Thursday, November 13, 2014
‘Hey Bartender’ Gang Reunited in Westport
It was a reunion tonight for Westport director Doug Tirola (r) and the stars of his award-winning documentary “Hey Bartender”—Steve Schneider (l), and Steve Carpentieri, a co-owner of Westport’s Dunville’s, 41 Saugatuck Ave. The film tells the story of how the renaissance of the bartender comes to be in the era of the craft cocktail. Schneider agreed to be a “guest bartender” at Dunville’s to celebrate the restaurant’s recent renovations, or as Carpentieri calls it, Dunville’s 2.0. Since the theatrical release of “Hey Bartender” in 2013, Schneider has become one of the world’s best known bartenders, doing guest stints at bars in Berlin, London, Russia, Australia, and Asia. Tirola was director/producer, Danielle Rosen co-producer, and Susan Bedusa, producer. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
Guest Bartending at Dunville’s
Steve Schneider, a bartender at the West Village cocktail haunt For Employees Only, does a guest bartending stint tonight at Westport’s Dunville’s, 41 Saugatuck Ave. Schneider and Dunville’s co-owner, Steve Carpentieri, were featured in Westport director Doug Tirola’s award-winning documentary “Hey Bartender.” Schneider agreed to the Dunville’s gig to celebrate its reopening after renovations. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
Drew Friedman Sells Main St. Property for $9.2 Million
By James Lomuscio
UPDATE (adds sale recorded) Disillusioned by town zoning laws and with interests elsewhere, longtime Westport landlord-developer Drew Friedman after 31 years has sold his two-story building at 36-42 Main St., home to Bobby Q’s, formerly Onion Alley, for $9.2 million.
The two-story building at 36-42 Main St., built in the 1930, was acquired by Drew Friedman in 1983. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo
The sale, completed today, was to Forstone Capital, LLC, a Darien-based real estate investment firm that also owns 1365-1391 Post Road East, the site of Anthropologie and the building that houses Balducci’s, Friedman said. One of Forstone’s principals, Brandon Hall, lives in Westport.
The $9.2 million sale was recorded Friday in the Town Clerk’s Office, said Town Clerk Patricia Strauss.
HK Group, a Westport-based commercial real estate group that brokered the transaction, announced the sale of the 9,982-square-foot, 1930-built property on .2-acres today but did not mention the buyer or the sales price.
Malloy to Order Emergency Cuts, Hiring Freeze
By Keith M. Phaneufwww.ctmirror.org
To reverse an impending state budget deficit, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s administration has told agencies it will order emergency spending cuts and freeze all-but-critical hiring to offset an impending budget deficit.
The move prompted concerns today from both private- and public-sector unions that this would stymie Malloy’s big initiative to expand Department of Transportation professional staff and, in turn, to launch more highway, bridge and rail construction work.
In a memo sent late Wednesday to all agency heads, the governor’s budget director, Office of Policy and Management Secretary Benjamin Barnes also reinforced existing caps on overtime work.
Current budget trends, including both shrinking revenues and cost-overruns in various agencies “will ... result in a general fund deficit if management actions are not taken right away,” Barnes wrote.
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Clouds Over Saugatuck
Pouring Foundation for Kemper-Gunn House
Workers today poured the foundation in the Baldwin Parking lot for the relocated 19th century Kemper-Gunn House from Church Lane. The move will take place beginning at 6:30 a.m. Tuesday and is expected to take up to two hours. Town officials said today Elm Street will be closed during the move but motorists can access the parking lot from its western entrance on Elm Street. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
Quick Change of Signs to Two-Hour Parking
A day after the Westport Board of Selectmen voted to change the one-hour parking to two hours on Westport’s Main Street, parts of Parking-Harding Plaza, and adjacent streets, the new signs were in place today. Police Chief Dale Call and Deputy Chief Foti Koskinas personally changed the signs during their lunch hour. “We ordered the signs from our supplier on Wednesday and had them today so we decided to go out and get it done,” said Call. The Board of Selectmen will review the change after three months with an eye to making it permanent. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
A woman driver escaped serious injury today as her car became wedged against a tractor-trailer making a turn at the intersection of Post Road West and Riverside Avenue. Police closed nearby streets as the vehicles were removed. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) James Connaughton for WestportNow.com
Real Estate Report: Location, Location Drives Sales
By Judy Szablak
When it comes to Westport real estate, the most important factor continues to be “location, location, location,” which was also cited as the top reason for a move in the recently released National Association of Realtors in-depth 2014 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers.
