Community Channel: New pastor at United Methodist Church; Historical society hosts walking tour

The Rev. Heather Sinclair has been named the next pastor of the United Methodist Church of Westport and Weston.
The Rev. Heather Sinclair has been named the next pastor of the United Methodist Church of Westport and Weston.

Historical society walking tour

“In the Footsteps of Patriots: Kings Highway Tour,” offered on Saturday at 3 p.m. by the Westport Historical Society, is an opportunity for history buffs to learn about one of the town’s oldest settled areas and view some mid-1700s homes.

Originally, Kings Highway North was part of a postal road laid out between New York and Boston in 1762. Kings Highway North was established as a local historic district in 1972 and named to the National Register of Historic Places in 1998. It encompasses 106 “contributing buildings” — structures that add to the district’s historical qualities— and four historic sites. The historic sites include a small triangular green at the intersection of Old Hill Road and Kings Highway North that was used as a military drill ground.

Ed Gerber, past president of the historical society, will be accompanied on the tour by Edward Hynes, a specialist on the history of Westport during the American Revolution. Hynes will discuss the planned ambush by Continental troops under Benedict Arnold to fire cannons from the high ground on Old Hill down on British soldiers returning from a raid on Danbury, to prevent them from crossing the river on the bridge below. But the British outsmarted the Colonials and crossed upriver near the site of present Ford Road.

Marc Lotti has invited walkers to his home to see the ongoing restoration of his 17th century house, where he will offer updates on the process and the use of state grants. Two historic properties will be visited: the home of the first silent film cowboy star, William S. Hart, and the longtime home of author Van Wyck Brooks.

Walk participants are asked to meet on the green, across from the cemeteries at the foot of Old Hill Road; park along Kings Highway North. Suggested admission is $10 for members, $12 for nonmembers, free for children 12 and under.

Reservations are recommended. Register at or call 203-222-1424.

New pastor at United Methodist

The Rev. Heather Sinclair has been named the next pastor of the United Methodist Church of Westport and Weston, succeeding to the Rev. Ed Horne, who is retiring after serving as pastor of the church for the past 16 years. Sinclair’s first official Sunday service will take place on July 1.

Sinclair was born and raised a Methodist in Westford, Mass. She earned a bachelor’s degree in religion from Colgate University in Hamilton, N.Y. While there, she was involved in the ecumenical student congregation of University Church, which led to both her call to ordained ministry and meeting her husband, Skip. After graduation, Sinclair served with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps in Hartford, worked at Foodshare, the Greater Hartford Food Bank and Mercy Housing and Shelter Co.

Before and while attending Yale Divinity School, Sinclair was the youth director at Memorial United Methodist Church in Avon, and was a student intern at East Pearl Street UMC in New Haven. She holds a master’s of divinity degree and was ordained as an elder in full connection in the New York Annual Conference in 2007.

From 2003 to 2006, Sinclair served as the associate pastor for Nichols UMC in Trumbull. In 2006, she was appointed as the pastor of First UMC in Shelton. Most recently, Sinclair was the pastor of First UMC Greenwich.

Park inducted into honor society

Seulkee Park, of Westport, was recently initiated into the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi, the nation’s oldest and most selective collegiate honor society. Park was initiated at the University of Bridgeport.

Park is among approximately 30,000 students, faculty, professional staff and alumni to be initiated into Phi Kappa Phi each year. Membership is by invitation only and requires nomination and approval by a chapter. Only the top 10 percent of seniors and 7.5 percent of juniors are eligible for membership.

Dean’s list students

Yael Dror, of Westport, has been named to the spring dean’s list at the University at Albany.

Westport residents Samuel Agnew, Alice Hickson, Jillian Kleiner, Yevgeny Lensky, Kelly Pogue and Susan Zec were named to the Tufts University dean’s list for the spring semester.

Benjamin Lovewell and Joshua Rosenberg, both of Westport, have been named to the spring semester deans list at Roger Williams University in Rhode Island.

The following Westport residents have been named to the University of Delaware’s dean’s list for the spring semester: Julie Bender, Ashton Dedona, Natasja George, Caroline Keenan, Rachel Polin, Noah Schwaeber, Rachel Stanford and Alexis Wetmore.

Among the graduates

Caitlin Hartmann, of Westport, graduated cum laude with a bachelor’s degreee in business administration and marketing from Bryant University.

Westport residents Halie Smith, Deanna Baris and Cassondra Feldman graduated from Trufts University on May 20.

Tyler Scanlin, Foster Goldberg and John Ludy, all of Westport, graduated from Lehigh University on May 21.