Wednesday, March 14, 2007
Wednesday, March 14, 2007
8 a.m. – Town Hall Room 102 – Maintenance Study Committee
10:30 a.m. – Town Hall Room 102 – International Hospitality Committee
4:15 p.m. – Town Hall Room 201 – School Building Committee Staples Subcommittee
5 p.m. – Town Hall Room 309 – Board of Selectmen (live coverage cable channel 79 and westportct.gov)
7 p.m. – Town Hall Room 201 – Board of Assessment Appeals
7:30 p.m. – Town Hall Room 309 – TEAM Westport Committee
7:30 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - Literature: Mark Schenker
“Selected Shorts” Winds Up Season at Playhouse
Performers and staff relaxed off stage in the Green Room prior to tonight’s readings of “Selected Shorts” at the Westport Country Playhouse. This one-time live taping performance is the fourth and final segment of the Arts in the House presentation series by the Westport Country Playhouse and the Westport Arts Center for airing on the “Symphony Space” program on National Public Radio. Pictured (l-r) are: Jodi Schoenbrun Carter, managing director of Westport Country Playhouse; Eileen Weisman, executive director of the Westport Arts Center; Jane Curtin; Chris Sarandon; Isaiah Sheffer, National Public Radio host for the “Symphony Space” program, and Joanna Gleason. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Tuesday, March 13, 2007
Library’s Winter Book Sale Starts Saturday
The Westport Public Library will hold its annual winter book sale on Saturday through Tuesday, March 20 in the McManus Room.
A banner above the library entrance alerts all to the forthcoming book sale. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Lynn U. Miller for WestportNow.com
Sale hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, 1-5 p.m. on Sunday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Monday and 9 a.m. to noon on Tuesday. Items are half price on Monday and for a donation on Tuesday.
There will be over 15,000 items for sale, and special this year is a small collection of comic books, vintage paperbacks and young adult books.
There is also a nearly complete run of the first 67 issues of the new Granta magazine, including the first 24 issues. Granta magazine, published quarterly in London, showcases new fiction, personal history, reportage, investigative journalism and documentary photography.
Turf Allows Other Field Improvements
The Westport Parks and Recreation Department is saving money because of new synthetic turf on two athletic fields, and the money will be going into upgrading the remaining grass fields.
The turf has been on the Staples High School Football Field and the Wakeman Farm soccer field for one season. It will be installed on the P.J. Romano Football Field at Saugatuck Elementary and the Ginny Parker Field Hockey Field at Staples this summer if funds are raised as anticipated.
Parks and Recreation Director Stuart McCarthy said the turf has saved his department money, and the Parks and Recreation Commission has recommended the funds should go back into helping maintain the other fields that remain natural grass.
The fields that will have the turf, he said, are the most heavily used fields that took the most time and money to maintain.
WestportNow Teardown of the Day: 152 North Ave.
Westport officials are reviewing an application to demolish the house at 152 North Ave. The 1,556-square-foot house was built in 1956, and it was sold in February for $742,000. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Westport Property Transfers March 5-9, 2007
Westport property transfers as reported by the Town Clerk’s office for the period March 5-9, 2007:
Thomas and Bernadette Vargas to James Carroll Cousins Jr., 230 Saugatuck Ave. Unit 8, $543,750
Matthew and Kristin K. Hoebermann to Donna L. Balise, 29 West Parish Road, $1,880,000
Regina Sender Levin to Robert H. Christine Nelson Smith Jr., 39 Turkey Hill Road South, $2,995,000
Daniel Marino to Anthony M. Sanfilippo, 261 Bayberry Lane, $2,045,000
Peter and Mary Bethany Zaffina to Peter Romano and Roblyn Leth, 19 Ketchum St., $800,000
Imperial Avenue Remains Closed
Imperial Avenue is closed today between Jesup Road and Post Road East as part Connecticut Light and Power’s project to bury 340-kilovolt power line, which will extend from Middletown to Norwalk. Local businesses, including the Westport Center for Senior Activities, remain open, and police are on site to direct traffic to them. Construction is expected to complete around March 23. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Highway Crash Snarls Morning Traffic
Traffic was tied up on I-95 traveling southbound this morning due to an accident between exits 18 and 19 in Westport. Westport firefighters closed two lanes of traffic for 30 minutes to attend to the three-car crash. Fire department officials said the four people involved in the accident were treated at the scene. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Kindergarten Orientation Sessions Scheduled
Parents can attend meetings on Monday, March 19 at the various Westport schools about their children who will be entering kindergarten this fall.
