Category Archives: Photo Challenge

Photo Challenge #343

I’m always amazed at how many people don’t use the 3-level parking garage on Wilton Road, opposite Bartaco and OKO restaurants.

But because I am also amazed at how observant and vigilant* “06880” readers are, I’m not surprised at how quickly so many nailed last week’s Photo Challenge.

It showed the Fire Department standpipe connection on the top level of that parking garage. And it is not only across the street from a frequently filled parking lot; as former firefighter and dispatcher Ken Gilbertie notes, it is also across from the original Vigilant Hose Company volunteer firehouse.

Besides Ken, our firefighter’s hat is off to Fred Cantor, Wendy Cusick, Gloria Gouveia, Clark Thiemann, Adam Starr, Richard Stein and Soodie Farley.

This week’s Photo Challenge comes from Nancy Kondub-Harris. If you know where in Westport you would see this, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Nancy Kondub-Harris)

* See next paragraph for clever reference

Photo Challenge #341

Sure, it’s a cemetery. But Willowbrook has long been an enticing place to walk, jog, bike, even play.

The expansive property on Main Street, just past Coffee An’ heading north, is beautiful. There are plenty of paths, and lots of greenery.

Plus a large mausoleum, which many “0688o” have noticed over the years.

Mark Jacobs’ image was last week’s Photo Challenge. (Click here to see.)

Emily Mikesell, Seth Schachter, Andrew Colabella, Susan Feliciano, E.M. Auber, Michelle S. Saunders, Tom Wall, Peter Swift, Jeff Mitchell and Carissa Simon Baker all recognized it from their jaunts through Willowbrook.

It’s a great spot to rest. Momentarily, or permanently.

This week’s Photo Challenge shows another soothing spot. If you know where in Westport you’d see this, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Larry Untermeyer)


Photo Challenge #340

There’s at least one good thing about the traffic clogging Saugatuck: It gives drivers the chance to admire the fence in front of the home next to the VFW, on Riverside Avenue near the intersection with Saugatuck Avenue and Treadwell.

That intricate, whimsical fence — designed by Andrew Hamilton Reise — was the subject of last week’s Photo Challenge. (Click here to see.)

Tons of readers quickly identified it. They also noted the owners: Pietro and Janine Scotti. He’s the owner/chef of the former and still beloved Da Pietro’s restaurant, just down Riverside (and across the street) closer to town.

Janine reports that he’s “cooking up a storm” now at Vieste in Newport. It’s not that far! Just hop on I-95, a few yards away from the Scottis’ funky fence 🙂

Congratulations to Gerald F. Romano, Darcy Sledge, Nancy Wilson, Leslie Flinn, Lynn Untermeyer Miller, David Waldman, Karen Como, Arthur Hayes, Pat Saviano, Wendy  Cusick, Seth Braunstein, Michael Calise, Soodie Farley, Jamie Walsh, Maria Funicello, Jonathan McClure, Pete Powell and Melisa Didio. You all know that great fences make wonderful neighbors.

What about big wooden doors? If you know where in Westport you’d see this week’s Photo Challenge, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Mark Jacobs)

Photo Challenge #339

I whiz by the site of last Sunday’s Photo Challenge often. I never see it.

Then again, I time my Staples High School comings and goings so I’m not stuck in the early morning and/or mid-afternoon crawl through the secondary (south) entrance, on North Avenue.

That’s the narrow lane with the unmarked speed hump and the stop sign hidden by leaves.

If you wait there, you probably have time to look around. And notice the door in the fence that allows access to and from Willow Walk.

Amy Swanson, Andrew Colabella and Jonathan McClure — 3 Photo Challenge regulars — knew exactly what Seth Schachter’s shot showed. (Click here to see.)

Now the question is: Has anyone ever actually used the gate?

This week, we continue with the Seth Schachter-shots-of-wooden-fences-we-pass-every-day theme. If you know where in Westport you’d see this, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Seth Schachter)

Photo Challenge #338

Terrain is a joy to look at.

The garden store/home decor shop/cafe/restaurant (and much much more) is a verdant spot on the Post Road, a lush counterpart to the strip malls next door and across the street.

(Their neglect of the old wooden building between Terrain and the fire station is another story entirely.)

But there’s more to Terrain than meets the eye. Or, more exactly, there’s more when you look up at the exterior of the former car dealership.

The wall is filled with flower pots. They form quite a pattern. JC Martin captured them for last week’s Photo Challenge. (Click here to see.)

Elaine Marino, Paloma Bima, Susan Iseman, Andrew Colabella, Jonathan McClure, Shirlee Gordon, Molly Alger, Joelle Malec, Nancy Axthelm, Patricia McMahon, Seth Braunstein, Julie Shapiro and Martha Spiegel all correctly identified the spot.

(It was obviously not, as one readerthought, a mausoleum wall at Willowbrook cemetery.)

This week’s Photo Challenge comes from Seth Schachter. Most Westporters have passed by this at least occasionally — sometimes daily. Yet how many of us really see it?

If you know were in Westport you’d find this, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Seth Schachter)



Photo Challenge #337

One reader called it “another fabulous crown jewel.” Another said it was a “fabulous spot for a nice party.”

“It” is the small clubhouse at Ned Dimes Marina. Separating scores of boats from the parking lot by the softball field, the low wooden building can be lost in Compo Beach’s beauty.

But it really is a gem. It’s a spot to sit, rest and people-watch. It’s shaded and breezy.

And — though many Westporters don’t know this — the clubhouse is also available to rent, for a modest-compared-to-most-places fee.

