Bross Chingas Bross Real Estate, Riverside Realty, #1 in 2014
Westport Country Playhouse: Love and Money, July 21-August 8Westporters: Get your Tickets to the 8th Annual Blues, Views, and BBQ Festival
Jillian Klaff Homes: real hard facts for really smart moves. 203.858.2095. Westport, CT
 
Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Paddling Home

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Out with the outboard motor, in with the paddles. Several teens out for an evening on an inflatable skiff Tuesday were in for some exercise as their outboard motor appeared to stop working. They broke out the paddles and made it back to Ned Dimes Marina at Compo Beach just before dark (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Jaime Bairaktaris for WestportNow.com

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Wednesday, July 29, 2015


10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Howard Munce at 100: A Centennial Celebration”
10 a.m. - 5 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - “Eric Fischl”
10 a.m. - Westport Library - Level Up Village: Global Villagers TinkerShop
Noon - Westport Arts Center - Plean Air Painting with Judy Katz
2 p.m. and 8 p.m. - Westport Country Playhouse - “Love and Money”
6:30 p.m. - Westport Library - Reality Hackers Discussion Group
7 p.m. - Town Hall Auditorium - Conservation Commission Special Public Hearing (live coverage cable channel 79, AT&T channel 99, and westportct.gov)
7 p.m. - Westport Library - Open Meeting: Saugatuck Senior Co-op Talk
7 p.m. - Levitt Pavilion - Suzi Shelton

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar

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Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Few Surprises with DTC Nominations

By James Lomuscio

Tonight’s Democratic Town Committee (DTC) nominating convention for November’s elections went as expected with the slate announced Monday getting unanimous endorsements.

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Nominated Democratic candidates tonight include (l-r) Mark Mathias, Michael Gordon, both Board of Education; Paul Liebowitz, Planning and Zoning Commssion, Sherri Gordon and John Hartwell, Board of Finance. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

Board of Education Chairman Michael Gordon and member Mark Mathias, both incumbents, received resounding support after Mathias and Gordon nominated each other.

“He’s fiscally savvy, but he puts the needs of students first,” Mathias said of Gordon, adding that the one of the challenges the board will face this year is hiring a new superintendent for the first time in 17 years.

When Gordon nominated Mathias, who has already served three four-year terms, he said that his colleague “sets the bar high for everyone on the board.”

More "Few Surprises with DTC Nominations"

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Comings & Goings: Positano’s Opens at New Location

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Positano Ristorante, a mainstay at its Compo Mill location on Hillspoint Road for 15 years, has reopened at its new home next to the Westport Country Playhouse. The space was most recently occupied by The Dressing Room restaurant, the culinary venture of the late Paul Newman and chef Michel Nischan. Positano owner Giuseppe Scarpati (l) posed tonight with his son and co-chef Fernando. Postiano closed Dec. 31, 2014 at Old Mill and had hoped to open in February. (See WestportNow Dec. 31, 2014).(CLICK TO ENLARGE) Rachel Konstantin for WestportNow.com

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Comings & Goings: Old Town Hall Gets New Restaurant

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The basement of Westport’s Old Town Hall, 90 Post Road East next to Restoration Hardware, is getting a new restaurant tenant. A rathskeller-type bar and restaurant, Rothbard Ale + Larder, will open by mid-September, “before Oktoberfest,” according to co-owner Joe Farrell, He and head chef Adam Roytman also co-own Walrus + Carpenter, a barbecue restaurant in Bridgeport, which opened in 2013. Farrell, who grew up in Westport and now lives in Stratford, said the 65-seat space would feature German, Belgian and Austrian beers and wines and a full dining menu. Real estate developer and landlord Rob Haroun describes the eatery as having a “European beer garden” feeling. The space was formerly occupied by Tierra Restaurant, which opened in May 2014 and closed in March 2015 (see WestporttNow March 20, 2015). (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

07/28/15 06:49 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkDigg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Real Estate Report: Inventory Absorption Rate Higher

By Judy Szablak

There appears to be a positive blip in the Westport real estate market over the last few weeks.

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Featured Home: This home at 196 Hillspoint Road is listed at $2,199,000. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Photo courtesy of William Raveis- Westport.

Although next month is traditionally one of the slower months of the year due to planned vacations, and back to school preparations,  there is indeed more than a hint of promise for August.

Over time, statistics tell a very important story. Over the last few weeks, the absorption rate on inventory coming on the market and properties going under deposit has been higher than it has been for at least a few months.

A single-family market snapshot for the current period of today (less 90 days) shows that we have 10.26 months of inventory. The prior six to nine month report shows 13.06 months of supply. That’s a significant drop.

