Thursday, June 14, 2007
Yankee Doodle Fair Kicks Off Today
The Westport Woman’s Club has been gearing up for the 100th Annual Yankee Doodle Fair, which kicks off tonight at 5 p.m. and continues through the weekend. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com
The 100th anniversary of the Westport Woman’s Club Yankee Doodle Fair kicks off today at 5 p.m. at the Imperial Avenue parking lot and runs through the weekend with activities planned throughout the weekend to celebrate the centennial anniversary.
The fair runs 5-11 p.m. today and Friday. Hours are 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Saturday and noon to 6 p.m. on Sunday.
There will be a parade on Saturday at 9 a.m. from Veterans Green in front of Town Hall, on Avery Place, across Main Street, through Parker Harding Plaza, across Post Road East to Jesup Green. The parade includes antique cars and horse-drawn carriages and represents 10 decades.
The upper lot around the Woman’s Club features carinval rides, and the Woman’s Club auditorium will host a bake sale and book sale. The Curio Thrift Shop will hold a 50 percent off sale.
Swimming with Mom
Temperatures were only in the 60s in Westport on Wednesday under overcast skies, but a mother swan tended to her child along the Saugatuck River near Parker Harding Plaza. Temperatures are expected again to be in the 60s today. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com
Changes Announced at WestportNow
WestportNow Editor Jennifer Connic has resigned effective Friday and a search is under way for a successor, WestportNow Publisher Gordon Joseloff announced today.
“Jen Connic has done an excellent job at WestportNow and will be sorely missed,” said Joseloff, who is also Westport’s First Selectman. “She has set the standard for local online news coverage that others can only envy.”
Connic, who has been editor for almost two years, has taken a position with a New Jersey newspaper to oversee its Web operations.
Joseloff, who was founding editor of WestportNow in 2003, also announced that he has asked Westport attorney Steve Nevas to head a search group seeking a new publisher.
Thursday, June 14, 2007
10 a.m. - 2 p.m. - Westport Country Playhouse - Farmers Market
Noon - Westport Public Library - authors@the library: Emily Barton
5 p.m. - 11 p.m. - Westport Woman’s Club - Yankee Doodle Fair
6 p.m. - Westport Public Library - Harry Potter@the movies
7 p.m. – Town Hall Room 201 – Planning & Zoning Commission Work Session
7 p.m. – Westport Fire Headquarters – Public Site & Building Commission
8 p.m. - Westport Country Playhouse - “Souvenir”
Today’s rainy, cloudy weather with temperatures in the 60s kept many people away from Westport beaches. At the Ned Dimes Marina at Compo Beach, a visitor checked out the shoreline. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Wednesday, June 13, 2007
FEMA Extends April Nor’easter Aid to Individual Homeowners
Westport homeowners hard hit by April’s nor’easter will get federal government aid after all, Gov. M. Jodi Rell’s office announced today.
The decision is a reversal of the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s initial decision to provide aid to only municipal governments and nonprofit organizations in Fairfield and Litchfield counties.
“This is a huge victory for Connecticut residents whose homes and businesses were damaged by this exceptionally severe storm,” Rell said in a statement.
State officials later released details on how to apply for the aid. Homeowners will need to speak with FEMA directly at 1-800-621-3362 (Phone lines are open between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. seven days a week) or they may go to www.fema.gov.
Historic District Office Opens at Town Hall
There is a new office at Westport Town Hall dedicated to the Historic District Commission and the preservation of historic properties.
Carol Leahy started on Monday as the commission’s administrator and also as the Certified Local Government coordinator, filling a position that was approved last winter by the Board of Finance and Representative Town meeting for $24,000 (See WestportNow Dec. 10).
P&Z Director Laurence Bradley said there isn’t enough space to add staff in the Planning and Zoning Department, which is where the Historic District Commission’s work was located until this week, so they office was opened in Room 108.
The files are located in the new office, he said, and people who want to file an application or research historic properties will need to go there.
Fire Department Receiving $50,000 State Grant
After two years of paperwork and waiting, the Westport Fire Department hopes to receive a $50,000 state grant for minor upgrades to three fire stations.
The Board of Selectmen voted to receive the grant during its meeting on Tuesday.
Fire Chief Christopher Ackley said the grant will install central air conditioning at the Coleytown, Greens Farms and Saugatuck fire stations.
The stations currently have window air conditioning units, he said, and department officials spent a large amount of money to replace and maintain them.
