Tuesday, April 25, 2006
Westport’s state senator voted against legislation that would ban sugary drinks in schools, and the town’s schools superintendent opposes the bill.
Last week, the state Senate passed legislation that would ban soda and sports drinks in school vending machines. They would have to be replaced by drinks like milk and 100 percent juice drinks.
An exception would allow the sugary drinks to be sold after school or at weekend concession stands.
Schools Superintendent Elliott Landon said soda is not sold at the elementary and middle schools in Westport, and the vending machines are turned off at the high school during school hours.
Volunteers drill and measure one of the segments of what will be the new Compo Beach Playground. The community build of the playground kicked off today and will go through Sunday. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Jennifer Connic for WestportNow.com
Work on construction of the new playground at Westport’s Compo Beach got underway in earnest today. Teams of volunteers will take part in the community build through Sunday. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Actor James Earl Jones (c) shares a laugh with Director Leonard Foglia and Westport Country Playhouse Executive Director Alison Harris during a press conference today. Jones will be starring as Thurgood Marshall in the production of “Thurgood,” which opens on Sunday at the playhouse. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Emily Hamilton Laux for WestportNow.com
James Earl Jones says he wants to keep former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall alive and humanize him for people.
He is preparing to star as the civil rights activist during a run of “Thurgood” at the Westport Country Playhouse, which opens on Sunday and runs through May 21. Today, the playhouse held a press conference with Jones and Director Leonard Foglia.
“You can’t change people’s minds, but you can change how they feel,” Jones said. “I have no agenda going into this. I am most excited about the school groups performances. They have blank slates.”
Jones said in preparing for the part he was most impressed with Marshall’s ability to make peace and keep in touch with real human beings.
An artist rendering shows what the terraced hill will be like at Staples’ Albie Loeffler Field once completed. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed image
With three weeks left, the Staples High School soccer program in Westport is halfway toward its fundraising goal to “terrace the hill.”
Though Albie Loeffler Field is perhaps the finest site in Connecticut for watching high school soccer, fans must either stand, or sit on sharply sloping grass. The solution: comfortable terraced seating, built right into the hill.
Steps from the top will provide easy access, and the area will be landscaped to keep the natural beauty of the bowl intact.
A polished concrete structure will cost $50,000, while an upgraded granite version is more expensive.
11 a.m. – Town Hall Room 201 – Food Service Advisory Committee
7 p.m. – Town Hall Green Room – Board of Assessment Appeals
7:30 p.m. – Town Hall Auditorium – Zoning Board of Appeals
7:30 p.m. - Seabury Center - Conversation with Gene Wilder
7:30 p.m. - Westport Public Library - Technology Talk: Living in a “Flat” World
It’s four years away, but Connecticut Department of Transportation (CTDOT) officials came to Westport tonight to outline their $50 million plan to replace the century-old railroad bridge over the Saugatuck River.
A Connecticut Department of Transportation team briefed Westporters tonight on a $50 million plan to renovate the railroad bridge over the Saugatuck River. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
At a sparsely attended Town Hall meeting, the planners had good news and bad about the popular pedestrian bridge that runs alongside the railroad tracks from Ferry Lane East to Ferry Lane West.
The good news is that the walkway will be retained in the new design – something town officials had said was critical. The bad news is that the walkway will have to be shut down for the final two years of the planned four-year construction project set to begin in 2010.
“The new walkway will be 5 feet wide and have an 8-foot fence separating it from the tracks,” said Alim Baycora, a consulting engineer on the project. “And it will have safety gates that will close during a bridge opening.”
Felice Lesser showed video clips and gave a talk tonight at the Westport Public Library about how Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet” has been variously interpreted for ballet. It’s part of a series of events at the Westport Public Library this week celebrating William Shakespeare. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Monday, April 24, 2006
About 100 people attended a talk from author Jean Trounstine today at the Westport Public Library. The talk—which was part of a Y’s Women meeting—was on her success with women prisoners teaching writing and then going into play acting. She also showed a 10-minute segment of a Shakespeare play—“The Merchant of Venice”—with her students in all the roles and filming. The video was later shown to all the inmates. She wrote of all her experiences in the book, “Shakespeare Behind Bars: The Power of Drama in a Women’s Prison.” The talk was a part of a series on Shakespeare at the library this week. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Richard Blumenthal:Y’s Men speaker Thursday. Contributed photoAttorney General Richard Blumenthal will speak to the Y’s Men of Westport/Weston on Thursday.
His topic is “The Increasing Role and Responsibilities of State Attorneys General.”
The meeting begins at 10 a.m. at the Saugatuck Congregational Church, 245 Post Road East.
First elected in 1990, Blumenthal, a Greenwich resident, is serving an unprecedented fourth term as the state’s attorney general.
The Westport Police Department is going digital in an effort to determine what residents believe to be the most serious traffic safety problems in town.
According to Police Lt. Dale E. Call, the purpose of the survey is to gather input from residents on what they feel are the most serious and frequent traffic safety issues they face while driving in town.
The information received from the survey, combined with traffic accident data and other statistical information, will be used to determine future traffic enforcement initiatives by the department.
With Sunday’s flood waters gone, the cleanup has begun in Westport areas affected by the deluge. This was the scene in a yard on Richmondville Avenue that had been covered by water. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Pam Blackburn for WestportNow.com
11:30 a.m. - Westport Public Library - Shakespeare Behind Bars
7 p.m. – Town Hall Auditorium – ConnDOT Public Meeting re Railroad Bridge over Saugatuck River
7 p.m. – Town Hall Green Room – Board of Assessment Appeals
7:30 p.m. - Westport Public Library - Shakespeare in Ballet
8 p.m. – Town Hall Room 309 – RTM Parks & Recreation Committee
A woman was injured tonight when the car in which she was riding crashed into the side of Assumption Church on Burr Road. She was transported to Norwalk Hospital by Westport EMS. Police were seeking a second person in the vehicle who fled on foot. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
Flood waters today threatened crucial telephone equipment at the AT&T (formerly SBC) office on Westport’s Myrtle Avenue. The company called in extra personnel to help keep the water from reaching vital equipment in the basement while the Westport Fire Department provided pumps and additional manpower. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
Sunday, April 23, 2006
The normally quiet Dead Man’s Brook running along Westport’s Sconset Square and under Post Road East became more like a raging river after today’s heavy rains. Westport columnist, author, and soccer coach Dan Woog was among those who stopped by to take a look. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
An accident on I-95 in Norwalk near exit 16 today caused a backup that extended into Westport. No details of the accident were available. It was not known if today’s heavy rain was a contributing factor. Jeff Mayer for WestportNow.com
Among Westport homes flooded today was this one on Partrick Road. Longtime residents said the more than 5-inch rainfall was the heaviest in their memory. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Keith Price for WestportNow.com
In honor of William Shakespeare’s 442nd birthday, Peter Saccio, Shakespearean studies professor at Dartmouth University, was the centerpiece of a presentation that was the “kick-off” event today in a six-part series on the playwright at the Westport Public Library. In spite of the flooding and heavy rain, a large enthusiastic audience attended the presentation. There continues to be Shakespeare events each day this week, and a complete schedule can be found at the library’s Web site. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Record heavy rains pummeled the Westport area today, flooding roadways and basements and possibly contributing to a one-car accident that killed a 1-year-old baby on the Merritt Parkway in Westport.
Some ducks take to the outfield of the Compo Beach ballfield today as heavy rains hit the Westport area. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Stephen Rubin for WestportNow.com
Unofficial readings at Westport’s two middle schools showed 5.37 inches of rain had fallen since midnight. Bridgeport’s Sikorsky Airport reported a record 5.28 inches fell in a 24-hour period. The rain, which some longtime residents said was the heaviest in their memory, stopped by 4 p.m.
The Merritt Parkway accident occurred shortly before 8 a.m. just north of the Easton Road overpass near exit 42 in Westport. State police said a Chrysler minivan left the southbound roadway and crashed into a tree during a heavy rain.
Westport firefighters had to extricate the driver from the vehicle. The baby, who was riding in an infant seat behind the driver, was taken by Westport EMS to Norwalk Hospital where she was pronounced dead, officials said.
Westport firefighters attended to propane tanks at a Leslie Lane home this afternoon as the waters from Dead Man’s Brook pushed out of its banks. The tanks were used to heat a swimming pool. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Lauren Siegert for WestportNow.com