Category Archives: Beach

Just Another Spectacular Sunday

Sure, it was hot today.

It’s summer. What do you expect?

(Well, we did not expect a “heat dome,” probably because we’ve never heard of it before. It’s probably an invention of the Weather Channel, just like winter storms with names like Juno and Xerxes.)

Here’s what Compo Beach looked like at various times today.

Enjoy — and bookmark this page, so you can enjoy it again in January. And February. And March…

Sunrise at the beach. (Photo/Dayle Brownstein)

Sunrise at the beach. (Photo/Dayle Brownstein)

It wasn't too hot for this egret. (Photo/Amy Schneider)

It wasn’t too hot for this egret… (Photo/Amy Schneider)

...ditto for these guys. (Photo/Dan Woog)

…or for these guys. (Photo/Dan Woog)

The marina was active today -- but also quite serene. (Photo/Dan Woog)

The marina was active today — but also very serene. (Photo/Dan Woog)

Life is good, as the sun sets. (Photo/Dan Woog)

Life is good, as the sun sets. (Photo/Dan Woog)

Droning Over Compo

David Pogue lost his drone.

Brandon Malin still has his. The other day, he took it to Compo Beach.

His photos  — 2 long-range views of Westport’s iconic shore — are spectacular. So is his tighter shot of South Beach.

This weekend will be hot — mid-90s — and clear. It’s perfect beach weather.

Whether you’re headed to Compo or wish you lived close enough to Westport to go, enjoy Brandon’s photos.

Compo Beach drone 2 - July 2016 - Brandon Malin

Compo Beach drone - July 2016 - Brandon Malin

Click on or hover over photos to enlarge.

Click on or hover over photos to enlarge.

Fun fact: Brandon is a rising 8th grader at Coleytown Middle School. “06880” will joyfully run his drone shots for years to come.

 

A Police Story

The time: An hour or so ago.

The place: Compo Beach.

The situation: A woman zoomed past the entrance gate, pulled into a spot near the pavilion, and began yelling incoherently.

The police arrived. She was clearly emotionally disturbed. In fact, she said she had not taken her medications.

Two officers talked to her. She rolled up the window. She refused to get out of her car.

Another officer arrived. Calmly, patiently, firmly — yet with compassion, empathy, care and plenty of professionalism — they continued talking.

Police encounter - July 22, 2016

They asked about her family. They asked about her home. They asked about her meds.

Eventually, she calmed down. After many more minutes, they got her into an ambulance, headed for help.

I am sure the Westport police see similar situations like this, many times a week.

Westporters like us seldom do.

At a time when police-civilian relationships are rocky, in many places around the country, it’s nice to see an encounter like this.

It probably was not remarkable to the officers in charge. It may have been all in a day’s work.

But it opened my eyes wide to the job our Westport cops do, every day.

And do so well.

Pictures From A Party

If you were among the 100 or so folks who made it to Compo for yesterday evening’s 4th annual “06880” blog party: thanks!

It was a wonderful evening: fun, relaxed, beautiful, filled with very cool people, very good food, and very great weather.

If you could not join us, here’s the next best thing.

PS: We hope to see you there next year!

Bart Shuldman brought a pair of dueling beverages: Trump Tonic ("Make America grape again") and Hillary Hooch ("classified flavor").

Bart Shuldman brought a pair of dueling beverages: Trump Tonic (“Make America grape again”) and Hillary Hooch (“classified flavor”).

"06880" party-goers had the best tables, the best views -- and the best time -- at Compo last night.

“06880” party-goers had the best tables, the best views — and the best time — at Compo last night.

Musician Warren Bloom (harmonica, guitar) and artist Miggs Burroughs (painting, photography, graphic design) compared their awesome heads of hair.

Musician Warren Bloom (harmonica, guitar) and artist Miggs Burroughs (painting, photography, graphic design) compared their awesome heads of hair.

Honoring the party with "06880" hats -- well, 3 of the 4, anyway.

Honoring the party with “06880” hats — well, 3 of the 4, anyway.

State Representative Gail Lavielle was in the house. (Get it?)

State Representative Gail Lavielle was in the house. (Get it?)

Happy together.

Happy together.

Longtime Compo lover Mike Calise enjoys the beach, just the way it is.

Longtime Compo lover Mike Calise enjoys the beach, just the way it is.

A breeze played havoc with the balloons, provided by Jennifer Hershey and Mary Hoffman. But the sunset was as spectacular as always.

A breeze played havoc with the “06880” balloons, provided by Jennifer Hershey and Mary Hoffman. But the sunset was as spectacular as always.

“06880” Party: Need A Ride? Share A Ride!

Several readers would love to come to Thursday night’s “06880” party. But they don’t have beach stickers. (And, as much as they like a good time, they’ve decided it’s not worth the daily parking fee. Can’t say I blame ’em.)

Uber would be a good alternative — except their cars probably don’t have stickers either.

Well, every problem has a solution.* Here’s ours:

  • If you need a ride, email me: dwoog@optonline.net. Tell me where you’re coming from (geographically, not metaphysically).
  • If you can offer a ride, email me: dwoog@optonline.net. Tell me your approximate pick-up range.

I’ll do my best to connect riders and drivers — privately, of course. No guarantees, but it’s just one more way in which “06880” is “where Westport meets the world.”

*Except in the US Congress.

Another way to get to the "06880" party.

Oh My 06880 — Photo Challenge #81

Everyone knows the Black Duck. A lot of people know Pete Aitkin, who owns it.

Some people know he grew up in Westport: In the very cool house that straddles the raceway between Old Mill Beach and the Sherwood Mill Pond.

Fewer people know there are 2 plaques near the house, honoring Pete’s parents, King and Kathleen Aitkin.

Only Chris Swan, Rick Benson and Leigh Gage answered last week’s photo challenge correctly. But several readers — including Pete’s sister, Melissa Aitkin Beers — added interesting info on the couple, and their house. Click here to see Jaime Bairaktaris’ photo, and all the comments.

The subject of this week’s challenge did not grow up anywhere. But if you know where in Westport he is — and have any back stories about him — click “Comments” below.

Oh My 06880 - July 17, 2016

“06880” Party Just 1 Week Away!

The 4th annual “06880″ party is less than a week away.

And if you’re reading this, you’re invited.

Next Thursday (July 21, 6 p.m.) is the day and time. The far end of Compo’s South Beach — away from the cannons, near the boat and kayak launch, the best place to watch the sunset — is the place. (Still confused? See the aerial view below.)

The blue arrow marks the "06880" party spot.

The blue arrow marks the “06880” party spot.

Every member of the “06880″ (as in, this website) community is invited. We welcome frequent commenters and lurkers. Folks who have lived here all their lives, and those who moved here yesterday. People who want the Saugatuck bridge to stay the same, those who want a new one, and everyone in between. (Though we’ll keep the party a politics-free zone.)

The tagline for “06880″ is “Where Westport meets the world.” Next Thursday, that world comes to Compo.

Rick Eason's drone's-eye view of the 2014 party. Too bad he took it so early -- plenty more folks arrived after this shot!

Rick Eason’s drone’s-eye view of the 2014 party. Too bad he took it so early — plenty more folks arrived after this shot!

Bring your own food, beverages, beach chairs and blankets. Then mix, mingle and enjoy the evening with the “06880″ crowd.

There’s no charge. It’s a “fun-raiser,” not a fundraiser.

See you next Thursday!

Beached!

Once a day, every day — as regularly as the tides — Old Mill Beach-goers and Hillspoint Road drivers, joggers and strollers are treated to the same sight:

(Photo/Lynn Flaster)

(Photo/Lynn Flaster)

There must be a story behind the boat and its owners.

Clueless? Too lazy to get an actual mooring? Just happy going out for a quick spin when the tide is high?

If you know the back story, click “Comments” below.

In the meantime, we know one thing: At least half of each day, no one will steal this boat.

Chamber Project Sells Westport To Sherwood Island Visitors

Sherwood Island — Connecticut’s 1st state park — covers 234 acres of Westport’s finest beaches, wetlands and woodlands.

But — except for some very dedicated Friends of Sherwood Island members, and a few folks who make it their own special playground — it might as well be in Westport, Massachusetts. Or Westport, New Zealand.

The isolation cuts both ways. I bet the only bit of Westport that 99% of all visitors know is the brief stretch of the Connector that gets them to and from I-95. The other 1% are people who miss the ramp, and end up mistakenly on the Post Road.

Sherwood Island State Park -- right here in Westport.

Sherwood Island State Park — right here in Westport.

If Matthew Mandell has his way, that will change.

As executive director of the Westport Weston Chamber of Commerce, he’s all about promoting local businesses. He sees 500,000 people get off I-95 each year, with the sole aim of visiting Sherwood Island.

But how to get those potential customers to see Westport?

This week, 40,000 copies of a handsome brochure will be delivered to Sherwood Island. The tri-fold includes a brief history of the park; a detailed map, showing fishing and model aircraft areas; the Nature Center and 9/11 Memorial, bathrooms and more. QR codes take users to a map of Westport, and the Chamber’s restaurant and visitor guides. Park-goers will see there’s far more here than just a highway interchange.

A detailed map forms the centerfold of the brochure.

A detailed map forms the centerfold of the brochure.

The brochures — produced in conjunction with Friends group — will be distributed free. Ads — from Earthplace, realtors, a college counselor, bank and McDonald’s (“only 2 miles from the beach!”) — cover the cost.

Sherwood Island brochure - front and back

Westport Downtown Merchants Association president Randy Herbertson did the graphics gratis.

Connecticut’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection loves the concept. Now they want other communities with state parks to produce their own maps.

It’s a win-win: great for local merchants, and for visitors looking to do more than just drive in and out.

Who knows? If it’s successful, maybe the Chamber can do another map next year — for all the out-of-towners who have discovered Compo Beach.

Dining Al Fresco At Sherwood Mill Pond

Alert “06880” reader/photographer/nature lover Seth Schachter was strolling along the Sherwood Mill this morning.

He spotted an egret in the raceway at Compo Cove. The handsome bird was looking for fish coming off high tide, as they swept through the gates.

Egret 1

Seth’s patience was rewarded.

Egret 2

So was the egret’s, as these photos show.

(Photos/Seth Schachter)

(Photos/Seth Schachter)