Friday, April 18, 2014
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Friday, April 18, 2014

Mill Pond Dawn

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Dawn breaks over Westport’s Sherwood Mill Pond. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Mark Molesworth for WestportNow.com

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Friday,  April 18, 2014


10 a.m. - 5 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - “Abstract Notes” & “Solos 2014”
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Cover Story: The New Yorker in Westport” & “Can’t Tell a Book by its Cover ... “
3 p.m. - 5 p.m. - Westport Library - Drop-in Tech Help
8 p.m. - Town Hall - Westport Community Theatre: “Souvenir”
8 p.m. - MTC MainStage Studio Theatre - “The Fantasticks”

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar

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Thursday, April 17, 2014

Guest Opinion: In Praise of David Royce

By Linda Hall

A few days after I heard that David Royce had died, I opened a book and read, in the first sentence of an essay, “It’s almost always a mistake not to speak of the dead, especially when one has good things to say.”

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The cover of a program distributed at David Royce’s Town Hall memorial service on April 9. Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

I do have good things to say; mainly I’d like to take exception to a breezy assessment Royce once offered of himself. “I have a personality problem,” he told Dan Woog in the 1980s. “When I get up to speak I sound like an insufferable, arrogant pain in the neck. Hell, I would never invite me over for dinner.”

Almost 20 years ago, when I was not long out of college and working for a magazine in New York, I invited myself over to David Royce’s backyard. I was doing a story on Westport and told Royce that I needed him in it. True enough, but I was also happy to have an excuse to talk to him. I had been aware of him practically my whole life. (We came to town the same year—he as a grown man, I as a newborn.) 

My mother always referred to him as just plain Royce, and I needed to hear that single syllable only a few times to understand that she thought him, in a worthwhile way, something else. Long before Google, she was like Google Alert. “Today’s Westport News,” she’d say. “Royce.” And I’d go and read something by him, or about him.

More "Guest Opinion: In Praise of David Royce"

04/17/14 10:22 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

CT Senate Expands Patients’ End-of-Life Care Options

By Arielle Levin Becker

www.ctmirror.org

The Senate today passed a bill that would establish a process for people with terminal illnesses to document the sort of end-of-life care they want in a medical order for health care providers to follow. People who work in emergency medicine say it’s needed to address shortcomings in the options people currently have for making their wishes known.

The measure, which Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has indicated he supports, now goes to the House.

What does the bill do?

The bill would let the state Department of Public Health create a pilot program for the use of “medical orders for life-sustaining treatment,” or MOLST, a process in which terminally ill patients discuss their options with a health care provider, determine the type of end-of-life care they want, and document it in a medical order.

Patients would be able to outline choices that include whether they would want only treatment that provides comfort, limited interventions such as antibiotics, or full treatment that could include intubation and intensive care.

Click here for more of story

04/17/14 08:22 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Staples Baseball Edges Greenwich 2-1

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The Staples High School baseball team today edged Greenwich 2-1 in a nine-inning thriller played out on a cold, windy day at home. Greenwich senior Kyle Dunster matched Staples ace Rob Vallone, each throwing six innings of one-run, eight-strikeout baseball. The game ended on a walk-off fly ball hit by senior catcher Adam Dulsky (above) that was misplayed by the Greenwich center fielder, allowing second baseman Zack Azadian to score. The Wreckers improved to 4-1 overall and 4-0 in conference. Rob Chasin for WestportNow.com

04/17/14 07:21 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Westport Head of NCC Settles Ethics Allegations

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David Levinson: settles to avoid “lengthy and costly legal proceedings.” Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

Westporter David L. Levinson, president of Norwalk Community College (NCC), has paid a civil penalty of $3,000 to settle allegations involving his wife’s attendance or registration at events using state funds.

The state’s Office of State Ethics said today the allegations involved four charity and social events in 2010 held for the benefit of entities other than NCC.

It said Levinson, in violation of state statutes, authorized the use of state funds that had previously been granted to NCC by the Norwalk Community College Foundation, a private foundation that is affiliated with NCC.

In a consent order, Levinson, 59, who has headed NCC since August 2004, denied that his actions violated the Code of Ethics. He said that he believed that the foundation was aware that he was authorizing funds for his wife’s attendance at events and had approved. He agreed to resolve the matter to avoid what he believed would be “lengthy and costly legal proceedings,” the Office of State Ethics said in a news release.

04/17/14 06:22 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

A Visit From a U.S. Senator

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U.S. Sen. Christopher Murphy (D-CT) stopped by the Westport Arts Center today to help with preparations for the Arts Center’s upcoming fundraiser WONDERland, being held on April 26. WONDERland will honor Westporter Ann Sheffer as the “Queen of Arts for her unwavering commitment to the arts.” Tickets on sale now at westportartscenter.org and (203)222-7070. Pictured (l-r) WAC Executive Director Peter Van Heerden, Murphy, and WAC Board Member Doug Tirola in the Westport Arts Center gallery where “SOLOS 2014” is currently on exhibit. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Marina White for WestportNow.com

04/17/14 04:11 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

GOP Budget Scraps Malloy’s Gimmicks, Rebate

By Keith M. Phaneuf

www.ctmirror.org

Minority Republican state legislators today pitched an alternative budget that weeded hundreds of millions of dollars out of gimmicks from Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s plan and canceled the governor’s controversial rebate.

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State Sen. Robert Kane, House and Senate GOP leaders Lawrence F. Cafero and John P. McKinney (l-r) and other Republican legislators (background) unveil their budget plan for 2014-15. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Ctmirror.org photo

But while the GOP plan also offers tax modest relief for consumers, businesses and retirees, it raises $120 million in taxes on working poor families and scraps $45 million in new assistance for the merged public college system.

“This is an honest approach that eliminates the ugly gimmicks and ‘techniques’ that have been employed (by Malloy and the Democratic majority) to balance the budget only on paper,” said House Minority Leader Lawrence F. Cafero, R-Norwalk.

“Reversing the negative impact of years of gimmick-filled tax-and-spend budgets passed by the Democrats won’t happen overnight,” added Senate Minority Leader John P. McKinney, R-Fairfield. “But we have to start somewhere. This is a responsible step in that direction.”

Click here for more of story

04/17/14 03:55 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Acqua Seeks Pop-Up Dining for Third Summer

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The Westport Board of Selectmen on Wednesday will hear an application for a return of pop-up dining at Acqua Ristorante Mediterraneo overlooking the Saugatuck River and the Parker-Harding Plaza area. It will be the third year for outdoor dining for the restaurant. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

04/17/14 03:47 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

House OKs $400M Tax Break for UTC Expansion

By Keith M. Phaneuf and Jacqueline Rabe Thomas

www.ctmirror.org

Connecticut moved one step closer today toward providing up to $400 million in tax breaks to United Technologies Corp. to trigger a major UTC investment in its research, training and corporate facilities.

The state House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved a bill to implement the deal, which was negotiated by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s administration and hailed as an essential move to preserve Connecticut’s aerospace and engineering knowledge base. It now goes to the Senate, where it is expected to pass.

And while the measure, which passed 134-4, drew broad support from both parties, minority Republicans cited the hefty cost to the state as a sign that Connecticut’s business climate – and particularly its tax structure – has become very unfriendly.

“The purpose of this bill is to be a jobs-retention bill,” said Rep. Patricia Widlitz, D-Guilford, co-chairwoman of the tax-writing Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee.

Click here for more of story

04/17/14 02:59 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Metro-North President at Westport Train Forum April 24

The new president of Metro-North, Joseph Guilietti, and Department of Transportation Commissioner James Redeker will answer questions from Westport commuters on Thursday, April 24, at 7:30 p.m. at the Westport Metro-North eastbound station house.

Members of the state legislature’s Transportation Committee, including Sen. Toni Boucher and Rep. Jonathan Steinberg, who represent Westport, will be on hand along with members of the Connecticut Rail Council, according to an announcement by Steinberg.

The forum will feature an update on Metro-North’s operations, as outlined in its 100 Days Plan, the announcement said. Additionally, there will be a public comment period.

It will be Guiletti’s first visit to Westport since taking over as Metro-North president in February.

04/17/14 12:40 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

All Gone: Blight Property at 17 Wake Robin Road

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The house at Westport’s 17 Wake Robin Road, off Greens Farm Road, subject in February to a blight finding by Westport’s Blight Prevention Board, has been demolished. (See WestportNow, Feb. 20, 2014 and Feb. 18, 2014) A neighbor said the panel’s finding culminated an eight-year effort to get the town to move on the property. Built in 1950, the one-story ranch had 2,190 square feet and was situated on a 1.01-acre lot. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

04/17/14 11:45 AM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

WestportNow Teardown of the Day: 15 Blue Ribbon Drive

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An application for a permit to demolish the house at Westport’s 15 Blue Ribbon Drve, off North Avenue, is in process. Built in 1959, the one-story split has 1,872 square feet and is situated on a 1.01-acre property. Because the house was built more than 50 years ago, the application will be reviewed by the Westport Historic District Commission. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

04/17/14 10:32 AM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Westporter Lasry Buys Milwaukee Bucks

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Marc Lasry addressing a Milwaukee news conference on Wednesday. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo from nba/bucks.com

Marc Lasry, the hedge fund titan who has a home in Westport’s Greens Farms area along with a Manhattan apartment, says he will be spending “a huge” amount of time in Milwaukee in the future.

Lasry, who is on Westport’s top 10 taxpayer list, and fellow financier Wesley Edens on Wednesday bought the Milwaukee Bucks professional basketball team for about $550 million from former U.S. Senator Herb Kohl. The purchase is subject to NBA approval, which is expected.

Lasry, whose specialty is investing in distressed companies, will feel at home with the Bucks. The team will finish the regular season with the NBA’s worst record and lowest home attendance.

Lasry and Edens agreed to keep the team in Milwaukee, which has only won one NBA title, in 1970-71. The Bucks reached the finals for the last time in 1974, losing to the Boston Celtics.

04/17/14 09:26 AM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Frost Advisory for Tonight

The National Weather Service has issued a frost advisory for Westport and area from 1 a.m. to 9 a.m. Friday.

It said temperatures will be in the mid-30s.

A frost advisory means that frost is possible. Sensitive outdoor plants may be killed if left uncovered, the Weather Service said.

04/17/14 08:57 AM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Morning Mallard

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A morning mallard on Westport’s Sherwood Mill Pond. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Mark Molesworth for WestportNow.com

04/17/14 12:15 AM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Thursday,  April 17, 2014


10 a.m. - 5 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - “Abstract Notes” & “Solos 2014”
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Cover Story: The New Yorker in Westport” & “Can’t Tell a Book by its Cover ... “
2 p.m. - Westport Library - “April in Paris” Movie Series: “Les Choristes (The Chorus)”
8 p.m. - Town Hall - Westport Community Theatre: “Souvenir”

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar

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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Public Invited to Meet Golf Maintenance Company

Westport residents will have an opportunity Monday, April 21, to meet principals of the maintenance company that aims to upgrade Longshore Club Park’s 18-hole course while saving the town $755,450 over three years, Parks & Recreation Director Stuart McCarthy has announced.

Calabasas, Calif.-based ValleyCrest Landscape Companies has a three-year contract that became effective Jan. 1 following unanimous approval in November by the Board of Selectmen in its final meeting with former First Selectman Gordon Joseloff and Selectman Shelly Kassen and Charles Haberstroh as members. The savings is attributed to personnel attrition, according to McCarthy.

“This is an opportunity for Longshore’s golfers to meet the team at ValleyCrest and hear its plans for Longshore,” McCarthy said. “ValleyCrest is a leader in the industry and we are excited to welcome them to Longshore.”

Scheduled to be at the meeting set for 7 p.m. in the Town Hall auditorium are John Crowder, ValleyCrest’s vice president of business development, Terry McGuire, the company’s national director of operations, and Ryan Segrue, golf course superintendent. McCarthy added that Todd Bunnell, ValleyCrest’s director of agronomy, and Vince Gilmartin, northeast director of maintenance operations, will also be present to discuss current course conditions and future plans.

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Himes Outpaces GOP Rivals in Campaign Fundraising

By Ann Radalet

www.ctmirror.org

Washington—Rep. Jim Himes, D-4th District, has outpaced his GOP rivals in campaign fundraising, pulling in $367,000 in the first three months of 2014. His campaign reported more than $1.4 million in cash on hand March 31.

Republican challenger Dan Debicella, who began fundraising in the fall, raised nearly $205,000 in the first quarter of the year and ended the reporting period with $346,552 in his campaign coffers, the latest filings with the Federal Election Commissions shows. Although that’s much less money than Himes’s campaign has on hand, it’s enough for Debicella to mount a vigorous campaign.

Former Republican Rep. Nancy Johnson, who represented the 5th District until being unseated by now-Sen. Chris Murphy, donated $250 to Debicella’s campaign, and Steve Obsitnik, who ran unsuccessfully against Himes two years ago, gave $500.

But so far, none of the GOP gubernatorial candidates have donated or even endorsed Debicella, although Shelton Mayor Mark Lauretti did before joining the race to unseat Gov. Dannel P.Malloy.

Click here for more of story

04/16/14 07:56 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Another Freeze Warning Tonight

The National Weather Service has issued a freeze warning for Westport and area from 2 a.m. to 10 a.m. Thursday.

It said temperatures will be in the lower 30s.

A freeze warning means below freezing temperatures are imminent or highly likely.

These conditions will kill crops and other sensitive vegetation, the Weather Service said.

04/16/14 06:05 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

McKinney Promises ‘Deference’ to Gun-Control Repeal

By Mark Pazniokas

www.ctmirror.org

Sen. John P. McKinney, a Republican who helped pass a bipartisan gun-control law after the Newtown school massacre in his district, tells a conservative audience in a video Democrats posted today that he would not block the law’s hypothetical repeal if elected governor.

McKinney, one of six candidates for the GOP nomination [and whose district includes part of Westport], made the statement Tuesday night to the Quiet Corner Tea Party Patriots voters in northeastern Connecticut, where the Newtown law is seen as an overreach by many voters.

In a video posted by Democrats, who routinely send a video tracker to record Republican candidates at public events, McKinney was asked by someone off camera how he would react to a repeal bill: “If you were elected governor, would you sign that?”

“If the legislature repeals something I think the governor owes great deference to what the legislature does, and I would,” McKinney said.

Click here for more of story

04/16/14 03:38 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Real Estate Report: All the Home’s a Stage

By Judy Szablak

The importance of staging your home for sale has clearly become more apparent to savvy Westport home sellers. They have begun to understand the importance of maximizing their property’s value by having it “staged” for sale.

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This home at 55 Valley Road is listed at $1,549,000. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Photo courtesy of Coldwell Banker,  Darien

Staging your home is not only about de-cluttering, and removing personal effects. But also rearranging furniture for better placement, and adding or replacing decor in order to create atmosphere. This can be quite beneficial in a sparsely decorated or vacant home.

This is a wonderful tool long known to new homebuilders who often stage their properties to create a pleasant environment, and effect a sale more quickly. 
Homes of all price ranges benefit from proper staging. Many agents offer basic staging services, while others offer more elaborate staging techniques for more unique and/or luxury properties.

Buyers purchase on emotion. When they see a home that is assembled with stylish decor, they imagine their own furnishings as being just as beautiful. And they often will pay more as they can envision the home as their own much more easily,

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04/16/14 11:31 AM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Wednesday, April 16, 2014


10 a.m. - 5 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - “Abstract Notes” & “Solos 2014”
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “Cover Story: The New Yorker in Westport” & “Can’t Tell a Book by its Cover ... “
4 p.m. - Westport Library - ChessClub (grades K-12)
6:30 p.m. - Westport Library - Chess Club for Adults
7 p.m. - Town Hall Room 201/201A - Conservation Commission (live coverage cable channel 79, AT&T channel 99, and westportct.gov)
7:30 p.m. - Town Hall Room 100 - Probate Judge Lisa Wexler: What Does a Conservator Do?

