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Westport – What more needs to be said about this iconic southcoast town! Scene looking out to Buzzard’s Bay over Audubon land.
photo/EverythingWestport.com June 28, 2016 © All rights reserved.
Local news you may be interested in. Updated: Saturday, August 27, 2016
Photos/EverythingWestport.com except as noted
Visit our regularly updated Theater and Arts Section, and plan your early summer event schedule!
New galleries and art venues added for 2015. New Boston area concerts and theater venue added January, 2016!
View EverythingWestport.com videos on your mobile device and PC!
New! 07/31/2016 Click here to watch video of Cultural Survival Bazaar 2016.
06/23/2016 Click here to watch video of WRG May, 2016 Annual Plant Sale.
06/23/2016 Click here to watch video of School Feasibility presentation to Selectmen.
05/27/2016 Click here to view video of dedication of POW and MIA tabletop memorial at Westport Town Hall.
Saturday, July 23 – Westport Point residence fire blamed on early morning lightning strike; heavy fire damage estimated at over $200,000 including belongs according to Westport spokesman Capt. Michael Silvia.
Silvia said when crews arrived they found a small fire on the second floor, which was quickly extinguished.
Upon further investigating the home’s attic they were met with heavy smoke and fire. A narrow staircase to the attic made it difficult for firefighters to reach the attic; the staircase began to burn through before the fire was fully extinguished.
Silvia said his crews attacked the fire from inside and outside the house. The flames were brought under control I about 445 minute.
Silvia said no one was hurt in the fire.
Battling the blaze from inside and outside of the home, Silvia said, firefighters controlled the fire in about 45 minutes. Firefighters inside the home had to reach the attic by climbing a narrow staircase that began to burn through before the fire was fully extinguished, Silvia said.
Assisting Westport firefighters were Westport paramedics and firefighters from Little Compton, Tiverton and Dartmouth. Firefighters from Fall River responded to two other calls in Westport while Westport crews were at the Main Road home.
Strong thunderstorms with severe lightning activity moved through the area Friday night and early Saturday morning and may be to blame for fire.
Meteorologist said the storm was likely a microburst, possibly with winds of 70 mph.
The owners of the property are listed as John and Nancy Pannoni of Westport.
Photo | EverythingWestport.com
Saturday, July 23 – Pressure builds on Governor Baker’s administration to explain progress on Southcoast rail.
Is it just rhetoric or reality?
Lt. Governor Karyn Polito (below) visited the area last Thursday and during a luncheon sponsored by the Fall River and New Bedford Area Chambers of Commerce, gave hope that a new preferred route for south coast rail could make it a reality.
Lt. Gov. Polito spoke before a group of business people and political leaders from the area at Rachel's Lakeside and gave indication that the proposed "Middleboro route" might push the south coast rail forward at a faster pace than the previous route. More...
Future of South Coast Rail unclear after decades of planning.
Saturday, July 23 – Turning a new Leaf to good use! The Westport Energy Committee is looking for ways to help convince town employees to make greater use of the town’s shiny little silver Nissan Leaf, purchased a little more than a year ago with the help of a state Department of Environmental Protection’s Electric Vehicle Incentive Program.
Above: Town Administrator Tim King with Westport’s new Nissan Leaf all electric vehicle. Photo | EverythingWestport.com
But the Leaf’s life in Westport may be short-lived. Is the town’s mileage reimbursement cash for employee use of their own vehicle too good to give up? More...
Saturday, July 23 - Today is ‘Hot Enough For Ya Day’ -- Here’s the day when the tired old greeting actually gains acceptance. Go ahead; say it, if you don’t have anything else to add.
Well, we have something to add – today will be 90 degrees in Westport, the hottest day of the year so far, with high humidity. Good luck parking at Cherry & Webb Beach!
Friday, July 22 - Breaking News Alert from the Boston Globe,
Thursday, July 21 - Westport animal cruelty worse than first thought.
The level of animal cruelty discovered at a 70-acre property off Route 177 is worse than many seasoned veterinarians and animal professionals at the scene have witnessed before, Detective Jeff Majewski, spokesman for Westport Police, said Wednesday.
About 600 to 800 animals have been found at the site, off 465 American Legion Highway, with some dead, others suffering, he said.
Wednesday, July 20 – 'Awful, deplorable conditions,' dead animals at Westport site for 2nd time in 6 years.
Westport Police discovered hundreds of animals Tuesday, many of them dead or in poor condition, along with makeshift cabins, illegal stoves and burning trash, on 70 acres off 465 American Legion Highway, police said.
“It looks like a Third World country,’’ said Westport Police Detective Jeff Majewski, public information officer for the department.
“Many of the animals we have come across are in awful, deplorable conditions,’’ he said. More...
Tuesday, July 19 - Westport furniture maker arrested on charges of not performing work for which he was paid. The owner of Bay State Home Furnishings in Westport was arrested Friday after he reportedly took money to build furniture but never performed the work, police said.
David Bouchard, 55, of 105 Stephen St., Dartmouth, was arrested at his 260 State Road business, said Det. Jeff Majewski of the Westport Police Department.
Left: Westport police photo.
The business is not licensed with the Town of Westport, Majewski said.
Westport police have been investigating complaints by a customer who said she paid him more than $500 to build furniture but the work was never done, Majewski said. Once the money was paid, she was unable to contact Bouchard, Majewski said. More...
Tuesday, July 19 10:00 a.m. – Breaking News – The Bristol County District Attorney’s office announced this morning the body of 35-year-old Emerson Belirio was found in South Watuppa Pond.
His body is now being sent to the Medical examiner.
The three-day search ended tragically, dashing all hopes of a miracle.
The DA’s office still maintained that “no foul play is suspected and alcohol did not seek to have a role in the incident.”
The family said Belirio could swim, but it is unknown if he was wearing a PDF (life vest.)
Monday, July 18 – New Mystery Photo posted! A new Mystery Photo was posted on Monday, July 18th at 7:25 p.m.
Click here to take your best shot at solving our latest mystery photo.
Don’t waste any time... do it now!
Monday, July 18 – Bull fired. Piping Plovers off endangered list. Diocese of Fall River selling their Adamsville Road former youth camp to local conservation group.
And the Planning Board presents 2016 Master Plan updates where a mixed bag of hopes and realities contrast.
Selectmen met last Monday night and quickly dispatched what should have been a very typical summertime agenda.
But this meeting was anything but archetypal. More later...
Monday, July 18 – Updated Tuesday, July 19 – Threatening thunderstorms temporarily halted searchers efforts Tuesday afternoon to recover the Body of Emerson Belirio, the 35-year-old father of three.
According to Gregg Miliote, spokesman for the Bristol County District Attorney’s Office, “The initial reports indicate he jumped off the boat with his life jacket on. The life jacket came up but he did not.”
“As of right now, we’re going to keep searching until we find him,” Miliote said. “It appears to be just a tragic accident.”
The almost 1300-acre South Watuppa Pond, a large recreational body of water, although quite shallow and rocky in drought conditions now has an average depth of 15 to 22 feet, hampering searchers’ recovery efforts.
Recovery efforts will resume Tuesday morning.
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Missing boater on South Watuppa identified as 35-year-old Fall River resident, Emerson Belirio.
Fall River police received a call Saturday afternoon that a man went overboard from a 20-foot Sea King Cabin Cruiser into South Watuppa Pond.
Belirio was a passenger on the cabin cruiser along with his wife, their two children, and another married couple, owners of the boat.
It was not noted if Belirio was wearing a personal flotation device (PDF) at the time of the incident.
The search, called off late Sunday afternoon, was resumed Monday morning.
Above: Rescue personnel search South Watuppa Pond 35-year-old Fall River resident, Emerson Belirio. Photo Courtesy WCVB-TV.
The Dave’s Beach boat ramp was used as the launch point for search personnel from the Fall River Police, Fall River Fire, and the Environmental Police, along with air support from the Air Wing of the Massachusetts State Police, Massachusetts State Police troopers, and a sonar boat operated by Bob Anderson of Ocean Server.
Police said foul play is not suspected at this time, and it does not appear that alcohol was involved in the incident.
Sunday, July 17 – Battle of the forty-somethings at The Open.
