Category Archives: Sports

Roundup: Beach Access, Play In Hand, Pesach …

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A bill that would have banned municipalities from imposing high fees that might restrict non-residents from using public beaches — and from barring out-of-towners in order to prevent the spread of COVID — will not come up for a vote in the state legislature.

Politicians are spending their time on 2 other controversial measures — zoning reform and affordable housing — instead. The deadline for moving bills out of committee is April 5.

Click here for a full Norwalk Hour report.

Westport Parks & Recreation staff collect fees from non-residents.

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Speaking of our Parks & Recreation … they say:

“It has been nice to see so many people out using our facilities as the weather has improved, including some people using the Longshore golf course as an open space for walking. As of Monday (March 29), it will be open for play, and no longer available for those not actively playing golf.

“Please keep in mind, even using the roadways through Longshore can be dangerous as errant golf balls can cause serious injury or damage. For your safety, we urge you to use other locations for getting outside.”

Even with social distancing, Longshore golf course is off limits. (Photo/Mary Sikorski)

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Westport Country Playhouse’s popular “Script in Hand” series returns next month, with a virtual play reading of “Rent Control.” The Off-Broadway hit comedy tells the true story of a struggling-to-survive New York actor who invents a moneymaking scheme that (of course) backfires.

After premiering April 26 (7 p.m.), “Rent Control” is available on demand from April 27 through May 2.

Virtual tickets are available online, at 203-227-4177, or by email: boxoffice@westportplayhouse.org.

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Happy Passover — chag Pesach samech — to all who will celebrate tonight.

Gold’s was hopping yesterday. Here is a small part of the large crowd of people (and dogs), waiting to pick up food for the Seder.

(Photo/June Rose Whittaker)

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Meanwhile, we never get tired of these horses-at-Sherwood Island photos:

(Photo/Mandy Cummings)

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And finally … Larry McMurtry died on Thursday in Texas. He was 84.

He was a novelist, not a musician. But when he and Peter Bogdanovich adapted his novel “The Last Picture Show” into a movie, the soundtrack included a number of Hank Williams’ songs.

It’s still one of my favorite films of all time. And I’ve been a Hank Williams fan ever since.

Roundup: Firefighters, Swans, Geese …

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Earlier his week, Westport firefighters assisted the Westport Weston Health District and Department of Human Services by providing COVID vaccinations to homebound residents.

And … while delivering the vaccines, Fire Department members performed home safety inspections, including inspecting flammable substance storage, and checking and installing smoke and CO2 alarms.

Then yesterday morning, our firefighters helped Human Services by loading and unloading food boxes from the Connecticut Food Bank. 60 will be distributed to food-insecure households in Westport. Two more pick-ups are scheduled next month.

For more information on food resources, email humansrv@westportct.gov or call 203-341-1050.

Kudos to all involved. It takes a village — and ours is a great one. (Hat tip: Jennifer Gallini Petrosinelli)

Firefighter Liz Ferguson helps with food distribution.

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At the same time, Fire Department members were training downtown:

(Photo/Lauri Weiser)

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Audrey Hertzel posted a COVID vaccine comment. It’s so good, I’m repeating it here. Every “06880” reader needs to see this — and follow through.

Audrey wrote: “I had my first shot at the Stamford Lord & Taylor parking lot last week. Everyone was so wonderful.

“Someone on a local neighborhood group suggested bringing cookies, coffee, etc. to the the workers.

“I brought 100 Dunkin’ Munchkins and a Box of Joe for them to share. They couldn’t have been more appreciative. I’m hoping more people do the same — and spread the word to others!”

Thank-you donuts. (Photo/Audrey Hertzel)

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Interested in the future of downtown?

Tomorrow (Friday, March 26, 1:30 p.m., Zoom), the Westport Weston Chamber of Commerce and Senior Center offer an interesting online panel.

Topics include:

  • How is downtown doing?
  • Where is downtown headed, post-COVID?
  • Can people live downtown?
  • What is there for seniors?

The high-powered panelists include:

  • Randy Herbertson: President, Westport Downtown Merchants Association
  • David Waldman: Owner, David Adam Realty
  • Kim Harizman: Realtor, KMS Partners @ Compass
  • Annette Norton: Owner, Savvy + Grace

Chamber of Commerce director Matthew Mandell will moderate.

