Gina Hyams Author

Category Archives: Berkshires

Podcasting 101 & 102 Workshops with Acclaimed NPR Producer Susan Davis in the Berkshires July 9 – 10

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To sign up for Podcasting 101 and/or Podcasting 102, please click here and for more info, email Gina at ginahyams@gmail.com.

Podcasting 101 with NPR Producer Susan Davis
Saturday, July 9 from 10am to 4:00pm
Lichtenstein Center for the Arts (28 Renne Avenue in Pittsfield, MA)
$150 early bird discount through May 22
$175 after May 23
OR $350 for both Podcasting 101 and 102 ($50 savings!)
Tuition includes morning coffee/tea and a scrumptious lunch

In Podcasting 101, Susan Davis will introduce participants to the building blocks of a great podcast, including true listening, the art of hosting, perfecting a sound, achieving a tone, and designing an efficient production structure and schedule. She will also address tech issues (all you need to get started is an iPhone and a computer) and share tips on how to build an audience through promotion and distribution. The workshop is appropriate for both aspiring podcasters and podcast-loving audiophiles.

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Podcasting 102 with NPR Producer Susan Davis
*** Enrollment is limited to 15 participants***

Sunday, July 10 from 10:00am to 4:00pm
Lichtenstein Center for the Arts (28 Renne Avenue in Pittsfield, MA)
Pre-requisite: Podcasting 101 with NPR Producer Susan Davis and/or you are a current podcaster.
$200 early bird discount through May 22
$225 after May 23
Tuition includes morning coffee/tea and a scrumptious lunch

In Podcasting 102, participants will workshop their individual show’s description and mission (a.k.a. the all important “elevator pitch”). Susan will help each student find their show’s best structure (“bento box” or “mother-in-law’s window boxes/beer flight”) and plan a detailed, sustainable production schedule. She will also answer tech questions, review publishing options, and brainstorm marketing and distribution techniques.

You will leave this workshop able to start work on your podcast the very next day!

About the Instructor
Susan Davis is a storyteller—by nature, by craft, by art, and by profession. For two decades, she has ferreted out the most memorable, most profound, most complex, and most interesting characters and brought their tales to the listeners of Public Radio. She has worked as a producer for Marketplace, Soundprint, All Things Considered, and Talk of the Nation at NPR, as well as for The State of Things on North Carolina Public Radio/WUNC. Her recent podcast clients include NPR’s Alt Latino, The Good Fight with Ben Wikler (#1 on iTunes), Press Record (from the Southern Oral History Project at UNC Chapel Hill), The Monti Radio Hour, and Classical Classroom. She has taught podcasting/audio production at a wide range of venues, ranging from Duke University to the Public Radio Program Directors Conference to the Cultural Affairs Department of the United States Department of State.

Cancellation Policy
If a workshop must be canceled due to low enrollment or unforeseen circumstances, Muddy Puppy Media will refund all tuition in full. If a student chooses to cancel—for any reason—at least four weeks prior to the first day of the workshop, Muddy Puppy Media will refund the tuition minus a US$30 administration fee. If a student cancels between six and 28 days prior to the start of the workshop, they will receive a 50% refund. There are no refunds for cancelations made five or less days before the workshop.

Podcasting Workshops with NPR Producer Susan Davis in Pittsfield and Hudson

Susan Davis by Michael Czeiszperger

Muddy Puppy Media presents Podcasting 101 workshops with acclaimed NPR producer Susan Davis from 10:00am to 4:00pm on Saturday, April 30 at the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts (28 Renne Avenue in Pittsfield, MA) and on Sunday, May 1 at Time & Space Limited (434 Columbia Street in Hudson, NY). The workshop will be of interest to both aspiring podcasters and podcast-loving audiophiles.

