Looking to add more books to your summer reading list? A new event, dubbed Off The Page, aims to bring bookworms and notable authors together for a day of panel discussions, wine tastings, an exclusive three-course dinner, and a sneak-peek at new titles this fall.
Hosted by Random House, which holds a similar event called “Open House” twice a year at its headquarters in Manhattan, Off the Page will allow readers to mingle with award-winning authors at the spacious Basilica in Hudson.
The publishing company’s Director of Communications (and participating panelist), Theresa Zoro, says Hudson’s beauty and book-loving community instantly made it the perfect location. “It’s completely culturally enriched,” she says. “It’s got a wonderful bookstore, a theater, art galleries, food, wine, crafts… everything we were looking for in a town.” The venue’s proximity to the Amtrak station doesn’t hurt, either, allowing readers from across the Hudson Valley, the Capital Region, and New York City to easily attend.
Guests can enjoy an exclusive, three-course dinner, discussions with bestselling authors, and a preview of Random House’s fall arrivals. Book cover photograph by Mikkel Vang
Guests are presented with a complimentary tote bag full of books and goodies. Throughout the day, they’ll enjoy discussions with a handful of established authors, editors, and TV stars, including food critic and bestselling author Ruth Reichl (Tender at the Bone); Gretchen Rubin (The Happiness Project); Woodstock native Clark Strand (Waking Up to the Dark); and proprietor of Hudson’s own Spotty Dog Books and Ale (and one of our featured Women in Business), Kelley Drahushuk. Guests can participate in customizable, interactive workshops about book club entertaining, flower arranging, storytelling, and the like; enjoy a wine tasting — hosted by New York Cork Report and Hudson Valley Wine Country — that features vinos from Hudson-Chatham and Tousey wineries; and even score a free digital copy of Darling magazine’s latest issue.
Food trucks will be on-site dishing out snacks and other treats, but for those looking for something a little more substantial, guests can purchase a lunch ($15 added to their ticket) or attend a cozy, al fresco dinner hosted by Random House and Darling magazine ($60 add-on).
All perks aside, the event is ultimately geared toward connecting the local reading community with its authors, offering a more interactive experience than with a run-of-the-mill book-signing at a library.
“We hope to have an engaged audience, [one that wants] to meet authors, to meet each other, and to build a community around books,” says Zoro. “It’s a full day of discovery and learning.”
She adds, “We felt [Hudson] has the right community [for that]; it’s a very artsy, sort of book-loving community.”
Random House’s Off The Page
When: Sat., July 11, 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
Where: Basilica Hudson, 110 South Front St., Hudson
Cost: $100 (add $60 for dinner and $15 for lunch); children under 12 free. Receive 20% off with promo code “HVMAG”
What’s included ($100):
Throughout the day:
Dinner hosted by Random House and Darling magazine:
Add on a ticket ($60) to the Random House x Darling Dinner to enjoy an alfresco dinner while connecting with fellow attendees and featured authors. Dinner includes locally sourced three-course meal, wine courtesy of Union Wine Co., craft cocktails courtesy of Art In The Age, a print edition of Darling magazine ($20 value), and an advanced reader’s edition of Ruth Reichl’s fall cookbook, My Kitchen Year: 136 Recipes That Changed My Life. Dinner menu includes: