The Westport Weston Chamber of Commerce has donated $7,000 to local dog-related nonprofits from proceeds from the highly successful Second Annual Westport Dog Festival held last month. Almost 3,000 people attended, many of them with their dogs.

This is an increase in funds donated from last’s year’s event, which saw an outlay in the amount of $4,500.

The donations were divided up among six deserving groups.

TAILS, the Westport nonprofit that partners with the Chamber in the running of the festival, received $4,000, an increase over last year.

Once again receiving $1,000 was the Westport Police K-9 unit, a privately funded addition to that department. They were joined by three other neighboring town’s K-9 units and gave two great demonstrations, which thrilled the crowd. The donation will

be used to help take care

of and train the hard-

working dogs.

The four other donations were each for $500.

One went to Fidelco Guide Dog Foundation in Wilton, who also gave a demonstration on their training techniques and the abilities of their dogs some of which are provided to wounded veterans.

The Emergency Animal Response Service, known as EARS, also received $500 and will go toward aiding distressed pets and wild animals. EARS gave a demonstration at the festival offering examples of their techniques and tours of their specially designed animal ambulance.

The Connecticut Humane Society, with a branch location in Westport, also received $500 to aid in the housing and feeding of many types of animals in need of adoption.

Adopt-a-Dog of Greenwich was the final recipient, once again receiving $500 as they did last year to aid in the their efforts to find loving families for dogs without homes.

Eco champions

In recognition for its work conserving 1,700 acres of open space land in Fairfield, Easton, Westport and Weston over the last 50 years, The Aspetuck Land Trust was awarded the 2017 Aquarion Environmental Champion Award in the nonprofit organization category.

The award was announced June 3 at the Beardsley Park Zoo in Bridgeport.

The presentation was made by U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn.

The awards recognize volunteer projects that have significantly contributed to the improvement of environmental quality through the protection, conservation, restoration and stewardship of Connecticut’s water, air, soils, and plant and wildlife habitats.

For its efforts, Aspetuck Land Trust received a $2,500 grant.

The land protected by the group provides a safe home for over 500 species of mammals, birds, amphibians, and plants and is accessible to the public for outdoor recreation and scientific education. Other notable accomplishments include a three-year project with Connecticut DEEP to restore salt marshes with native plants along the Saugatuck River and the maintenance of 40 miles of hiking trails along its 45 nature preserves.

Among the graduates

At its 216th commencement celebration the weekend of May 20 and 21, the University of Vermont in Burlington conferred degrees on an estimated 3,228 graduates, including eight Westport natives.

Joseph Becker graduated with a Bachelor of Science in community entrepreneurship; Noah Bender graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in business administration; Samuel Hammer graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in English; Kirk O’Halloran graduated with a Bachelor of Science in business administration; Julia Onorato graduated with a Bachelor of Science in business administration; Zachary Pensak graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in environmental studies; Rachel Samuels graduated with a Bachelor of Science in early childhood preschool; and Lily Zuckerman graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in sociology.

Andrew James Fox of Westport, graduated with a degree in accounting from James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Va. May 5.

Six Westport natives graduated from Union College in Schenectady, N.Y. June 11.

Matthew Fisher received a Bachelor of Arts in political science. Jesse Hahn received a Bachelor of Arts in political science. Lance Lonergan received a Bachelor of Arts in political science. Patricia Maragos received a Bachelor of Arts in economics. Rachel McDermott received a Bachelor of Arts in anthropology. Allison Michaelis received a Bachelor of Arts cum laude in sociology.

Get your beach pass

Parking emblems are required on all vehicles entering Westport beaches.

Parking emblems can be purchased at or at the Parks and Recreation Department office, Longshore Club Park, 260 Compo Road South, Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Career counseling

The Westport Library will be offering free one-on-one, career counseling sessions to local job seekers. The sessions will be by appointment only and will focus on general career counseling, as well as resume assistance and LinkedIn profile preparation assistance.

Patrons may schedule one-hour sessions on Mondays and Saturdays. To schedule an appointment, contact Ellen Janpol, the business librarian, at