Meetings at all schools are scheduled for 9:30-10:30 a.m. Parents should attend the meeting at the school in their district.
To be eligible to enter kindergarten in September, children must turn five years old on or before Jan. 1, 2008.
This fall will be the first year of a new program for kindergartners to attend three full days of school with a shortened day on the remaining two days of the school week.
The warm weather that started last weekend continued on Monday in Westport, which was good for jumping on the rocks at Saugatuck Shores on Sunday. Temperatures are expected to reach as high as 60 degrees over the next few days. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Emily Hamilton Laux for WestportNow.com
Tuesday, March 13, 2007
8:30 a.m. – Town Hall Room 201 – Human Services Commission
7 p.m. – Town Hall Room 102 – Board of Assessment Appeals
7 p.m. – Town Hall Room 309 – Historic District Commission
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
7:30 p.m. - Westport Country Playhouse - “Selected Shorts”
Buddhist Monks Attract Standing Room Only Crowd
It was standing room only at the Westport Public Library for tonight’s Westport Reads Event about Buddhism. Buddhist monks explained their religion and then led a chant for world peace. This year’s book for Westport Reads is “The Soloist” by Mark Salzman, and there are a variety events this month around the book. For more information on events, visit the library’s Westport Reads Web site. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Joan Hume for WestportNow.com
WestportNow Teardown of the Day: 580 Riverside Ave.
Various Westport officials, including the Historic District Commission, are reviewing an application to demolish the 1929 building at 580 Riverside Ave. The HDC will review it during its meeting on Tuesday night. The demolition of the 3,100 square foot building is part of a plan to revitalize Saugatuck Center. The Planning and Zoning Commission approved the first phase of the plan last month (See WestportNow Feb. 8). (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Rupert Holmes Visits with Staples Players
Rupert Holmes, the three Tony Award-winning writer, composer and lyricist of “The Mystery of Edwin Drood,” visited with the Staples Players today at Westport’s Staples High School. The Players will be opening their version of the play on Friday with performances Saturday and the following Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Monday, March 12, 2007
HDC Supports Alternative 113 Cross Highway Plan
The owners of 113 Cross Highway hope they can modify a variance to save the former garage, which is the red building located behind the house. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
By Jennifer Connic
The Westport Historic District Commission today voted to support an alternative plan at 113 Cross Highway to save the former garage that was once Westport’s first filling station.
Kim and Michael Ronemus are seeking to amend the zoning variance they received last month to allow a home office in the former garage. In that variance, they received permission for a basement to house the mechanicals for the building, which includes a geothermal heating system.
Instead of moving the building and digging a basement, however, the Ronemuses want to add a second building, which is allowed under the restrictions under the zoning regulations, with a basement that would house the mechanicals.
It remains unclear if the Westport Zoning Board of Appeals will review the potential variance modification during a work session at the end of Tuesday night’s meeting. The ZBA also meets on March 27.
Library to Honor Halberstam
Journalist, author and distinguished social and political commentator David Halberstam will receive the ninth annual Westport Public Library Award at the library’s fundraising gala, Booked for the Evening.
David Halberstam: to be honored May 27. Contributed photo
The event will take place on Sunday, May 27 at 4-7 pm in the Library’s Great Hall.
The Westport Public Library Award honors those whose work furthers the goals of the library, which is to nurture a love of learning and to enhance our understanding of the world.