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The Rev. Pete Powell Tells Rotary Views on Religion

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The Rev. Peter Powell, former head of Westport’s Homes With Hope, today addressed the Westport Rotary Club on the future of organized religion Powell, a former Rotary president, said there has been a marked decline in church attendance in the United States and contrary to many people believing Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world, it is actually Christianity. Acknowledging he had numerous controversial beliefs, Powell, who sits on many church-related boards, outlined a number of them related to church and state: churches should pay property taxes, religious holidays should not be federal holidays, there should be no chaplains in the military, clergy should not be exempt from taxes, and clergy should not perform as an officer of the state, signing marriage certificates, for example, and “under God” should be removed from the Pledge of Allegiance. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

07/28/15 03:04 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkDigg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

WestportNow Teardown of the Day: 6 Burnham Hill

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An application for a permit to demolish the house at Westport’s 11 Burnham Hill, in the Compo Beach section, is in process. Built in 1954, the two-story colonial has 3,577-square feet, is situated on a .4-acre property and changed hands last month for $1,118,700. Because the house was built more than 50 years ago, the application will be reviewed by the Westport Historic District Commission. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

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Birds, Boats, and Beauty

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After Monday morning’s rain, the sun came out and Westport’s Compo Beach was another summer day to savor. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Mark Molesworth for WestportNow.com

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Tuesday, July 28, 2015


8:30 a.m. - Town Hall Room 309 - Village District Steering Committee
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Howard Munce at 100: A Centennial Celebration”
10 a.m. - 5 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - “Eric Fischl”
10 a.m. - Westport Library - Level Up Village: Global Villagers TinkerShop
4 p.m. - 6 p.m. - Westport Library - Drop-in Tech Help
5 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. - CES Playground - Coleytown Elementary School Incoming Kindergarten Meet-up
6 p.m. - Westport Library - Critical Management Skills: Identify Employee Strengths to Assemble Dream Team
7 p.m. - Levitt Pavilion - Treehouse Comedy Club I
7 p.m. - Westport Country Playhouse - “Love and Money”
7:30 p.m. - Town Hall Room 309 - Architectural Review Board
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, July 27, 2015

Ed Board Picks Search Firm for Landon Replacement

The Westport Board of Education tonight approved the hiring of search firm Hazard, Young and Attea (HYA) to help replace Schools Superintendent Elliott Landon set to retire next June after 17 years.

According to a school board statement, Hazard, Young and Attea is the Executive Search Division of ECRA Group, Inc. “with an extensive history of success in working with boards in high-performing districts throughout the Northeast and across the country to find candidates who will provide long-term leadership .”

School officials said that of the 328 superintendents hired with HYA’s assistance since 2000, 90 percent led their districts for several years.

“The selection of a new superintendent is the most important responsibility of any Board of Education,” said Michael Gordon, school board chairman.

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Dems List Candidates Prior to Tuesday’s Nominations

By James Lomuscio

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John Hartwell: DTC head will seek finance seat. Contributed photo

John Hartwell, chairman of Westport’s Democratic Town Committee (DTC), tonight announced the slate of November’s candidates that the party plans to nominate for town boards and commissions Tuesday at 8 p.m. in Room 201 at Town Hall.

“There will be no surprises,” he said about the expected nominations following tonight’s announcement.

The party will put up Hartwell and Sheri Gordon, currently a member of the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) for the Board of Finance.

“I think there are a lot of interesting and important things going on right now, including Downtown Steering Committee’s Downtown Master Plan and the transportation initiative to get more people to use public transportation,” Hartwell said about his decision to run.

More "Dems List Candidates Prior to Tuesday’s Nominations"

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Another Black Bear Sighting

Westport police tonight reported another black bear sighting, this one on Sunnyside Lane, off of Meeker Road between Bayberry Lane and Sturges Highway.

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The sighting was on Sunnyside Lane off Meeker Road between Sturges Highway and Bayberry Lane. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Google Map graphic

The report followed by three days a black bear appearing on the back deck of a home on Charcoal Hill Commons, less than a mile from tonight’s sighting. (See WestportNow July 24, 2015) It was followed by two other bear sightings in the area.

“This evening the Westport Police Department received a report of a Black Bear sighting in the area of Sunnyside Lane in a wooded area behind a residence,” a police news release said.

“According to the report the observer lost sight of the bear as it traveled through the woods. This sighting is not far from the area in which a black bear was seen over the past few days.”

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Talking Transportation: The Secrets of E-ZPass

By Jim Cameron

Special to WestportNow

As a college student in the early 1970s, I had a summer job as a toll collector on the Tappan Zee Bridge.

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Boring job but great pay. But it was clear, even then, that toll collection would become automated, at first with special lanes with those baskets you’d throw your change into (assuming you had the correct change).

By the early ‘80s, New York and Pennsylvania toll authorities (which between them make up two-thirds of the nation’s $3 billion a year tolling industry) began experimenting with electronic toll tags, as much to reduce congestion at booths as to replace human collectors.

But it was Oklahoma that introduced the first electronic toll system, The Pikepass in 1991.

