Friday Flashback #250

So many Westport businesses start out in one place, then end up another.

From Earth Animal and Calico (very recently) to Mitchell’s (now at its third site) and (Viva Zapata (original location: Post Road near the current Playhouse Square), even the most established establishments have wanderlust.

Generations of Westporters remember Sport Mart on Main Street. Before that though, it was in Sconset Square. (The shopping plaza was then called by the much more normal local name “Sherwood Square.”)

(Photo courtesy of Paul Ehrismann)

After moving a few hundred yards west in the 1960s, the old Sport Mart became many things.

But the first place where Westporters once bought tennis racquets, skis and other sports equipment has returned to its roots.

Today it once again serves athletes of all abilities.

These days, it’s Fleet Feet.

12 responses to “Friday Flashback #250

  1. Joey Kaempfer

    This is Joey Kaempfer. I worked for the kind and generous owner of The Sport Mart, Danny Coughlin, for many years selling, running his Fairfield store, teaching kids to ski on the Saturday bus trips. Great Sherwood Square memories.

  2. Which was here first: Schaefer’s or the Sport Mart? Also, I recall the Sport Mart as seemingly focused on tennis and ski equipment while Schaefer’s seemed to be more of a general sporting goods store (where I bought soccer shoes, basketballs, etc). As for my badminton racquet that cost 99 cents, I bought that at Barker’s (or perhaps it was Caldor)🤨.

    • Michael Calise

      If I remember correctly “Tip” Schaefer was the Greens Farms Postmaster he lived on Virginia Lane abutting Greens Farms School and sold sporting goods out of his basement. I bought my first baseball mitt there in 1948 or 9.
      Subsequent to that he retired from the post office and opened Schaefer’s Sporting Goods in Westport Center. If you played a sport and lived in Westport it was the only place to go. The Sport Mart came later and it was a very different store. (hunting, fishing later skiing and tennis)

  3. Patrick Eastin

    I remember Sport Mart well. I purchased my Garcia fishing rod at Sport Mart with my weekly allowance “salary” in 1969. I still have this rod.

  4. Seth Goltzer

    I believe it became a aliquot Store after Sport Mart, anyone remember Carousel Toys across the lot?

    • Carousel had the misfortune of burning down twice: first at Compo Acres Shopping Center, then at its “new” location at Sherwood Square.

  5. Bruce Fernie SHS 1970

    I loved the Sport Mart and Danny was great. My father always kidded that he put Danny’s kids through college with all the gear we needed to ski!

  6. Tom Duquette, SHS '75

    I remember Carousel Toys quite well and also remember when it burned down in the 1970’s. Another old store in Sherwood Square was The Paint Bucket, my mother worked there before she got married. I vaguely recall a pharmacy that had a lunch counter in the square too but the name escapes me. Sport Mart and Schaefer’s were great stores.

    • Was it the Pickle Barrel? Where Le Penguin most recently was.

      • Tom Duquette, SHS '75

        Yes Dan, that was it. The Pickle Barrel- I just have this faint memory of my mother taking me there on a rainy afternoon and having a grilled cheese sandwich. Was there a pharmacy there too?