Tag Archives: MoCA Westport

Roundup: Medical Supplies, Gift Cards, Club 203 …

This morning’s “06880” featured information on Westport’s holiday drive. We’re helping raise $30,000, so residents of Lyman, Ukraine can heat their homes this winter.

There’s another way to help that war-torn nation, too.

Mark Yurkiw — the noted local artist, who has Ukrainian heritage — and several Ukrainian friends in this area have spent months stockpiling medical supplies.

They’ve already sent several containers. The next is ready to go — with volunteers both here and in Ukraine —  as soon as shipping costs are covered.

They hope one or 2 major donors can underwrite the cost of shipping (and buying triage bandages). The total is $10,000.

To donate, and for more information, email Mark Yurkiw: mark.think3d@gmail.com.

Earlier this year, Mark Yurkiw collected and shipped generators to Ukraine. He collected them at his studio/barn — outside of which stood his artwork, in the country’s familiar colors.


From now through next Tuesday (December 12), the Westport Domestic Violence Task Force is collecting gift cards for residents of the 2 Domestic Violence Crisis Center safe houses, and community clients.

Gift cards help survivors buy what they most need or want for their families.  Suggested retailers include Stop & Shop, ShopRite, Amazon, Target and Walmart. Smaller denominations ($25-$50) are encouraged. so gift cards for various stores can be bundled together for families.

Gift cards can be left at the communication center in the lobby of the Westport Police Department (50 Jesup Road), or mailed to Lieutenant Jillian Cabana at that address.


Ovcr 150 Club 203 members and volunteers kicked up their heels, and celebrated the season with a “Holiday Hoedown” last night at MoCa Westport.

The Square Bears taught dance moves. Dessert was donated by CRUMBL. T-shirts were courtesy of Howard & Gay Insurance. And MoCA’s artwork provided the perfect backdrop, for the great event hosting Westport’s social organization for adults with disabilities.

Having a great time at the Club 203 Holiday Hoedown.


Popular hair stylist Felicia Catale invites everyone to check out makeup, skincare, health and wellness products and hair products, at a special holiday gift event at Salon Nash this Saturday (December 9, 2:30 to 6 p.m., 179 Post Road West).

Enjoy bubbly, gifts, raffles — and free hair blowouts.

Felicia Catale


Voices Cafe’s next concert — December 16 (4 p.m., Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Westport) — offers both great music and a good cause.

They’re collecting gifts for Bridgeport’s Helping Hands Outreach holiday toy drive. Guests are encouraged to bring an unwrapped toy or retailer gift card.

Windborne’s Music of Midwinter show has been called “intelligent, witty, formally exquisite and brimful of energy” (Slate Magazine). Lush vocals and creative arrangements draw from traditional, classic and folk from the US, British Isles and beyond. Instruments include guitars, banjos, Lithuanian kankles and Irish bodhran.

The singers educate as they entertain, sharing stories about their songs and explaining the context and characteristics of the styles in which they sing.

Click here for tickets and more information. Voices Cafe is BYO, with coffee-house style seating at tables or individual seats. Snacks are available for purchase.



“The One Note Man” — George C. Siougas’ story of a musician caught between staying in his comfort zone or stepping out and changing his life forever — gets its Westport premier this Sunday (December 10, 2 p.m., Westport Library).

The local connection: Westport resident Rita Marcocci is an executive producer of the film.

Set during the holiday season, the film is a whirlwind adventure about a bassoonist whose routine never strays, playing a single note in a classical orchestra day in day out.

It stars Jason Watkins, Louisa Clein, Crystal Yu, Paul Barber, and the voice of Ian McKellen.

A talk-back follows the screening, with Marcocci, Siougas, BAFTA-winning actor Watkins, Oscar-winning composer Stephen Warbeck, and executive producer and Wilton resident Josh Friedman. Click here for more information.


MoMA’s December 14 (7 p.m.) holiday concert features violinist Kristen Young and pianist Joe Bush.

MoMA says, “They break the rules of music by blending traditional classical music with unexpected holiday hits, together in a fresh and exciting contemporary interpretation.”

Click here for tickets, and more information.

Kristen Young and Joe Bush


Pianist David Morgan was trained by Ellis Marsalis — father of Wynton, Branford, Delfeayo and Jason Marsalis.

This week at Jazz at the Post, Morgan pays homage to his New Orleans roots, with compositions by Ellis Marsalis, Harold Battiste, Alvin Batiste and James Black, plus a Mardi Gras preview.

He’s joined by trumpeter Antoine Drye, bassist Dan Asher, drummer Paul Francis, and saxophonist Greg “The Jazz Rabbi” Wall.

Shows are Thursday (December 7, 7:30 and 8:45 p.m.; dinner at 7; VFW Joseph J. Clinton Post 399; $15 music charge). Reservations are highly recommended: JazzatthePost@gmail.com.


Westport resident Pamela Waesche passed away peacefully, surrounded by family, on Friday. She was 76.

Her obituary says: “Pam and her husband of 53 years, John, shared a love that transcended all life’s struggles and hardships. She was smart, loving, empathetic, and together, she and John raised 3 daughters they could not be prouder of. Her children and their families are the legacy she leaves behind.”

She met John at a 6th grade square dance in Oradell, New Jersey. She graduated from Skidmore College in 1969 with a BA in American Studies. Pam held professional positions at the Guggenheim Museum, Time Life and the Library of Congress, but she always focused on supporting her family and others.

She worked with Au Pair in America and the Westport Housing Authority, helping those in need find a home. She spent summer mornings harvesting vegetables for local soup kitchens as a member of the Greens Farms Garden Club, and cared for any animal in distress.

She is survived by her husband; daughters, sons-in-law and 9 grandchildren: Wendy, David, Kate, Lucy and Matthew Lavallee of Southport;  Dana, Jamey, Jackson, Toby and Kiley Gifford of Hillsborough, California; and Erin, George, John, Charlie and Lily DiGuido of Fairfield.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that a donation to a charity of your choice be made in her name.

Pamela Waesche


Barry Kresch calls today’s “Westport … Naturally” phot — taken in his yard — “50 Shades of Gray.”


And finally … in honor of today’s owl photo (above):

(Every day, “06880” offers new ideas for things to do — this holiday season, and beyond. If you appreciate our daily  Roundup, or any other feature, please click here to support our work. Thank you!)

Roundup: Patagonia, Marathon Book, Sandra Day O’Connor …

That “For Lease” sign was for real.

Patagonia’s last day of business is December 24.

A sign on the door of the clothing and outdoor gear retailer smack in the middle of downtown says: “Thank you, Westport, for letting us be a part of the neighborhood for the last 18 years. It’s been an honor to call this community home.”

