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Thursday, December 31, 2015

Gallery: First Night Westport Weston 2016


Scenes from tonight’s First Night Westport Weston New Year’s Eve celebration. Dave Matlow, J.C. Martin, and Jaime Bairaktaris for WestportNow.com and WestportNow.com photos

   

12/31/15 10:37 PM Comments () • Permalink

Cops: New Year’s Eve Burglar Caught

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Kenneth Nichols: held in lieu of $50,000 bond. Westport Police photo

Westport Police tonight arrested a Southport man for burglary following a pursuit after residents reported they had returned home to find an unknown intruder inside their home, police said.

“Once confronted, the suspect left the residence without incident,” said Lt. Ryan Paulsson. He said the incident occurred about 4:45 p.m. at a residence near Post Road East and the Sherwood Island Connector.

“A description of the suspect was obtained and given out to responding units,” Paulsson said

“Shortly afterwards, an officer observed a person fitting the description driving a black pickup truck leaving the immediate area,” he said.

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12/31/15 10:02 PM Comments () • Permalink

Safe on Land

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A relative checks out an 8-year-old Westport girl after she was rescued from the Saugatuck River tonight after falling 15 to 20 feet as crowds were leaving the area following the First Night fireworks display. Other being wet and frightened, she was unhurt. However, her father (rear) suffered lacerations to his hands as he jumped in to pull her out.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

   

12/31/15 08:51 PM Comments () • Permalink

Rescued After Post-Fireworks Fall Into River

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An 8-year-old Westport girl is helped up a ladder tonight by Firefighter Joe Arnson after she fell 15 to 20 feet into the Saugatuck River following the First Night fireworks display. Her father jumped in to help her as she landed in about six inches of water. She was examined by EMS personnel who found her wet and frightened but otherwise unhurt. Her father suffered lacerations to his hands during the rescue. Firefighters Arnson and Nick Marsan were stationed nearby and grabbed the ladder from their engine. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

   

12/31/15 08:43 PM Comments () • Permalink

Goodbye to 2015, Hello to 2016

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First Night fireworks light up the Westport skyline tonight in this view from the west side of the Saugatuck River in Westport’s center. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) J.C. Martin for WestportNow.com

   

12/31/15 08:20 PM Comments () • Permalink

Fireworks Selfie

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A father and son take a selfie during the First Night fireworks tonight in Westport.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

   

12/31/15 08:15 PM Comments () • Permalink

Fireworks Watching

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Crowds outside the Westport Library tonight watch the First Night fireworks. Temperatures in the mid to upper 40s seemed just right for New Year’s Eve. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

   

12/31/15 08:10 PM Comments () • Permalink

Best Seat in the House

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A youngster enjoys a perfect view tonight of the First Night Westport Weston fireworks. The event was held at 7:30 p.m. because low tide later in the evening would not allow the barge up the river.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Jaime Bairaktaris for WestportNow.com

   

12/31/15 08:00 PM Comments () • Permalink

Putting on a Show

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An early First Night 10-minute fireworks display in the Saugatuck River in Westport’s center tonight drew large crowds along the river banks and on the Ruth Stdeinkraus Cohen Bridge. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Jaime Bairaktaris for WestportNow.com

   

12/31/15 07:50 PM Comments () • Permalink

New Year’s Bonfire

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A giant bonfire helped warm First Night crowds tonight on Westport’s Jesup Green. Temperatures were in the mid to upper 40s at the start of the evening but dropped to about 40 later on. First Night Westport Weston was only one of two First Nights tonight in the state. The other was in Hartford. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

   

12/31/15 07:15 PM Comments () • Permalink

New Year’s Dance

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A youngster enjoys the music of Vanessa Trien & The Jumping Monkeys today at Saugatuck Elementary School as part of the First Night entertainment. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

   

12/31/15 07:02 PM Comments () • Permalink

Balloon Lady

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Bibi Farber makes balloons for eager customers today at Saugatuck Elementary School as part of the First Night festivities. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

   

12/31/15 06:55 PM Comments () • Permalink

With a Little Help From Friends

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Audience members Nina and Alex helped ventriloquist Jonathan Geffner today in his Saugatuck Elementary show as part of First Night festivities for children. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

   

12/31/15 06:50 PM Comments () • Permalink

Riding Out 2015

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Downtown carriage rides have become a tradition in First Nights in Westport. A carriage made its way along Elm Street. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

   

12/31/15 06:42 PM Comments () • Permalink

Hoot Owls Entertain

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The Hoot Owls of the Y’s Men of Westport Weston entrained at Westport Town Hall tonight as part of the First Night celebrations. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

   

12/31/15 06:37 PM Comments () • Permalink

On Track at the Library

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“Dennis the Conductor (rear) oversees a train demonstration today in a First Night activity at the Westport Library’s McManus Room.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

   

12/31/15 04:36 PM Comments () • Permalink

Train Excitement

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A youngster points out a train to his dad at the Westport Library McManus Room today in one of the opening events of First Night. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

   

12/31/15 04:29 PM Comments () • Permalink

Opening First Night Entertainment

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UPDATE The Survivors Swing Band entertains today in the Great Hall of the Westport Library. It is a second appearance for the group at First Night Westport Weston and the first of a series of performers for the alcohol-free evening which this year will see fireworks set off at 7:30 p.m. on the Saugatuck River. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

   

12/31/15 03:02 PM Comments () • Permalink

Ready for Bonfire

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Wooden pallets are set up on Westport’s Jesup Green today in preparation for a First Night bonfire later in the day.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

   

12/31/15 02:52 PM Comments () • Permalink

Linda J. Edwards, 74

Linda Jean Edwards, a longtime resident of Westport and music and special education teacher in Westport and Weston, died Dec. 14 at St. Mary’s Medical Center in Galesburg, Ill. of metastatic carcinoma. She was 74.

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Linda Edwards: music and special ed teacher. Contributed photo

She was born Oct/ 8, 1941 in Monmouth, Ill., the daughter of Howard G. and Regena L. Miller. She graduated from Western Illinois University in 1963 with a bachelor’s degree in music. 

She married Larry L. Edwards on Dec. 26, 1965. He preceded her in death on Jan. 6, 1998. 

She was a music and special education teacher in the Westport and Weston schools for more than 30 years.  She was an active member with the United Methodist Church of Westport and Weston.

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12/31/15 02:35 PM Comments () • Permalink

Westport 2015 Year in Review: A Year of Change

By James Lomuscio

As the New Year is ushered in on Friday, it seems that ringing out the old and ringing in the new in Westport could not have more relevance and bittersweet poignancy.

WestportNow Year in Review 2015

From the loss of beloved citizens to the moving on of equally beloved town employees and educators to last calls at landmark restaurants to the loss of a longtime, after school bus service and the shooting down of a seven-year planned senior housing complex, the town had more than its share of change.

At the same time, there were a number of new beginnings, including the reopening of the historic Saugatuck Congregational Church to the start of the Bedford Square project to the completion and initial undertaking of a Downtown Master Plan.

As always, change is inevitable, even in the land of steady habits; however, in Westport the changes always seem to be tempered with deference to the town’s historic character.

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12/31/15 07:30 AM Comments () • Permalink

Thursday, December 31, 2015 - First Night


Westport Public Schools are closed. Westport Library closes at 5 p.m.
10 a.m. - 5 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - “DREAMscapes”
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Window to Westport’s Past & Present”
2 p.m. - Westport Library - Family Movie Special: “The Red Balloon”
3 p.m. - 10 p.m. - Various - First Night 2016 (more info)

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar

   

12/31/15 12:05 AM Comments Closed • Permalink

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Susan Granger at the Movies: 10 BEST for 2015

WestportNow film critic Susan Granger compiled her list of 10 BEST for 2015. They are listed alphabetically:

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PICTURE:

“Bridge of Spies” - Fact-based spy-swap story, set during the Cold War.
“Creed” - Re-birth of the “Rocky” legend for another generation.
“Ex Machina” - A scientist creates a remarkably life-like cyborg.
“Inside Out” - Pixar Animation delightfully details how our minds work.
“Mad Max: Fury Road” - Explosive, post-apocalyptic action epic.
“The Martian” - A rousing sci-fi adventure about an astronaut stranded on Mars.
“Son of Saul” - Holocaust drama set in the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp.
“Spotlight” - Boston Globe reporters expose the Catholic Church’s pedophilia cover-up.
“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” - Revival of the galactic, good vs. evil adventure.
“Trumbo” - Screenwriter Dalton Trumbo battles the Hollywood blacklist.

