Category Archives: Photo Challenge

Photo Challenge #397

For an out-of-the-way, neglected property, plenty of people know Golden Shadows.*

The former home of Baron Walter Langer von Langendorff and his wife — sometimes described as a “mansion” or “estate” — sits high on a hill, in the middle of the 22-acre property between Compo Road South and Imperial Avenue, known as “Baron’s South.”

(The baron — who may or may not have been actual royalty — also owned 32 across the Post Road; it’s now known as Winslow Park, in honor of a previous owner.)

The town has owned Baron’s South for over 20 years, but has yet to decide what to do with it. Hiking trails are overgrown; invasive species have invaded, and the baron’s home suffers from water leaks, foundation cracks and general neglect.

The house may not be at the top of the town’s plans. But it’s well known to the 17 “06880” readers who correctly identified Molly Alger’s image as last week’s Photo Challenge. (Click here to see.)

Congratulations to Michael Calise, Gloria Gouveia, John Karrel, Seth Schachter, Jerry Kuyper, Dave Eason, Fred Cantor, Martha Witte, Dan Vener, Andrew Colabella, Richard Stein, Mary Ann Batsell, Dick Lowenstein, Tara Curruto, Seth Braunstein, Bruce Salvo and Linda Amos. You win a weekend retreat for 2 at the mansion.

This week’s Photo Challenge is not neglected at all. If you know where in Westport you’d see this, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Ellen Wentworth)

*Not “Golden Showers.” Please — this is a family-friendly blog.

(“06880” has covered Baron’s South news since our founding, in 2009. As always, we rely on reader contributions to keep us going. Please click here to contribute.)

Photo Challenge #396

Most backyard sculptures are enjoyed by whoever lives in the house, and anyone fortunate enough to be invited over.

The backyard of one Beachside Common home is not like most.

The sculpture there is admired by anyone driving into Burying Hill Beach. It’s visible on the right, just across the marsh.

Lynn Untermeyer Miller, Seth Schachter, Michael Calise, Andrew Colabella, Richard Hyman, Ed Simek and Mary Ann Batsell all correctly identified last week’s Photo Challenge as that intriguing sculpture. Click here to see — and check it out the next time you’re at that quiet, quaint and very beautiful beach.

Now check out this week’s Photo Challenge. If you know where in Westport it is, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Molly Alger)

Photo Challenge #395

For a couple of years, a “Pride Bench” — decked out in rainbow colors — sat in front of Mystic Market. Everyone traveling past, on heavily trafficked Charles Street, saw it and smiled.

When the store closed in May, Westport Country Playhouse company manager, Bruce Miller thought that — given their close ties to the LGBTQ community — the Playhouse could make a good next home.

The Mystic Market folks agreed. The “Pride Bench” now sits proudly in front of the Sheffer Studio.

Fred Cantor, Lynn Untermeyer Miller, Amy Schneider and Jonathan Prager all knew the new location of the bench. Susan Iseman, Nancy Vener and Celeste Champagne, meanwhile, recognized it from its previous location. (Click here to see the photo.)

This week’s Photo Challenge is less colorful — but very interesting. If you know where in Westport you’d see this, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Johanna Keyser Rossi)

Photo Challenge #394

There are many reasons to shop at Trader Joe’s*: the intriguing selection. The always-cheerful “crew.” The fun vibe.

And — though we tend to see right past it — the artwork.

Several pieces add to the community-spirit mood. (It’s a corporate model: Every store in the country features local scenes.)

Last week’s Photo Challenge showed a piece of the “Westport” work hanging near the registers. (Click here to see.)

Howard Potter, Fred Cantor, Susan Yules, Shirlee Gordon, Elaine Marino, Debbie O’Malley, Lynn Untermeyer Miller, Charles Wiseman, Andrew Colabella and Bobbie Herman are all shoppers who (at least occasionally) look up from chatting with the clerks to enjoy the art. Well done!

This week’s Photo Challenge is even more colorful than the last. If you know where in Westport you’d see this, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Dan Woog)

*Though the parking lot is not one of them.

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Photo Challenge #393

There are lots of concrete and brick-lined staircases in Westport — near elementary schools, by the old library, by Patagonia, by for example.

There are even 2 in Playhouse Square. One leads from the parking lot to Salsa Fresca.

That was close to the correct answer to last week’s Photo Challenge.

The actual one was the much less used (and visible) stairway: the one to the left of Granola Bar, leading to the gym and offices underneath the shopping center (and the back of Quality Towing).

Eric Bosch, Diane Bosch, Morgan Smith and Patricia Blaufuss were the 4 readers who knew exactly where last week’s Photo Challenge was located. Click here to see.

