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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Last Licks Image
Satchel, a Westport resident and frequent visitor to Compo Beach, got in a last swim of the season today at the beach. The seasonal ban on animals at the beach begins Wednesday. Alan H. Martin for


03/31/09 11:36 PM Comments () • Permalink

Westport Bank Robber Pleads Guilty Image
Bank surveillance photo of robber. Contributed photo
A New Jersey man who robbed Westport’s Commerce Bank on Main Street in January 2008 dressed as a woman pleaded guilty in a Camden, N.J. federal court today to bank robbery charges, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.

Huy Trong Luong, 40, of Jersey City, N.J. admitted to robbing or attempting to rob nine banks in New Jersey and Connecticut over a five-month period in 2008 and getting away with more than $39,000, prosecutors said.

The U.S. Attorney’s office said he specifically pleaded guilty to two counts of bank robbery associated with the April 20, 2008, robbery of Commerce Bank in Bergenfield, N.J. and the Jan. 11, 2008, robbery of a Wachovia branch in Greenwich.

Luong also admitted committing the other seven robberies, and all of the conduct will be taken into consideration at sentencing, prosecutors said.

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03/31/09 08:51 PM Comments () • Permalink

Norwalk Community College Head Deals With the Unprepared

By Dave Matlow Image
David Levinson: facing 21st century educational dilemma. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for
Westporter David Levinson knows first hand what happens when schools don’t adequately prepare their students for college.

As president of Norwalk Community College, the “under-prepared student” is a problem he faces every day, he told the Westport Rotary Club today.

“At NCC, 70 percent of those admitted need to take at least one sub-college-level course to prepare them for college level studies,” Levinson said. 

This burdens the taxpayer twice, he explained. The first time is when a resident pays local taxes for high school education.

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03/31/09 08:00 PM Comments () • Permalink

WestportNow Teardown of the Day: 67 West Parish Road

67 West Parish Road, Westport, CT  06880
An application for a permit is in process to demolish the house at 67 West Parish Road in Westport’s Greens Farms area. Built in 1913, the one-story, vernacular-style home has 888 square feet and is situated on a .35-acre lot. Because it was built more than 50 years ago, the application will be reviewed by the Historic District Commission at its April meeting. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


03/31/09 05:28 PM Comments () • Permalink

Library Founder Seeks Facebook “Friends” Image
A sign under a bust of Morris Ketchum Jesup, founder of the Westport Public Library, proclaims that he is on Facebook, the social networking Internet site, and ready to accept “friends.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Lynn U. Miller for


03/31/09 04:15 AM Comments () • Permalink

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

8:30 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport/Weston Health District (180 Bayberry Lane) - Free training course: Lead-Safe Work Practices for painting, remodeling, maintenance
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Presidents, Politicians & Popular Heroes”
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “The Art of the Birdhouse”
10 a.m. - Westport Public Library - Jobseekers Resource Seminar
10 a.m. – Town Hall Room 309 – Arts Advisory Committee
7 p.m. – Town Hall Room 104 – Board of Assessment Appeals
7:30 p.m. - Westport Public Library - [email protected] Library: Jimmy Breslin, “The Good Rat: A True Story”
7:45 p.m. – Town Hall Room 309 – RTM Long Range Planning Committee


03/31/09 04:05 AM Comments Closed • Permalink

Ed Board Rejects Superintendent’s Call for Budget Restoration Image
The Westport Board of Education tonight by a 5-2 vote rejected a recommendation by Schools Superintendent Elliott Landon (r) that it seek restoration of the $1.4 million cut by the Board of Finance from its proposed 2009-10 budget of $96 million. (LaFleur and Taylor opposed.) Chairman Don O’Day (c), citing a $3 million cost of already negotiated wage increases, for the first time said he would seek to make up some of the cut through union wage concessions. But Ed Huydic, head of the teachers union, said he was “unequivocally opposed” to renegotiating its contract. The union official did reiterate, however, what he said was a “creative cost-saving” offer for a retirement incentive plan which he said the board had previously rejected. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


