Tag Archives: Talking Heads

Roundup: Yankee Doodle Fair, All-Americans, River Cleanup …

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Big news from the Westport Woman’s Club: They held their first monthly luncheon in over a year.

Bigger news: The Yankee Doodle Fair is back!

The century-old event — Westport’s traditional last week of school/beginning of summer carnival — was canceled last year and this, due to COVID.

But the WWC has arranged for all the rides, games and cotton candy vendors to come this fall. The 2021 Yankee Doodle Fair is set for September 23 to 26.

As usual, all profits go toward grants and scholarships. It’s a great fundraiser, by an amazing group.

This fall’s Yankee Doodle Fair will be a great way to ring in the new school year. To raise money for those in need. And of course, to try to win one of those very elusive stuffed animals.

The Yankee Doodle Fair takes over the Imperial Avenue parking lot. (Photo/Lee Scharfstein)

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Westport Paddle Club’s first-ever Saugatuck River cleanup yesterday was trashy.

The Riverside Avenue rental and lesson facility supplied dozens of people with kayaks. They headed upstream, collecting trash along the way.

A thunderstorm sent them back to shore before everyone was done. Still, they filled barrels with “stuff.” Some of it was brush; much of it was man-made (and man-tossed).

Jr’s Deli fed the crowd. Rain cut short the reggae band. But the most important work was done.

And next year, it will have to be done all over again.

A small sampling of the large amount of trash collected from the Saugatuck River.

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Most high school sports teams are lucky to have one All-American, every decade or so.

Before this year, Staples boys lacrosse had 5 since 2010.

This spring, they added 3 more.

Congratulations to the Wreckers’ newest All-American athletes: recent graduate JP Kosakowski, and rising seniors Henry Dodge and Charlie Howard!

 

(From left) Henry Dodge, Charlie Howard, JP Kosakowski (Photos/Shelley Burger)

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Summer is here! Well, it arrives at 11:32 p.m. tonight, anyway.

To celebrate, the Minute Man donned a beach-type necklace.

(Photo/Matt Murray)

PS: I’m sure that, as usual, a commenter will write in about this “desecration” of our town’s monument.

Ever since 1910, our Minute Man has been decorated. He’s worn Santa caps and Easter bunny years. He’s had flags draped over his shoulders, and flowers stuck in his musket.

Without going all First Amendment here, he fought for the right to be free. I think he would be pleased.

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Tomorrow is worldwide “Make Music Day.” There are more than 1,000 events, in over 120 countries.

Unfortunately, there is no specific Westport celebration. But residents Louis Fuertes and Pat Blaufuss — members of the 4-person band Picnic on the 4th of July — will perform at Old Post Tavern in Fairfield (7 to 8 p.m.).

The CUkes — a ukulele group that originated at the Westport Weston Family YMCA — entertain in the Nordstrom Courtyard of The SoNo Collection mall (Norwalk, 6 p.m.).

And Talking Heads members Chris Frantz and Tina Weymouth — who live just over the line in Fairfield — are part of an international “This Moment in Time” musical event. Click here for details.

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Today’s “Westport … Naturally” feature finds a pair of egrets enjoying Compo Beach.

(Photo/Stephen Raffel)

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And finally … in honor of international “Make Music Day”:

Roundup: Board of Ed, Calico, Chris Frantz, More

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Highlights from last night’s Board of Education meeting:

  • The 2021-22 budget of $126,942,298 passed. Among other cuts, Staples High School will lose 2 teachers and 2 paraprofessionals. Not cut, however, are 4 Staples grade level assistants and 4 elementary school world language teachers. Also defeated: a proposal to implement “pay to play” for Staples sports. Next step for the budget: the Board of Finance.
  • Staples is planning for 75% of students to return to full-time learning in March. Details will be announced soon.
  • Dr. Mary Lou DiBella has resigned as principal of Kings Highway Elementary School, effective at the end of the school year.

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For years, Calico’s Post Road store near Stop & Shop has been a favorite destination for fabrics, window treatments, shades, wallpaper, furniture, bedding, pillows and cushions.