More "Talking Transportation: The Secrets of E-ZPass"

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WestportNow Teardown of the Day: 11 Old Mill Road

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An application for a permit to demolish the house at Westport’s 11 Old Mill Road, in the Old Mill section of Compo Beach, is in process. Built in 1962, the two-story conventional has 1,436-square feet and is situated on a .1-acre property. Because the house was built more than 50 years ago, the application will be reviewed by the Westport Historic District Commission. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

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Day is Done

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Entrants in a Westport Cedar Point Yacht Club regatta race return home today.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Irene Penny for WestportNow.com

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Malloy: New Haven Line Now Has All New Cars

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Gov. Dannel P. Malloy today used the platform of Union Station in New Haven to announce that the New Haven Line has totally replaced its old rail cars with the new modern M8 cars. The $1.2 billion project began in 2006 and 405 cars have been delivered, he said. Westporter John Hartwell (l), vice chair of the Connecticut Rail Commuter Council, joined the governor for the announcement. “We are thrilled with these cars and that there is a major transformation of the system under way,” he said. Contributed photo

07/27/15 04:09 PM Comments (2) • PermalinkDigg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Town to Establish Commission for Disabled

Westport First Selectman Jim Marpe said today that he is working to establish a establish a Commission on People with Disabilities, “which will move beyond the requirements of the ADA and help those with disabilities participate more fully in community life.”

An estimated 10 to 15 percent of the town’s population reports having a disability, he said.

Marpe made the announcement on the today’s 25th anniversary of the signing of the American with Disabilities Act (ADA).

He said the planned commission aims to ensure that Westport “is a town where people with disabilities have the opportunity to enjoy full and equal access to lives of independence, productivity, inclusion and self-determination.”

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Rainy Monday But Work Goes On

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Today’s morning intermittent rain did not stop work on the Bedford Square development in Westport’s downtown. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Bob Eckman for WestportNow.com

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Spotted on Sherwood Mill Pond

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A Great Egret spotted on Westport’s Sherwood Mill Pond.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Mark Molesworth for WestportNow.com

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Monday, July 27, 2015


9:30 a.m. - Town Hall Room 309 - Board of Finance Audit Subcommittee
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Howard Munce at 100: A Centennial Celebration”
10 a.m. - 5 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - “Eric Fischl”
10 a.m. - Westport Library - Level Up Village: Global Villagers TinkerShop

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar

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Sunday, July 26, 2015

Incendio Entertains at Levitt

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The veteran Los Angeles-based songwriter/musicians collectively known as Incendio returned to the Westport Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts tonight. It was the fifth appearance at the Levitt for the group, which plays what has been described as Latin guitar fusion music, combing polyrhythmic swirl of multiple Latin American music forms (boleros, cumbias, salsa, tango, mambo and the indigenous Peruvian valses criollos) with Indian, Arabic and Celtic flavors and a touch of jazz. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

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Proud Champs

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The Westport Little League girls softball 10-under all stars tonight won the divisional tournament, defeating Darien 8-2 in Orange. Westport will play Shelton in the sectional championship game on Thursday at 5:30 p.m. at Old Tavern Park in Orange for a chance to advance to the states. Pictured (l-r, top row)  Coach Jeff Schwartz and Manager Jeff Green (middle row) Elle DesMarteau, Maddie Hill, Allyson Currier, Niamh Dougherty, Allison Schwartz, Ava Vincini, Grace Alfero, Dylan Halky, Natasha Taubenheim (bottom row) Gabby Lantier and Katie McGillion-Moore. Missing from photo: Coach Doug Bernstein, Sydelle Bernstein, and Amanda Green. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

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Insights on Playwriting from A. R. Gurney

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Playwright A. R. Gurney (c) today spoke about his world premiere comedy “Love & Money” at the Westport Country Playhouse’s Sunday symposium following a matinee performance. The conversation with director Mark Lamos (r), who is the Playhouse artistic director, was moderated by David Kennedy, Playhouse associate artistic director. Both Gurney and Lamos said the 80-minute play is a “work in progress.” Running at the Playhouse through Aug. 8, the co-production with New York’s Tony Award-winning Signature Theatre will officially open there in late August. Gurney said he has already made changes since the first Playhouse performance on Tuesday. “This makes it hard for the actors who have memorized their lines and performed them to have to change what they have memorized,” Gurney said.  “This is not unusual with a new play. As the actors perform, you may see something that needs changing. I want to do that. I don’t want anyone else doing the changing.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com

07/26/15 06:41 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkDigg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Touchy-Feely at Sherwood Nature Center

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At Westport’s Sherwood Island State Park Nature Center today, intern Julia Kempner, a senior at Staples High School, gives Joanne Martins, visiting from Pennsylvania, a chance to touch a corn snake. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Julia Mally for WestportNow.com

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