Susan Davis is a storyteller—by nature, by craft, by art, and by profession. For two decades, she has ferreted out the most memorable, most profound, most complex, and most interesting characters and brought their tales to the listeners of Public Radio. She has worked as a producer for Marketplace, Soundprint, All Things Considered, and Talk of the Nation at NPR, as well as for The State of Things on North Carolina Public Radio/WUNC. Her recent podcast clients include NPR’s Alt Latino, The Good Fight with Ben Wikler (#1 on iTunes), Press Record (from the Southern Oral History Project at UNC Chapel Hill), The Monti Radio Hour, and Classical Classroom. She has taught podcasting/audio production at a wide range of venues, ranging from Duke University to the Public Radio Program Directors Conference to the Cultural Affairs Department of the United States Department of State.

In Podcasting 101, Davis will introduce participants to the building blocks of a great podcast, including true listening, the art of hosting, perfecting a sound, achieving a tone, and designing an efficient production structure and schedule She will also address tech issues (all you need to get started is an iPhone and a computer) and share tips on how to build an audience through promotion and distribution.

Tuition is $150 early bird special through March 31 /$175 after April 1. Limited financial aid is available. To reserve your spot, please email Gina (noting your interest in the Pittsfield or Hudson workshop) at ginahyams@gmail.com.

Please note: Susan will also teach a Podcast Storytelling 101 Intensive July 31 – August 5 in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. For details, please click here.

Interview with Kaarin “Pook” Lemstrom-Sheedy of pookstyle gift shop in Chatham, New York

p o o k s t y l e at 2 Park Row in  Chatham, New York, is one of the most charming gift shops around. It’s owned by Kaarin “Pook” Lemstrom-Sheedy, a veteran bookstore and museum shop retailer, who shares space with Park Row Gallery & Framing. She says she’s having the time of her life with the shop and her joy shines through in the gifts she stocks. 

Kaarin “Pook” Lemstrom-Sheedy

Prior to launching p o o k s t y l e in 2010,  Kaarin managed the iconic Scribner Bookstore and Barnes & Noble 128 Fifth Avenue Sales Annex in Manhattan, and she designed and ran museum gift shops at the Whitney Museum of American Art, MASS MoCA, the Mount, and Hancock Shaker Village.

Gina: What defines p o o k s t y l e?

Kaarin: Clean, modern designs from the U.S. and around the world, with a pinch of humor and a dash of whimsy thrown in for good measure. “Pook” is the name my father gave me as a baby, and prior to opening p o o k s t y l e, the only people who called me by that name were my family and very oldest and closest friends, so I had to think carefully about releasing it into the world. Happily, it has been a very pleasant and good experience. I’ve met many other pooks and pookies—both two and four legged! Customers usually ask if they can call me pook once they know what it means, and I always say yes!

My shop has been described (by Rural Intelligence) as a “museum store without a museum” and I think that’s quite fitting; it seems my roots are showing. One of my guiding philosophies, a holdover from my museum years, is the desire to offer “something for everyone” and I therefore have a fairly broad range of price points—everything from a $300 Japanese copper teapot to a “folding ruler” for $6.

p o o k s t y l e offers things that I love, like, and/or believe in. My hope is that others will share my enthusiasms, and so far, anyway, so good! I should also add that at the shop’s core, shoppers will find many Scandinavian products. This “flavor” comes from my childhood in Amesbury, Massachusetts—my Dad was a Finn and my Mom an Olson, so growing up, there were many Scandinavian things in our home.

Gina: What makes a great gift?

Kaarin: Something that the giver feels good about giving—whether it’s because they know it’s just the right fit for the recipient, or because it’s something they have discovered and feel delighted and excited about personally and can then pass that delight along in the giving. 

Gina: What are your thoughts on fun hostess/host gifts?

Kaarin: Things that are attractive, maybe a little out of the ordinary, but also useful. For example, I carry a wonderful line of felt coasters from DAFF of Germany, in a whole range of fabulous colors. I encourage my customers to mix and match—have a little fun and at the same time customize and personalize the gift for your recipient. I carry at all times a variety of delicious Swedish jams—gooseberry, lingonberry, black currant. Always a lovely and tasty offering—and again, most useful. 

Gina: What’s the best gift anyone ever gave you?

Kaarin: When my now husband, then boyfriend, Bob, and I were dating, he gave me a flute one Christmas, something that had been on my Xmas list—along with a harpsichord (hey, a girl could dream!) —for many years. I believe it was a little beyond my parents means to buy me either one, much as they would have liked to, so when I opened that gift on Christmas Day, with my family all around me, my mother and I began to cry! My Mom later said that was when she knew that Bob was the “one for me.” 43 years later (41 wed, 2 dating), I’d say she had it right.

A walk around the shop with Kaarin…

Kaarin: These are Swedish mini Shea butter soaps: lingonberry (lingon), blueberry (blabar), and  cloudberry (hjortron) and Swedish egg white facial soap. I’m very fussy about smells, but I love the fresh, light scent of these Swedish bars. I’ve been giving the egg white facial bar to an 89-year-old friend of my late Mom’s for years, and she swears that it works wonders on her aged skin! Great stocking stuffers, all. 

Kaarin: I love the whimsical design of the B clock—the “B” theme as in bees, birds, and bunnies, the element of surprise when customers realize that it is made of lightweight recycled cardboard. It’s elegance created from everyday, humble materials—love that formula! 

Kaarin: p o o k s t y l e features an ever changing selection of used and rare design books pulled from sister store, Berkshire Books (which my husband Bob helms, and which is located right around the corner at 2 Park Row), as well as one-of-a-kind, unusual, hand-selected titles sprinkled throughout the shop.

Kaarin: A Cabinet of Curiosities at p o o k s t y l e includes rolls of colored cotton string, footed ceramic vessels by Cape Cod potter Frances Kate Johnson, tiny glass vases, angel ornaments from Denmark, red and white Yule candles from Sweden, and felt Moomim purses. On the counter are bundles of the most wonderful, longest-lasting white taper candles from Sweden (which are a p o o k s t y l e staple).

Kaarin: As long as there’s a p o o k s t y l e, there will be rubber stamps and art supplies! This is a terrific new Year of Holidays Stamp Carving Kit from Yellow Owl Workshop, creators and champions of clever rubber stamps of all kinds. There are also handsomely boxed brass key rings from Areaware (old keys being another p o o k s t y l e passion). Color Appeel crayons, ridiculously awesome crayon sticks with fun peel-to-reveal action. The Tea Towel Stencil Kits include two blank 100% cotton tea towels, drawing stencils, and fabric markers. Choose either the veggie or cat motif and have a ball creating your one-of-a-kind tea towel masterpieces! 

Kaarin: A typical p o o k s t y l e mix of fun and whimsical gifts: Melamine portrait plates from London’s National Gallery, classic folding Swedish ruler, brightly colored fabric watches, rubber stamp kits, ink stamp pads in a wide variety of colors, Sturdy cork coasters: choose from We Heart Canada, Chickadee, Snow Shoes. Boxed Cubeots (“a wooden puzzle with a playful personality”).

Kaarin: Here are soft lamb’s wool throws in pink and grey from Klippan, Sweden and a round, ingeniously designed scarf hanger from Japan. The cheerfully colored plastic bins were originally designed as baskets for marketing (veggies in particular stay fresh and intact), but there are any number of uses for these sturdy, light weight containers. I use mine as an elegant guest room wastebasket! 

Kaarin: A delightful tiny village contained in a matchbox. Made in the Netherlands, the 17 wooden pieces can be arranged in endless combinations. A sweet, diminutive stocking stuffer! 

Kaarin: In keeping with my “something for everyone” philosophy, p o o k s t y l e carries a selection of playful and unusual jewelry in a variety of price points. Fun, affordable readers fly out of the store. Available in four different color combinations, many customers buy one of every color and then place them throughout the house, ever at the ready!

Kaarin: These beautiful dreamcatchers are made from vintage Canadian laces. No two alike and they’re available in two sizes. Sweet dreams nearly certain.

Author Seeks Tanglewood Picnic Photos for Book

Author Gina Hyams is creating a book titled The Tanglewood Picnic: Music and Outdoor Feasts in the Berkshires. The gift book will celebrate the tradition of picnics held on the Lawn during concerts at Boston Symphony Orchestra’s summer campus in Lenox, Massachusetts. The book will be both a charming historic document and inspiration for over-the-top picnic style. It is scheduled for publication summer 2015.

