My Town — Louis Hudson
By Enjoy Magazine
My Town — Louis HudsonPhoto by MC Hunter Photography
My Town: No place like home
I was born and raised in Red Bluff. In high school, I found theater production and it became my passion. At 18, I became one of the youngest people that the City of Redding had ever hired. I started working as a stagehand and worked my way up to assistant to the technical director in two years. But the world did not spin fast enough in the North State for me, so I enlisted in the U.S. Army and I loved it.
I wanted action, so I signed up for nearly everything that came my way, no matter the mission or danger. I was thirsty for adventure. However, one thing my platoon sergeant taught our unit was the importance of home and the family and friends that you left there. I did not realize it at the time, but I loved Northern California and it was my home.
I was later medically discharged after an accident. I made a huge mistake, and I did not come home. I stayed in Charleston, SC, and got right back into stage lighting. I always felt out of place on the East Coast and initially resisted moving back west. I toured with many artists – searching the world for home. Finally, my life landed me closer. I was in Sacramento where I could work and be close to family. I started to make connections in the area again, and I started to feel the area call me home.
In 2010, I was in Redding working with Kids Unlimited when my wife said that if I wanted to move from Sacramento to Redding, this was the time. I had a lease on a house that afternoon.
Now, fast forward to 2020. Life is great! Well, we could do without COVID-19, but life in the North State is just awesome. There are so many doors opening here for entertainment and I am so excited to be a part of it. The Civic Auditorium and Advance Redding are doing a tremendous job of booking a wide range of shows. The Cascade Theatre has brought in shows that absolutely test the capabilities of the building. Bethel Conservatory of Arts is producing quality productions that are edgy and thought-provoking. Axiom is renovating a facility not previously known for performing arts. Then there is Riverfront Playhouse’s awesome new facility on California Street. I am looking forward to what happens in that little theater with monster potential.
So, all of this to say this: I have been all over the world, seen many amazing places, but there is no place like Redding, California. I am proud of the things this community has accomplished in recent years. I am amazed at the resilience we have in the face of adversity. We are Shasta Strong and there is nothing this community cannot do when it puts its mind to it.