Click here for the Zoom link. The meeting code is 889 0588 3613. The passcode is wcsa.

What’s up downtown? (Photo/Lauri Weiser)

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Yesterday, the Board of Selectman unanimously adopted this resolution:

WHEREAS, Asian-Pacific American communities are suffering acts of discrimination, hate crimes, and microaggressions, which have been exposed and heightened due to COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, anti-Asian rhetoric and sentiment is stigmatizing, tends to incite fear and xenophobia, and numerous Asian-Pacific Americans are experiencing increased racial profiling, hate incidents, and, in some cases, hate violence; and

WHEREAS, in an effort to bring attention to baseless and xenophobic actions, hate speech, and bias, and most particularly, those against the Asian American and Pacific Island community, the Town of Westport must demonstrate its support for neighbors, families and friends who are adversely affected and traumatized by these acts.

NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Westport Board of Selectmen emphatically denounces xenophobia and anti-Asian sentiment. The Town of Westport joins municipalities, counties, and states across the country in affirming its commitment to the safety and well-being of Asian-Pacific Americans and in combating hate crimes targeting Asian-Pacific Americans; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that Westport remains committed to condemning all manner of racism, stigmatization, hate speech, hate crimes, xenophobia, discrimination and violence.  Protecting residents, business owners, workforce members, and victims of hate through supportive programs and policies that embrace inclusivity, diversity, civil discourse, and acceptance for all, remains at the forefront of our intentions as a community to combat hate and racial injustices.

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Yesterday’s “06880” Roundup mention of Christopher Lloyd prompted Jack Backiel to dig out his Staples High School 1958 yearbook.

Here’s what he found for his now-famous classmate:

Football? Party of the year? Lawrence (sp) Olivier? But hey — he still looks (almost) the same.

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Whitney Raith spotted this scene on Monday, just a few steps from busy Parker Harding Plaza. The swans were protecting their nest.

(Photo/Whitney Raith)

But, she notes: “When I walked by, one of the parents got very upset. I know swans can get nasty. I hope people are aware, and keep their distance.”

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On the same day, Daniel Hoffman spotted this guy at Compo:

(Photo/Daniel Hoffman)

“Spring is officially here,” Daniel says.

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After 38 years as founder and chair of the Susan Fund — where she oversaw raising and distributing nearly $2 million in scholarships to 285 Fairfield County students diagnosed with cancer — Ann Lloyd has stepped down from her role.

Incoming chair Jeff Booth’s first official act was to name Ann chairman emeritus.

That’s her second recent honor. Last month, the indefatigable Westporter was an “06880” Unsung Hero of the Week.

Ann Lloyd

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And still another sign of spring — and the (hopeful) end of the pandemic:

(Photo/Bill Ryan)

Bill Ryan says that the Longshore golf course sand traps are raked — and rakes are in place, ready to be used.

Last year, COVID restrictions included the removal of all rakes. Fore!

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And speaking of sports: Dave Briggs is a great interviewer. (He should be: He spent more than 2 decades at Fox News, NBC Sports and CNN.) His Instagram Live sessions have become must-see viewing for ever-larger audiences.

It helps that he snags great guests.

Today’s is Jay Williams. The NBA analyst and ESPN radio host is — like Dave — a a Westport resident.

It’s live at 2 p.m. today (Thursday, March 25; @WestportMagazine). The 2 guys welcome your questions. Shoot!

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In January 2020, “06880” reported that Little Beet was coming to the Fresh Market shopping center.

The chain offers “wholesome, healthy food that not only tastes great, but makes you feel great.” Food is “carefully sourced … from farmers and purveyors we trust, guaranteeing all of our food is gluten-free and better for you.”

The menu includes make-your-own rice and quinoa-based meals, poké and other bowls, vegetable sides, and breakfast sandwiches, parfaits and oatmeal.

Little Beet would open that summer, I confidently said.

COVID and (perhaps) other issues intervened. The storefront sat empty. But now, work has begun.

Perhaps a summer 2021 opening is on the table?

(Photo/Dan Woog)

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Last month, “06880” paid tribute to Bob Comstock. After a legendary career in New Jersey journalism, he spent nearly 20 years in Westport. He was active in the Unitarian Church and Y’s Men.

