Friday, July 14, 2006
What better way to cool off than with toes in the water and a good book in hand. Temperatures reached into the mid-80s away from the shore in Westport today but stayed under 80 at Compo Beach. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com
Firefighter Recruits Sought
Westport Fire Department officials are seeking a few brave people and plan to diversify the department along the way.
Starting Wednesday, those interested in joining the department can apply to take the test. Applications will be available in the personnel office in Town Hall Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. until Aug. 17.
Department officials are seeking five new recruits to fill vacancies that will be created due to promotions.
Fire Chief Christopher Ackley said he is also working with TEAM Westport to diversify the department.
Power Outage Hits Near Fairfield Line
A power outage shortly after 1 p.m. today affected parts of Westport’s Greens Farms area as well as Post Road East from Maple Avenue to the Fairfield town line. Connecticut Light & Power Co. said 485 customers were out at 2 p.m., but power was restored a short time later. A Westport policeman directs traffic at Post Road East and Maple Avenue. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
With clear blue skies, a gentle breeze, and temperatures in the 80s, today is a good one to be on the water. At Westport’s Longshore Sailing School this morning, young sailors practiced rounding their mark (the yellow buoy) and sailing in a straight line. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Emily Hamilton Laux for WestportNow.com
Farrell Fund-Raising Pulls Her Almost Even With Shays
Former Westport First Selectwoman Diane Farrell raised almost $788,000 in the last quarter, pulling the Democratic congressional candidate almost even with Republican U.S. Rep. Christopher Shays in cash on hand.
Farrell, who narrowly lost to Shays two years ago, now has $1.4 million on hand, according to her campaign.
The Shays campaign said it has about $1.5 million to spend after raising about $638,000 last quarter.
Farrell has raised more than twice as much money as her 2004 campaign had at this time last election. Shays has raised 50 percent more.
Thursday, July 13, 2006
P&Z Continues Hearing on “Supportive Housing” Proposal
The Westport Planning and Zoning Commission Thursday night continued until September a hearing on a controversial proposal to build “supportive housing” in the Saugatuck area.
The application by Interfaith Housing Association (IHA) calls for six units of “supportive housing” on West End Avenue. The IHA, which runs the town’s homeless shelter, says the project will help those who need housing transition to living on their own.
Also continued until Sept. 14 was a competing application for a regulation change by the Save Old Saugatuck group. It says it does not oppose the IHA’s work but wants a smaller housing project that fits better into the neighborhood.
Taking in the Sun
Westport’s Rick Benson Installed as Rotary Official
More than 150 Rotarians attended Thurday night’s annual Rotary District installation ceremony in North Haven at which Westporter Rick Benson was installed as Rotary district governor-elect for 2007-2008. Chip Lewis of Wallingford, the newly installed district governor, watches as Ernestine Luise of Derby, district governor-elect for 2006-2007, places the official commemorative pin on Benson’s lapel. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Friday, July 14, 2006
6:30 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - Members Show 2006: Solo Show III opening
8 p.m. - Westport Country Playhouse - “Constant Star”
8 p.m. - Levitt Pavilion - River City Slim & the Zydeco Hogs
Parents Air Concerns, Landon’s Position Remains Unchanged
Westport parents had their chance tonight to air concerns over the departure of Bedford Middle School science teacher Ejay Clark. But Schools Superintendent Elliott Landon said his position has not changed.
Former Bedford Middle School teacher Ejay Clark (c) sits next to his attorney, Lewis Brey, at tonight’s Board of Education meeting. Brey is a former member of the board. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Emily Hamilton Laux for WestportNow.com
The Board of Education hearing, which at times was punctuated by shouts of frustration by parents supporting Clark, was forced by parents who filed a petition under state statutes requesting it. The petition listed 20 questions the parents wanted answered.
Clark resigned last spring from his position after being told school officials would not recommend him for tenure, but now seeks a hearing on his status with the district. School officials, however, said he has no standing to request the hearing.
Landon said at the end of tonight’s hearing that he had not heard anything to change his mind on Clark’s future with the district.
Board of Ed Holds Hearing on Former Teacher
A bird’s eye view of tonight’s Westport Board of Education meeting at Bedford Middle School. The meeting at times was punctuated by shouts of frustration from parents supporting former science teacher Ejay Clark. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Emily Hamilton Laux for WestportNow.com
Teacher Reviews Show Major Changes in One Year
Ejay Clark (photo from TV): appears before Board of Education tonight. WestportNow.com photoThe reviews of Bedford Middle School science teacher Ejay Clark show he was “excellent” in his first year, but he was rated as needing growth in his second year.
Parents who obtained Clark’s reviews – including observation notes and recommendations—made them available to WestportNow (click here for the documents). [PDF 8.5 MB])
The Westport Board of Education held a meeting tonight at the request of parents through a petition signed by almost 200 parents.
In the first year’s evaluation form, Clark was held to be “excellent” in all areas with few comments, but in his second year he only got the rating in 10 of 31 areas.
A Taste of the Farm
Children checked out two baby goats at the Westport Farmers Market today. They are part of the Goatboy Soaps, a New Milford-based group, stand. The soaps are all made using goat milk. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com
Traffic Eases at Farmers Market
The crowds were still steady during the third week of Westport’s Farmers Market today, but people were spread throughout more of the day.
