Tuesday, November 28, 2006
Police were on Westport’s Bridge Street Bridge Monday night directing traffic as workers installed Christmas lights on the bridge over the Saugatuck River. The bridge lights are sponsored each year by Westport’s Al’s Angels charity group. For more information, go to www.alsangels.org. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
10 a.m. – Town Hall Room 201 – Arts Advisory Committee
10 a.m. - 1 p.m. - Westport-Weston Health District - Flu Clinic
6:30 p.m. - Fairfield Warde High School - Staples football Class L semifinal playoff vs West Haven
7:30 p.m. – Town Hall Auditorium – Zoning Board of Appeals
7:45 p.m. – Town Hall Room 201/201A – RTM Education, Finance & Employee Compensation Committees
8:45 p.m. – Town Hall Room 201/201A – RTM Finance Committee
The Westport Board of Finance won’t officially review the proposed town budget until March and April, but it got a head start tonight in a meeting to discuss priorities, ideas and questions about the process.
Tonight the board discussed budget matters with First Selectman Gordon Joseloff, Selectwoman Shelly Kassen and Finance Director Donald Miklus. Next Monday the board will meet with the Board of Education on its budget priorities.
Jeffrey Mayer, finance board chairman, said the discussions about the need for an additional person at the Center for Senior Activities came up late during budget discussions, and it was too late to do anything.
“Now we can get those issues out early enough to do something,” he said.
Monday, November 27, 2006
Betty Sternberg, former state education commissioner, touched on a number of education issues—including closing the learning gap—during a talk with the Y’s Women today. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
By Phyllis Groner
Betty Sternberg, former state commissioner of education, touched on how educators need to close the educational gap during her talk with the Y’s Women today.
Sternberg served as education commissioner from 2003 through 2006, and she is now the superintendent of schools in Greenwich.
She said she believes the emphasis on testing as laid out under the federal No Child Left Behind Act is the wrong way to educate.
It’s a waste of money to test children who know little English or come from a home environment that does not encourage learning, she said, and there is a large educational gap between the rich and poor.
Westport police officers were busy making vehicle stops over the holiday weekend, but there were no major incidents on the road between last Wednesday through Sunday.
Police Sgt. Jerry Shannon, public information officer, said officers made 117 motor vehicle stops, made two driving while intoxicated arrests and responded to 15 accidents over the course of the long weekend.
Officers handed out a variety of citations, he said, including speeding, cell phone violations, seat belt violations and stop sign violations.
Officers also wrapped up the Click It or Ticket program last weekend, Shannon said, and handed out 137 seat belt citations over the course of the two weeks of the program.
Residents are invited to a ceremony when town officials will receive the 2006 Democracy Challenge Cup trophy from Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz on Tuesday, Dec. 5 at 10 a.m. in the Town Hall auditorium.
Westport won the award in the mid-size town category for the second time for having the best voter turnout in the November election among towns its size. In addition to 2006, the town was awarded the trophy in 2000.
“We are delighted to win this award again,” said First Selectman Gordon Joseloff. “It’s a reflection of the interest and the involvement of Westporters in local, state, and national politics.”
Town Clerk Patricia Strauss said it is an honor to win the award for the second time in six years.
More Westporters, including the owners of 88 Roseville Road, are seeking to designate their homes as historical to protect them from the wrecking crews. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Bulldozers have become a familiar site throughout Westport over the last decade, but some residents are hoping to keep them away from their homes.
The Representative Town Meeting is considering adding 113 Cross Highway to the town’s historic property ordinance, which would protect the house from destruction, and it’s part of a recent trend of Westporters seeking to designate their homes as historical.
Morley Boyd, a Historic District Commission member, said more people are contacting commission members about the designation, which he finds unusual.
“I think it’s a reaction to the fact that homes that were once considered untouchable are being torn down,” he said. “People are feeling a sense of vulnerability.”
It’s almost December, but with warm temperatures on Sunday there were many boats out on Long Island Sound. Warm temperatures are expected to continue this week. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
1 p.m. – Town Hall Room 309 – Historic District Commission
7 p.m. – Town Hall Room 309/307 – Board of Finance Executive Session
8 p.m. – Town Hall Room 309/307 – Board of Finance Budget Work Session
Betty Sternberg: Talking about No Child Left Behind. Contributed photoFormer state Education Commissioner Betty Sternberg will speak to the Y’s Women at its next meeting on Monday at the Westport-Weston Family Y.
Her talk will cover “a State Perspective on Education” as well as her thoughts on the federal No Child Left Behind Act.
Coffee and Conversation starts at 11 a.m. with the meeting starting at 11:30 a.m. Sternberg will answer questions following her talk.
Sternberg served as Connecticut Commissioner of Education in 2003 through 2006, and she was the first woman to hold the position. She is currently Superintendent of Schools in Greenwich.
For more information, call Ann Lloyd at (203) 226-4145.
Sunday, November 26, 2006
Tuesday’s Staples football class L semifinal playoff game against West Haven will be played at Fairfield Warde at 6:30 p.m.
While the Wreckers earned home field advantage with their 20-0 Thanksgiving Day win over Greenwich, the Staples field does not have lights.
