Tag Archives: Minute Man Race

Roundup: Fox News, Teardowns, THC …

Yesterday’s historic $787.5 million settlement by Fox News in its defamation lawsuit was huge news, all over the country. (Except on Fox).

And a big part of that news was due to the work of Dominion Voting Systems’ co-lead attorney, Stephen Shackelford.

The Harvard Law School graduate and former Justice Stephen Breyer’s clerk’s already high reputation in the legal community has skyrocketed.

But in Westport we know him, his wife Stefanie and 4 kids as our neighbors. And in District 8, residents know him as their RTM representative.

On behalf of American democracy: Thank you, Steve!


Yesterday’s “06880” Roundup included 2 homes that fell to the wrecking ball. One was on Roseville Road; the other on South Compo.

Today, Carl Addison Swanson sends a photo of one that has been lovingly restored.

39 Cross Highway — just west of Weston Road — is a house we all pass by often. After years of neglect, it’s gotten a ton of TLC. Today, it looks great.

Known as the Charles Chapman House, this is one of 10 homes that will be honored by 1st Selectwoman Jen Tooker and Westport’s Historic District Commission on May 4 (7 p.m., Town Hall auditorium). It’s one of 4 earning a Preservation Award.

Old Mill Grocery & Deli will receive a Legacy Business Prevention citation. A year ago, a small group of neighbors organized an effort to save the former Elvira’s/Joey’s by the Shore market from probable sale to a develop.

Old Mill Grocery & Deli. (Photo/Matt Murray)

Green’s Farms Church will be cited too, for its extensive renovation.

Green’s Farms Church (Photo/Bob Weingarten)

The other 7 Historic District Commission honorees:

• 35 Post Road West –Davis Taylor House – Preservation
• 276 Main Street – Patrick Rice House – Helen Muller Preservation Award
• 8 Mayflower Parkway – Preservation
• 19 Soundview Drive – Stevens Cottage – Preservation
• 161 Cross Highway – Legacy Business Preservation
• 163 Cross Highway – Excellence in Ongoing Care and Maintenance
• 21 Danbury Avenue – Preservation

19 Soundview Drive – before (left) and after.


Last week, the Westport Police Department conducted unannounced compliance inspections of 12 establishments that sell tobacco products and/or e-cigarettes.

All 12 were found “compliant” with laws regarding sales to anyone under 21.

However, WP Convenience at 1761 Post Road East — in the Westfair Shopping Center, opposite Stop & Shop — was found to have “a large number of illegal vape and THC products for sale,” police say.

“Many of these items did not display the required QR codes and/or were packaged to look like candy. These colorful packages resemble popular candy and snack foods, but their contents often contain high doses of THC, which can cause marijuana toxicity, especially in unsuspecting children.”

Police confiscated the items, along with “a number of canisters of suspected marijuana.” WP Convenience does not have a dispensary license.

Police note: “Westport zoning regulation prohibits all sales of retail (non-medical) cannabis products, including Delta-9 THC and Delta-8.”

Besides WP Convenience, the 12 retailers found compliant with laws about selling tobacco and e-cigarettes to anyone under 21:

  • Merritt Country Store – 337 Main Street
  • Country Deli Store – 332 Wilton Road
  • Sunoco Food Mart – 240 Riverside Avenue
  • Westport Shell – 322 Post Road East
  • Cumberland Farms – 690 Post Road East
  • Wheels – 786 Post Road East
  • Westport Cigar & Vape – 1248 Post Road East
  • Exxon Tiger Mart – 1510 Post Road East
  • Shell Food Mart – 1530 Post Road East
  • Mohegan Smoke Shop – 1803 Post Road East
  • Mercury – 1830 Post Road East

items sold illegally at WP Convenience. (Photo courtesy of Westport Police Department)


Savvy Kings Highway Elementary School parents (and nannies and other caregivers) know that there’s a way to beat the afternoon car pickup line, which can stretch along Post Road West almost to Norwalk:

Just park in Nash’s Plaza, the small shopping center between the school and the animal hospital.

Make your kid a “walker.” He or she walks a few yards to your car, and you’re outta there.

That does not sit well with the merchants there, who see their patrons’ parking spots taken up every afternoon by non-patrons.