It’s still a great spot. But now it’s closer to downtown. The new Calico is in the old State Cleaners space, at the Post Road/Imperial Avenue corner.

There’s plenty of room, now that all the dry cleaning racks are gone.

The new store is a way for Calico — part of a 70-store national chain — to show off its decorating chops.

COVID has been tough on many businesses. But with families spending more time indoors, interior design stores have been busier than ever.

Click here to learn more about Calico.

Calico’s new digs, at 224 Post Road East. (Photo/Dan Woog)

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This is a big year for Chris Frantz.

The almost-Westport resident (other side of Sturges Highway) — and drummer for Talking Heads and Tom Tom Club — will be honored with a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. (He’s already in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.)

Plus, he’ll curate a virtual concert at the Westport Library.

That may sound pretty local, compared to the Grammys. But the March 13 event (7 p.m.) is virtual, meaning anyone anywhere in the world can watch.

It will be quite a show. Frantz has assembled an all-star lineup:

  • Deep Banana Blackout, the soul/funk band with full horn section
  • Mystic Bowie’s Talking Dreads, who mix roots reggae, ska and lover’s rock
  • Plastic Ivy aka Lira Marie Landes, Philadelphia multi-instrumentalist
  • Xeno & Oaklander, an electronic group
  • The Zambonis, an indie-rock band that writes songs exclusive about ice hockey (!)
  • Sadie Dupuis, poet
  • Du-Rites/Lulu Lewis, New York City husband-and-wife rock band.

The concert — which benefits Neighborhood Studios of Fairfield County, the art, music, theater and dance non-profit for underserved  Bridgeport students — will be livestreamed form the Library’s state-of-the-art Verso Studios. It’s co-sponsored by the Westport Weston Chamber of Commerce.

The March 13 date is significant. That’s almost one year to the day that Westport went into a sudden COVID lockdown (hence the name: “Lockdown Music Festival”).

The goal of the concert is to celebrate “optimism, resilience and the power of music.” Tickets are $25. Click here to register.

Yesterday: Chris Frantz and his wife, Talking Heads bassist Tina Weymouth …

… and today.

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On Saturday, Sean Gallagher completed a solo marathon around Central Park’s outer loop — over 4 full laps.

His time was 3 hours and 47 minutes.

Not real good for a former soccer and track star, Annapolis grad and Marine infantry officer.

Except … the 2011 Staples High School alum did it while carrying a 35-pound Marine Corps “ruck” (backpack).

“Rucks teach Marines how to handle adversity with grit and determination — the same qualities necessary for small businesses to survive,” Gallagher says.

Gallagher mentions small businesses for a reason. The purpose of his marathon run was to raise money for small businesses impacted by COVID.

When Sean Gallagher sets a goal, he accomplishes it. He said he was going to run 26.2 miles wearing a 35-pound ruck, and he did.

Ane he said he would raise $20,000. Yesterday’s total: $20,712.

Sean Gallagher, mid-marathon.

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There’s a Westport connection to everything.

Including — or “especially”? — the Puppy Bowl.

As you probably heard, Sunday’s 17th annual event ended in dramatic fashion. Trailing by 3 points with less than a minute left, Team Ruff rallied to defeat Team Fluff, 73-69.

The local poop?

(Former) resident Martha Stewart was host.

More excitingly, former Staples Players lighting designer Jeffrey Small served as production manager. He fills that role for many live events now, nationally.

Arf!

Jeffrey Small and friend, at Puppy Bowl XVII.

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There was another “bowl” on Sunday. Perhaps you heard of it: Super Bowl LV.

Staples High School class of 1986 grad Ted Marcus — now an Emmy-winning New York-based sound designer and audio engineer — created the sound design and audio for 2 pre-game promos.

“Polishing the Trophies and Plaques,” with the song “I Love Somebody” in the background, aired at 5 p.m.

The second was shown just before kickoff. It was narrated by Brad Pitt.

Ted Marcus

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And finally … the story about Chris Frantz (above) brought back memories of Talking Heads’ “Once in a Lifetime.” The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame named it one of the 500 songs that shaped rock.