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Lindsay Dry: Peace, Love And Posters

Lindsay Dry was born more than 30 years after Woodstock.

Lindsay Dry

But she sure gets the “peace, love and happiness” vibe that (kind of) filled Max Yasgur’s farm that historic August weekend in 1969.

So when Lindsay — a Staples High School senior in Carla Eichler’s graphic design class — heard about a “Peace, Love and Posters” national contest commemorating the original bird-on-guitar logo (“and visually expressing values of kindness, community and aspirations for the next 50 years”), she went to work.

And what a work she created! Lindsay won 1st place — and $500 — in the 18-and-under category.

Lindsay Dry’s award-winning poster …

The other day, she was honored at a ceremony by the sponsor, Bethel Woods Center for the Arts. The 800-acre campus — located on the actual Woodstock site — focuses on community and educational programming. The goal is to keep the issues and lessons of the ’60s alive, while inspiring a new generation to contribute positively to the world.

Far out!

… and the original.

World Record Duck Needs A House

Last month, Westport entered the record books.

Dozens of Maker Faire-goers joined in a globally crowd-sourced art and tech project. They created the world’s largest 3D printed duck.

Now they’re figuring out what to do with it.

The world record bird will appear at the Great Duck Race this Saturday (June 1, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Parker Harding Plaza). He/she/it will cheer on much smaller plastic ducks, as they bob along the Saugatuck River.

But then what?

Maker Faire maestro Mark Mathias has put out an APB/SOS. The duck needs a home.

It must be indoors — in a place at least 6 feet tall. (Or 8 feet, if you want to keep the top hat.) Add another 5 inches, if you hang onto the wooden platform too.

Mathias’ best hope is that it go to someone who can display it for others. Wherever that is, it must stay there. Unlike actual ducks, this was not designed to move much.

It could promote something: creativity, art, even a business, Mathias suggests.

He hopes to deliver it to its new home immediately after the Duck Race. The person who loaned the trailer needs it back STAT.

If you’d like the world record duck, contact Mathias ASAP: mark@remarkablesteam.org; 203-226-1791.

Yours for the taking!

Elvira’s Is Closed. Opening Soon: Elvira Mae’s.

Betsy and Hal Kravitz sat outside Elvira’s yesterday.

The deli/market/community center on Hillspoint Road by Old Mill Beach has been closed since winter.

A steady stream of people — all ages, on foot and bike — stopped to peer in the dark window. No one — not even nearby neighbors — knew what lay ahead.

Betsy and Hal told them.

They’re the new owners. On Thursday, they closed on the property.

They’ve already begun renovating and remodeling. Soon — to the delight of everyone in the area, and countless other walkers, joggers, bicyclists, motorcyclists, tradesmen and everyone else passing by — Betsy will reopen it.

The new store will be great. So is the back story leading up to it.

Hal and Betsy Kravitz, at Elvira’s.

Hal is a Stamford native. He retired after a career with Coca-Cola and related companies, focusing on bottled water.

Betsy was born and raised in Buffalo. She spent most of her adult life in California, working on music for TV networks.

While in Atlanta to help start the Food and Wine Festival, she met Hal. Several years ago, they got married.

Life in Malibu was good. But they came back East in October, to be near ailing parents.

Neither of them knew Westport. When a realtor brought them here, they loved the “artsy, fun” vibe — and the water. “It was as close to the Malibu lifestyle as you can get,” Hal says.

They were also intrigued by Elvira’s. The realtor stopped there with Betsy, for lunch. Soon, she and Hal bought a house near Compo Beach.

Elvira’s, where Betsy had her first meal in Westport.

With 4 dogs, Betsy thought about running a doggy day care center. They explored other business options.

Then, on March 11 — Betsy’s birthday — they heard Elvira’s was for sale.

“We wanted to put down roots in Westport,” she says. “Buying it, and keeping it open, seemed a great way to be part of the neighborhood. Even though we were new to the community, we heard rumors it might be sold to a builder and become a house. We didn’t want that.”

Niki Boulas — part of the Yiovanakos family that owns it — was “fantastic,” Betsy says. She let the Kravitzes begin renovating even before the sale was final.

“They know the importance of summer,” Betsy says. “They want us to open as soon as we can.”

But because the transaction had not gone through, neither she, Hal nor Niki’s family could answer the many questions about the future of Elvira’s.

