Tag Archives: ospreys

Roundup: Fireworks, Farmers’ Market, Falsettoland …

Heading to the fireworks tomorrow?

“06880” wants your photos!

Picnics and barbecues; kids with sparklers; parties; red-white-and-blue outfits — share your patriotic spirit.

The only thing we don’t want is photos of the actual fireworks, bursting in air. Anyone can see those images anywhere

Send anything else via email: 06880blog@gmail.com. Deadline is 11 p.m. tomorrow.

Here’s looking at you, America!

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If local farmers grow it, you can buy it at the Westport Farmers’ Market.

And if you grow it — and have too much of it — the Market wants it.

Extra lettuce, tomatoes, zucchini, whatever — donate it, through the WFM and Grow-a-Row.

Grow-A-Row is a volunteer effort to grow and donate fresh local seasonal produce to food-insecure populations in Fairfield County. Based at the Westport Community Gardens, Grow-A-Row plants, tends, harvests and collects nutritious donations of fresh produce and herbs, then delivers it directly to agencies in need.

You don’t even need to grow it yourself, though. If you bought too much fresh produce, bring it too.

Deliveries are at the Farmers’ Market (Imperial Avenue parking lot), any Thursday between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.

Produce will be delivered by Food Rescue US – Fairfield County volunteers. The Bridgeport FEED Center, Fridgport, Career Resources CT, and Westport Housing Authority will receive the donations.

If your cup (and table) runneth over, donate produce to Grow-a-Row, at the Westport Farmers’ Market.

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Music Theater of Connecticut’s stirring production of “Falsettoland” — starring a Westport father-and-son acting duo — took top honors at Monday’s Connecticut Critics Circle Awards. The event, which celebrates work from the state’s professional theaters during the 2021–22 season, was held at Long Wharf Theatre.

Westport’s Dan Sklar won Outstanding Actor in a Musical. His son Ari was honored for Outstanding Debut.

Kevin Connors was named Top Director for “Falsettolands.” He also earned the Tom Killen Award, for lifetime service to the theater.

The Westport Country Playhouse was cited too. Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical went to Daniel J. Maldonado for “Next to Normal”; Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play was won by Sharina Martin, for “Doubt.”

Congratulations to all!

From left: Dan Sklar and Ari Sklar.

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Speaking of awards: “The Lisa Wexler Show,” hosted by Westport’s own, won 1st place for Best Radio Interview at the National Federation of Press Women’s awards ceremony on Saturday in Fargo, North Dakota.

The honor was for Wexler’s live interview with Congressman Jim Himes on January 7, 2021, just hours after he had spent the night at the Capitol following the January 6 riot. Click here to hear the show.

“The Lisa Wexler Show” is broadcast weekdays from 10 a.m. to noon on AM WICC, AM 600 and 107.3 FM.

Lisa Wexler

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The cell tower saga continues.

An application by Tarpon Towers to build a 124-foot structure on private property at 92 Greens Farms Road was filed with the state on May 26. The town of Westport received notice of this filing and is coordinating logistics with the applicant.

Town officials notified Tarpon of a desire to explore an alternative site along the railroad right of way, and is trying to get the state Department of Transportation to approve that site. Information is available on the Connecticut Siting Council’s website.

A public hearing is scheduled for August 9. A final decision is expected a month or two later. (Hat tip: Stephen Goldstein)

A cell tower been proposed for the property on the left: 92 Greens Farms Road. (Photo courtesy of Google Maps)

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If the fireworks are not for you, but you don’t want to stay home tomorrow (Thursday, June 30), consider Jazz at the Post.

Guitar master Paul Bollenback headlines this week’s 2 shows at VFW Joseph J. Clinton Post 399 (465 Riverside Avenue, 7 p.m. and 9 p.m.; $10 cover). He’s joined by Mark Lewandowski (bass), Jason Tiemann (drums) and the Jazz Rabbi himself, saxophonist Greg Wall.

In addition to cool jazz, there’s a hot new menu from chef Derek Furino (from 6:30 p.m. on). Reservations are strongly suggested: jazzatthepost@gmail.com.

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The Westport PBA Scholarship Fund helps college-bound children of our Police Department. Two scholarships are also awarded to Staples High School seniors who will pursue degrees in law enforcement.

Major funding comes from an annual golf tournament. This year’s is set for July 18, at Tashua Knolls in Trumbull.

It’s a scramble tournament, shotgun start. The day includes breakfast, the tourney itself (9 a.m.), and a cocktail reception with open bar (1 to 3 p.m.).

There’s a 50/50 raffle, other raffle prizes, and prizes for longest drive, closest to pin, closest to line, and the winning foursome.

The cost is $250 per golfer. Sponsorships are available at the $1,000, $3,000, $5,000 and $10,000 levels. Checks should be sent to the Westport PBA Scholarship Fund, 50 Jesup Road, Westport, CT 06880. Questions? Email jlauria@westportct.gov, or call 203-803-0215.

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They can’t believe it’s time. But Staples High School’s Class of 1972 holds its 50th reunion September 9-11. Events include a Saturday night dinner at the Gaelic-American Club in Fairfield. with music by the Reunion Band. There’s an informal gathering Friday night at the Black Duck, and a get-together Sunday at Compo Beach. For more information and reservations, click here.

1972 Staples High School yearbook

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Osprey alert!

Carolyn Doan writes:

“I just returned from Block Island for a few days. Even in that short time, these guys grew so much. The chicks are exercising their wings and getting ready to fledge (if they haven’t already.) I didn’t see them lift up from the nest today, but they are ready!”

(Photo/Carolyn Doan)

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Westport has one less nail salon.

Luxe Nail Spa — in the shopping plaza opposite Fresh Market — has closed, reportedly due to high rent. The owners are seeking a new location, perhaps in Stamford.

Luxe nail opened in 2015. It is now closed.

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Staples High School Class of 2019 graduate and former Saugatuck Rowing Club member Justin Schmidt is part of a team that beat the defending men’s lightweight quadruple sculls 2 weeks ago in Florida. They’ll represent the US at the U23 World Rowing Championships next month in Varese, Italy.

Schmidt now rows at the University of Delaware. He and his Conshohocken Rowing Center teammates have set up a GoFundMe page, to help offset costs of the trip. Click here to help.