Henrik Stenson, 40 and Phil Mickelson, 46 are leading the field by six and five strokes respectively strokes as the final pair tee of this morning at 9:30 a.m. in the final round of the 145th playing of the British Open at Royal Troon, Scotland.
Update: 9:45 a.m. – Stenson and Mickelson have a two-shot swing on the first hole as Mickelson birdies and Stenson bogies, putting Mickelson at 12 under, leading by 1.
Fireworks started early on Thursday, when Mickelson shot a course record-tying 63, with a dramatic lip-out on the 18th hole which would have giving Mickelson, holder of five major titles, the record for the lowest round of golf ever shot a major tournament (62).
Mickelson won the Claret Jug in 2003, but said “the excitement of winning another one is driving me to win today.”
Saturday, July 16 – The Grange is getting back to its roots.
As local chapters of the Grange mark 125 years and up, the nation’s oldest agricultural organization is riding the wave of the local food movement attracting new generations of members with initiatives such as its Grange Roots campaign, said Chris Szkutak, legislative director, Massachusetts State Grange.
The Dartmouth Grange's "shared use" commercial kitchen is one of the most active in Massachusetts, helping budding food entrepreneurs realize their culinary dreams. More...
Friday, July 15 – Wild Edibles Walk Draws Crowd at Westport Town Farm. The Westport Land Conservation Trust (WLCT) drew a crowd of over 60 participants last Wednesday for an edible plants walk at the Westport Town Farm. Led by Russ Cohen, expert forager and author of ‘Wild Plants I have Known… and Eaten,’ the crowd eagerly tasted a variety of edible plants that grow wild in our region.
Keys to the identification of each species were provided, along with information on edible portions, seasons of availability, and preparation methods, as well as guidelines for safe and environmentally responsible foraging. The crowd favorite, American pokeweed, was historically used as an ink substitute by American colonists. “The Declaration of Independence was actually written in pokeweed ink,” said Cohen.
For more information on upcoming events, visit www.WestportLandTrust.org. These free hikes, walks, and talks would not be possible without the generous contributions of individuals. “We are a membership supported non-profit that relies on individual donations to provide programs like these,” said outreach and stewardship coordinator, Brendan Buckless.
“We welcome the foraging of invasive edible plants such as Japanese knotweed and Autumn olive on all WLCT destination properties,” said Buckless. “However, please refrain from harvesting native edible plants as they provide habitat for a whole host of native species that would not survive otherwise.”
Sunday, July 10 - Future of South Coast Rail unclear after decades of planning. Imagine being able to hop on the train at a station down the street and get to work, a ball game, a concert in Boston in half the time it takes to drive that grueling commute from SouthCoast.
Photo | PETER PEREIRA/The Standard-Times
It's something you probably imagine every time you sit in suffocating traffic on the bottle-necked highways that take you to the city that is the pulse of the Commonwealth. It's South Coast Rail and it's been promised for decades and decades with nothing but hopes, imaginations, and plans to show. More...
Saturday, July 9 – Westport’s Housing Authority recently contracted with Somerset for the management of its State Road public housing complex after the current manager stepped away from a new contract.
The Fairhaven Housing Authority, manager of the 48-unit Greenwood Terrace since 2010, recently decided not to renew its management agreement with Westport.
Housing Authority chairperson Veronica Beaulieu said a formal contract might take weeks to get officially approved by Somerset and state authorities.
Somerset’s Housing Authority director, Lucia Casey has volunteered her time to immediately begin familiarizing herself with the Westport facility.
The popular public housing complex has a waiting list of between six months and three years for new tenants.
Friday, July 8 – Angela Benetti sent her ex-boyfriend a sympathy card when his dog went missing on Thursday, May 26th.
"The loss of a pet isn't easy ... especially one who was loved as much as yours," the card read. Then Benetti added a personal message. "Sorry for your loss Jimmy, I truly am! angela..."
But according to Westport police, she neglected to mention one thing: they say Benetti was responsible for the disappearance of Jet, a 7-year-old, long-haired female Dachshund. More...
Thursday, July 7 - Looking for work? These days, who isn’t, so listen up.
Amazon announced it will hire at least 500 people to handle merchandise and fill orders at their new warehouse. Hiring should begin this summer.
