Tag Archives: Westport Downtown Association

Roundup: Humane Society, Holiday Trees, “Christmas Carol” …

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Looks like the Connecticut Humane Society will be moving from its longtime Post Road digs, just east of Compo Shopping Center.

“Good Morning Wilton” reports that that town’s Planning & Zoning Commission approved an application for new headquarters at 863-875 Danbury Road (Route 7).

Specifically, the Wilton P&Z’s unanimous votes permit a charitable organization to operate on residentially zoned property.

Humane Society executive director James Bias called it “a big night for pets and people of Connecticut. We are thrilled that the application for CHS’ new animal resource center in Wilton has been approved, and very thankful to the town of Wilton. We are also so grateful for the supporters who believe in creating this new safe haven for pets in need and are with us every step of the way.

“This is a moment to celebrate, but of course, there is a lot more work to be done to bring this project to reality. We are excited to get started on the next steps.”

(Click here for the full story. Hat tip: Sal Liccione)

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They’re lit!

The Westport Downtown Association’s 12 holiday trees — each decorated professionally, and themed to a different non-profit — will delight shoppers from now through New Year’s.

The organizations include Filling in the Blanks, Wakeman Town Farm, Westport Young Woman’s League, Westport Fire Department, Homes with Hope, Christ & Holy Trinity Church, Aware, CLASP Homes, Westport PAL, Westport Bookstore, and MoCA Westport.

This tree — one of a dozen, courtesy of the Westport Downtown Association — is at the corner of Church Lane and Elm Street.

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It’s a Westport Country Playhouse Christmas!

“A Merry Little Christmas Carol” — based (of course) on Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” — will be performed live on Monday, December 13 (7 p.m.). It’s available too for on-demand streaming, from December 16 through 19.

Part ghost story, part celebration, the show based on the classic novel with Ebenezer Scrooge, Tiny Tim and the Spirits of Christmas Past, Present and Future is the newest offering from WCP’s Script in Hand play-reading series, and Playhouse Radio Theater.

Click here for tickets and more information.

Bah humbug!

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Yesterday’s Roundup gave an incorrect date for the Westport Farmers’ Market’s Holiday Artist Market. It’s this Saturday (December 4), from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Gilbertie’s Herbs & Garden Center.

The Artist Market takes place in 3 open-air greenhouses, and features a wide array of one-of-a-kind handcrafted gift ideas. Food trucks will be on hand too.

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Today’s “Westport … Naturally” photo shows the late-November view from Giina Ryan’s home office window.

She says,  “In a few days, after the leaves drop, we will see the loading docks on the back side of Stop & Shop for the winter.”

(Photo/Gina Ryan)

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And finally … Singer/producer/composer/actor Lou Rawls was born today in 1933. He died in 2006, age 72.

 

Roundup: Downtown Trees, Staples Girls Soccer State Champs, Joggers Club …

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Downtown is all about holiday shopping.

But it’s about helping others too.

This season, the Westport Downtown Association will install a dozen beautiful, colorful trees throughout the area.

Each will be decorated by professional designers. Each will also be themed to a different local non-profit.

The organizations include Filling in the Blanks, Wakeman Town Farm, Westport Young Woman’s League, Westport Fire Department, Homes with Hope, Christ & Holy Trinity Church, Aware, CLASP Homes, Westport PAL, Westport Bookstore, and MoCA Westport.

The WDA asks residents to help fund trees, lights and decorations. Click here to donate via GoFundMe.

PS: Dartmouth College’s Brovertones will sing on Sunday, December 5 (6:30 p.m., Christ & Holy Trinity Church courtyard).

A downtown Christmas tree (last year).

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Staples’ girls soccer team has done it again!

Two weeks after winning the FCIAC championship, they earned a co-state championship. The Wreckers and Wilton battled through 80 minutes of excellent soccer, and 30 more of overtime, before both were declared Connecticut LL (extra large schools) winners.

The defensive battle was a worthy final, between teams that knew each other well. Staples shut out the Warriors 1-0 for the league crown, after beating them by the same score in the regular season.

Congratulations to coach Barry Beattie and his staff, and a wonderful group of talented, tenacious athletes!

Staples celebrates after last week’s state semifinal win. (Photo/JC Martin)

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Staples is not coach Barry Beattie’s only championship team this fall. His Westport Soccer Association U-15 Blue squad also tied for their league title. Congratulations (again) to him, and of course to his players!

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Speaking (still) of sports: The Joggers Club hosts its first-ever Turkey Burn on Saturday (November 27, 8 a.m., Compo Beach).

On tap: 5K, 10K and 15K runs, along with hot coffee, treats, and finish line music. “Celebrate the holidays with your most festive running outfit,” they say.

Regular Compo Beach runs are Saturdays at 8 a.m., and Wednesday nights at the Staples High School track (6:15 p.m.).

Click here for more information, or follow on Instagram: @TheJoggersClub.ct.

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Staples Players is back!

“Grease” — their first full mainstage musical since the pandemic — played to 2 weeks of sold-out audiences. Choreography, music, sets, lighting — all were up to the award-winning high school troupe’s always high standards.

Congratulations to directors David Roth and Kerry Long, the cast and crew. Stay tuned for news about the spring show!

Ryan Porio leads a show-stopping “Greased Lightning.” (Photo/Kerry Long)

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Greens Farms is filled with “Westport … Naturally” photo opportunities. Here’s Ron Henkin’s submission.

(Photo/Ron Henkin)

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And finally … we have a two-fer for today in history. On this date in 1877, Thomas Edison announced his invention of the phonograph …

… while — somewhat related — on this day in 1959, disc jockey Alan Freed  — who helped popularize the term “rock ‘n’ roll” — was fired from WABC radio in New York. He was alleged to have been part of the payola scandal.

 

Halloween Parade Postponed To Tomorrow

Hold those costumes! Stay hungry!

Westport’s annual downtown Children’s Halloween Parade has been postponed from today until tomorrow (Thursday, October 28).

Children and parents will meet at Main Street and Post Road East at 3:30 p.m. tomorrow.

The parade will proceed up Main Street, turn right onto Avery Place, then turn left on Myrtle Ave to Town Hall and Veterans Green. Children may trick-or-treat along Main Street and outside Town Hall.  Entertainment, refreshments and a small gift will be provided on Veterans Green at 4 p.m.

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

Trick or treat on Main Street.

Roundup: Halloween, Holiday Trees, Movies …

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Once upon a time, trick-or-treaters (yes, there was a “trick” part besides the “treat”) soaped up windows.

Now they paint them.

The Westport Weston Chamber of Commerce’s annual Halloween Window Painting Contest takes place this Saturday (October 23, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.).

A record number of kids (105) will paint 65 different windows, all around town. They’re vying to win in 3 categories (Scariest, Most Original, and Best Halloween Themed) in 3 divisions (Elementary, Middle and High School). Victors earn rewards, and $25 gift cards from Cold Fusion.

Windows of retailers, offices, the Library and Senior Center answered the call, ensuring that every child who signed up has a window to paint. They’ll work on their own or in teams.

Windows will remain painted through Halloween, so residents can enjoy the artistry. For more information,  click here.

Halloween painting, 2013.

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Also downtown: The Westport Downtown Association hopes Westporters can help them make this holiday season special. They’re installing a dozen colorful tees throughout the area. Each will be decorated by professional designers, and will be themed to a different local non-profit. The aim is to support their missions during the season of giving.

The WDA seeks donations to help cover the cost of the trees, lights and decorations. Click here for the GoFundMe page, to help reach the $10,000 goal.

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Usually, the only tents at Sherwood Island are on the sand.

Yesterday, visitors saw a ginormous tent, in the parking area. There were a couple dozen tractor-trailer dressing and production rooms too.

It was part of a movie being filmed there. Donald Sutherland and Jaeden Martell star in “Mr. Harrigan’s Phone,” an adaptation of a Stephen King short story.

Despite all the activity, no one spotted the main actors.

(Photo and hat tip: Werner Liepolt)

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Speaking of cinema: The Remarkable Theater ends its second remarkable drive-in season with films that celebrate Halloween and Election Day (plus one classic music movie).

  • “Pink Floyd: The Wall” (Saturday, October 23, 6:30 p.m.)
  • “Hotel Transylvania” (Sunday, October 24, 6 p.m.)
  • “Corpse Bride” (Monday, October 25, 6:30 p.m.)
  • “The Candidate” (Tuesday, October 26, 6:30 p.m.)
  • “Beetlejuice” (Friday, October 29, 6:30 p.m.)
  • “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” (Saturday, October 30, 8:30 p.m.).

Click here for tickets and more information.

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Speaking still of movies: After a great opening night, the Westport Library’s Short Cuts Film Festival continues Thursday, November 4 (7 p.m.), with 5 short films curated from the 2021 Tribeca Film Festival. The lineup includes narrative and animated films.

Six Nights follows a restaurant dishwasher facing a dilemma; in The Angler, things are not always what they seem; a baby owl struggles in the animated Try to Fly; challenges face a Syrian immigrant in No Longer Suitable for Use; and 3 young children seek a boyfriend for their bus driver in Cupids.

Cupid director and humanitarian aid worker Zoey Martinson will be an in-person guest in the Forum for a discussion after the screenings. At-home viewers can access the talkback via Zoom, and ask questions as well.

An all-documentary program follows on November 18.

All films will be screened on the Forum’s large, hi-def screen.

To buy tickets for November 4, click here. For November 18, click here.

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Coming soon at Wakeman Town Farm:

“Bicycling with Butterflies” (November 1, 6:30 p.m., Zoom). On behalf of Westport’s Pollinator Pathway, and in honor of Mexico’s Dia de los Muertos — the day the monarchs traditionally return to their winter sanctuary in Michoacán — Sara Dykman talks about her solo experience biking the 10,000-mile Monarch Butterfly Migration  . Click here for more information.

“Don’t Blow It! A Panel Discussion About Leaf Blowers” (November 8, 7 p.m., Wakeman Town Farm). Clear the air about the impact of gas leaf blowers on our bodies and the environment – including the gas leaf blower ordinance being presented to the RTM Click here for more information.

“Holiday Wreath Making” (November 15, 6:30 p.m., Wakeman Town Farm). Chyrse Terill and Ellen Goldman will show how to create wonderful Thanksgiving wreaths, with materials collected from WTF. At the end of the class, take home your work. Click here for more information.

Monarch butterfly in Westport. (Photo/Tammy Barry)

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Compo Cove was frothy yesterday.

“Wash day?” wonders Les Dinkin.

(Photo/Les Dinkin)

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Today’s “Westport … Naturally” photo combines a special local custom (dogs at the beach) with an iconic site (Compo cannons). The result:

(Photo/Cathy Malkin)

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And finally … on this date in 1934, FBI agents in East Liverpool, Ohio shot and killed Pretty Boy Floyd.

Woody Guthrie noted the generous side of the notorious Depression-era bank robber:

Yes, as through this world I’ve wandered
I’ve seen lots of funny men;
Some will rob you with a six-gun,
And some with a fountain pen.

And as through your life you travel,
Yes, as through your life you roam,
You won’t never see an outlaw
Drive a family from their home.

Roundup: Shiloh Verrico, Vinny Penna, Parking And Driving …

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This weekend’s Italian American Police Society’s Car Show was special.

And not because over 300 classic, modified, foreign and racing cars competed for trophies. Or because their owners and friends feasted on barbecue, shared $5,000 in raffle prizes, and enjoyed perfect summer weather.

There was also a tribute to Vincent Penna Jr. The former Westport Police Department deputy chief died a week before Christmas, of a heart attack. He was 51 years old.

Westport Police detectives Sereniti Taranto and Sharon Russo, with officers from nearby towns, raised over $10,000 for the Vincent Penna Jr. Scholarship Fund.

Penna’s family — including his wife Denise, and sons Vincent and Nicholas — picked the most prestigious award at the car show: a 1932 yellow Ford coupe, just like John Milner’s from “American Graffiti.”

The car show connection continues. Among his many activities, Penna served with the Westport Police Benevolent Association. They’ve got their own car show this Saturday (August 21, 4 to 8 p.m., Saugatuck train station). (Hat tip: Andrew Colabella)

The Penna family, at yesterday’s Norwalk car show. (Photo/Andrew Colabella)

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Among the highlights of the weekend’s final Shopping Day of the summer: The voice of Shiloh Verrico

The 11-year-old actor/singer from New Jersey — a co-star on Netflix’s “Country Comfort” with recent Staples High School graduate Jamie Mann, who also performed — wowed the crowd,

“She literally stopped everyone in their tracks,” says Julie Van Norden. “You could have heard a pin drop when she sang ‘Sound of Silence.’ I’ve never heard such a voice in one so young, at least not in person!”

Shiloh is  a student at 1983 Staples grad Cynthia Gibb’s Triple Threat Academy, for young actors, singers and dancers.

When she hits it big — well, bigger — you can say you heard her here first.

Shiloh Verrico

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One other great moment from the weekend: Dan Levinson’s Palomar Jazz Band, at the Levitt Pavilion.

Another large crowd filled the lawn, as the sun set and music played. After COVID forced a dark summer in 2020, this year’s 60 evenings of free music have been a welcome relief.

Dan Levinson’s Palomar Jazz Band …

… and their fans. (Photos/JC Martin)

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Kids watch their parents. They mimic them — the good, and the bad.

Want evidence that the next generation will grow up to be entitled drivers and parkers, just like their elders? Just look at this photo yesterday, from Church Lane:

(Photo/John McCarthy)

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On a more serious note, kids do watch how their parents drive.

For the past few days, parents dropping off and picking up their children at Wakeman Fields have been driving very, very fast.

The newly paved road linking Cross Highway and the Bedford Middle School parking lot has turned into a Grand Prix straightaway.

With the addition of curbs on both sides, it’s narrower than ever. It’s even tougher now to back up and turn around. Traffic roars by in both directions, while kids cross without looking.

Be careful. Slow down. Please show your children — and all the others — how to drive safely.

The Cross Highway entrance to Wakeman Fields. (Photo/Dan Woog)

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What an end to a great weekend! If anyone wonders why we love Westport, just show them last night’s sunset over Sherwood Mill Pond:

(Photo/Matt Murray)

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Sure, it’s been a hot few days. Time for cool off — “Westport … Naturally” style.

(Photo/Varyk Kutnick)

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And finally … back in 1969, today marked the last day of Woodstock.

There were some legendary performances. Also some really, really atrocious ones.

How to pick what to feature today?

How about some artists who — before or after going down to Yasgur’s farm — performed in Westport.

Richie Havens was in Westport several times. The first was when he took the Staples High School stage as a stand-in for the Blues Project, who were stuck in a New York recording studio.

He was flexible at Woodstock too, improvising “Freedom” on the spot after playing every song he knew, while most of the other first-day acts were stuck in a massive traffic jam.

Sly & the Family Stone played at least twice in Westport — once at Staples, once at Longshore. This is one of the enduring images from Woodstock:

Arlo Guthrie played at the Westport Country Playhouse:

And how about these Woodstock performers who — at some point in their lives — lived (or, in once case still live) in Westport?

Joe Cocker rented here — and auditioned musicians for his “Mad Dogs & Englishmen” tour at the Westport Country Playhouse.

Johnny Winter lived here around the same time. He’d hold court — and play — at Players’ Tavern, next to the Playhouse (most recently, Positano restaurant).

And — though Bert Sommer never made it into the “Woodstock” movie — he performed at Woodstock too. He was accompanied by Ira Stone — now a longtime Westporter.

Roundup: Shopping, MoCA Bar, Chimneys …

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The Westport Downtown Association hosts its second (of 3) Summer Outdoor Shopping Days tomorrow (Saturday, July 17, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.).

This isn’t the traditional “sidewalk sale.” But word on the (Main) Street is that some stores will offer great deals anyway.

Main and Elm Streets will be closed. There will be a food truck, bar and live music all day long.

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Luisa Francoeur writes:

I am an avid supporter of Sustainable Westport and a participant in the Food Scrap Recycling Program. The organization needs our help today. Friday, July 16 is the last day to contribute to the Zero Food Waste Grant challenge.

The program’s goal is raising $7,500. Each dollar raised will be doubled. This will allow Sustainable Westport to do so much more for our community. Donors will be entered to win a giveaway from one of the sponsors.

Our Food Scrap Recycling is working to decrease residential food waste by at least 25%. Close to 1 out of 4 bags of groceries are eventually thrown away. Food waste is one of the heaviest, wettest and most expensive types of trash for the town to incinerate.

If food waste were a country, it would be the third largest emitter of greenhouse gases, behind China and the US.

