Saturday, July 20, 2024


Westporter Debuts Film on YouTube

It’s been five years, but Westport writer and filmmaker Jarret Liotta is ready to debut his Westport-based murder mystery film. Image
Jarret Liotta: film was five years in making. Contributed photo

“Home Movie” will premier on YouTube at 9 p.m. on Saturday. Click HERE.

The feature-length dark comedy was shot entirely in Westport with the help of many different individuals, businesses and organizations.

“It’s the story of a young woman who comes home for her father’s funeral only to grow suspicious that her mother may have killed him,” says Liotta, who also contributes to WestportNow and other local publications.

Lamont Sets Provisional May 20 Openings

By Mark Pazniokas and Gregory Hladky

UPDATE Gov. Ned Lamont said today that his preliminary plan for easing COVID-19 restrictions would permit businesses to reopen to varying degrees on May 20, assuming the increased availability of testing and a continued reduction in hospitalizations and illnesses due to the novel coronavirus.

The governor said that hospitalizations fell for an eighth consecutive day, a key metric. But his advisers warned that social distancing and other protective measures would continue indefinitely to guard against a resurgence of a disease blamed for 2,257 deaths in Connecticut.

There were 933 new cases and 89 deaths recorded today, reminders that the state must stay on guard until the availability of a vaccine or more effective therapeutic options for a severe respiratory disease caused by a virus unknown a year ago.

“This is a virus which is very transmissible. This is a virus that’s not going to go away. It’s not going to go away even with our best public health prevention and control measures. We’re always going to have the threat of resurgence,” said Dr. Albert Ko, a Yale epidemiologist.

Westport COVID-19 Cases Up 4 at 238, Deaths Unchanged at 14

Westport’s COVID-19 case count was 238, up four, while the town death count was unchanged at 14, state officials said today.

Hospitalizations continued to fall statewide and in Fairfield County for the eighth straight day. Patients currently hospitalized with COVID-19 are 1,650 a decrease of 41. In Fairfield County, the number decreased by 26 to 565.

There are 11,294 cases in Fairfield County, up 309 and 810 deaths, up 36.

The state reported 27,700 laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19, up 933. There have been 2,257 deaths, up 89 in the past 24 hours. Patients tested for COVID-19 statewide are 97,133, up 2,315.

Letter: Salute to Nurses on National Nurses Day

To the Editor:

May 6th is National Nurses Day.  I invite the community to join with me in saluting the compassionate and committed nurses of Visiting Nurse & Hospice of Fairfield County who are working tirelessly on the frontlines of the pandemic in our local communities.

These dedicated professionals are caring for patients and families 24 hours a day, bringing healing and comfort to all, regardless of their financial circumstances or the extent of their clinical need.

We are grateful for the outpouring of community support for Visiting Nurse & Hospice of Fairfield County during the current crisis. This support honors our nurses by providing them with the vital resources they need including Telehealth equipment to supplement in-home visits with patients, personal protective equipment (PPE), and emergency funding to care for those who are unemployed, uninsured or underinsured. 

In this time of terrible uncertainty and profound challenges, now more than ever, we are grateful for the courage and caring of our skilled team of nurses.

Ken Edgar
Board Chair
Visiting Nurse & Hospice of Fairfield County

Westport PBA to Host PPE Drive

The Westport Police Department’s Police Benevolent Association announced today it is planning to host a Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) collection drive.

It will take place on Saturday, May 9 from 10 a.m to 2 p.m. in parking lot No. 1 of the Saugatuck Railroad Station located directly off of Park Street.

Volunteers will be accepting unopened and unused PPE items such as gloves, masks, gowns, face shields, hand sanitizer, bleach wipes, etc. as well as monetary donations, an announcement said. 

“All of the supplies collected and all money raised will directly benefit our local front line health care workers at both Westport EMS and Norwalk Hospital by providing them with this essential equipment needed in their continued fight against the COVID-19 virus,” it said.

Dorothy Smith, 95

Dorothy Byrde Smith of Westport died April 26. She was 95.

She was born and raised in the Pittsburgh area on Oct. 2, 1924 and spent her early years being very close to her grandfather, a Methodist minister. He was an enormous influence on her, and she spoke of him often in her aging years.

Dorothy married and had three children Barbara, Warren (Rick) and Gary.

She was always working with many different jobs such as a riveter during World War II, working for Westinghouse and eventually working for an optometrist in Oakland, Pennsylvania, retiring at the age of 65.

Marpe: Mask Wearing Guidelines in Works

Westport First Selectman Jim Marpe told a virtual meeting of the Westport Weston Chamber of Commerce today he expects to soon determine specific rules for wearing masks in public and other guidelines. Image
First Selectman Jim Marpe (2nd row, 2nd l) addressed Westport Weston Chamber of Commerce members via Zoom. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

He spoke a day after announcement that the town anticipates opening of the Longshore Golf Course and beach parking lots on May 15.

From a real estate perspective, Marpe said local Realtors report an increased interest and activity among New York residents who seek relocation to the suburbs in light of the coronavirus.

He also referred to “a marked increase” in applications for residential permits to build swimming pools because of concerns about potential restrictions related to use of such public services.

New Concession Wins Finance Board Approval

With unanimous approval from Westport’s Board of Finance Wednesday night, Larchmont, New York-based Upsilon Entertainment Group LLC seems poised to become the town’s next concessionaire. Final approval from the Board of Selectmen is expected.

The question, however, is when Upsilon will be able to open at Compo Beach in the former Joey’s by the Shore spot at the pavilion or at the Longshore Club Park Halfway House.

“It has built-in contingencies for this first rocky year,” said finance board member Lee Caney said today about shutdowns in the wake of the coronavirus.

Parks and Recreation Director Jennifer Fava, who presented the application to the finance board, had announced earlier Thursday that the town anticipated reopening Compo and Longshore on May 15, but with limited capacity, 50%, plus other restrictions.

Westport First Responders Face Added Risks, Challenges Amid Coronavirus

By James Lomuscio

The COVID-19 pandemic has presented special challenges to Westport’s first responders, especially Westport’s Emergency Medical Services (EMS). Image

The EMS unit had begun COVID-19 training and providing personal protective equipment (PPE) weeks before the coronavirus first appeared mid-March in town, Marc E. Hartog, EMS deputy director said today.

But the department’s procedures have intensified as the pandemic has grown to what Hartog has never witnessed in his 40 years working in EMS, both in New York City and Westport.

Currently, Westport has 234 COVID-19 cases and 14 recorded deaths.