Trixie Starr, BINGO-zooming!
Exactly one year ago Trixie’s List launched its first issue! I was there from the beginning. I saw the seed being planted. “They ask me the same questions all the time…” Trixie would lament. Often after he sold cookies at the farmers’ market or whenever he met a new AirBnb guest. “Where do I park? Where should I eat? Are there any events this weekend? Blah blah blah…” he continues. Then one day in 2019 he finally said to me, “[o]ne day I’m going to start a blog about Hudson. Don’t tell anyone.”
It may have started earlier. In 2018, Trixie was the chair of the City of Hudson’s Tourism Board. The board spent a year “workshopping and documenting the needs of Hudson,” he told me. But he felt something was missing. “This isn’t something that can be easily done by committee,” he says. “There needs to be a focus, there needs to be a point of view. It needs to be updated regularly and turn things around quickly- and that’s not easy in a government structure.” Thus he started thinking about a blog…kinda. Trixie was super busy…
Suddenly in early 2020 the COVID-19 pandemic reared its ugly head and the state of New York was shut down. So of course this is the moment to start a hyperlocal blog about events?! According to Trixie, “why not? Idle hands are the devil’s playground. Besides, everything was shut down and I needed a Covid project. Some people went nuts gardening, others baked bread, I started a blog.” And so he did. Trixie’s List launched one year ago with an Events Calendar, Business Listings section and Newsletter and is referred to as “the arts and leisure section” of Hudson.
As it turns out, it was the best time to start a blog because the Hudson area was changing and it was changing fast. New York City, the epicenter to an obscene number of corporations has a plethora of jobs that can be done remotely and when the city was shut down and people were forced to work from home- they changed homes! According to the USPS, about 30 million Americans changed their home address in 2020 and the number one spot that absorbed the most of those in New York was Hudson. City folks were desperate to leave the city and gobbling up real estate in the Hudson area driving up prices 20-30%! A number of those folks bought small businesses in the Hudson Valley.
The new people wanted to know, What’s open? What’s there to do? Do I need to wear a mask? And Hudson area residents also wanted to know, What’s open? What’s there to do? Do I need to wear a mask? Trixie’s List was on the beat! During the lockdown and throughout the phases of reopening, new and old residents alike could keep up with which restaurants were offering take out, how to order, what specials were offered. It also informed people of local food drives, how to donate to support local businesses, where to find masks. The most read articles were the ones that reported on new businesses on Warren Street and there were many such as Sonder and La Mision and Window on Hudson in July, Juice Branch in August, Kitty’s Market and Susan Eley Fine Art in September.
Trixie emphatically says to me. “There’s TONS of material! New businesses open, new events, it’s constant. What are people supposed to do? Go to the Facebook page of every business each week? Yeah, no.” What Trixie’s List is offering is more than a mere business directory; it promotes the experience of Hudson. Trixie’s List offers eye witness accounts of various experiences in and around the Hudson area. “People want to know if the Hi-Way Drive-In theater in Coxsackie across the river was open, and what was it like to go? They’re like ‘I have a bike, where can I go?’ uh hello how about a bike ride and a burrito? ”
Now what? What’s next for Trixie’s List? Now it’s going old school paper. This spring Trixie’s List is launching its first walking map. Last week’s issue offered ad space on the walking map and everything sold out in less than a week! I asked Trixie, why a walking map? “I worked on walking maps about ten years ago for Pride…I know they work. People want them. We are printing 5,000 copies for Spring/Summer 2021. I wanted maps that were fun, colorful and reasonably priced for local businesses.”
Any plans to expand? Cover events outside of Hudson? “Yes!” exclaims Trixie. “There’s the County Fair in the fall, Spiegeltent next summer, antique stores in Ravena! We live in a wonderful, beautiful part of the country, with so many options.”