Sunday, March 25, 2007
Westport building officials are reviewing an application to demolish the house at 3 Charmers Landing off of Saugatuck Avenue. The 1890 house has 5,651 square feet of space and sits on one acre of waterfront property. It changed hands recently at $6,205,000. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
With temperatures in the 50s, the kite surfers on Long Island Sound drew a crowd along Westport’s Compo Beach on Saturday. A winter mix of weather moved through overnight, but temperatures are expected to climb into the 60s this week. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Juliet Balian for WestportNow.com
1 p.m. - Earthplace - “An Inconvenient Truth”
2 p.m. - Westport Public Library - Westport Reads: The Burden of Perfection
Westport educators Kathis Bennewitz and Sarah Spencer facilitated two workshops called “Step Back in Time to 1865” for children in grades two and three at the Minds in Motions workshops at the Bedford Middle School today. Using costumes, art activities, games and dramatic play, the children discovered what it was like to be a child in Westport in 1865. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com
Saturday, March 24, 2007
Visitors to the Westport Center for Senior Activities today learned about the presidents and first ladies. Photographer and historian Bob Berthelson of Trumbull presented anecdotes about former presidents and first ladies in a slide show titled “The President Did What?” Each story was illustrated with slides of presidents and first ladies, and he had a story about each president. Berthelson, who has presented programs to audiences in Connecticut since 1965 and who has been awarded the Certificate of Commendation of the American Association of State and Local History, said it will be harder to give the same talk in the future as there are more presidents. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
By Dave Matlow
Two Westport families which joined together to purchase a neighboring property watched today as the house at 18 Sue Terrace off Crescent Road was demolished.
The house at 18 Sue Terrace in Westport came down today. Featured as the WestportNow Teardown of the Day on June 14, 2006, it sold in May 2006 for $432,000 to two neighboring familes. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Other neighbors joined the families of the property’s new owners, Ed Moeller and Andy Tsilfides, to observe and celebrate the demolition of the 2,246-square-foot corner house built on .40 acre in 1954.
The owners said the purchase was made to allow them and not someone else to determine what is to be built in their neighborhood.
“Andy and I purchased this run-down property with the intention of building a house on it that will help to beautify the street and our neighborhood,” said Moeller.
The United Way of Westport-Weston has announced plans to merge with the larger United Way of Eastern Fairfield, which serves Fairfield, Bridgeport, Stratford, Monroe, Easton and Trumbull.
Both groups said the combined organization would help serve their communities better. The merger, which had been under discussion for some time, will close by July 1, officials said.
The decision follows a merger among three United Way chapters in Stamford, Danbury and New Milford announced last month.
The United Way of Westport-Weston, with headquarters at 489 Post Road East in Westport, has two staff members and annual revenues of about $850,000. The Bridgeport-based Eastern United Way employs 22 full-time workers and has annual revenues of about $7.9 million.
With temperatures warming with spring here, it’s almost boating season, including at Old Mill Pond. Temperatures will dip into the 40s this weekend, but are expected to go back into the 50s next week. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
TD Banknorth said Friday it will close one of its four branches in Westport, once part of the old Westport Bank & Trust Co., as part of a restructuring plan that will shutter 24 branches and cut 400 positions.
There was no official word on which Westport office will close, but a bank source said it would be the one at 420 Post Road West. The other branches are located at 90 Post Road East, 1111 Post Road East, and 50 Charles St.
Customers will be notified of specific branch closings in mid-April, with most offices tentatively scheduled to be closed during the third quarter, the company said.
The four Connecticut branches to be closed employ a total of 14 people, a company spokeswoman said. The employees, who were given the news Thursday, will be reassigned to other branches where possible.
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Earthplace - Nursery School 40th anniversary celebration
5-8 p.m. - Westport Woman’s Club - Gloria Hunter rememberance
8 p.m. - Staples High School - Staples Players present “The Mystery of Edwin Drood”
Westport police today arrested a youth on sexual assault charges.
The identity or age of the teenager was not disclosed “because of his age and circumstances surrounding the investigation,” said Lt. Gorden Hiltz.
He said police received a complaint of an alleged sexual assault and members of the department’s patrol division as well as detectives “were able to compile information that led to the arrest of one individual.”
Hiltz said the youth was charged with sexual assault, unlawful restraint, threatening, possession of a dangerous weapon and breach of the peace. He was released to the custody of his parents on a written promise to appear in court on Monday.
