Tag Archives: COVID vaccine

Roundup: Holiday Stroll, Kids’ Vaccine, Larry Aasen …

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New merchants are signing up every day for “06880”s first-ever Holiday Stroll.

It’s next Saturday (December 11), 4 to 7 p.m., downtown.

Staples’ elite Orphenians will sing. Don Memo will provide hot apple cider, on their patio. There’s face painting for kids, and an ugly sweater contest for everyone.

Santa will hang out by Savvy + Grace. He’ll pose for photos with kids, who can also drop off self-addressed letters to him. They’ll be mailed back, with a personal note.

Among the special shopping offerings:

  • 20% off at Allison Daniel Designs (Sconset Square) and WEST.
  • Free topaz or pyrite crystal at Age of Reason.
  • Something special from Franny’s Farmacy.
  • Garlic knots at Joe’s Pizza.
  • Silk mask giveaway at Calico.
  • Spend $150-$250, get 10% off. Spend $250-$500, get 15% off. Spend $500 or more, get 20% off at Kerri Rosenthal.
  • Sorelle Gallery offers festive beverages to sip while browsing artwork, plus a giveaway. Sign up for their email list and select a free print, while supplies last.
  • A free gift to children who stop by The Toy Post between 4 and 6 p.m. Saturday (they close at 6).
  • Buy one, get 1/2 off of Whip Salon brand products
  • 20% off all holiday items at Westport Book Shop.
  • Adult holiday beverages and 10% off a full-price purchase to anyone mentioning the “06880” blog at Nic + Zoe.
  • Hot chocolate at Le Rouge ChocolatesRye Ridge Deli and Winfield Street Coffee.
  • Hot chocolate and holiday treats at The Fred Shop.
  • 1 free health and wellness coaching session from Dark Horse Health and Wellness (Playhouse Square; stop by or call 203-349-5597).

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Meanwhile, earlier next Saturday — from 10:30 a.m. to noon — Westport Book Shop sponsors its own first-ever Winter Family Fest. It’s on Jesup Green, right across from our favorite used book store.

Kids will enjoy snowflake-themed crafts, games and story reading (indoors!). There’s hot chocolate and goodies for all too, courtesy of The Porch @ Christie’s.

The Family Fest takes place on Jesup Green, across from Westport Book Shop.

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Yesterday’s second COVID vaccine clinic for 5-to-11-year-olds was another hit.

Kids and their parents poured into the Staples High School fieldhouse, for their second dose. Westport Weston Health District, school district and Westport Community Emergency Response Team personnel handled the crowd efficiently. Youngsters were excited to receive another jab. (Their parents were too.)

One protester stood near the entrance. Whitney Krueger (photo below) held signs reflecting her belief that not enough information has been provided about the vaccine.

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Today is Larry Aasen’s 99th birthday.

He heads any list of great Westporters — and not just because his last name is first.

A World War II veteran and Westport resident since the 1950s, he’s had a long, distinguished career serving our town, in politics and many other ways. In 2018, Larry was the Memorial Day grand marshal.

He’s also the author of 4 books about his beloved home state, North Dakota.

Larry’s wife, his beloved Martha, died in October 2020. She was 90. They had been married for 66 years.

I know all of Westport joins me in wishing Larry Aasen a wonderful 99th birthday!

Larry Aasen, with his books. (Photo and hat tip/Dave Matlow)

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The inaugural Chris Frantz Emerging Artists concert — produced by the Westport Library and Westport Weston Chamber of Commerce — was a hit.

Last night, 200 music lovers enjoyed Lulu Lewis and The Problem with Kids. The next concert will be announced soon.

The Problem with Kids, at the Westport Library’s Trefz Forum last night.

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For 2 months, Netflix has been filming “Mr. Harrigan’s Phone,” all around the area. The Stephen King thriller stars Donald Sutherland and Jaeden Martell.

The most recent site was Sherwood Island State Park, by the old stables. Intrigued beach-goers spotted tents, trailers and lights near the wood last week.

Preparing to shoot “Mr. Harrigan’s Phone.”

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“Extraterrestrial Life: Are We the Sharpest Cookies in the Jar?”

That’s the provocative title of the Westport Astronomical Society’s next virtual lecture. Harvard professor Avi Loeb speaks via Zoom (click here) and YouTube (click here) on December 21 (8 p.m.).

PS: No one know the answer. But I do know this: If we were the smartest beings in the universe, we wouldn’t have to ask.

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Chris Robison — noted musician, teacher, gay rights activist and a longtime Westporter — died this week. He was 73.

Born Harold Alton Meyer in Wellesley, Massachusetts, Chris made his mark in the New York City rock ‘n’ roll scene of the 1970s as a member of the New York Dolls, Elephant’s Memory, Steam and Stumblebunny. He was also a music teacher here for over 30 years.

Chris recorded with John Lennon, Keith Richards, Papa John Phillips and Gene Simmons.

With Elephant’s Memory he toured with Aerosmith, Rare Earth and Billy Preston, and played a Circle Line tourist boat gig — hosted by the Hell’s Angels — with Bo Diddley and Jerry Garcia.

