Saugatuck School Shenanigans

An alert “06880” reader — not the same one who wrote yesterday about the towing of cars during last weekend’s Blues, Views & BBQ Festival — emailed this morning:

I was at Saugatuck Elementary School around 7:30 p.m. tonight. Parking was terrible. A PAL football practice was just ending, and Back To School Night was going on. The 2 events overlapped by about 30 minutes. Clearly, Saugatuck Elementary is not intended for that quantity of vehicles.

Nonetheless, there was legal parking on the street. People had to walk a bit, though.

What surprised me was the number of cars that drove over curbs to park on lawns, regardless of sprinklers. The amount of double-parked cars, cars parked clearly where no parking existed, in fire lanes and crosswalks was astonishing.

I even saw a Range Rover blocking in a Maserati. At least the Range Rover left its flashers on.

Saugatuck parking - 1

Saugatuck parking - 4


Saugatuck parking - 2

Saugatuck parking - 3

19 responses to “Saugatuck School Shenanigans

  1. It’s just more evidence that many locals think they are “entitled.” It shows in their parking, their driving, and in their general attitudes, and it appears to be dominating the “character” of Westport, so I guess that’s the future here.

  2. Dan, when is everyone going to get the memo that, as Westporters, we are some of the most important people around. Some Westporters seem even more important than other Westporters…and their children are smarter so the parking certainly should be better and more convenient for them. When, as a town, are we not going to recognize that this behavior is here to stay. The important self entitled Westporters have invaded and are not going anywhere. They are also teaching and passing on their self entitlement to the next generation for them to improve upon it.

    • Jamie, I think of that every time I see someone driving while talking on a cellphone, or doing some other entitled behavior, with kids in the car. Then they’re surprised when their teenagers get their licenses, and do the same.

      Or when parents leave their mess at Starbucks for someone else to pick up. Or leave their dog poop on the field at Wakeman, or the beach.

      And then they’re surprised their kids grow up with the same mentality.

  3. …it’s like a poker game here, BMWs or better to open…

  4. Elisabeth Keane

    Is that pickup truck parked on someone’s lawn?

  5. Hope Napelbaum Clark

    Wow! Every time I read these posts I shake my head and realize that this is not the Westport that I grew up in . It seems like there are a lot of jerks living there now . Self entitled and self serving . When did things change ??

    • Agree, Hope. I remember the Saugatuck El of old where all the parents and teachers gathered on the front steps for caroling every year at Christmas time. One of my favorite childhood memories. Also every spring, the big family square dance night on the back black top. Don’t remember parking issues like this ever discussed – it was all so civil and this behavior was unheard of. That being said – it’s 2015 — different world, we were out in Portland, OR recently visiting our daughter, loved the city — hated the traffic and the driving manners. The natives are complaining about the Californians moving in and ruining it. We were driving out there among some real jerks — most from CA we were told –it was downright scary. So, perhaps this is happening everywhere and Westport is just one more casualty of a very self-focused society. Really sad.

      • Thanks for the comments, BJ. Of course, your Saugatuck El (on Bridge Street) is not the same as the current one (Riverside Avenue — former Staples High School, then Bedford Junior High and Middle School).

        • Yes, lol, Dan – I was in elementary school in the mid and late 60’s — looong time ago — on Bridge Street. Perhaps the parking was better there at the old location. I left not long after starting jr. high. Can’t quite remember the parking at Bedford Jr. High.

  6. Dan Lasley (Laz)

    I’m going to disagree – this may look like the same species of duck, but it’s not. No elementary school has enough parking for all of its teachers, staff and parents at the same time, nor should they – this only happens 3-4 times a year, the police know about it in advance, and except for the truck on the lawn, no one else is inconvenienced.
    If you want to say that dealing with overloaded parking at back-to-school night teaches people that it’s OK to park haphazardly at other times in other places, fine. But the school events themselves are not the problem.

  7. Cathleen O'Brien

    Entitled and outrageous parking choices aside (unbelievable!), there is a real problem with a shortage of spaces and overall road safety around Saugatuck during school wide events. As a Saugatuck parent I have come to dread these functions knowing that unless I arrive very early I will need to park veryveryvery far away, sometimes in a spot that requires a death defying dash across the autobahn also known as Riverside Avenue. This situation is even worse during the snowy/icy winter months. Not sure what the solution is – all of the parents do need to be there, but there is simply not enough parking. SES, knowing that holding a school wide event will lead to such chaos, should perhaps do more to encourage carpooling, walking, cycling, taxis etc. Maybe then there would be less of the insane and desperate photos posted above! I will forward this post to the principal to see if she has any ideas.

  8. Michael Petrino

    This is a dog bites man story. The righteous indignation is getting old.

    The typical resident of Westport has no more feeling of entitlement than does the average American. Americans feel that if they want something they are entitled to it. If they want ice cream, they are entitled to it, and if they can’t afford it, they are entitled to have someone else pay for it.

    At least the people in these pictures parked their own cars.

  9. Cathleen O'Brien

    SES parents just received an email from the principal encouraging carpools for tonight’s back to school events and urging parents to not park on private property. Hopefully that will help.

  10. Catherine Burnett

    Sounds like a half hour difference in start/ end times could help. Perhaps a master scheduler or calendar would help for these events. The same way companies handle the booking of conference rooms. This won’t cure for affluenza but it may alleviate some parking messes.

  11. How about using shuttle buses to and from a near by parking lot?

  12. When is a taste of Saugatuck ?

    Sent from my iPad