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Support Westport Country PlayhouseWestport Downtown Merchants Association: Caroling, Santa, Buggy Rides, December 13, 14, 20 & 21
Molly Lane, Exceptional Properties Specialist: Fairfield County Homes, 917-670-4842
 
Friday, December 19, 2014

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Real Estate Report: Negotiating the Deal

By Judy Szablak

Almost one in five homes in Westport closed at or above asking price during the last 12 months, according to our local Multiple Listing Service. However, that impressive statistic doesn’t mean that there were not any negotiations involved.

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Featured Home: This home at 11 West Branch Road is listed at $3,250,000. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Photo courtesy of Coldwell Banker Westport-Riverside

Almost 80 percent, or 341 out of the 422 single family homes and condos that sold last year involved some kind of give-and-take on price, and in all likelihood some concessions were made from either the buyer or seller on other terms as well. The one constant in all home sales is some form of negotiation, whether it’s terms, or price, or both.

The subtle or not-so-subtle manner of negotiations holds a lot of weight in determining whether a purchase or sale is agreed to with a particular buyer or seller.

You, or your agent must do your best to gauge the other party’s motivation, thoroughly understand their expectations, and deliver a response that fits within their emotional needs to the best of your ability. 

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12/16/14 09:41 AM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Police: Man Walking on Tracks Near Westport Station

UPDATE Westport police today pulled a man wrapped in a yellow blanket from the tracks after he was found walking near the Metro-North Westport railroad station.

Police managed to get the man off the northbound tracks and on to the bridge over the Saugatuck River, according to reports from the scene.

Police notified Metro-North of the incident shortly after it was reported at about 6:40 a.m. The incident apparently happened so quickly it did not disrupt train traffic.

The man, who was not identified, was not injured and was not charged, the reports said.

12/16/14 06:41 AM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

WN on the Scene: Havana, Cuba


WestportNow contributing photographer Phyllis Groner recently returned from a week-long visit to Cuba. She captured these images in and around Havana. Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com

12/16/14 12:15 AM Comments (1) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Tuesday, December 16, 2014


9 a.m. - Town Hall Room 307/309 - Board of Education Work Session Special Meeting
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Saugatuck @Work” & “Framing Saugatuck”
10 a.m. - 5 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - “Perception Illusion MAGIC”
2 p.m. - Westport Library - Writing From Life: A Memoir Writing Workshop
3 p.m. - Baron’s South (adjacent to Post Road) - School Bus Parking Task Force
3 p.m. - Westport Library - Upcycle Your Gift Wrapping!
4 p.m. - 6 p.m. - Westport Library - Drop-in Tech Help
4:15 p.m. - Town Hall Room 309 - Pension Investment Committee [ADDITION]
5 p.m. - 8 p.m. - Westport Library - Game Night - All Ages!
6:30 p.m. - front of old Y Building - Community Hanukkah Menorah Lighting
7:30 p.m. - Town Hall Room 309 - Green Task Force
7:30 p.m. - Town Hall Auditorium - Zoning Board of Appeals (live coverage cable channel 79, AT&T channel 99, and westportct.gov)

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar

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Monday, December 15, 2014

Celebrating ‘The Mousetrap’

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Some of the members of the cast of tonight’s Westport Country Playhouse script in hand play reading of the classic Agatha Christie play “The Mousetrap” get together with director Anne Keefe (2nd l) after the sold out show. They are (l-r) Robert Eli (Giles Ralston), Tom Beckett (Mr. Paravicini), Matthew Amendt (Detective Trotter) and Charles Socarides (Christopher Wren). (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

12/15/14 11:10 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Westport Village District Study Unveiled

By James Lomuscio

A Westport Village District study aimed at preserving the historic character of a swath of the downtown—while encouraging future development—was made public tonight at a presentation that drew about 20 persons to the Town Hall auditorium.

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P&Z Chairman Chip Stephens questions Stephen Cecil (r), principal of the Boston-based Cecil Group that completed a Westport Village District study. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) James Lomuscio for WestportNow.com

Stephen Cecil, principal of the Boston-based Cecil Group that conducted the 10-month study at the request of the Village District Stering Committee (VDSC), noted that a village district would establish new design standards for an overlay zone.