Balloons will soon be seen again at Elvira’s.

Now they can.

Yesterday, Betsy told “06880” — and that steady stream of hopeful customers — that she’s adding a window in front. She’ll serve ice cream — and food to go — there from 4 p.m. on.

The store itself will open at 7 a.m., and stay open till 4. Betsy is adding specialty coffee from BonJo in Stamford, more baked goods, healthy options — and bulk candy.

Luis Romero — the popular chef — will return full-time. The menu will be less extensive than Elvira’s. The pizza oven is gone.

But she’ll still sell ice — and the very popular bacon-egg-and-cheese breakfast sandwich.

She’ll still keep house accounts — though not with the current ledger. Betsy will use a smartphone app (and a gift card option for younger kids without cellphones).

She’ll also still sell newspapers. Someone asked for tidal charts. And — on Niki’s advice — she’ll mount all those kids’ school photos (currently under glass at the counter) on the walls. “She told me they always come back and want to see them,” Betsy says.

With those 4 dogs, Betsy is canine-friendly. She’ll welcome them with water and treats.

The floors are new. There’s fresh paint inside and out. The shelves in the middle are gone.

Before Elvira’s, the store at the foot of Compo Hill was owned by Ken Montgomery.

Betsy knows that Elvira’s regulars will be pleased it’s reopening. But she also knows she’s replacing a deli that was a 2-decade-old icon.

“We’re the new people here,” she says. “Everyone will tell us what went on before.”

She gives huge props to Niki, and Stacey and Nick Yiovanakos, for their help with the transition.

“They had great ideas for this place, and we do too. It’s like 1 plus 1 equals 3,” Betsy says.

Niki echoes the kind words.

“After 22 years, this is bittersweet for us. We’re happy for my parents’ retirement, and for us others moving on.

“It’s been nothing but our pleasure to serve the community. We will genuinely miss it. We take with us fond memories, and value the family relationships we built.

“We’re more than joyful that it will continue. Betsy and Hal are wonderful people. We want you to welcome them with open arms. Thank you to them, and everyone!”

Niki Boulas and her mother Stacey Yiovanakos. The counter displays photos of some of Elvira’s many young customers.

Betsy’s middle name is Mae. She thought about calling her new place Betsy Mae’s.

But when Niki said that Elvira’s was named for her mother Stacey’s sister — who died of cancer at 38, just before the deli — she realized the importance of keeping the name.

So — hopefully in mid-June, but definitely by July 4 — Elvira’s will open again.

As “Elvira Mae’s.”

“It’s a way to keep the old, and add the new,” Betsy says.

Just like the tides whose charts she’ll stock, Elvira Mae’s will be always moving, and also timeless.

Sophia Hampton Skins Chicken Breasts

It’s a coup for any writer to be published in Bon Appétit. Every month, over 1.5 million readers eat up the excellent photos and mouth-watering photos in the food and entertainment magazine.

It’s especially impressive for a writer who has not yet graduated from college.

But that’s what Sophia Hampton did this month.

Her piece — “The More Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts I Sell, the Worse I Feel” — explored her feelings as a butcher at New York’s Hudson & Charles, about the “shapeless blobs (that) are a staple of the American diet.”

Besides working as a whole animal butcher and writer, Sophia is a New York-based farmer. She also graduates — today! — from New York University, where she studied the relationship between healthy soil and healthy people.

And — explaining the connection between chicken breasts, 10003 and 06880 — she is a graduate of Staples High School’s Class of 2015.

Sophia Hampton, naturally.

“Sophia was an extraordinary student of mine, a tremendously dedicated volunteer with the Gillespie Center food program, and a very active participant in our Culinary Arts Club,” says Staples culinary instructor Cecily Gans.

“She had infectious curiosity and enthusiasm about every aspect of the kitchen, and always challenged herself to create something incredible, in taste and aesthetic.”

Sophia interned at prestigious Blue Hill at Stone Barns in Pocantico Hills during college.

Earlier at Staples, Gans notes, she found internships and worked in all aspects of the industry.

“Sophia was intrigued by where our food comes from, from the earth it was grown in, to the fire that it was cooked over, before it finds its plate. My college recommendation for her practically wrote itself.

Sophia Hampton — a whole animal butcher — spends time learning about all the animals she works with.

