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Thursday, March 26, 2015



Thursday, March 26, 2015

Comings & Goings: Mario’s Place Changing Ownership Image
Westport’s iconic Mario’s Place, 36 Railroad Place, is changing ownership and will change names. The new owners, Vicente and Nuve Siguenza, say they expect the transfer to become final in mid-April. They are owners of Cava in New Canaan, Harvest in Greenwich and New Haven, Scena in Darien and 55 Degrees in Fairfield. Vicente Siguenza said the Westport location will continue to operate as Mario’s Place for an unspecified period and will then change its name to Harvest, a farm-to-table restaurant concept. An employee at Mario’s said the staff had been notified on Monday that the business was being sold. Frank ”Tiger” DeMace, co-founder of the restaurant with the late Mario Sacco, died in 2012 at age 78. (See WestportNow July 26, 2012) The DeMace family will retain ownership of the property and the Siguenzas will operate their restaurant under a long-term lease. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Posted 01:43 PM
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Real Estate Report: Now is Prime Time to Sell or Buy

By Judy Szablak

The message is clear for the real estate market in Westport—now is a prime opportunity to sell a home and a great time to buy. Image
Featured Home: This home at 17 Burnham Hill is listed at $4.7 million.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Photo courtesy of Coldwell Banker Westport-Riverside

Sellers should ensure that their property stands out from the competition with proper price positioning and home presentation, and buyers need to be ready for all opportunities.

When selling your home, arriving at an appropriate price has little to do with how much proceeds one would like to have when all is said and done.

Rather, it is based upon what the most similar-type properties have sold for in recent months, as these comparables are also what bank appraisers utilize to determine value on the bank’s behalf for the buyer. When the home is priced correctly for the location and its condition, it will sell. 

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Posted 12:13 PM
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Checking Out ‘Golden Shadows’ Image
Members of the Representative Town Meeting (RTM) today toured the building on the town-owned Baron’s South property known as “Golden Shadows.” Two local preservationists have petitioned the RTM to designate it a Local Historic Landmark Property, and members will be discussing it at a future meeting. It was home to the late Austrian Baron Walter Langer Von Langendorff and his British wife Evelyn Diane, founders in the mid-1940s of Evyan Perfumes. The town purchased the property in 1999 for $7 million. Pictured are Eileen Lavigne Flug (l), RTM moderator, with members Jay Keenan and Neil Phillips. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Posted 11:26 AM
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Baron’s South Committee Discusses Next Steps Image
Westport’s Baron’s South Committee planning senior housing on the town-owned property met today to consider its next steps following a Planning and Zoning Commission approval of a map amendment making the 22-acre Baron’s South open space. The Representative Town Meeting (RTM) may be asked to reverse the action, which it can do with a two-thirds vote. Some P&Z members left open the possibility of approving a smaller project. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Posted 10:09 AM
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Fog on Main Image
Westport Main Street was fog-covered today as an early morning fog settled over the area.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Bob Eckman for

Posted 08:03 AM
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Susan Granger At the Movies: ‘Trial of Viviane Amsalem,’ ‘Marigold Hotel,’ ‘Insurgent’

By Susan Granger

For Orthodox Jews in Israel, divorce is decided not in civil court but by a triumvirate of rabbinical judges. Image

In order for a wife to obtain one, her husband must consent – and “The Trial of Viviane Amsalem” vividly illustrates this patriarchal tyranny.

After bearing four children and enduring decades of an unhappy marriage, Viviane (Ronit Elkabetz) has left her home and moved in with her brother and overbearing sister-in-law.

For three years, she has attempted to obtain a “gett,” which is permission to dissolve her marriage, but her taciturn, religiously devout husband Elisha (Simon Abkarian) steadfastly refuses.

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Posted 08:00 AM
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Morning Fog Disrupts Commuter Car Count Image
New York-bound passengers at Metro-North’s Westport station aiming for the last train car, the quiet car, usually count cars as the 7:40 a.m. train rounds a curve, watching for an old or new train. A new train could be eight or 10 cars. Eight means overcrowding and standing room only. (It happened once this week). Old trains (at least twice this week), tend to be just unpleasant, according to Westport commuter Allan Siegert. Well, they couldn’t count cars today because of the fog. It turned out to be 10 cars and, surprisingly, also a new train. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Allan Siegert for

Posted 07:38 AM
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Thursday,  March 26, 2015

8:30 a.m. - Town Hall Room 201/201A - Baron’s South Committee Special Meeting
9:30 a.m. - Westport Library - Longshore Ladies 9 Hole Golf Association Pre-season Coffee
10 a.m. - Earthplace - Sasco Brook Pollution Abatement Committee
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Saugatuck @Work” & “Framing Saugatuck”
1:30 p.m. - Westport Library - Advanced Writing Class
3 p.m. - Town Hall Room 201 - Planning & Zoning Parking & Traffic Subcommittee
6:30 p.m. - Westport Library - Chess Club for Adults
7 p.m. - Westport Library - “The China Collectors,” Shareen Blair Brysac & Karl E. Meyer
7 p.m. - Coleytown Middle School - Coleytown Company: “The Addams Family”
7:30 p.m. - Town Hall Room 309 - RTM Finance Committee
7:30 p.m. - Westport Country Playhouse - Evening with Anna Raimondi

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar

Posted 12:05 AM
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Wednesday, March 25, 2015

New Long Lots Principal Appointed

The Westport Board of Education tonight approved the promotion of Jeffrey Golubchick to the position of principal of Long Lots Elementary School effective July 1, Superintendent of Schools Elliot Landon said. Image
Jeffrey Golubchick: current Saugatuck assistant principal. Contributed photo

Golubchick currently is assistant principal at Saugatuck Elementary School.  He replaces M. Rex Jones, principal since 2007.

Prior to joining Saugatuck, Golubchick had been director of elementary humanities at North Shore Schools in Sea Cliff, N.Y. and assistant principal at P.S. 29 in Cobble Hill, Brooklyn, N.Y. He began his career as a teacher in a student-diverse elementary school in New York City.

His educational background includes a BFA in printmaking and a BA in scenography from Washington University in St. Louis, Mo; an MFA in theater arts from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh; an MA in education from Hunter College in New York City; and, an MA in educational leadership from Brooklyn (N.Y.) College.

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Posted 09:35 PM
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Staples Advances to Moody Math Challenge Finals

A team of math students from Westport’s Staples High School is among finalists in this year’s Moody’s Mega Math (M3) Challenge.

Members advanced over the weekend in Philadelphia in the annual applied math contest that gives participants the opportunity to use mathematical modeling to come up with solutions to relevant everyday issues and a chance to win $20,000. Staples last won the competition in 2006. (See WestportNow April 7, 2006)

This year’s challenge was particularly relevant to high school seniors. They were asked to provide cost-benefit analyses of higher education.

Using publicly available data on college tuition rates, scholarships, and financing costs, participants created math models and wrote algorithms to determine the costs actually paid by individuals of various socioeconomic backgrounds, an announcement said.

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Posted 07:30 PM
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Special Tour Image
Members of the Saugatuck Elementary’s PTA were treated to a walking tour today of works from the Westport Permanent Art Collection (WSPAC) by Linda Gramatky Smith. She is the daughter of Hardie Gramatky, famed Westport watercolorist. SES is home to over 80 art pieces from the WSPAC, including several representing Gramatky’s much-loved children’s books. Gramatky Smith is pictured holding copies of “Little Toot” and “Nikos and the Sea God” beneath original art from those books. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

Posted 04:59 PM
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OK for New Two Car Per Family RR Parking Permit

Acting on what was described as a need and also a new way to increase income, the Westport Board of Selectmen today approved a new $450 annual railroad parking permit fee that would cover two cars in a household. Image
Beginning in June, railroad parking permit holders will be able to get permits for two cars per household for $450. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

The annual fee for one vehicle would remain at $325, well below neighboring communities, but now families will be able to have the ability to park either car at Westport stations, said Deputy Police Chief Foti Koskinas.

He told the board that the new system, which would allow only one car to be parked at the station at a time, meets something requested by a number of Westporters.

“People want to drive a nice car in summer and maybe a four-wheel drive in winter,” he said. It would also allow a second car to be used while the first car is being serviced, he said.

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Posted 01:54 PM
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WestportNow Teardown of the Day:  66 Turkey Hill Road South Image
An application for a permit to demolish the house at Westport’s 66 Turkey Hill Road South, near Clapboard Hill Road, is in process. Built in 1928, the two-story colonial has 3,120 square feet and is situated on a 1.19-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

Posted 11:51 AM
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Row, Row,  Row Your Boat Image
Rowers made for a colorful scene Tuesday on the Saugatuck River in Westport. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Mark Molesworth for

Posted 12:15 AM
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Wednesday, March 25, 2015

8:30 a.m. - Town Hall Room 307/309 - Board of Selectmen Public Hearing
9 a.m. - 2 p.m. - Westport Library - The Refinery: Entrepreneur Accelerator Program for Women-led Companies
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Saugatuck @Work” & “Framing Saugatuck”
10 a.m. - Town Hall Room 201 - UN Hospitality Committee
2:30 p.m. - Town Hall Room 309 - Tree Board
3 p.m. - Town Hall Room 201 - Planning & Zoning Parking & Traffic Subcommittee
6 p.m. - Westport Library - Business Special: Optimizing Your Mobile Devices & PC
6:30 p.m. - Staples Room 1025C - Board of Education Special Meeting

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar

Posted 12:05 AM
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