The zone including residential, business, retail and historic districts would stretch along the east bank of the Saugatuck River to Avery Place to Myrtle Avenue to Jesup Road and Imperial Avenue. Design standards applied to new construction, substantial reconstruction and rehabilitation and changes to facades visible from the public way and the Saugatuck River, Cecil said.

Francis Henkels, chairman of the VDSC, as well as the Historic District Commission (HDC), said that tonight’s presentation concluded the study funded by a $50,000 Vibrant Communities Initiative grant from the Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation. The next stop for the study, he said, would be the Planning and Zoning Commission (P&Z).

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Christmas Trees on a Hill

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Live Christmas trees are being sold on the hill on Westport’s Main Street across from Coffee an’ and Ace Hardware. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Lynn U. Miller for WestportNow.com

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Compo Marina Dredging

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Machines work late today at Compo Beach as part of the dredging and shoreline stabilization project at the Ned Dimes Marina. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Bob Eckman for WestportNow.com

12/15/14 05:49 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

DA: Westport Lawyer Stole More Than $600,000

UPDATE Saying that Westporter Stephen R. Krawitz’s actions undermine “the entire legal profession,” Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. today announced the indictment of the New York personal injury lawyer for allegedly stealing more than $600,000 in settlements from more than a dozen of his firm’s clients.

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Stephen Krawitz: indicted in Manhattan. Westport Police photo

Krawitz, 62, was arrested Friday at his Ludlow Road home by New York City detectives aided by Westport police. (See WestportNow Dec. 12, 2014) He later waived extradition to New York.

According to Vance, Krawitz is charged with with two counts of first-degree scheme to defraud, four counts of second-degree grand larceny and 15 counts of third-degree grand larceny.

“While these alleged crimes were taking place, one of Stephen Krawitz’s clients died of cancer without ever receiving the full settlement money rightfully owed to him,” said Vance.

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Getting Ready for Playhouse’s ‘Mousetrap’ Tonight

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The cast of tonight’s Westport Country Playhouse script in hand play reading of Agatha Christie’s “The Mousetrap” posed for a photo during today’s rehearsal. The play, directed by Anne Keefe, curator of the popular play reading series, opened in the West End of London in 1952 and has been running continuously since.  Pictured (l-r, front row) are Anne Keefe, Ann mcDonough, Geneva Carr, Heidi Armbruster, Mark Shanahan, and Chad Kinsman, stage directions; (back row) Charles Socarides, Tom Beckett, Matthew Amendt and Robert Eli. According to MIchael Ross, Playhouse managing director, the one-time performance is sold out. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

12/15/14 04:13 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Van Heerden Named Exec Director of Quick Center

Peter Van Heerden, outgoing executive director of the Westport Arts Center, today was named executive director of Fairfield University’s Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts.

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Peter Van Heerden: “a great opportunity.” Contributed photo

Kevin Lawlor, Fairfield University’s executive vice president and chief operating officer, said the appointment is effective Jan. 13. He called Van Heerden “a dynamic leader in the arts in both academic and large-scale nonprofit organizations.”

Van Heerden, a Westport resident, announced his resignation Saturday in an email to friends and patrons of the Arts Center. (See WestportNow Dec. 13, 2014) He has led the nonprofit since March 2011.

Located on the 200-acre campus of Fairfield University, the Quick Center is a multi-faceted facility that presents a wide variety of performances, lectures, and exhibits.  It opened in 1990 and will celebrate its 25th anniversary during the 2015-16 season. It houses the 740-seat Kelley Theater, 120-seat Wien Experimental Theater, and Thomas J. Walsh Art Gallery.

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12/15/14 03:27 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Metro-North to Start Sleep Testing Engineers

Metro-North Railroad today announced the selection of a health care company to provide medical testing and evaluation services for a seven-month pilot project focusing on obstructive sleep apnea and locomotive engineers.

A contract will go to the full board of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority for a vote on Wednesday, an announcement said.

The announcement was not good enough for U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), a longtime critic of Metro-North.

“This step is progress – an urgently needed safety system that I’ve repeatedly urged,” he said.  “The testing needs to be more than temporary, so I call on Metro-North to commit to and implement immediately a permanent, effective testing regimen as recommended by the National Transportation Safety Board.”