Hyams seeks photos of Tanglewood picnics (both lavish and modest), favorite picnic recipes, outdoor dining tips, and related picnic ephemera (such as invitations and menus) from all eras of the festival’s eight-decade history. Submissions of multiple images are welcome. She is particularly interested to hear from people who have made a beloved tradition of picnicking on the Lawn.

Due to print quality restrictions, only high-resolution images can be considered for inclusion (300dpi+ — either scanned or photographed with an iPhone or digital camera). If you have prints and don’t have access to a scanner, Gina will be happy to scan images and return the originals. Email her at the address below and she’ll send you her snail mail address.

Please note caption information, including as much of the following as is known: date, occasion, names of people in the image, types of foods pictured, the name of the photographer, and estate to credit as necessary.

Please also answer this question: What do you love about Tanglewood picnics?

Include your name, address, and phone number.

Submissions will be considered for both print publication and posting on the project’s blog: TanglewoodPicnicBook.tumblr.com.

Deadline for submissions: September 30, 2014.

Email submissions to:

tanglewoodpicnic@gmail.com

Gina Hyams is a Berkshire-based writer and editor who specializes in food, travel, and the arts. She has published eleven books, among them Country Living Decorating with White (Hearst), In a Mexican Garden: Courtyards, Pools, and Open-Air Living Rooms (Chronicle Books), and Pie Contest in a Box: Everything You Need to Host a Pie Contest (Andrews McMeel Publishing). Hyams was a contributing editor to Berkshire Living and a correspondent for Fodor’s Travel Publications. Her essays and articles have appeared in Huffington Post, Newsweek, San Francisco, Organic Style, Ideal Destinations, Healing Lifestyles & Spas, and Salon, as well as broadcast on National Public Radio. For more information, see www.ginahyams.com.

Goose Portraits: Winter 2012/13

Happy New Year! Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest have turned my attention away from this blog, but here are some recent portraits of Goose that I’d like to remember.

 

 

Goose Portraits: Fall 2012

 

Goose Portraits: Summer 2012

Beef, Bourbon, and Roasted Tomato Chili by Hester Velmans, Plus Her Daughter’s Fabulous Pie Wedding

Hester Velmans

 

Berkshire Grown board member Hester Velmans contributed a delectable Beef, Bourbon, and Roasted Tomato Chili to the Share the Bounty Chili Contest. At the event, she told me about her daughter’s pie-themed wedding held at the family’s barn in Sheffield, Mass. last summer. A friend had given my Pie Contest in a Box as a wedding shower present, which of course I was delighted to hear. Here Hester shares both her chili recipe and photos of the wedding pies – guests brought some 70 pies to the celebration!

 

Beef, Bourbon, and Roasted Tomato Chili

by Hester Velmans

Here is the unscientific chili recipe (a pinch of this and a pinch of

that…)

(8 servings)

 

First, braise the beef:

1 1/2-2 lbs cuts of beef, eg. strip steaks (whole)

1 tbs olive oil

4-5 cloves garlic, minced

1 large roasted red pepper, peeled, diced

1 onion, diced

1 jalapeno pepper, minced

1 large can crushed tomatoes

4 tbs molassses

2 tbs Bourbon

1 tsp kosher salt

1 tsp ground pepper

3 tbs ground cumin

1 tbs smoked paprika

1 tbs cayenne or chili powder

Sauté the vegetables in olive oil until soft, add other ingredients, place

beef in roasting pan and pour the sauce over. Cover with foil and roast in a

325 F oven for 2 1/2 hrs or until you can pull the beef apart with a fork.

 

Cool beef and then shred it with a fork into small pieces.

 

Second, make roasted tomatoes (can be done ahead of time):

10 ripe tomatoes, sliced horizontally into thick slices.

Olive oil

Coarse salt, pepper

A few cloves of garlic, not peeled

 

Place tomato slices and garlic on rimmed baking sheet, dribble with oil,

season and bake in 350 F oven 30 minutes to an hour (check!) until tomatoes are

getting caramelized. Cool, then press soft garlic out of garlic skins;

process everything (scraping up caramelized bits) either in food processor

or through a food mill.