Justin Schmidt (3rd from left), with teammates and coaches.

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Carol Fisher died in her Westport home on Sunday. She was 94, and had fought Parkinson’s disease for a decade.

The New York City native graduated from  Queens  College at age 19. She worked at Little Golden Books and for a movie magazine before taking a job as acquisitions editor at Pyramid Books. There she developed and edited a book by Peter Max, plus health-focused cookbooks and short biographies of movie stars. Pyramid Books became, as a result of her efforts, the US publisher of  bestselling author Barbara Cartland.  Carol  also worked as an editor at Harcourt Brace.

Her life changed in 1978, when she married longtime Westport resident Milton Fisher, an attorney, investment banker, author,  and teacher of the popular Applied Creativity adult education class.

Together they founded Wildcat Publishing Company. Carol brought her editorial skills and experience to the publication of books including the  Holocaust memoir Dry Tears, by Nechama Tec,  a resistance classic, and The Fall of Japan by Westporter William Craig.

Carol Fisher was a devoted participant in and organizer of stimulating programs at the Westport Senior Center, Westport-Weston Arts Council, and Westport Library. The Senior Center recognized her efforts to enliven and improves the lives of seniors with a Service to Seniors Award in 2013.

As executive director  of the Renée B. Fisher Foundation, she was instrumental in creating and sustaining  initiatives including Milton Fisher Scholarship for Innovation and Creativity,  the annual Renée B. Fisher Piano Competition, and the Books for Teachers program  that has built thousands of classroom libraries in under-resourced schools across the country. The Pequot Library in Southport, where the program began, remains its flagship program.

Carol Fisher was an enthusiastic member of several book clubs and a movie discussion club, and was also an avid bridge player. She was a member of the Westport Rotary Club, and a longtime member of Temple Israel.

She loved hosting multi-generational gatherings on Thanksgiving and Passover every year, as well as month-long family reunions during summers. The last gathering she hosted coincided with her 94th birthday this year.

She was predeceased by her husband Milton and brother Leonard Plaine. Carol Fisher is survived by her stepdaughter Shelley (James Fishkin) Fisher Fishkin,  grandchildren Joseph and Robert Fishkin, and great-grandchildren Anna Ardith Fishkin Franklin and Simon Asher Fishkin Franklin, all of California. 

A private virtual memorial service is planned for late summer. Friends interested in attending should email sfishkin@stanford.edu. Contributions in Carol’s memory may be sent to the Anti-Defamation League.

Carol Fisher

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Eileen Lavigne Flug spotted these “Westport … Naturally” birds early the other morning, along Soundview Drive.

Wonder if they got the worms …

(Photo/Eileen Lavigne Flug)

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And finally … in honor of “Falsettoland”‘s honors from the Connecticut Critics Circle (story above), enjoy this bit of that memorable musical:

 

 

 

 

Roundup: Taste Of Westport, Juneteenth, You Be You Day …

“A Taste of Westport” returned yesterday, after a 2-year COVID absence.

A record crowd — starved for great food for an even better cause — showed up at the Inn at Longshore. It was the perfect venue for the festive, almost-summer event.

A small portion of the large “Taste of Westport” crowd at the Inn at Longshore.

The traditional fundraiser for CLASP — the local non-profit celebrating its 40th year serving adults with autism and developmental disabilities — featured plenty of tasting stations, live music from the Bar Car Band`, a silent auction and a raffle.

Restaurants and vendors participating included Artisan, BE Chocolat, Black Bear Wines & Spirits, Boathouse, Cylinder, Evarito’s, Freixenet Mionetto, Little Dumpling House, Gabriele’s, La Plage, Little Pub, Lindsay’s Handmade, Mrs. London’s, Newsylum, Nordic Fish, Post Oak, Rive Bistro, Rizzuto’s, Romanacci, Tablao, Tarantino, The Spread and Walrus Alley.

It’s not an easy time to own a restaurant. Last night, all of them went above and beyond the call.

Artisan offered (among other items) a very tasty goat dish. Inn at Longshore principal Michael Ryan is at right. (Photos/Dan Woog)

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On June 19, 1865, Union troops  liberated enslaved African Americans in Galveston, Texas. Fifteen men from Westport took part, with the 29th Connecticut Colored Infantry Regiment.

For years, the day was informally called “Juneteenth.” Finally, it’s a federal holiday (Monday, June 20).

The Westport Museum for History & Culture celebrates with 2 events.

Tonight (Thursday, June 16, 7 p.m.) historic interpreter Dontavius Williams offers a virtual performance of the experiences of an enslaved man. Click here to register.

A walking tour — based on a 2018-19 exhibit about Westport’s African American history — is set for Saturday June 18 (10 a.m. and 2 p.m.). Click here to register.

The Westport Museum’s walking tour will include a stop at historic 22 1/2 Main Street.

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The Levitt Pavilion has never looked better.

As a quasi-town, quasi-private facility, the Pavilion itself is responsible for maintaining its ornamental plantings and beds — including the ones between the Riverwalk and lawn.

Every year, Friends of the Levitt volunteers answer the call. This year, Gault Energy helped out by donating all the mulch.

So the next time you enjoy a free show — enjoy the “free” scenery too.

Work day at the Levitt Pavilion.. (Photo/Jimmy Izzo)

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It was “You Be You Day” yesterday, at Westport’s elementary schools.

The night before, Kings Highway families helped “chalk the walk.”

Kings Highway 1st grader Siena Adams helps chalk the walk. Her mother, Cori Caputo Adams; is a Kings Highway and Staples High School (Class of 1994) alumnus.

Dozens of youngsters and parents wrote kind, motivating chalk messages on the walkway in front of the school. The goal was to encourage every student to be proud of who he or she is — and to feel proud too of being part of a community that accepts and celebrates them exactly as they are.

In the morning, KHS staff and students were greeted with colorful, positive sayings. It was a great start to “You Be You Day,” says PTA board member Meghan Bell.

Meanwhile, Greens Farms Elementary School celebrated in several ways.

Teachers read books with positive messages to their classes. Youngsters wore “You Be You” shirts. The sidewalk was chalked

And there was this bulletin board too:

(Photo courtesy of Leann Duggan)

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The Westport Kiwanis Club provides annual scholarships to graduating seniors who show exemplary community involvement and academic achievement.