Mitchells of Westport tonight hosted the 10th annual Staples High School Varsity Fashion Show and Auction. Among the models were seniors Ben King, a volleyball and soccer player, and Emma Goss, a captain of the cherrleading team. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
Temperatures remained in the 50s today, including at Westport’s Compo Beach, but rain moved through the area. Temperatures are expected to be in the high 40s this weekend, and there is no rain in the forecast. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Friday, March 23, 2007
There will be solar panels on Westport fire headquarters this spring, and town officials will receive additional help in installing more solar panels potentially on a school.
The Board of Selectmen is poised to sign a memorandum of agreement to accept a two-kilovolt solar panel system from the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund because more than 100 Westporters have signed up for a clean energy option with Connecticut Light and Power. For each 100 households that sign up for the clean energy option, the town receives a a two-kilovolt solar panel system.
Public Works Director Stephen Edwards said the town most likely will bank the panels and wait until several hundred more people sign up so town officials would be installing a larger system.
Carl Leaman, Green Energy Task Force chairman, said he would like to see the solar panels installed on a school, and specifically Staples High School.
ESPN Producer Willie Weinbaum speaks about the ESPN documentary “Tillman’s Final Mission,” which was nominated for an Emmy, during today’s Sunrise Rotary session. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
By Dave Matlow
Willie Weinbaum, an ESPN producer of documentaries, today presented to the Westport Sunrise Rotary Club a report on his investigation of the 2004 “friendly fire” death of pro football star Pat Tillman while on duty with the U.S. Army in Afghanistan.
Tillman once played pro football for the Arizona Cardinals, and the results of a U.S. Department of Defense investigation of his death are due to be released on Monday. News reports said that inquiry found that nine officers, including up to four generals, mishandled the aftermath of Tillman’s death.
The interviews Weinbaum conducted were aired by ESPN on its “Outside the Line” on Oct. 15, 2006, in an episode entitled “Tillman’s Final Mission.” The documentary was nominated for an Emmy.
Shortly after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, Tillman left his team and joined the Army. He was in Afghanistan as a U.S. Army Ranger at the time of his death on April 22, 2004.
Westport property transfers as reported by the Town Clerk’s office for the period March 12-16, 2007:
Stuart A. and Nancy P. McKeever to B. Deracey Gilbert, 36 Edgewater Hillside, $1,750,000
Stanley M. Seligson Properties to 1032 Post Road East LLC, 1032 Post Road East, $2,275,000
Matthew C. and Mary Rose to 45 Gorham LLC, 45 Gorham Ave., $815,000
Dorothy and Jordan Kaplan to Mary E. and Matthew C. Rose, 7 Cypress Pond Road, $720,000
The first draft of the update to the Town Plan of Conservation and Development is due to the Westport Planning and Zoning Commission as early as late next week.
Glenn Chalder, Planimetrics principal who is working on the plan with the commission, said Thursday night during a commission work session he wants to have the first draft completed by Thursday.
P&Z Director Laurence Bradley said the first draft plan would be the subject of two discussion sessions with the commission on April 12 and 16, and there is no public session scheduled on the proposed plan until the second draft is completed.
“The first draft is really for the commission to discuss and hash out,” he said.
The Westport Planning and Zoning Commission has received the second application from Marsh Development in a plan to revitalize Saugatuck Center.
The new planned development, which is called “Saugatuck Mill,” is for 12, 16, 20 Ketchum St. and 518 Riverside Ave. It is across the street from the first development the commission approved earlier this year (See WestportNow Feb. 8).
The property is a total of 2.8 acres and the plans call for a mix of residential and commercial use on the property, which is much like the previous application.
The plans call for the demolition of the structures on 12, 16 and 20 Ketchum St., and the 16,000-square-foot office building at 518 Riverside Ave. will remain standing.
Westport’s Compo Beach was a popular place on Thursday with temperatures reaching 55 degrees. Rain was expected during the night, but temperatures will remain mild and in the 50s for the next few days. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
3 p.m. – Town Hall Room 201 – Community Inclusion Task Force
6:30-9 p.m. - Mitchells of Westport - Varsity Vogue Fashion Show
8 p.m. - Seabury Center - Composers Project: Tania León & Ursula Oppens, Jade Simmons, Brasil Guitar Duo
8 p.m. - Staples High School - Staples Players present “The Mystery of Edwin Drood”
The Westport Planning and Zoning Commission is considering creating one residential zone with regulations that are based on lot size.
