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Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Granger at the Movies: ‘The Lost City of Z,’ ‘The Promise’

By Susan Granger

Special to WestportNow

Based on David Grann’s 2009 nonfiction best-seller, “The Lost City of Z” chronicles the incredible adventures of a status-seeking British soldier, Col. Percy Fawcett (Charlie Hunnam), who explored the Amazon River a full century ago. Image

Dispatched in 1906 by the aristocratic Royal Geographical Society, Fawcett’s mission is to map the dangerous, uncharted realms of eastern Bolivia, where it borders with Brazil.

Thrashing through the South American rain forest with his Army comrades, Henry Costin (Robert Pattinson) and Arthur Manley (Edward Ashley), plus requisite guides and porters, he discovers not only the source of the Rio Verde River but also tribal pottery and carvings, indications of an ancient city and long-lost civilization hidden somewhere in the dense foliage - And he is determined to find it.

Driven by this mystical, near-maniacal obsession, Fawcett learns a great deal about anthropology and endures an excruciating second expedition in 1911, accompanied by another explorer, scornful James Murray (Angus Macfadyen), who becomes a dangerous liability.

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04/25/17 01:25 PM Comments () • Permalink

Panel Rejects Malloy Initiatives in $41 Billion, 2-Year Budget Plan

By Keith M. Phaneuf and Jacqueline Rabe Thomas

The General Assembly’s Appropriations Committee was expected to recommend a $41 billion budget today for the next two fiscal years that rejects proposals to substantially redistribute local education aid and to shift teacher pension costs onto municipalities.

The plan, which would boost General Fund spending by 5.2 percent next fiscal year and by 1.8 percent in 2018-19, also positions the legislature to maintain the exemption for nonprofit hospitals’ real property from municipal taxation.

Democratic legislators, who hold a one-vote edge on the Appropriations Committee, also rely on labor concessions worth $1.57 billion over the biennium — the same savings target Malloy built into his two-year budget proposal in February.

The Democratic plan, which sources said is not expected to draw any Republican support on the Appropriations Committee, spends $403 million over two years more than Malloy proposed, topping his bottom line by $199 million in the first year and by $204 million the second.

More "Panel Rejects Malloy Initiatives in $41 Billion, 2-Year Budget Plan"


04/25/17 12:52 PM Comments () • Permalink

Drug Take Back Day Saturday

The Westport Police Department, in cooperation with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), will conduct Drug Take Back Day on Saturday to remove potentially dangerous, controlled substances from homes, police announced.

Officers will be at the Westport Weston Health District, 180 Bayberry Lane, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., so residents can bring expired, unused or unwanted medications for disposal, said Lt. Jillian Cabana.  Needles and sharps, however, will not be accepted.

Cabana said that the service is free and anonymous, “no questions asked.”

The national collaborative effort offers an opportunity for the public to surrender pharmaceutical controlled substances and other medications to law enforcement officers for destruction, she said.

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04/25/17 12:47 PM Comments () • Permalink

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - Exhibit: “The Danbury Raid”
10 a.m. - 5 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - “Main Street to Madison Avenue”
2 p.m. - Westport Library - Oscar-worthy Film Series: “Elle”
2 p.m. - 5 p.m. - Town Hall - Westport Tree Board Arbor Day Sapling Giveaway
4 p.m. - 6 p.m. - Westport Library - Drop-in Tech Help
4 p.m. - Earthplace - Adventures in Animal Hall
7 p.m. - Westport Library - Workshop with Riverwalk Hallway Exhibit Artist Leona Frank
7:30 p.m. - Town Hall Room 309 - Architectural Review Board
7:30 p.m. - Town Hall Room 102 - RTM Parks & Recreation Committee
7:30 p.m. - Town Hall Room 201/201A - Zoning Board of Appeals (live coverage cable channel 79, AT&T channel 99, and
8 p.m. - Town Hall Auditorium - RTM Finance & Education Committees