This year’s recipients are Lena Lemcke, Elena Lim, Jaden Mueller and Ella Williams.

Funds come from Kiwanis’ annual Minuteman Triathlon. This year’s’ event is September 11, at Compo Beach. Click here for information and registration.

Kiwanis officials and scholarship recipients, at the recent awards ceremony (from left): Todd Ehrlich, Dave Fuggit, Jaden Mueller, Judy Stripp, Lena Lemcke, Rob Gould, Elena Lim, Elaine Daignault. Not pictured: Ella Williams.

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Osprey admirer/expert Carolyn Doan visited the Fresh Market nest this week. She was happily surprised to find “2 heads being shaded by mom. They must have been hot, as their mouths were open in the sun directly on the nest.

“They seemed to be having a serious chat with her. She listened patiently. She made a quick trip away from the nest. When she returned, they were thrilled.”

(Photo/Carolyn Doan)

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What could be more mundane than a midday chat?

Martin Greenberg captured this scene, for our “Westport … Naturally” feature:

(Photo/Martin Greenberg)

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And finally … in honor of our elementary schools’ great “You Be You Day” yesterday:

 

 

  

 

Roundup: Ducks, Ospreys, Kindness …

The Great Duck Race returns this year. But — just as ducks migrate — so does the popular Westport Sunrise Rotary fundraiser.

From 2008 to ’19, thousands of yellow ducks bobbed in the Saugatuck River. COVID forced it into a virtual format the past 2 years.

On July 9, the Great Duck Race will be run as a giant water sluice on Jesup Green. Tomorrow (Sunday, May 1), the Rotarians will see how it works as a duck race track. AJ Penna is providing a truck and front loader. Water comes from the Westport Fire Department.

Everyone is invited to watch tomorrow. “Ducks” in full costume will pose for photos.

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Also on Jesup Green: The Westport Library Book Sale.

It opened yesterday, with the usual packed crowd. It continues today (Saturday, April 30) until 5 p.m. Tomorrow (Sunday, May 1, noon to 5 p.m.) all items are half price. On Monday (May 2, 9 a.m. to noon), fill a bag for $5, or purchase individual items for half-price.

The Westport Library Book Sale yesterday. (Photo/Dan Woog)

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Kindness is always on the Porch menu. Everyone feels comfortable at the Cross Highway café.

Tomorrow through May 15, they’re running a “Kids Kindness Contest.” Everyone in grades K-12 is invited to share a story of how they are kind to friends, strangers or within the community.

The K-2nd grade and 3rd-5th grade winners each earn an ice cream social with 9 friends. The middle and high school winners each get a fun lunch with 3 friends.

Forms are available at the Porch, or by clicking here.

The Porch is always “kind” of cool and great.

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Want to surprise the woman in your life the day before Mothers Day?

Take her to “Supper & Soul” next Saturday (May 7).

It’s a great event, with lots of reasons she’ll be thrilled. The 8 p.m. concert — remember live concerts? — features Cris Jacobs. He’s back in Westport, after a searing show at the 2018 Blues Views & BBQ Festival. The opening act is Gnorm.

The show is at the Westport Library, where the new, state-of-the-art sound system will blow you away.

Tickets ($90) include a 3-course dinner at a downtown restaurant (6 p.m.; list below), including tax and tip (though drinks are on you). $40 concert-only tickets are available too.

Participating restaurants include:

  • 190 Main
  • Amis
  • Arezzo
  • Basso
  • Capuli
  • De Tapas
  • Don Memo
  • Manna Toast
  • Spotted Horse
  • Wafu
  • Walrus Alley

And … after the show, your ticket is good for happy hour pricing on drinks at any of the participating restaurant. Try a different one than dinner!

Click here for tickets and more information. Click below to see Cris Jacobs. The event is sponsored by the Westport Weston Chamber of Commerce, and the Westport Library.

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There may be no free lunch. But there was a free sapling giveaway yesterday.

Dozens of Westporters took advantage of the Arbor Day gift at Town Hall, courtesy of the Tree Board.

Residents Robert Sohmer and Debbie Fisher showed up — then offered to help. They’re shown in the photo below, as Tree Board members Alice Ely and Monica Buesser prep saplings.

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Speaking of nature: Recent reports of the Fresh Market ospreys’ demise are premature.

Carolyn Doan reports: “All is well with the pair. They are incubating now, which means they sit very low in the nest and are impossible to see.

“They are really a really strong pair, and are co-parenting. They give each other breaks while one is in the incubating position. They call out to each other when one needs a break or is hungry.

“Yesterday I watched the female sit at the top of a dead tree behind Terrain. and preen herself for 45 minutes. After faint calls from the nest, she went back. Then the male popped up. He went to a nearby perch and preened.

“The ospreys returned a week early this year, so chicks may come sooner than usual.”

A Fresh Market osprey, yesterday afternoon. (Photo/Carolyn Doan)

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Remember the Yarn Bomber? In the darkest days of the pandemic, she brightened the town with her late-night creations.

Molly Alger was not the Yarn Bomber. But — responding to an “06880” offer — she took “secret” lessons, via FaceTime.

The actual Bomber left yarn on Molly’s porch in the middle of the night. Molly  created 2 bombs for her own trees, and 2 for friends.

She also did one for the Senior Center. I lasted through 2 winters and one summer, since November 2020. But it was looking a little ragged.

Now — just in time for spring — Molly has created a new Senior Center yarn bomb.

The pandemic has eased. But the Yarn Bomber — and her protégé — live on.

The Senior Center’s new yarn bomb.

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29 Staples High School students and 6 adults returned recently from 10 days in Spain. It was the first overseas trip for a large group in a decade.

The packed itinerary included visits to Granada, Cordoba, Seville, Madrid and Barcelona. Highlights included Alhambra, scavenger hunts in cities, an olive farm, guided city tours, a flamenco lesson and show, the Prado Museum, a churro breakfast and cooking class, Sagrada Familia, Las Ramblas, a Good Friday religious procession, and the first women’s soccer match ever played at Camp Nou — with a crowd of 91,000.

Future trips planned by Staples’ World Language Department include Germany next spring, and a February journey to Panama focusing on STEM topics.