HDC Discusses 1929 Myrtle Avenue Teardown
By Linda Alvkall
Many Westport residents gathered in Town Hall Tuesday night to show their concern regarding a possible demolition of home at 48 Myrtle Ave. built in 1929.
The house at 48 Myrtle Ave. at Evergreen Avenue was featured as the WestportNow Teardown of the Day on May 30. The Historic District Commission delayed its demolition for 60 days. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Following its appearance as WestportNow’s Teardown of the Day on May 30, one resident characterized it as a classic Westport arts and crafts home “that was restored and renovated to perfection.”
Jim Denno, an architect and designer who presented plans for the replacement stone, English-style cottage home, told the commission the new house would be 4 to 5 feet higher than the present building. He said the foundation needs to be replaced due to carbon monoxide levels in the basement.
He said the current owner is complaining about the fire alarm going off weekly due to the lack of ventilation and a low ceiling in the basement.
Coastal Flood Advisory Issued
The National Weather Service issued a coastal flood advisory for Connecticut, including Westport, for 6 p.m. today through 1 a.m. on Thursday.
The advisory is in effect because of expected prolonged winds of 15 to 25 miles per hour combined with a new moon that could cause higher tides, the advisory states.
The tides could be one to two feet higher than normal, the advisory states, which could cause minor flooding.
If the wind speeds increase, a flood watch or warning could be issued, the advisory states.
Hand in Hand
It was hot and humid in Westport today, and walkers were out at Compo Beach before brief showers moved into the area. There is a chance for rain again today. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Wednesday, June 13, 2007
8 a.m. – Town Hall Room 201 – Maintenance Study Committee
10:30 a.m. – Town Hall Room 102 – International Hospitality Committee
2 & 8 p.m. - Westport Country Playhouse - “Souvenir”
7 p.m. – Town Hall Room 309/307 – RTM Public Works Committee
7:30 p.m. - Westport Public Library - authors@the library: Cathryn Prince
Tuesday, June 12, 2007
Democratic Women Honor Kassen
Selectwoman Shelly Kassen receives the Silver Donkey Award from the Democratic Women of Westport today while First Selectman Gordon Joseloff, who presented her the award, looks on. Kassen has been selectwoman for nearly two years and previously served on the Board of Finance, including as vice-chairman. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Selectmen Approve Turf Project
The Westport Board of Selectmen this afternoon approved the installation of synthetic turf on two athletic fields after hearing public health officials state there is no danger to anyone’s health.
Several parents have expressed concerns about the potential for carcinogens being released from the rubber in the turf (See WestportNow June 6), but none from the group spoke during today’s session.
Instead, the selectmen heard from a state health official who said there was no health risk from the rubber fill from the synthetic turf.
Parks and Recreation Director Stuart McCarthy said no local or state agency has banned the turf or issued a warning about potential health risks associated with it.
Israeli Author and Columnist to Speak Friday
Yossi Klein Halevi: Speaking on “A Jewish Journey into Christianity and Islam.” Contributed photoWestport’s Temple Israel, Christ and Holy Trinity and the Methodist Church will join with the Anti-Defamation League to present a community lecture from author Yossi Klein Halevi on Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Temple Israel, which is located at 14 Coleytown Road.
Halevi will speak about “A Jewish Journey into Christianity and Islam: A Search for a Spiritual Language of Reconciliation.” The lecture follows the Sabbath service, which starts at 6:30 p.m.
He is a contributing editor and Israel correspondent for the New Republic. He is the author of “At the Entrance to the Garden of Eden: A Jew’s Search for God with Christians and Muslims in the Holy Land.”
The lecture is free and open to all. For information, call Temple Israel at (203) 227-1293.
Historical Society Presents Summer Camp
The Westport Historical Society will offer its fourth annual Time Travelers summer camp for children this summer.
Children ages 6 through 11 are eligible to attend the camp that will give them the opportunity to experience history through crafts, cooking, storytelling, drama and play.
Each session is one week, and each session is different. Each also includes a field trip, a day at the Adams Academy, guest artists, scavenger hunts and homemade ice cream.
The children will also create an exhibit for the historical society.
For more information, call Susan Gold at (203) 222-1424.