The New York Dolls toured Japan with Jeff Beck and Felix Pappalardi. A crowd of 55,000 jammed Tokyo Baseball Stadium to hear them play. Click here for a longer “06880” story on Chris’ musical exploits.

His family says, “His relentless passion for artistic expression and civil rights will be treasured for years to come.”

Chris is survived by sons Dexter Scott of Brooklyn and Tiger Robison of Laramie, Wyoming; sisters Laurel Meyer of Wellesley, Wendy Woodfield and Marilee Meyer of Cambridge, Massachusetts; brother Bruce Meyer of Camden, Maine, and 3 grandchildren.

A memorial service is set for this Tuesday (December 7) at MoCA Westport, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Chris Robison

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If every business was as well landscaped as Tiger Bowl — well, they’d all be featured on our “Westport … Naturally” page!

(Photo/Ellen Wentworth)

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And finally … Chris Robison led quite a life (see his obituary above). We honor him here with these videos.

He was not in “Steam” when they recorded their signature (and only) hit (in Bridgeport). The band did not even exist; “Steam” was just studio musicians.

But the label wanted a tour. Chris joined the group that played 28 states, in a  grueling 3-week tour of 1-night stands, TV shows and festivals. They shared the bill with Bob Seger and MC5, among others. “Steam” played all original material; the only obligation was to start and end each set with …

His next gig — with Elephant’s Memory — included this 1974 song:

Then it was on to the New York Dolls. They were a key influence on later punk, new wave and glam metal groups like the Ramones, Blondie and Talking Heads.

Later Chris formed his own band, Stumblebunny, which toured the UK and Germany with the Hollies.

He recorded solo, too.

Thanks for the music and the memories, Chris!

Roundup: COVID Ornaments, Carissa Schumacher, Holiday Market

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Marley Brown is an enthusiastic, creative junior at Staples High School. Her most recent project: designing a holiday tree ornament to commemorate the development and distribution of COVID vaccines. It can hang for years to come, a reminder of the trials and triumphs of the global pandemic.

She and her family spend nights and weekends sticking labels on vials, stuffing plastic baubles, and tying ribbon to create the cute decorations. They are available with Pfizer, Moderna or generic labels.

Marley has already sold hundreds of ornaments all across North America, via Etsy, Facebook and Amazon.

She’s earning money. But she’s paying it forward. Marley donates some of her profits to the Ehlers Danlos Society. She and her mother suffer from the genetic connective tissue disease, which makes her joints prone to injuries and dislocations.

Click here to purchase ornaments — and help find a treatment for EDS.

One of Marley Brown’s COVID vaccine ornaments.

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I stopped reading the New York Times story about a California spiritual adviser who receives messages from the dead after the 3rd paragraph (when I learned she charges $1,111 an hour — she “likes the synchronicity”).

But several “06880” readers read on. They learned — deep in the story — that Carissa Schumacher — the high-priced medium to stars like Jennifer Aniston, Uma Thurman and Andie MacDowell — was raised in Westport.

She was a member of Staples High School’s Class of 2000 (and earned All-FCIAC status as a cheerleader). She went on to Brown University, where she majored in cognitive neuroscience.

After learning of our high school (and college) connection, I re-read the article. It’s actually pretty interesting. Click here to see.

Caarissa Schumacher meditates in the Elfin Forest. (Photo/Michelle Groskopf for the New York Times)

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The Westport Farmers’ Market is all about shopping local. So it’s natural for them to hold a special Holiday Artist Market this Saturday (December 4, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Gilbertie’s Herbs & Garden Center.

“Local artisans don’t experience supply chain issues the way big box stores do,” notes Lori Cochran-Dougall, executive director of the Farmers’ Market. “If there was ever a year to spend, support and give local, this is it.”

The Artist Market takes place in 3 open-air greenhouses, and features a wide array of one-of-a-kind handcrafted gift ideas. Food trucks will be on hand too.

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Longtime Westporter John Washburn died peacefully at his home recently. He was 91.

He was born in Pittsburgh to Dr. Stephen and Lois Fellows Washburn, both educators. He received his BS in industrial management from Carnegie Tech (now Carnegie Mellon) in 1952.

One week after graduation he married his high school sweetheart, Olga Dukewich. They moved to Cleveland, where John started his career with Standard Oil of Ohio.

They brought their young family to Westport in 1968, when John joined Xerox Education Group in Stamford as a vice president. Over the course of his career John held senior executive positions with Xerox, Scovill, Mott and GenRad.

In retirement, John served on the board of directors of Physicians Health Services, and as a consultant to the Eastern Companies. He spent many hours dedicated to his beloved Westport community, including as treasurer of both Greens Farms Church and the Westport Historical Society, as a member of the Westport Schools Building Planning Committee and the Westport Conservation Commission, and as a volunteer with the Y’s Men, Westport Library, and at the polls on election days.

