Masks in schools may not be required statewide after February 28.
Governor Lamont announced yesterday recommending lifting a mandate for students and staff.
The Planning & Zoning Commission also met last night. Members adopted 2 downtown text amendments. One will eliminate a prohibition on retail operations above the first floor. The other allows will allow stores over 10,000 square feet (after applying for a special permit).
The P&Z continued to tweak zoning language for permitted uses at Baron’s South.
A bit of personal news: To celebrate my retirement as Staples High School boys soccer coach, I’ve helped endow a fund.
The Dan Woog Staples High School/LGBTQ Fund brings together my passion for high school soccer and LGBTQ advocacy, and my work with United Soccer Coaches — the 30,000-member professional organization I’ve served since 1983.
The fund will enable high school coaches who have shown commitment to the LGBTQ sports community to attend annual conventions, for education, networking and professional growth.
As founder of United Soccer Coaches’ LGBTQ & Allies member group, I’ve worked closely with Black, Latino, Native American, AAPI, disabled and faith-based groups. I’m honored to give back to this inclusive, progressive organization, which helps grow the sport of soccer for all coaches and players.
For the full press release, click here. To contribute to the fund, click here; then click “Select for a list of funds to support,” then “Options,” then scroll (way) down. (You may have to click “View More” at the bottom of the list …)
Speaking of Staples soccer : As Westporter’s celebrate the silver medal of our neighbor, Julia Marino, in slopestyle at the 2022 Olympic Games, we’ve got another nearby athlete to cheer for too.
Freestyle skier Mac Forehand grew up in Southport. His father — Ray Forehand — was on the Staples soccer team in 1976. Click here for details. Click here for a story about Ray and his wife, as they watch Mac compete half a world away.
Mac also competes in freeski slopestyle. (Hat tip: Rick Leonard)
You know Earth Animal for its steadfast commitment to dogs and other creatures.
But since 1979, the local business has cared for people too.
Last year, the Post Road East store’s Mitten Project raised $40,000. Thanks to CT Foodshare, those funds will help local residents who struggle with food insecurity.
The Mitten Project began in 2007, with Earth Animal founder Susan Goldstein. She raised $300 that year.
Now, there’s plenty of help from area businesses, neighbors, friends, proceeds from the Earth Animal store, and matching contributions from Earth Animal Ventures in Southport.
Special thanks go to J. McLaughlin, Millie Rae;s, Farmer Sal, Outdoor Design & Living, Appleberry Farm, BP Provisions, Pine Creek Deli, KL & Sam, and Westport Hardware.
Voices Café honors Black History Month with the noted duo Reggie Harris and Greg Greenway. Their signature performance — “Deeper Than The Skin” — comes to the Westport Unitarian Church’s long-running live music venue on Sunday, February 20 (7:30 p.m). It will also be livestreamed.
“Deeper Than The Skin” is a deeply personal presentation, in story and song. of race in America. Harris and Greenway face down racial injustice with creative resistance, friendship, music and joy.
Proceeds from Voices Café’s performances benefit local social justice causes. Future guests include Westporter Suzanne Sheridan (March 12) and Connecticut’s creative artists Caravan of Thieves (April 9).
Click here for more information about Voices’ spring season, and for tickets.
The Westport Library’s strong support of the arts continues. A generous grant from the Drew Friedman Community Arts Center will support upcoming exhibits.
Next up: “Stepping Out on Faith: The Art and Journey of Charles Joyner.” The event — with the world-renowned (and Staples High School graduate) artist opens with a panel discussion and reception on March 10.
This exhibit, with a corresponding podcast series and musical performance, is also supported by a grant from CT Humanities.
Our “Westport … Naturally” feature has highlighted wild turkeys. But none have been as close-up — and wild-looking — as this shot by David Vita, from Lyons Plains Road:
And finally … want a little taste of Voices Café’s Black History Month presentation of “Deeper Than the Skin” (above)? Click below: