Community News: First Selectman releases statement on mass shooting; and more

  First Selectman Jim Marpe made the a statement on Tuesday in the wake of the mass shootings last weekend in El Paso and Dayton:

“Following the tragic events in Charlottesville two years ago, I publically stated that ‘there is no place for hatred and bigotry in our country’ and expressed our community’s prayers for the victims of that senseless tragedy. Those events led to the ‘Hate Has No Home Here’ movement in Westport and other communities. Last year, after the Parkland, FL tragedy, I again addressed the issue of gun control and sensible gun legislation.

After another weekend of shocking headlines involving mass shootings which obviously have roots in white supremacy, and frankly, two more years of incidents similar to Charlottesville and Parkland, we are still faced with the challenge of inflammatory public rhetoric and hate-filled internet postings and activity. We are fortunate that Westport is represented by national, state and local legislators and elected officials who act and speak responsibly in the face of these divisive issues. They are committed to pursuing and enforcing responsible and effective gun control legislation as well as condemning the racial biases demonstrated by others.

The fact that these incidents are happening on a regular basis is appalling and each time I am asked to address them both personally and in my role as First Selectmen, it is done with an extremely heavy heart.

Although recent national incidents were much more horrific and tragic, the sentiment where I prompted a call to civility and respect to all Westporters after an unfortunate incident during a local public meeting last year holds true today. I stated, ‘We will continue to publicly deal with issues and challenges that ignite passions on all sides, but we can’t let those passions create an air of disrespect, intimidation and bullying. I implore all Westport residents to allow their personal and public interactions to be driven by respect, tolerance and a desire to coexist in a positive manner with all of our neighbors.’ I will continue to address this issue within our community, and I will continue to denounce any form of hatred, bigotry or cultural bias.”

  Daniela Karpenos, Alison Morrison and Anna Petrow graduated with bachelor’s degrees from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in May.

  Gabrielle Feinsmith, Alexandra Mignucci and John Schlater were named to the 2019 dean’s list at Union College in New York.

 On Aug. 3, the Westport Parks and Recreation Department sponsored the sixth race of the 2019 Road Runners Program with a 5.85-mile run starting at Compo Beach. Henry Reichard, of New Haven, won his first ever Road Runners race as he led 129 runners over the course with time of 34:38. The first woman to finish was Kate Pfeffer of Westport in 14th place with the time of 38:42.

Second and third place in Saturday’s race were awarded to Greg Vogt of Fairfield and Piotr Kostyk of Bethel with respective times of 35:18 and 36:03. Second and third places in the women’s division were awarded to Patricia Mulia of Brooklyn, N.Y. in 27th place and Erin Shreve of Stratford in 31st place with respective times of 43:07 and 44:00. Westport-Weston residents who finished in the top 10 were Tim Collins, fourth in 36:15,Scott Rose, fifth in 36:20, and David Allen, eighth in 36:32.

 More than 6,700 riders, including 15 residents from Weston and Westport, pedaled up to 192 miles in the Pan-Mass Challenge on Aug. 3-4, with the goal of raising $60 million for cancer research and patient care at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

Cyclists from 43 states and 12 countries convened in Massachusetts to participate in the PMC, taking on one of 12 routes, which passed through 47 towns and ranged from 25 to 192 miles.

Participants from Weston were William Lomas, Christopher Moore and Stephen Sander. Participants from Westport were Tina Cerrito, Mark Connelly, Ward Doonan, Marc Fischer, John Herrera, T Anthony Howell, Theodore Lundberg, Scot Parnell, Michele Parnell, Steve Rowland, Diana Torok and Bill Loftus.

 The banks of the Saugatuck River will once again be filled with cool tunes and smiling faces this Labor Day weekend when the Blues & Views Festival returns to Westport for the 12th consecutive year. Concert days are Aug. 31 and Sept. 1.

Attendees will see and hear some of the best blues, soul, rock and funk artists in the business including Anders Osborne, Lawrence, Neville Jacobs, The Main Squeeze, Flow Tribe, High & Mighty Brass Band, Southern Avenue, The Commonheart, Kat Wright, The National Reserve, Jake Kulak and the Lowdown, and Fairfield’s School of Rock, on the stage of Westport’s Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts.

  Courtney C. Brockwell and Mikaela M. O'Kelly graduated with bachelor’s degrees from the University of Rhode Island in May.

 Foundation Source, the nation’s largest provider of support services to private foundations, recently promoted Westport resident Jessica Donahue to its Strategic Alliances team.

In her new role, Donahue will be responsible for the company’s strategic alliance sales initiatives. This includes establishing and managing strategic alliances and positioning Foundation Source as a valued resource for advisory firms in the high-net-worth and ultra-high-net worth market.

  Daniel Edward Offutt III has gifted $500,000 to the Westport Arts Center. This gift comes as the Westport Arts Center expands its programming and readies for a grand opening at a new space on Newtown Turnpike.