Some folks wander around Westport, waxing poetic about their surroundings.
If you’re on Sturges Highway, you’ll find poetry — literally.
Mark Yurkiw and Wendy Van Vie walk their dogs every day. Around the corner from their house, there’s “poetry on a stick.”
Anyone is welcome to enjoy the offerings, which change regularly.
Robert Frost took the road less traveled.
If you’ve got a choice in Westport, try Sturges Highway.
There must be a special place in hell reserved for people who make a big show out of cleaning up after their dogs — and then (when you’re not looking) leave the wrapped-up crap right where they found it.
They can’t be bothered to walk to a trash can, or put it in another bag and carry it home.
Alert “06880” reader Gus Ghitelman spotted this sign today on Otter Trail, off Imperial Avenue.
I’m not sure if the blue bag is there to demonstrate what not to do, or if it’s someone’s not-very-subtle response to the sign.
Either way, the practice of not cleaning up your pooch’s poop stinks.
In the biggest defeat for scientific inquiry since Senator James Inhofe looked at rising global temperatures, sea levels and catastrophic weather events and said “Nah,” RoadSnacks.com has used “data and science” to identify the 10 most boring places to live in Connecticut.
You or I might think that meant examining things like beaches, restaurants, library events, art shows and Country Playhouse performances.
You or I would be wrong.
RoadSnacks — more specifically, a boring-looking twit named Sam Sparkes – has decided that the way to determine boringness is by looking at 128 towns with populations of at least 5,000.
They then determined the percentage of folks over 35 (an arbitrary age; “higher is more boring”); percentage of married households, households with kids and people over 65 (for all, “higher is more boring”); median age (“higher is more boring” — a statement that is pretty boring itself), and percentage of young residents ages 18-34 and population density (for both, “lower is more boring”).
Using those plucked-from-the-sky criteria, RoadSnacks — which not only has never been confused with Scientific American, but probably has never been looked at by any human being, because why? — determined that the most boring place in Connecticut is … West Simsbury.
And there in 8th place — following Orange, Essex Village, Georgetown, Northwest Harwinton, North Haven and Somers, but ahead of Old Saybrook and Cheshire — is Westport.
To which, there is only one answer:
This town is sooooo boring! There’s never anything to do here! (Photo/Terry Cosgrave)
Nearly every weekend, Bob Braczyk and his wife Monica Bernier come to Westport from their Manhattan apartment.
Every morning they’re here — rain or shine — Bob joins Mark Yurkiw and his wife Wendy Van Wie on their daily 3.5-mile dog walk. The route includes Cross Highway, Sturges Highway, Meeker Road and Bayberry Lane.
Bob is here to relax. But when he joins the Yurkiws Bob brings a plastic claw, and the biggest recycled plastic bag he can find. He wants to clean the streets of his weekend hometown.
No matter how big the bag — and some are huge — he always fills it up. By the end, he’s stuffing in more trash than it can hold.
Bob Braczyk, with one day’s haul. Keeping pace is Wendy Van Wie.
Mostly, Mark says, the garbage is
- Coffee cups
- Beer cans
- Liquor bottles
- Cigarette packs
- Fast food wrappers
- Really gross things
“It’s virtually always the same items,” Mark says. “And I suspect from the same people — who live here.”
It’s great that Bob — who lives here only a couple of days a week — cleans up after us.
But what a shame he has to.
The 3rd annual “06880″ party is just a week away.
And if you’re reading this, you’re invited.
Thursday, July 16 (6 p.m.) is the day and time. The far end of Compo’s South Beach — away from the cannons, near the boat and kayak launch, the best place to watch the sunset — is the place. (Still confused? See the aerial view below.)
Every member of the “06880″ (as in, this website) community is invited. We welcome frequent commenters and lurkers. Folks who have lived here all their lives, and those who moved here yesterday. Even those who want beach parking to remain as is, and those who hope it doesn’t. (But let’s make this party a beach-comment-free zone.)
The tagline for “06880″ is “Where Westport meets the world.” Next Thursday, that world comes to Compo.
Bring your own food, beverages, beach chairs and blankets. Then mix, mingle and enjoy the evening with the “06880″ crowd.
There’s no charge. It’s a “fun-raiser,” not a fundraiser.
See you next Thursday!
The blue arrow marks the “06880” party spot.
We’ve seen the rockets’ red glare. The bombs bursting in air.
We’ve left our beach chairs, tents, flip flops and food in the Compo Beach sand.
But Westport’s Parks and Rec crew is up to the task. They see our garbage, and in a fantastic show of coordination, energy and grit they remove it.
Betsy P. Kahn was up at 6 this morning. She lives on the shore, and took her regular dawn walk. Today, she brought her camera. Here’s what she saw:
Meanwhile, here are 2 more looks back at the night before the morning after:
(All photos/Betsy P. Kahn)
It’s our biggest party of the year: the fireworks.
But there’s so much more to Westport’s Greatest Day of the Year than that. Here’s how we kicked off the 4th of July weekend:
This is one very patriotic dog. (Photo/David Squires)
It’s a fireworks tradition: reserve your spots early!
Andrew Colabella and Shelley Welch make a patriotic pair.
These guys — Sam Seideman, Graham Day, Lorenzo Rinaldi, Chris Chamberlin and Kyle Chamberlin — set up a stand on Soundview Drive. They sold food, drinks, necklaces and more — and ran a raffle. Part of the proceeds went to the Hole in the Wall Gang Camp. That’s the American spirit!
A drum and dance corps from White Plains rehearsed in the parking lot. After donning their uniforms, they wowed the crowd.
“06880” readers know Betsy P. Kahn for her great photos. Here she is with her husband Dan — in front of the Soundview Drive house she photographed for “06880” yesterday.
Connie Anstett is 93 years old. She remembers when the fireworks were shot off by the cannons — and kids watched from the tops of their parents’ station wagons.
Police patrolled on foot, motorcycles — and bikes. Ned Batlin was stopped everywhere by students, who know him from DARE programs and coaching.
Music Theater of Connecticut’s Glee group performed, to the delight of a large crowd near the pavilion.
Daisy Mae offered glitter tattoos and metallic jewelry. For some reason, red, white and blue were popular colors. (Photo/Audrey Hertzel)
This was one of the biggest crowds ever — perhaps 15,000. Not a lot of room to move, but no one cared.
Hooray for the red, white and blue!
Bipartisanship: Democratic Board of Education member Elaine Whitney and Republican Planning & Zoning Commissioner Al Gratrix. (Photo/Martin Gitlin)
And the obligatory fireworks shot! (Photo/Betsy P. Kahn)
Tomorrow is the 3rd of July. Cue the fireworks!
In May, I asked “06880” readers to crowd-source Memorial Day photos. Dozens came in. By early afternoon, I posted a selection. It was a great way to see the parade, through many different eyes.
Let’s do the same tomorrow. As you get ready for the fireworks — picnicking, painting faces red-white-and-blue, playing with sparklers — send your photos (email: email@example.com). Deadline: 10 p.m. Please include brief identification if needed, and of course your own name.
I’ll post some (not all!) by early morning.
Be creative! We want special photos, for our special day. Just one request: Go easy on the fireworks photos. No offense, but unless you’re a real pro they all look the same.
It’s not a fireworks celebration without American flag wear…
…or a flag top hat.