Which is why this sign has appeared there:

What’s next? Carvana, across the very dangerous street?

It would be nice if kids could, um, take the bus.

But with the current school day, some of them get home around midnight.


Westport Community Gardens is accepting applications for membership. Limited space is available for new members. It is distributed on a first come, first served basis.

The site, adjacent to Long Lots Elementary School, is a community of people who grow flowers, herbs and vegetables in a sunny, fenced-in (deer-proof) location. Members range age from 5 to 95,

To learn more about the Community Gardens, click here and here. If you’re interested in a plot, click here.

Westport Community Gardens is a true community.


Here’s a sure sign of spring: the 44th annual Minute Man Race is set for Sunday, April 30.

As usual, Compo Beach will hum with family activity for the Westport Young Woman’s League event. 100% of the net profits benefit charities in Westport and Fairfield County.

Since 1956 — even before the long-running (ho ho) event began — the WYWL has distributed over $4 million in grants.

The main events are certified USA Track and Field runs of 10K and 5K, and a 5K walk.

A Kids Fun Run includes a 50 yard dash (ages 3-5), 100 yard dash (6-7), 1/2 mile run (8-9) and mile run (10-12).

The event also features a Kids Zone with fun activities — and for the first time, food trucks during and after the race.

Click here to register, and for more information.


The Westport Weston Family YMCA joins in 5 Days of Action (April 24-28), a campaign that equips and empowers organizations to protect children from sexual abuse.

The Y encourages all adults and organizations to help make the community a safer place. For more information and resources, click here.


There were smiles all around yesterday, as the Westport Rotary Club received the Charles Pettengill Award as “The Best Club in Rotary District 7980.” For non-Rotarians, that’s the 4 coastal counties of Connecticut — 57 clubs in all.

The award recognizes excellence in all 5 areas of service: community, international, youth, vocational and club.

The last 3 COVID years were difficult on all community organizations, but Westport Rotary responded creatively. They held LobsterFest virtually in 2020 — and raised a record amount. The 2021 and ’22 LobsterFests built on that.

More than $250,000 will be distributed to local, regional and international projects from LobsterFest 2022.

So make plans for LobsterFest ’23. Save the date: September 23. Tickets go on sale in July.

From left: Selectwomen Jen Tooker and Andrea Moore present the “Best Rotary Club” citation to Westport Rotary Club president Karl Merganthaller and past president Leslie Robert.


Sprite Island — looking west from Canal Road on Saugatuck Shores — is the misty subject of today’s “Westport … Naturally” feature.

(Photo/Nancy Axthelm)


And finally … thanks again, Steve Shackelford:

(Another day with tons of Westport-related news, all covered by “06880.” Please click here to support our work. Thank you!)

Roundup: Minute Man Race, More


For 42 years, the Minute Man Race has meant many things. It’s one of the area’s top events. It’s a sure sign that spring is here. And it’s a great fundraiser for the Westport Young Woman’s League.

This year, it’s something else: virtual.

Participants can run any time between April 25 and May 2. And you can do it from anywhere. There’s no excuse not to support the WYWL — and the charities they help, throughout the area.

Last year, the WYWL gave $90,000 to local organizations. They’ve distributed over $4.3 million in grants since 1956. Click here for the full list of recipients. .

In addition to the usual 10K run and 5 K run/walk, there’s a new Minute Man Challenge. The fastest combined time for the 5K and 10K runs earns a prize. That’s in addition to the prizes for the top 3 finishers in each event.

Each registrant gets a Minute Man Race t-shirt, and a “digital runner’s packet” with swag from the race sponsors.

Click here for complete details, and registration information. NOTE: The WYWL offers discounts to essential works, students and others.

Questions? Email Minuteman@wywl.com.

The start of a Minute Man Race. This year’s virtual event may have more participants — but it will be less crowded.


Today’s countdown-to-spring photo, from Webb Road …

(Photo/MaryLou Roels)


But winter is hanging on. Spotted on Maplewood Avenue:

(Photo/Fiona Hodgson)


And finally … Nina Simone was born on this day, in 1931 1933. The multi-talented singer, songwriter, musician, arranger (and civil rights activist)’s music spanned a broad range of styles, including classical, jazz, blues, folk, R&B, gospel and pop. She died in 2003, at 70.