Patagonia products can still be found at their wholesale partner, ASF Sports & Outdoors.

Meanwhile, we could make the snarky remark that the valuable property could be replaced by a bank.

Except that’s what it was, for its first 8 or so decades of existence. (Hat tip: Sal Liccione)

Only 23 shopping days until it’s “Pata-gone-ia.”


Looking for a good read (or holiday gift)?

Westport’s own Jo Ann Miller and Carl Addison Swanson’s “A Marathon of Changes” was called “a very interesting and motivating book for the new year,” by BookList.

Jo Ann — daughter of famed fighter pilot Thomas H. Miller. and goddaughter of astronaut John Glenn (who wrote the foreward) — grew up amid constant change, and in the shadow of the Marine Corps.

After emerging as a beautiful young career woman, the stress of work and life took its toll on her personality as well as her body. Faced with obesity, draining work demands and horrid tragic events in her past, she decided to change her life.

The culmination was the 2006 Marine Corps Marathon. The book follows her through each mile, as she reflects on the demands of the race as well as the remembrances of her past.

The book deals with the loneliness of obesity, the challenge of gastric bypass surgery, the tragedy of life and death, the intimate anger of rape, and finally the joy of financial freedom and newfound love. Click here to purchase.


The death yesterday of Sandra Day O’Connor brought tributes to the first female Supreme Court justice from around the country.

Westporter Howard Matson remembered a dinner he hosted for her 9 years ago, at New York’s Union League Club.

“She was very gracious,” he told “06880.”

“She spoke at length about her years after leaving the Supreme Court. Her favorite project was a curriculum developed to teach civics online to students. Justice O’Connor felt that there was a profound lack of understanding of the American government structure.”

Justice Sandra Day O’Connor and Howard Matson.


Before you know it, Christmas will be here.

And the kids will be out of school.

MoCA Westport can help!

Their winter recess Art Camp for Kids runs December 18-22 and 26-29.

Morning sessions (9;30 to 11:30 a.m.) are for nursery schoolers and kindergartners. Participants must be “fully potty trained.”

Full-day sessions (9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.) are for kindergartners through 2nd graders.


One of the first compelling events of the new year is January 10.

Chabad of Westport sponsors an evening of hope and inspiration (7:30 p.m.). Esther Basch — the Honey Girl of Auschwitz — will tell her gripping story of survival and resilience. At 95, she is one of the world’s few remaining Auschwitz survivors.

Esther was transported to the death camp on her 16th birthday in a cattle car. she later faced a death march to the Salzwedel concentration Camp, where she was liberated by American soldiers in April 1945.

Despite the horrors she experienced, Esther’s unshakable faith and universal love for humankind helped her survive, then motivated her to share her story globally.

The event is part of Chabad’s new “Critical Conversation Series,” addressing contemporary Jewish and timely issues.

To reserve a seat, click here. For more information, email  mendel@chabadofwestport.com.

Esther Basch


No, it’s not a decoy.

Johanna Keyser Rossi spotted today’s “Westport … Naturally” star — a hooded merganser — on Thursday, during her Saugatuck River walk:

(Photo/Johanna Keyser Rossi)


And finally … On this date in 1942, a Manhattan Project team led by Enrico Fermi initiated the first artificial self-sustaining nuclear chain reaction.

(Only 23 shopping days left at Patagonia. But you can make a donation to “06880′ any time. Just click here. Thank you!)

Roundup: Tree Lighting, Sherwood Diner, Wreaths Across America …

Light ’em up!

Westport’s annual tree lighting is set for next Monday (December 4, 5 p.m., Town Hall).

The Staples High School Orphenians will perform. Then the tree on the lawn in front will be lit.

It’s a quick, fun ceremony. And everyone is welcome.

The Town Hall tree, 2022. (Photo/Dan Woog)


More joyful news:

The Sherwood Diner reopened at 8 a.m. this morning!

It’s been closed for 4 weeks, as the kitchen was updated.

Now, the world is back to normal.


Sherwood Diner (Photo/Lynn Untermeyer Miller)


Each Christmas season, the Wreaths Across America program honors fallen servicemembers, and all who serve. Over 2 million volunteers take part, in all 50 states and overseas.

Last year, for the first time, Westport joined in.

We’ll do it again this year.

The date is December 16. The time is noon. The cemetery is Assumption, on Greens Farms Road.

It wouldn’t have happened without Patty Kondub. The popular Westport Family YMCA and Senior Center fitness instructor (and Staples High School girls golf coach) is the local coordinator.

As part of her many other Westport activities, she’s also vice president of the VFW Joseph J. Clinton Post 399 Auxiliary.

Click here to sponsor a wreath. To designate a wreath for a specific veteran at the Assumption cemetery, email Patty: nortonpk@aol.com. You can also email her to volunteer to mark graves before December 17, and place them on that date.

SPECIAL NOTE: On today — Giving Tuesday — $5 of every $17 wreath this year is donated back to the Westport VFW.

For Patty, the project is personal. Her father — John Kondub — was a World War II Marine, and VFW Post 399 member. He earned a Purple Heart, for hand-to-hand combat in the Marianas Islands (Saipan).

He is buried at Assumption Greens Farms Cemetery — almost across from the farm where he was born, before I-95 was built.

“There are over 350 veterans buried in this cemetery,” Patty says. “I hope they all get wreaths.”


The Westport Department of Human Services’ Warm-Up Fund helps households with home heating expenses through the cold winter months.

It’s especially welcome as the cost of food, housing — and heating bills — all rise.

Tax-deductible donations to the Westport Warm-Up Fund can be made online (click here, then scroll down), or by mail to Department of Human Services, Westport Town Hall, 110 Myrtle Ave., Westport CT 06880


Back in 2020, the Hackett family wanted to do something meaningful to give back to those in need.

All avid athletes, they chose a project that connects with them, and their Westport community. (It also helps clear out clutter.)

Working with Leveling the Playing Field — a non-profit organization helps underprivileged youngsters who need sports equipment — they’ll collect new and gently used sports and playground equipment.

They’ll be at the Granola Bar this Saturday and Sunday (December 2 and 3), from 8 a.m. to noon.

(From left): Alex, Chloe and Daisy Hackett, with a few of their many donations.

You must have stuff lying around: cleats, field hockey sticks, lacrosse equipment, bats, ice hockey skates, footballs, softball gloves, soccer shin guards, etc. Click here for a full list of items — you’ll be amazed at what you forgot you have.

So clean out your garages, sheds and basements. It’s time to level the playing field for everyone!

For more information about this amazing organization, click below:


Chabad of Westport launches its new speaker series, “Critical Conversations,”  with a big name.