Yesterday, at his daily COVID press briefing, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy added his own tribute to Bob. Click below to watch:

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And finally … we celebrate 2 big musical birthdays today: Aretha Franklin and Elton John. What a duo they would have made!

Photo Challenge #325

Many “06880” readers know what a disc golf course looks like

Many others have seen one at Sherwood Island — even if they had no idea what it was.

Plenty of readers know both: that last week’s Photo Challenge offered an overhead view of one of the disc golf “holes,” at Connecticut’s first state park.

Janine Scotti’s image showed a basket with chains above it. When a “disc” (Frisbee is the trademarked name) hits the chains, it drops below. There are now over 8,000 courses, in 54 countries. (Click here for the photo.)

These readers knew one — or both — elements of last week’s Challenge: Rindy Higgins, Ellen Greenberg, Rich Stein, Chip Stephens, Clark Thiemann, Janet Amodio, Luke Garvey, Molly Alger, Wendy Crowther, Ralph Balducci, Brad French, Howard Potter, Laure Goldberg, Jalna Jaeger, Amy Schneider, Seth Braunstein, Janet Avon, Diane McCoy and Bruce Salvo.

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

(Photo/John Videler Photography)

FUN FACT 1: The name “Frisbie” comes from the Bridgeport-based Frisbie Pie Company. In the 1950s they supplied pies to Yale University, where students  started the fad of tossing empty pie tins stamped with the company’s logo.

FUN FACT 2: Staples High School had one of the first “Ultimate Frisbee” teams in the nation. Click here for details.

Roundup: Medicine, March Madness …

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Amy Crane posted on a local Facebook group:

“I am the mother of a seventh grader at Coleytown Middle School. Unfortunately I have developed a secondary cancer as a result of my original treatment, and will need a bone marrow transplant. If you are willing and able please register as a donor (click here). Most of the time it’s just like donating blood and not painful at all. Bonus if you are 18-44!”

The more matches, the more chances someone like Amy can be helped. (Hat tip: Frank Rosen)

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Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

You can celebrate with Charlie Heath. The Staples High School Class of 1987 graduate  was in the 1994 horror classic “Leprechaun 2.” It runs all day — with the other “Leprechaun” films — on the Syfy network. (Hat tip: Rich Stein)

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March Madness begins soon. And what better way to dive in than with FastBreak.

The digital show — which covers the NCAA basketball tournament in a variety of platforms, with wall-to-wall, fast-paced coverage — is hosted by Westporter Dave Briggs.

It’s a perfect role for the former NBC Sports, Fox News and CNN star.

He’s joined by Kentucky basketball legends Rex Chapman and Tony Delk for every game in the first 2 rounds this Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

You can watch on the NCAA website, or the March Madness Live app.

Dave Briggs (left) and friends.

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Registration for Westport Parks & Recreation spring and summer programs begins online on March 22 (9 a.m.). Click here for all offerings, including sports, Camp Compo and RECing Crew. Click here to register.

The Parks & Rec office remains closed to the public. Staff is available via email (recreation@westportct.gov), phone (203-341-5152 weekdays, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.) and mail (260 Compo Road South, Westport, CT 06880).

For registration, check your online account tnow. Log in, then click “Manage Family Members” on the bottom right. To view more details, click the name of a specific family member. Make any changes, then hit “save.” For address changes, email recreation@westportct.gov.

If you cannot log into your online account, do not create another profile. Email recreation@westportct.gov, or call 203-341-5152.

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And finally … “06880” (or should I say 0’6880) wishes all readers — Irish or (unfortunately) not — a happy St. Patrick’s Day.

Pic Of The Day #1429

Sunset rowers, seen from Longshore (Photo/Larry Hoy)

Benjamin’s Gift Eases Grief

Despite the new COVID world, spring and early summer of 2020 were exciting times for Emily Clare and Jon Cafasso.

The Westport couple were expecting their first child.

Emily Clare Cafasso, last spring.

Emily Clare had an uneventful pregnancy. They worked at home, in sweatpants. She’s in wealth management; he’s in finance for a global supply chain firm.

She was fit. At Staples High School (Class of 2000), Emily Fenn had been an All-American swimmer and Olympic trial qualifier. She went on to the University of Michigan, where she was a 2-time Division I All-American, and held 2 school records.

The baby’s heartbeat was good. There was plenty of movement.

But on July 1, Benjamin was stillborn.

