Roundup: Saugatuck Zoning, MLK Day, Remarkable Bookcycle …

The Representative Town Meeting (RTM) will hold a special public hearing on January 17 (7:30 p.m., Zoom) to review last month’s Planning & Zoning Commission decision to create a new zoning and map amendment in Saugatuck.

The vote rezoned 11 properties, and could pave the way for the new Hamlet at Saugatuck retail/hotel/marina project.

The RTM’s Planning & Zoning Committee planned to hold a public meeting to review the P&Z Commission’s decision last night. However, due to a Zoom glitch allowing a maximum of 100 people to attend at a time, with more seeking to participate, the meeting was canceled.

Further meetings are set for January 10 and 12, via Zoom (7 p.m.). The RTM Transit Committee will also meet on Monday, to discuss Saugatuck. Click here for agendas and details.

Details on the January 17 public hearing have not yet been released. It will be livestreamed at  www.westportct.gov, and aired on Optimum channel 79 and Frontier channel 6020.

The shaded area includes the new text and map amendment boundaries.

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This year, Westport celebrates more than Martin Luther King Day.

It’s a full Martin Luther King weekend.

On Saturday (January 14), the Westport Library features several community events.

Junauda Petrus and local artists offer workshops in creative mediums, culminating in a panel discussion on justice, art and healing. They include:

11 a.m. to noon:  Writing Workshop with Shanna T. Melton, a poet, painter and art educator in Bridgeport. The author of “Unraveling My Thoughts” and founder of The Writer’s Group, she is also an arts consultant who integrates social justice and community engagement in her creative workshops, performances and events.

Noon to 1 p.m.: Self-Portrait Workshop with Alicia Cobb, a visual artist, fine body painter and teaching artist in Bridgeport. She honors her ancestors, and creates art for those who couldn’t. Breaking away from conventional canvas and concepts, Alicia creates stories of survival and beauty on human skin and through fine art.

1 to 2 p.m.: Art Workshop

2 to 3 p.m.:  Workshop with Junauda Petrus, a creative activist, writer, playwright and multi-dimensional performance artist. Born on Dakota land, West-Indian descended and African-sourced, her work centers around Black wildness, futurism, ancestral healing, sweetness, spectacle and shimmer.

3 to 4 p.m.: Justice, Art and Healing panel discussion with Junauda Petrus and guest artists; moderated by Connecticut poet laureate, author and artist Antoinette Brim-Bell,

Click here for more details about the free Library events, and registration.

On Sunday (January 15, 3 p.m.), Petrus will deliver a keynote address at the Westport Country Playhouse.

The program includes a dance performed by the Regional Center for the Arts.

Click here to register for the free Westport Country Playhouse event.

The Playhouse — partnering for the weekend with the Westport Library, TEAM Westport, Westport/Weston Interfaith Council, and Westport/Weston Interfaith Clergy, says:

“Together, we invite our entire community — those who live, work, study and participate in the life of Westport, Fairfield County, and adjacent counties — to join us as we begin the work needed to continue King’s call to action, as urgent now as it was in 1968.

“For members of a community such as Westport, that begins with a challenge to understand our place of comfort and the work we each, as individuals, need to do to transform ourselves and our society into a more equitable and just one.”

Westport’s 17th annual Martin Luther King Day celebration begins next Friday (January 13), with Petrus leading student workshops in various schools.

Junauda Petrus

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The Remarkable Bookcycle is enjoying its winter home on Main Street, outside Savvy + Grace.

It’s all good. Except: It needs books!

They can be dropped off in the Bookcycle itself, or with Annette Norton in her Savvy + Grace. (No yellowing softcovers, please.)

The back story: Jane Green — yes, that Jane Green — and her husband Ian Warburg created the Remarkable Bookcycle as a tribute to the beloved pink book shop — the Remarkable — that sat on the Main Street/Parker Harding Plaza corner for 34 years.

The Bookcycle is a free library that moves between Compo Beach and Main Street — reminding everyone, Jane says, “of the many charming idiosyncrasies, and the many creative people, that made us fall in love with Westport in the first place.”

Jane Green, and the Remarkable Bookcycle on Main Street.

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As contributions for Westport’s sister city of Lyman, Ukraine continue to come in — $4,500 over the past 2 days — our 3-week fundraising total stands at $246,300.

That’s just $3,700 of our $250,000 goal.