“She had always talked about a professional ‘mash-up’ (before the term even existed) of her passion for all things culinary, with writing, journalism, and the politics and science of food.

“That’s all coming to fruition now. I know this article is just the beginning of what we hear and see from her. ”

Kim Herzog taught Sophia in AP Literature. She calls her “fantastic — as a reader, writer, speaker, listener and critical thinker.

“Being published in Bon Appétit while still in college is a tremendously big deal. It is the highest echelon in the food world, and publishes the strongest voices in the field.”

Herzog says that Sophia’s piece as a “powerful, researched argument filled with her voice – one that I believe will continue to progress in the food world.”

Bon appétit indeed!

(To read Sophia Hampton’s full story, click here.)

While at Staples High School, Sophia Hampton volunteered to serve food at the Gillespie Center.

Interacting With Rotary: 5K Road Race Adds To Duck Festivities

Westport’s 2 Rotary Clubs — Sunrise and mid-day — are among Westport’s most active organizations.

Each meets weekly. Members socialize, exchange news, then get down to the very important, hands-on business of improving their community, county, country and world.

Unfortunately, weekday meetings at 7:30 a.m. and noon mean that high school students — the future of volunteerism — can’t participate.

Every problem has a solution. Rotary International sponsors RYLA — Rotary Youth Leadership Awards — as a way of providing leadership opportunities to young people. And, of course, introducing them to Rotary.

Federica Nagar

Federica Nagar is part of that program. Now, the Staples junior is using that experience to bring Interact back to Staples.

That’s the club that “interacts” with the two Rotarys. She’s working with Sunrise president Eileen Lavigne Flug, Rotarian Jeff Cohen and youth program director Justin Phillips to launch Interact this fall.

But before it’s official, she’s already embarked on his first project.

The Duck Race 5K is part of Sunrise Rotary’s annual Great Duck Race. So in addition to the annual event — Saturday, June 1, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Parker Harding Plaza, with tons of activities centered around watching plastic ducks flow down the Saugatuck River — there’s an actual road race for human beings.

Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. that day, at the Imperial Avenue commuter parking lot next to the Westport Woman’s Club. The 5K race kicks off at 9 a.m.

All registration fees and other funds raised will support End Polio Now. Since being formed by Rotary Organization, they’ve helped eradicate over 99% of polio worldwide.

There are many ways to interact with good causes in Westport. It’s great to announce one more.

(For more information on the Great Duck Race 5K, click here. For tickets to the Great Duck Race itself, click here.) 

 

The Home Cook Really Delivers

Stephanie Berghoff was a hospitality major at Syracuse University. She took cooking classes after graduation in New York, then co-founded Culintro — a “LinkedIn for restaurant professionals.”

When she and her husband moved from Manhattan to Westport 3 years ago for the usual reasons — schools, and more room for their growing family — she continued her “chef head-hunting” business.

Last summer, she realized that her young children were not eating most of the delicious food she cooked for them.

So Stephanie decided to cook for others.

And deliver her food right to them.

She’s found a thriving market. The Home Cook has hit Westport’s sweet spot.

Stephanie Berghoff shops locally.

Every Wednesday, Stephanie sends menus to her email list. Customers order — sometimes every time, sometimes occasionally. The deadline is 10 a.m. Saturday.

She shops for supplies at Whole Foods and Stew Leonard’s (where, she says, organic meats are “really good,” fish is always fresh, and the dairy selection is great). Vegetables are procured locally.

Working out of a certified kitchen in a Weston church, Stephanie cooks 4 days a week. She does most of it herself; a local chef helps out once weekly.

She (and one assistant) deliver the meals — entrees and sides — Mondays and Wednesdays between 3 and 6 p.m., directly to customers’ homes. Stephanie follows up by email, with heating instructions.

In the beginning, Stephanie offered 4 basic options: beef, chicken, fish and grain-based meals.

Now there are more. She tries for 3 dishes that entire families can enjoy, and 2 that are “a bit more sophisticated.” Those may be for adults only — or foods that parents can introduce their kids to.

Greek-style chicken came with couscous and Greek salad. Another option: cauliflower couscous.

A recent Monday included:

  • Honey soy chicken poke bowl, served with charred bok choy and a choice of sushi rice or broccoli rice
  • Shrimp and crab or fish cakes, served with steamed artichokes and twice baked potatoes or roasted garlic Parmesan cauliflower
  • BBQ grilled chicken breasts, served with a spring salad asparagus and peas, plus corn bread (options: honey butter grilled corn and steamed broccoli)
  • Italian beef meatballs in a homemade tomato sauce, linguine or spaghetti squash, Caprese salad and sauteed kale.

All are healthy, using organic products whenever possible. She always offers no-carb and gluten-free options.

Favorites are Italian cuisine: chicken Parmesan, Marsala, Piccata and Scarpariello. Her pesto and chili dishes draw raves too.

Stephanie has had only had one or two busts. She thought meat loaf or shepherd’s pie would be great winter comfort food, but they did not prove popular.

This summer, Stephanie plans to add fully prepared barbecue packages.

Most dishes are freezable. Some customers order multiple meals, for later in the week.

Stephanie Berghoff’s gluten-free zucchini noodle mac and cheese.

Stephanie loves to read food magazines. They often provide new meal ideas.

Clients include working parents who want home-cooked meals for themselves and their family; stay-at-home parents with little time to cook; people who travel frequently, and those with family emergencies.

Proudly, she says, “I’ve never had a customer not come back.”

Besides cooking, time management is one of Stephanie’s talents. She has only a couple of hours after dropping her kids at school to cook, organize each individual order (with separate sides), and deliver them on time.

“If you’ve got young kids and count on this for dinner, it can’t be late,” she notes.

The Home Cook knows that everyone loves home cooking. She also knows that sometimes, people take credit for home cooking when they haven’t, well, cooked at home.

That’s fine.

“The biggest compliment is when people take credit for my meal,” she says.

“When kids say, ‘Mom, cook that again’ — I love it! That’s my goal.

“Home-cooked meals come from the heart. I want everyone to take pride in my food.”

(For more information on The Home Cook — including ordering and getting on her email list — click here.)

Julie Blitzer Deals With Grief

When Karen’s* mother died suddenly last year, the Westporter was shattered.

“She was 72,” Karen says. “That’s not old. She visited just 2 weeks earlier. We were so close. She was my best friend, my confidante, my cheerleader. I had amazing pain in my heart.”

Her friends offered condolences. But, Karen says, “nobody really talks about death or loss.”

Well, almost nobody. Julie Blitzer does.

Julie Blitzer

She’s been trained by the Grief Recovery Institute to help people cope with loss (not just death — we can mourn the end of a marriage or even a job too).

“Our culture knows really well how to acquire things and relationships,” Julie notes. “But we aren’t equipped to deal with losing them.”

The Grief Recovery Method differs from traditional therapy because it occurs over a finite period. Group sessions take place for 8 weeks; individual meetings, for 7.

Each session is very guided. Blitzer helps clients focus on one specific topic or homework assignment each week. She assigns a short reading, and often requires some writing, to help each person “complete their relationship to the pain of their grief.”

Blitzer says she holds her clients “accountable, lovingly,” for their work. Time alone will not ease the pain of a loss, she notes. “One must do something within the time they are grieving if they expect the pain to weaken.”

Karen was skeptical about a group meeting. However, because she already knew Blitzer — their husbands are friends — she agreed to try.

The group consisted of one other member. The readings and written assignments were helpful. “I realized I wasn’t the only person dealing with this,” Karen says.

She took the homework seriously. “I spent all week preparing for a session,” she says. “I really wanted to understand myself, and my relationship with my mom, better.”

Some of the material used in the Grief Recovery Method.

She hoped that after 8 weeks, her heart would feel lighter. After the final meeting — when she wrote a “completion letter” to her mother, and said goodbye to her — Karen did feel good.

However, a couple of weeks later she felt even more depressed than before. “I put so much time and effort into this!” she thought in despair.

But, she realizes, “like everything in life, there is no perfect answer. I expected to feel wonderful. That was wrong.

“I definitely learned more about myself than I’d ever known. I’m grateful for that.”

Today Karen has a clearer picture of her mother, and their relationship.

“After I lost her, I only thought of the good times,” the daughter says. “She was like a goddess to me.

“Now I realize she wasn’t perfect. Our relationship wasn’t perfect. My mother had flaws.

“But I can see that through the good and bad times, we pushed through together. I reflected on the mistakes she made, and I’m thinking about how I am, as a parent.”

