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NOTHING TO DO IN RICHMOND COUNTY: Celebrating 43 years of food and fun at Hudson Brothers Deli

Photo by William R. Toler - Richmond Observer

As most of you know, I’m not a native to Richmond County, but have been here for the better part of a decade. One common complaint I hear is: “There’s nothing to do.”

My often-busy weekend schedule is a testament to the falsity of that assertion.

About a month ago, I started using the hashtag #nothingtodoinrichmondcounty as a snide jab at those who bellyache at — in their eyes — the lack of local activities.

I find it fitting to start this column series with one of my favorite and longstanding haunts: Hudson Brothers Deli.

Today (Sept. 26) marks the 43rd anniversary of the downtown Rockingham restaurant and bar.

While I do admit to not really going during my first 16 months despite working less than a block away (I could never tell if they were open), I have been almost once a week since.

The business was started by Rex and Ray Hudson in 1980 and has been a popular spot ever since, serving up spuds and sandwiches, soft drinks and hard drinks.

Click here to read more about the history of Hudson Brothers.

Robin Roberts, Diane Whitfield and the rest of the staff on the floor and in the kitchen keep the food and drinks flowing for the many loyal customers who come in day in and day out.

One of the biggest draws for me is the live music every Friday night.

I sadly had to miss many of those nights during my time as editor of the local print pub, but try to make it out as much as I can and photograph the bands that set up and play (even if the pics are with my cellphone.)

I’ve formed many of my friendships sitting at the bar and have even been invited “on stage” to perform a few times (sometimes begrudgingly), as well as sing and play during karaoke and open mic nights.


Hudson Brothers recently started hosting “Quiz Show,” hosted by Matt Harrelson. I’m currently the reigning champ, winning the first two trivia nights.

The next time you’re sitting home on a Friday evening and think, “There’s nothing to do,” head over to Hudson Brothers and support a local business and the local music scene.

You might even run into your friendly neighborhood editor.

Award-winning journalist William R. Toler is managing editor of the Richmond Observer.

Editor’s note: A correction was made to a name in this article.

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Managing Editor William R. Toler is an award-winning writer and photographer with experience in print, television and online media.