According to the Fall River Herald News, over 680 people signed up to attend Amazon briefings as of Tuesday afternoon. The sessions were for those interested in jobs as warehouse workers at the 1.2 million square foot fulfillment center under construction in the Biopark, straddling the Freetown line off Route 24.
The first briefings were held at 3:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. Wednesday at Durfee High School, 360 Elsbree Street, Fall River.
Two more briefings will be held on Thursday; the first will be at 10:00 a.m. at Diman Regional Vocational High School, 251 Stonehaven Road. The second in the Bristol Community College Auditorium, 777 Elsbree Street, at 3:00 p.m.
Amazon said thee jobs will be open to people with a high school diploma or a GED. Applicants will have to file online, complete an online test and pass a drug test.
Jobs will also be posted on their website, www.amazon.jobs. You can click or call for the mailing list through the Career Center; to be notified of open Amazon jobs email: email@example.com, or call the Career Center at 508.730.5000.
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Saturday, August 27
Saturday, August 27 - Saturday Mornings Harvest Yoga at Partners Village Store, 865 Main Road, Westport. Starts at 8:30 a.m. from June 4th until Saturday, August 20th.
Kripalu Yoga is a restorative yoga program steeped in the Kripalu
tradition of compassion and non-judgment.
Suggested donation is $10.00 per person; please
bring your yoga mat and water; ages 16 and over please.
About the Instructor:
Jeff Costa is a Yoga Alliance nationally certified instructor with a BA in Liberal Arts from Boston University and a graduate of the Kripalu School of Yoga and Health. With over 20 years’ experience in group fitness and personal training, the strength of Jeff’s teaching lies in his attention to detail and his compassionate charm.
Saturday, August 27 - Yoga at the Vineyard! The folks at the Westport Rivers Vineyard are happy to announce a special session of “Yoga at the Vineyard” and a wine tasting with their resident wine educator, Corey Nuffer starting at 8:30 a.m.
the benefits of a heightened state of focus, awareness, and calm that yoga
brings with what might be the best wine tasting of your life. Have you ever
sipped "RJR" Brut Cuvee in the morning sun after upward dog?
About Tracy Affonso
teaches public and private yoga and meditation classes in the greater Boston
area. She has participated on panels and lead workshops on bringing
mindfulness into the classroom for Kripalu and the
Massachusetts Teachers Association. Tracy’s classes are a fun physical
practice infused with a sense of calming energy. She mindfully instructs her
students through sequences, while offering them the space to listen to their
bodies and move with intention. Visit Tracy’s FaceBook page.
Saturday, August 27 - Westport Farmer’s Market continues from 8:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at Westport Town Farm, 830 Drift Road.
Click on image to enlarge.
This week the Market will feature Savers of Fall River hosting their second monthly recycling day. Savers will have a table where you can drop off unwanted clothing and household items (no electronics or appliances please!)
Stop by any time between 8:30 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. to learn more about the recycling program and FUNDrive. They will return again on Saturday, September 17th.
Saturday, August 27 – Revival Thrift Store has new items for bargain shoppers each day. Revival Thrift Store, 500 American Legion Highway (Route 177) is open on Mondays and Saturdays from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. New items are added every day.
Saturday, August 27 - Join the Saturday Trail Team! The Westport Land Conservation Trust started an informal volunteer party called the Tuesday Trail Team last year. Each week since, this group of a dozen or so community members has met to open up new trails, improve wildlife habitat, and enjoy the outdoors.
"The Trail Team is in one part good exercise; in one part learning about the Westport Land Conservation Trust and its mission; in one part meeting new people and working together with them; and in all parts personally rewarding," said Trail Team volunteer Sally Godfrey.
"We are a small non-profit organization that manages over 650 acres of land open to passive recreation spread across 10 destination properties throughout town," said Ryan Mann, Executive Director of WLCT. "Our vision for each property is to promote wildlife habitat, clean water, and welcoming spaces for the public. The Trail Team volunteers are making a once distant vision an immediate reality. I encourage all community members to get out on their local trail and see first-hand the tremendous service that your neighbors are fulfilling."
