There are (at least) 2 sides to every story.
A recent “06880” Roundup item about an advertising sign on a utility pole brought a ringing defense of the company.
Luciano Paving, the writer noted, is a long-time, very generous local business.
They donate to Westport PAL, and supply the equipment that keeps the Longshore skating rink clear. They bring equipment to the Touch-a-Truck event at the Imperial Avenue parking lot, and provide trucks and a car for the Westport Woman’s Club Memorial Day float.
Sam Luciano — former Westport chief of police, for whom the Saugatuck train station park is named — was Tim’s cousin. Every year, Tim sponsors a golf tournament in Sam’s name at Longshore.
More broadly, contractors are an asset to the town. In weather emergencies, they plow snow, clear roads and do whatever else is needed.
We would not be where we are without contractors like Luciano — a family that traces its heritage back to Antonio Gilbertie, founder of the floral business over 100 years ago.
Winfield Street Coffee has come a long way from its start, 98 years ago in East Norwalk.
Under current owner Breno Donatti, there are locations in Westport (the old Art’s Deli, just over the Ruth Steinkraus Cohen Bridge) and Stamford; kiosks in the Croton-Harmon and Rye train stations, plus Q line subway stops in Manhattan, and 2 in Naples, Florida.
Now — in addition to coffee (f course), Italian deli sandwiches, healthy bowls and salads, and fresh pastry.
Donatti is not sitting still. Culinary director Chris Gonzalez has designed an expanded menu, adding side dishes like bacon mac & cheese, roasted brussels sprouts with hot honey and crispy shallots, fries options like (sweet potato wedges, polenta fries, home fries), and homemade baked goods.
Coffee director Caleb MacPherson is implementing new drinks and roasting beans.
I know all this because Westport’s own Stephanie Webster covered it in her great CTBites blog. Click here for the full story (and excellent food photos).
PS: Click on the “Restaurants” tab at the top of “06880,” for details on Winfield Street Coffee and many more.
“Ain’t Misbehavin'” — a revival of the Broadway show celebrating jazz pioneer Fats Waller’s career, while exploring the “masks” he and his musicians wore while performing for white audiences — opens tonight at the Westport Country Playhouse. It runs through April 29.
Among the special events:
Taste & Chat (tonight, Tuesday, April 11, 6 p.m.): Wine and cheese with Marcella Monk Flake, of The Monk Center for Academic Enrichment and Performing Arts, and co-founder of Monk Youth Jazz and STEAM Collective.
Pride Night (Thursday, April 13, 6 p.m.): Pre-show cocktails for the LGBTQ community and friends.
Black Excellence Night (Friday, April 14, 6:30 p.m.): Free pre-show celebration for the Black and Brown community.
For ticket information, click here. For more on these special events, scroll down on that page.
Al Jaffee — the Mad magazine cartoonist best known for his clever fold-in comics, on the back page — died yesterday in New York. He was 102.
His obituary is fascinating reading.
Especially fascinating is this Westport connection: His 2010 biography, “Al Jaffee’s Mad Life,” was written by local writer Mary-Lou Weisman.
A 2010 story explains:
He has always had a soft spot … for Mary-Lou Weisman, a 72-year-old author from Westport, Conn., who used to own a summer place near his (in Provincetown, Massachetts). Not only did she appreciate his eccentricities but she also donated a stupid question to his collection. (For that, she thanks the sister who demanded to know, “Where do you keep your ice cubes?”)
Their friendship has led to a collaboration that should cheer anyone with a secret affinity for Mad magazine. Written by Ms. Weisman, “Al Jaffee’s Mad Life” lays bare in harrowing yet often riotous detail how a Southern boy, twice uprooted by his mother to Lithuanian shtetls on the eve of World War II, grew up to become a tireless satirist for some of America’s cheekier magazines. HarperCollins published the book on Tuesday under its It Books imprint.
