Tag Archives: Westport Weston Chamber of Commerc

Roundup: Affordable Housing, Utility Poles, Pride …

A follow-up on the Representative Town Meeting’s recent “Community Conversation on Affordable Housing” promises to be as important and illuminating as the first.

“Our Town’s Affordable Housing Needs and Solutions: What Westporters Should Know and How They Can Help” will be held — virtually — on Wednesday (May 17, 7:30 p.m.).

RTM moderator Jeff Wieser will lead a panel of men and women who know the topic intimately: State Senator Ceci Maher, State Representative Jonathan Steinberg, Planning & Zoning Commission chair Danielle Dobin, RTM Planning & Zoning Committee chair Matthew Mandell, and Westport Housing Authority chair David Newberg.

As with the first session — which drew 200 people — there will be plenty of time for public questions.

Click here to join the Zoom meeting.


Paul Rohan writes:

Over the years, I have read many comments, complaints and suggestions about utility poles on “06880.”

I am reminded of them all each day on my morning walk, as I pass by this set of seemingly unstable utility poles on Hillspoint Road between Harding Lane and Valley Road.

For over 5 years, I wondered when the appropriate utilities will transfer all their lines to the newer replacement pole and remove the decayed one.

It seems it will never happen. But lately there has been some progress: a new black nylon band has been added to somehow supplement the existing the wooden brace clamp, the metal support arms, and bands of rope!


A crowd of nearly 300 “walked the line” to see Johnny Folsom 4’s tribute to Johnny Cash Saturday night, at the Westport Library.

A record 126 people had dinner at 10 downtown restaurants before the show, as part of “Supper & Soul.” The downtown dinner and concert series is produced by the Westport Weston Chamber of Commerce.

Johnny Folsom 4 (Photo/Dinkin Fotografix)


Just in time for Pride Month, Westport Pride has a new web presence.

The colorful, easy-to-navigate site (www.westportpride.org) builds on the non-profit’s mission to “elevate, educate and empower” the town about LGBTQ issues and community members.

Upcoming events include

  • Pride Celebration (Sunday, June 4, noon-4 p.m., Jesup Green)
  • “Light Up the Night” drag show (Saturday, June 17, 5 p.m., MoCA)

An oral history project — organized in conjunction with the Westport Museum for History & Culture — is looking for people to interview about their lives and times: in school, at the Brook Café, or anywhere else in the area. Email cmenard@westporthistory.org.


The Westport Rotary Club recently joined Habitat for Humanity of Coastal Fairfield County, to rebuild a house in Bridgeport. The project helps residents  become homeowners.

This was the first time Westport Rotary volunteered at Habitat. It was so popular, a return visit has been scheduled for next year.


Saturday’s list of National Merit Scholar winners omitted one name: Liyana Asaria-Issa.

The Greens Farms Academy senior joins 3 other Westport residents as recipients of $2,500 scholarships. Congratulations, Liyana!

Liyana Asaria-Issa


Sholdr is a new clothing brand.

Co-founder Christian Montgomery — a 2018 Staples High School graduate — is creating quality, comfortable clothing, inspired by the oceans.

His goal is to build a community around the brand — and one that supports mental health awareness.

One of the founders lost a friend to suicide. He had recently joined the military. So Sholder is donating 5% of profits to the Headstrong Project. The non-profit provides mental health resources to active military members, and veterans.

This Saturday (May 20, noon to 4 p.m.) they’ll run their first pop-up event at the Two Roads Vendor Market (1700 Stratford Avenue, Stratford). Sholdr will be in the hopyard talking about their mission, and selling shirts and hoodies.


Between the trains, weather and riders, the Westport train station gets plenty of use.

It usually looks pretty good. But it doesn’t clean itself.

This weekend, Les Dinkin spotted a crew, working hard to make sure it’s ready for Monday.

(Photo/Dinkin Fotografix)


“Westport … Naturally” begins the week with this colorful view from Ellen Wentworth’s window:

(Photo/Ellen Wentworth)


And finally … Saturday’s “Supper & Soul” included a great concert by Johnny Folsom 4, a Johnny Cash tribute band (story above).

That’s a great segue into a song from the Man in Black himself:

(It’s a new week — and another reminder that “06880” relies on reader support. Please click here to donate. Thank you!) 

Roundup: Pizza, Trump, Cops …

Old Mill Grocery & Deli, Outpost and Romanacci were all double winners in Westport’s Great Pizza Contest.

Nearly 2,000 votes were cast throughout March, for 14 restaurants and markets.

OMG won in the Best Meat and Best Veggie Pizza categories. Outpost won for Best Slice and Best Delivered Pizza, while Romanacci copped top honors for Best Personal and Best Gluten-Free Pizza.

Solo winners were La Plage (Best Flatbread) and Pizza Lyfe (Best Plain).

The Westport Weston Chamber of Commerce sponsored the event. They’re already planning next years return of the Great Burger Contest.


Joe Tacopina — one of former President Trump’s lead lawyers — was not the only Westport connection to Tuesday’s historic Manhattan arraignment.

Staples High School Class of 2002 graduate Toby Burns covered the event for The Hill.