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Strathmore Lane House Gets Cleanup Extension

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A 30-day cleanup extension has been given to the owner of 1 Strathmore Lane near the intersection of Treadwell Avenue and Kings Highway South, according to Steve Smith, Westport blight enforcement officer. He said the extension beyond the deadline that expired Dec. 8 to perform the required property cleanup was made because there was a delay in notification to the owner. He said the house has been vacated for a long time and a bank is currently in the advanced stages of the foreclosure process. Smith said the board is reviewing three additional Westport properties for blight violations. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

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Despite Coverup, Minute Man in Christmas Spirit

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Despite being under cover during renovations and cleaning, Westport’s Minute Man statue at the Compo Beach Road nevertheless is in the Christmas spirit. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Lynn U. Miller for WestportNow.com

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Christmas Lights Under a Starry Sky

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The William F. Cribari Bridge shines bright Sunday night with Christmas lights under a starry sky. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Jaime Bairaktaris for WestportNow.com

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Monday, December 15, 2014


10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Saugatuck @Work” & “Framing Saugatuck”
10 a.m. - 5 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - “Perception Illusion MAGIC”
4 p.m. - Westport Library - Teen: Maker Mondays
7 p.m. - Westport Country Playhouse - Script in Hand Playreading, “The Mousetrap”
7 p.m. - Town Hall Auditorium - Village District Steering Committee
7 p.m. - Staples Cafeteria B - Board of Education (live coverage cable channel 78, AT&T channel 99, and www.westport.k12.ct.us)

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar

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Sunday, December 14, 2014

Holiday Concert at Historical Society

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The Westport Historical Society (WHS) today presented its ninth annual holiday concert featuring Mary Ann and Bill Hall and staff. More than 50 children of all ages and parents enjoyed interactive dancing and singing that accompanied the songs as well as the refreshments that followed the program. Proceeds from the program go to support the Music for Children and the year-round educational activities of the WHS. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com

12/14/14 05:31 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Reindeer Dance

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As part of today’s Westport Historical Society’s ninth annual holiday concert, students from Mary Ann Hall’s Music for Children and Beyond program took part in seasonal songs and interactive dancing and singing. Music for Children is a music appreciation school for infants, children and parents. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com

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Rehearsing for Unitarian Church Concert

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Minister of Music Ed Thompson, clarinet soloist Ruth Ahlers, and one of the Unitarian Church in Westport’s nine choirs rehearse the traditional Hanukkah song “Hanerot Halalu” prior to today’s holiday concert at the church where the choir performed the piece in honor of Hanukkah. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

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Good Shopping Weather

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Clear weather and temperatures in the 40s made for good holiday shopping today on Westport’s Main Street. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

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Now a Main Street Tradition

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A horse-drawn carriage makes its way down Westport’s Main Street today amid holiday shoppers. The Westport Downtown Merchants Association is sponsoring the free rides this weekend and next in what has become a seasonal tradition in recent years. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

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Hitching a Ride

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Visitors to Westport’s Main Street hitch a ride on a horse-drawn carriage compliments of the Westport Downtown Merchants Association. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

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Careful Balance

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A visitor to Westport’s downtown area today holds a coat in one hand and a purse, wallet, and leashes for three dogs in the other as she makes her way to a parking lot on Elm Street. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

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Busy Sunday at Post Office

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The second Sunday holiday opening of the Westport Post Office, 275 Post Road East in Playhouse Square, was a busy day today compared to last Sunday. The Westport facility is one of a number of post offices to open for four hours on the three Sundays leading up to Christmas Day from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. The last Sunday opening will be next week. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

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Masonic Lodge Makes Holiday Contributions

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Recipients of holiday donations from Westport’s Masonic Temple Lodge No. 65 pose with members and First Selectman Jim Marpe (l) today at the group’s annual Christmas party at 210 Post Road East. Past Master Richard Riggiano said the Lodge distributed more than $20,000 to 17 nonprofits in the Westport area, “the second largest amount we’ve ever distributed.” Freemasonry is the oldest and largest fraternal organization in the world. The group’s members are dedicated to good citizenship, contributing more than $1 billion each year to charities. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

12/14/14 02:24 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon
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