Former Israeli Minister of Justice and Interior Ayelet Shaked comes to the Newtown Turnpike center this Thursday (November 30, 7:30 p.m.). 

Shaked is a prominent political figure, known for her dedication to Israel. Her insights and perspectives on the complexities of the region are especially meaningful in the wake of last month’s terror attack by Hamas on the nation.

A Q-and-A session will follow Shaked’s presentation. For more information and reservations, click here.


MoCA Westport’s first-ever Artisan Market (Holiday Edition) promises “a delightful day of luxury holiday shopping and art exploration.” It’s December 9 (noon to 4 p.m.), at MoCA’s Newtown Turnpike campus.

Attendees can also enjoy the current Purvis Young exhibition (and treats from the Cowabunga Food Truck).

Admission to the Artisan Marketplace is included in the $10 gallery admission fee. Admission is free for MoCA members.

Artisans include:

  • Mediterranean Botanicals
  • Hudson & King Jewelry
  • Bedford Embroidery
  • Camille & Co.
  • COG (Jen Cogliantry Design)
  • Shawls by Sonika
  • Jennifer Hoertz Millinery
  • Tocco Studio
  • hipV Modern Vintage Jewelry
  • Lucy Curran Party
  • Runo Store
  • Ellis Sant’Andrea Fine Art
  • Le Rouge Aartisan Chocolates
  • ARRA
  • SantM
  • KVO Collections


Westport’s PTA Cultural Arts group is bringing Matthew “Magic Morgan” to all the elementary schools this week.

He and his wife Liliana — deaf magicians from Wisconsin — perform around the world. In addition to magic, students learn some American Sign Language.

Matt and Liliana will also perform for the public at Westport Town Hall tomorrow evening (Wednesday, November 29, 6 p.m.). Admission is $10.

Magic Morgan and Liliana


Natural beauty can be found just steps from downtown.

Claudia Sherwood Servidio spotted today’s “Westport … Naturally” scene by the Kings Highway North bridge, near Canal Street.

(Photo/Claudia Sherwood Servidio)


And finally … happy 94th birthday to Berry Gordy.

He’s best known as the founder of Motown Records. But he’s also a songwriter (“Lonely Teardrops,” “Shop Around,” “Do You Love Me,” “I Want You Back,” “ABC.”)

He was the mastermind behind groups like the Miracles, the Supremes, Marvin Gaye, the Temptations, the Four Tops, Gladys Knight & the Pips, and Stevie Wonder.

For several decades, Motown was was the highest-earning Black-owned business.

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Roundup: Swearing In, Peggy’s Cottage, ’60s Art …

Winners of Tuesday’s election — newcomers and incumbents — will be sworn in on Monday, November 20 (7:30 p.m., Town Hall auditorium).

The public is invited to attend.

Dozens of town officials — including board and commission members, and those on the Representative Town Meeting — will take oaths of office November 20. This is a file photo from 2021. (Photo/Andrew Colabella)


Loyal customers love Peggy’s Cottage — the great everything-Irish (and English, Scottish and Welsh) Post Road store, opposite Stop & Shop.

It’s a little bit of home — warm, comfortable, welcoming.

But there’s always something new there, too.

For example:

  • Irish Word Bangle Bracelets
  • 100% Irish Wool Socks.
  • Mittens
  • Irish knitwear for babies.
  • Celtic design pashmina wool and silk scarves, inspired by Irish islands with the story of each  isle on the hangtag.
  • Ireland t-shirts
  • Books, from a Celtic wholesale company.

Click here for more very cool (and often green) merchandise.

New arrivals at Peggy’s Cottage.


Speaking of holiday shopping:

The Westport Library Gift Store is now open, and filled with gifts. It’s located in the writing center adjacent to the Hub on the main floor, alongside the Library Store and Patron Services desk.

There are gifts for readers, writers, and anyone else special: handmade scarves, hats and gloves; puzzles and games; decorative items like unique snow globes; notebooks and journals; toys, art supplies, novelty items for kids, and more.

An added gift: Purchases are tax free. All proceeds support Library services and programs.


High school students were not around in the 1960s. Most of their parents were not, either.

But MoCA Westport is reaching back to that famous decade, while seeking submissions for their 2024 High School Student Art Exhibition.

The theme of the open call is “Through the Lens of Icons: Revisiting the 1960s.” The idea is to “reimagine the ’60s through your creative lens.” Individuals, moments or symbols that hold cultural, political or personal significance are welcome.

Categories include photography, painting, drawing, sculpture and video. Students may submit only one work each.

The deadline is December 1. For more details, including submission guidelines, click here.

President Kennedy, his wife Jackie and Texas Governor John Connolly, moments before the assassination that changed the world.


The “bridge slide” portion of the I-95 project is over.

But construction delays remain.

Long ones.

Last night, Jo Shields Sherman reports, 3 state highway trucks were traveling south, “as fast as 5 miles an hour.” Police vehicles kept pace, preventing any vehicles from passing.


One view of I-95, from the Hillspoint Road bridge …

The view from the other side of the bridge seemed eerie, she says, with not a single vehicle in sight. Here’s what it looked like:

(Photos/Jo Shields Sherman)

By 8:30, traffic was moving well again.


After a 3-year hiatus, Stephanie Bass returns to the stage.

Westport’s favorite 70something comedian offers her always-hilarious take on life — including getting older, and raising a kid from 5 to adulthood in this wonderful, odd, often (unintentionally) humorous town.

The free show (including both stand-up and storytelling) on November 17 (7 p.m., Westport Library) is presented by students of Verso University’s Stand-Up comedy series. The host is comedian (and course instructor) Mina Hartong.

Click here for more information.

Stephanie Bass, at the Gotham Comedy Club.


Staples High School’s November Students of the Month are seniors Dylan Fiore and Dylan Walsh, juniors Will Boberski and Kate Weitz, sophomores Tyler Smalls and Mia Zibly, and freshmen Ishan Pasham and Eliza Wadley.

Students of the Month “help make Staples a welcoming place for their peers and teachers alike. They are the ‘glue’ of the Staples community: the type of kind, cheerful, hard-working, trustworthy students that keep the high school together, making it the special place that it is.”

November Students of the Month (from left): Dylan Walsh, William Boberski, Mia Zibly, Kate Weitz, Eliza Wadley. Not pictured: Dylan Fiore, Ishan Pasham, Tyler Smalls. 


The Westport Library’s Big Fall Book Sale is set for 3 weeks before winter: December 1-4.

On sale: thousands of gently used books for children and adults in more than 50 categories, antiquarian books, vinyl records, music CDs, movie and TV DVDs, plus a limited selection of ephemera and artwork, and the “Fiction for $1” room.

