and injected new energy and life into Warren Street, the city’s main commercial corridor. Antique shops, restaurants, cafes, and both quirky and practical small businesses fill most of the storefronts.

The joyful clutter of an analog life–John Doe Records, Hudson, NY. (Photograph by author)

The city’s architecture and buildings hint at the ebbs and flows of Hudson’s history.

Looking down Cherry Alley, Hudson, NY. (Photograph by author)

Hudson’s brick buildings, alleyways, and small-scale urbanism resembles those of many Upstate New York localities.

Doorway on Warren Street, Hudson, NY. (Photograph by author)

The city overlooks the Hudson River, and this stands as an obvious draw for visitors and residents. As sunset neared, couples and families gathered at the Promenade Hill Park.

Sunset on the Catskill Mountains and Hudson River. (Photograph by author)

My short stay in Hudson left me wanting to learn more about its history and current cultural scene. (I’m open to suggestions!) When the pandemic ultimately passes, I definitely plan to visit Olana, the home of landscape painter Frederic Edwin Church. My entire trip to the Hudson River Valley reminded me how much awaits to be experienced only a short train ride away.

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