John’s greatest joy and accomplishment was his family. He was a devoted husband, father and grandfather who enjoyed life. John loved to sail and kayak in the waters around Westport. He played tennis and golf, swam, and took daily walks in his neighborhood.

He especially loved traveling with Olga to Europe and Asia, and visiting their children and grandchildren. For years John and Olga hosted a spring gathering for their children and grandchildren in Sanibel, Florida.

John is survived by his wife of 69 years, Olga; their children Pamela Washburn (David Boyers) of Los Altos, California, Janice Trentacosti (Charlie) of Austin, Texas; John S. Washburn of Carmel, Indiana, and grandchildren Michelle, Michael, Jordan, JB, Julia, Anabelle and Sophia.  He is also survived by his sister Carolyn Shields of Staunton, Virginia, brother Alan of Monterey, California, and many nieces and nephews.

Services were held at Greens Farms Church. Donations in John’s memory can be made to Westport EMS.

John Washburn

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This handsome guy posted near Longshore for today’s “Westport … Naturally” feature.

He almost blended in with the scenery. That’s the idea, right>

(Photo/Elisabeth Levey)

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And finally … today in 1982, Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” was released worldwide.

Yes, the best-selling record album in history — nearly twice the sales of AC/DC’s 2nd-place “Back in Black” — is now 39 years old.

 

Roundup: 3rd Moderna, Modern Thermometer, Polestar EVs …

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The Westport Weston Health District will host a “3rd dose” Moderna vaccine clinic — for moderately and severely immunocompromised people — on September 10 (1 to 4 p.m., Senior Center).

Appointments can be scheduled here. Bring your vaccination card to the appointment.

The CDC’s additional dose recommendation includes people who have:

Been receiving active cancer treatment for tumors or cancers of the blood

Received an organ transplant and are taking medicine to suppress the immune system

Received a stem cell transplant within the past 2 years, or are taking medicine to suppress the immune system

Moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency

Advanced or untreated HIV infection

Active treatment with high-dose corticosteroids or other drugs that suppress an immune response.

To learn more, speak with your healthcare provider. Click here for the CDC website.

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Polestar2 — an all-electronic vehicle — is giving test free test drives to the public. From now through Sunday (11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.), they’re doing it at Bedford Square.

If you’ve never driven a fully electric vehicle, this is a great. chance. Everyone is welcome — so long as you have a driver’s license!

Polestars, at Bedford Square.

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On Wednesday, Bob Weingarten went to Town Hall, for house research.

Usually he signs in at the front desk, and heads to the Town Clerk’s office. This time, he was asked for a temperature check — and to do it himself.

There’s a device, just inside the main door. Stand in front, and get a readout.

I haven’t been in Town Hall in months. I don’t know if this is new and noteworthy, or not news. It could be cool — or a story like George H.W. Bush’s surprise at how a supermarket scanner works.

You be the judge. I’m just passing along Bob’s photo.

(Photo/Bob Weingarten)

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2003 Staples High School graduate Jesse Levin owns the Readiness Collective — an emergency training club and outfitter in Norwalk. Earlier, he opened a pop-up shop in Bedford Square.

After the chilling news from Afghanistan, Jesse turned the Collective into am ad hoc volunteer emergency operations center, to facilitate emergency evacuation efforts.

We have turned our training club, The Readiness Collective into an ad hoc volunteer emergency coordination operations center to facilitate efforts under way for emergency evacuations in Afghanistan.

Professional logistics and disaster response experts on site help guide volunteers on how to contribute. They’re tied in with working groups on the ground, and assisting from abroad.

Recent efforts include the expatriation of 20 targeted Afghan nationals and their families to Uganda, critical medical advice provided to parents of a young girl injured by a tear gas canister and unable to reach medical help, and the development of overland evacuation plans for wide distribution.

Jesse’s Collective needs help and support. “Just bring a computer and a willingness to dig in,” he says.

Offices are in the SoNo Collection (just off I-95 Exit 15 in Norwalk, Level II0. Questions? Email ready@readinesscollective.com, or call 203-275-7297.

Jesse Levin, providing aid in Puerto Rico.

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Sure, Westport Book Shop is the go-to for “pre-owned” (okay, used) books and more — including music.

But they also run an online store. It’s got a selection of new, sealed CDs, in categories from pop and oldies to classical and jazz.

Click here to browse the online selections.

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Three attorneys at Westport-based FLB Law have been named to the Best Lawyers in America list.

The FLB honorees are managing partner Stephen P. Fogerty, and attorneys Alan S. Rubenstein and Leslie E. Grodd.

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Seen the giant sunflower at Viva Zapata?

The restaurant’s Sam O’Mahony explains today’s “Westport … Naturally” photo, growing out of the 2nd-floor window boxes:

“We didn’t plant sunflowers this year! We’re assuming a bird dropped it up there last summer from our garden in the side yard.”

(Photo/Sam O’Mahony)

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And finally … in honor of Town Hall’s new temperature scanner:

 

Roundup: Vaccines, Basso, Butterflies …

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The Connecticut Department of Public Health, Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference and many youth sports organizations are urging all athletes 12 years and older to get vaccinated against COVID.

