Category Archives: Westport life

It All Depends On What “Any Time” Means

Seen at Wakeman Field:

(Photo/Mark Mathias)

If you’re going to ignore the sign, at least park a few yards away. That way you can at least “pretend” you didn’t see it.

Head’s Up: South Beach Bathroom Opens Tomorrow

Construction is finished. Plumbing is installed. Toilet paper is stocked.

Starting tomorrow, the new bathrooms at Compo Beach’s South Beach are good to “go.”

(Photo/Matt Murray)

Countless folks will sigh with relief, as they relieve themselves just a few steps across the also-new, already-well-used, keep-pedestrians-and-strollers-off-the-road walkway.

See you there!

Save The Date: “06880” Blog Party Is July 18

If you’re reading this, you’re part of the great “06880” online community.

Which means you’re invited to our 6th annual “blog party.”

The date is Thursday, July 18. We’ll gather at 6 p.m. at Compo Beach — specifically, alcohol-is-okay South Beach, by the trees (the opposite end from the cannons).

Bring your own food, beverages (no glass bottles, though!), beach chairs and blankets.

The first 5 years were great successes. They were true community gatherings– chances to meet and mingle with the diverse “06880” community (both online and real). It’s fun, un-fancy, and free (unless you don’t have a sticker — but even then, we’ll try to arrange rides).

This year’s blog party will be better than ever. And here’s a special feature: a new bathroom has just been built, a few steps across the road.

You may recall reading about it on “06880.”

Happy party-goers at the 2014 “06880” bash.

Ay, Caramba!

There’s a big parking deck directly opposite the Bartaco parking lot on Wilton Road.

You can see it right there, in the background of this photo.

(Photo/Miggs Burroughs)

You can also see that there is plenty of room. There is one car on the upper level.

But that did not stop this Range Rover driver. Or rather, he did stop in the parking lot — not the deck.

There he is, right next to the “Reserved Parking” sign.

And yes, that’s a parking job. He is not driving. He did not just drop off a passenger. He has not pulled over to text.

He stopped. He parked. He got out.

Or she.

And it isn’t even a decent parking job in the middle of the entrance! Look how far the driver is from the curb!

I need a margarita.

A Guy In A Black Porsche Sees A Lemonade Stand…

If you wanted lemonade yesterday, you were in luck.

Over 30 stands popped up throughout county. They were part of the 6th annual Angel-Ade, a fundraiser for the great Al’s Angels children’s charity.

Then there was the stand on the corner of Stoneboat and Red Coat Roads.

It’s not the most well-traveled spot in town. But 4 neighborhood kids — 9-year-olds Sophie Chan and Jessica Selzer, and 6-year-olds Torey Chan and Jacob Selzer — decided to raise money for St. Jude’s.

They sold fruit cups for $2, cookies (2 for $2), and lemonade ($1).

The young lemonade stand proprietors. (Photo/Frank Rosen)

A guy in a black Porsche 911 drove past. He slowed down, circled back, got out and talked with the kids.

He bought a lemonade, and handed them $100.

Jessica said she could not break the bill.

He told her: “Keep the change.”

The Selzers’ mom Jodi said, “We never met this man before. We were shocked by his generosity.”

The kids raised $215. Chances are, for the rest of their lives they’ll never forget that great $100 gift, from a man they did not even kn0w.

(Hat tip: Frank Rosen)

And That Reminds Me …

Of “06880”‘s 12,000 or so daily readers, approximately 1/3 live outside Connecticut. You’re in all 50 states, and every continent except Antarctica.

Wherever you are — and however long ago you lived here, or had some other connection to the town — you still hold Westport close. That’s obvious from what you say publicly in the “Comments” section, and the emails you send privately.

Many of you love your current cities and towns. It’s sure a great big world beyond this place.

But you’re also reminded, from time to time, of Westport.

It looks kind of like the Cribari Bridge in Saugatuck. But this is actually a swing bridge over the Schuylkill River.

So let’s crowd-source those connections. If you live outside Westport, please send a photo of someplace, something or someone that reminds you of here.

It can be a view or vista; a restaurant or store; a street sign — anything that, whenever you see it, makes you think of “06880.”

Email your images to dwoog@optonline.net. We’ll post a selection of your shots soon.

Y’s Men: Memorial Day Floats Their Boat

No, the fix is not in.

The Y’s Men are just that good.

Every year since Edward T. Bedford built the Westport YMCA*, the gung-ho group of nearly 400 retired and semi-retired men has won the Memorial Day Best Float competition.

The tradition continued this year.

The 2019 parade theme was “Thank a Veteran.” The Y’s Men took it one step further, thanking Merchant Marines — the “unsung heroes” of World War II — for their service.

If you were at the parade, you know how great the float was.

If you weren’t, you missed another great tribute, from men who are members of — or close to — the Greatest Generation.

Whether you were there or not, enjoy this video, created by Y’s Man Sal Mollica. It’s a quick look at the float’s creators, its construction, and the proud part it played in Westport’s Memorial Day parade.

*Or maybe it just seems that way.

We Remember: Memorial Day 2019, Part 2

The sun is still shining. The grills are still smoking. The holiday spirit lingers in Westport — especially after months of rain and cool weather.

As always, Memorial Day was a time of mixed emotions: a celebration of the country our military has always protected so well, and honors for those who gave their lives so we could have this celebration.

Here’s one more look at Memorial Day in Westport.

The Bedford and Coleytown Middle School bands combined this year. Hundreds of young musicians sounded great — and very together! (Photo/Sarah Tamm)

Bill Vornkahl directed the parade — as he has for the past 48 years. It’s not a Westport Memorial Day without him. (Photo/Carmine Picarello)

The reviewing stand. Grand Marshal Nick Zeoli is at far right. (Photo/Dan Woog)

World War II veteran and Grand Marshal Nick Zeoli — 96 years young — delivers the Memorial Day address. (Photo/Carmine Picarello)

Today’s theme was “Thank a Veteran.” These vets posed proudly … (Photo/Dan Woog)

… as did these 2 Navy veterans: from France (left) and the US. (Photo/Dan Woog)

Memorial Day fashion. (Photo/Carmine Picarello)

Staples High School senior Nick Rossi sings “America the Beautiful.” At the end of the ceremony, he played a mournful “Taps” on his trumpet. (Photo/Dan Woog)

We Remember: Memorial Day 2019, Part 1

Today’s Memorial Day parade was the first in several years with beautiful weather.

Nearly everyone marched: police, firefighters, non-profit organizations, youth teams, Scouts, Suzuki violinists, a random pediatric dentist.

As usual — and as always deserved — the Y’s Men won the Best Float competition.

Here are a few scenes from today’s parade. More — plus images from the post-parade ceremony on Veterans Green  — will be posted later today.

The start of the route, on Riverside Avenue, was swimming with Westport YMCA Water Rats. (Photo/Jodi Harris)

It doesn’t get more classic than this. (Photo/Doris Ghitelman)

Alex Merton — almost 3 — is captivated by a fife and drum corps. (Photo/Fred Cantor)

The theme of the parade was “Thank a Veteran.” This vet received many thanks … (Photo/Beth Devoll)

… as did this veteran … (Photo/Doris Ghitelman)

… and this. (Photo/Doris Ghitelman)

Page Englehart gives the thumb’s up to a float honoring servicemenbers. Her son Williiam — a Staples High School 2014 graduate — is in the Marine Corps. (Photo/Anne Hardy)

Suzuki violinists played “Turkey in the Straw.” (Photo/Burton Stuttman)

A Myrtle Avenue home honors the holiday. (Photo/Dan Woog)

Police Chief Foti Koskinas greets a young fan on the parade route. (Photo/Marshall Kiev)

Patriot and noted artist Miggs Burroughs marches with the Westport flag — designed, for Westport’s 150th birthday in 1986, by himself. (Photo/Beth Devoll)

The red, white and blue was evident in flags … (Photo/Doris Ghitelman)

… and everywhere else. This is RTM member Andrew Colabella.

Crowd Sourcing Our Memorial Day Parade

The Memorial Day parade is one of Westport’s favorite town events.

Everyone has a favorite spot to watch from. Everyone has a favorite band, float or marcher to photograph.

But why share them only with a few hundred dear pals, casual acquaintances and random how’d-they-get-on-my-list Facebook “friends”?

Tomorrow, let all of Westport see “your” Memorial Day parade. Send a few (not all!) of your photos to “06880” (email: dwoog@optonline.net). Deadline: noon. Please include brief identification, if needed, and of course your own name.

I’ll post some (not all!) in the afternoon.

And be creative! We want special photos, for our special parade.

The start of the parade. Send us your photos tomorrow!