Previous recipients of the award have been Tom Brokaw, E.L.Doctorow, Calvin Trillin, Wendy Wasserstein, Pete Hamill, Martin Scorsese, Arthur Mitchell, and Doris Kearns Goodwin.
Alternative Plans Sought for 113 Cross Highway
The owners of the historically-designated former Cross Highway Garage, which is Westport’s first filling station, are seeking alternative plans to preserve the property rather than selling it to a developer who potentially could demolish it.
113 Cross Highway: new variance sought. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow file photo by Dave Matlow
Kim and Michael Ronemus have filed a request for a modification to their recently granted zoning variance for 113 Cross Highway to develop one of the accessory buildings into an office. The Historic District Commission will meet today at 11:30 a.m. to review and discuss alternatives other than demolishing the various buildings on the property.
The Zoning Board of Appeals last month approved one variance to allow a home office in one of the accessory buildings, which was necessary because Westport zoning regulations do not allow offices in outbuildings. The ZBA, however, rejected two other variance requests that would have expanded the building and allowed a guest room in a separate accessory building (See WestportNow Feb. 28).
Planning and Zoning Director Laurence Bradley said the new plan calls for a new building adjacent to the building that would be the office with a breezeway connecting the two. If the ZBA does not grant the requested modification to the variance for the basement, which would house the mechanicals, then the couple would have to make application for a new variance, he said.
Girl Scout Troop Collecting Books
Westport Girl Scout Junior Troop 269 is collecting new and gently used preschool and young adult books for the Connecticut Department of Welfare.
The collection is part of the troop’s Bronze Award project.
Children who visit the Connecticut Department of Welfare with their parents will be able to choose a book to take home.
People who want to donate books can drop them off at Westport Town Hall, Starbucks in Parker-Harding Plaza, Katzenberg Kafé on Main Street, the Westport Weston Family Y, Sherwood Diner and Saugatuck Post Office.
Monday, March 12, 2007
11:30 a.m. – Town Hall Room 201 – Special Historic District Commission Meeting
7 p.m. – Town Hall Room 309 – Board of Assessment Appeals
7:30 p.m. – Town Hall Room 201/201A – Parks & Recreation Commission
7:30 p.m. - Westport Public Library - Westport Reads: “Buddhism 101 - Definitions, Chants and Practices”
Y’s Women to Hear about Afghanistan
Michelle Fanzo: will speak about Afghanistan’s future. Contributed photoThe Y’s Women of Westport Weston will hear about the nonprofit organization Arzu in Afghanistan during its meeting on Monday at the Westport Weston Family Y.
Coffee and Conversation begins at 11 a.m. with the meeting starting promptly at 11:30 a.m.
Michelle Fanzo, vice president of international operations for the organization, will present an outlook on the country, which includes the need for more resources on stabilizing families.
Since early 2004, Arzu – meaning “Hope” in Dari - has worked in Afghanistan to expand market access for Afghan women carpet weavers and strengthen their role in communities. For more information, call Ann Lloyd at (203) 226-4145.
Enjoying the Warmer Weather
Stop & Shop Workers Approve New Contract
It will be shopping as usual at Westport’s Super Stop & Shop and company supermarkets throughout the region following approval today of a new contract by workers.
Union locals representing 43,000 Stop & Shop supermarket workers in southern New England, including about 5,000 in Connecticut, voted to approve a new three-year contract, averting a threatened strike that would have hit consumers in Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island.
The Quincy, Mass.-based grocery chain and the United Food and Commercial Workers went into protracted negotiations to resolve differences over health care contributions, pensions and wages.
Stop & Shop’s “goal during the negotiating process was to reach agreements with competitive terms that will allow us to remain the leading supermarket in the marketplace,” the grocery chain said in a statement. “We believe these new contracts meet our goal and provide significantly improved wages and benefits.”
Sunday, March 11, 2007
Out of the Fog
Page 1312 of 1681 pages
The ice is beginning to break up at the Ned Dimes Marina at Westport’s Compo Beach with the moderating temperatures. Today’s forecast calls for highs in the upper 40s. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
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