Cheering for the Barcelona women’s team at Camp Nou.

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Staples High School’s boys basketball team will have a new look next year.

Head coach Colin Devine is stepping down, to pursue administrative positions. In 15 years at the helm, he built the Wreckers into an FCIAC contender.

Coach Colin Devine (far left) and members of the 2018 Staples High School boys basketball team took the #ALSPepperChallenge.

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Services have been announced for Charlie Capalbo. The former Fairfield Ludlowe High hockey player battled 4 cancers before succumbing last week, one month before his 24th birthday. He is the grandson of Westporters Richard Epstein and Ina Chadwick; his mother Jennifer Wilde Capalbo is a Staples High grad.

Charlie’s wake is Wednesday, May 4 (2 to 8 p.m., Penfield Pavilion, 323 Fairfield Beach Road, Fairfield). A funeral mass is set for Thursday, May 5 (10 a.m., St. Thomas Aquinas Parish, 1719 Post Road, Fairfield). Burial will be private.

Charlie and his mother, Jennifer Wilde Capalbo.

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Today’s New York Times carries one of its most harrowing stories ever on the war in Ukraine. It begins:

 The wind carried the smell of death across the street. The body of the dead man, burned, mutilated and barely recognizable, was taken from the refrigerator and laid on a metal gurney. The coroner smoked a cigarette and unzipped the black bag.

It was a beautiful spring day. There had been no shelling that morning. And Oksana Pokhodenko, 34, gasped, blinking, at the charred corpse. That was not her brother, she told herself, that was not Oleksandr. That was barely a human.

Her brother lived once. The family patriarch for 20 years since their father died, he called his sister every day after the war started as he fled with his family to a village, Husarivka, wedged between rolling wheat fields. He kept calling — “Hello, Little One. We’re good. How are you?” — but never mentioned that the Russians had overrun the village where he was hiding.

Ms. Pokhodenko, in black jeans, a black jacket and barely laced sneakers, struggled to keep looking at the body. Her brother had taught her how to ride a bike and had loved to watch cartoons for hours with his son. To his sister, he was a “stone wall.” This was a charred husk. Half of the man’s skull was gone, and his chest cavity was splayed open.

The photos are as chilling as the writing. They’re all by Tyler Hicks, the 1988 Staples High School graduate and Pulitzer Prize winning journalist. Click here for the full story, and Tyler’s images.

Some of Tyler Hicks’ latest photos, illustrating atrocities in committed in Ukraine. (Photos/Tyler Hicks for the New York Times)

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“Westport … Naturally” waves goodbye to April (and hello to May!) with this gorgeous image from the Library Riverwalk:

(Photo/June Rose Whittaker)

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And finally … on this day in 1803, the US purchased the Louisiana Territory from France. We spent $15 million — and more than doubled the size of our nation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Roundup: Street Sweeping, Trees Falling, Album Releasing …

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1st Selectwoman Jen Tooker has invited Westporters to meet — by RTM district — at Town Hall. She and other town officials listening to their concerns.

And responding.

Dave Lowrie writes:

“Many thanks to officials and the Westport Police Department for the ongoing traffic and safety meetings by district over the last few months. And thanks also to our District 7 neighbors who voiced their concerns in person and via email.

“As a green pedestrian, my issue centered on walking and biking access along North Bulkley Avenue toward the Post Road. Two days after the meeting, through Monday, Public Works road chief Joe Izzo and his crew of 2 sweepers cleaned the shoulders along North Bulkley, and all side roads.

Kudos to 1st Selectwoman Tooker for moderating the Town Hall session, powerhouse RTM member Brandi Briggs and her counterparts for engaging constituents, town engineer Keith Wilberg and his staff. and concerned members of the Westport PD.”

North Bulkley Avenue, looking toward Old Road. (Photo/Dave Lowrie)

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Amy Ancel has been watching the osprey nest at Terrain. She writes:

“Sadly, it’s been empty for some time. The male returned in March. In early April I last saw him on the platform, loudly and plaintively calling his heart out to his mate. I don’t think she ever returned.

“It was heartbreaking to hear. I’m just a curious and casual observer, but I think we’ve lost our dear and favorite breeding couple for good. It’s so sad. Nature is brutal.”

Have any “06880” readers spotted the osprey recently? If so, click “Comments” below.

Ospreys, in early April. (Photo/Carolyn Doan)

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It was not exactly the Welcome Wagon.

Last week, a family moved in to a newly built Gorham Avenue home.

In Monday night’s rain and windstorm, a tree fell on their property.

There was a bit of damage to their porch, and lovely copper roof.

All we can tell them is: It’s not always like this!

Cleaning up on Gorham Avenue (Photo/Mark Mathias)

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Tickets to see multimedia superstar Shonda Rhimes in person at the Westport Library’s “Booked for the Evening” fundraiser have sold out.

But Westporters — and anyone else — can still join the June 1 (8 p.m.) celebration, via livestream. Tickets are $25; click here to purchase.

No recording will be made of the program.

Shonda Rhimes

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Gabriele’s has added lunch and brunch to its dinner menu.

The Italian steakhouse that replaced Positano next to the Westport Country Playhouse is now open Tuesday through Friday noon to 2:30 p.m., and weekends 11:30 am to 2:30 p.m.

Dig in!

Gabriele’s Steakhouse.

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Among other highlights, Westport Library’s VersoFest featured the debut of the first independent record label of any public library in the country.

There’s a limited pressing of the yellow vinyl and digital album, featuring some of the best emerging and eclectic talent in the tri-state region.

All preorders of “Verso Records: Volume 1” come with digital downloads of Daniprobably’s “Cowboy” (indie pop), Alexandra Burnet & the Stable Six’s “You’re Okay” (ethereal singer/songwriter); Ports of Spain’s “All You Can Carry” (indie rock), and The Zambonis’ “Gretzky Twist” (hockey rock).

Click here for details.

The album cover, designed by Tammy Winser.

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The pandemic pushed Staples High School’s Class Of 1970 50th reunion back 2 years. They’re on for this year, on August 26-28  — and they’re turning it into a joint celebration of their 70th birthdays.

The high point — as always for their class — is a Saturday Night dinner-dance at Norwalk Inn, with live music from the class band Smoke.

Reservations must be made online (click here). The deadline is July 20. For more information, call Mark Smollin: 626-584-3997.

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Our “Westport … Naturally” feature is big on nature — flowers, trees, animals. We seldom include human beings.

But Rowene Weems captured this intriguing photo Monday, near Winslow Park. Tree trimming is important work.

A few hours later, wind and rain caused power outages for over 1,100 Westporters.

Hopefully, none in this area.

(Photo/Rowene Weems Photography)

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And finally … because today is 4/20:

Roundup: Patsie Bonardi, Keith Haring, Broadway …

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It took a while for this news to make it here. But it was worth waiting for.

After a long and legendary teaching career in Westport, beloved elementary school icon Patsie Bonardi returned to her hometown of Bethlehem, New Hampshire.

For her 90th birthday in June, the town gathered along Main Street. They celebrated her with a surprise “reverse parade.” Residents gathered outside the theater, post office and library, holding signs and cheering as she rode by in her convertible — with a police and fire truck escort.

Elementary school students held handmade signs.

Bonardi was a longtime supporter of the Colonial Theater, and served as a library trustee and Home Health Care Board member. As part of her birthday celebration, residents raised $1,300 in her name for the theater.

(Click here for the full story, from the Littleton Courier. Hat tips: John and Carol Waxman)

Patsie Bonardi, during her parade. (Photo/Angel Larcom)

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The “Piece by Piece” artwork was unveiled Friday at the Westport Library. Sixty local artists each contributed a panel — not knowing how it would fit into the “big picture.” They had no idea what the finished piece was.

Turns out to be a work by Keith Haring.

The final work impressed the Westport Library crowd. (Photo/Miggs Burroughs)

Individual panels were on sale, with proceeds split between the Library and the artist of that particular panel.

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Adam Bremen was born with cerebral palsy. He’s used an electric wheelchair all his life.

In 2017, he decided to become more physically fit. Thanks to water aerobics and the Keto diet, he lost 45 pounds. His next step was to create a good-tasting Keto-based snack bar. He called it Keto Krisp.

This past weekend — after quarantining for 16 months — Adam traveled from California to Westport. He visited his sister Erin, who lives here.

Adam had never kayaked before. But the crew at Westport Paddle Club took care of him. He and his family had a fantastic time.

He’s thanking them by sending a package of Keto Krispy bars. And he’ll wear his WPC t-shirt proudly.

Adam Bremen and Westport Paddle Club owner Robbie Guimond (front), with Adam’s family and WPC staff members.

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Sure, the Levitt Pavilion offers 50 nights of free summer entertainment.

But here’s a different kind of free show, at a very different site.

Karen Elizaga lives on Soundview Drive, between Norwalk and Westport Avenues. This Friday (July 16, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.), she’s hosting a group of Broadway stars.

Devin Ilaw (“Miss Saigon,” “Les Miserables”), Sarah Beth Pfeifer (“Lightning Thief”), Staples High School graduate Mia Gentile (“Kinky Boots”) and others will sing in her front yard. Everyone is welcome to gather on the beach, and listen.

The goal is to raise awareness — and funds, if you’d like to lend support — of Broadway for Arts Education. The non-profit provides arts education to underserved youth in New York, Haiti and India.

It should be a great event. And even though there’s no ticket, feel “free” to donate to this important group.

Free concert on Soundview.

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From horseback riders to model plane flyers, there’s always something going on at Sherwood Island State Park.

But yesterday might have been a first: an in-the-water wedding.

Patricia Auber was attracted by the singing and tambourine playing. She wanted to keep a respectful distance, so there are no details about the bridge and groom. Still, she did capture this wonderful photo:

A minister leads the ceremony, in Long Island Sound. (Photo/Patricia Auber)

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Noted Westport photographer Tom Kretsch, and Shapleigh Smith of Stowe, Vermont have been friends for 65 years.

The Newtown natives parted ways after high school. But they reunited in Stowe, where Shap lives and Tom bought a timeshare. at the Trapp Family Lodge.

Last winter they spent time photographing the back roads of the Northeast Kingdom. Now they’re showing their work, back in their hometown of Newtown.

This Thursday (July 15, 5:30 to 7 p.m.) is the opening of “Down on Vermont Country Road: Old Friends and New Visions” at the Cyrenius Booth Library on Main Street.  The show runs through Labor Day.

One of Tom Kretsch’s Vermont photos.

Staples High School boys soccer tri-captain Bruno Guiduli knows the important of giving back.

During the past year he’s raised over $2,300 for TOPSoccer. The non-profit helps special needs youngsters play the sport Bruno loves.

This Saturday (July 17, 8 a.m. to noon), he invites everyone to Wakeman Field. He’ll set up a special goal he built with his father, Barry. All are welcome to test their skills, while learning about TOPSoccer. Donations will be gratefully accepted.

Bruno Guiduli, with the TOPSoccer goal he invites everyone to shoot at.

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This weekend’s Fresh Market osprey update, from Carolyn Doan:

“I can’t believe how big they’ve gotten. I was there for breakfast. Dad brought a fish, right on time. He called from a tree to wake everyone up, and went over to the nest once all 3 were ready to eat. Two of the siblings are very affectionate with one another, which was wonderful to watch.

“They were stretching their wings a lot, so fledging is imminent.”

(Photo/Carolyn Doan)

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Speaking of young birds: Today’s “Westport … Naturally” photo shows a pair of gorgeous baby robins. Cutest image ever?

(Photo/Jacqueline Byrne)

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Kendall Gardiner spotted this on Facebook:

A man in France takes care of the grave of an American soldier, killed on D-Day in Normandy, age 29. He’d like to contact any relatives he can find.

The soldier’s name was Sgt. Glenn Everett “Tex” Moats. He lived in Fairfield. If any “06880” readers remember the family, click here to respond. (Hat tip: Kendall Gardiner)

Sgt. Glenn Everett “Tex” Moats

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Nadine Cherna is proud of all her piano students. But she’s particularly proud of Eric Gordonos. The 13-year-old plays everything she asks, everything he can find — and then composes his own pieces. Here is an excerpt:

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And finally … speaking of talented young pianists, today would have been Van Cliburn’s 87th birthday. He rocketed too fame in 1958, when — just 23 years old — he won the 1st International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow, at the height of the Cold War.

