Westport, Connecticut

Westport,
Connecticut

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Officially incorporated as “Westport” in 1835. Before that the town existed under the Connecticut colony dating back to 1648 and was known as Bankside and later Greens Farms.  Westport’s agricultural life changed abruptly after a cutworm invasion destroyed its successful onion crops. Westport’s riverfront setting was conducive to mills and factory production. Industrial buildings sprang up some of which are today repurposed for retail and even a boutique hotel. In the 1900’s, Westport became a cultural hub, attracting artists, writers, (F. Scott Fitzgerald) and actors like Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward.

Today Westport is still known as a cultural hub, but counts among its businesses mainly hedge funds, insurance companies, financial services firms, marketing and scientific companies.  Westport’s Main Street is the most widely visited retail destination in Fairfield County per____You find top retailers like Tiffany’s, Restoration Hardware, The Gap, Coach to mention only a few. For a break from shopping there is a wide selection for culinary experience from Indian to Chinese to Japanese to Gourmet Vegetarian or American Steakhouse.  As a tidbit: Martha Stewart began her business and career as a resident in Westport.

The Westport Country Playhouse provides a welcome bit of big city culture in this gorgeous seaside and rural town. Begun in 1931 by two New York theater producers, it began as a repertory theater with a resident group that evolved to be pre-Broadway production.  Rebuilt in 2003 – 2005 with $30.6 million in donations from Joanne Woodward and Paul Newman, as well as other Westport luminaries, the renovation created a state of the art production stage. Today, the main theater seats almost 600 and space is available for black box productions. The Leavitt Pavilion is the Town’s local theater for riverside concerts and performances near the Town’s Library.

It takes one hour and 7 minutes to travel the 44 miles from Westport to Grand Central terminal.

Westport schools are top-ranked (by???) and winning many academic awards, merit scholarships.

Westport offers Connecticut State Park, Sherwood Island and the town’s Compo Beach as waterfront access for residents.  Compo provides 29 acres of picnic area, skate parks, marina and boat launches as well as swimming along a beautiful curve of white sand. There are soccer and baseball fields and basketball courts for recreation.  Long meandering walkways are wonderful for morning or afternoon exercise, with tree areas and a food court available during the season.  You will also find an expansive off-leash dog run.

Web sites:

Facts:

44 miles from New York City
20 square miles
Population of over 26,000
Total households  10,065
Senior Center
Transportation via I-95, Merritt Parkway, Metro-North railway
Westport Library approximately 1,000,000 checkouts per year
Westport Country Playhouse – Broadway in town
Leavitt Pavilion for music and drama – 50 free performances