Hours are Friday, December 1 (noon to 6 p.m.), Saturday, December 2 (9 a.m. to 5 p.m.), Sunday, December 3 (11 a.m. to 5 p.m., nearly everything  half price), and Monday, December 4 (9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; fill logo bags for $8 or $10).

On December 1 (8:55 a.m. to noon), the book sale is open via an Early Access ticket (click here to buy). For more information, click here.

To volunteer at the sale, email volunteers@westportbooksales.org.

Can’t make the sale?  Visit the nonprofit Westport Book Shop across Jesup Green from the Library, or shop any time on the Book Sale’s Online Store, or eBay.

Westport Library Book Sale.


It’s been a few days since Tracy Porosoff sent in this “Westport … Naturally” photo.

Hopefully, these flowers are still hanging on, in her backyard garden.

(Flowers/Tracy Porosoff)


And finally … if high school students need a prompt to create art for MoCA Westport’s “1960s” exhibition (story above), there are tens of thousands of songs to choose from.

Here are 3:

(“06880” looks back often — and looks to the present and future always. Please help us continue our work. Click here to make a tax-deductible contribution. Thank you!)


Roundup: Detours, Long Lots Meetings, Carjacking …

We can’t emphasize it enough: I-95 will be a mess this weekend.

And local roads will be collateral damage.

The I-95 northbound entrance ramp at Exit 17 will remain closed from now through Friday, October 31. Traffic is being detoured to Riverside Avenue, then to the Post Road, Sherwood Island Connector, and onto Exit 18.

In addition, parts of I-95 itself will be closed — as will the northbound Exit 17  entrance and exit ramps, and the southbound exit ramp — along with nearby Saugatuck Avenue, from 8 p.m. this Friday, October 20, through 6 a.m. Monday, October 23.

The closures are necessary for the new I-95 northbound bridge to be placed using Accelerated Bridge Construction techniques. While I-95 northbound is closed, 2 lanes of I-95 northbound traffic will be crossed over on the I-95 southbound bridge. Traffic flow in both directions will be severely impacted all weekend.

For additional information on the project, including detours, click here.


The Long Lots School Building Committee holds a special meeting tonight (Thursday, October 19, 6 p.m., Town Hall Room 201), to “meet briefly to accept the written recommendation for presentation to the First Selectwoman.”

That recommendation of a new building is for “Option C,” voted unanimously by the LLSBC earlier this month.

An hour later tonight (Thursday, October 19, 7 p.m., Staples High School cafeteria), the Board of Education agenda includes a discussion/action item: “Long Lots Building Committee Update.”

It will be presented by LLSBC chair Jay Keenan.

The Long Lots project moves forward next Tuesday (October 24, 7:30 p.m., Town Hall auditorium), with a special session of the Board of Finance. They’ll meet with the Building Committee and Board of Education, “to discuss only their recommendations.”

The Board of Finance will take comments from the public for 30 minutes.

Long Lots School Building Committee.


A third arrest has been made, in connection with last month’s carjacking incident at a resident’s Bayberry Lane garage.

Vineys Baez, a 20-year-old Waterbury resident, was arrested yesterday.

He was charged with:

  • Home invasion
  • Burglary, 1st degree
  • Robbery by carjacking
  • Assault, 3rd degree
  • Reckless endangerment
  • Larceny 1st degree
  • Conspiracy to commit larceny, 1st degree
  • Robbery, 1st degree
  • Conspiracy to commit robbery, 1st degree.

Baez is the second person identified through surveillance video. A third person was also arrested.

Baez was held on $500,000 court set bond.

The Westport Police Detective Bureau has completed their investigation into the carjacking.

Two men were caught on surveillance video taking an Aston martin, as the owner was in the vehicle in his Bayberry Lane garage.


Westport’s annual Children’s Halloween Parade returns to Main Street next Wednesday (October 25). It’s free for all kids (especially those age 8 and younger).

Children and parents will meet at the Main Street/Post Road East corner at 3:30 p.m. The parade heads up Main Street, then goes right on Avery Place and left on Myrtle Avenue to Town Hall and Veterans Green.

Youngsters may trick or treat along Main Street, and in front of Town Hall. Entertainment, refreshments and a small gift will be provided on Veterans Green (across from Town Hall) at 4 p.m.

The event is sponsored by the Westport Parks & Recreation Department, Westport Downtown Association and Westport PAL.

This photo is from 2011. Where is this former Halloween parade-goer today?


The United Methodist Church invites everyone to a couple of cool — and very different — events.

This Saturday (October 21, 1 to 3 p.m.), “Trunk or Treat” offers a fun, safe Halloween alternative for kids under 12, with snacks and games.

The suggested admission price is simple: 5 non-perishable food items for the Person to Person pantry, per child.

Don’t be spooked by the weather forecast. It’s on, rain or shine. (Heavy rain will move it indoors.)

On Sunday, October 29 (4 p.m.). “Jazz Vespers” is an inspiring service of words and music with a quartet featuring UMC’s new music director, John Hoddinott. A free will offering will be received.

Trunk or treat!


An Israeli flag appeared on the Ruth Steinkraus Cohen Bridge last night.

It was apparently not placed there by town officials, or the United Nations Association of Southwestern Connecticut.


It’s Thursday.

That means the Westport Farmers’ Market is open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Imperial Avenue parking lot.

Everyone is welcome. Except, of course …

(Photo/Rachel Konstantin)


The Levitt Pavilion season is not over.

Well, at least not until tonight.

This evening (Thursday, October 19, 7:30 p.m.) the outdoor venue transforms into a giant disco, with the debut presentation of Say She She.

The band’s album “Prism” is under consideration for a Grammy nomination for Best R&B album. Meanwhile, their new album “Silver” is earning raves.

The new turf area in front of the stage provides a perfect dance floor. In a nod to the season, the terrace bar will offer hot chocolate.

Additional free tickets have just been released. They’re available at www.levittpavilion.com,  and 2 hours before showtime at the box office.

Click  below for the band’s special shoutout to Westport:


For many years, Penny Slinger wanted to visit Friday Kahlo’s home.

In July, the London-born, Los Angeles-based artist’s dream came true.

She recorded her visit in photographs. Now she’s sharing her experience with audiences around the country.

On November 2 (7 p.m.), Slinger brings her “Frida Kahlo and Me” exhibition to MoCA Westport. It’s a side-by-side comparison of both women’s works.

Advance registration is requested: $10 general admission, free for MoCA members. Click here to register, and for more information.

Penny Slinger, and art materials.


I can’t imagine a more “Westport … Naturally” photo than this one:

(Photo/Jim Hood)

Sure, it’s Koda — one of the beach neighborhood’s most famous dogs.