And, Toby says, his longtime friend and fellow Staples grad Frank Runyeon — an award-winning criminal justice reporter for legal news service Law360 — was “the most knowledgeable court reporter on the ground” outside the courthouse. He helped coordinate “hundreds of global journalists.”

That’s not all. Frank also drew the lucky straw, and was the first journalist of all those hundreds to see the actual indictment. (Hat tip: Kerry Long)


Speaking of elections: There are 53 new voters in Westport.

The League of Women Voters registered them — all seniorso — yesterday, as part of Staples High School’s Invest in Yourself day.

It was the first such event since the pandemic began 3 years ago.

New voter registration at Staples.


Westport Police made 2 custodial arrests between March 29 and April 5.

A home health care aide was arrested for 2nd degree larceny, illegal use of credit card, and receiving goods obtained by illegal use of credit card, after a complaint by a Westport resident.

A Westport man was arrested for 3rd degree criminal mischief after a complaint from someone who saw him punch and break a window in the front door of a business. Police investigated the license plate, and found the man with fresh cuts and blood on his hand. He had no explanation for why he broke the window.

Westport Police did not report citations issued this week.


Michael Friedman’s great new book “Exposed” — his lost-and-then-found up-close-and-personal photos chronicling rock legends like Janis Joplin, The Rolling Stones and The Band — gets great exposure April 22 (7 p.m., Westport Library).

He’ll talk about the book, the photos and the stories behind them on a panel with WPLR’s Mike Lapitino and longtime local musician Roger Kaufman.

The panel will be followed by live music from the era with Kaufman’s longtime band, Old School Revue. Special guests include drummer Chris Parker (who played with Bob Dylan, Bonnie Raitt, the Paul Butterfield Blues Band and Todd Rundgren), bassist Stu Woods (Dylan, Rundgren, Jim Croce), and Staples High School graduate Drew Angus.

Signed copies of Friedman’s book, along with prints, will be available for purchase.


Also at the Library:

Westporter Margrit Strohmaier celebrates the launch of her second book — “What to Know Before You Get Your Cat” — on April 19 (7 p.m.).

She’ll be interviewed by Julie Loparo, president of Westport Animal Shelter Advocates. This book is aimed at young readers; it’s a follow-up to her debut, “What to Know Before You Get Your Dog.”

It’s part of the “Saugatuck Scribes: Healing & Caregiving” event. Tracy Livecchi — who wrote Healing Hearts and Minds: A Holistic Approach to Coping Well With Congenital Heart Disease — will be featured too.

The discussion will be followed by book signings, and a drawing for a gift basket.

Margrit Strohmaier


And more about writing:

Westport Writers’ Workshop‘s “More Than Words: Celebrating Outreach to Unheard Writers” fundraiser is set for April 28 (6 to 9 p.m., Wakeman Town Farm). The event includes light dinner fare, music, a door prize and silent auction.

Proceeds support WWW’s Outreach Program. The writing organization offers in-person and online workshops for writers of all levels, along with “the gift of expression” to people unable to take a traditional class.

Westport Writers’ Workshop has expanded their reach outside their core classroom to individuals undergoing special challenges, or who have survived hardship, abuse, or trauma.

The Outreach Program provides complimentary writing workshops for organizations that request them. Volunteers help new writers heal and grow through story.

Among the WWW’s partners: the Center for Empowerment and Education, Homes for the Brave, Caroline House, Harlem Village Academies, Writing for Women Affected by Breast Cancer, College Essay Writing for Fairfield Seniors, and Writing for Women with Special Needs Children. For more details on the program, email info@westportwriters.org.

Click here for tickets, and more information.


Club 203 — Westport’s social organization for adults with disabilities — heads outside, for its next event.

TAP Strength leads a fun, fitness and movement field day on April 20 (6 to 7:30 p.m., Jesup Green). MoCA Westport will be there with crafts, too.

The cost is $10 per person. Click here to register.

Westport Book Shop will be open during the event, for parents to mix and mingle.

New members can click here to join Club 203, and click here for the consent form.


If spring cleaning includes getting rid of old mattresses and box springs — hold on until May 20.

That morning Earthplace, Sustainable Westport and Bye Bye Mattress will sponsor a free mattress and box spring recycling event. Up to 90% of them can be recycled into carpet pads, exercise equipment and bike seat cushions, insulation, air filters and steel materials.

The event runs from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m., at Earthplace.

Can’t transport your mattress or box spring? No problem!

Boy Scout Troop 36 will provide pickup service, for a small donation. Click here to sign up.

Saving the planet, one mattress at a time. (Photo: Pippa Bell Ader)


Yesterday’s wind brought kept most people away from Compo Beach.

But it attracted at least one kiteboarder.

Today’s forecast calls for showers, but with temperatures reaching into the 70s.

(Photo/Nathan Greenbaum)


Andy Weeks spotted today’s “Westport … Naturally” photo in a very nature-unfriendly part of town: Compo Shopping Center.

Somehow, this old tree survives amid traffic, gasoline fumes, even an old metal post.

As baseball season begins, remember the adage: “Mother Nature bats last.”

(Photo/Andy Weeks)


And finally … congratulations to Westport’s Great Pizza Contest winners: