Hudson Bonds Provide Pandemic Relief to the City's Small Business Community | Sponsored | Hudson | Hudson Valley | Chronogram Magazine
Last Updated: 09/01/2020 4:00 pm
comment
IMAGES COURTESY OF THE HUDSON BUSINESS COALITION
  • Images courtesy of the Hudson Business Coalition

As the coronavirus pandemic wracked the region’s economy this spring, the idea for a town-wide bond program quickly came to Hudson business owners Monica Byrne and Peg Patterson. Both Byrne, who owns Home/Made Hudson and Patterson, who owns Dish Hudson, were inspired by hand-drawn bonds a restaurant in Red Hook, Brooklyn sold as a way to community-source relief after Hurricane Sandy.

Half the value of the bond immediately went to the restaurant and the other half could be used for food and drink after it reopened. “We all bought them and very few of us redeemed them. We were just proud we could show our support,” says Byrne.

As board members of the Hudson Business Coalition, a nonprofit dedicated to stimulating the city's business district, Byrne and Patterson took the memory and ran with it, spearheading the launch of the Hudson Bonds program in May. “As a community we thought ‘Well what can we do?’” says Patterson. “There are people that can’t pay their rent. We don’t want Hudson to become a ghost town again.”

IMAGES COURTESY OF THE HUDSON BUSINESS COALITION
  • Images courtesy of the Hudson Business Coalition

The Hudson Bonds program is designed to lift up Hudson’s entire business community, which is still struggling despite increased summer sales for some. The program was launched with support of the Columbia Economic Development Corp. (CEDC), which acts as a fiscal sponsor for the program, allowing a portion of every bond purchase to be tax-deductible.

The purchase of a $50 Hudson Bond gives you $25 to spend at any participating business and allocates $25 to a grant fund where those same businesses can get direct relief. “We’re all in the same boat even though our businesses and our business models may be very different,” says David Chicane, whose restaurant Hudson Food Studio is participating in the program.

In the first few months, the program has been successful in calling the city's residents to action. “My husband and I bought the bonds because we really wanted to do everything we could to support the Hudson business owners,” says resident Geri Schachner.

The visually striking bonds, also designed by Patterson, feature iconography sure to thrill any Hudson history aficionado. A whale, a mermaid, and Henry Hudson’s ship, the Half Moon, all pay homage to the Hudson's nautical and whaling-industry past. Hudson Bonds can be purchased through the website. The paper bonds arrive by mail and are valid through July 2021 for in-person use at any open participating business or can be held onto for the future.

In addition to their value as keepsakes, the bonds’ bold colors and prominent messaging provide a clear message of the community's support. “It made me even more touched by the person paying because I realized that they knew when they were buying the bond how it worked,” says Amanda Bruns, owner of participating business Flowerkraut. “And I also felt a little thrilled that they came to my store to use it.”

To help promote the program to a wider audience, the Hudson Business Coalition recently secured a grant from the City of Hudson's Tourism Board, which has been working extensively to support creative events and initiatives throughout the city during the pandemic.

For more information on the program and a full list of participating businesses, visit hudsonbond.org.

This content is made possible by our sponsor. It does not necessarily reflect the attitude, views, or opinions of the Chronogram editorial staff.

Latest in HV Towns

  • A Metaphysical Mercantile for Personal Liberation
  • A Metaphysical Mercantile for Personal Liberation

    How Sassafras Mercantile in Kingston cultivates space for a diverse community of makers, growers, customers, and more
    • Sep 19, 2020
  • Cap Off Your Weekend with a Bistro Brunch at Willow by Charlie Palmer
  • Cap Off Your Weekend with a Bistro Brunch at Willow by Charlie Palmer

    The updated French classics at Mirbeau Inn & Spa Rhinebeck's signature restaurant are sure to hit the spot
    • Sep 17, 2020
  • Culture Cream: The Probiotic Ice Cream Shack in Hudson
  • Culture Cream: The Probiotic Ice Cream Shack in Hudson

    Performance artist. Fermenter. World traveller. Spice collector. Ice cream maker. These seemingly disparate vocations fold together deliciously in the work and life of Katiushka Melo, the dynamic force behind probiotic ice cream project Culture Cream. Call it small town kismet or keeping an open mind, but one day, cruising up Warren Street, Melo eyed the shabby storage shack behind Backbar and new it could be her location. A whirlwind vision and a wild paint job later, she opened up shop in July, amidst a social distancing-inspired gravel patio, lush with plants and picnic tables. "It has this tropical, beachy vibe," Melo says, which her neon shack and exotic ice creams only elevate.
    • Sep 11, 2020