But it could be anyone’s. Anywhere in town.

Westport loves its pooches!


And finally … Say She She will be at the Levitt Pavilion tonight (story above).

If you have no idea who they are (and I sure didn’t), click below. Enjoy!

(If you appreciate “06880” saving you from traffic hell this weekend, please consider a donation. Click here — and thank you!)

Roundup: Israel, Civility, Il Pastaficio …

A wrong location was posted yesterday for this week’s candidate debates. Here’s the correct info:

Planning & Zoning Commission candidates take the Town Hall auditorium stage tomorrow (Wednesday, October 11, 7 p.m.). They’re followed by a double-header on Thursday, October 12: the Board of Education at 7 p.m., Board of Finance at 8:15.

Questions must be submitted in advance. They will not be taken from the floor. Email: lwvwestportct@yahoo.com.

The debates are sponsored by the League of Women Voters of Westport.


An overflow crowd of 1,000 — including Governor Ned Lamont and Senator Richard Blumenthal, local officials and many clergy — packed Temple Israel last night, for a “We Stand With Israel” solidarity gathering.

Representatives from nearly 2 dozen area synagogues and other organizations hosted the event, which was organized in just 48 hours by the Jewish Federation of Greater Fairfield County.

Senator Richard Blumenthal (bottom center), at last night’s “We Stand With Israel” gathering.

Religious leaders and others, at Temple Israel. (Photos/Allison Wachstein)


Westporters Arthur and Lisa Hayes are in Paris this week.

On a boat in the Seine yesterday night, they saw from a distance that the Eiffel Tower was not lit in white, as usual. One half seemed to be dark; the other was very dark blue.

As they got closer, they all understood. The tour boat grew very quiet, as they passed by.

(Photo/Arthur Hayes)


In this week’s timely “Westport … What’s Happening” podcast, 1st Selectwoman Jen Tooker discusses a recent study on the growing lack of civility in small towns, and her own public comments on the issue.

The podcasts are sponsored by the Y’s Men of Westport and Weston. Click below to listen:


Il Pastaficio is Westport’s hottest new restaurant.

But it’s already drawing notice.

Owner/chef Federico Perandin will appear on Guy Fieri’s legendary “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives” Food Network show. The episode airs this Friday (October 13, 9 p.m.).

The Black Duck was featured on the same show in 2009. People still talk about it.

Looks like that will be true too for our new Post Road authentic Italian place. Here’s to Il Pastaficio, and 2037!

Federico Perandin, at Il Pastaficio. (Photo/Dan Woog)


WestportMoms’ Fall Festival returns for a 3rd autumn — with a great new venue.

The Compo Beach fields (across from the playground) are the site for this year’s event. It’s this Saturday (October 14), from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The day includes

  • Crafty kids’ art projects
  • Hair tinsel
  • Face painting
  • DJ and photo booth
  • Jumbo balloon
  • Bounce house
  • Obstacle course
  • Pumpkin decorating
  • Pottery
  • Food trucks, candy truck, cotton candy
  • Mad science show
  • Bubble snow
  • Basketball games
  • A special character dressed up as Super Mario (based on a town  vote)
  • And more!

New this year: a Halloween costume swap. Bring an old costume; take a new or used one at no cost.

Leftovers will be donated to children in need.

The cost is $20 per family.


Today is World Mental Health Day.

Westport’s own David Briggs will conduct an Instagram interview tonight (Tuesday, October 10, 7:30 p.m., @westportlibrary) with Rhone co-founder and CEO Nate Checketts. They’ll talk about how the men’s wellness brand — which opened on Main Street this summer — is committed to men’s mental health issues.

From left: ESPN’s Dan Orlovsky and Nate Checketts at Rhone’s Westport store.


Longtime Westporter Marty Yellen offered a presentation on aging — and a cancer treatment update — at yesterday’s Y’s Women meeting.

Yellen was an engineer on the Hubble Space Telescope. He then earned a doctorate in medical biology engineering. He works now with Yale scientists, biologists and engineers on diseases that come with aging, researching techniques and treatments to alleviate them.

Yellen warned the large audience to stay away from beef (particularly grilling), processed meats that can stand at room temperature like salami, and animal fats. 

He suggested instead lamb, chicken, fish, plenty of fiber and vegetables, nuts, yogurt, beans — and most importantly, virgin olive oil rather than butter. 

Daily exercise daily — for example, 30 minutes of walking — is especially important. 

“You are your own doctor,” Yellen said. “Take care of your body, eat right, exercise daily — and don’t smoke!”

Marty Yellin at yesterday’s Y’s Women meeting.


Speaking of health: The 29th annual Making Strides Against Breast Cancer of Fairfield County event is always a celebration of courage and hope

Over 5,000 participants will gather this Sunday (October 15, 9 a.m. to noon), at Sherwood Island State Park.

Over 3 decades, Making Strides Against Breast Cancer’s 3- to 5-mile walks have  provided a supportive community for survivors, caregivers and families. The event funds breast cancer research, programs and services.

For more details, click here.


From Azerbaijan to Westport: Amina Figarova has moved from her upbringing behind the Iron Curtain to become a celebrated jazz pianist and composer.

On Thursday (October 12, VFW Joseph J. Clinton Post 399) she makes her “Jazz at the Post” debut. Rudy Royston, Boots Maleson, Bart Platteau and Greg “The Jazz Rabbi” Wall join her for two shows: 7:30 and 8:45 p.m. Dinner starts at 7.

Reservations are highly recommended: JazzatthePost@gmail.com.


MoCA Westport is stepping into dance.

Their first-ever dance performance this Saturday (October 14, 7 p.m.) features the East Coast Contemporary Ballet Company, in collaboration with Alturas Duo and Yale University’s  Calllisto Quartet.

“Strings and Asymmetry” offers a fusion of styles, instruments and artistic

Tickets include admission to the current exhibit. For details and tickets, click here or call (203) 222-7070.

Dance and more at MoCA.


Fred Cantor and his wife Debbie Silberstein spotted these on Riverside Avenue, near the medical buildings.

(Photo/Fred Cantor)

They’re perfect for “Westport … Naturally.” But Fred and Debbie don’t know what kind of berries they are.

“06880” readers: Chime in! Click “Comments” below.


And finally … on this day in 1845, the Naval School opened with 50 students in Annapolis, Maryland.

Today it’s known as the United States Naval Academy. Its enrollment is about 4,450.

(Another Roundup filled with political, entertainment, restaurant and health news — and another reminder that “06880” relies entirely on reader support. Please click here to help. Thank you!)