Sustainable Westport has partnered with Earthplace and Wakeman Town Farm to transform Westport into a green community. The goal  is to become a Net Zero community by the year 2050, when the community has reduced its impacts across energy, water and waste so they are sustainably managed, using approaches that are economically viable, of social benefit, and environmentally responsible.”

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MoCA Westport is more than an art museum and educational center.

It’s now a full-service bar.

The Newtown Turnpike institution now serves custom cocktails, wine, beer and non-alcoholic beverages.

But what’s a bar without Happy Hour? Starting July 22, they’ll throw one every Thursday (5 to 7 p.m.). There’s a new signature cocktail each week — plus free admission to the exhibition.

The bar at MoCA Westport.

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Speaking of downtown and beverages … “cool beans” dates back to “Full House.”

But it’s both a great expression, and a great way of describing the offerings at one of Westport’s favorite coffee shops.

Plus, this is just a very cool shot.

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Fred Cantor is one of “06880”‘s most alert readers.

And one of the most curious.

He sends this photo …

… and writes:

“This is not the first time I have seen a chimney left standing in a Westport teardown.

“There must be an important reason for taking down everything but the chimney. Perhaps some of your readers know the answer.

“Is it because chimneys are more difficult to build these days (since it involves brickwork that would not otherwise be used in the construction of a new house)?

“Or does it represent some kind of loophole in local regs with respect to teardowns that enables builders to do something they wouldn’t otherwise be able to do if the chimney had been torn down?”

Perhaps there’s another explanation. If you have insights, click “Comments” below.

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As expected, I missed at least one Westport-connected Emmy nomination yesterday.

Staples High School 1974 graduate/former Player Sue Handman is up for her writing and narration on “Once Upon a City.” Good luck to all Westport nominees!

And while I noted that Staples High School Class of 1988 graduate Kerri Kenney-Silver is up for an award as Outstanding Actress in a Short Form Comedy or Drama Series for “Reno 911!”, she’s also nominated for an executive producer award for the same show. Kerri had 2 similar “Reno 911!” nominations in 2020.

Emmy Award

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John Porio grew up in the 1970s and ’80s with classic rock. He was pleased when his own kids — like himself, Staples High School students — got involved with the School of Rock.

Then he did too. He met some fellow musicians there, and did a couple of adult shows.

Now they’ve formed their own band. They’re having fun — and raising funds for Homes for the Brave. Since 2002, the Bridgeport organization has provided housing, vocational education and life skills training to over 1,200 veterans.

John’s band — Gold Dust — performed on Memorial Day weekend. On July 24 (4-9 p.m.), they’ve got a bigger gig. The venue is a group member’s property at 399 Center Street in Easton. There’s a barn, patio and big lawn — perfect for any rock show.

Gold Dust includes Westporters Jeffery and Laurie Gross, and Leila Jones Shields. They’ll perform after the School of Rock band. The public is invited.

Gold Dust

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This week’s Westport Garden Club #FridayFlowers arrangement has a special place in “06880”‘s heart: It was made for last night’s “blog party,” at Compo Beach.

And — if I do say so myself — the flowers that graced a picnic table last night was the most beautiful I’ve ever seen!

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A celebration of the life of David Tarqueno will be held this Saturday (July 17, 2 p.m., St. Luke Church). The Staples High School graduate — an avid fisherman and nature lover — died in December, from complications of COVID-19. He was 61.

David Tarqueno

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Paul Delano writes: “The bee balm flowers in my garden bloomed recently. They’re now are attracting hummingbirds.”

Indeed they are. But what’s as remarkable as this “Westport … Naturally” show of nature is that Paul could capture it so well. Hummingbirds are tough to photograph — they sure can fly!

(Photo/Paul Delano)

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And finally … the incomparable Darlene Love headlines tonight’s benefit show at the Levitt Pavilion. There’s a reason she’s on Rolling Stone’s list of 100 Greatest Singers. And in the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame.

 

Roundup: June Snow, Safety Fence, Downtown Lights …

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That old saying about New England weather — if you don’t like it, wait a minute — is spot on. Still, it doesn’t usually snow in June.

If you’re Netflix, you make it happen. For a couple of weeks, a crew has filmed “The Noel Diary” in a residential neighborhood. It’s a Christmas (as in 2022) movie, so a bit of ingenuity is needed.

Here was one scene, yesterday. I’m sure it will look more realistic 18 months from now.

On screen, and in real life.