It’s the best way, officials say, to ensure a healthy, safe and uninterrupted fall season. The organizations suggest that sports groups host and sponsor mobile or other vaccine clinics, to reach students.

They note one major reason to get a shot: people who have been vaccinated do not need to quarantine if exposed to a COVID case, if they are asymptomatic.

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La Plage — the great new restaurant at the Inn at Longshore — opens today. But — as noted in a recent 06880″ story — it’s dinner only for now, Wednesdays through Sundays.

The reason: staffing. Finding help — cooks, servers, dishwashers, bussers, front-of-the-house, you name it — is tough.

It’s a town-wide (and nationwide) problem. Basso is one of Westport’s most popular restaurants. This sign hangs near the outdoor tables, on Jesup Road:

(Photo/Dan Woog)

There’s no such thing as a free lunch. But there may be no lunch at any restaurants, if they can’t find enough help.

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Devil’s Den has reopened.

The popular 1,800-acre Weston preserve — The Nature Conservancy’s largest in Connecticut — closed in the spring of 2020, in the early days of the pandemic. It was overwhelmed with visitors, many of whom parked illegally, brought dogs or stayed past dark.

As of last Sunday, the woodlands, wetlands and rock ledges are open from sunrise to 5 p.m. Click here for more information. (Hat tip: Weston Today)

Devil’s Den

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Speaking of nature: Earthplace did it! They reached their $40,000 fundraising goal — and got a full matching grant for their Animal Hall.

Donations came from regular friends, new donors, neighbors and from afar. A matching grant of every dollar up to $20,000 was key too.

Earthplace officials thank the “amazing, generous and kind” community for its support. The animals join in too (see below!).

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Speaking still of nature: ButtARfly  is inelegantly named.

But it’s a great program, bringing butterflies from the Smithsonian’s Open Access collections to life on a computer screen. Users can learn about butterfly species, add them to a virtual shadow box, and release them into an augmented reality experience for desktop and mobile. There are even different sounds for each specimen.

The Department of Media Arts & Technology at New Mexico Highlands University helped develop the initiative — with the help of 1984 Staples High School graduate Lauren Addario, as audio advisor and content developer.

Click here to enjoy.

Monarch butterfly at Compo Beach. They’re everywhere — including the Smithsonian. (Photo/Jamie Walsh)

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Lotsa nature today. Our “Westport … Naturally” photo shows “2 bees in a bud.” It’s courtesy of Tracy Porosoff, from her garden near Compo Beach.

(Photo/Tracy Porosoff)

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The Y’s Men (and their wise spouses) meet every Tuesday during the summer at South Beach, for food, camaraderie and sunsets. Jon Fox organized the event several years ago.

Yesterday they added a bit of fundraising, for the Hole in the Wall Gang Camp. Peter Nathan solicited donations — and brought in over $1,300.

That’s one more feather in one of Westport’s premier volunteer organization’s cap!

Y’s Men (from left): Mike Guthman, Roy McKay, David Kalman (hot dog supplier), Peter Nathan, Jon Fox, Baxter Urist and Larry Lich. (Photo/Dorothy Fox)

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And finally … our musical interlude usually celebrates birthdays, anniversaries and upbeat events from years gone by. After all, there aren’t too many downer songs about bad things in history. (Okay — “Eve of Destruction.”)

But today is the 47th anniversary of the day 3 civil rights workers — Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman and James Chaney — were found dead in Mississippi. They had disappeared 43 days earlier.

So — at the risk of alienating all my friends from that state — I present Phil Ochs:

Roundup: MoCA, Levitt Pavilion, Vaccine …

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MoCA knows how to throw a party.

Mark your calendars for September 18. Its fall benefit — “The Art of Jazz” — features silent and live auctions, and live music by Grammy Award-winning tenor saxophonist Wayne Escoffery. Guests will be entertained by DJ Mo.

The live auction is hosted by Westporter Dave Briggs, former CNN, NBC Sports and Fox News anchor.

Can’t be there? Bidding opens September 4 for the silent auction, with plenty of items from Westport businesses (and more).

Tickets go on sale to MoCA members July 28, and the general public August 4. Click here for details.

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Speaking of parties: The Levitt Pavilion is hardly a secret. Westporters flock there all summer, for over 50 nights of all kinds of entertainment.

But the covered patio at the top of the amphitheater is one of the town’s hidden jewels. Many days, it’s a great place to congregate and picnic before the show (and away from whatever heat or rain might mar the evening).

Other times, it’s a perfect place for a party. Businesses use it to thank their customers and clients. Organizations use it to show off what they do. Individuals book it for celebrations.

Last night, the Westport Weston Chamber of Commerce celebrated its 90th birthday there. 

The next time you see a group underneath the Levitt roof happily eating, drinking and chatting, think ahead. Yours could be there too.

Westport Weston Chamber of Commerce director Matthew Mandell welcomes members and friends to the Levitt Pavilion party last night.

