Westport 2-19-11

This is a good time to say something that's been on my mind for quite a while now: how much we are all going to miss the Treadwell family, who put their property on the market just over a year ago. Although they were one of the town's biggest employers for decades, no one will ever really know how much they did for our community. Most of the time, it seems, they insisted on remaining anonymous. But so much of what we are proudest of wouldn't be the same if they hadn't been here to support it and help it grow.

We're going to miss Sandy's big, toothy, shoulder-shaking laugh. We're going to miss Libby's amazing energy and infectious enthusiasm. We're going to miss chatting with Tom during one of his all-too-rare appearances at Ernie's. Hopefully, though, we're not going to miss Carrie's talent on stage, since it looks as if she and her friends at American Studio Theater will continue their tradition of coming to Ballard Park on Labor Day weekend for Shakespeare-in-the-Park.

Meanwhile, it's just possible that we've landed on our feet. About 60 of us turned out for the town board meeting last week, when the prospective purchaser of the property unveiled his plans for it. His name is David Mann, and he's a former marketing executive from Westchester County who retired 15 years ago. A while back he was inspired with a vision - to create a sort of farming retreat, a private club where members could leave it all behind and enter a bygone era.

He looked all around the east coast but when he got to our little town he felt that he'd found just the spot. We welcome him to the community and wish him luck.

The Westport Poetry Group is returning to regular meetings in the Westport Library on the first and third Thursdays of each month, from 5:30 until 7 p.m. Also you might want to know that Judith Moore (who leads the group) will read from her own poetry at the Alice T. Miner Museum in Chazy on Saturday, Feb. 19, at 2 p.m.

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