Thursday, February 22, 2024

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Smith & Hawken Set for Westport Debut



Workers busily prepare for Tuesday’s 10 a.m. opening of Smith & Hawken, the newest arrival to Westport’s commercial scene. The California-based chain will open its 55th garden and home accessories store in the building formerly occupied by Kids Wear at 1045 Post Road East. The Westport store will be the third in Connecticut, in addition to one in New Canaan opened in 1995, and Glastonbury in 1999. WestportNow.com photos

Westport Awaits Latest No Child Left Behind Report With Nervousness

Theres a new report coming from ConnecticutҒs Department of Education on compliance with the No Child Left Behind law and Westport educators are nervous that Staples High School might be cited as in need of improvement.

Inklings, the Staples newspaper, reported in its latest issue that Staples had already been put on notice that it had failed the latest round of student achievement testing because not enough students had taken the test.

But Schools Supt. Elliott Landon told WestportNow the Inklings report was premature. We are still awaiting the official report,Ӕ he said.

Sandra Urist, chair of the Board of Education, said she had been told that whether Staples was in compliance depended on whether enough students who were required to take achievement tests actually did so.

It is my understanding that it could go one way or another,Ӕ she said.

In August, Bedford Middle School ended up on a state Education Department list of schools in need of improvement because one student did not take a test, according to Landon.

A spokesperson for the Education Department told WestportNow scores were to have been forwarded to schools and made public by Nov. 15.

They ran into problems and itӒs been delayed for a couple of weeks, she said.

ԓNo Child Left Behind affects Staples because state goals have not been achieved, according to the Inklings report.

ԓMany students at Staples have failed to meet the goals of the Connecticut standardized test known as the Connecticut Academic Performance Test. The actual test scores were not the problem.

The problem was that not enough students took the test, because some of them chose to protest against standardized testing.Ӕ

Westport Man Burned by Bogus Bidding for JFK Car

After receiving two dubious $1 million bids on the Internet, Westport antiques dealer John Reznikoff has changed the rules for bidding on a 1963 Lincoln Continental that John F. Kennedy rode in on the day he was shot. (See WestportNow Nov. 11, 2003)

Reznikoff, owner of University Archives on Richmondville Avenue, is offering the restored convertible on eBay. It had been listed with an option to “buy it now” for $1 million.

After two deals fell through, however, the sale was changed to allow bids only from preapproved buyers. That means interested buyers must contact Reznikoff before bidding. The new sale ends Dec. 10.

Kennedy used the white four-door convertible during a motorcade in Fort Worth on Nov. 22, 1963, before flying to Dallas.  It is being offered in conjunction with Southports Classic Car Gallery.

Martha Stewarts Westport Home to be Full of Christmas Trees

Martha Stewarts Westport Home to be Full of Christmas Trees
TheyҒll be plenty of twinkling lights in a certain home on Turkey Hill Road South this holiday season. Martha Stewart says she is putting a tree in every room of her Westport home.

Stewart, in Chicago recently to promote her branded products in Kmart, said when it comes to decorating for the holidays, too much isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

“I don’t like to restrain people,” she said, according to the Chicago Tribune. “If you want to look like Santa’s village, I’m all for it. To me, that’s part of the fun, whether it’s over the top or chic.”

The newspaper said two feather trees decorated with birds will adorn the porch of her home. A gold and silver metallic tree will grace the dining room. There will be a blue tinsel tree in the living room.

The library will feature bronze metallic. And her “major” real tree will be in the kitchen, decorated with giant sparkling paper ornaments.

“I found French cards of puppet figures,” Stewart said. “I color copied them, cut them out, put them on adhesive cardboard backing, covered them with silvery black glitter and attached ribbons in different colors.”

She told her Chicago audience that last weekend the outside of her Westport home already was decorated—for photography. She has lighted wreaths in each of her 34 windows.

“I wanted to do swags along my front walk,” she said later. “But I didn’t know how to attach them—there was nothing but pachysandra.

“I found these wonderful iron stanchions—they’re also called bollards. We put them up along the wide brick walk to the front door and wrapped with lighted evergreen garlands, all along the path.

“On the front door is a giant wreath filled with fruits, eucalyptus, berries, pomegranate, boxwood Douglas fir, a kind of gray balsam and chamaecyparis pisifera [a chartreuse evergreen otherwise known as `Golden Mop’].”

This year, Stewart said she will be entertaining, but “not very much.”

“It will be quiet,” she said. “I always have a Christmas Eve gathering, with all of my closest friends.” She will serve stuffed cabbage and potato pancakes (acknowledging her Polish roots), with country ham, eggnog and cookies, all laid out on her kitchen counter.

“It’s an open house,” she said.

Food Drive Wraps Up


Members of the Westport Volunteer Emergency Medical Service Explorer Post work on their last load of their holiday food drive today at Shaw’s Supermarket. They are Zack Klomberg, Kim Roberts, and James Gray. The joint effort with the Westport Police Benevolent Association on behalf of the Connecticut Food Bank collected more than 3,300 pounds of food for the needy. WestportNow.com photo