New life for old Longshore trees unveiled today
A bench made from the towering trees cut down last January at Longshore Club Park will be unveiled today (Monday, Nov. 10) at the Westport Library.
The 2 p.m. public ceremony will feature the hand-crafted bench from trees that once lined the entrance to the town park, First Selectman Jim Marpe said in a news release on the event.
Furniture artist Zeb Essylstyn from City Bench, which constructed the bench, will be on hand to discuss the project and answer questions.
Three pieces have been created: two tables and a bench. The tables are on display in Town Hall's lobby and the bench at the library.
All of the furnishings are available for sale to the public.
The town plans to create more furniture in the future, with a portion of the sale proceeds going to the town's Tree Fund to support future tree planting.
The mature trees were cut down, amid some controversy, in January after the tree warden determined they had begun to pose a threat to public safety.
"The issue proved emotional for many in town because the trees were considered a Westport landmark, especially given their representation in the iconic photograph by renowned Westport photographer Larry Silver," Marpe said in the statement.
"Rather than dumping the logs into a landfill or grinding them into mulch, the beautiful wood from these trees has been repurposed and turned into tables and other furniture pieces. These pieces with their beautiful grain and color will live on in Westport and provide joy and beauty for generations to come," he said.
The Westport Library's exhibit, "Re-Purposing Westport's Trees," will be on display during November in the copy center area, along with City Bench's repurposed wood bench.