03/31/09 02:32 AM Comments () • Permalink

Monday, March 30, 2009

Sprout Closing on Post Road East Image
Sprout, a Westport retail store specializing in baby, toddler’s and children’s clothing, is closing after one year in business at 1799 Post Road East in the Garelick and Herbs plaza. The owner, Rebecca Henley, a Fairfield resident, said the store, which opened in March 2008, is closing because of a combination of the slow business climate and a lease dispute. She said the store will close before April 15 and until then everything is 40 to 60 percent off and “we are selling all the fixtures down to the flooring.” Henley, a longtime corporate marketing professional, said she considered opening at another location but “it’s very expensive to do so” in this economic climate. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


03/30/09 09:35 PM Comments () • Permalink

Sign of the Times Image
The vehicle lot at the now defunct Curran Cadillac dealership on Westport’s Post Road East was deserted today—the day the U.S. government called for the resignation of the General Motors CEO Rick Wagoner. Curran closed in February after 40 years in business. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


03/30/09 09:10 PM Comments () • Permalink

Westport Police Make Two Prostitution Arrests

Westport police said today they had arrested two women on prostitution charges after they offered their services on the Internet.

Both women were arrested in separate incidents at the Westport Inn, said Lt. David Kassay, commander of the Detective Bureau.

Helen Marks, 30, of Stamford, was arrested Thursday after an undercover officer answered an Internet ad and she offered to perform “an erotic massage,” he said. She was released on $200 bond with a Norwalk Superior Court date set for April 6.

On Friday night, detectives received information that another female involved with a Web site ad for erotic services had checked into the hotel, Kassay said.

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03/30/09 08:01 PM Comments () • Permalink

Honoring Our Heritage: 7 Maple Ave. South Image
Debra Belanger is honoring Westport’s heritage by displaying a Westport Historical Society plaque identifying her home at 7 Maple Ave. South as the Samuel T. Jennings house which was built c.1858. The Jennings house was initially built at Post Road East and Maple Avenue South but moved sometime prior to 1952 to its current location when the Greens Farms Shell Service Center was built. Belanger purchased the house in 2006 and was told that “it was built in 1930” but during renovations she found beams and wide planked floors which indicated an early date. The early date of c.1858 was discovered during research by the Westport Historical Society.  Belanger said that it was an “absolute pleasure and a rich learning experience to restore this house.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Bob Weingarten for


03/30/09 04:15 AM Comments () • Permalink

Monday, March 30, 2009

9 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. - Westport/Weston Health District - Wellness Clinic, adults and children
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Presidents, Politicians & Popular Heroes”
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “The Art of the Birdhouse”
10 a.m. – Town Hall Room 309 – Wastewater Management Committee
2:30 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. - Westport Public Library - Family Program: Draw On! Kick-off Workshop (Grades K+): “Harold and the Purple Crayon”
7 p.m. – Town Hall Room 104 – Board of Assessment Appeals
7:30 p.m. – Staples High School, Cafeteria B – Board of Education (televised, cable channel 78)
7:30 p.m. – 180 Bayberry Lane – Westport/Weston Health District Public Meeting
7:30 p.m. - Westport Public Library - Internet safety presentation (for parents and students)


03/30/09 04:05 AM Comments Closed • Permalink

Severe Thunderstorm Warning Issued

The National Weather Service in Upton N.Y. has issued a severe thunderstorm warning for Westport and parts of Fairfield Couny until 9:30 p.m.

At 8:28 p.m., National Weather Service Doppler radar indicated a severe thunderstorm capable of producing nickel size hail and damaging winds in excess of 60 mph.

This storm was located near Bedford or near Mount Kisco and moving northeast at 45 mph.