Featured Home This home at 15 Adams Farm Road is listed at $3,389,000. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Photo courtesy of Westport Residential, LLC
That is, location of the neighborhood, convenience to one’s work location, and location of the most desirable schools.
Neighborhood continues to be the top influencer, and the Compo Beach area has been Westport’s hottest neighborhood this year by far, followed by Coleytown and the Hunt Club area, as judged by homes actively on the market as compared to the number of homes sold in these specific market areas.
The school district choice remains very important to today’s buyers as well, with Saugatuck Elementary district seeing tremendous activity, followed by Long Lots, with Greens Farms and Coleytown nearly tied for third place.
And Now the Ivy
After removing trees in front of the former Westport Weston Family Y building on Wednesday, tree crews today removed the ivy that had grown for decades on the 1923-built building. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
Uncovered After All These Years
With removal of trees and ivy in front of the former Westport Weston Family Y building on Post Road East, two gargoyles above the main entranceway of the 1923-built building are finally seeing the light of day. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
Efforts Intensified to Find Cheaper School Bus Parking
The Town of Westport is stepping up efforts to find a less expensive place to park its school buses.
Board of Education Chair Elaine Whitney and First Selectman Jim Marpe have announced creation of a joint Board of Education (BOE) and Town of Westport School Bus Parking Task Force.
The group will include members of the BOE, Selectman’s Office, Board of Selectmen (BOS), Board of Finance (BOF) and Representative Town Meeting (RTM).
The Task Force will be operating as a Board of Education committee. However, BOE member, Karen Kleine and Town Operations Director Dewey Loselle will jointly lead the review and search effort, an announcement said.
Fall Colors Along the Saugatuck
Thursday, November 13, 2014
8:30 a.m. - Town Hall Room 309 - Special Meeting BOE Bus Parking Task Force
2 p.m. - Westport Library - TV Series: “Downton Abbey,” Season 4
6:30 p.m. - Fire Headquarters (515 Post Road) - Blight Prevention Board Public Hearing
7 p.m. - Town Hall Auditorium - Village District Steering Committee and Planning & Zoning Commission (live coverage cable channel 79, AT&T channel 99, and westportct.gov)
7 p.m. - Westport Library - Daniel Menaker on “My Mistake”
See more events: Celebrate Westport Calendar
Wednesday, November 12, 2014
Bridgeport Students See NYC Art Highlights Thanks to WAC
Tenth grade students from Bridgeport’s Bridge Academy charter school today visited New York’s Chelsea art district as part of the Connections program of the Westport Arts Center (WAC). Helen Klisser During, WAC artistic director, and WAC staffers Jill Sarver, Rebecca Brown, and Marni Katz, as well as Laura Spada, a member or the WAC Education Committee, pose with the students in front of artist Takashi Murakami’s work on display at the Gagosian Gallery. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo
‘A League of Their Own’ to be Screened Sunday
Westport Cinema Initiative and Project Return are partnering to present “A League of Their Own,” a 1992 fictionalized account of the real-life All-American Girls Professional Baseball League.
Starring Tom Hanks and Geena Davis and directed by Penny Marshall, the comedy-drama will be shown Sunday, Nov. 16 at 4 p.m. at Westport Town Hall. Tickets are $10 and are available at http://www.westportcinema.org.
The film tells the story of the women’s baseball team as it tours the United States during World War II. The light-hearted look at early professional female athletes shows just how ground breaking and resilient these early pioneers were in playing the sport that they loved.