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Need another reason to be vaccinated against COVID, besides not dying?

Westport Public Schools announced that students and staff who are fully vaccinated will not be required to quarantine — even if they have contact with someone who tests positive.

Fully vaccinated individuals can continue with school, sports and extracurricular activities, regardless of contact. Vaccines are available now to everyone age 12 and older.

Vaccinations started now will allow students to be considered fully vaccinated at the start of the school year.

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How bad was traffic yesterday?

It was “moving” at 16 mph on I-95. But for the many drivers who jumped on Westport’s back roads, it crawled along at 6 pm on Greens Farms Road and Bridge Street.

And that bad light there caused backups on South Compo nearly to Longshore.

(Photo/Tracy Porosoff)

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Susan Garment captured one of our most colorful “Westport … Naturally” photos ever:

(Photo/Susan Garment)

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And finally … in honor of that screenshot of clogged roads above:

Roundup: Staples Players, Waxx Vaxx, Stop Sign …

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Excitement is building in the Staples High School auditorium. The curtain rises this Thursday (and Friday, and twice on Saturday) for the first Staples Players live production in 14 months.

David Ives’ “Words Words Words … and Music” is a truly funny series of mini-plays (with 2 mini-musicals to boot). But even though each audience is limited to only 300 seats, tickets remain.

It it because the show is unfamiliar? Perhaps there’s residual pandemic fear (click here to see the precautions taken). Maybe audiences have forgotten just how professional-quality Players’ acting and music are.

Whatever the reason: The program needs community support. For 63 years, that support has sustained Players, and allowed it to thrive,

Westport cherishes the high school acting troupe. But Westporters may not realize how important it is for all 300 tickets to sell out for each show (Thursday, Friday and Saturday, May 20, 21 and 22 at 7:30 p.m., and May 22 at 2 p.m.).

“Words Words Words … and Music” is laugh-out-loud funny — and very family-friendly. Young audiences, in fact, are the future of Players. They’ve missed a year of shows, so this is the perfect time to bring them back.

Click here for tickets and more information. See you at the show!

Sophie Rossman, Benny Zack and Samanath Webster in “Words Words Words.” Fully vaccinated actors will perform in clear visors. (Photo/Kerry Long)

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The CDC’s head-turning elimination of mask-wearing for vaccinated people raises a good question: “How do I know if someone is vaccinated?”

Staples High School Class of 2009 graduate Mike Bowen has a way.

Bowen — aka Mike Waxx — owns Illroots brand. It branched out from music and videos to apparel and footwear. For a while, it’s offered a custom apparel “Shirt App” in the App Store.

Users can create their own t-shirt or hoodies. They choose the design (including pictures from their iPhone library), then add text and stickers.

So what’s the Waxx/vaxx connection? You can design a shirt like this:

Or — better yet — add a photo of yourself getting your shot.

Then wear it proudly the next time you stroll — mask-less — into Trader Joe’s.

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A 185-foot sailboat drew attention yesterday, as it anchored dramatically in Long Island Sound just beyond the Compo Beach cannons. Several “06880” readers sent photos of the luxurious craft.

Westporters are reminded of the yacht that anchored near there several years ago. Rumors — never confirmed — were that it belonged to Eric Clapton, and he was visiting Keith Richards in Weston.

(Photo/Matt Murray)

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Yesterday’s Roundup included a photo of a handmade poster hung beneath the stop sign on Clinton Road, at Fillow Street.

It said: “Stop! Kids live here!”

Here’s the back story, courtesy of Erika Brunwasser:

“Few stop, many ‘pause,’ and a bunch fly through without even pausing.

“I have 2 little girls, ages 2 and 5. It’s scary and unacceptable. I called the police several times and asked about a flashing light, a speed bump and a sign to monitor speed. I’ve been told none of these are possible.

“They promised me that someone would monitor the area. This happened less a handful of times. The other day I sat in my front yard screaming at people, and realized I needed a better plan.

“I brought in the help of my next-door neighbor, artist Lilie Fortino (who was raised in Westport) to make a sign. We put it up Saturday evening. It made an immediate difference. Everyone has stopped (if only to glance at the beautiful sign — that’s fine with me). It worked.”

It shouldn’t take a sign and a stop sign to get drivers to stop roaring through residential neighborhoods (or anywhere else).

But if that’s what it takes — we’ll take it.

Lilie Fortino and her 1-year-old. Erika Brunwasser and her children. SLOW DOWN!

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Speaking of yesterday’s Roundup: It also included mention that Sarah “Fergie” Ferguson would read The Sly Fox of the Mind — a children’s book by Westporters Brooke Olstein and Lee Scharfstein — on her YouTube channel, “Story Time with Fergie and Friends.”

Click below to watch. It’s a wonderful book — made even greater when read in the Queen’s English.

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Speaking of books: Financial journalist and author Michael Lewis will be interviewed by noted former New York Times writer Lisa Belkin.

Lewis’s newest book, The Premonition: A Pandemic Story follows 3 main characters – a biochemist, public health worker and federal employee – as they confront COVID, and find that the response from the US government is woefully inadequate.