Karen says that although the Grief Recovery Method sessions were difficult — and the heart-lifting moment she hoped for did not come — she is grateful for the process.

Blitzer understands. “This method equips people with a simple set of tools they can use to process future losses,” she says.

Loss and grief are parts of life. Her job is to help people help themselves through it.

(For more information on the Grief Recovery Method, click here. To contact Julie Blitzer, email blitzer.julie@gmail.com)

*Karen is not her real name. She requested anonymity to speak about this very personal issue.

Town Bans Restaurant Plastic; RTM Rep Offers Thanks

Last night, the RTM voted unanimously to ban single-use plastic cups, straws, stirrers and Styrofoam materials used in food services. 

Westport is believed to be the first municipality on the East Coast with such a ban. More than 10 years ago, we were the first one east of the Mississippi River to enact a plastic bag ban. (Click here for a full report on last night’s action from WestportNow.)

The ordinance was championed by RTM representative Andrew Colabella. Today, he sent this report to “06880”:

Once again, the Minuteman town is monumental in not only tackling, but leading, on a global issue: plastics.

There is plastic everywhere. Meat wrapped in Saran Wrap is placed on Styrofoam. What happened to cut and wrapped in paper? Single use plastic cups — what about paper, cardboard, glass, metal?

Single use to-go containers. What happened to Fold-Pak containers that could be easily disposed of and recycled? What happened to all these products that if disposed of properly, would biodegrade and have little to no adverse effect on the environment? I have no answer.

Plastic straws are everywhere.

While we were sleeping, trucks delivered goods to establishments in plastic packaging one day and we didn’t take notice. If we did, we made a comment about the amount of plastic, and went on with our day.

Our habits have become dangerous. For one week, I saved every piece of plastic that I used from food containers to bottles, even wrappers.

Anxiety settled in. This toxic product that I have become so dependent on had given corporations and manufacturers the upper hand, and control of the leash.

Now we consumers are taking back control. Towns and cities reduce, reuse and refuse.

As some may know, a number of Asian countries once purchased our plastics. That has stopped. They are stockpiled and making their way into rivers, tributaries and oceans. They create large garbage whirlpools, killing the animals we co-exist with.

Coleytown Elementary School’s 5th grade workshop class urged the RTM to enact a Styrofoam ban.

Last night, historically, with the support of co-sponsors, including Senator Will Haskell, Senator Tony Huang, Representative Jonathan Steinberg, Sustainable Westport, Plastic Pollution Project “P3” (Wendy Batteau, Greg Naughton, Liz Milwe and Ashley Moran), selectmen Jim Marpe, Jen Tooker and Melissa Kane,  students from across the school district, Alicia Mozian of Conservation Commission, and former RTM members who passed the plastic bag ban 10 years ago, we led the East Coast in banning single use plastics.

It was a tremendous challenge, but rewarding and fun. I made my way through food establishments over the past year, working with individuals like Mark and Lois Backon and Tommy Febbraio of Pearl at Longshore, David Griswold (Mystic Market), Steve Carpentieri (Dunville’s), Matt Storch (March Burger Lobster), Kevin Conte (Parker Mansion), the Mioli brothers (Westport Pizzeria), and many more.

But passing the ordinance is just one step. My next step is to continue visiting establishments and working with our merchants to find alternatives, save and cut costs, reducing and refusing policy, and enticing the public to shop local and preserve Westport.

Andrew Colabella (left) posed with fellow environmental activists after last night’s RTM vote. From left: Alicia Mozian, Samantha Henske, Ashley Moran, Tony McDowell, Liz Milwe, Pippa Bell Ader, Jack Egan.

To my co-sponsors –Ellen Lautenberg, Nicole Klein,, Cathy Talmadge, Carla Rea, Louis Mall, Lois Schine, Wendy Batteau, Mark Friedman, Kristan Hamlin, Catherine Calise Jack Klinge and Jeff Wieser — thank you for supporting and believing in me.

To the Ordinance Committee — Brandi Briggs, Lauren Karpf, Peter Gold, Kristen Schneeman. Christine Meiers Schatz and Lee Arthurs — thank you for professionalism and time to take your intelligence and legal expertise to help craft and edit the ordinance.

To the other RTM representatives who voted in favor of this: You made this possible.

I also thank Ashley Moran for inviting me into her classroom to speak to her students, and observe the school compost.