Emily Clare and Jon tell their tale in gut-wrenching detail: The moment when she no longer felt a heartbeat. The drive to the hospital. Praying that the ultrasound will show life. Induced labor. Holding. then saying goodbye to their precious son. The knowledge that their lives had changed forever.

Talking about the loss of a child is one of society’s last taboos. Few people know what to say. Medical professionals don’t prepare parents for that possibility — even though, as Emily Clare notes, “8 million things” can go wrong from conception to delivery.

Jon and Emily Clare Cafasso hold Benjamin for the first — and last — time.

A devastating event like this can strain a marriage. It did that to the Cafassos, and tested their faith and strength.

But they had the support of “phenomenal” family and friends. That — and therapy, and virtual support groups — got them through those darkest days.

They mourned. They tried to moved forward.

And then one day, Emily Clare got the hospital bill.

“It was the height of my grief journey,” she recalls. “I had been fully prepared to pay for the delivery. But I hadn’t thought of this bill coming. It felt like a slap in the face — another reminder of everything that was supposed to be, and now wasn’t.”

A couple who lose a child lose every future milestone: first words, first toddling steps, first day of school. The hospital bill was one more devastating reminder of all the things the Cafassos would never experience.

Jon and Emily Clare will carry Benjamin’s name — tattooed on their arms — always.

Suddenly, Emily Clare wondered: What if we could take that moment away from another family in the future? It would not be a huge thing. But it would be important.

Her mother thought it was a great idea. When she told Jon, he embraced it too.

In the months since, Benjamin’s Gift has become a reality. The Cafassos earned 501 (c) 3 status as a non-profit public benefit corporation.

They created a comprehensive website, highlighting their story and information about stillbirth.

And they fundraised, starting with very generous friends and colleagues.

Now, Benjamin’s Gift will pay the hospital bill for stillbirths. It will still arrive. But parents can send it off to without even opening it. They’ll be spared one more reminder of their painful loss.

Three area hospitals — Stamford, Bridgeport and Yale New Haven — are including a letter from Emily Clare and Jon in the packet of materials they give to parents after losing a child. Emily Clare and Jon are contacting doctors and therapists too, to let them know of the service.

In a post-COVID world, they hope to organize an annual fundraiser. In the meantime, they spread the word however they can.

“There are a lot of great organizations out there,” Emily Clare notes. “This one is super-personal to us. And we think anyone with kids or grandchildren can relate to it.”

Nothing will ease her and Jon’s pain. But — one small step at a time — they are sparing others of one more reminder of how large a loss one tiny life can be.

(Click here for more information on Benjamin’s Gift. Click here for Emily Clare and Jon’s story about the day that changed their lives. For more information, email info@benjaminsgift.org, or follow on Instagram: @benjaminsgift. Checks can be sent to PO Box 368, Westport, CT 06881.)

Photo Challenge #324

As Staples High School’s head boys soccer coach, I’ve spent an inordinate amount of time at the Wakeman Fields.

I know the turf. I know the grass. I know the ridiculous parking situation.

But — until Elaine Marino sent me a photo — I had no idea a log-lined, wood chip-filled path led from Wakeman to North Pasture. (Click here to see.)

Nor did any other readers — except Julianne Low.

She nailed it. Every other guess — Earthplace, the Lillian Wadsworth Arboretum, Winslow Park, Baron’s South, a cemetery — was wrong.

So to all my fellow coaches, plus parents, athletes, dog walkers, model plane flyers and everyone else who enjoys Wakeman: We have to look around more.

And, of course, park better.

This week’s challenge Photo Challenge is less “straightforward.” If you know where in Westport you’d see this, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Janine Scotti)

Roundup: New Multi-Unit Housing, Daylight Savings, Staples Art …

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An application to convert the former Men’s Warehouse store to a 14-unit multi-family building awaits review by Westport’s Planning & Zoning Department staff.

The 950 Post Road East property sits between the (now closed) Bank of America branch, and the (also closed) Subway shop.

It’s a 2-story building. The first floor is below the main one, behind the parking lot.

The former Men’s Wearhouse property.

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Wakeman Town Farm is “egg-cited” to announce the return of “Egg-stravaganza.” Their traditional celebration of bunny, family fun is set for Saturday, April 3 (9 to 10:30 a.m.).

The egg hunt begins at 9;15 (bring your own basket!). Eggs can be turned in for a special treat bag from BD Provisions.