Minute Man Race: The WYWL Back Story

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month.

Which makes this a perfect opportunity to highlight the Westport Young Woman’s League’s $20,000 Super Grant recipient: the Rowan Center.

Formerly known as the Center for Sexual Assault Crisis and Counseling Education, the Stamford-based organization empowers clients to find strength, resilience and courage — while educating Fairfield County communities to help change social norms.

In Westport, the Rowan Center puts the WYWL’s grant toward programs in the elementary schools, and Staples High.

In addition, the Young Woman’s League is partnering with the Rowan Center and Westport Library to screen the documentary “Roll Red Roll” (Tuesday, April 30, 6:30 p.m., Christ & Holy Trinity Church). A panel discussion follows.

The film uncovers the “rape culture” in Steubenville, Ohio, brought to light at a high school football party. Teenage social media bullying ran rampant, as adults looked away.

The Rowan Center grant is just part of what the Westport Young Woman’s League does. Last year they gave over $80,000 to local and education-based charitable organization. Recipients include A Better Chance of Westport, the Bridgeport Rescue Mission, Caroline House, CLASP Homes, Homes with Hope, Family & Children’s Agency, Mercy Learning Center and Positive Directions.

But that money does not fall from the sky.

One of the WYWL’s major fundraising events is the Minute Man Race.

Actually, “races.” This year there are 10K and 5K runs, a 5K walk, and a Kids Fun Run with Kids Zone.

The 41st annual Minute Man Race is set for Sunday, April 28. It starts and ends at Compo Beach.

The start of a Minute Man race is always exciting.

It’s 4 decades old, but there are always new twists. For the first time this year, there’s a “corporate and small business team” category. The WYWL encourages local businesses to sign up and compete together, for a fun team-builder that helps good causes.

You’ve seen the signs. You know the Minute Man Race.

Now that you know the back story — where the money goes — there’s even more incentive to run. Or walk.

Or just donate and cheer.

(For more information on the Minute Man Race — including registration and sponsorships — click here.)


A Fabled Road Race Returns

Remember 1978? The year that President Carter convened the Camp David summit; Rev. Jim Jones’ followers committed mass suicide in Guyana, and Sony introduced the Walkman.

It was also the year the Westport Young Woman’s League introduced a 10K race.

The women’s organization and road running may not seem a natural fit, but 35 years ago 10K races were all the rage. Members traveled around the state to watch other races. They set a course and rounded up business sponsors.

By 1979 they were, um, off to the races. Running past the Minuteman statue near Compo Beach gave the April event a name it’s had ever since.

600 runners paid the initial $3 registration fee, and started at Jesup Green. The League provided coffee and donuts, water stations, electronic timers and t-shirts. The Staples Jazz Band played at the finish line.

The 2nd year, rain turned everyone’s labels to mush. But the race was a hit. Within a few years, proceeds contributed to charity doubled.

In 1985 the starting point was moved to the beach. The distance was changed to 5 miles. Two years later, a “scamper” race was added.

The start of a Minute Man race is always fun. This was the scene at last year's 10K.

The 1999 event featured online registration. The technological change met an immovable force — snow, hail and rain — but by then nothing could stop the Minute Man Race.

For the 25th annual running in 2003 the length was changed again, to a 5K. The hope — that more recreational runners would sign up for a shorter race — worked.

A 10K was added later, in honor of the League’s 50th anniversary.

Last year's kids' race. On your mark, get set, go!

This year’s events — a 5K, 10K and kids’ fun run — is set for Sunday, April 29. There will be over 1,000 runners. 120 volunteers will coordinate everything — including 4 water stations.

Participants can pick the recipient of their registration donation from over 2 dozen local charities. Alphabetically, they range from A Better Chance and Al’s Angels to the Westport Public Library.

Much has changed since 1978, including the course, distance and number of participants.

But it’s still one of Westport’s favorite events. It still benefits many worthy organizations.

And runners still listen to music as they pound the pavement.

On iPods. Not Walkmen.

(Click here for information on the Minute Man race, including registration.)