Roundup: Lights Out, Rainbow Crosswalk, Book Shop Pumpkin Fest …

Sarah Gross reminds us that now through November 15 is “Lights Out Connecticut.”

A bill signed by Governor Lamont requires all state-owned buildings to dim or turn off non-essential outdoor lights.

All residents are asked to dim or turn off outdoor and indoor lights too.

The goal is to protect migratory birds, who are put at risk from light pollution. Click here for more information.

Nearly 30% of birds in the US and Canada have vanished since 1970. Click here to learn more.


Connecticut warbler (Photo/Ryan Sanderson for Macaulay Library)


The rainbow crosswalk at Jesup Road and Taylor Place — installed temporarily in June, for Pride Month — is showing signs of wear.

So on Monday, October 2 — the start of LGBTQ History Month — a new, permanent rainbow crosswalk will take its place.

And the official dedication is at 1 p.m. on October 11: National Coming Out Day.

The project — developed by Westport Pride, paid for by private donations, and supported by the Board of Selectwomen and Public Works director Pete Ratkiewich — promotes diversity, inclusion and acceptance in the community.

Nearly 40 individuals, families and businesses from all walks of life contributed funds.

The design and colors– created by Westport Pride founder Brian McGunagle — symbolize “the full spectrum of the LGBTQ+ community,” he says.

“It adds a vibrant touch to our town’s streetscape, but also serves as a powerful symbol of acceptance, unity, and love. We believe it will be a source of pride and inspiration for all Westport residents.”

Dr. Nikki Gorman — who helped sponsor the original temporary rainbow crosswalk, as well as the new permanent one — also took part in the first installation in June.


The Westport Book Shop is just a few yards from the crosswalk.

This Saturday (October 7, 10:30 a.m. to noon), they partner with Earthplace and the Westport Tree Board for their 3rd annual Family Fun + Halloween Pumpkin Painting Project.

It’s a morning of crafts, guest animals from Earthplace, and giveaways from the Tree Board.  Michael Zenetti will read from his book “The Sloth and His Friends.” Halloween costumes are optional, but encouraged.

RSVP to the Book Shop: 203-349-5141.


EcoFest — Westport’s sustainable holiday celebration — is set for November 11, at Staples High School.

The sponsors — the school’s Zero Waste Committee — invites all organizations, businesses, artists, crafters and sustainable groups to participate.

A wide variety of exhibitors are welcome. Click here to register. The deadline is October 31.


MyTeamTriumph — whose volunteers help youth, adults and veterans with disabilities to participate in triathlons and road races — is a great non-profit.

Their fundraiser will be a great one too.

“Stories of Triumph & Inclusion” (November 2,6:15 p.m., Westport Library), will feature Chris Nikic, the first person with Down Syndrome to complete an Ironman. He also won the Jimmy V ESPY Award for Perserverance.

The evening includes inspiration from other athletes with disabilities, raffles, drinks, and catering by Marcia Selden.

Click here for tickets and more information, including sponsorships.

My Team Triumph, at the Westport Triathlon.


MoCA Westport’s MoCA Westport’s annual benefit — held last night — was called The Surrealist Soiree.

It featured imaginative décor, avant-garde performers. a DJ, delicious food from Marcia Selden, Spencer Heyfron‘s surreal photo sessions, never-before-seen works by Purvis Young — and this:

(Photo/Dinkin Fotografix)


Rain and high tides combined to close Burying Hill Beach yesterday.

Ed Simek got this far — and no further — as he snapped today’s “Westport … Naturally” photo.

(Photo/Ed Simek)


And finally … in honor of migrating birds (story above), this seems appropriate in a couple of ways:

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Roundup: Garden Pop-Up, MoCA Show …

A large crowd popped over to the Westport Community Gardens yesterday, for a 20th anniversary pop-up event.

People of all ages wandered through the 100-plus individual plots. They marveled at the wide variety of plants; watched the bees and butterflies; admired the pergola and bocce court; chatted with the gardeners — and picked up plenty of vegetables, herbs and flowers too.

(Photos/Karen Mather)


Yesterday’s “06880” Roundup highlighted Westport Pride’s promotion of a permanent rainbow crosswalk downtown, at Jesup Road and Taylor Place.

Fundraising efforts had already brought in $18,000. But $14,500 more was needed, for materials, labor and installation.

By nightfall, the entire amount had been pledged.

The outpouring of support — from members of the LGBTQ+ community, and beyond — was very heartening, Pride members say.

The goal is to have the crosswalk completed by National Coming Out Day (October 11).

For more information, or to get involved, email westportctpride@gmail.com.

Dr. Nikki Gorman helped prepare the temporary crosswalk in June. A permanent one will be installed soon.


MoCA Westport celebrated its “Kaleidoscope: A Journey of Creativity, Self-Expression & Unity” exhibit yesterday, with a packed house.

The show highlighted artists who have been supported by the MoCA Gives Back healing arts program at the museum, as well as summer camp participants.

Club 203 — Westport’s social club for adults with disabilities — was well represented. MoCA has enjoyed a strong partnership in the club’s initial year, and looks forward to strengthening that relationship even more in the months ahead.

MoCA art teacher Agata Tria and Club 203 artist Elizabeth Sonne.


Staples High School 2017 graduate Richard Costello is one of many Westporters running in the New York Marathon November 5.

But the former lacrosse player is not just racing for himself. He’s also raising money for the Hole in the Wall Gang Camp.

The organization — founded by our late neighbor Paul Newman to provide free, fun opportunities for youngsters facing life-threatening illnesses — is near to Richard’s heart. He volunteered at the Ashford, Connecticut facility several times, and has been awed by the program’s impact on children and their families.

This is Richard’s second marathon. He competed in Philadelphia last fall.

Click here to donate to Richard’s fundraiser.

Richard Costello


Westport Community Gardens (story above) are not the only place to enjoy beautiful flowers.

Jonathan Prager grows crackerjack marigolds and purple wave petunias at his Owenoke home.

Today he shares them with “06880” readers as our “Westport … Naturally” featured image.

(Photo/Jonathan Prager)


And finally … today marks the 60th anniversary of the March on Washington.

It is remembered now for Martin Luther King’s riveting “I Have a Dream” speech.

But there was much more — including powerful musical performances.

Marian Anderson sang, 24 years after her first famous concert at the Lincoln Memorial (after the Daughters of the American Revolution prevented her from singing at Constitution Hall).

I could not find any videos of her, at the March on Washington.

But here are 3 other performances, from 60 years ago today:

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Roundup: Cans, Downtown Charette, Jodi & Scott …

On Sunday, Tom Kretsch and his wife Sandi headed to Compo’s South Beach, by the trees near the kayak launch.