 

Third, make chili:

1 or 2 tbs olive oil

2 large onions, diced,

3 bell peppers, any color, diced

1/2 jalapeno pepper, minced

1 large can diced tomatoes

1 tbs chili powder (check seasoning)

1 tsp each of dried oregano and sage

Salt, pepper to taste

1/2 cup Bourbon

1 tsp Worcestershire sauce (to taste)

1 can black beans, drained & rinsed

1 can garbanzo beans, drained

1 ear sweet corn, (cut corn off cob)

 

In a big pot sauté vegetables (except for corn), add Bourbon, cook for

about 5 minutes to reduce liquid by half, add beans, beef mixture and

roasted tomatoes, cook for about 10 minutes, then add the corn and adjust

seasoning. If too thick, add water or some orange juice.

 

Best if reheated the next day! Enjoy!

 

* * * Photos of Hester’s Daughter’s Wedding Pies * * *

Seafood Chili by Laury Epstein

Berkshire Grown board member Laury Epstein contributed an extraordinary seafood chili to the Share the Bounty Chili Contest. She graciously shares the recipe below.

Laury Epstein

Chili of the Sea

by Laury Epstein

Hosteria Fiorella was a wildly popular restaurant  on Third Avenue and the mid-60s, near where we lived in New York City.  This dish was so popular that in the 1980s New York magazine printed the recipe, as found below.

3 slices pancetta, roughly chopped

10 T olive oil

1 c finely diced yellow onion

10 cloves garlic, crushed

3 fresh chili peppers, seeded and thinly sliced

¾ c white wine

Approximately 6 oz. each fresh chicken and turkey link sausage, precooked for 7 minutes and then cut into ½” slices*

3 c chopped tomatoes

2 c plus 6 T canned tomato sauce

2 ½ c canned Great Northern white beans, drained

¾ lb fish fillet (such as flounder), cut in small cubes

¾ lb calamari, cut in rings

30 littleneck clams, minced

1 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined and cut into 2 or 3 pieces

2-3 t cumin powder

Salt to taste

2 T cracked black pepper

If desired, sprinkle chopped parsley, basil, and/or cilantro just before serving**

In a good-size pot, sauté pancetta in olive oil until crisp.  Add onion, garlic, and chili peppers, and cook until tender.  Deglaze pan with wine, then add sausages, tomatoes, tomato sauce, and beans, and simmer over moderate heat, stirring often, for 10 minutes.  Can make chili up to this point well ahead of serving.

Add fish, calamari, clams, and shrimp.  Season with cumin, salt and pepper, and cook, stirring for about 10 minutes.  Stir in fresh herbs and cook for 1 minute longer.

*I was in a minor car accident on my way to Guido’s to get the chicken and turkey sausage, but never got there so to mimic their flavor, I added 2 t dried fennel.  But I’d rather have used the sausage.

**Same excuse for not including the fresh herbs.

Photos from Chili Cook-off in a Box Launch Party/Share the Bounty Benefit Chili Contest at The Meat Market

I woke up pondering the extraordinary diversity of chili recipes and crock pot styles on display at yesterday’s Chili Cook-off in a Box Launch Party/Share the Bounty Benefit Chili Contest at The Meat Market. It was chili as window into the soul, and it revealed some beautiful things about our community. My sincere thanks to everybody who participated in and supported the event. We raised $545, which is enough for Berkshire Grown to buy a full CSA farm share to help feed hungry families next year.

Everyone who attended the contest was given a spoon to sample the chili entries and a bean to vote with by placing it it in the Mason jar in front of their favorite one.

Gina and two young assistants counting the bean votes.

Sean Flynn won 3rd prize with his Grandpa Art’s Cincinnati Chili (which included spaghetti!)

Sean Flynn

Rich Ciotola won second place for his Four Bean Farmer Sausage Chili.

Jeff Blaugrund won first prize for his Jefe’s New Mexican Chile Rojo.

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