(Photo/Molly Alger)

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Meanwhile, summer is actually almost here. That means more folks walking, jogging, biking and driving past the former Positano restaurant on Hillspoint Road.

For over a year, permit violations have halted construction on what was to be a private residence. The building — half-finished, swathed in blue, surrounded by weeds — has become a neighborhood eyesore.

A security fence now encloses the property. That makes it safer.

But now it looks worse than ever.

(Photo/Dinkin Fotografix)

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The Westport Downtown Association’s GoFundMe campaign was a success.

The organization has installed more lights along Church Lane — including the Patagonia and Urban Outfitters buildings.

Next on the lights list: Main Street.

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Jim Hood lives on Compo Beach. Is that where his dog learned to swim? Or does it just paddle instinctively? Who cares? Here’s today’s “Westport … Naturally” photo.

(Photo/Jim Hood)

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And finally … today is Flag Day. Long may she wave, proudly and brave!

 

Lighting Up Main Street

Lights! Action!

One follows the other. And if one group has its way, there will soon be more lights down.

With more action sure to follow.

The Westport Downtown Association’s newest project is “Light Up Main Street.” The idea is to continue the string lights — currently on Church Lane — all the way down Main Street.

Speaking of action: Josh Allen and Robert Cornield have offered to match up to $2,500 for any donations made.

Church Lane lights.

They’re parents who have each spent the last 12-plus years raising their families here, and supporting the community however they can.

From Coleytown, Greens Farms, Bedford and Staples schools, to Wakemen Town Farm, Little League baseball, DARE, Catch A Lift and other interests close to this town’s heart, both love this town.

Now they turn their eyes downtown.

Josh — who sits on the Westport Downtown Association –and Robert say,
“Tremendous progress has been made downtown, and there is no letting up.  With the continued beautification of Church Lane with ornamental baskets and hanging lights, live music on the weekends and outdoor dining, there is a desire by local merchants and community members to have this atmosphere flow right into Main Street.

“Bright lights always bring joy and happiness.  However making these improvements comes with a cost. We’ll match up to $2,500 for any donations made to lighting up Main Street.”

The Westport Downtown Association hopes many Westporters will “contribute to the continued beautification of our town, and feel a part of this positive change. The sense of community will be enhanced as we continue to make our surroundings more welcoming to all.”

To contribute and learn more, click here.

Fine Arts Festival Debuts Downtown

Early rain kept crowds low, when the 48th annual Westport Fine Arts Festival opened this morning downtown.

But the showers stopped, the temperature rose, and traffic is picking up at the Westport Downtown Association event.

The show runs today (Saturday) until 5 p.m., and tomorrow 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Artists on displya includes painting, photography, sculpture, fiber, printmaking, mixed media, glass, ceramics, jewelry, wood, graphics and print making.

There’s music, food, and plenty of activities for children. Plus: It’s nowhere near as hot as the usual mid-July oven!

Click here for more details.

Eric Heitmann of Hopewell Junction, New York was ready this morning, on the Post Road near Main Street. When the rain let up, he displayed more of his nature-oriented work. (Photo/John Karrel)

Fine Arts Festival Returns Next Weekend

Last year, the Westport Downtown Association moved its Fine Arts Festival from mid-July to Memorial Day weekend. The goal was more pleasant weather than the traditional bake-on-the-asphalt date, along with a holiday kickoff to summer.

It didn’t happen. COVID canceled the nearly-50-year-old event.

But the Westport Fine Arts Festival returns this year. It’s set for next weekend: May 29 and 30 (10 a.m. to 5 p.m.).

And — quite by accident — it’s more than just the first townwide event of the season. It’s also the first big gathering since the lifting of most major COVID restrictions.

A scene from the 2019 Fine Arts Festival. (Photo/Dan Woog)

The 48th annual Fine Arts Festival draws artists from across the country to Main Street. Their works are available for sale at a wide range of prices.

The WDA is making this all-are-welcome show as local possible. All artists will receive gift cards to use at local restaurants and cafes.

There’s live music, and food from Don Memo and Walrus Alley. Children can take selfies at 3 murals painted specially for the festival by MoCA Westport, the Artists’ Collective of Westport and One River. The (very apt) theme of the murals is “New Beginnings.”

It’s a new beginning indeed. For a very old, and cherished, tradition.