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12/30/15 08:10 PM Comments () • Permalink

Returns and Westport History

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Holiday return items were piled on the counter at Westport’s Banana Republic, 44 Main St., late today. Seen in the background are the quirky characters painted on a mural by New Milford artist Edmund Ashe, Jr. in the 1930s to decorate the wall behind a bar called Triangle Tavern, later Townly’s Restaurant. It suffered damage due to a fire in the 1950s and subsequently was covered with dry wall when Klein’s, a Main Street presence since 1937, expanded into the spot. In 1999, Klein’s leased the ground floor to Banana Republic and moved upstairs, finally closing for good in 2004. The mural was rediscovered during the Banana Republic renovation and restored. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Lynn U. Miller for WestportNow.com

   

12/30/15 07:23 PM Comments () • Permalink

Nicholas M. Albertson, 85

Nicholas Myers Albertson of Redding, a former Westport resident, died at age 85.

He was born March 23, 1930 in Rochester, N.Y. to Nicholas A. and Kathryn Albertson, their only child. After graduating from Brighton High School, he attended Cornell University, earning a bachelor’s degree from the ILR School in 1951, and went to work for the Union Carbide Corporation, retiring in 1993.

He married the love of his life, Dorothy Clark, in 1949, and they raised three sons in Fostoria and Cleveland, Ohio, before moving to Westport in 1965. After the boys were grown, the couple made their home in Redding until Dorothy’s untimely death as a result of lung cancer in 1992 and where Nick has lived ever since.

He was an active member of the Staples Booster Club while his sons attended Staples High School, and he and Dorothy were actively involved in the life of Emmanuel Episcopal Parish Church, Weston, for more than 50 years.

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12/30/15 04:22 PM Comments () • Permalink

Teen Essay Contest Focuses on Racially Charged Incidents

TEAM (Together Effectively Achieving Multiculturalism) and the Westport Library today announced its third annual high school essay contest on diversity.

The 1,000-word contest, open to all ninth through twelfth graders who reside in town, asks students to make sense out of the troubling, racially charged incidents from Charleston to Chicago over the past year.

Applications can be downloaded at http://www.teamwestport.org on Jan. 4, and completed essays are due Feb. 26.

Winners will be announced at a ceremony at the Westport Library on April 4, officials say, and first prize is $1,000, second prize $750 and third prize, $500.

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12/30/15 03:10 PM Comments () • Permalink

Metro-North Adds Extra Trains

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Westport’s Metro-North station platform was crowded with riders today waiting for the 10:37 a.m. to Grand Central Terminal. Metro-North said it was adding extra trains on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day to accommodate riders. It reminded travelers that no alcohol would be permitted on trains from noon on Thursday, New Year’s Eve, until noon Friday, New Year’s Day. It said on New Year’s Eve, tickets will be collected prior to boarding trains at Grand Central and advised riders to buy tickets in advance. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

   

12/30/15 11:31 AM Comments () • Permalink

Only One New Year’s Compo Plunge This Year

After double New Year’s Day “penguin plunges” at Westport’s Compo Beach for eight years, this year there will be only one.

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Team Mossman members and supported make the Compo plunge last Newy Year’s Day. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

Westport’s Temple Israel (TI) will sponsor its ninth “Freezin’ for a Reason” plunge at 11 a.m., this year to benefit the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter with a goal of raising $100,000.

The Team Mossman Triathlon Club, which has held a New Year’s Day plunge at the beach for 12 years to benefit Save the Children, this year did not apply for town permission for the event, said Robin Myers, event coordinator.

“The Westport municipality told us last year that it would not grant us the permit, as Save was moving out of Westport,” he said, referring to the charity’s 2014 move to Fairfield from its Wilton Road home since 1974.

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12/30/15 11:04 AM Comments () • Permalink

Real Estate Report: Available Inventory at Year Low

By Judy Szablak

Available housing inventory in Westport is at its lowest point for the year. However, that will all start to change in the first few months of 2016. 

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Featured Home: This home at 3 Rodgers Way is listed at $2,495,000. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Photo courtesy of Coldwell Banker Westport-Riverside

Part of this inventory shortage comes from the belief that buyers are not looking as earnestly as they would during other times of the year.

In fact, many homeowners wishing to sell remove their homes from the market during the holiday season and into January as well as February.

They wrongfully assume that it is not a good time to sell, and that they should wait for the Spring market.

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12/30/15 08:00 AM Comments () • Permalink

Wednesday, December 30, 2015


Westport Public Schools are closed
10 a.m. - 5 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - “DREAMscapes”
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Window to Westport’s Past & Present”
2 p.m. - Westport Library - Family Movie Special: “Inside Out”

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar

   

12/30/15 12:05 AM Comments Closed • Permalink

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