The Saturday Trail Team will begin meeting at 9:15 a.m. at the Westport Town Farm, 830 Drift Road, on May 7th and continue throughout the summer. For more information or to join the team, contact: Brendan P. Buckless, Outreach and Stewardship Coordinator; Westport Land Conservation Trust; 508.636.9228; or email: Brendan@WestportLandTrust.org.
August 27 - Zumba classes are offered at Sandwoods Center for the Arts, 43 Muse Way, every Saturday at 9:15 a.m. for $7
per class; $30.00 for 5 classes. In the
The classes are great for beginners and intermediate students. No previous experience is necessary.
Zumba is a form of Latin rhythms and easy-to-follow moves to create a cardio workout.
For more information, call or click Fatima Devine, certified zumba instructor, at 401.378.3872 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Saturday, August 27 - Vinyasa Yoga classes offered by Tiverton woman on Thursdays and Saturdays.
Vinyasa Yoga classes, private sessions, special celebrations (e.g. weddings, birthdays, etc.) offered by Caryl Sickul, MA, MMT, and movement specialist, experienced yoga instructor at Rivers Of Light Studio near Tiverton Four Corner’s at 410 Neck Road.
Unite body, mind and spirit in a supportive community at a lovely serene space conducive to movement, meditation and relaxation. Flow, connecting breath to a wide range of asanas.
All are welcome. Listen to your body.
Move at your own pace with variations.
Open your heart and life Increasing inner and outer ease, strength and flexibility. Enjoy your practice and increasing vitality.
Thursday 9:30-11:00 a.m. and 6:30-8:00 p.m.; Saturday 9:30-11:00 a.m. Single class $17. 8 week sessions discounted.
Please call 401.816.0024 before attending, and for more information. www.csickul.com
August 27 - Pilates in the
Yellow Building is
offered at Sandwoods Center for the Arts, 43 Muse Way, every Saturday at 10:15 a.m. for $7
per class; $30.00 for 5 classes. In the
Saturday, August 27 - Women's Fitness & Self-Defense from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. at Best Way Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, 44 Aquidneck Drive, Tiverton.
The event is for women only. Runs every Saturday.
Fight Girls, is a Women's only Self-Defense and Fitness class. This class is very similar to a boot camp style class but offers real life Self-Defense techniques to keep you safe in any worst case scenario.
So come get into shape training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Kickboxing and Self-Defense all while getting a great workout in. You won't even realize you are working out it is so much fun!
For more information call or click 401-816-0705 or email:
Saturday, August 27 - A Meditation Experience with three trained and skilled teachers: Karen Moore Holiday, Angela Denham, and Brenda Florez at the Little Compton Wellness Center, 115 East Main Road, Little Compton.
1:00 - 4:00 p.m. $30 per person.
An opportunity to learn and experience meditation practices from the different perspectives of each teacher's training, background and experience.
This workshop will kick off a weekly one-hour class to nurture and deepen your own journey with meditation... as a beginner or an experienced practitioner.
Karen, Angela & Brenda will alternate weeks of teaching and practice.
We will offer instruction and practice each week, with an opportunity for questions and feedback about your practice.
Create more space for yourself from the inside out.
Saturday, August 27 – Acoaxet Chapel to host a barbeque chicken dinner. 5:30 p.m. at the Acoaxet Chapel, 36 Howland Road, Westport Harbor. On the menu is barbequed chicken, potato salad, coleslaw, rolls, watermelon and beverage. Tickets are $12. Reservations are required not later than Wednesday, August 24th, so call Phoebe at 508.635.4857 to save a seat.
Saturday, August 27 - Junior Bird Club sponsored by Allens Pond Sanctuary.
Thursday, July 14th: Walk at Allens Pond 6:00 - 7:30 p.m. (meets at the field station)
Thursday, August 11th: Walk at Allens Pond 6:00 - 7:30 p.m. (meets at the field station)
Saturday, August 27th: Walk at Allens Pond 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. (meets at the field station)
Dress for an outdoor adventure and bring your scope or binoculars. Don't have any? We do and will gladly lend them to you while you're here!
Registration is required.
Program already started.
Register by mail: program registration form (PDF 66K)
For your own security, DO NOT send credit card information via email.
For more information, contact:
Allens Pond Wildlife Sanctuary
Westport, MA 02790
Saturday, August 27 – Live Performance with The Petty Thieves featuring Reed Foehl and Putnam Murdock at Dedee Shattuck Gallery, 1 Partners Lane, Westport.
