Roundup: Dolphins, Play With Your Food …


Saugatuck Shores residents got a treat yesterday.

Three dolphins swam into Bermuda Lagoon. They played. They stayed. As of this morning, they were still there.

In tough times, they brought smiles to many faces. (Hat tip: Sara Kempner)

(Photos/Gina Beranek)


Remarkable STEAM — the Maker Faire people — has branched out to support Ukraine.

Thanks to them, you can too.

They’ve created 2 pins — a big one,($10) and a smaller one ($7). All proceeds support charitable causes, including the Red Cross’ Ukraine projects.

Each pin is hand made, so large orders may take a couple of days. Click here for more information, and to order.


Play With Your Food — the popular lunchtime play-reading series — returns to the stage  this month, after 2 years of virtual and outdoor performances.

The date is March 16, at MoCA Westport. The Newtown Turnpike museum has spacious seating for theater and lunching.

PWYF also returns to Fairfield Theater Company (March 15) and Greenwich Arts Council (March 17).

The first program is a tribute to Stephen Sondheim. Broadway veteran (and Westport-based) actress Stacie Morgain Lewis performs with Brian J. Carter the poignant one-act play “Move on or Sondheim at Studio 54. Also on tap: “The Donor” and “Big Date.”

Following the plays and talkbacks, there are boxed lunches catered by Gruel Britannia (Westport & Fairfield) and Meli Melo (Greenwich).

Tickets $60 each, $224 for a 4-month subscription. For more information click here, or call 203-293-8729.  

The Play With Your Food March cast.


Pippa Bell Ader is one of Westport’s go-to environmental experts.

You can be too. On April 5 (11 a.m., Pequot Library, Southport), the Greens Farms Garden Club hosts her presentation of “Sustainable Westport and Its Initiatives.”

Learn how to reduce waste, help the environment, and make a difference. The public is invited. RSVP:


There is no — and I mean no — Westport/entertainment connection that gets by Fred Cantor. He spotted a New York Times obituary of Alan Ladd Jr., and connected the dots:

“Perhaps his biggest claim to fame was acquiring the rights to ‘Star Wars’ when it was just a concept.

“What I did not know until reading this was that Jeff Berg, who spent the first part of his childhood here, was the very young agent in 1973 who represented George Lucas, and who brought it to Alan Ladd Jr.’s attention.

“Berg went on to become chairman of ICM — and ‘Star Wars’ went on to be one of the biggest franchises in movie history.

“Berg’s love of movies most likely began right here at the Fine Arts Theater. But could he ever have imagined as a kid that one day a movie concept he was trying to promote would wind up on the marquee of the Fine Arts — and that it would change the way Hollywood approached movie-making?”

For good measure, Fred sends a photo he took in 1977, of the Fine Arts Theater. Playing at Fine Arts I that day was — of course — “Star Wars.”

(Photo/Fred Cantor)


Congratulations to the Coleytown Middle School Math Club. They finished first in the unofficial statewide Mathcounts competition, by a wide margin. Congrats to Bedford’s team too, which came in 3rd.

MoCA Westport is looking for counselors (ages 16 and up) and counselors in training (14 to 16) at Camp MoCA Westport this summer.

The camp runs June 10 through August 26, 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday. A minimum 4-week commitment (preferably consecutive) is required. And yes, it’s a paying gig.

To apply, click here.

MoCA campers and staff members.



Next “up” in the Westport Astronomical Society’s free online lecture series: “Swinging Around the Sun with the Parker Solar Probe.”

NASA project scientist Dr. Nour E. Raouafi is the virtual guest on March 15 (8 p.m.). Click here for the Zoom link; click here for the YouTube livestream.


Peter Cook, of Westport and Boothbay Harbor, Maine, died suddenly at his home in Maine  on Wednesday. He was 65.

A star athlete in high school, he played football at the University of Maine. After graduation he had an accomplished career as a group insurance executive with Unum, The Hartford, Aetna and Guardian Life.

A Westport resident since 1993, Peter loved the town and community, especially Compo Beach and the Ned Dimes Marina, Staples High School sports, and JoyRide Cycling.

After retiring, he fulfilled lifelong dreams by pursuing positions within the Boothbay community. He worked at Hodgdon Yacht Services, combining his love for the water, boats, his community and its people. His friends called him an “aquatic transportation engineer.”

He also served on the board of the Boothbay Harbor Memorial Library, overseeing their capital campaign for a new addition. An avid reader, he instilled that love in his children.

Peter loved nothing better than spending time with his family at their compound on Appalachee Pond. Among his greatest joys were golfing, watching his children’s athletic accomplishments, spending time on the water on his boat Heavenly Days, and playing with his grandchildren and grandnieces. He savored and boasted about his wife’s gourmet meals and decadent desserts.

Peter also enjoyed spinning, yoga, and smoking an occasional Winston Churchill cigar.

His family says: “Peter had a very determined outlook. Some might say he was competitive, but it proved to be one of his best character traits as he doggedly overcame obstacles and constructed a very fulfilling life. He daydreamed about how he would spend his latter years with his family, what projects and house renovations he would undertake, and where he would travel with his wife, children, and their children.

Peter is survived by his wife Jacqueline; daughter Julie Hoadley (Ryan), and sons Matthew (Carlie) and Jason (Kayla); grandsons Quinn and Forrest, and siblings Cathlene Parkhurst, Michael Cook, Mary Jane Tracy and their families.

A memorial service will be held this Wednesday (March 9, 2 p.m., Greens Farms Congregational Church).
Donations in Peter’s name can be made to Boothbay Harbor Memorial Library.
To extend online condolences, light a candle for Peter or share a story or picture, click here.

Peter Cook


Human beings stay warm by huddling together. So did these guys at Compo Beach, in today’s “Westport … Naturally” photo.

(Photo/June Rose Whittaker)


And finally … Bob Wills was born today, in 1905. He’s one of the founders of Western swing, and his Texas Playboys remain among the best of the genre. Wills died in 1975.

2 responses to “Roundup: Dolphins, Play With Your Food …

  1. charles taylor

    I had lunch with The Texas Playboys Bobs band in Balinger Texas-in 1968. I saw their bus at lunch time. It was a small Cafe and when I walked in they were all sitting at a kind table. I was getting ready to sit alone and they invited me to sit with them. I was stunned and mighty pleased.

  2. Caroline Howe

    So great —– posting this tribute to Bob Wills and The Texas Playboys!!