Tag Archives: Kneads Bakery

Pics Of The Day #2336

Scenes from today’s downpour, and the flash floods that followed …

Post Road …

… and turning out of Playhouse Square … (Photos/Susan Garment)

… and Kneads Bakery (Photo/Michael Chait)

Roundup: Politics, Penny Proskinitopoulos, Police …

The Democratic Town Committee’s endorsed slate of candidates for November’s local election includes familiar names.

And a couple of new looks.

Board of Education chair Lee Goldstein and secretary Neil Phillips, Planning & Zoning Commission vice chair Paul Lebowitz, and Zoning Board of Appeals chair Jim Ezzes will all stand for re-election.

Danielle Dobin — chair of the P&Z — was nominated to run for the Board of Finance. She is in the middle of her current term, so if elected to the BOF would have to resign.

Nancie Dupier is moving from Westport due to a job change, and must vacate her seat on the Board of Finance. Because she made that announcement this week, the DTC must reconvene to interview candidates. A new nominee will be announced soon.


When Dr. Parthena “Penny” Proskinitopoulos took over as the new principal of Coleytown Middle School yesterday, her commute scarcely changed.

For the past 2 years, she’s been an assistant principal at Staples High School, a mile or so south of her new post.

The appointment by superintendent of school Thomas Scarice was approved this week, by the Board of Education.

Proskinitopoulos’ career began in 2006, as a middle school social studies teacher in Fairfield. In 2014 she became a technology integration specialist. She then served one year as an interim assistant principal at Roger Ludlowe Middle School.

At Staples, she earned praise as administrator in charge of the Response to Intervention program. 

Proskinitopoulos earned a BA in psychology from St. John’s University, and a master’s of arts in teaching and 6th year diploma in educational leadership from Sacred Heart University. Her doctorate of educational leadership comes from the University of Bridgeport.

Dr. Penny Proskinitopoulos


Westport Police made no custodial arrests between July 12 and 18.

They issued the following citations:

  • Traveling unreasonably fast: 4 citations
  • Failure to obey traffic control signals: 3
  • Failure to renew registration: 3
  • Distracted driving: 2
  • Operating a motor vehicle under suspension: 2
  • Breach of peace: 1
  • Assault: 1
  • Larceny: 1
  • Engaging police in a pursuit: 1
  • Disorderly conduct: 1
  • Reckless driving: 1
  • Speeding: 1
  • Failure to obey stop sign: 1
  • Operating an unregistered motor vehicle: 1
  • Operating a motor vehicle without a license: 1
  • Improper use of markers, license or registration: 1
  • Improper tinted glass: 1
  • Failure to display lights: 1

One person was arrested for engaging police in a chase.


Speaking of police: the Westport Department and Kneads Bakery Café Mill are partners in “Coffee with a Cop.” It’s next Wednesday (July 26, 8 to 9:30 a.m.), at Kneads on Riverside Avenue.

There are no speeches or agendas — just honest conversations about issues affecting our community,

What? No donuts?!


It’s summertime. But learning never ends.

The Westport Public Schools and Teachers College Reading and Writing Project  at Columbia University are collaborating on 2 virtual sessions, for parents and caregivers. Both provide insights and tips on creating a love of reading and science.

“Fostering Future Scientists: Helping Your Kids Learn About the Natural World” is set for next Tuesday (July 25, 7 to 7:45 p.m., grades K-3; click here to register) and Wednesday, July 26 (7 to 7:45 p.m., grades 3-8; click here to register).

Sure, bees sting. But they do so much more. A free webinar will help kids learn about the natural world.


Where is Westport headed?

It’s an existential question.

And also a literal one.

Robin Frank spotted these dueling signs at Myrtle Avenue and Main Street, near Town Hall:


(Photo/Robin Jaffee Frank)


Westporter Dan Gross is a financial and economic journalist. Edmond Safra has been called “the greatest banker of his generation.”

Last year Gross — who, like Safra, traces his heritage to Syria — wrote “A Banker’s Journey: How Edmond J. Safra Built a Global Financial Network.” It traces the financier’s remarkable journey from Beirut to Milan, Sao Paolo, Geneva and New York.

Yesterday, Maria Maloof — a Lebanese journalist — interviewed Gross. Fellow Westporter Avi Kaner made the introduction.

Check out the translation at the bottom in the video below, to see how the story of the Lebanese Jewish banking titan was shared with the Arab world.


It’s an all-ages “Kaleidoscope.”

The 1-day MoCA Westport exhibition (August 27, 12 to 4 p.m.), features works from “MoCA Gives Back Healing Arts” and Camp MoCA participants.

It’s a celebration of MoCA’s commitment to offer equitable access and meaningful experiences, including employment and access to the arts, to under-resourced community members.