Fred Cantor, Lee Ann Bollert, Diane Silfen, Andrew Colabella, Rich Stein, Louis Weinberg, Thomas Siebrasse, Marc Isaacs, Michael Calise, Jonathan McClure and Sue Kane all identified last week’s Photo Challenge, a reflective-type shot by Dinkin Fotografix. (Click here to see.)

So who was Ned Dimes?

He was a former All-New England soccer player at Wesleyan University, B-24 World War II pilot, and Yale Law graduate who practiced his entire career in Westport.

In his 55 years here he was elected to the Board of Finance (18 years, 14 as chair); served as president of the Westport Pension Board; was on the Representative Town Meeting, Recreation Commission, Public Site & Building Committee and Planning and Zoning Commission (alternate), and was a YMCA trustee.

Dimes also chaired Saugatuck Congregational Church’s board of trustees, and was a deacon. He spent 50 years as a Saugatuck Hose Company #4 member (as well as their attorney and trustee).

He also belonged to the Minuteman and South Norwalk Boat Clubs — more reasons (among many) that our “crown jewel” marina is named for Ned Dimes. He died in 2005, age 82.

Meanwhile — away from the beach — if you know where in Westport you’d see this, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/JC Martin)

Photo Challenge #336

You’d think a plaque honoring all of Westport’s veterans — “living or dead” — would be located in a prominent spot. Veterans Green, probably. The VFW, perhaps.

You’d also think that because it was dedicated in 1975, plenty of people would remember where it was.

You’d be wrong.

Wendy Crowther, Joyce Barnhart and Michael Calise were the only “06880” readers who knew where last week’s photo challenge can be found. (Click here to see.)

It’s not what our veterans deserve. The plaque is where Long Lots Road feeds into Post Road East, just west of Shearwater Coffee and One River Art (before that, Bertucci’s/Tanglewoods/Clam Box). A memorial flagpole once stood nearby. I can’t imagine many people ever see the plaque now.

Yet there’s a reason it’s there. For several decades, a Doughboy statue graced the median, between the restaurant and the hardware store across the way.

It was relocated 25 or 30 years ago to Veterans Green (though it was not called that then). It’s certainly a more appropriate — and accessible — spot.

Last week’s challenge was fitting: It was the day before Memorial Day. (And today is D-Day.)

This week’s photo has no tie-in to anything — except it’s somewhere in Westport. If you think you know where it is, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Dinkin Fotografix)

Photo Challenge #335

Who knew there were so many culverts in Westport?

A couple of weeks ago, John Kantor took “06880” readers on a tour of the secret — well, well-hidden — passages that allow kayakers and canoeists to travel from Sherwood Mill Pond to beyond Burying Hill Beach without even a portage.

Susan Iseman’s Photo Challenge last Sunday showed 2 more culverts. (Which raises the question: Why are they always side by side?)

Wrong guesses included Nash’s Pond, Sasco Creek, Deadman Brook and Otter Trail.

The correct answer: Willowbrook Cemetery. The culverts are on the south end of the graveyard, at Carriage Lane. You can see them from Main Street, (You can also see them by clicking here.)

Andrew Colabella and Alfred Herman correctly identified the site of the culverts. They’re one more reason — beside the beautiful Daffodil Mile every spring — to slow down as you pass by this beautiful, and historic, cemetery.

This week’s Photo Challenge also brings to mind Westporters who have passed — those who gave their lives for our country.

They’ll be honored tomorrow, after the Memorial Day parade, at Veterans Green. It’s well worth watching.

Meanwhile, where in Westport would you find this memorial?

NOTE: It is not at Veterans Green.

(Photo/Scott Bennewitz)


Photo Challenge #334

To many folks, it was an abstract image. Some may have realized it was a stone wall.

But to the elite subset of “06880” readers who specialize in figuring out each Sunday’s Photo Challenge, it was child’s play. They quickly identified its location on Beachside Avenue, just past the Greens Farms Academy entrance on the left heading toward Southport. (Click here to see.)

Don’t ask me how they do it. But kudos to Chris Swan, Andrew Colabella, John Richers, Seth Schachter, Judy Reid and Seth Braunstein, who once again rose to the challenge.

And surpassed it.

This week’s Challenge shows 2 culverts. Hint: They’re not the ones featured in a recent story about the culverts linking Sherwood Mill Pond to Burying Hill Beach.

If you know where in Westport you’d see this pair, click “Comments” below. Bonus points for identifying the body of water.

(Photo/Susan Iseman)

Photo Challenge #333

I was sure that no one would know the answer to last week’s Photo Challenge.

I was sure wrong.

By now I should know not to underestimate “06880” readers’ powers of observation.

Or their knowledge of esoterica.

Andrew Colabella, Rich Stein, David Warburg, Celia Campbell-Mohn and Abby Tolan all knew that David Squires’ image showed the siren horn on the front of a fire truck. (Click here to see.)

John McCarthy knew that the truck belongs to the Greens Farms fire station.

Tomas Curwen, Brandon Malin and Wendy Cusick knew that too — and they identified it as a “Federal Q2B mechanical siren.”

Tomas — a Staples High School senior who hopes to become a firefighter — went one step further that that, and said it was “mounted on the bumper of Engine 5 at Greens Farms Station 5.”

Who knew?!

“0688o” readers, that’s who. You never cease to amaze me. My (figurative firefighter’s) hat is off to you.

Meanwhile, I’ll keep trying to stump you.

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

I dare you.

(Photo/Craig Gerard)