Readers will also be treated to 74 original drawings by Mr. Jaffee, nearly twice what he had pledged. “He was on fire,” Ms. Weisman said.
It’s budget season.
So in this week’s “What’s Next in Weston” podcast, 1st Selectwoman Sam Nestor discusses her town’s projections — and urges residents to participate
Click below to listen, courtesy of the Y’s Men of Westport and Weston.
Save the date!
The VFW Joseph J. Clinton Post 399 charity golf tournament is June 12, at Longshore.
Individuals, businesses and organizations can support the local club by sponsoring a veteran (or a vets’ foursome) to play.
Other ways to help: donating prizes, registering to play, buying a tee sign, even being a title sposnor.
For more information, contact tournament chairs Ed Cribari (203-451-0644; firstname.lastname@example.org) or Patty Kondub (203-767-3778; email@example.com).
Speaking of the VFW:
Ever-popular pianist Chris Coogan headlines this week’s Jazz at the Post (Thursday, April 13; shows at 7:30 and 8:45 p.m.; dinner at 7 p.m.).
Chris grew up here, and the area is home base for his multi-faceted career. He is a world-class jazz pianist; an in-demand accompanist for singers; a powerhouse Gospel pianist, choir director and bandleader; an inspiring educator, and an all- around good guy.
He’s joined this week at the VFW by bassist John Mobilio and drummer Joe Corsella.
Reservations are highly recommended: JazzatthePost@gmail.com.
Starting yesterday, Church Lane will be closed to through traffic.
The move — begun during COVID, and continued in following years thanks to the popularity of outdoor dining and leisurely strolling — continues through November 6.
The Y’s Women spaced out yesterday.
Marty Yellin — a Ph.D. in engineering, who helped design and manage the Hubble Space Telescope — explained the differences between it and the James Webb Telescope.
His photographs, we are told, were “out of this world.”
Martha Stewart returned to Westport recently.
She sampled Arogya Holistic Healing & Tea’s teas, and shared recipes. The event was filmed for her TV show, “Martha Cooks!”
Click here, for the full episode on Roku.
Judith Katz’s Harvest Commons magnolia tree serves beautifully as today’s “Westport … Naturally” image.
And finally … Happy Barbershop Quartet Day!
(Stay “in tune” with “06880” — and please support what we do. Click here — thank you!)
Andrew Colabella (front row, center) and friends picked up trash last weekend at the Greens Farms train station.
Just after 6 p.m. yesterday, the Westport Fire Department, Police Department and EMS responded to a multi-vehicle crash in front of 40 Bridge Street.
One driver was trapped, and required extrication with hydraulic tools. The patient was transported to the hospital.
No other injuries were reported. Be careful out there!
Bridge Street accident. (Photo courtesy of Westport Fire Department)
Earlier in the day, the Fire Department responded to a kitchen fire on Berndale Drive.
It began when an electric stove knob was bumped accidentally. That activated a burner, which set fire to items on the stove.
“Do not store items on your stovetop,” the department emphasizes.
Berndale Drive kitchen fire. (Photo courtesy of Westport Fire Department)
Pianist Chris Coogan is a local legend.
He grew up here. He has made Fairfield County his home — and home base for his multi-faceted music career.
Coogan is a world-class jazz pianist; a sensitive and popular accompanist for singers; a powerhouse Gospel pianist, choir director and bandleader; a highly effective and inspiring educator, and an all-around good guy.
Saxophonist Greg “The Jazz Rabbi” Wall met Coogan shortly after moving to Westport almost 10 years ago. They share a deep spiritual attachment to American music that digs deep into its roots.
Coogan and the Jazz Rabbi join bassist Boots Maleson and drummer Jim Royle for this Thursday’s “Jazz at the Post” (January 12, shows at 7:30 and 8:45 p.m.; $15 cover; dinner at 7 p.m.).
Reservations are strongly recommended: JazzattthePost@gmail.com.
Greg Wall and Chris Coogan.