- CHARITY BENEFIT
“My View” Written by: Stephen Sorokoff
The people who live in the countries bordering the Baltic Sea have always impressed me with their homogeneous characteristics of beauty, creativity, attention to detail, and ability to produce quality products. I will reveal the main reason for my awareness later on in this article. I guess I was not the only one mindful of this geographical fact. I once met Reuben Mathis the founder and creator of Haagen-Daz ice cream. Remember that map of Norway on the top of the quart? He revealed that Haagen-Daz was a made up name. Mr. Mathis explained that he just wanted his ice cream to be identified with quality.
Recently, I had the pleasure of being in a quality establishment in Hudson, New York. Helsinki Hudson! In this case, it’s the real deal. Deborah McDowell, founder of Great Barrington’s Club Helsinki in 1995, has her roots in that part of the world. Her grandfather operated the Helsinki Hotel in Finland and she comes from a family of artists. She was joined by Marc Shafler whose family owned Camp Natchez on the edge of the Broscht Belt in 1997 and they went on to create one of the premier clubs in the Berkshires, known for presenting some of the finest musicians, activist, and poets.
Recently they made the move to Hudson N.Y. with a spectacular renovation of an industrial building complex. Together with California producer Cameron Melville, it’s now renamed Helsinki Hudson. A new addition which will be of interest to all Berkshire musical theater lovers is the Sunday performances of Helsinki on Broadway. It’s a new series in association with Lee Tannen’s Showstoppers. Up from Broadway came Jason Graae and Faith Prince for the launch of Helsinki on Broadway. It was a spectacular evening of music and comedy. This is not a food review but I must say that it was a welcome change to dine in a great restaurant, which is also what Helsinki Hudson is about.
Why am I partial to the Baltics, and why do I know about the beauty, quality and creativity that comes from that part of the world? I married a girl from there!
Brent Barrett is next up on September 9th. (Photos: Stephen Sorokoff)