Tag Archives: Angela Simpson

Roundup: Yankee Doodle’s Logo, Compo Men’s Hoops, Felicia’s Salon …

The Yankee Doodle Fair is back.

The event — a decades-long herald of the end of school — was missing from the June calendar for 2 years, due to COVID.

It returned last September. Now it’s back in its familiar slot: This Thursday and Friday (6 to 10 p.m.), Saturday (1 to 10 p.m.) and Sunday (1 to 5 p.m.), at the Westport Woman’s Club on Imperial Avenue.

Also familiar: the Yankee Doodle Fair logo.

What most Westporters don’t know is that the carousel horse was designed more than 30 years ago by Angela Mata. Her mother chaired the event, for the sponsoring Westport Woman’s Club.

Growing up here, she was an avid fairgoer. She graduated from Staples High School, returned here, brought her own children — and is now a well-respected art teacher, at her alma mater.

Like the carousel on Angela’s logo, whatever goes around, comes around.


Also back, after a pandemic break: Westport Parks & Recreation’s men’s summer basketball league, at Compo Beach.

The popular weeknight event runs for 8 weeks (June 20 to August 16). Teams can have a maximum of 15 players.

Games are Mondays and Tuesdays, at 7 and 8 p.m. The fee is $900 per team. To register or for more details, email mrobbins@westportct.gov.

Compo Beach basketball court. (Photo/Fred Cantor)


Speaking of (much younger) sports:

The Twins won the Westport Baseball “A” League (3rd grade) championship last weekend. Congrats, guys!

The “A” League champion Twins.


in 2019, Felicia Catale — a long-time hair stylist in Westport (Tony’s, Karen & Frank’s, Austin Rolfe) — opened her own salon in Nash’s Plaza on Post Road West.

That first year was busy. She worked long hours, on hair and also the business end.

Then came COVID. She scrambled to serve customers, and keep her salon alive.

Finally, the pandemic is easing. She’s back welcoming customers.

Finally too, she had a chance for an official “grand opening.”

A small ceremony — with the big, official ribbon-cutting scissors — was held yesterday. She welcomed her guests — and then, in another long-delayed event, she threw a party for last fall’s Staples High School boys soccer team.

“06880” would say “welcome to Westport,” Felicia. But you’ve been here all along.

Cutting the ribbon at Salon Nash (from left): business consultant Ganesh Gupta, owner Felicia Catale, 1st Selectwoman Jen Tooker, Westport Weston Chamber of Commerce director Matthew Mandell, Staples High School soccer tri-captain Bruno Guiduli.


Yesterday’s “06880” Roundup included a photo of “Rev. Hezekiah Ripley.” The long-ago, long-serving Green’s Farms Church pastor showed up (looking very much like a 21st-century Westporter wearing a costume) at Sunday’s rededication service. The 1789 church on Hillandale Road has undergone an extensive renovation.

Rev. Ripley was not the only dignitary taking part in the festivities. Senator Richard Blumenthal was there too, watching former 1st Selectman Jim Marpe cut the ceremonial ribbon. A Green’s Farms parishioner, he was standing in for 1st Selectwoman Jen Tooker, who was out of town.

From left: Capital campaign co-chair Tony Menchaca, Sen. Richard Blumenthal, former 1st Selectman Jim Marpe, capital campaign co-chair Diane Parrish, Senior Minister Jeff Rider. (Photo/Regina Madwed, Capitol Photo).


Also this past weekend: Norwalk’s Copps Island Oysters was the place to be. A sold-out event raised important funds for Harbor Watch, the clean water research program of Earthplace.

Scientists provide data and field expertise to safeguard Connecticut waterways, educate residents about watershed issues, and train volunteers and student interns through hands-on research.

Plus, the oysters were delicious!

The Earthplace team, hanging out at the Harbor Watch fundraiser (from left): LaWanza Holder, Brenna Felt, Marisa Olavarria, Mary Donato, Nikki Spiller, Sophie Pollmann, Jess Mantzaris, Kasey Tietz, executive director Tony McDowell,


Temple Israel’s first “Shabbat on the Beach” of the season is also the synagogue’s “Pride Shabbat.”

Temple officials say: “Together, we will send our clear message of love and acceptance for ‘kol yoshvei tevel’ — all who dwell on earth. BYO beach chairs and rainbows!”

A Westport beach pass is not necessary. Tell the gate attendant you’re part of the  Temple Israel service.


Speaking of Pride Month: The lineup is set for this Friday’s Pride Cabaret at the Westport Library.

Comedian/activist Mina Hartong hosts Marvin Pittman, Sarah Ferro, Julie Loyd, Danielle Poyser and Staples High School senior Ellery Bodell.

Doors open on June 17 at 6:15 p.m. for cocktails, and mingling with local LGBTQ+ organization. The show begins at 7 p.m.

The cabaret is free. To register, click here. For more information, click here.

Cabaret emcee Mina Hartong.


Sure, bunnies are supposed to hop (and reproduce).

But this one stood still long enough for Jamie Walsh to snap a great “Westport … Naturally” close-up.