There’s also an egg roll and egg toss (with prizes), story time, photos with “Big Bunnies,” and animal visits (including the furry alpaca). Grownups get coffee.

First-come, first-served tickets are $10 per child or adult (free for anyone younger than 1). Click here to register.

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Don’t forget: Tonight is the night to set clocks forward for Daylight Savings Time.

Sure, we lose an hour of sleep. But that added hour of sunlight is worth it!

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Thursday’s “Roundup” featured a photo of exterior painting at 19 Soundview Drive — right next to a “Demolition” sign.

Today, the house was fully painted. And the sign was gone.

A worker said it will not be knocked down soon. Word on the street drive is that it may be cleaned up for a summer rental. Stay tuned, though: It might be knocked down this fall.

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Everyone says it, but last night — right in front of Joe’s Pizza — we had proof:

Westport’s gone nuts.

(Photo/Jeff Gray)

Six Staples High School students have earned Scholastic Connecticut Regional Arts Awards recognitions. The 98-year-old nationwide program includes a juried exhibition.

Congratulations to Silver Key winners Poppy Livingstone (painting) and Akira Maidique (digital art). Honorable Mention recipients include Kate Davitt and Nate Kolek (drawing and illustration), Matthew Genser (photography) and Alexandra Lam (painting).

Click here for the virtual exhibition.

A collage of the Staples artists’ work.

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Weston Center has been a bit lonely since Peter’s Market closed in January.

Residents were heartened recently to see these signs.

No word on timing. But it’s a start. (Hat tip: Hanna and Conor O’Byrne)

(Photo courtesy of Libby Cailen, “Parents of Weston, CT” Facebook group)

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Is there any holiday that Winslow Park Animal Hospital doesn’t celebrate?

The popular Post Road clinic is sure ready for Wednesday.

(Photo/Molly Alger)

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Hot on the “heels” of news about The Joggers Club’s Junior running group, they announce for adults too.

The Joggers Club meets every Saturday at 8 a.m., at Compo Beach. Runs are designed to satisfy everyone.

You don’t even have to know how to run. Just get outside, and put one foot in front of the other.

Every week brings a different course. After each run, there’s coffee and Village Bagels treats, for a nice social hour

Click here, or follow The Joggers Club on Facebook or Strava. A year’s membership is just $50, and includes a cool customized running tank designed by Fleet Feet.

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And finally … happy 82nd birthday to former teen idol (and former Westporter) Neil Sedaka!

 

 

Pic Of The Day #1424

Fly fishing on the Saugatuck River (Photo/Pippa Bell Ader)

Roundup: Downtown Plan, Coastal Living, Dracula …

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There’s a new sheriff downtown.

Randy Herbertson replaces Dewey Loselle as chair of the Downtown Plan Implementation Committee. Loselle — former chief operations for the chair — resigned recently, after many years in the post.

Herbertson is president of the Westport Downtown Merchants Association. He owns The Visual Brand, a design agency on Church Lane.

The DPIC is responsible for carrying out the Downtown Master Plan. Under Loselle, the group implemented streetscape improvements on Elm Street, new sidewalks and lights on Main Street, Veterans Green sidewalks and more.

1st Selectman Jim Marpe — who appointed Herbertson to the post — thanked Loselle for his long service.

Randy Herbertson

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Speaking of planning:

Neighbors watched warily all winter, as activity began on 12 acres of land bordered by Clapboard Hill Road, Morningside Drive South and Turkey Hill Road South.

Stakes with pink strips appeared in the ground, and a new gravel path was built from Clapboard Hill.

Is one of the town’s last large tracts of private property being developed?

Plans are underway for several new homes. There are wetlands issues, and the Conservation Commission required those borders to be withdrawn. The permitting process with other town boards is still in the early stages too.

Meanwhile, another home nearby is being built on a separate property.

(Photo/Nicholas Eisenberger)

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I usually avoid posting links to listicle stories: “50 Best Suburbs For Seniors!” “Top 500 Schools in America!”

They’re clickbait. Their methodology is dubious at best, and manipulable for their own demographics. Besides, if Staples High School is #1 in one poll, then #2 in the next, taxpayers get all their knickers in a twist.