This week’s Challenge should be familiar. If you know where in Westport you’d see this, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Maggie Rahe)

Photo Challenge #391

Since opening in the middle of the pandemic, The Porch @ Christie’s has become exactly what owners Bill and Andrea Pecoriello envisioned: a worthy successor to the long-lived market/deli on Cross Highway.

Also: place for people with disabilities to learn skills, and work.

And a gathering spot for friends.

Which is why a sign saying “Friends” hangs proudly on the back wall, near the fireplace.

Andrew Colabella, Lynn Untermeyer Miller, Barbara Greenspan, Cia Marion, Martin Gitlin and Paul Cahill all knew exactly where to find last week’s Photo Challenge. Click here to see — then head over yourself, for breakfast, lunch, dinner, coffee, ice cream or sweets.

But first, check out this week’s Photo Challenge. If you know where in Westport you’d find this charging station, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Les Dinkin)


Photo Challenge #389

Fred Born died.

Then his son donated a flagpole in his memory to the Senior Center.

A plaque at the base describes the longtime member as a “boatsman, machinist, story teller and Gentleman with a never-ending smile.”

It’s a wonderful plaque. However, no one ever sees it.

The only “06880” reader to correctly identify last week’s Photo Challenge was Susan Pfister. And she should know: She’s the director of the Senior Center. (Click here for the image; scroll down for the several wrong guesses.)

For this week’s challenge, you have to look up — not down. If you know where in Westport you’d see this, click “Comments” below.

NOTE: It’s not obscure. You just have to know where to look.

(Photo/Sally Galan)

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Photo Challenge #388

Saugatuck Congregational Church occupies an important place in Westport — not only spiritually, but historically and geographically.

It was where our town began — literally. Meetings to form “Westport” — separate from Norwalk, Wilton, Weston and Fairfield, each of which we were once part of — took place there in the 1830s.

The church was originally located diagonally across the street, where the bank and Shell station are now. It was moved across the Post Road in 1950 (on logs!) in 1950, an event commemorated in Life magazine.

Now, the broad lawn a few yards from Myrtle Avenue and downtown marks it as a quintessential New England church. It’s a perfect spot for things like a healing labyrinth, and the Blessing of the Animals.

It’s also where a pair of angel wings stand. The original idea, Lois Himes notes, was for people to stand in front of the wings for a photo, then “go forth and do God’s work by being an angel.” (Click here to see.)

The wings were the subject of last week’s Photo Challenge. Lois identified Nancy Engel’s image correctly. So did Diane Bosch, Susan Iseman, Jenny Rago McCarthy, Janice Strizever, Jalna Jaeger, Karen Kim, Lynn Wilson, Joelle Malec, Susan Miller and (the lone male) Eugene C. Gavin. Congratulations to all!

This week’s Challenge involves Fred Born (who, like everyone who is born, eventually died). Do you know where his plaque is? And if so, can you tell us more about him (beyond his talents as a boater, machinist and storyteller)? Just click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Bob Weingarten)

Photo Challenge #387

It’s been — according to Kenneth Gilbertie — “the Bottle Shop liquor store, a barber shop, a Tiffany Lamp store (in reality a front for illegal drugs), Soup’s On kitchen for many years, then (Cabbages & Kings’) caterers’ kitchen. Now it’s just a ghost store.”

It was described, variously, as opposite Franklin Street, opposite Westport Chinese Takeout, and — by the always accurate Gloria Gouveia — “56 Saugatuck Avenue.”

The “little shop built into the hillside by Exit 17” (Clark Thiemann) was also last week’s Photo Challenge.

It’s all of that, and more. For example, it’s one of the most familiar, most abandoned, and most wondered about eyesore in town. When traffic backs up on Saugatuck Avenue, drivers get a long time to look at it. (You can too: Click here for Kevin McCaul’s photo.)

Besides the names noted above, readers who knew exactly where this was include Monika Lazaro, Leah Nash, Ralph Balducci, Fred Cantor, Jonathan McClure, Andrew Colabella, Stephanie Ross and John Lisee.

Here’s this week’s Photo Challenge. If you know where in Westport you’d see this, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Nancy Engel)

Photo Challenge #386

Seth Schachter’s industrial-looking photo stumped all but one reader last week.

There are not many steel girders visible in Westport. Good guesses included the train station elevator shaft and tracks, Urban Outfitters, and construction at the Bankside condos and Main Street.

Only Andrew Colabella recognized the beams as part of Anthropologie. They’re remnants of the old YMCA, which stood on that downtown site from 1923 until the early 2010s. Click here to see.

You have to get up very early to fool Andrew. Will he (or you) get this week’s Photo Challenge?

If you know where in Westport you’d see this, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Kevin McCaul)