The event is June 15 (7 p.m.). Click here to register.

Michael Lewis

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Speaking of entertainment: This is a week of animated adventures and classic comedies at the Remarkable Theater.

The Imperial Avenue drive-in features:

  • “Zootopia” (Wednesday, May 19, 7:45 p.m.)
  • “Minions” (Friday, May 21, 8 p.m.)
  • “Happy Gilmore” (Saturday, May 22, 8:30 p.m.)

Click here for tickets, and more information.

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The Westport Woman’s Club’s 6th annual Art Show this Saturday and Sunday (May 22-23, 2 to 6 p.m.) features an all-star list of 14 area artists. They include Nina Bentley, Amy Bock, Trace Burroughs, Susan Fehlinger, Judith Orseck Katz, Tom Kretsch, Susan Leggitt, Kerry Long, Michael Ledner, Carole McClintock, Bernard Perry, Jon Puzzuoli, Katherine Ross and Jo Titsworth.

Plus light snacks and wine, of course. It would not be an art show without them.

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Everyone at Staples High School knows Laura Blair. She runs the copy machine room, and is a tireless fan of Wreckers sports teams.

She’s also one of STAR’s greatest fundraiser. For years she has participated in the non-profit’s annual Sherwood Island walk. Funds help serve hundreds of area people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

This year’s STAR Walk is virtual. But Laura is working as hard as ever. So far her team has raised over $6,000 — more than half of her $12,000 goal.

“Stars” are just $1 each. Click here to help. To learn more about STAR Lighting the Way, click here.

Laura Blair is a fundraising STAR.

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Today’s “Westport … Naturally” photo is from behind the pro shop, on the Longshore golf course:

(Photo/Tom Lowrie)

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And finally … was Eric Clapton really on that yacht off Compo years ago?

 

Roundup: Food Drive, Westport READS …

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The pantry is (nearly) empty.

So Homes with Hope — the umbrella organization for the Gillespie Center, and a much-utilized Community Kitchen — is running a food drive. It’s this Saturday (May 1, 1 to 4 p.m., Gillespie Center, behind Barnes & Noble and Don Memo on Jesup Road).

It’s contactless: Just pull your car up, and pop the trunk.

The most needed items: canned meats (chicken, tuna, salmon, Spam); cold and hot cereals; canned soups and stews; peanut butter and jelly; mayonnaise; pasta sauce, canned vegetables.

In addition, Homes with Hope’s Community Kitchen program is gratefully accepting prepared lunches and dinners, 7 days aw eek. To become a Community Kitchen volunteer, click here. Click here for volunteer guidelines.

NOTE: During COVID, the Gillespie Center and Hoskins Place buildings are closed to the public. Staff serves all meals to shelter guests.

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The Westport Library’s thought-provoking WestportREADS programming continues with virtual events this spring.

Tuesday, May 4 (7 p.m.): Ty Seidule discusses his new book,  Robert E. Lee and Me: A Southerner’s Reckoning with the Myth of the Lost Cause, with Maggie Mudd. He describes how he confronted the racist legacy at the core of his identity, and challenges the persistent myths of the Lost Cause. Click here for information, and to register.

Wednesdays, May 5 and 19, June 2 (7 to 8:30 p.m.): Me and White Supremacy: The Challenge Continues. Small group discussions on Layla Saad’s groundbreaking book. Click here for information, and to register.

Thursday, May 6 (7 p.m.).: The Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till. The Library  hosts a virtual screening of Keith A. Beauchamp’s documentary, followed by a conversation with Beauchamp and the film’s producer, Steven Laitmon. Click here for information, and to register.

Saturday, May 8 (7 p.m.): Beechwood Arts presents the 2nd AMPLIFY Festival at the Westport Library. Black artists present music, song, and theatrical works. Click here for information, and to register.

Tuesday, June 1 (12:30 p.m.): In her book, We Need New Stories: The Myths that Subvert Freedom, Nesrine Malik examines 6 political myths used to deflect and discredit demands for social justice with Catherine Lewis. Click here for information, and to register.

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‌Taylor Lane is a pleasant little road, off Clapboard Hill between Turkey Hill South and Maple South.

It is not to be confused with “Talyor Lane,” which is — well, nowhere, despite what the sign says.

Alan Phillips spotted it the other day on a bike ride.

At least, he says, it’s consistent. It’s misspelled on both sides.

(Photos/Alan Phillips)

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The Connecticut Institute for Communities in Danbury is hosting walk-in clinics for the Moderna vaccine every day this week. Anyone 18 and older who lives or works in Connecticut is eligible.

The location is 132 Main Street, Danbury; weekday hours are 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., and 2 to 3:30 p.m. No appointment is needed.

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Here was last night’s moonrise. It never gets old.

(Photo/Jeanine Esposito)

Old Mill Beach (Photo/Lawrence Zlatkin)

Compo Beach playground (Photo/Tomoko Meth)

From Beachside Avenue (Photo/Karen Weingarten)

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And finally … On this day in 1981, Xerox PARC introduced the computer mouse.