A large group of Staples High School students and parents were setting up for an end-of-summer/start-of-school bash.

Not far away Tom saw a woman with a baby on her back, and 2 other kids tagging along. She stopped at every trash can, gathering cans for redemption.

She halted for a bit, to watch the picnic. Someone came over, with pizza for her and her children.

A few minutes later the woman continued walking, and picking through the trash.

(Photos/Tom Kretsch)

“It was quite a contrast, seeing someone scrounging for cans on our beach, and other people enjoying life on the beach,” Tom says.

“I wondered how she got there, with 3 kids and those heavy bags. What a world of haves and have-nots.

I’ve never seen anything like that on Compo Beach. On we journey, counting our blessings.”


A reminder: Tonight (Tuesday, August 22) is the open house “charrette”: a public review and feedback meeting covering additional plans for the Downtown Plan Implementation Committee’s “Master Plan for Downtown Parking and Pedestrian Areas: Reconnecting the Riverfront.”

Particular focus will be on the Parker Harding Plaza design.

The session begins at 7 p.m. (Westport Library) All residents and downtown stakeholders are invited to attend.

Information on the project is available on the DPIC website. Feedback is welcome in its comments section.

DPIC also conducts regular public meetings, typically the 2nd Thursday of each month at 8:30 a.m.

Parker Harding Plaza cut-through road (left), and Saugatuck River. (Drone photo/John Videler for Videler Photography)


Westport Community Gardens continues its 20th anniversary celebration with another pop-up garden stand.

Everyone is invited to explore the Gardens — and adjacent Long Lots Preserve — and pick up very fresh produce, herbs and flowers this Sunday (August 27, 10 a.m. to noon).

Straight from the Community Gardens. (Photo/Karen Mather)


The Rhimes girls held a very successful lemonade-and-ice-cream fundraiser for Westport Volunteer Emergency Medical Services this weekend.

They raised over $4,000 for the great organization (which, many people don’t realize, runs almost entirely on donations).

The feeling of helping a good cause was enough. But the youngsters were rewarded yesterday. President Mike Burns led a personal tour of the facility — and personally thanked the girls.

WVEMS president Mike Burns and EMS member Sammi Henske flank the Rhimes family. (Photo courtesy of Shonda Rhimes)


James Naughton and Carole Schweid entertained a full house last night.

The “Play With Your Food” creator led the actor/director in a discussion on his life on stage and screen — and as a passionate advocate for Connecticut’s Medical Aid in Dying legislation.

Naughton talked about investing in theater (he’s been quite lucky), his work with Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward and many others, and the joys and frustrations of a life in the arts.

The evening included a screening of the short film “Not the Same Clarence.” The film, featuring Jim and his son Greg Naughton, depicts the realities of caring for a parent with dementia, and its impact on their lives.

The Y’s Men of Westport and Weston sponsored the event.

James Naughton and Carole Schweid. (Photo/Dan Woog)


Speaking of acting: Jodi Stevens and Scott Bryce are expanding SBEstudio — their Weston performing arts school — to Saugatuck Congregational Church.

Jodi (a Broadway veteran and voice, singing and acting coach for over 20 years) and Scott (her Emmy-winning producer/director/actor husband, and a former Staplesl Player) offer new programming too, including a spring 6-week film and TV intensive course.

A grand opening is set for this Sunday (August 27, 2 p.m.).

Musical theater group classes and private lessons are available from ages 4-5 (Broadway Beginnings) all the way to 15-18 (Young Professionals). A new Broadway Babies class, for ages 2-3, is in the works.

The Bryce family has a long history with the Saugatuck Church. Scott’s mother Dorothy was deacon emeritus, a founding member of the Interfaith Council of Westport, Weston, Wilton, and a founder of the Theatre Artists Workshop.

Jodi’s scholarship program for talented students without means will continue, under a new name: The SBEstudio Dorothy Bryce Scholarship Fund.

For more information on the Saugatuck Church and Weston programs, click here, email info@sbestudio.com, or call 203-247-6569.

Scott Bryce and Jodi Stevens (Photo courtesy of Celebrity Parents)


Agent Orange has killed more than 300,000 US military veterans since our country left Vietnam in 1975.

The toll continues to rise.

In his new book “Agent Orange: A Short Sickening Saga of War,” Staples High School graduate/longtime Westport/prolific author Carl Addison Swanson explores the subject.

Amazon calls it “the tragic story of a Vietnam Veteran who, after 50 years of good health, is stricken with a heart disease connected directly to his exposure to the chemical AGENT ORANGE during the war.”

It is available on Kindle. Click here to order, and for more information.


The last date of lifeguards at Burying Hill Beach is this Thursday (August 24).

Compo Beach lifeguards continue through September 4.

Beach stickers are required through September 30.

Burying Hill Beach lifeguards’ last day is Thursday. (Photo/Yvonne O’Kane)


Traffic alert: The Department of Public Works’ annual roadway crack seal program begins this Thursday (August 24).

The work will continue for 2 weeks, on 15 miles of roadway. Be alert for 1-way traffic throughout the project.

Crack sealing ahead!


This week on “What’s Next in Weston,” 1st Selectwoman Sam Nestor introduces Carol Baldwin, president of the Friends of Lachat Town Farm.

It’s the first of a 2-part series, covering the programs offered at “The Coachella of Fairfield County.”

The podcast is produced by the Y’s Men of Westport and Weston.


MoCA’s fall exhibition — “Purvis Young: This is the Life I See” features 36 large scale works by the American “outsider artist.”

This is the first time that the works, from the collection of Lynne and Jack Dodick, have been on public view.

The exhibition open September 15, and runs through December 29. A reception is set for September 14 (6 p.m.; free for members, $10 for non-members. Click here to register.) Advance registration is required.

Purvis Young (1943 – 2010) was a self-taught artist who dealt with the plight of the underprivileged and the consequences of racism and daily violence through a highly distinctive visual style. He lived his entire life in the Miami neighborhood of Overtown, once an entertainment destination as well as a Black neighborhood in the segregated South. Click here for more details.

“Shackled in Blues” (Purvis Young)


Barry Kresch has spent several months observing nature, up close and personal.

He writes: “A pair of cardinals built a nest in a small tree outside my kitchen window. It was fairly low, so I was able to get some shots into it without disrupting the proceedings.

“I got much of the life cycle: first egg, mom sitting, chicks hatched, dinner is served, junior ready to take wing.

“After they left, I removed the nest. My wife told me they decay and get parasites, so the birds don’t reuse them.

“The same or another nesting pair then repeated the cycle. This time the nest was higher in the tree, not conducive to photos.”

