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Tag Archives: Fresh MarketImage
If you’re like me, you’ve probably given little — if any — thought to the enormous amount of food that restaurants and grocery stores throw away every day.
If you’re like Simon Hallgarten and Stephanie Webster though, you have.
The organization — known until this past January as Community Plates — fills a simple, important, why-didn’t-I-think-of-that mission: moving fresh, usable food that would have been thrown away by restaurants, grocers and other food industry sources, to families that desperately need it.
The national Food Rescue US group has a strong local presence. Under Hallgarten and Webster’s leadership, Westport has become a big town for food donors — and as “food rescuers.”
Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods and Fresh Market are longtime donors. Many smaller stores and restaurants participate too.
Right now, 40 Westport volunteers transport food to shelters, kitchens and pantries in Norwalk, Bridgeport and Stamford. Over the past few years, more than 350 Westporters have helped.
Many bring their children on food rescue missions. “It’s an important lesson for our kids who otherwise are sheltered from the harsher side of life, and the struggles that many families go through every day,” Hallgarten — who started his career as a chef — says.
Ziggy Hallgarten — Simon’s son, an All-State soccer goalkeeper and current lacrosse player at Staples — and his younger brother Ollie are food rescuers.
“It’s an easy way to give back to a large community at once,” Ziggy says. “With an hour’s worth of driving, you can change the lives of so many.”
On his first run with his dad 2 years ago, Ziggy was shocked to see some of his favorite foods — perfectly edible — about to be thrown away.
They filled the back of their station wagon, and drove “pounds and pounds of food” from a New Canaan grocery store to a Stamford homeless shelter.
“The locations of my deliveries changed during the couple of years I’ve been a food rescuer,” Ziggy says. “But the priceless smiles of the recipients when I’ve driven up with boxes of food never ceases to amaze me.”
He brought friends on runs too, showing them the feasibility — and ease — of saving otherwise wasted food.
Though Food Rescue US is a volunteer driven (ho ho) operation, there are of course administrative and other costs. So this year’s fundraiser — “Food for All 2017: An Evening to End Hunger” — is very important.
Set for next Wednesday (April 26, 6:30 p.m., The Loading Dock in Stamford), it features over 15 tasting plates from top Fairfield County chefs, along with beer, wine and craft cocktails. Every $1 donated helps cover 20 rescued meals.
Westport sponsors for Wednesday’s fundraiser include Whole Foods, Moffly Media, and the Elizabeth and Joseph Massoud Family Foundation. Fleishers Craft Kitchen and Whole Foods are among the participating food vendors.
“Hunger is an issue that can be fixed,” Simon Hallgarten says. “Food Rescue US’ goal of ending hunger in not a crazy pipe dream. It’s a reality — if we reach critical mass in the next decade.”
In Westport — thanks to so many restaurants, stores and volunteers — we’re almost there.
(For more information on the April 26 “Food for All” fundraiser, including tickets, click here.)
Westport’s favorite winter snowbird has returned home.
Okay. This snowbird is actually an osprey bird.
Alert — and nature-loving – “06880” reader Wendy Crowther spotted the much-loved raptor this morning. He was perched at his usual spot: the nesting platform near Fresh Market.
(He started out here on a utility pole. But in 2014 Eversource — then called CL&P — relocated the nest a few yards away, to avoid short circuits. The original pole now has a black protector, making it unsuitable for nesting.)
So far we haven’t seen his mate. Perhaps this year they traveled separately.
For the past few years, Westporters have marveled at the ospreys that live between Fresh Market and Terrain.
The proud parents now have 2 youngsters, almost ready to leave their high home.
Earlier today, alert reader — and osprey lover — Jo Ann Davidson took a photo of the entire fine-looking family:
Every year like clockwork, swallows return to Capistrano.
Just as regularly, an osprey comes back to Westport.
Specifically, to its tall perch next to Fresh Market.
Yesterday, alert “06880” readers — and avid osprey fans — Wendy Crowther and Jo Ann Davidson both spotted our feathered friend, for the first time since last fall.
Only one was seen. Perhaps its mate was out fishing.
Or just enjoying a fine spring day, back in the town that always welcomes it home.
In the surest sign yet that our long, nightmarish winter is giving way to spring, Westport’s favorite ospreys have returned.
Last year, they nested on a dangerous high pole near Fresh Market. After they caused a power outage in July, CL&P (now Eversource) rerouted an electrical feed, to save the magnificent birds from harm.
In October — after the birds flew south for the winter* — the utility company relocated the nest to a higher utility pole, 150 feet away. This one had fewer wires. The hope was that the ospreys would return to the less dangerous nest this spring.
They did. Today, Jo Ann Davidson observed them, home again for the summer.
*Something all of us should have done.
It looks like the rumors are true.
Both Chipotle and SoulCycle are coming to Compo Acres Shopping Center.
In fact — according to Equity One’s site plan — they’re already there.
As shown below, SoulCycle is located next to Patriot National Bank, at the west end of the shopping center (furthest away from Trader Joe’s). Chipotle is 2 doors away.
Equity One has become a big player on Westport’s commercial real estate scene.
The firm — which owns 135 properties, primarily in New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles and South Florida, and whose mission is to “develop, redevelop and invest in ‘A’ quality retail properties in the most desirable and productive urban markets in the United States” — already owns the Fresh Market shopping center, and the one across the Post Road (think Dunkin’ Donuts).
As “06880” reported yesterday, 4 of the 6 easternmost storefronts in the Fresh Market center are vacant. Nearby Patio.com recently moved, too.
Sources say that Equity One hopes to demolish the old Patio.com and the closed stores, and erect a new building.
Sources add that Equity One also has its eye on the Terrain property.
Now if they can only do something about that long-abandoned Westport House of Pancakes…
Ospreys are not all that have fled the Fresh Market shopping center.
4 of the 6 easternmost storefronts are vacat.
So is Patio.com, which recently decamped for new digs on the site of the old Brook Cafe, across the street from Starbucks.
Is it a sign of a changing economy? Rents that climbed out of whack? Competition from other shopping centers, or other towns?
The good news: There’s plenty of parking.
Take 3 spaces. No one will care.