7:00 - 8:30 p.m. Tickets $15, $20 day of event. Reed Foehl and Putnam Murdock have created this duo by formalizing their lifelong musical friendship. Established by their parents bluegrass band forty years ago, the duo has been playing and writing together for fifteen years. Their first collaboration was placed in the feature film,
Just Friends, and since then their songs have been placed in television, movies, and commercials. Dusty and patient, their music is genuine Americana, telling stories of the human condition with lyric and harmonies that push the boundaries while paying homage to tradition.
Reed Foehl - Reed has recently been nominated for a Grammy, having written a song for Lee Ann Womack latest record. Recently on tour with Gregory Alan Isakov, Anais Mitchell and Todd Snider, has returned to the east coast to record his next record.
Putnam Murdock - Putnam began his career as a touring musician, gaining comfort with the stage. He then graduated from Berklee College of Music where he honed his songwriting craft. Recently, Putnam worked with Florentine Films, Ken Burns' company, recording the music to The Roosevelts.
Saturday, August 27 – The Sixties Band at Sandywoods Center for the Arts, 43
Muse Way, Tiverton. 7:30pm, doors open at 7:00pm; $12 advance/ $15 at the door. BYOB and BYOF.
60s Band is more than a nostalgia act – injecting personality, fun and life into the songs.
While making sure the critical parts are performed, the band is acutely aware
that music is more than playing notes. At a 60's
show, you will become absorbed into the authentic feel for this classic music
selection - complete with outlandish attire, bell-bottoms, boas, and beads.
And let's not forget the tie dye and peace signs too!
Weekly dances at the Holy Ghost Club, 171 Sodom
Road, Westport. Cost is $6. Saturdays, 7:30 to 11:30 p.m. Live bands, door prizes, 50/50 raffle. Each week except the last week of the month; this is reserved for special functions. For more information call 508.636.3661.
Saturday, August 27 - Square and contra dancing at Howland Hall, Westport Point on Saturday, August 20th.
Enjoy square and contra dancing on select Saturdays at Howland Hall, behind Westport Point United Methodist Church, Main Road, Westport.
The family dance is from 8:00 – 10:30 p.m. – with an emphasis on children’s dances from 8:00 – 9:00 p.m., and young adults and adult dances from 9:00 – 10:30 p.m.
Beginners are welcome. Casual attire. Admission is $5 per dancer. Saturday’s caller is Derek Kalish with live music by Carol Bittenson & Revelation.
Karaoke every Saturday night from 8:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. at Benjamin's Sports Pub, 4 Stafford Road, Tiverton, RI.
No admission fee.
Find out more about the above and other local area events coming up this week. Click here for our all of this week’s event listings!
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Do you heat your home with fuel oil? Then you’ll want to review new safety standards for protecting against costly oil leaks that could be very expensive to remediate.
Click here PDF to see how to protect your oil tank’s fuel line as required by law. The Massachusetts Homeowner Oil Heating System Upgrade and Insurance Law requires you to upgrade your home heating system equipment to prevent leaks from tanks and pipes that connect to your furnace. By making a relatively small expenditure now, you can prevent a much greater expense in the future.
Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) positive mosquito findings in Westport and a widening swath through Southeastern Massachusetts.
Click here for more information and learn how to protect yourself from EEE.
A defective or non-functioning smoke alarm almost cost a young Westport woman her life in a recent July 4th Drift Road fire. The house burnt to the ground but the woman was saved by an alert Fire Chief. Protect yourself, your family and pets with proper smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Is your property safe? Click here to get all the details and state requirements for all age homes. Do it now. PDF Large file, Please be patient.
16 tips you need to defend yourself against deer ticks and Lyme Disease. Click here to get them now!
10 tips for living with coyotes in Westport. Click here to learn how. PDF
Aerial views courtesy of Geno Silvia
New England Wings - Custom Aerial Photography
Baker’s Beach and Westport Point.
Westport’s Central Village featuring Partners Village Store and Kitchen, Alden Hill Real Estate, and Town Hall Annex.
Local area organizations’ newsletters now on-line!