Cliburn died in 2013, at 78.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Roundup: Bolts, Ospreys

Uest

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Yesterday, Superintendent of Schools Thomas Scarice addressed the easing of COVID restrictions in Connecticut. He said:

Both the CDC and state Department of Public Health have maintained their recommendation for masks inside the school building for both vaccinated and unvaccinated students and staff for the remainder of the current school year.  However, with our low community transmission rates in both the town and our schools, as well as an increasing number of vaccinated staff and students, masks will no longer be required for students when outdoors for both recess and PE.

The State Department of Education announced that there will be no remote learning requirement for the upcoming school year (2021-2022). The Westport Public Schools will not offe remote learning as a permanent instructional option for next school year, unless otherwise mandated by the CSDE. The remote learning option, like a number of other approaches and investments, has been critical to our remarkable success this year. Although students have experienced success in this pandemic year, if anything else, this year clearly proved that there is no replacement for in-person learning. We look forward to welcoming all students in-person for the start of the 2021-2022 school year.

As the end of year events begin to pick up, I ask that we all do our part to continue to thank our faculty, and all of our support staff across the system, for their extraordinary work this year. There was no playbook. We approached the year in 4-6 week increments. Yet as we look back, we carefully navigated a generational pandemic to serve our students and while earnestly attending to their social, emotional, and academic needs. A great deal will be written about this era. I, for one, will remember the people and the acts of kindness, commitment, and professionalism that carried us towards an increasingly brighter light at the end of this tunnel.

No more masks at recess!

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The town of Westport has leased 2 new Chevy Bolts for staff field work. They’ll be used for municipal inspections by the Public Works Engineering Division and the Assessor’s Office.

A cost benefit analysis has proven that these vehicles are both environmentally friendly, and cost effective.

The choice of Chevy Bolts was based on their overall low price, good reputation, and compact size. The cars also have a low maintenance cost and a longer expected service life than competitors. Both vehicles are at the standard option level.

1st Selectman Jim Marpe says, “We are very proud of Westport’s advancement in electric vehicle usage and municipal charging stations. Investments such as the Police Department’s purchase of a Model 3 Tesla are proving to be beneficial, and we expect the same for the municipal fleet. These Bolts help move Westport closer toward meeting sustainability goals.”

From left: Assessor Paul Friia, 1st Selectman Jim Marpe, Dawn Henry of Sustainable Westport, Finance director Gary Conrad, Public Works director Peter Ratkiewich with the new Chevy Bolts.

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Several readers have not seen the Fresh Market ospreys for awhile. I asked “06880”‘s resident expert, Carolyn Doan, for an update She says:

“The osprey are incubating right now. so they are very difficult to see in a nest that is high up.

“Usually the female does most of the sitting while the male brings back food. He does take over for her from time to time to give her a much needed stretch or break. She is the one with a more speckled chest. His chest is more white (in case you wanted to try and discern between the two if you notice one in a tree).

“If not fishing, the one taking a break is usually in a nearby tree. In this case there is a big pine tree to the right of the Fresh Market nest. You can usually see one of the pair there. Or look across the street behind Dunkin Donuts. At the top of a bare tree behind the building you will see a large bird. (Usually the male. He loves this spot for some reason.”)

“The babies are due at the end of the month!”

A recent osprey photo. (Carolyn Doan)

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Surprise! Beechwood Arts — the innovative, immersive series — opens its grounds tomorrow (Sunday, May 23, 52 Weston Road), from noon to 5 p.m.

The copper beech and other trees and flowers are blooming. And, founders Frederic Chiu and Jeanine Esposito say, they miss their Sunday afternoons with their friends.

“Stop in to say hello, have a lemonade, walk the grounds, bring your own picnic,” they say.

“The main house will not be open. But it’s likely you’ll hear Frederic practicing for his Classical Smackdown II (Thursday, May 27, 7 p.m.)

“Our 5-star rated carriage house and studio summer retreat will be open, so you can take a peek while you’re here.” Both will be listed for summer rent on AirBnB June 1.

The Beechwood grounds.

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Yesterday’s mention of the anniversary of Charles Lindbergh’s flight across the Atlantic prompted this email from alert — and history-minded — reader Matt Murray:

“My grandmother was a friend of the engine builder/designer Charlie Lawrence (2nd autograph from left in photo below).

The day before the flight, Mr. Lawrence asked my grandmother, ‘Do you want to see this fellow take off at 5 a.m. to fly solo across the Atlantic?’

“She replied, ‘Charlie, you’re drunk.’ She did not go. But because she was fluent in French, he asked her to write Lindergh’s letter of introduction for when he landed. As a thank you, she received this picture of Lindbergh and Lawrence and their signatures, taken just before he took off.”

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Yesterday’s “06880” also brought mention of Margot Liotta. The 2019 Staples High School graduate was one of 4 recipients of a Drew Friedman Community Arts Center Foundation scholarship.

Turns out she’s as artist in more ways than one.

In addition to the photograph that helped win her a grant, she’s a bass guitarist, singer and songwriter. She’s transferrin to Berklee College of Music — and has just released her first song, “Aries.”

Her boyfriend and former Staples classmate, Zach Rogers, produced it, and plays guitar. He’s transferring to Brown University.

Margot and Zach have played together for several years. They’ve done gigs at Wakeman Town Farm — and will play there again this summer.

A third ’19 grad, Kevin Ludy, did the artwork and promotion. He’s studying music management at Syracuse University.

Click here for various ways to hear (and purchase) “Aries.”

Margot Liotta and Zach Rogers, at Wakeman Town Farm. (Photo/Jarret Liotta)

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Today’s “Westport … Naturally” photo is yet another view of a Canada goose, and her goslings. They look so cute when they’re young.

(Photo/Tom Lowrie)

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And finally … on this day in 1762, Trevi Fountain was officially completed and inaugurated in Rome.

Roundup: Masks, Gatsby Day, Ospreys …

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Yesterday’s announcement by the Centers for Disease Control that fully vaccinated people can stop wearing masks in most situations — including indoors — will be effective next Wednesday (May 19) in Connecticut, Governor Lamont said yesterday.

That’s the date other restrictions will be lifted too.

Connecticut residents can’t abandon their masks just yet. Wait until May 19! (Photo collage/Miggs Burroughs)

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Happy Gatsby Day!

A few years ago, 1st Selectman Jim Marpe declared May 14 “Gatsby Day” in Westport.

That’s the date — 101 years ago today — that F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald signed their lease for the house at what is now 244 South Compo Road.

Marpe said that Gatsby Day should be celebrated in perpetuity. COVID has prevented celebrations last year — the centennial! — and this. But historian Deej Webb (who literally wrote the book on “Gatsby in Connecticut”) wants to make sure that Westport remembers the day.

It’s interesting to note that the Roaring ’20s — the decade associated so closely with the legendary author and his wife — were a direct result of the influenza pandemic of 1918-19.

Will a similar decade follow COVID? And if so, will the direct result of the Roaring ’20s — the Great Depression — ensue too?

FUN FITZGERALD FACT: Deej Webb says that the iconic shot of F. Scott and Zelda in front of their Westport house was not, as is often assumed, photoshopped. It’s legit:

We know the Westport Country Playhouse is a town jewel.

So does the National Endowment for the Arts. They just awarded the Playhouse a $10,000 Arts Projects grant. It supports “Ain’t Misbehavin,” the musical planned for 2022.

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Nico Eisenberger writes: “I just witnessed an unbelievable spectacle. Three bald eagles went up against 3 ospreys in a full-on battle for the skies … all right above the new osprey nest on the way to Burying Hill.

“They screeched, swerved, swooped, dove, teamed, ganged, isolated, regrouped and went at it again and again. My measly iPhone photo [below] doesn’t do it justice. It was jaw-dropping.

“I caught a hint of this growing local rivalry a few times over the past few days, but nothing like the epic battle now.

“I am sure there will be more. Fingers crossed for all involved, especially our new nesting pair. So far, it seems they have been able to defend themselves nicely.”

Nico copied Patrick Comins, executive director of the Connecticut Audubon Society. He replied:

“This is something we will see more and more of, especially with the overlapping hunting territories of the nesting eagle pair and many ospreys. Bald eagles regularly harass osprey, steal their prey, and occasionally kill or injure ospreys in the process.

“But both species treat each other with some degree of respect, because each can cause damage to the other.”

(Photo/Nico Eisenberger)

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Now there are 3.

Easton has joined the Westport Weston Health District.

Which means it needs a new name. Suggestions (beyond “Westport Weston Easton Health District,” I guess) are welcome. Email publichealth@wwhd.org.

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The only thing better than al fresco dining may be doing it with the best local bounty. Oh, yeah … with chef Alison Milwe Grace in charge.

The popular caterer works her magic at Wakeman Town Farm on June 12 (6 to 9 p.m.). The menu for the WTF fundraiser (for educational programs) includes chilled spring pea and basil soup, spring vegetables, spring lamb chops with mint chimichurri or herb-dusted salmon over asparagus, with lemon-thyme berry trifles. BYOB adult beverages.

Guests can stroll the grounds and gardens, visit the animals, and enjoy acoustic music.

Click here for tickets, and more information.

Alison Milwe Grace, at Wakeman Town Farm.

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And finally … there was no Billboard Hot 100 on May 14, 1920 (the day, noted above, that F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald signed their Westport lease). It started August 4, 1958.

However, there are records kept of the top records of 1920. The most popular song that year was Al Jolson’s “Swanee.” “How I love ya, how I love ya …”

The rest of the top songs include a few folks I’ve heard of (Paul Whiteman, Eddie Cantor, Jascha Heifetz, Sergei Rachmaninoff). But 2 titles caught my eye, for different reasons.

There was this topical tune, “Prohibition Blues” …

… and this one: “My Little Bimbo Down on the Bamboo Isle.” It would never fly today, 101 years later:

Roundup: Friday – P&Z, CBD, Kelp …

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Last night, the Planning & Zoning Commission approved new regulations regarding accessory apartments (units in a principal dwelling) and “accessory dwelling units” (those in attached structures).

As “06880” reported earlier this month, the new rules will open up our housing stock. They could add a small number of affordable housing units, and provide added income for residents going through life changes — the loss of a job, say, or divorce, or those whose children have moved away and who want to move into a smaller place on their own property, while renting out their larger home.

Also last night, Neil Cohn moved from alternate to full member of the P&Z, He replaces Greg Rutstein, who resigned Wednesday due to increased business responsibilities in a new job. Both are Democrats.

Rutstein praised chair Danielle Dobin, his fellow commissioners and Planning & Zoning Department head Mary Young. Noting that the board faces many important decisions, he said, “I want to make sure that I allow others who have the time to carefully consider these issues to serve the town that I love so dearly.”  

Dobin said, “In 3 short years, Greg has had a meaningful impact on Westport. He worked tirelessly to make the P&Z more efficient — cutting through red tape, and saving residents and businesses time and fees. His insightful questions, positive energy and good humor will be deeply missed by all of us.

“We warmly welcome Neil Cohn, one of our longstanding alternate commissioners in Greg’s place. Through his work chairing the Economic Growth Subcommittee, which he founded, Neil is playing an integral part in ensuring P&Z regulations promote a vibrant Westport.”

Neil Cohn

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Westport men and women can shop for CBD at 2 downtown stores literally around the corner from each other.

But what about man’s best friend?

We got that too.

Local resident Joseph Sequenzia just launched an all-natural hemp-derived  CBD dog treat. YUP PUP is part of a growing interest in pet wellness. The CEO says that dogs experience anxiety relief from CBD — a chemical compound in cannabis — along with health benefits like joint pain, digestion and healthy coats.

His mission is to “treat our pets to the same health and happiness they treat us to,” Sequenzia says. YUP PUP comes in Tasty Bacon Treats, Peanut Butter Bites and Savory Salmon Snacks. For more information, click here.

Joseph Sequenzia and his family — including dogs Wally and Otto.

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Yesterday was Earth Day. But New England Kelp Harvest Week runs all the way through Sunday.

Local restaurants and shops from Greenwich to Westerly, Rhode Island are participating in the first-ever event celebrating our region’s most sustainable crop: sugar kelp.

Kelp requires no fertilizers or fresh water to grow, and absorbs carbon trapped in the sea. Westporters can support local farms and restaurants, and fight climate change — all in one meal.