Roundup: Vaccines, Zoning, Schlaet’s Point, Ospreys …

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Not every “06880” reader lives in Westport. Sarathi Roy notes: “New York or New Jersey residents can book COVID vaccine appointments in their home state or in Connecticut.”

Here is New York state information:

A few days ago, “06880” posted a comprehensive list of Connecticut vaccine options, thanks to Sarathi’s HR department. Click here for information on CVS, Walgreens, Yale New Haven Health, Stamford Health and VAMS sign-ups.

In addition to that list, Sarathi adds:

  • Check your town’s website for information and clinics available only to residents. You may be able to register in advance or receive a call for available appointments or excess doses.
  • Connecticut’s  Vaccine Assist Line (877-918-2224) operates 7 days a week, from 8am-8pm. Agents can schedule appointments at state-run clinics. If you call early and are given the chance to leave a message, you should. They accept a certain number of messages each day, then call those people back throughout the day to assist in booking appointments. Once the maximum number of calls for the day has been reached the message option is turned off.
  • You can now search additional locations, including supermarkets and local pharmacies. A great tool to see who is administering the vaccine in your area is Vaccinefinder.org. Search a zip code, make note of the providers nearby, then search for booking websites.
  • Here are a few of the more common ones:
    Rite Aid

ShopRite

Big Y

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Did you miss last night’s webinar on the many housing bills making their way through the state’s General Assembly, and their possible impact on Westport?

Planning and Zoning chair Danielle Dobin gave a comprehensive overview. Our 4 local legislators — Senators Will Haskell and Tony Hwang, and Representatives Jonathan Steinberg and Stephanie Thomas — tackled the pros and cons. Viewers asked questions. It was a wide-ranging, engaging 80 minutes. (And I would say that even if I had not served as moderator.)

It’s now available to watch — or re-watch — at your leisure. Click here for the link.

Everything you wanted to know about zoning — including sewers — and more.

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One of the few positive parts of the pandemic: Many more Westporters have had time to walk.

Because we practice social distancing, we’re not always on the sidewalk. And — as Tammy Barry’s photo of Hillspoint Road at Schlaet’s Point shows — the result is some barren patches where grass once grew.

I’m sure saltwater flooding had something to do with t too.

(Photo/Tammy Barry)

Here’s hoping the town can find some resources to bring this beautiful stretch of waterfront back to what it once was.

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CNN anchor (and Westport resident) Alisyn Camerota’s last day on “New Day” is today. The show was filled with many nice tributes. Yesterday, co-host John Berman started things off (click here to see).

Alisyn is not going very far — just a few hours later. She’ll anchor CNN’s weekday coverage with Victor Blackwell.

Congratulations, Alisyn, on your new gig — and the chance to sleep in a little longer. (Hat tip: Seth Schachter)

Alisyn Camerota

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Today’s osprey report comes courtesy of Chris Swan.

He wants Westporters to know that there are 3 platforms near Sherwood Island State Park.

One is in the saltmarsh behind the Nature Center, midway to the last house off Beachside Common.

The second is in the saltmarsh on the eastern shore of Sherwood Mill Pond, several hundred feet above the Compo Cove homes. It’s visible from the path on Sherwood Island’s western edge, above the fire gate to Compo Cove.

Both platforms are occupied by returning osprey pairs.

A 3rd location can be seen from the saltmarsh shore of the northeastern corner of the Mill Pond, looking west. This was erected last fall. No osprey pair has yet staked their claim.

A 4th platform is at the entrance to Burying Hill Beach, in the marsh across New Creek. Chris has watched it for 10 years, but has never seen it occupied.

He thinks it’s too low. He believes old utility poles make the best platforms — citing the ones at Fresh Market, Longshore’s E,R. Strait Marina, and Gray’s Creek.

Chris should know: He spent his professional career with Eversource.

The newest osprey platform in Sherwood Island Mill Pond. A house on Grove Point is visible behind it. (Photo/Chris Swan)

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Congressman Jim Himes holds a Facebook Live session today (Wednesday, April 7) at 3 p.m. He’ll discuss how constituents can benefit from the American Rescue Plan. Click here to watch live. To watch later, click here.

Congressman Jim Himes

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And finally … on this day in 1940, Booker T. Washington became the first African-American depicted on a US postage stamp.

In November 1944, Booker T. Jones Jr. was born in Memphis. He was named after his father, Booker T. Jones Sr., a high school science teacher — who himself was named in honor of Booker T. Washington, the educator.

 

Roundup: Vaccine, Beach, Tennis …

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Over 100 pharmacies will soon be administering COVID vaccines — and one of them is in Westport.

That’s Achorn Pharmacy, in the Playhouse Square shopping center.

Governor Ned Lamont’s office said the sites will open over “the next several days.”

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Lifeguards won’t be back at Compo Beach until Memorial Day. But right before Easter Weekend, crews were hard at work getting Compo Beach ready for the season.