This “life cycle” photo is perfect for our “Westport … Naturally” feature:

(Photo/Barry Kresch)


And finally … on this day in 2011 Nick Ashford — half of the husband-and-wife songwriting/production team Ashford & Simpson, and a former Westport resident — died of throat cancer. He was 70 years old.

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Roundup: Untimely Death, Frazier Forman Peters, Pesto …

The on-scene investigation of the “untimely death” of a 56-year-old woman — found yesterday at 11 a.m. — was completed at 12:45 this morning by the Westport Police Detective Bureau, assisted by the Connecticut State Police Major Crime unit. The investigation remains active.

The woman was identified as Jennifer Lindstrom, of 3 Oak Ridge Park. Westport Police responded to the residence after a housekeeper found her unresponsive at the bottom of a staircase leading to the basement.


Among the hidden-in-plain-sight treasures of Westport: Frazier Forman Peters houses.

Between 1924 and 1936, the architect designed and built over 40 distinctive stone homes in Westport (and more in surrounding towns).

On November 5 Histoury — a non-profit dedicated to significant buildings — offers a bus tour of 20 Frazier Forman Peters houses. Experts will offer commentary on their designs and histories. Several interior tours will be included.

Tickets are $75 for adults, $49 for students. Click here to purchase. For more information on Frazier Forman Peters, click here.

A Frazier Forman Peters house on Riverview Road with fieldstone facades, slate roof and copper gutters.


There’s always something new at the Westport Farmers’ Market.

Yesterday, it was this hand-lettered sign from Fort Hill Farm, offering a simple recipe for basil pesto.

“Beautiful flowers and foods, live music, kid’s crafts — it was a great vibe,” says Jo Shields Sherman, who sent the sign shot to “06880.”

(Photo/Jo Shields Sherman)

The Farmers’ Market is halfway through its season. It runs every Thursday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at the Imperial Avenue parking lot.


Report from the transfer station:

The recycling section was roped off yesterday, for electrical work to install a dedicated cardboard compactor.

The new cardboard compactor will allow cardboard to leave in its own dedicated stream, like the glass dumpster currently does.

In the meantime, temporary bins were set up this morning to accept recyclables.

(Photo and hat tip/Ken Stamm)


Here’s our first Halloween-related story of the year. (No, it is not Dunkin’s pumpkin lineup — although it is already available.)

This is about CLASP‘s “Rockin’ Halloween Bash.” Set for October 20 (Fairfield Theatre Company), it features lite bits from Little Pub, and live music from Band Central — the popular group made up of clients at the organization providing group homes and other services for people with autism and intellectual disabilities.

Click here for tickets, and other information.


Also on October 20 (and 21 and 22): StoryFest.

The 6th annual Westport Library event — the largest literary event in Connecticut — has just secured Stephen Graham Jones as moderator for the keynote conversation with Neil Gaiman.

Tickets are available starting at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, August 22. Click here to order. The event is free, but seats are limited.

In addition, Eric LaRocca will cap a full day of Saturday events with a staged reading of his new play, “Gentle Hacksaw.”

Tickets for LaRocca are $20, and are available now. They include a reception with StoryFest authors, small bites and a cash bar.

From left: Stephen Graham Jones, Neil Gaiman, Eric LaRocca.


A bit earlier than October — Sunday, August 27 — MoCA sponsors “Kaleidoscope,” a 1-day exhibition featuring works from  MoCA Gives Back Healing Arts, as well as Camp MoCA Westport participants. Food trucks will be on site.

Click here for more information.


Oliver Bub is rowing his boat — all the way to Serbia.

Or at least, in the Balkan country.

The Staples High School 2014 Biology Student of the Year is part of the men’s eight team that will represent the US at the World Rowing Championships next month in Belgrade. He was an alternate on last year’s squad.

The 6-6, 205-pound Dartmouth College graduate was Saugatuck Rowing Club’s 2015 Most Valuable Oarsman. He lives now in Oakland, and rows for the California Rowing Club.  (Hat tip: Lisa Marriott)

Oliver Bub


“Monarchs in Motion” — a free September 7 (6 p.m.) event at Earthplace — does not refer to King Charles’ recent ascension to the throne.

It’s about “understanding how insect movement and dispersal ecology informs conservation planning.” Speaker Dr. Kelsey Fisher is an “insect movement ecologist.”

There is space for 100 people. Click here to register, and for more information.

Dr. Kelsey Fisher 


Earlier this month, the Westport Sunrise Rotary Club honored 34 members with Paul Harris Society awards.

They’re presented to Rotarians who give $1,000 to the Rotary Foundation. New fellows include Holly McCarthy, Mike Hibbard, Gail Lavielle, Jeff Cohen, Helen Garten, Anil Nair, Liz Wong, Tim Wetmore, Jacquie Masumian, Karen Klein, Jen Tooker, Bruce Paul, Ron Holtz, Yvonne Senturia and Barbara Levy.

Those honored for donating $2,000 were Tom Ayres, Jane Ross, Linda Bruce, Eileen Flug, George Masumian, Mark Mathias and Carole Rubenstein.

Donors at the $3,000 level were Bill Harmer, Ann Lloyd, Steve Violette, Joe Renzulli and Arnold K. Wolgast.

Sheilan Keenan contributed $4,000; Hal Levy and Rick Jaffe gave $5,000; Bob Galan, $6,000; Brian Strong and Arlo Ellison, $8,000, and — topping the Paul Harris Society list — Eric Zielinski and Martin Burger, at $9,000.


Tessie DeMattia — a chef who worked for over 40 years with her brother Frank DeMace, the founder of Mario’s Place — died Tuesday.

Tessie is survived by her daughter, Linda Voulgarakis (John) of West Haven; son James of Dummerston, Vermont; grandchildren Dawn Blinn, Libby Mazzella, David Aronson, Nikki Voulgarakis and Harry Voulgarakis, and 4 great-grandchildren.

In addition to her husband Liberty Michael DeMattia, she was predeceased by her daughter Sandra Blinn; siblings Dominick, Frank, Michael and Joseph DeMace and Marie Wallacem and granddaughter Jacqueline Perez.

A funeral service will be tomorrow (Friday, August 18, 11 a.m., Shaughnessey Banks Funeral Home, Fairfield). Friends may greet her family one hour prior to the service. Interment will follow in Oak Lawn Cemetery.

Tessie DeMattia


Sunil Hirani calls today’s “Westport … Naturally” photo — shot at Compo Beach — “Leapfrog.”

Look closely to see why.

(Photo/Sunil Hirani)


And finally … on this day in 1977, Elvis Presley’s funeral was held at Graceland.

The “King of Rock ‘n’ Roll” had several phases in his career. Among them:

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