Roundup: Serena Williams, Beach Scenes, EMS …

Many Westporters loved Serena Williams big US Open win last night over Anett Kontaveit, the world’s 2nd-ranked player.

There were a couple of local connections — and we don’t mean any fans lucky enough to be in the stands.

Westport-based Birdseye Sports is a large independent production company. Specializing in game-day broadcasting and video productions, they provide camera crews to major networks. ESPN, for example, subcontracts them for the US Open.

Ryan Smith — a 1997 Staples High School graduate, and director of the Bedford Middle School Acting Group — has worked the Open for Birdseye for the past 4 years.

He’s seen a lot. But last night was special. He was behind the camera for Williams’ match.

Ryan Smith, at Arthur Ashe Stadium.

“I still kick myself from time to time, for how lucky I am,” he says.

He did not get home until 2:30 this morning. But he got up early, to head back to Queens. He’ll be behind the camera tonight — again covering Williams. She and her sister play doubles, in what their fans hope will not be their final match together. (Hat tip: Kerry Long)

Ryan Smith and Serena Williams at work.

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Well, that was quick.

Summer, I mean.

School is back in session. And this was the scene yesterday — a beautiful, still-August morning — at Compo Beach:

(Photo/Karen Como)

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Speaking of the beach: “06880” has run stories recently about beach days of old. Rocks instead of sand at Compo; sand instead of rocks at Longshore; demolished bathhouses, no houses along the shore — different days, for sure.

Suzanne Sherman Propp owns an interesting piece of art. It combines several elements of old beach-y Westport — some real, some imagined — in a fanciful way:

Created by Suzanne Urban, in part from a 1906 postcard, it shows bathers at Old Mill Beach; nearby homes (that probably were not there then), and — in the background — the old Longshore lighthouse.

Urban is a 1971 Staples High School graduate. After studying art at Marymount College, she worked as an illustrator.

For steady income she became a secretary at Greens Farms Elementary School, from the early 2000s to 2014. Former Stapleites Propp and Carey Leonard also worked there.

Urban moved with her husband to Windsor. They live in one of the oldest houses (1664), in what residents claim is Connecticut’s oldest town settlement (1633).

Urban has found a niche selling “contemporary folk art” — including holiday-themed work — online.

Her Halloween witches, ghosts and pumpkin-heads and cute. But only a true Wesetporter — like me, Suzanne Sherman Propp, and any “06880” reader — can appreciate the Old Mill Beach of Suzanne Urban’s imagination.

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It’s not too late to sign up for Westport Volunteer Emergency Medical Technician training.

There’s an orientation tonight. Classes begin next Tuesday (September 6).  Most are on Tuesdays and Thursdays, with some Saturdays as well.

The course covers information needed for state certification tests, a prerequisite for joining WVEMS. Click here for more information.

Meanwhile, mark your calendar for September 9 (7 p.m.). DNR — the grimly named, highly entertaining and very professional rock band made up mostly of doctors — plays a free show at the Levitt Pavilion, in honor of Westport Volunteer EMS.

WVEMS personnel will be there, answering questions about donations or joining the ranks.

Standing by, at a Levitt Pavilion concert (though not one headlined by DNR).

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Speaking of the Levitt: Though summer is over (at least, for those with kids in school), outdoor entertainment is not.

In addition to the Orebolo show September 7, featuring Rich Mitarotonda, Peter Anspach and Jeff Arevalo — members of the popular Connecticut rock group Goose — The Levitt just added a special free-ticket show at 1:30 p.m. September 17.

It stars ElephantProof. The band includes Ben Atkind — a founding member of Goose.

ElephantProof is “a euphonic snapshot of the unique sonic energy born at the house parties your best friends still talk about to this day. Refined by disciplined training and years of performance experience, Ben Atkind (drums), Sean Cronin (guitar), Chris Enright (keys) and Shon Gordon (bass) are reconnected, traipsing along the rigid confines of genre using erudite tonal expression.”

I’m not sure what that means, but I’m sure it will be a cool show! Click here for more details, and tickets.

