Roundup: Holiday Stroll Is On Tonight; World Cup Is On Today, 10 am @ The Library ….

Important note: Today’s Holiday Stroll is on — rain or shine!

Over 40 stores and restaurants — plus Santa, face painters, a balloon artist, Staples and Greens Farms Academy singers and other carolers — look forward to seeing you this evening, from 5 to 7 p.m. on Main Street, Church Lane, the Post Road and across the river. The main tent will be outside Cold Fusion.

Dress warmly. Wear reindeer — I mean, rain gear — if needed. Ho ho ho! See you there.

And for more information — including all the participating stores and restaurants — click here.

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USA! USA! USA!

If you can’t be in Qatar this morning (10 a.m. kickoff, our time) cheering the American team on in its World Cup round of 16 match against the Netherlands, go to the next best place.

The Westport Library.

Today’s broadcast begins a series of matches, live on the 18-foot screen. The Trefz Forum will also host the quarterfinals next Friday (December 9), 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.), and the semifinals on Tuesday and Wednesday, December 13 and 14 (2 p.m.).

The games will be very exciting. The players will be larger than life. But — hey, this is still a library — fans should bring a mobile device to download the Sennheiser app, and headphones or earbuds to listen.

Christian Pulisic’s pulsating goal powered the US past Iran on Tuesday. The win vaulted the Americans into the knockout round. (Photo/Odd Andersen for AFP)

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Also at the Westport Library: the final evening of the Short Cuts Film Festival.

Five narrative films will be screened on Thursday (December 8, 7 p.m.).

“Pragma” is a British rom-com. “Hallelujah” is a reminder that “trouble won’t last always.” “Lilith & Eve” is a feminist reimagining of Lilith, Adam’s first wife. “Life Remembered” is a hybrid live-action and virtual reality short depiction of a cowboy who leads a double life.”F^cK ‘Em R!GHT B@cK” follows a queer aspiring rapper who accidentally eats an edible. A talk back follows the final film.

Click here for more information on the films, and to purchase tickets ($25, including refreshments).

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One of Westport’s favorite toy drives begins today.

The Westport Police Department and Police Athletic League will again collect gifts for underprivileged children in Fairfield County.

Officers will accept new, unopened and unwrapped toys — plus cash donations — in the ASF Sports & Outdoors parking lot (1560 Post Road East), this weekend and next, between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m.

Toy collection boxes are also available at:

  • Westport Police Department, 50 Jesup Road
  • ASF Sports & Outdoors, 1560 Post Road East
  • PAL ice rink, Longshore
  • Awesome Toys & Gifts, 429 Post Road East
  • The Toy Post, 180 Post Road East.

Questions? Contact Officer Craig Bergamo: 203-341-6000; cbergamo@Westportct.gov.

Westport Police toy drive at ASF.

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A couple of hundred kids thronged Wakeman Town Farm yesterday, for the annual Christmas tree lighting.

Over 50 young musicians played carols …

… and 1st Selectwoman Jen Tooker, with Wakeman relative Tom Constantino, counted down to the lighting up …

1st Selectwoman Jen Tooker (far right), and the Wakeman Town Farm tree. (Photos/Dan Woog)

… and then everyone enjoyed hot chocolate and cookies.

All that was missing was snow.

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Club 203 — the great new social group for adults with disabilities — is planning its biggest event yet.

A holiday party is set for Wakeman Town Farm on Tuesday, December 13 (7:30 to 9 p.m.).

Outdoor and inside activities include a hot cocoa bar, cookies, cider donuts and more. Click here to register.

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The Westport Garden Club has made its annual deliveries of wreaths to non-profit and service organizations around town.

Each year the club organizes a workshop for members. They bring cuttings and natural embellishments from their gardens, making special bows for unique designs.

Among the recipients: Homes with Hope, the Gillespie Center, Wakeman Town Farm, the Westport Museum for History & Culture, the Senior Center, Westport Parks & Recreation Department, the Aspetuck Health District, and Earthplace.

Westport Garden Club wreaths are on sale today at the Westport Museum’s Holly Days Market.

Westport Garden Club members, ready to deliver their holiday wreaths.

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Something from Tiffany’s” — the romcom produced by Reese Witherspoon — begins streaming on December 9 (Amazon Prime Video).

Westporters should have a special interest in it: The director is 2002 Staples High School graduate Daryl Wein.

The other day, he hung out at the official Los Angeles premiere, with her:

Daryl Wein and Reece Witherspoon

(Hat tip: Fred Cantor)

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Hear ye, hear ye!

Our Local Town Crier has just published its annual Holiday Gift Guide. There are plenty of good ideas and links, plus a comprehensive list of December events. Click here to see.

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Speaking of gifts: Pop down to a holiday pop-up this Friday (December 9, noon to 4 p.m., Yoga 45 at 201 Main Street).

There’s a great selection of clothing, jewelry and artwork from local businesses — and a portion of the sales benefit A Better Chance of Westport.

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After 3 riveting performances of “The Laramie Project” last month, the Unitarian Church’s UU Players offer an encore.

They’ll repeat the powerful drama about the Wyoming community’s reaction to the 1998 murder of gay college student Matthew Shepard next Saturday (December 10, 7 p.m., Unitarian Church of Westport). There’s a talkback with the director and cast right after the show.

It’s a benefit for Triangle Community Center, Fairfield County’s center for LGBTQ programming and resources.

Click here for tickets ($20 suggested donation; pay what you can) and livestream information.

“Laramie Project” talkback, at the Unitarian Church. (Hat tip and photo/Jill Johnson Mann)

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Sandy Rothenberg notes that the Bayberry Lane bridge — which up until recently announced a completion date of November 30, 2022 — now has nothing listed.

(Photo/Sandy Rothenberg)

Sandy wonders, “Is that a bad sign?”

I’d say yes, it’s a bad sign.

In both senses of the term.

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The Westport Pod of B.I.G. Connecticut — a global women’s empowerment community — hosts a holiday cocktail networking event at the Westport Woman’s Club (December 15, 5:30 p.m.). Local women-owned businesses will be featured.

The public is invited. Tickets are $30, and include wine and appetizers. For more information, email bigconnecticutregion@gmail.com.

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Looking for a non-holiday event?

The Westport Astronomical Society’s free online science lecture series welcomes Dr. Brett Denevi, of the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, and deputy principal investigator for the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera.

She’ll talk about “the moon up close and personal,” including unprecedented mapping of its surface.

The virtual event is December 20 (8 p.m.). Click here for the livestream.


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Today’s “Westport … Naturally” photo comes from Rick Hochman.

Let’s hope they grow their winter coats soon.

(Photo/Rick Hochman)

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And finally … in honor of tonight’s Big Event (see top story above):

(To help support activities like tonight’s Stroll, please consider a contribution to “06880.” Click here — and thank you!)

 

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