03/30/09 12:44 AM Comments () • Permalink

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Rain Doesn’t Keep Beach Visitors Away Image
Dogs and their owners were at Westport’s Compo Beach today despite the wet weather. The annual ban on animals at the beach goes into effect Wednesday on Wednesday until Oct. 1. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Lynn U. Miller for


03/29/09 11:05 PM Comments () • Permalink

Tracing F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Westport Connection Image
There was an unexpected overflow audience today at the Westport Historical Society for a lecture on “Westport in the World of F. Scott Fitzgerald.” Westporter Deej Webb (r), a history teacher in New Canaan, traced the history of Fitzgerald, who lived with his wife Zelda in Westport in 1920, with two of his novels, “The Great Gatsby” and “The Beautiful and Damned.” Webb, who grew up in a house near the Compo Road South home that the Fitzgeralds rented for a time, said he was able to identify some Westport areas that he said undoubtedly were the ones described in “The Great Gatsby.”  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for


03/29/09 10:54 PM Comments () • Permalink

Josephine Pagliaro Palmieri, 92

Mrs. Josephine Pagliaro Palmieri, 92, of Westport, wife of the late Philip (Filomeno) Palmieri, passed away Sunday, March 29, at home in the company of her Image
Josephine Palmieri (l) celebrated her 91st birthday in November 2007 with sisters Maria Izzo (c), then 98, and Delores (Jenny) Izzo, then 94. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Mary Palmieri Gai for

Mrs. Palmieri was born in Cavallari, Italy, Oct. 4, 1916, daughter of the late Joseph and Elisabetta (Carusone) Pagliaro and has been a resident of Westport for 77 years.

She is the owner of Palmieri Nurseries in Westport. Mrs. Palmieri was also a member of the Catholic Daughters of America, Court Assumption and Assumption Mature Adults.

Survivors include two sons, Carlo J. Palmieri and his wife Susan of Fairfield, and Francis J. Palmieri also of Fairfield; two daughters, Mary Palmieri Gai and her husband Andy of Westport, and Flo O’Brien and her husband Paul of Fairfield, one sister, Mary Izzo of Westport, one sister in-law, Maria Carusone of Westport, 17 grandchildren, 19 great-grandchildren and 32 nieces and nephews.

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03/29/09 10:18 PM Comments () • Permalink

Compo Launch Image
Breezy early spring days make for ideal kite flying conditions at Westport’s Compo Beach. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Lynn U. Miller for


03/29/09 04:15 AM Comments () • Permalink

Sunday, March 29, 2009

2 p.m. - Westport Public Library - [email protected] Library: Dalton Conley, “Elsewhere USA”
3 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - Westport in the World of F. Scott Fitzgerald by Deej Webb
4 p.m. - United Methodist Church (49 Weston Road)  - Gabriel Fauré‘s “Requiem” conducted by Leslie C. Smith


03/29/09 04:05 AM Comments Closed • Permalink

Kristin Chenoweth Entertains at Playhouse Benefit Concert Image
Actress and singer Kristin Chenoweth entertained tonight at a Westport Country Playhouse benefit and afterward mixed with guests at a reception. Pictured (l-r) are Michael Ross, Playhouse managing director; Joanne Woodward, former co-artistic director, Chenoweth, and Anne Keefe, former co-artistic director. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


03/29/09 03:46 AM Comments () • Permalink

In Touch With Trucks Image
Rob Hordon of Westport and his son Nate, 2, were among the many visitors who enjoyed exploring various types of trucks today at Coleytown Elementary School at a “touch-a-truck” event sponsored by the Westport Weston Cooperative Nursery School. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Lynn U. Miller for


03/29/09 03:25 AM Comments () • Permalink

Working the Machine Image
Willie Walsh, 2, of Westport put his imagination to good use and “drove” the back hoe like an expert at today’s “touch-a-truck” fund-raiser for the Westport Weston Cooperative Nursery School at Coleytown Elementary School. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Lynn U. Miller for