Despite last-minute attempts to get temporary lights in time for Tuesday, those efforts were unsuccessful.
Saturday was a good day for walking at Westport’s Compo Beach—for people and dogs—as the temperature rose to the high 40s. More of the same is forecast for today. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Aubie Locke for WestportNow.com
11:30 a.m. - Longahore Club Park - PAL ice rink open
Saturday, November 25, 2006
Westport property transfers as reported by the Town Clerk’s office for the period Nov. 13-17, 2006:
Paul and Janet Bradshaw to Rene Rensch and Nadja Kapellen, 23 Strathmore Lane, $376,500
Mattera Construction Co. LLC to David Smith and Donna Benson, 13 Sprucewood Lane, $2,300,000
Pondview Village LLC to Roger M. and Nancy Pyka Sachs, 6A Pheasant Lane, $3,050,000
Margot Hentoff to Carol B. Becker, Unit 210 Lansdowne, $835,000
Santa Clause came to Westport with one of his helpers today. Today was the first of three consecutive Saturdays when downtown visitors can meet Santa from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in a program sponsored by the Downtown Merchants Association. “Wagon Rides on Main Street” will also be available noon to 3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday during the first two weekends in December. The Staples High School Orphenians will serenade downtown shoppers on Saturday, Dec. 16 at noon to 4:30 p.m., and the Fairfield County Chorale with sing carols on Sunday, Dec. 17 from 12:30-3:30 p.m. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com
The Orphenians, the chorus and chorale group of Westport’s Staples High School, got some national television exposure this morning when they were featured on ABC’s “Good Morning America-Weekend” which broadcast live from the Stamford Town Center. Alice Lipson led the group in holiday songs. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com/ABC photo
Friday’s night’s opening night audience gave an enthusiastic reception to the Westport Community Theater’s latest production, J.B Priestley’s thriller “An Inspector Calls.” Performances run through Dec. 10 on Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., Sundays at 2 p.m. and Thursday, Nov. 30 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $12-$16. For ticket reservations, call (203) 226-1983. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
12:20 p.m. - Longahore Club Park - PAL ice rink open
8 p.m. - Westport Town Hall - Westport Community Theater presents “An Inspector Calls”
Paul Newman and Westport were spotlighted in the “Person of the Week” segment tonight on the “ABC World News” broadcast.
Paul Newman and Michel Nischan appear on the “Person of the Week” segment tonight on “ABC World News.” ABCNews.com photo
The report said Newman and chef Michel Nischan were seeking “to bring back the small-town feeling” to Westport by establishing their new Dressing Room restaurant at the Westport Country Playhouse.
“I came to Westport 45 years ago, and Westport has changed,” Newman said. “Hopefully, this will help us change a little bit back to the way we were.”
“Any place you have bedroom communities,” Nischan added, “it becomes, you know, strip malls and large corporate shopping.”
Friday, November 24, 2006
After a slow morning, shoppers converged on Westport’s Main Street this afternoon in what merchants refer to as “Black Friday,” the day after Thanksgiving which marks the start of the holiday shopping season. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com
The Westport Community Theatre’s production of J.B Priestley’s thriller “An Inspector Calls” opens tonight in the theater at Town Hall. In the play, an English family in 1912 is celebrating the engagement of their daughter when their evening is shattered by the arrival of an inspector. Performances run through Dec. 10 on Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., Sundays at 2 p.m. and Thursday, Nov. 30 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $12-$16. For ticket reservations, call (203) 226-1983. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo
Owen Sherman, 3, and his father Russell were among the first skaters at the PAL Ice Skating Rink at Westport’s Longshore Club Park today. Very quickly 30-40 skaters were on the ice as part of the opening day festivities at the rink. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com
The PAL Ice Rink at Westport’s Longshore Club Park opened today at noon. The rink, which is located on the tennis courts during the winter, is a fund-raising source for PAL. For schedule information for the rink, visit www.wpalrink.com or call (203) 226-rink. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Leonard Guarente: Talking on longevity issues. Contributed photoThe next Community Conversation at the Westport Public Library will focus on aging. It will take place on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. in the library’s McManus Room.
Leonard Guarente, an internationally recognized expert in the field of aging, will address questions related to longevity in the session titled “The Future of Longevity—Will You Feel 70 When You’re Actually 90?”
He will talk about how classical views of the inevitability of aging are being overturned; how one gene, SIR2, may be an anti-aging gene; how calorie restriction works to extend life span and good health; what we can do now to increase longevity; and when to expect the fruits of current research.
The program is free and open to the public. For more information, call (203) 291-4840 or visit www.westportlibrary.org.
Autism Speaks will host a Theater Gala for the Thursday, Nov. 30 performance of “A Christmas Carol” at the Westport Country Playhouse.
All proceeds from the evening’s festivities – which will include a live auction—will benefit Autism Speaks, a New York City-based nonprofit organization dedicated to increasing awareness of autism and raising money to fund autism research and treatments.
Charles Dickens’ holiday classic is adapted and directed by Tazewell Thompson, playhouse artistic director.
For ticket information, visit www.autismspeaks.org.
Before the rain, swans were swimming on the Saugatuck River near the Westport Public Library. The rain is expected to move out in time for the official kickoff of the holiday shopping season. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com