(Photo/Jamie Walsh)


And finally … today is Flag Day. Long may she wave, proudly and brave!

(“06880” relies on reader support. To donate, please click here.)

0*6*Art*Art*0 — Week 11 Gallery

Week 11 of our online gallery features another wide variety of local Westport artwork.

Watercolors, charcoal, photos, videos, even furniture-making — it’s all here in our regular Saturday feature.

Each week, you show off your creativity and spirit; each week, we gain insights into your COVID-filled moods.

Keep sending your work. Professional, amateur, old, young — we want your paintings, collages, sketches, photos, sculptures, cartoons, whatever. Student submissions are particularly welcome!

The only rule: It must be inspired by, reflective of, or otherwise related to the times we’re going through. Email dwoog@optonline.net.

“Empty Beach” (Martin Howard)

“Staying Strong” (Elizabeth Devoll)

Staples High School art teacher Angela Simpson says, “As part of distance learning, I make demo videos for my students. For the one on how to make a multi-color registered silk screen print using an adhesive film media, I created a print of my beloved dog, Teddy. The print was a hit at home. Now I’ve been ‘commissioned’ by my son to create a version printed on a black hoodie.”

“Backwards and in Heels” (Lawrence Weisman)

Amy Saperstein made this table in her garage workshop. She says, “I must be honest. It is extremely flimsy, and likely to collapse at any moment! I found the white branch in my yard, and had the wood for the top in the garage.”

“The Beach is My Happy Place” (Amy Schneider)

“Not Venice Carnival” (Lisa Weinstein)

“Unconnected Now” (Karen Weingarten)

Susan Lloyd says, “This is Saint Dymphna, an Irish gal with a horrible backstory; patron saint of depression and anxiety. I am not Catholic; I just like saints and their histories, and of course shells.”

A video tribute, from Rob Feakins:

Ann Chernow’s garden, near Main Street. “People walking by feel good seeing these,” she says. (Photo/James Walsh)

Roseann Spengler says, “Under house arrest like Cinderella, I have discovered new friends. Making them masks is more important than making them clothes.”

“Seagulls Above a Watercolor Sky” (Photo/Patricia McMahon)

Harry Moritz’s Humachanical Complex

Harry Moritz spent an entire night constructing a banana-based work of art. His aim was to show the relationship between human consumption, decay, and the seldom-seen world of transportation and mechanics behind it. The piece lasted a day, before the artist dismantled it.

Most of Moritz’s work is more permanent. Using a 1940s-era lathe, plus screws, gears and bushings he creates and his own imagination, the 2010 Staples graduate is forging an identity as a sculptor.

Harry Moritz's lathe.

Harry Moritz’s lathe.

It’s a path few classmates would follow.

A painter during his high school years — inspired by teachers like Camille Eskell, Jonathan Nast and Angela Simpson — Moritz took a gap year after graduation, to travel and work.

As a Pratt Institute sophomore, he walked into a metal shop. Suddenly, he had a new home.

Harry Moritz calls this piece "Pallet Precarity."

Harry Moritz calls this piece “Pallet Precarity.”

“As a sculptor, your art supply store is Home Depot,” he says, describing his fascination with big machines that make precise things. He still draws every night. But much of his day is spent creating sculptures in which all the parts move and mesh.

Moritz calls his work “humachanical.” He examines the infrastructure that supports manufacturing and transportation, which enables society to efficiently produce and transport the objects we need.

Harry Moritz's banana art. It stayed up for just 24 hours.

Harry Moritz’s banana art. It stayed up for just 24 hours.

Moritz says he explores those processes, and their effect on the human condition. “Machines would have no purpose without humans,” he notes.

He learned a lot at Pratt. But he furthered his education at Housatonic Community College’s advanced manufacturing program. Moritz learned how to operate machines, along with math and blueprint reading.

He just landed a job with a New York lighting design and manufacturing company. That will help pay the bills, as he works in his studio building big, artistic contraptions.

Harry Moritz, in his Stamford studio.

Harry Moritz, in his Stamford studio.

Moritz is particularly proud of his lathe. He found it in Massachusetts, through Craigslist.

“It’s the machine that creates other machines,” he explains. “I’m always thinking of how to be creative with it.” Sculpture, Moritz says, “is not just about wood carving. It’s also fabrication and welding.”

(Click below for a video Harry made — that’s him, in a story about lathes.)

Why does he take this tough path?

“I need to express my imagination. I feel I have something to bring to the world.” he says. “I’m not concerned about making money with it. I know I’m lucky. I don’t have to pay rent for my studio.” (He uses his grandmother’s garage, in Stamford.) “I have a job. I’m not starving.”

Like most artists, he would like his work to be in shows and galleries. But he also sets up on the sides of highways and rivers (and, once, in Westport’s Stop & Shop parking lot.) He plans to push his “Downward Spiral” around Wall Street.

Harry Moritz admits he himself is a work in progress. He loves to travel, and though he currently lives and works in Westport, Stamford and New York, he has no idea where he — and his art — will end up.

“Right now though,” he says, “I’m where I need to be.”

(For more information, visit www.harrymoritz.com or email harrymoritz@hotmail.com).