Meanwhile, Brian and Marshall Mayer — native Westporters, and our partners on the ground through the Ukraine Aid International organization they founded — are in Europe. They are sourcing material and goods to help Lyman, as it emerges from several months of Russian occupation.

Tax-deductible donations can be made to Lyman through Ukraine Aid International. Please click here. Click the “I want to support” box; then select “Support for the City of Lyman.” Scroll down on that page for other tax-deductible donation options (mail, wire transfer and Venmo). You can also donate directly, via Stripe (click here). 

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Food for thought: The Westport Library’s January 10 (7 p.m.) event.

Michel Nischan dishes on “Dinner Disrupted: The Power of Food.”

The Library says: “Food has the power to transform. From where it is grown through consumption, food transforms us along its journey from seed to plate. But what journey is your food taking? And is it reaching everybody? Do we all have access to healthy and nutritious foods?”

Nischan — former partner with Paul Newman in The Dressing Room restaurant; 4-time James Beard Award-winning chef; founder and president of Wholesome Crave, which sells responsibly sourced, plant-forward soups to large-scale dining facilities, and co-founder of Wholesome Wave, the nonprofit food equity organization — will talk about food access, food choice, and how to create a more equitable and sustainable food system.

Click here for more information.

Michel Nischan

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Yesterday’s Roundup mentioned a new store — Courtgirl — moving into 125 Main Street soon. They sell tennis and golf products in private clubs, pro shops and sports stores. This will be their first retail outlet.

Patti Brill — one of Westport’s 12 zillion pickleball players — wondered if “tennis products” included her sport.

The answer: Yes! Courtgirl will sell pickleball gear.

I don’t play. (I know, I know …). So I don’t know what “pickleball gear” is.

But I’m sure everyone else in Westport does.

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This year’s CT Challenge is July 29.

The bike tour that raises money for cancer survivors through 10, 25, 50, 75 and 100-mile rides through Connecticut (and virtually) draws dozens of Westport cyclists (and contributors).

Registration opens January 17. Click here for details.

And they’re off!

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A morning ritual for many Westport girls is getting together for coffee.

Here’s a “Westport … Naturally” ritual for many local gulls.

(Photo/Tammy Barry)

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And finally … today — January 6 — has joined December 7 as days that will live in infamy.

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26 responses to “Roundup: Saugatuck Zoning, MLK Day, Remarkable Bookcycle …

  1. Re: Saugatuck, the intersections of Bridge Street/Riverside Ave., and Wilton Rd/US1 MUST be upgraded before any new traffic generating development is added.

    Traffic often backs up 1/2 mile or more on Bridge St driving west, and on Wilton Rd in either direction. And that is despite the current hiatus in railroad traffic.

    Pretty soon, the only way to way to get someone to the hospital from this area will be by helicopter.

    I’ve never seen the town delay a development before until traffic bottlenecks are fixed, but maybe this will be a first?

  2. January 6th was horrific and embarrassing but please, do not compare it or elevate it to the magnitude or relevance of December 7th.

    • Sorry, Mark. One was an attack on our soil. The other was an attack on our democracy.

      • Eric William Buchroeder

        The comparison and implied equivalence is an insult Dan. I hope you will not delete this.

      • Sad Dan if u believe the Japanese attack wasn’t an attack on our democracy as well. Not to mention the tremendous loss of lives that it directly & indirectly caused Americans. Again, Jan 6 bad but Pearl Harbor much much worse.

        • I said that January 6, like December 7, is a date that will live in infamy. That’s all I said. If you don’t think January 6 will live in infamy, please explain why.

  3. On behalf of the SSZC, we are pleased that the RTM re-scheduled the first special RTM – P&Z meeting till 1/10/23. We know that many 100’s of our supporters and other concerned citizens were unable to login last night. Apparently, there is great public interest and questioning of the P&Z’s zoning “text amendment”, the precedent it sets, and it’s impact on ALL of Westport, forever.

  4. Hi Rick,

    Longtime no see. What is the SSZC?

  5. Michael McGorty

    Shame on you for that comparison – Insulting to the lives of over 2,400 soldiers that died defending this country so you can write your little bs biased blogs.

    Here’s some real facts Dan:

    2,403 Americans were killed in Pearl Harbor (January 7)
    1 Veteran shot and killed by capital police (January 6)

  6. “And finally … today — January 6 — has joined December 7 as days that will live in infamy.”

