Dick Hay Pie: An Oral History

...or, how memories fade after 45 years!

Richard Hay: “It was either ‘69 or ‘70. It had to have been after Craig had started at Southern Oregon University.  Ashland was a pretty quiet town then. They’re weren’t many theatre folks who stayed over the winter back then and in order to entertain ourselves, we would throw these potluck dinner parties.”


Craig Hudson: “Well, way back, Richard Hay was the quintessential dinner party host and when I was invited... it was terrifying. Everything was perfect… the courses came flowing out of the kitchen, the table settings were brilliant. It was all effortless and wonderfully cooked and I thought, “oh, no, how am I going to reciprocate?”‘


Richard: “One of the parties we did - and this one was hosted by Craig - was kind of a dessert bake-off.”


Craig: “I think in one of the dinner party volleys, I needed a dessert and I thought - well, Richard likes hot fudge, he likes peanut butter, and I was going to try something new.”


Richard: “I really should say I’m very fond of peanuts and peanut butter. I have a few cookbooks dedicated specifically to that.”




Craig: “So I made this ice cream pie - vanilla ice cream with the peanut butter really variegated in there, drizzled with hot fudge and I asked after the party, “do you think Dick liked the dessert?” the response was “He ate two of them - he ate mine!” So when I made what was the first Dick Hay pie - it was in his honor.”’


Richard: “I can’t remember if it won the grand prize at the bake-off, but it was very well favored. Now my claim to fame in Ashland is being synonymous with the pie. I go in to the bank and the teller will say ‘oh, I love your pie’ and I’m always quick to tell people it’s Craig’s pie.”


Sylvia Medeiros: “I had patrons call me once and ask if we were still selling that ice cream pie and said we were, they bought tickets and I asked, “Don’t you want to know what’s playing?” They said it didn’t matter as long as were still serving that pie.”


Craig: “I almost think we should stop calling it Dick Hay pie. Richard Hay needs something more important named after him than a frozen dessert.”