Monday, December 11, 2023


Service for Stanley Bleifeld Set for April 15 Image
Stanley Bleifeld: died of head injury. Helen Klisser During / WN photo
A memorial service for noted sculptor Stanley Bleifeld of Weston will be held Friday, April 15, at 2 p.m. at Westport’s Unitarian Church, a family friend said today.

Bleifeld, 86, died Saturday following a fall four days earlier at his home. (See WestportNow March 26, 2011)

Some of his sculpture will be on view in the reception area of the church at 10 Lyons Plains Road.

Bleifeld’s well known works are on display in Washington, D.C., the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y., and numerous other U.S. locations as well as in Scotland and in Italy, where he spent part of every year.

USPS Rejects Protest of Move to Playhouse Square

First Selectman Gordon Joseloff said today he has received a letter from the U.S. Postal Service which essentially rejects the town’s protest of its selection of Playhouse Square for a new Main Post Image
A photo in postal archives shows the Westport Post Office under construction in 1935. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) U.S. Postal Service photo

“The U.S. Postal Service has done a disservice to the town and its residents by selecting a buyer for the present building who is unwilling to accommodate a smaller postal retail operation in its plans,” Joseloff said.

In a March 23 letter to Joseloff, Joseph J. Mulvey, a U.S.P.S. real estate specialist, said the present Westport Post Office at 154 Post Road East was one of the properties considered for the new location.

“However, the purchaser of the property has plans for the property which do not include space for the Postal Service within the building,” he said.

Arts Center Names New Exec Director

The Westport Arts Center (WAC) has named Peter A.H. Van Heerden, a South African educator in the performance arts and himself a much talked about performance artist, as its new executive director effective July 1. Image
Peter Van Heerden: “honored and excited” in new position. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

He succeeds Nancy Heller, who stepped down from the position in January to spend more time with her teenage children. (See WestportNow Oct. 27, 2010)

Van Heerden brings to the Westport Arts Center 14 years experience as an educator in the performing arts, 12 years as an artistic director and two years as a development director, an announcement said. It said he recently moved to Westport from South Africa. 

”We strongly believe that in Peter we have found an executive director who possesses the interpersonal and leadership qualities necessary to lead the Arts Center staff, partner with the board and make strong connections within our community,” said Lance Lundberg, WAC board president. 

A Glimpse of Westport Police Training Rarely Seen

By Dave Matlow

A sandwich board sign outside a home on Westport’s Hidden Hill, yellow police tape, and some police cars are the only indication something unusual is going Image
Dressed in protective gear, police officers (l-r) Casey Mezerewski and Erin Shaw prepare for a simulated exercise with Officer Sean Kelly. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Inside, police wear Darth Vader-like helmets and move cautiously as they repeatedly simulate what to do when the unexpected happens.

Welcome to the Westport Police Department’s special tactical training. The simulated exercises are taking place this week in the soon-to-be-demolished home off Compo Road South.

According to Police Captain Sam Arciola, the range of training scenarios includes domestic disturbances, communicating with emotionally disturbed persons and uncooperative people, and utilizing various communication skills to defuse a situation.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

10 a.m. – 4 p.m. – Westport Historical Society – “The Sketch Class: A Westport Tradition” and “Art From The Heart”
10 a.m. – 4 p.m. – Westport Arts Center – “Hope in Haiti” & SHS “Dog Show”
10 a.m. – 1 p.m. – Gilbertie’s (7 Sylvan Lane) – Westport Winter Farmers Market (last one)
6 p.m. – 9 p.m. – Inn at Longshore (260 Compo Road South) – “A Soulful Evening” with Aaron Neville & his quintet benefit for New Beginnings Family Academy
7 p.m. – Town Hall Room 309 – Sherwood Mill Pond Committee
7:30 p.m. – Westport Public Library – An Evening with Two Award-winning Authors/Illustrators: Maira Kalman and Rick Meyerowitz

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar

Garbage Talk Image
A full house filled the McManus Room at the Westport Public Library tonight to hear a Green Village Initiative (GVI) talk on garbage. Westport Director of Public Works Steve Edwards explained single stream recycling, which starts in Westport on July 1, and Deepika Saksena talked about her experiences living “the zero garbage lifestyle.” Other speakers included Fairfield University Professor David Brown and The Hickories’ Organic Farmer Dina Brewster. The event was moderated by Melissa Kane. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

Captured Westport NYT Journalists Back Home

By Dave Matlow

UPDATE Tyler Hicks and Lynsey Addario, the two Westport natives held in captivity in Libya for six days earlier this month while photographing the fighting there for The New York Times, have returned to the United States with Hicks spending some time recuperating in Image
The New York Times website tonight featured video interviews with the freed journalists who on Thursday will appear on other national media to tell their stories about their capture. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) photo

Hicks arrived in New York last Thursday and was in Westport from Saturday until returning to New York today, his sister, Westporter Darcy Koskoff, said. Addario said she arrived in New York on Tuesday and plans to come to Connecticut this weekend to visit her mother Camille who lives in Fairfield.

Both will appear in national media interviews from New York on Thursday. (Click here for a report on their “Today” show appearance and here for the video.)

“It’s difficult for me to put my family through what I do,” Addario said today by telephone from New York. “I feel bad a lot. I grapple with that one. But this is what I do.”

Westport YouTube Bullying Girl: ‘It’s So Weird’

UPDATE Alye Pollack, the 13-year-old Westport girl who made a plea for help from bullying in a YouTube video said today she has been overwhelmed by the more than 50,000 views it has Image
Alye Pollack said in her first television interview today since posting her YouTube video that she had expected “like 200 views at most.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) photo from WTNH-TV

“It’s so weird,” Alye told New Haven’s WTNH-TV in an interview. “I originally thought it would get like 200 views at most. This is just crazy.”

WTNH quoted her as saying the video has helped her cope with bullying and she is glad she did it. So is her mother, Audra Kruk, who also spoke to the television station.

“This is not a type of discussion in most homes,” the mother said, “and I am very excited that today I do believe that at least in our community, it is a topic of discussion.”

Tea for Two Groups in Westport for Cindi Bigelow

It will be a busy week in Westport next week for Cindi Bigelow, president of Fairfield-based Bigelow Image
Cindi Bigelow: Guest of Rotary and Y’s Men. Contributed photo

On Tuesday, she will be guest speaker at the Westport Rotary Club at noon at the Inn at Longshore and on Thursday she will be guest speaker at at the Y’s Men of Westport/Weston at 10 a.m. at the Saugatuck Congregational Church.

The U.S. market leader in specialty teas, Bigelow Tea remains a family owned and operated business. The company employs 330 and produces in excess of 1.5 billion tea bags annually at its three manufacturing facilities.

Bigelow has been president of the company since 2005 after joining it in 1986 in the financial department. She holds degrees from Boston College and the Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management.

Slow Go on I-95 Southbound Image
Two incidents in the southbound lanes of I-95 today backed up traffic in Westport. Drivers escaped serious injury in a two-vehicle accident near Exit 16 in Norwalk that brought response from both Westport and Norwalk firefighters. In a a separate incident, approximately 100 yards away, Westport EMS tended to a driver who experienced a physical ailment and was transported to Norwalk Hospital, according to Assistant Fire Chief Larry Conklin. He said there was no apparent connection between the two incidents. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for