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Category Archives: Longshore
As the thermometer heads toward 95 — with plenty of that nice Westport humidity — it’s a good day to take note of some new signs around town.
Sure, we think there are too many. But a few new ones are well worth reading.
Last spring, Brandon Malin — a Coleytown Middle School 8th grader — spearheaded a drive to remind drivers not to leave children or pets in cars that quickly turn sweltering, even on mild days. He got the idea from similar signs in Fairfield parking lots.
With the help of the Staples High School art department — and the support of Westport Animal Shelter Advocates, First Selectman Jim Marpe and other town officials — he saw the project through to completion. (Brandon also raised money to produce the signs.)
They’re up now at Compo Beach and Longshore. Hopefully, downtown lots will be next.
The signs say: “If you love them, don’t leave them. Heat Kills!” Below that is the Police Department phone number to report a child or animal in a car, and the reminder: “One call can save a life.”
Heat like today’s makes all of us a bit fuzzy-headed.
Thanks to Brandon, we can focus a bit more clearly on the people and pets we love.
It’s one of the longest-running, most enjoyable, most visible — and yet least remarked upon and little noticed — events in Westport.
For more than half a century in early summer, our town has welcomed guests from the United Nations. It’s called jUNe Day — clever, no? — and the 2017 version takes place this coming Saturday (June 24).
Over 300 folks — ambassador types, embassy and headquarters workers, and their families — arrive at the train station. (Whether they come from a 1st or 3rd world nation, they’ve probably never seen anything quite like Metro-North.)
Having overcome that initial hurdle, they’re shuttled to Saugatuck Elementary School for a 10:30 a.m. welcome.
The UN is known for speechifying, but these are short. Then comes the real fun: a tennis tournament and golf at Longshore, tours of Earthplace, a visit to Wakeman Town Farm — you get the idea.
There’s a soccer match between a UN team and the Westport Knights men’s side. It’s not the World Cup, but some years tensions are nearly as high.
Many guests head straight to Compo, or the Longshore pool. They shop. They enjoy Westport.
Sometimes we forget what a day in “the country” can do. Many UN folks and their families don’t get many chances to leave New York. jUNe Day is an opportunity for them to do just that — and for us to show off our town.
We may not be a “typical” American town. But this is our chance to offer typical American hospitality.
Volunteers are needed to serve breakfast and lunch, help out at Longshore, and clean up. “Tour guides” on buses are also needed. If interested, call 203-526-3275, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Or just give a big hello on Saturday to anyone wearing jUNe Day hats, and an orange bracelet.
As Westporters get ready for another summer of golf, tennis, swimming, boating, sailing and dining at Longshore, it’s fascinating to look at how folks spent their days there, back in the day:
That day was, of course, when Longshore was a private club — not a town-owned facility.
Formally dressed couples ate under umbrellas. A band played; above them, others danced. A lily pond added to the country club atmosphere.
I’m guessing this photo is from the 1920s or ’30s. I’d love to know more.
If you remember those days — or (more likely) heard about them from others — click “Comments” below.
If you’ve ever been to Joey’s by the Shore in the summer — or winter, when he manages Joey’s at the Longshore ice rink — you know Billy Hess.
He’s worked there for 3 decades. Every July 4th he dresses up as Uncle Sam.
Owner Joey Romeo says:
Billy has been the heart and soul of Joey’s for 30 years. Known for his selfless demeanor and permanent smile, he loves Westport and serving our customers.
In addition to an unparalleled work ethic, he’s the unofficial “Mr. Fix-It” of Compo and Longshore. Whether changing a flat tire, retrieving a kite from a tree or repairing a broken beach chair, he’s always there and eager to help — whether he knows you or not. He’s the first to volunteer and the last to take credit.
Billy and his wife Gina have 3 daughters. He has countless friends: customers he has served with passion and dedication, and workers he has mentored with love and care.
A couple of months ago, Billy was diagnosed with metastatic lung cancer. Since then, it’s spread. He’s endured surgeries and chemo with great strength.
There’s more treatment ahead. He also faces mounting medical bills.
Sara Colabella — who worked with Billy when she was in high school and college — has created a GoFundMe page. The goal is $50,000. Click here for the link.
He’s been humbled by the support and concern the community has shown.
But it’s the least we can do, after all Billy Hess has done for all of us.
Throughout Westport a few minutes ago, we were treated to a spectacular rainbow.
Here are a few shots, courtesy of alert — and impressed — “06880” readers.
The ospreys at Terrain/Fresh Market are Westport’s favorite raptors. Their nest is visible to everyone shopping or driving on that busy Post Road stretch.
The pair at Longshore is less visible — but just as majestic.
Alert (and patient) “06880” reader Alan Beasley snapped this shot near Gray’s Creek.
He says the male is hovering over the nest, while the female observes.