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar


04/25/17 12:05 AM Comments Closed • Permalink

Monday, April 24, 2017

Curtain Call for ‘Lunch Hour’ Reading Image
The cast of “Lunch Hour” takes a bow tonight at the Westport Country Playhouse following the script-in-hand reading of the play written by the late Jean Kerr. Pictured (l-r) : Mark Shanahan, Kate MacCluggage, James Waterston, Rebekah Brockman, John Skelley and Peter Chenot, program directions. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


04/24/17 10:45 PM Comments () • Permalink

Panel Focuses on Teen Domestic Violence

By James Lomuscio

The film clips were quick but deeply disturbing. All choreographed control and abuse under the banner of love, an abuse on track toward becoming teen domestic violence. Image
Among participants in the discussion were (-r) Westport Police Lt. Jillian Cabana, Alison Roach, Domestic Violence Crisis Center (DVCC) attorney advocate, and Nicole Dodge, DVCC advocate. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for

Produced by the One Love Foundation, the clips shown tonight in the Westport Library’s McManus Room dramatized the manipulation and coercion present in troubled teen relationships.

Using the line “Because I love you,” the actors justify jealousy over a lab partner, incessant phone calls and texts, and isolating a girlfriend or boyfriend from friends and even family.

In one scene a young man even threatens to smash his girlfriend’s phone because she did not answer.

More "Panel Focuses on Teen Domestic Violence"


04/24/17 09:45 PM Comments () • Permalink

Special Report: Housing Shift — More Apartments, Fewer McMansions

By Tom Condon

Simsbury has two multi-family housing developments in the works that will provide 169 new apartments, of which 36 units will be affordable. Last year a complex opened in Brookfield with 72 apartments, all affordable. A 52-unit complex in Essex will have 16 affordable apartments. Image
The 181-unit Garden Homes development in Simsbury, now under construction, will have 18 affordable apartments. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Tom Condon for

These and similar projects represent two major — if not seismic — shifts in the state’s housing market: away from the heavy focus on larger single-family homes, and toward more multi-family and affordable housing.

In the heady decades after World War II, developers blanketed the countryside with detached single-family houses, small and large, capes and ranches to huge McMansions.

Now the market has changed. Families are smaller. Young people aren’t as interested in owning a suburban home, and are happy, at least for a time, to rent an apartment in a walkable and otherwise interesting city or town center. Many Boomers looking to downsize seek similar situations.

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04/24/17 05:38 PM Comments () • Permalink

Rehearsing for Script in Hand Reading Tonight Image
Actors paused today during a rehearsal for tonight’s Westport Country Playhouse Script In Hand reading of “Lunch Hour,” a romantic comedy by Jean Kerr. The play is set in a Long Island beach house in 1980 when two female friends discover their spouses are having an affair. They counter by having an affair of their own. The reading will be directed by Anne Keefe, Playhouse associate artist and curator of the play reading series. Pictured: (seated, l-r)  Mark Shanahan, Kate MacCluggage, James Waterston, Rebekah Brockman and John Skelley; (standing) Anne Keefe, Peter Chenot, stage directions, and Ann Sheffer, sponsor. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


04/24/17 04:50 PM Comments () • Permalink

Herbicide Spill Brings Fire, DEEP Response Image
An accidental spill of a herbicide or pesticide today at Westport’s Birchwood Country Club brought a response from Westport firefighters and officials of the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP). Firefighters built a dam in a stream at the edge of the club’s property below the golf course just above Riverside Avenue. Assistant Fire Chief Michael Kronick said a considerable amount of material was involved and that the cleanup would likely be an extended one. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


04/24/17 02:45 PM Comments () • Permalink

Herbicide Spill Reported at Birchwood Country Club

Westport firefighters, including the hazmat unit, today responded to a reported herbicide spill at Birchwood Country Club. Image
Westport firefighters today at the site of a herbicide spill off of Riverside Avenue at the Birchwood Country Club. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

The herbicide concentrate was reported to have spilled into a storm drain at the edge of the club golf course above Riverside Avenue. Firefighters built a dike to try to stem the flow of the stream.

There was no immediate indication the concentrate had crossed Riverside Avenue and into the Saugatuck River, fire officials said.

Firefighters notified the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, which sent emergency responders to the scene.

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04/24/17 02:39 PM Comments () • Permalink

WestportNow Teardown of the Day: 6 Hunting Lane Image
An application for a permit to demolish the house at Westport’s 6 Hunting Lane, near Bulkley Avenue North, is in process. Built in 1946, the 1-1/4 story cape has 1,190-square feet and is situated on a .25-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


04/24/17 02:34 PM Comments () • Permalink

Playhouse Seeks Extras for Season Opener

The Westport Country Playhouse said today it is seeking non-Equity extras, male and female, all ethnicities and types, ages 25-70, to play tourists in the season opening production of Peter Shaffer’s comedy “Lettice & Lovage.” Image

It said the play, directed by Mark Lamos, Playhouse artistic director, needs extras who must be available for rehearsals and performances beginning Friday, May 26 and ending Sunday, June 18.

Extras will appear in the first 10 minutes of the production and “play a range of feelings that go from bored-to-death to interested and finally elated as Lettice Douffet, played by Patricia Conolly, evolves from their inexperienced tour guide to a theatrical tour de force,” an announcement said.

Also in the cast are Playhouse alumni Mia Dillon and Sarah Manton, who play Charlotte Schoen and Ms. Framer, respectively, and Paxton Whitehead, who will reprise his role of Mr. Bardolph from the original Broadway production.

More "Playhouse Seeks Extras for Season Opener"


04/24/17 01:11 PM Comments () • Permalink

Truck Pulls Down Wires on Greens Farms Road

A moving truck pulled down utility wires today on Greens Farms Road at Hillspoint Road, police said.

The incident caused closure of Greens Farms Road from Hillspoint Road to Hales Road.

The moving van was stopped by state police on I-95 in Bridgeport and information obtained from the driver, according to state police.

No injuries were reported as a result of the incident.


04/24/17 12:57 PM Comments () • Permalink

Former Police Chief, 80, Escapes Fire Through Window

Former Westport Police Chief Ronald F. Malone escaped a fast moving early morning house fire today through a first floor window with the help of first arriving police officers. Image
Ron Malone: window escape. Lynn U. Miller/WN photo Image
The scene at 169 Cross Highway. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) photo

“I was heating up Pop Tarts and the next thing I knew the kitchen was on fire,” said Malone, 80, as he was treated for cuts and bruises before being taken by Westport EMS to Norwalk Hospital for observation.

Firefighters managed to save two dogs in the house at 189 Cross Highway, which was heavily damaged.

Malone called 911 at about 6 a.m. and said he was trapped in the one-story, 1955-built cape, according to Assistant Chief Mike Kronick.

More "Former Police Chief, 80, Escapes Fire Through Window"


04/24/17 11:05 AM Comments () • Permalink

Rescued From House Fire Image
UPDATE Firefighters rescued two dogs from a house fire today at 189 Cross Highway. The lone occupant, Ronald F. Malone, 80, a former police chief and former member of the Representative Town Meeting (RTM), managed to escape through a first floor window with the help of first arriving police officers. He was taken to Norwalk Hospital with non life-threatening injuries, said Assistant Chief Mike Kronick. Malone retired in 1990 after six years as chief. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Westport Fire Department photo


04/24/17 10:55 AM Comments () • Permalink

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Curtain Call for ‘Lunch Hour’ Reading

Rehearsing for Script in Hand Reading Tonight


Panel Rejects Malloy Initiatives in $41 Billion, 2-Year Budget Plan

Comings & Goings: Layla’s Falafel to Post Road East


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Panel Focuses on Teen Domestic Violence

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Panel Rejects Malloy Initiatives in $41 Billion, 2-Year Budget Plan

‘Raising Children in Trump’s America’ Subject of Tuesday Panel Discussion

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Special Report: Housing Shift — More Apartments, Fewer McMansions

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