Another piece of Pavilion news: Karina Rykman, whose band plays tomorrow (Friday, September 2), has another gig after the Levitt. She’ll fill in on bass during next week’s Late Night with Seth Meyers Show.

PS: The Levitt has added a “child 12-and-under free ticket” to the BYO-lawn chair section of the Robert Cray show on September 10 (8 p.m.). Click here for details and tickets.

ElephantProof

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Tonight’s (Thursday, 6 to 7 p.m.) MoCA “Cocktails & Conversations” event features the curators of the current “Women Pulling at the Threads of Social Discourse exhibition.”

Attendees will peek behind the scenes, learning more about the works and the artists. Cocktails and drinks are available for purchase.

“Cocktails & Conversations” is free, but advance registration is requested (click here). The exhibition runs through October 2.

Curators of the MoCA exhibit, and speakers at tonight’s event (from left): Maria Gabriela Di Giammarco, Melanie Prapopoulos (founder and director of the CAMP Gallery), Mario Andres Rodriguez), in front of a work by Shelly McCoy. (Photos/Leslie LaSala)

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Earthplace’s fall activities for children and teenagers start soon

They include:

  • “Nature Investigators” (Wednesday afternoons, grades K-2)
  • “Animal Investigators” (Tuesday afternoons, grades 3-5)
  • “Teen Volunteer Club” (Tuesday afternoons, grades 6-12 — animal care skills with hands-on training).

Click here, then click “Programs” for more information.

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Cars with decorations like this can be seen all over town:

(Photo/JD Dworkow)

It’s a long-standing Staples High School tradition: Senior girls (and only the girls) boast about their 12th-grade status on the opening day of school.

And you’ll be seeing these for quite a while. Another part of the tradition is to leave the writing on for a long, long time.

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Sure, there’s a drought. But there are still lots of gorgeous colors out there. Lauri Weiser captured this, for today’s “Westport … Naturally” feature:

(Photo/Lauri Weiser)

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And finally … yes, it’s that time of year again.

The summer has flown by. Now it’s time to fulfill that promise:

 

(“06880” sees you in September … and every other month. Please click here to support the blog that’s here for you 24/7/365.)

9 responses to “Roundup: Serena Williams, Beach Scenes, EMS …

  1. The old mill house’s on the postcard look very much like the ones that were there and some are still there.

  2. Just want to give another shout out to Suzanne Urban. I too worked at GFS during the Urban years and miss those days. Always fun and interesting with Suzannes around (both of them)! Great postcard too.

  3. Carl Addison Swanson, '66

    This senior gal thing may be the dumbest tradition in history. What are they trying to do? Get a date? Why not post your SAT scores while you are it?

    • Says the man who writes checks for large sums, places said checks in his HOME mailbox, checks are eventually stolen and cashed. Proceeds to comes on the internet to let the “world’ now.

      Musta missed the day in 06880 public schools when they taught street smarts.

      • Carl Addison Swanson, '66

        I was warning others. Plus, my homeowners’ paid me as well as finally the bank. Got 20K back. I don’t hold three advanced degrees for nothing there putz.

      • “Proceeds to comes (sic) on the internet to let the”world” now (sic). Looks like you missed a few classes in grammar. I used to always put my outgoing mail in the box with the flag up until I read of Attorney Swanson’s mishap.

    • Old man yells at clouds

  4. I cannot hear the song “See you in September” without thinking of Westport and the summer of 1968, when I met someone that from the first moment felt it was something different. He was a Weston native, and we met at the ShipsLantern, on July 1st, 1968, from the beginning there were fireworks. We had our first date July 4th, he was on leave from the air force in Maine, we spent as much time together as we could the next 4 weeks, when he left he said “See you in September” because Labor Day would the first chance he had to come back to Westport. We dated for the next 2 years, then life took us in different directions, and I married someone else 6 years later. Over the years I stayed in touch with Steve and he was always there for me.

  5. “I really think a champion is defined not by their wins but by how they can recover when they fall. I have fallen several times. Each time I get up and dust myself off.”

    –Serena Williams

    (source: https://discoverquotes.com/serena-williams/)

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