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar

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Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Dallas Brass Performs at Staples on April 23

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Staples High School’s music department invites the Westport community to a special concert by the Dallas Brass on Wednesday, April 23, at 7 p.m. in the Staples auditorium. The event is being held in collaboration with the Westport PTA Cultural Arts Committee, Staples Music Parents Association, and Coleytown and Bedford Middle PTAs. Tickets are $5 at the door. Westport’s grades 8-12 band students will perform with the ensemble on one piece at the concert. Formed in 1983, the Dallas Brass has established a unique blend of traditional brass instruments with a full complement of drums and percussion. Its repertoire includes classical masterpieces, Dixieland, swing, Broadway, Hollywood and patriotic music. Contributed photo

04/15/14 10:42 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Two Years Probation for Clothing Boutique Owner

The owner of Westport woman’s boutique clothing store Dress Code was sentenced to two years probation today in Norwalk Superior Court after admitting she ordered merchandise for a competitor, Winged Monkey, where she once worked.

Mary Perkins, 53, of Norwalk pleaded guilty to criminal impersonation and second-degree harassment, according to The Hour. Arrested last month (see WestportNow March 5, 2014), she was ordered to have no contact with Winged Monkey owners Joel and Cathy Vogel, not to post anything about the store on the Internet, and to remove her Facebook postings related to the store.

Court documents show Perkins, owner of the store at 578 Post Road East, said she sent the e-mail “out of frustration and stupidity.” She told police that she worked for the Winged Monkey, 384 Post Road East, three years ago and had “ongoing issues” with its owners, police said.

The harassment charge was added to her initial arrest for criminal impersonation after learning that Perkins had posted a Facebook message, stating that the Winged Monkey was closing, The Hour said.

04/15/14 09:13 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Politics and Policy: Malloy Announces Transportation Improvements

By Mark Pazniokas

www.ctmirror.org

Waterbury – Gov. Dannel P. Malloy flexed the powers of incumbency today in a rain-swept commuter lot by I-84. Malloy couldn’t stop the rain, but he could command a supportive audience of political, union and business leaders.

WestportNow.com Image
Gov. Dannel P. Malloy slips on a DOT rain slicker today. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Ctmirror.org photo

One after another, they stepped to a microphone to thank the first-term Democratic governor, a candidate for re-election this year, for planned investments in transportation infrastructure, even if the pace of those investments has been a source of frustration to some on his guest list, who see a growing backlog of overdue projects.

The event was staged by one of the state’s most notorious commuter bottlenecks, a two-lane, 2.7-mile stretch of I-84 on the approach to Waterbury from the east. A third lane will be added in both directions at an estimated cost of $400 million to $450 million, with the project going to bid in June. [Other announced improvements were rehabilitation of the Merritt Parkway in Stamford and operational improvements on I-95 in Norwalk.]

“Connecticut is moving again,” Malloy said.

Click here for more of story

04/15/14 06:36 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Surf’s Up

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Heavy rains and winds made for a heavy surf today off of Westport’s Compo Beach. Weather stations reported about .40 inches of rain has fallen since midnight. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Bob Eckman for WestportNow.com

04/15/14 05:21 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Two-Car Crash Sends One to Hospital

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UPDATE A two-car crash today in the area of Westport’s 1700 Post Road East at Westfair Drive injured one person and tied up traffic in the area. Witnesses said both vehicles, each with only a male driver, were traveling east when they both turned left into a shopping strip and collided. One man was taken by Westport EMS to Norwalk Hospital. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

04/15/14 04:41 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

Freeze Warning Issued

The National Weather Service has issued a freeze warning for Westport and area from 2 a.m. to 10 a.m. Wednesday.

It said temperatures will be in the upper 20s to around freezing.

A freeze warning means below freezing temperatures are imminent or highly likely.

These conditions will kill crops and other sensitive vegetation, the Weather Service said.

04/15/14 04:32 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon

WestportNow Teardown of the Day: 28 Roseville Road

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An application for a permit to demolish the house at Westport’s 28 Roseville Road is in process. Built in 1953, the one-story ranch has 1,090 square feet, is situated on a .77-acre property and changed ownership last month for $556,000. Because the house was built more than 50 years ago, the application will be reviewed by the Westport Historic District Commission. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

04/15/14 04:25 PM Comments (0) • Permalink Digg Favicon Email Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon TwitThis Favicon
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