Also Liz Milwe, for inviting me into her home and helping, working, teaching and being a mom figure outside of my home.

Finally, to my family who stayed up late at night to watch history being made. Love to my mom, dad, sister and Roxy.

It takes a village to clean a village. But it takes a town to lead the rest of the world.

Step one completed!

Friday Flashback #140

As the Westport Country Playhouse opens its 89th season, “06880” shines a spotlight on its famed posters.

For decades, they hung on the walls of its cramped lobby. After the renovation more than a decade ago, a few dozen found spots in the new lobby. All told, there are 400 in posters in the Playhouse collection.

Pat Blaufuss sent along a sampling. Each has a story behind it. Text comes from An American Theatre: The Story of Westport Country Playhouse by Richard Somerset-Ward.

It was 1940 and the Playhouse was doing Green Grow the Lilacs. John Ford had agreed to direct the show but was detained by film commitments, and never showed up (though his name was on the poster). Actual direction was handled by John Haggott who followed ideas he and Ford put together earlier in Hollywood.

Teresa Helburn, a Theatre Guild colleague of Lawrence Langner, Playhouse founder, came backstage on opening night and said: “This play would make a good musical.” They invited Fairfield resident Richard Rodgers. He was inspired to turn the play into the musical Oklahoma! with Oscar Hammerstein.

In 1941 Tyrone Power was the crown prince of Hollywood, dashingly handsome, married to a beautiful French woman named Annabella.

Tyrone was born in Connecticut; his earliest acting jobs had been in summer stock in Massachusetts. He was immersed in film roles, under contract to 20th Century Fox, but longed to get back to the stage. He couldn’t take extended runs because of his movie contract, but he might find time to do summer stock.

Darryl Zanuck, his boss, thwarted his first attempts, but in 1941 Tyrone and Annabella successfully escaped to Westport to star in Liliom, which became the source for the musical Carousel. It was directed by Lee Strasberg.

Power said: “Here in Westport there’s nothing of the huge, inhuman machine atmosphere that dominates Hollywood.” On opening night the Powerses took a dozen-and-a-half curtain calls.

But there almost wasn’t an opening night. A few days before opening, Zanuck sent a cable demanding that Power fly back to Hollywood for urgent re-shoots on the film he had recently made with Betty Grable, A Yank in the RAF.

It seemed that Tyrone had no option – his contract made it clear that the studio owned him. But Playhouse lawyer J. Kenneth Bradley came up with an old Connecticut blue law which enabled the local authorities to prevent a person from leaving the state if he tried to do so before fulfilling a contract with a Connecticut business.

Zanuck was informed that Connecticut stood ready to enforce its law. He caved, and Power stayed for the sold-out run.

Olivia de Havilland, so popular from the film Gone with the Wind, was in the Playhouse production of What Every Woman Knows in 1946.

On the same day she opened the show, she got married to novelist and journalist Marcus Goodrich. The wedding ceremony took place at the Weston home of Playhouse founder Lawrence Langner.

Henry Fonda and daughter Jane both appeared on the Playhouse stage, though not at the same time. With a film career still in the future, Jane Fonda starred in No Concern of Mine in 1960. Her father appeared in The Virginian at the Playhouse in 1937 — the same year Jane was born.

In 1964, 18-year-old Liza Minnelli came to the Westport Country Playhouse to get her Equity card. She played The Girl in The Fantasticks, with Elliott Gould as her co-star. On opening night, in the words of the Playhouse’s 50th anniversary brochure, “the rather gawky teenage…received a standing ovation.”

In 1987, Weston playwright David Wiltse’s Doubles was a Playhouse attraction. His newest play will be featured at a Script in Hand reading next Monday (May 6).

Pic Of The Day #741

The Staples High School baseball team is 11-1 overall. They’re 8-0 in the FCIAC — the only unbeaten team in the league.

Yesterday, they had a great win over Brien McMahon. Here’s the scene after Drew Rogers’ walk-off hit scored Chad Knight in the bottom of the 7th inning.

(Photo/Gregory Vasil for The Ruden Report)

They — and fellow captain Harry  Azadian — were also stars on the legendary 2013 Westport team that reached the finals of the Little League World Series.

This is their senior year at Staples. Their goal is to make it another special one.

(Hat tip: Vince Kelly)