Saturday, April 20, 2024

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Last Day of Ice Skating Season Draws Crowd

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Skaters converged today on the Westport Police Athletic League (PAL) Ice Rink at Longshore Club Park on the final day of the season, which began in November. Looking at the large turnout, ice rink staff member Tony Lantier said, “We’re going out with a bang.”  Streaking across the photo is a reflection on protective glass in front of the photographer. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

Nursing Home Workers Back on Job

Workers at Westport Health Care and four other HealthBridge nursing homes returned to work today eight months after they went on strike over pensions and health care costs.

The striking workers from Service Employees International Union District 1199 were back on the job three months after a federal judge ordered the company to take the workers back at the wages and benefits in their contract.

Last week, the nursing homes filed for bankruptcy protection after the U.S. Supreme Court denied a request by Healthbridge to delay the court order to reinstate the 600 striking workers. (See WestportNow Feb. 25, 2013)

The company cited “unsustainable” pension and medical benefit costs for workers and said that unless HealthBridge terminates pension obligations and reduces its health insurance costs, the nursing homes will be forced to close.

Broadway Sounds and More at Senior Center

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Staples graduate Terry Eldh, at home on the stages of Broadway, opera houses, and concert halls, performed at the Westport Center for Senior Activities today.  She was Carlotta in the Broadway company of “The Phantom of the Opera,” and has enjoyed principal roles in “La Boheme,” “La Traviata,” “The Marriage of Figaro,” among other operas, throughout the United States and Europe. Eldh called Bill Meyer up to the mike in a tribute to him to sing “He’s Just My Bill” from “Showboat.” The performance was sponsored by the Mortimer and Mimi Levitt Foundation and programmed by the Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Andy Kaplan for WestportNow.com

Terry and Friends

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Joining Terry Eldh today at the Westport Center for Senior Activities were (l-r) Colombian tenor David Guzman, cellist Noah Hoffeld, both a player and composer, Frank Mastrone, a Bridgeport native who worked on “Phantom of the Opera” for many performances where he and Eldh met, and pianist maestro Steve Crawford. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com

Staples Tops at State Rube Goldberg Competition

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The Staples High School Applied Science Club took top honors Saturday at the statewide Rube Goldberg Competition at the University of Connecticut at Storrs. The team took first place for the second year in a row and also won two other awards.  Pictured are (l-r)  are Ben Shey, Noah Johnson, Neloise Egipto, and Megumi Asada.  Missing from the photo is Clay Andrews. Their innovative, video game-themed machine had the only first-time perfect run of the competition. The win entitles them to enter the Nationals in March and members are trying to raise funds for the trip to Wisconsin. A Rube Goldberg machine, named after the American cartoonist and inventor, is a deliberately over-engineered or overdone machine that performs a very simple task in a very complex, mechanical fashion, usually using common everyday items and including a chain reaction. This year, the simple task was to have a hammer hit a nail, and each machine had to take at least 20 (non-electronic) steps to do it. The Staples machine had 22 steps and involved, among other things, ramps and golf balls, levers and pulleys, a spring-loaded tape measure, marbles, jars, and many other common household items. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo