Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Westport firefighters were among area departments lending a hand to Weston today as flames destroyed a 6,000-square foot home under construction on Smith Ridge Road. The blaze, fanned by high winds, spread to nearby wildlands and damaged a second residence on Forest Road. Several other homes were evacuated. Police said the blaze was touched off by a worker burning boxes. He was charged with reckless burning. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo
UPDATE Westport firefighters joined Weston and other surrounding departments today in battling a Weston blaze in a house under construction that gusty winds quickly spread to nearby dry woodlands.
Westport firefighters were among area communities lending aid to Weston today as flames destroyed a home and spread to woodlands. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo
Weston police took a construction worker into custody who witnesses said was burning boxes that touched off the blaze that eventually covered 16 acres of woodlands.
Westport received a call for mutual aid at 11:27 a.m., said Assistant Chief Andrew Kingsbury. In all, 13 Westport firefighters responded with two engines and the regional communications vehicle, he said.
Kingsbury said the blaze destroyed a the 6,000-square foot home under construction on Smith Ridge Road.
The Westport Police Department has requested that the Board of Selectmen consider postponement of the request by Team Mossman Events for use of town roadways as relates to a proposed triathlon to be held on Oct. 11, First Selectman Gordon F. Joseloff’s office said today.
Team Mossman’s request is scheduled for the Board of Selectmen’s Wednesday public hearing. Joseloff had requested at the board’s March 11 meeting that action on the application be delayed to give more time for public input. (See WestportNow March 16, 2009)
It is anticipated that the board will postpone any action to a future public hearing allowing additional time for the police to review the triathlon with the sponsors, Joseloff’s office said.
Westport Planning & Zoning Director Laurence Bradley announced today that starting April 1 the Planning & Zoning Department will no longer require applicants to make appointments to obtain a zoning permit.
“As part of a new initiative to improve customer service, the Town of Westport is eliminating the requirement that an appointment be made,” Bradley said.
As of April 1, walk-in zoning permits will be available on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays between 9 a.m. and noon. A sign-in sheet will be available with the last sign-in at 11:30 a.m.
Walk-in appointments that will be issued while residents wait are limited to the following: accessory buildings, new commercial tenants, decks, driveway modifications, interior renovations, commercial interior renovations, residential home occupations, pools & spas, signs and tennis courts.
Someone apparently has developed a fondness for the Project Return birds placed at various outside venues around Westport promoting the Project Return birdhouse auction fundraiser April 3 at The Inn at Longshore. Organizers said at least 14 of the birds have disappeared from in front of locations on Compo Road North and Evergreen Avenue. They ask that those who took the birds, which are similar to the ones pictured, to please return them to the locations so everyone can benefit from their presence. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
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”
7:30 p.m. - Westport Public Library - Animé Night
7:30 p.m. – Town Hall Auditorium – Special Board of Finance Budget Meeting (Selectman’s Budget) (live coverage cable channel 79 and westportct.gov)
7:30 p.m. – Town Hall Room 201/201A – Zoning Board of Appeals
7:30 p.m. – Town Hall Room 309 – Architectural Review Board
Monday, March 23, 2009
By Dave Matlow
Ron Provenzano, a Bridgeport native who has been a barber for 17 years, says “it’s always been a dream of mine to open a shop in Westport.”
Paul Mignone of Trumbull is in the barber chair at Ron’s Barber Shop. “Ron has been my barber since 1992,” he said. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Now that dream has come true.
Despite the difficult economy, Provenzano has opened Ron’s Barber Shop at 26 Railroad Place across from the Metro-North railroad station in the Saugatuck area.
Provenzano, who lived in the Saugatuck area in the 1980s for six years, said he currently operates a shop in Trumbull on Tuesdays and will open the Westport shop Wednesday through Saturday.
A baby seal that appeared to be stuck came under the watchful eyes of three 17-year-old Staples High School students Saturday at Westport’s Compo Beach. “It was during low tide, so we just walked out into around ankle deep water and stuck around while the tide came in to make sure it was able to swim away,” said Ross Gendels, a Staples senior. “The water was very cold.” He said he was accompanied by David Silverstein, also a senior, and Annie Bandanny, a junior.” It was very calm, and it appeared to be young,” Gendels said of the seal. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Ross Gendels for WestportNow.com
A baby seal swims away from Westport’s Compo Beach on Saturday after apparently getting stuck during low tide. Three 17-year-old Staples High School students—seniors Ross Gendels and David Silverstein and junior Annie Bandanny—waded into the cold water to keep watch on the seal to make sure it could get free when the tide came in. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Ross Gendels for WestportNow.com
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”
6 p.m. - 9 p.m. - Westport Public Library - Screening of “Under Our Skin” documentary about Lyme Disease
6 p.m. – Town Hall Room 309 – Maintenance Study Committee
7 p.m. – Staples High School Conference Room 333 – Board of Education Executive Session
7 p.m. – Town Hall Room 104 – Board of Assessment Appeals
7:30 p.m. – Staples High School, Cafeteria B – Board of Education (televised on Channel 78)
7:30 p.m. – Town Hall Room 201/201A – Parks & Recreation Commission
Sunday, March 22, 2009
Alice Schroeder, author of “The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life,” was guest speaker today at the Westport Public Library. Her story of one of the world’s richest men attracted a large audience. Among her insights: “While it doesn’t seem like it, Warren Buffett has a sense of humor.” Schroeder, who lives in Greenwich, was a noted insurance industry analyst and writer who was a managing director at Morgan Stanley. She first met Buffett when she published research on Berkshire Hathaway. Her grasp of the subject and insight so impressed him that he offered her access to his files and to himself. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
John Paul “Bucky” Pizzarelli, a noted classical jazz guitarist and banjoist, and his musical friends today wowed the toe-tapping audience at the Pequot Library with their melodic jazz concert presented by the Westport Arts Center and the Pequot Library. For more than half a century, Pizzarelli, 83, has been a part of the fraternity of musicians who have kept mainstream and traditional jazz alive. Playing with him on cello was Jesse Levy; Jerry Bruno, bass; Aaron Weinstein and Sara Caswell, violin; and Olivia Koppell, viola. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Noon - 4 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - “Preemptive Resistances” (last day)
Noon - 4 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - “Second Edition,” altered books by artists from Greens Farms Academy (last day)
2 p.m. - Westport Public Library - [email protected] Library: Alice Schroeder, “Snowball” (bio of Warren Buffet)
2 p.m. - Senior Center - Kit McClure All-Women Jazz Band (doors open 1 p.m., complimentary refreshments 1:30 p.m.)
3 p.m. - Staples High School Black Box Theatre - Staples Players, “12 Angry Men”
4 p.m. - Pequot Library - Westport Arts Center presents Bucky Pizzarelli & Friends
5 p.m. - Christ & Holy Trinity Church (75 Church Lane) - The Choir of St. John’s College, Cambridge
Saturday, March 21, 2009
Boys of all ages had a great time with the Powell brothers, Mikey and Casey, during a spring warm up clinic for the forthcoming Westport PAL lacrosse season Friday night and today at PJ Romano Field. Cool temperatures and bright sunshine added to the upbeat atmosphere and the excitement of having the U.S. National Team players coaching. Contributed photo
Youngsters at Westport’s Coleytown Middle School rehearse for the forthcoming musical production of ‘Seussical.” Directed by Ben Frimmer, the Coleytown Company production opens Thursday, April 2 at 7 p.m. with additional performances Friday, April 3 at 7 p.m. and Saturday, April 4 at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. Tickets may be purchased at the school on Thursday, March 26 and Friday, March 27 from 10:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.; Monday, March 30 – Friday, April 3 from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. “Seussical,” which combines some of the best known and loved Dr. Seuss classics, opened on Broadway in 2000 and has subsequently enjoyed two national tours. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo
Westporter Suzanne Sherman Propp delighted a Westport Public Library audience full of young people today as she played selections from her new CD “Play” and other songs. She was accompanied by fellow Staples graduate Josh Margolis. Propp is a music teacher at Green’s Farms Elementary School and choral director. A former cheerleader at Staples as well as an Orphenian and a member of the orchestra, she studied English and music at Colgate University and obtained her MBA from the Columbia University Graduate School of Business. She is daughter of Ruth Sherman, well known for teaching classes at the Senior Center and Family Y as well as at Longshore during the summer. Mom helped sell copies of “Play” to the crowd which can also be ordered at www.suzanneshermanpropp.com. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com
Westport and Weston firefighters joined forces today to battle a house fire at 5 Lyons Plains Road near the Weston town line. The blaze began from what the homeowner—who had left about 90 minutes earlier—said was discarded fireplace ashes placed in a container next to a garage. Flames heavily damaged portions of the exterior and interior second floor above the garage. The house was unoccupied except for a Labrador dog named Cody who was quickly rescued by firefighters. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