But Coastal Living’s “Best Beach Towns: Dreamy Places to Live” issue is worth noting — if only for the writeup. It’s the way the world (or at least that portion of it that reads Coastal Living) sees us:

“You can’t imagine the volume of COVID refugees,” says Shari Lebowitz, citing the cheering sight of new families with baby strollers and slow-waling toddlers along the tidy sidewalks of this leafy enclave on Long Island Sound.”

The magazine says that Lebowitz — owner of Bespoke Designs — moved here for “a cultured little town that supported entrepreneurs. Westport, driven by small waterways with open space for wildlife, also has a charming stretch of tawny beach that serves as the town’s outdoor living room all summer long. (Dogs and their happy owners take over in the off season.)”

MoCA Westport is a “small contemporary art museum that punches well above its weight with arts education, performances, and world-class exhibitions.”

Lebowitz gets the last word: “I can make coffee and drive down to drink it on the beach every morning before work. What more could I want?” (Hat tips: Lisa Gold, Tom Feeley)

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What better way to mark the 1-year anniversary of the COVID lockdown than with a horror show?

This Sunday (March 14, 6 p.m.), a worldwide audience can fire up the computer and listen to “Dracula.” Staples Players presents the 4th in their winter radio shows via livestream, at www.wsptfm.org.

Following 6 previous radio shows this pandemic year, “Dracula” promises to be another smash. It’s a great drama. Cast and crew have been hard at work perfecting timing, sound effects, and (of course) their Transylvanian accents.

Jamie Mann, David Corro and Violet Cooper have key roles. David Roth and Kerry Roth co-produce the show; Don Rickenback is music director, and Geno Heiter oversees the audio.

NOTE: If you missed the original broadcasts of 2 previous Players radio shows — “Little Women” and “Sorry, Wrong Number” — they’ll be on the WWPT-FM livestream the following Sunday, March 21 (6 p.m. and 7:10 p.m., respectively).

The cast and crew of “Dracula.” (Photo/Kerry Long)

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On the Staples sports scene:

Last night — for perhaps the first time in Wrecker swim team history — 3 siblings swam on the same relay team.

Justin (senior), Jason (sophomore) and Jared (freshman) Lessing joined Daniel Rosenkranz. The foursome placed 2nd in the 200 freestyle relay at the Senior Day meet against Danbury. Staples’ other relay team won that race; both helped the Wreckers to take the entire meet.

Coach Todd Gordon fulfilled the Lessings’ longtime dream of swimming on a high school relay squad together. He’s a former swimmer and pitcher at Harvard University. Justin plays both sports at Staples too. This was his first meet of the year, after suffering tendinitis in his pitching arm.

From left: Jason Lessing, Jared Lessing, Daniel Rosenkranz and Justin Lessing. Daniel and Justin are co-captains.

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More Staples news: Congratulations to Students of the Month Moses Beary, Marley Brown, Gianna Amatuzzi, Camryn Zukowski, Sophie Hekmat, Quinn McMahon and Maggie Montoya.

The awardees — nominated by teachers — are students who help make Staples High School a welcoming place for peers and teachers. Principal Stafford Thomas calls them “the ‘glue’ of community: the type of kind, cheerful, hard-working, trustworthy students who keep the high school together.”

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Westport’s yard waste site resumes regular hours of operation, starting this Monday (March 15): weekdays 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Saturdays 7 a.m. to noon.

The location is 180 Bayberry Lane (by the Westport Weston Health District).

Yard waste at 180 Bayberry Lane.

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Temperatures are ticking up into the 60s. Daylight Savings starts Sunday morning.

Meanwhile, the Imperial Avenue parking lot snow bank shows no signs of melting.

(Photo/Tammy Barry)

We will mark its progress by various dates: Easter. May Day. Memorial Day. The 4th of July …

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State Senator Will Haskell is the new chair of the General Assembly’s Transportation Committee. He previously chaired the Higher Education and Employment Advancement Committee.

“For the last 2 years, I’ve kept a Metro-North timetable from 1970 on my desk in the Senate,” the 2014 Staples High School graduate says.

“Over the last 5 decades those trains have gotten slower, not faster. It’s time to reverse that trend by investing in green infrastructure, creating good-paying jobs and helping our constituents get where they need to go.”

State Senator Will Haskell, with a Metro-North train.

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And finally … Lawrence Welk was born today in 1903. He died in 1992, at 89. A one, an’ a two …