Food and beverages featuring kelp are available at The Whelk, Kawa Ni, OKO, Don Memo and The Cottage. To experiment in your own kitchen, buy local dried kelp at Fjord Fish Market.

The festival’s Instagram account offers food and beverage ideas, and information about kelp. Click here for a list of all participating restaurants, breweries, cafes and shops. Click here for links to virtual events. (Hat tip: Craig D.B. Patton)

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Ospreys love Westport. But for years, the platform to the right of the Burying Hill Beach entrance road has been vacant. It’s been speculated that it is too low for ospreys’ tastes.

But at least one pair thinks it’s fine. The platform in the New Creek saltmarsh was busy yesterday, with new occupants building their nest.

Perhaps — like other newcomers to town — they realized that in a tight real estate market, sometimes you have to grab whatever property is available.

(Photo/Chris Swan)

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For decades, Walter and Naiad Einsel painted in their Victorian farmhouse, across from Greens Farms Elementary School. Two of Westport’s most noted artists, they documented their nearly 5-decade romance with clever “Art from the Heart” valentines.

Long ago, in 1947 — 6 years before they married – Walter painted Naiad’s portrait.

Bob and Karen Weingarten bought the painting in 2016. It hung in their Greens Farms home. Now they’ve donated it to the Westport Public Art Collections.

WestPAC works hang all over town. Perhaps this one is destined for Greens Farms El.

Naiad Einsel, painted by Walter Einsel (1947)

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Westport resident Anne Boberski recently completed a video project for the Housatonic Museum of Art.

Available online, “See, Think, Wonder: Bridgeport” includes four 25-minute video episodes and a printable Teacher Toolkit. It’s designed to support curriculum in grades 5-8. Students examine maps, seals, artifacts and architecture, meet community leaders, and learn that history is local.

The art museum is on the Housatonic Community College campus. But anyone can click here to see “See, Think, Wonder: Bridgeport.”

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And finally …  today in 1985, Coca-Cola changed its formula. The reaction to New Coke was swift, strong, and overwhelmingly negative. The original formula returned less than 3 months later.

 

 

Roundup: Real Estate, Rabbis’ Honors, Raptors …

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Westport’s real estate market roars along.

Roe Colletti reports there were 115 house closings in the first quarter of 2021, a 47% increase from 2020 — and the highest number of houses sold in that quarter since at least 2000.

The average closing price rose 33% to $1.84 million, the quarter’s highest since 2000. Homes sold on average for 99.7% of the list price.

There were 87 houses pending (signed contracts) on March 31, up 81% from last year. The average list price of those homes was $2.2 million.

Housing inventory on March 31 was 135  — down 47.3% from the previous March 31, when there were 256 houses on the market. (Hat tip: Chuck Greenlee)

This 12-bedroom, 15 1/2-bathroom estate, set on 7 1/2 acres, is listed for $20 million. (Photo courtesy of KMS Partners @ Compass)

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This year’s New York Board of Rabbis’ Humanitarian Awards will honor first responders and essential workers.

Dr. Anthony Fauci will be feted. So will the Greater New York Hospital Association.

And … Westport’s own Avi Kaner.

The co-owner of Morton Williams Supermarkets (and former Board of Finance chair and 2nd selectman) will be cited for the work his family-owned business did during the pandemic.

Morton Williams stores never closed. Employees kept working; senior executives ensured that the supply chain continued.

The company became a lifeline to New York. They worked with the CDC to adjust trucking regulations so that truckers would be comfortable making deliveries. They were among the first in the nation to set aside special hours for seniors and immunocompromised customers; they lobbied aggressively for mask use, and ensured that supermarket workers were included in phase 1B of the state’s vaccinations.

There’s one more Westport connection to the May 10 event: Rabbi Jeremy Wiederhorn of The Conservative Synagogue is president of the New York Board of Rabbis.

Avi Kaner in a Bronx Morton Williams store. (Photo/Danny Ghitis for the New York Times)

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Business Networking International does exactly what its name says.

But there’s a twist: Only one person per profession is allowed to join a chapter. For example, there is one CPA, one architect, one insurance agent.

BNI’s Westport chapter is strong and active. They’ve got 48 members. Last year, they conducted nearly $2 million in business.

There are openings now in a few categories: interior designer, home inspector, developer, heating and air conditioning contractor, fitness club or personal trainer, chef, and attorneys who practice estate and elder law.

Weekly BNI meetings are now held over Zoom. They’ll transition to a hybrid or in-person format this summer or fall. Click here for information, or email info@salonpaulmichael.com.

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Today’s osprey update:

Carolyn Doan reports that the Fresh Market ospreys had a busy week rebuilding and freshening up their nest.

Sometimes when they’re not at home, Carolyn and her son head over to Gray’s Creek. Those birds are usually eating. “The male’s chest is more white, while the female has tan markings,” she says. She took this photo of one finishing a fish.

(Photo/Carolyn Doan)

Meanwhile, a group of Y’s Men strolled past this osprey at Longshore:

(Photo/Molly Alger)

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Five Wreckers are Staples High School’s Students of the Month.

Senior Henrik Hovstadius, junior Bruno Guiduli, sophomores Leo Fielding and Ari Lerner, and freshman Domenic Petrosinelli were nominated by their teachers.

Principal Stafford Thomas called the honorees “the glue of the Staples community: the type of kind, cheerful, hard-working, trustworthy students who keep the high school together, making it the special place that is.

Staples High School students of the month (from left): Henrik Hovstadius, Domenic Petrosinelli and Ari Lerner. Missing: Bruno Guiduli and Leo Fielding.

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The 2021 Music at MoCA Concert Series features a diverse range of jazz, pop and classical outdoor concerts, from April through October. Highlights include performers from the Jazz at Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Spotlight series.

Multi-instrumentalist and soulful pop artist Matt Nakoa opens the series on Friday, April 30 (7 p.m). Click here for the full schedule, and tickets.

Season passes are available for all 13 concerts, along with jazz, pop or classical packages and individual concert tickets. MoCA members receive discounts. Food and drinks are available at each event.

Matt Nakoa

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And finally … so who is Matt Nakoa (the first MoCA concert performer this year — see above). Watch below:

 

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.