Roundup: Long Lots Preserve, Lyman Video, Marigny Chocolate …

Long Lots Preserve — the perimeter around the the Westport Community Gardens adjacent to the elementary school — is halfway to its 4-phase, 2-year goal of ecologically restoring the once-neglected town property.

Results are spectacular. Invasive plants are being removed; native trees, shrubs, wildflowers and grasses are planted in their place.

Needed next: dead tree trunks, to cover the forest floor.

Decomposing tree trunks promote the growth of bug populations. They in turn supply local and migrating bird populations with an important source of food, especially in the spring when they feed their young.

Long Lots Preserve team director Lou Weinberg asks for donations of anyone with tree trunks they want to get rid of. Any condition is fine. Tree services or individuals can drop off tree truck logs at the site.

For details, email longlotspreserve@gmail.com . You can also click here for the website, or follow on Instagram: @longlotspreserve. (Hat tip: Dick Lowenstein)

Earlier work at the Long Lots Preserve.

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Westport’s drive to raise $250,000 to help our new Ukrainian sister city of Lyman has neared the $200,000 mark. To be exact: $196,200.

That’s a remarkable outpouring of support from Westport residents (and their friends and relatives elsewhere, and former Westporters scattered around the world).

Whether you’ve already contributed, or just thought about it: Take a few minutes to check out this video.

Brian Mayer (the Westporter who co-founded Ukraine Aid International) and Liz Olegov (co-founder of the Alex21 aid group) filmed conditions on the ground in Lyman. It describes better than words ever could the harrowing situation in our sister city, and the need for help.

(Video editing by Clyde and Katya Wauchope)

Meanwhile, our friends in our other sister city — Marigny, France — are ready to join Westport in our efforts to help Lyman.

Next month — in his New Year’s address to the town — Marigny’s mayor will announce our partnership, and ask residents there to pitch in.

Meanwhile, the Christmas Day delivery of 400 fresh holiday meals, and gifts to 491 children — thanks in part to Westporters’ donations, and our partners on the ground, Ukraine Aid International and Alex21 — jogged the memories of some long-time Marigny citizens.

In 1966, 2 Westporters — David Salfati and his wife — were interviewed by Ouest-France News.

They described how in 1947, a Westport chocolate maker sent 400 kilograms of chocolate — about 800 pounds — of chocolate to Marigny. Residents in the Normandy town were still recovering from World War II.

The chocolatier — whose name has been lost to history — chose that amount because there were 400 children living in Marigny.

Right now, 491 youngsters remain in Lyman.

Seventy-five years later, almost the exact number of children need help, in another war-torn nation. Westport and Marigny are proud to work together, as 2 sister cities aiding a third.

To help, click here for a credit card “Donate” button. Click “I want to support”; then select “Support for the City of Lyman.” You can also scroll down on that page for other donation options (mail, wire transfer and Venmo.) Or you can donate directly, via Stripe (click here). 

The 1966 news story about Westport’s aid to Marigny — including 400 kg of chocolate.

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The last Jazz at the Post show of the year features Kenny Wessel on guitar.

Known for his “adventurous solo voice, unrelenting swing and sensitive accompaniment skills,” and his “rare blend of tradition and fiery innovation,” he’s a Westport favorite.

Wessel has played with saxophonist Greg “The Jazz Rabbi” Wall since the early 1990s.

Dave Richards joins on bass, with Steve Johns on drums.

There are 2 shows this Thursday (December 29): 7:30 and 8:45 p.m. Dinner service begins at 7. There’s a $15 cover. Reservations are strongly recommended: JazzatthePost@gmail.com.

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Morton Silverberg died Christmas day, from heart disease. He was 92.

After graduating from MIT in 1953, he worked as an engineer at Remington Rand, RCA, Xerox and Pitney Bowes. He has over 100 patents in his name, ranging from copier technology to “the perfect paper clip.”

When he and his wife Phyllis moved to Westport in 1985, they began “the best years of their lives.” He sailed, played tennis and became an active participant in the Y’s Men of Westport and Weston. He said he “never had so many friends” in his life.

Mort is survived by his daughters, Judy Ross and Lynn McDonald, and  grandchildren Ben and Tyler Ross, and Amy McDonald. His wife Phyllis died last month.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Y’s Men of Westport and Weston.

Mort Silverberg

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“Do they know it’s Christmas?”

“Nobody here but us chickens.”

What’s your caption for today’s “Westport … Naturally” photo?

(If you’re wondering: This coop is on Hillspoint Road, just south of I-95.)

(Photo/Matt Murray)

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And finally … you knew this was coming, right?

(Don’t be chicken! Please click here to support “06880.” Thank you!)

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