The commission discussed the potential of the plan during a meeting tonight on proposed residential structure regulation changes, which was the subject of a public workshop last week (See WestportNow March 15).
The proposal came up in a discussion on how to prevent a large number of homes that do not conform to the new regulations if they are approved.
Glenn Chalder, Planimetrics consultant who is helping craft the regulations in addition to working on updating the Town Plan of Conservation and Development, said the commission could create one zone rather than its current zones with flexible standards that are based on the size of the lot.
Thursday, March 22, 2007
With temperatures in the 50s today, kite surfers flocked to Westport’s Compo Beach. Temperatures are expected to stay in the 50s for the next few days, although there is rain in the forecast. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Lynn U. Miller for WestportNow.com
Spring’s first robins were spotted at Longshore Club Park today. Temperatures reached 55 degrees today, and they will continue to stay in the 50s for the next few days. Rain is expected tonight. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
David Pogue, New York Times and CBS award-winning technology correspondent, spoke before the Y’s Men of Westport Weston this morning. Pogue discussed technological advances that he believes would have the biggest impact on our lives in the near future. An avid blogger, he said he receives 400-1,000 e-mails daily from around the world. Pogue is a Westport resident and has lived here with his wife, Jennifer, and their three children for the last four years. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com
A car was stuck in the flooding on Pumpkin Hill when Westport had heavy rains on March 2. Town officials are planning to update a 30-year-old study on the town’s flooding potential. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WN file photo
By Jennifer Connic
Westport officials are planning to update an almost 30-year-old study of nine town waterways and their potential for flooding as a check on current priorities.
Public Works Director Stephen Edwards said the intent of the update to the 1978 Jackson Study is to better respond to current weather patterns and land development trends in Westport.
The first step, he said, is to get the Flood and Erosion Control Board and the Conservation Commission on board with the project. The Flood and Erosion Control Board will discuss the proposal at its April 4 meeting.
The original Jackson Study, Edwards said, was in response to severe flooding in Westport during the 1960s. It examined nine waterways including Muddy Brook, Dead Mans Brook, Pussy Willow Brook, Stony Brook, Poplar Plains, Indian River, Silver Brook and New Creek. The Saugatuck River and Sasco Creek were not included because they were included in a federal review.
The Westport Sunrise Rotary Club will hear about an ESPN documentary about pro football player Pat Tillman’s death due to friendly fire at its next session on Friday at 7:30 a.m. at the Peppermill Restaurant.
ESPN producer Willie Weinbaum will speak about the documentary, which today was nominated for a sports Emmy
The results of the investigation of an alleged cover-up of the circumstances of Tillman’s 2004 death while serving with U.S. troops in Afghanistan are due to be released on Monday.
Weinbaum has mainly produced for ESPN’s Outside The Lines investigations and has recently worked on issues as diverse the dangers of fans rushing the basketball courts after high school games to the attempts of Adam Greenberg to return to major league baseball after a severe blow to the head during his first major league at bat.
Construction crews completed the demolition of 10 Compo Parkway in Westport today. The crews started the demolition on Wednesday. The 2,400-square-foot house that was built in 1928 stood near the entrance to Longshore Club Park. It was the WestportNow Teardown of the Day on Jan. 21, 2006. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Those who shop at upscale women’s fashion store Eileen Fisher on Main Street in Westport on Saturday will be making a donation to the Interfaith Housing Association’s Bacharach Community.
The Bacharach Community is a nonprofit program that provides emergency shelter for mothers and children in need of safe housing.
The store will donate 10 percent of the day’s retail sales, and customers will be given $25 off and a gift with each purchase.
For more information, contact the Eileen Fisher store at (203) 227-1099 or Heather Cavanagh, IHA’s director of community relations, at (203) 226-3426 ext. 11.
Westport parents tonight will have an opportunity to learn how to take the stress out of the college admission process during a meeting with the admissions dean from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The session will run from 7:30-9 p.m. at Saugatuck Elementary School.
Marilee Jones, admissions dean at MIT, will present “Less Stress, More Success: Taking the Anxiety out of College Admissions.” Tickets are free and are available at all public schools and the United Way office at 489 Post Road East.
The session is sponsored by the Westport Weston United Way and Positive Youth Development.