Before the Thunderstorms
There was plenty of sun on Monday to allow time for bicycling in the Compo Beach area of Westport, but darker clouds and thunderstorms moved into the area after dark. There remains to be a 50 percent chance for rain today. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Tuesday, June 12, 2007
8:30 a.m. – Town Hall Room 201 – Human Services Commission
8:30 a.m. – Town Hall Room 201A – Planning & Zoning Commission Affordable Housing Subcommittee
3 p.m. – Town Hall Room 309/307 – Board of Selectmen (live coverage cable channel 79 and westportct.gov)
7 p.m. – Town Hall Room 309 – Historic District Commission
7 p.m. - Westport Public Library - MovieLine: “Venus”
7:30 p.m. – Town Hall Auditorium – Zoning Board of Appeals (live coverage cable channel 79 and westportct.gov)
7:30 p.m. – Town Hall Room 201 – Architectural Review Board
8 p.m. - Westport Country Playhouse - “Souvenir”
Joseloff, RTM Face Off on Family Y Location
Westport First Selectman Gordon Joseloff faced off with RTM Long-Range Planning Committee members tonight over his desires to not locate the Westport Weston Family Y at Baron’s South or Winslow Park.
Joseloff and Dan Lawrence, project manager from Weston and Sampson Engineers, presented the results of an engineering study for Baron’s South and Jesup Green during the committee’s meeting tonight.
After questioning from the committee, Lawrence said there would be a way to fit the new facility for the Westport Weston Family Y at Baron’s South, and committee Chairman Jack Klinge said the group should tour Baron’s South.
Joseloff went to the podium during the discussions of a tour and said that he is only proposing municipal uses for Baron’s South and Winslow Park, which does not include a Family Y facility.
Special Education Report Focuses on Improving Program
The Westport Board of Education tonight received a report on how school officials should respond to a survey of special education parents, and it includes 12 recommendations.
The Special Education Task Force has been working since last fall on how school officials should respond to a survey that was completed a year ago. That survey showed most special education parents were satisfied (See WestportNow May 1, 2006).
“However, there are pockets of significant concern within particular student populations,” the report states. “Similarly, there are significant pockets of concern within staff responses.
“Therefore, we recommend implementing several actions, which will be explored in turn.”
Monday, June 11, 2007
Joseloff and Rell Seek Better Merritt Tree Safety
Westport First Selectman Gordon Joseloff today asked state officials to examine tree safety along the Merritt Parkway, and Gov. M. Jodi Rell expressed similar concerns in response.
Before Saturday’s tragic accident, a tree fell on the Merritt Parkway just north of the Clinton Avenue overpass in Westport on May 5. In that incident, there were no injuries. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo ©2007 WestportNow.com
Joseloff’s request came after two people were killed in a crash on the parkway Saturday night when a tree fell across the road. The couple’s two children, who were in the back seat of the vehicle, survived the crash (See WestportNow June 10).
“I am deeply disturbed by the tragic accident of a tree falling on a car Saturday night on the Merritt Parkway in Westport, killing two persons and injuring two children,” Joseloff wrote in a letter to Rell.
“While I know it is impossible to monitor and detect every tree with potential problems, it is incumbent on us as elected officials to do everything we can to assure the safety and integrity of our public highways as best we can.”
Y’s Women End Year with Picnic
The Y’s Women of Westport Weston held its annual picnic today at Sherwood Island. As part of the day, Ann Lloyd, Y’s Women president, presented a check to Helene Weir, Westport Weston Family Y chief executive officer, to be used for scholarships for children who want to attend Camp Mahackeno this summer. Also, Ted Simon presented a musical selection. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Kassen to Receive Silver Donkey Award
Selectwoman Shelly Kassen will receive the Democratic Women of Westport’s 2007 Silver Donkey Award at the annual Silver Donkey Luncheon scheduled on Tuesday at Connie and Stewart Greenfield’s home at 279 Sturges Highway at 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Additionally, the Staples High School female senior who will receive the annual tuition award will be announced.
The luncheon is $20, and those who attend should bring a non-perishable food to be donated to the Interfaith Housing Association’s food pantry.
For more information ot to make reservations, call Ginger Tobey at (203) 226-7676 or Janet Aley at (203) 227-2816.
Staples Students Suspended for Senior Prank
Staples High School officials suspended nine seniors after a prank went wrong on Friday, but the students will return to school on Tuesday and will not miss any graduation activities.
Staples Principal John Dodig sent a letter to Westport high school parents today, and said in an interview students rode scooters through the hallways on Friday.
The students in the cafeteria followed the students into the hallways and caused a crush.
“It was like a stampede,” he said. “A girl was knocked over. We were lucky no one was seriously hurt. They all will come back tomorrow and go on the senior class trip, take their finals and walk at graduation.”Page 1279 of 1682 pages
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