(Photo/Patricia McMahon)

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For over 20 years, Joseph Oyebog has taught tennis all over Westport.

The former Cameroon Davis Cup player retains strong ties to his homeland. In 1999 he founded the Oyebog Tennis Academy. Westporters have been strong supporters of the project, which provides Cameroonian children with coaching, education and life values.

John McEnroe is a supporter too. He called his friend Yannick Noah. After the French star visited OTA in February, a video went viral.

But money is tight. The annual fundraiser at Intensity was canceled by COVID — for the second straight year.

Board members — many of whom live in Westport — are searching for a corporate sponsor, as well as donations of any amount. Click here to help.

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Up on Weston’s Kellogg Hill, Jolantha looks forward to Easter.

(Photo/Hans Wilhelm)

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And finally … on this day in 1964, Beatlemania had taken over America. The lads from Liverpool had the top 5 — five! — songs on Billboard’s Top 100. From #1 on down: “Can’t Buy Me Love,” “Twist and Shout,” “She Loves You,” “I Want to Hold Your Hand” and “Please Please Me.”

But that’s not all. The Beatles had 7 — seven! — other songs on the list: “I Saw Her Standing There” (#31), “From Me to You” (#41), “Do You Want to Know a Secret” (#46), “All My Loving” (#58), “You Can’t Do That” (#65), “Roll Over Beethoven” (#68) and “Thank You Girl” (#79).

Take that, Harry Styles!

COVID Vaccine: Tons Of Websites, Phone Numbers, Tips!

Beginning this Thursday (April 1), all Connecticut resident and employees 16 and older are eligible to schedule a COVID-19 vaccine appointment. Supplies are increasing; more locations and appointments are added weekly.

Alert — and helpful — “06880” reader Sarathi Roy got a ton of info from her company’s very caring HR department, here in Fairfield County. It’s the most comprehensive list I’ve seen.

He asked me to pass it along. Feel free to forward widely to others!

NOTE TO READERS BETWEEN 16-45 YEARS OLD: Not all sites update their eligibility questions at midnight, but you are able to book appointments starting at 12:01 a.m. Thursday. Select the age eligibility box for 45+, then use your real age and accurate date of birth in the booking process.

If you don’t get an appointment right away, be patient. New appointments are added daily. Patience and persistence pays off.

CVS

  • Use this shortcut link to book appts through CVS: https://www.cvs.com/vaccine/intake/store/covid-screener/covid-qns
  • CVS releases new appointments daily around midnight, and again at 5:30 or 6 a.m. The appointments typically book 3-5 days out.
  • You do not need a unique account to schedule CVS vaccine appointments. And you can book them on behalf of other family members, if you have their information.
  • CVS has many locations administering the vaccine in Connecticut. To widen your search beyond your home zip code or town, use “CT” in the search box to view all locations

Walgreens

  • You must have a Walgreens account to schedule a vaccine appointment. You can register for an account at anytime
  • Use this link to book appts through Walgreens: https://www.walgreens.com/findcare/vaccination/covid-19/location-screening
  • Walgreens releases new appointments daily at 7 a.m. You should be logged into your account and ready to search at that time for fastest results. Appointments are released for 3 days in advance.
  • To widen your initial search area, use “Connecticut” in the first location search. You can narrow to a zip code or town in a later search window.

Yale New Haven

  • The Yale New Haven health system requires a MyChart account for vaccine scheduling. You can register for an account in advance at: https://mychart.ynhhs.org/MyChart-PRD/Authentication/Login
  • Vaccine clinics are being run in Bridgeport, Fairfield, Greenwich, Milford, New Haven, North Haven, New London, Old Saybrook, Orange, Trumbull and Uncasville.
  • You can call 833-275-9644 for help scheduling.

Stamford Health

VAMS

  • VAMS is a federal and state tool for registering and booking appointments. It is not required in Connecticut. You can use it as an option for scheduling, but you do not need to register in VAMS in order to book appointments with any of the above providers.
  • You can register in VAMS around 8 a.m on April 1 for the new eligibility group: https://dphsubmissi.ons.ct.gov/OnlineVaccine/
  • Once registered, you will receive several emails. The first will confirm your registration; the next (from CDC) will ask you to complete your profile in VAMS. Then it will allow you to schedule an appointment at a state-run clinic.
  • Additional information about using VAMS can be found here: https://portal.ct.gov/vaccine-portal/COVID-19-Vaccinations-VAMS-Support

Other

  • Check your town’s website for information and clinics available only to residents. You may be able to register in advance, or receive a call for available appointments or excess doses.
  • Connecticut Vaccine Assist Line (877-918-2224) operates 7 days a week, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Agents can schedule appointments at state-run clinics. If you call early and are given the chance to leave a message, you should. They accept a certain number of messages each day, then call those people back throughout the day to assist in booking appointments. Once the maximum number of calls for the day has been reached, the message option is turned off.
  • Vaccinefinder.org will show which locations in your area are administering which vaccine (Pfizer, Moderna or Johnson & Johnson).