Tag Archives: Puppies of Westport

Roundup: VFW, Nemo, LCDS …

 

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VFW Joseph J. Clinton Post 399 is one of Westport’s underappreciated, often-overlooked gems.

In addition to providing a home and community for veterans, the building at the Saugatuck Avenue/Riverside Avenue merge offers a restaurant and bar — and a state Veteran’s Service Office, assisting with disability support.

Thanks to 4th Row Films — Westporter Doug Tirola’s great documentary film company — you can learn all about the 100-year-od Westport VFW post, from members themselves. Click the link below; the password is “4throw” (without the quotation marks).

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Weather postponed 2 Remarkable Theater showings last week. So get ready this week for …

“Finding Nemo” (tonight, Monday, June 7) and “Rocky Horror Picture Show” (Saturday, June 12). Gates open at 7:30 p.m.; the “curtain” goes up at 8:30.

Click here for tickets and more information. Enjoy the show!

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A reader writes:

“We are a family of 4, with 3 dogs. When one was hit by a car, we wanted to find another. We ended up at Puppies of Westport (although we said we wouldn’t ever go to a ‘puppy mill’). Lauren Meren, the owner, was very kind. We had health issues with our dog, and she immediately reimbursed us for the hospital stay.

“y vet told me that Lauren recently died. Her children are trying to find homes for all of the dogs in the store. Please highlight this story, so the dogs end up in a loving home instead of a fate much different.”

There has been no answer to phone calls. If “06880” readers have any idea of the fate of the dogs — or how to help — click “Comments” below.

Puppies of Westport –

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For years, an unattractive concrete tower marred the playground and baseball field behind the Learning Community Day School (formerly Hillspoint Elementary).

Before …

Now — thanks to art teacher Lauren Beusse, her colleagues and (especially) the talented kids, it’s been  transformed beautifully.

Lauren was inspired by Tyree Guyton, a Detroit artist who creates large installations out of dilapidated properties and recycled materials.

Children worked on 6 individual panels, exploring colors and adding their own touches. LCDS says: “the flowers reaching for the sun, and birds and insects flying above, will always remind us of the way young children grow, bloom and take flight during their time here.”

… and after.

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Today’s “Westport … Naturally” photo from Lou Weinberg. In addition to overseeing our fantastic Community Garden next to Long Lots Elementary School, he’s a brilliant nature photographer.

Lou says: “The cedar waxwings are tossing them back at the old serviceberry tree. Robins are getting their fill as well. Serviceberry trees are native, and have very high wildlife value.

(Photo/Lou Weinberg)

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Voices Café — the Unitarian Church’s music series — premieres its livestream season on June 19 (8 p.m.). Featured performers are Goodnight Moonshine with Molly Venter (of Red Molly), and Eben Pariser, who also performs with Roosevelt Dime.

For nearly a decade, Voices Café has supported social justice programs. Recognizing the historical significance of this year’s concert date — Juneteenth — proceeds from the performance will benefit the Mary and Eliza Freeman Center for History and Community in Bridgeport. Click here for tickets, and more information.

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And finally … in the hopes of finding homes for all the Puppies of Westport (see story above) …

 

Puppies Update

Puppies of Westport has moved.

The new location is 255 Westport Avenue, Norwalk.  It’s just a short frisbee toss up US 1 from the previous location — 425 Post Road West, Westport — and despite changing towns, they’ll keep “Westport” in their name.

No word on whether the regular protests — alleging the animals are bred in “puppy mills” — will continue.

Protests last year outside of Puppies of Westport.

Puppy Protests

Puppy mill protest again Puppies of Westport

For 2 years, a small group of protesters has nipped at the heels of Puppies of Westport.

Standing scrupulously on the sidewalk — the store, opposite Whole Foods on the Norwalk line, won’t allow them on the grass — the group calls attention to the pets being sold a few feet away.  The humans say the animals are bred in despicable conditions, in what are called “puppy mills.”

Karen Rasmussen, a Staples grad, researches the breeders through state and federal Agriculture Department files.  Puppies of Westport, she says, uses “one of the worst breeders in the country,” in Oklahoma.

One sign urges motorists to honk in support.  They hear a steady stream of horns.  “We only get a few fingers,” Karen says.  Oprah and the Animal Planet have raised awareness of puppy mills, she notes.

“People are making the connection that puppies don’t get here on clouds,” Karen adds.  “They’re delivered in huge 18-wheelers, like vegetables.”

Over the crest of a small hill, Puppies of Westport sports a “Puppy Mills” sign — with the familiar red slash.

Puppies of Westport -- with the "No Puppy Mills" sign"

Puppies of Westport -- with the "No Puppy Mills" sign"

Owner Lauren Meren takes issue with the protesters — “activists, like PETA,” she calls them.

“All our breeders are licensed by the government,” she says.

“There really isn’t a definition of a puppy mill,” Lauren continues.  “My breeders are diligent about how they’re treated.  They breed only until they’re 4 or 5 years old; then they’re given away.”

She pauses.  “I love dogs more than I love people.”

What do her customers say?

“A lot of them want to kill those protesters,” she replies.  “They’re just trying to destroy a family business that’s trying to make it.”

Outside, the protesters stand their ground.  They hold their signs high.  Drivers honk.