Weston firefighters responding to a 911 call of a house fire today at 9 Lyons Plains Road in Weston found no fire there but did spot smoke coming from 5 Lyons Plains Road just over the town line in Westport. They were first on the scene, quickly followed by Westport firefighters as flames damaged the exterior of a garage and the second floor and roof of the structure. The homeowner returned home a short time later and said she had put some fireplace ashes into a garbage bin before heading out for some errands. Firefighters found the home unoccupied except for a Labrador named Cody who they quickly rescued. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
A resident of Westport’s Viking Green spotted this creature observing goings on in his neighborhood today. He believes it’s a hawk but is not sure what kind. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Andy Yemma for WestportNow.com
Members of the Westport Garden Club met to pot up “bare roots” for the annual plant sale May 8 at the Saugatuck Congregational Church. Pictured are Lydia Menendez and Nathalie Fonteyne. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Joni Andrews for WestportNow.com
At Westport’s Pack 100 and Pack 192 Blue and Gold banquet, Aaron Samuels looks on as Devon Murray and Jack Foley light a candle as part of the awards ceremony marking their receiving the Arrow of Light, the highest achievement attainable by Cub Scouts. Also joining the three scouts in receiving the Arrow of Light award were scouts Wells Baumann, Garrick New, Keanan Pucci, Cole Moyer and Alexander Baumann. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Lauretta Carl for WestportNow.com
Westport artists Howard Munce and Nina Bentley look over one of the birdhouses on display in the Little Gallery at the Westport Historical Society. Bentley curated the exhibit, “The Art of the Birdhouse,” along with Totney Benson and Jeannette Salfeety. Included in the collection is a variety of birdhouses designed for Project Return’s annual birdhouse auctions with this year’s event being held at The Inn at Longshore on Friday, April 3 at 7 p.m. The exhibit runs through May 3. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com
Noon - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Presidents, Politicians & Popular Heroes”
Noon - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “The Art of the Birdhouse”
Noon - 4 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - “Preemptive Resistances”
Noon - 4 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - “Second Edition,” altered books by artists from Greens Farms Academy
2:30 p.m. - Westport Public Library - Family Program: Suzanne Propp - launch of her music CD “Play”
2:30 p.m. - 3:15 p.m. - Earthplace - Critters and Crafts (ages 3-10)
7:30 p.m. - Staples High School Black Box Theatre - Staples Players, “12 Angry Men”
At least one Westport resident is among American International Group employees who have received subpoenas from Connecticut officials looking into bonuses paid by the insurance company that were funded with federal bailout money.
State Attorney General Richard Blumenthal and the Legislature’s Banks Committee subpoenaed AIG Chief Executive Officer Edward Liddy and 13 Connecticut employees who benefited from the $165 million in bonuses that drew outrage across the nation this week.
The lawmakers are demanding the employees from AIG’s Financial Product’s office in Wilton appear at a committee hearing Thursday in Hartford to answer questions about the bonuses.
The Westport resident, whose identity is not being published by WestportNow, has hired a private security company to provide additional security around the resident’s home, according to a source familiar with the situation.
Friday, March 20, 2009
Westport police said today they had arrested a 21-year-old Wilton man who worked as a lifeguard at the Westport Weston Family Y on charges of public indecency and risk of injury to a minor.
Joshua Wang was arrested following a complaint from the Y that he was observed several times exposing and fondling himself in a locker room, said Lt. David Kassay. The Y fired him on March 6 following the complaint, he said.
During an interview, Wang attributed his actions to an existing medical condition, Kassay said. At no time did he approach any youth in the locker room, he said.
Wang was contacted about the active warrant for his arrest and turned himself in, Kassay said. He was released on a $1,000 bond for a court date of March 30 at Norwalk Superior Court.
Westport property transfers as reported by the Town Clerk’s office for the period March 2 - 6, 2009:
First Connecticut Capital LLC to Jean-Marie Cuillerot and Fredrique Gugnon, 12 Mills Street, $900,000
Axis Point Cross Highway Assoc. LLC to Richard Parower, 2 Whippoorwill Lane, $2,100,000
Christine Silver to Jennifer Dewis, 30 Hillandale Road, $1,447,500
Kenneth Gayron to Michael and Lisa Mis, 51 Center St., $1,537,500
UPDATE A Westport woman was pronounced dead at Norwalk Hospital today following a one-car crash on Warnock Drive off Easton Road. Emergency workers said a passerby told them the car suddenly veered off the road and crashed into a tree, suggesting the driver may have had a medical condition which contributed to the accident. Police identified the woman as Judith S. Holland, 63, of Warnock Drive and said the medical examiner will investigate the cause of death. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
UPDATE Westport emergency workers tend to a 63-year-old Westport woman whose car crashed into a tree today on Warnock Drive off Easton Road. She was transported to Norwalk Hospital where she was pronounced dead. Police identified her as Judith S. Holland of Warnock Drive and said the medical examiner will investigate the cause of death. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Some tickets are still available for tonight’s Club Barcelona, a fun-filled Mediterranean-themed celebration to benefit Westport’s Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts to be held at the Inn at Longshore at 7 p.m. The gala includes tapas and wine bars, buffet supper, entertainment, auctions, and dancing in the Club Barcelona discothèque, sponsored by RBC Wealth Management, Southport. The price is $125 per person. To charge tickets by phone, call: 226-7600, or visit the Pavilion’s Web site for additional details. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed graphic