Healing arts classes were led by MoCA instructors. Works reflect participants’ inspiration, joy and deeper connection to the world they experienced through the healing power of art.

Over 200 pieces of camper artwork will be displayed. All are being created at this summer’s camp.

There is a suggested donation of $10 per adult. For more information on MoCA Gives Back, Camp MoCA or Kaleidoscope, click here.

MoCA campers. (Photo/Isabelle Engelson)


You never know what you’ll see in our “Westport … Naturally” feature.

Today it’s cattails, at Grace Salmon Park:

(Photo/Johanna Keyser Rossi)


And finally … in honor of the mixed messages at Myrtle and Main (story above):

(Like clockwork, here’s today’s Roundup. If you appreciate this daily feature — or any other part of “06880” — please consider a tax-deductible contribution. Just click here. Thank you!)

Fred Cantor: Seeing Westport Through SoCal Eyes

“06880” readers know Fred Cantor as an avid commenter, with a keen eye for Westport’s history, and a passion for its present and future. He’s also a multi-talented writer, movie and play producer, and attorney

Fred Cantor (Photo/Lynn Untermeyer Miller)

The 1971 Staples High School graduate has had health issues, so for the past few years he and his wife Debbie have spent winters in Southern California. They were there last year, when the pandemic (and his doctor’s advice) turned a few months’ stay into more than a year. It was the longest time he’d been away from Westport since moving here at age 10.

After 17 months, Fred and Debbie are back. Here’s what he sees.

The first thing that grabbed our attention coming off Exit 17 was the empty train station parking lot. We had read about the large number of people working at home, but that was an eye-opener.

Yet then, almost instantly, there were old welcome sights: the approach to the distinctive Cribari Bridge — with early signs of spring (daffodils in full bloom) — and just past the bridge, 19th-century homes with yards fronted by quintessential New England stone walls or wrought-iron fences.

Daffodils near the William F. Cribari Bridge.

I don’t think Debbie and I crossed a bridge over a river once in our area of SoCal— and certainly not a bridge on the National Register of Historic Places — even before the pandemic, when we did more driving. Southern California has much natural beauty, but in the area of Orange County where we rented, numerous rivers and streams are certainly not among them.

And historic 19th century homes — well, they did not exist there. Some of those towns were created in the 1960s or later.

Handsome home on Bridge Street.

Westport’s historic homes, stone walls, rivers and meandering tributaries — such as can be seen along Ford Road — are among the sights I missed the most.

The scene along Ford Road.

Forsythias blooming all around Westport were another “welcome home” sign; that too was much rarer in our part of SoCal.

Forsythia blooms outside a 1930 Imperial Avenue home.

Heading to the beach, I had to stop at Joey’s By The Shore at its new location. I hoped to see Joey after all this time. but he’s away.

Back in business: Joey’s by the Shore.

That reinforced my feelings that, while many of us embrace longtime local establishments, it is largely the proprietors we really have such warm feelings about. That was certainly true when the Nistico family switched its restaurant operation from the Arrow to the Red Barn.

Walking across the street to Old Mill Beach instantly reminded me why that has long been a personal favorite. It’s not only beautiful; it’s often serene, as exemplified by a couple quietly reading their iPad and newspaper on a nearly empty beach.

Old Mill Beach.

When I was away I stayed in touch with Westport friends via email, texts, social media, occasional phone calls and Zoom.

I followed local Westport news via “06880,” so in certain respects I didn’t feel 3,000 miles away from what was happening here.  By contrast, I vividly recall the summer of 1964. I was at camp in Pennsylvania, and learned of my Little League team winning the Minor League World Series a week after the fact, when I received a letter from my parents with a clipping from the Town Crier.

The most difficult thing about being so far away was not being able to see our 93- and 95-year-old moms. Daily phone calls and occasional FaceTime calls didn’t quite suffice.

So that first weekend back in town generated a teary reunion hug between Debbie and her mom. It was coupled with a culinary discovery: delicious mini-babka at the new Kneads Bakery, which we all enjoyed at their outdoor dining area.

Fred’s wife Debbie Silberstein, Debbie’s mother and aide, at Kneads Bakery. (All photos/Fred Cantor)

That first weekend back also generated our first experience with traffic. At 4 p.m. Saturday there was a big backup on Bridge Street toward Saugatuck. Traffic crawled on 95, spilling over onto local streets.

Other than on the single-lane canyon road leading to Laguna Beach, we never experienced major backups in SoCal. The main local roads have 3 lanes in each direction — with an additional two left-hand turn lanes at major intersections.

During that traffic tie-up on Bridge Street I witnessed an “only in Westport” moment (and something I had never seen in close to 60 years here). Moving right by the traffic on a highly unusual mode of transit were two cyclists on penny-farthings (you can look it up🤨).

Seeing that, I knew for sure I was back in Westport!