“We still had a rush between 10 and 11:30, but it hasn’t been nearly as bad,” said Katherine Dyer, market manager.
Close to 300 people had already visited the market by noon, she said, and there have been around 400 people visiting the market on each Thursday.
Market managers have encouraged people to visit the market later in the day because products are still available later.
Wednesday, July 12, 2006
Piling Up the Books
Mimi Greemlee, Mike Stashower and a crew of volunteers unpacked 25,000 cartons that contained 65,000 books, CDs and tapes for the Westport Public Library’s annual Summer Book Sale. The sale runs Saturday through Tuesday. Hours Saturday and Sunday are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. , and Tuesday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com
Thursday, July 13, 2006
9 a.m. – Westport Fire Headquarters – Public Site & Building Commission Levitt Pavilion Subcommittee
10 a.m. - Westport Country Playhouse - Farmers Market
5:30 p.m. – Town Hall Room 201 – Emily McLaury House Committee
7 p.m. – Town Hall Auditorium – Planning & Zoning Commission Public Hearing
7 p.m. – Westport Fire Headquarters – Public Site & Building Commission
7:30 p.m. - Bedford Middle School cafeteria - Special Board of Education hearing
8 p.m. - Westport Country Playhouse - “Constant Star”
8 p.m. - Levitt Pavilion - “Innovata Brass,” jazz, blues, symphonic melodies
Westport Emergency Medical Service volunteers trained with Westport firefighters tonight in a simulated car accident. The EMS volunteers served as “victims” inside the car while firefighters cut them free. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Driver Injured in Wilton Road Crash
As torrential rains fell today, a motorist veered off Westport’s Wilton Road near No. 362 and struck a tree, knocking it down. The Bridgeport man suffered minor injuries and declined to be transported to a hospital. The driver of a passing pickup truck bumped the car as he swerved to avoid a collision and manged to stop short before running into the tree. The accident tied up late afternoon commuter traffic. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
All Gone: 14 Yankee Hill Road
Crews demolished the house at 14 Yankee Hill Road today. The house is off of Compo Road South and sold last month for $1.95 million. It was the WestportNow Teardown of the Day on June 21. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
A police car blocks the railroad underpass on Westport’s Compo Road South as flood waters recede following this afternoon’s heavy rains. Motorists were detoured to Hillspoint Road. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
What Can Happen When You Try to Drive Through High Water
A Westport police officer confers with a motorist after his car became disabled in flood waters on Imperial Avenue. The driver said he thought he could make it through but stalled out. More than 1 inch of rain fell during the afternoon torrential downpour. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
There were about 100 children at the Westport Public Library when a tornado warning was issued this afternoon. The children’s librarians gathered them all away from the windows and presented an impromptu storytime. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo
The railroad underpass on Westport’s Compo Road South begins to flood during this afternoon’s heavy rains. Two cars became disabled in the water before police closed the roadway off. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Emily Hamilton Laux for WestportNow.com
Storms Roll Through Westport
Thunderstorms with heavy rains rolled through Westport this afternoon. There was flash flooding on many local roads, including on South Compo Road. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Emily Hamilton Laux for WestportNow.com
Torrential Rains Hit Westport Area Amid Tornado Warning
A house at 27 Warnock Drive off of Easton Road in Westport’s Coleytown section was struck by lightning during today’s storm. The strike beneath a gutter at rear side of the house charred a 3-foot section of siding and damaged the home’s electrical system as well as several appliances. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Heavy rains accompanied by a tornado warning hit southwest Connecticut including the Westport area this afternoon
A home in the Coleytown area was hit by lightning and one man was slightly injured when his car ran off a road and hit a tree during the downpour, officials said.
The Westport Fire Department said it responded to 13 storm-related calls, including the lighting strike of a home at 27 Warnock Drive.
The strike caused damage to the home’s exterior siding, electrical system and appliances, said Assistant Chief Jonathan Gottfied.
Tornado Warning Issued for Southwest Fairfield County
The National Weather Service today issued a tornado warning for southwest Fairfield County.
An advisory said radar at 3:49 p.m. indicated a severe thunderstorm capable of producing a tornado 15 miles west of New Canaan or near White Plains moving east at 25 miles per hour.
The storm will be near New Canaan by 4:25 p.m., Norwalk, Wilton and nine miles south of Georgetown by 4:30 p.m.
The storm has already produced a waterspout near the Tappan Zee Bridge, an advisory said.
Market Officials Give Tips on Parking
While the traffic may seem bad at the Westport Farmers Market, market officials say there is plenty of parking spaces and are giving advice on how to best visit.
Westport’s farmers market takes place each Thursday at 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Westport Country Playhouse parking lot. Market officials have provided a map of where to park for the market.
Katherine Dyer, market manager, said it may seem parking is scarce but so far spaces have never run out.
“There is a quick turnover as shoppers come and go,” she said. “What’s important is that customers be considerate and not drive against traffic and the natural flow of the lot—it only creates congestion and frustration.”
Parking is also available at Saugatuck Congregational Church, she said. There is a path that skirts the park behind the church and leads right to the market.
Compo Beach Opened
Westport-Weston Health District officials opened Compo Beach at about 3 p.m. today.
They received tests back from state officials at about that time that showed no problems with the water.
Health officials closed Compo Beach to swimming on Tuesday after a malfunction at the town’s Sewage Treatment Plant.Page 1090 of 1324 pages
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