03/29/09 03:20 AM Comments () • Permalink

Penguin Plunge at Compo


03/29/09 01:44 AM Comments () • Permalink

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Arcudi’s Restaurant Near Opening Image
A new sign was placed at the soon to be opened Arcudi’s Restaurant at 1035 Post Road East. The owner, former First Selectman Joe Arcudi (inset), said that he hopes to open “in about 10 days.”  He said since he may not have a liquor license for a few months, customers will be allowed to bring their own bottles of wine. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


03/28/09 10:22 PM Comments () • Permalink

Preparing Easter and Passover Goodies Image
Westport’s Al’s Angels charity group today prepared more than 1,200 Easter and Passover baskets to be distributed to area needy. The group’s founder, Westporter Al DiGuido, thanked the volunteers whose work becomes even more important in these difficult economic times. More information on the group’s work may be found on its Web site. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Stephen Rubin for


03/28/09 08:16 PM Comments () • Permalink

Defining Skills for 21st Century Students Image
About 100 persons participated today in a “Community Conversation” at Westport’s Staples High School aimed at defining skills Westport students will need to achieve fulfilling personal and civic lives and to attain successful careers in the 21st century. Melissa Paolini (l), principal of Coleytown Elementary School, and Maria Castelluccio, principal of King’s Highway Elementary School, displayed results of their breakout group. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Ben Joseloff for


03/28/09 07:06 PM Comments () • Permalink

Mini Links at the Library Image
Westporter and ESPN personality Mike Greenberg tees off today with his family at the Westport Public Library’s unique mini-golf fund-raiser. More than 350 children were involved in the event that snaked through the library’s stacks. Chaired by Melissa Kane, it was sponsored by the Friends of the Westport Library. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for


03/28/09 05:28 PM Comments () • Permalink

Saturday Morning State Budget Talk Image
About a dozen persons turned out today for a talk on the state budget at Westport Town Hall hosted by state Sen. Toni Boucher and Rep. Joe Mioli. First Selectman Gordon F. Joseloff (r) introduced the legislators who addressed budget issues for more than two hours. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


03/28/09 05:24 PM Comments () • Permalink

The Numbers Tell the Story Image
Among slides shown today at a Westport Town Hall talk on the state budget was one that showed the recent sharp decline in tax revenues. State Sen. Toni Boucher, a Republican, and Rep. Joe Mioli, a Democrat (at podium), hosted the session which attracted about a dozen persons. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for


03/28/09 05:18 PM Comments () • Permalink

Nigerian Human Rights Activist Addresses Westport Audience Image
Hafsat Abiola, a Harvard-educated Nigerian human rights, civil rights and democracy activist, was guest speaker Friday night at Westport’s Earthplace, The Nature Discovery Center. The event was sponsored by the Connecticut Council of Vital Voices and Earthplace. Abiola founded and directs the Kudirat Initiative for Democracy which seeks to advance democracy in Africa by strengthening organizations and initiatives that support women.The Vital Voices Global Partnership is an international nonprofit organization that identifies, trains, and empowers emerging women leaders and entrepreneurs around the globe. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Nell Mednick for


03/28/09 01:22 PM Comments () • Permalink

Earthplace Hosts Nigerian Human Rights Activist Image
Westport’s Earthplace, The Nature Discovery Center, Friday night hosted a lecture by Nigerian human rights, civil rights and democracy activist Hafsat Abiola.The event was sponsored by the Connecticut Council of Vital Voices and Earthplace. Pictured are members of the Vital Voices Connecticut Council Steering Committee: back row: Elyse Nelson (head of the Washington, D.C. Vital Voices Global Partnership), Roberta Cooper (Westport), Thuy Tranthi (Westport), Avonne Seidman (Westport), Hafsat Abiola, Carol Mack (Weston), Joanne Krantz (Fairfield) and Lisa Teixeira (Westport). Front row: Amanda Glendinning (Ridgefield), Shelia Weiss (Westport), Nancy Wergeles (Weston), Susan Glendinning (Ridgefield), Sadie Gunuey (Weston) and Amy Kalafa (Weston). (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Nell Mednick for


03/28/09 01:16 PM Comments () • Permalink

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