Saturday, July 20, 2024

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State Grants Playhouse $125K to Improve Entrance

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The State Bond Commission, in its latest meeting, approved a $125,000 grant to improve the entrance to the Westport Country Playhouse. The Playhouse intends to enhance safety at the entrance on Post Road East by enlarging the two lanes as well as improving signage. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

Back to School Program Set for August

Westport Human Services Director Barbara Butler announced today that the Back to School Program offering school supplies to income-eligible families will run from Monday, Aug. 5 through Monday, Aug. 12.

“The program offers new backpacks and school supplies, as well as Athletic Shoe Factory and Payless gift cards, to income-eligible families with children in Westport,” said Butler. “As another successful school year comes to a close, we’re beginning our preparations to ensure that all students start next year off on the right foot.”

The Back to School program depends solely upon the generosity of community individuals and organizations.

Last year, 197 Westport students from 107 income-eligible families received back to school supplies as well as gift cards for a new part of school shoes, Butler said.

Kidnapping Suspects Arraigned

By James Lomuscio

Handcuffed together and under the watch of court officers, two kidnapping and robbery suspects arrested by Westport police Saturday appeared for arraignment today in Norwalk Superior Court.

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Andrew “Drew” Frank (l),21, of Stamford, and Peter Ferraro Jr., 24, of Norwalk at their arraignment today. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Cablevision-News 12 photo

Police said they kidnapped, robbed, assaulted and threatened to kill a man they gave a ride to early Wednesday from the East Norwalk train station and let him go in Westport. Police said the man had intended to get off in Westport but mistakenly got off in East Norwalk.

Judge William J. Wenzel ordered Norwalk resident Peter Ferraro, 24, who was on parole at the time of the alleged crimes, remanded to the Department of Corrections. He set a next appearance date of July 9 in Stamford Superior Court Part A, where more serious crimes are heard.

According to Westport Police Capt. Vincent Penna, Ferraro will remain locked up until his next court appearance. Penna said that even if Ferraro comes up with the $90,000 cash surety bond set by the judge, which is lower than the $150,000 the police had set, he will remain in jail is because he violated parole.

Comings & Goings: Java to Church Lane

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Java Coffee and Café will open around Labor Day at 44 Church Lane. Developer David Waldman said he recently formed a partnership with fellow Westporter Brad Burke and Idaho-based Todd Rippo, founder/owner of Java Coffee and Cafe to open Java’s first East Coast location. Waldman said the Westport menu will have a slight variation from the three Java locations in Idaho which feature breakfast, lunch, bakery and beverages. Waldman said salads would be added to the Westport menu and other items that appeal to local clientele. He said the 1,850-square foot location, formerly occupied by Wild Pear, is being renovated to convert the entrances to one level. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

Slimmed Down Ketchum Street Reopened

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Ketchum Street in Westport’s Saugatuck section has reopened with a makeover after six months. Sam Gault and Jim Donaher performed the celebratory ribbon cutting. Ketchum Street, which has lost much of its previous height in the reconstruction, is an integral part of the second phase of new mixed use Saugatuck Center being developed by the Gault family. As one of Westport’s oldest roads named for the Westport and New York financier Morris Ketchum, the Gaults thought it only fitting that the first car to drive over the reconstructed roadway was one that may be the future of travel—an all-electric Tesla Roadster. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Mary Kate Romano for WestportNow.com