    Appropriate addition to our country’s days of infamy. A sneak attack on our ships at Pearl Harbor forcing the USA into WW II. An attack on our Congress by thousands of insurrectionists trying to overthrow our government, hang our Vice President, prevent the peaceful transfer of the presidency.

    Dan- thank you for the sad and frightening reminder of how close we came to having our democracy and our votes throw in the garbage by a President who could not accept defeat.

  7. Eric William Buchroeder SHS ‘70

    Equating Pearl Harbor, an “unprovoked and dastardly attack” (President Roosevelt’s term) with the attack/riot/insurrection at the Capitol is a patently false equivalency and evidences a biased perspective and casual approach to the truth that increasingly shows itself as “06880: Where Westport Meets The World.” A more accurate perspective would be to compare the Capitol riots/insurrection to the riots/defund the police events and attendant anarchy following various criminally negligent law enforcement activities occurring around the country.

  8. There is no false equivalency in days of infamy! If you say 9/11, December seventh or January 6th – they are all cringe worthy and unforgettable dates. The pictures of the destruction of our ships in Hawaii, the destruction of the twin towers in New York the attempted overthrow of government at our capital in DC all deserve to be called days of infamy! No comparisons as to which was worse needed!! Comparison on equivalency are strictly in the eye of the beholder. And has nothing to do with Dan’s post.

    A day of infamy is a day of infamy. What would you want it to be called- a love fest?

  9. Forgot to add- this is called false shaming!

  10. Eric William Buchroeder SHS ‘70

    As the trite contemporary saying goes: “Way too much to unpack here” Steve. I’ll be charitable and note that you are obviously intelligent enough to understand the fundamental differences and incompatibilities between the two events. The comparison was insensitive and inappropriate and since Dan was the one originally making it, I’m trusting it was also unintended. There is no intelligent, logical or moral basis to defend it unless you are seeking to prevail in a false premise.

  11. Hi Eric- I would think what is deserving to be called a dsy of infamy is “in the eye of the beholder” and has nothing to do with intelligence or devotion to our country. If you don’t think January 6th is a “day of infamy” that is your choice. Allow me my choice- it was a terrible day for our country that I hope will never happen again just like other days of infamy that will remain in our memories as long as we live.

  12. Eric William Buchroeder SHS ‘70

    Hi Steve, I, like most other people was disgusted with the infamous day of 1/6. I’ve just grown weary of hyperbole, that’s all.
    Be well. And choose well 😇

  13. Jan. 6 2020, Dec. 7, 1941, Sept. 11, 2001. All were horrific historical events that should never be forgotten. More people, mostly servicemen died on Dec.7, than in the other events. The horror of how people died on Sept 11, cannot be downplayed. Only a few people died on Jan. 6, however it was still shocking, it was an attemps to overthrow our government, and from the chant of many, it could easily have turned very violent (hang Mike Pence, Pelosi). I don’t see how calling it “a day of infamy” takes away from the 2 days of infamy.

  14. Eric William Buchroeder SHS ‘70

    Oh what the heck, why stop at Pearl Harbor. Let’s add the Holocaust, Wounded Knee, the Bataan Death March and the Rape of Nanking to the list.

  15. Steve Stein TRHS58 CC62 AECOM66 FACR15

    Hi Eric and so soon!
    This post was about a day that will live in infamy! You can add anything to that list that you care to add. But to most Americans when you mention December 7th, 9/11 or January 6th they immediately and overwhelmingly recognize what terrible thing happened that we would all hope will never happen again. Each is a day of infamy.

    The Holocaust is infamous, stretching out over at least a decade- a Decade of Infamy the Bataan Death March would be a week of infamy. Etc etc etc.

    Please keep to days of infamy until such time that Dan comments on weeks, months or years of infamy

  16. Eric William Buchroeder SHS ‘70

    Hi Steve,
    Since I only have Staples ‘70 to brag about I’ll trade you three days of infamy and throw in a sit in on the RSC memorial bridge for just one itty bitty tile on the Wall of Remembrance. Oh BTW, can you update me on that offline? (I promised Dan I wouldn’t bug him about it any more).

    • Hi Eric- I never accused you of bragging about SHS70. Just leveling the playing field. I do have SHS83 SHS86 SHS89 SHS92 and SHS98 who educated me.

      Truthfully for me it was an unfair poke at Dan about my personal days of infamy that drew me into a conversation that has gone on too long.

      I prefer submitting to Dan’s Saturday art section.

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