The screening is sponsored by Lee Rawiszer of Paradigm Financial Partners. A brief talk back with Doug Tirola of the Westport Cinema Initiative board, and Meghan Skelton, from the Weston Public Schools, will follow. There will also be a pizza supper at Project Return for the first 30 people who RSVP, an announcement said.
Town Clerk: Westport’s Voter Turnout Highest in County
Among those enjoying themselves today at a League of Women Voters of Westport post-election luncheon were (l-r) Town Clerk Patricia Strauss, Selectman Helen Garten, First Selectman Jim Marpe, and Board of Assessment Appeals member Elaine Arnow. Strauss told the guests that Westport’s almost 62 percent voter turnout was the highest in Fairfield County and thanked the League for its voters’ guide. “It is so important to the residents of Westport,” she said. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
LWV of Westport Post-Election Lunch
Scenes from today’s League of Women Voters of Westport post-election lunch held at the home of Hope and Alvin Hageman. Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Going Down: Trees in Front of Y Building
Tree crews today took down the trees in front of the former Westport Weston Y building on Post Road East in preparation for construction of the Bedford Square Development. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
A worker takes down one of the trees in front of the former Westport Weston Family Y building on Post Road East today. Developer David Waldman said the new Bedford Square Associates development will include extensive trees and plantings. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
Westport Shoppers Gain an Hour Downtown
By James Lomuscio
Holiday shoppers along Westport’s Main Street and sections of Parker-Harding Plaza will have an extra hour without worrying about be ticketed. So, too, will downtown restaurant patrons.
The diagonal parking in Parker-Harding Plaza will go from one hour to two hours along with spaces on Main Street. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
The Board of Selectmen today unanimously approved a request from the Downtown Merchants Association (DMA) to replace one-hour with two-hour parking along Main Street from Post Road East to Kings Highway North, as well as in the diagonal spaces in Parker-Harding Plaza at the back of Main Street buildings.
“What the Board of Selectmen has done was to do it on a three-month trial basis, and after three months, we will evaluate it,” said First Selectman Jim Marpe.
Marpe said that the one-hour limit, which has been in place for decades, was designed for a different Main Street, “basically where you would have people run in for 15 minutes to the hardware store or Gristede’s that was here,” he added. “You wanted to encourage people to shop and leave.”
Selectman Approve Two-Hour Parking for Parker-Harding
UPDATE Westport Traffic Agent Gerald Waldron checks cars in the Parker-Harding Plaza parking lot today hours after the Board of Selectmen approved a change to two-hour parking for the entire lot for a three-month trial. Also changing will be one hour parking on Main Street to two hours. The board acted upon the request of the Downtown Merchants Association (DMA) which said it had received repeated complaints over the years that the one-hour parking limit—in Parker-Harding for cars on the left against the back of the Main Street buildings—was too short. Adding to the confusion of Parker-Harding parkers was the fact that some of the spaces were two hours and some one hour. The board said it would evaluate the change in three months with an eye to making it permanent. Stephen Desloge, DMA president, said he hoped the change would be implemented before “Black Friday” shopping the day after Thanksgiving. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
Comings & Goings: Positano’s to Playhouse Campus
Positano’s Restaurant, a mainstay at Westport’s Old Mill Beach for 13 years, will move in February to the Westport Country Playhouse campus in a building occupied until last February by the Dressing Room Restaurant, (See WestportNow Feb. 1, 2014), the Playhouse announced today. The Positano property changed hands in September for $2 million. Positano’s will close on Dec. 31 at its current location. It is unclear whether it will remain a restaurant or become a residential building. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
New Look: Eastbound Steps at Green’s Farms
Page 5 of 1649 pages
Riders at the Metro-North Green’s Farms station can once again enjoy the convenience of a stairway that connects parking lots to the arrival and departure platforms. The project of replacing wooden steps with granite ones was completed two weeks ahead of schedule, according to Deputy Police Chief Foti Koskinas. View is of the steps to the eastbound platform. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
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PROPERTY TRANSFERSWestport Property Transfers Nov. 3 - 7, 2014
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