John Howe

Recent Articles

Parks Superintendent: Town Playing Fields ‘Better Conditioned Now Using Less Pesticides and More Organics’

Officials last week approved more than $100,000 for the purchase and application of grass treatment products at New Canaan’s athletic fields, both on school grounds and in parks. A figure that has come down as some grass fields are converted to artificial turf, the approximately $109,000 approved by the Board of Selectmen will be divided between two contracts: $90,911 for the purchase of products from Burlington, Mass.-based Tom Irwin Inc. and $18,200 for Harwinton-based Championship Turf Services to apply them. “It has been working great separating the products from the company that is applying them,” John Howe, parks superintendent with the New Canaan Department of Public Works, told the selectmen at their Aug. 22 meeting, held in Town Hall. “We own the products and we know how much we are supposed to apply and make sure that we get that applied. Continue Reading →

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Did You Hear … ?

A chipmunk has been darting into New Canaan Olive Oil this week when the door near Elm Street’s 50-yard-line is propped open. The staff at the shop has successfully ushered the small animal back out again. ***

New Canaan Police will enforce seatbelt use among local motorists with the department’s “Click It or Ticket” campaign, to run May 22 to June 4 at random checkpoints in town. ***

The New Canaan Land Trust has room for two more paid interns to work for the organization this summer. The Land Trust is looking for rising sophomores and juniors and pays $100 per week (for four days a week) for a 5-week summer resetting stonewalls, removing invasive plants, blazing trails, building wildlife habitat, doing research and learning about the land. Continue Reading →

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Town Committee to NC Lax Association: Mandatory ‘Fields Usage Fee’ Is Separate from Your Generous Contribution To Dunning

Though generous, New Canaan Lacrosse Association’s contribution to the re-turfing of Dunning Field cannot stand in or otherwise alter a mandatory fee that all youth sports organizations pay the town for the maintenance of athletic fields, officials said Monday. The volunteer committee that oversees youth sports in New Canaan at its regular meeting decided to defer to the Board of Selectmen on a request from the NCLA to waive a mandatory $20 per-player, per-season fee for fields maintenance. Lacking a quorum, the Youth Sports Committee stopped short of a formal vote on the matter at its regular meeting. Yet committee members said they’re unconvinced by the NCLA’s reasoning that a $100,000 contribution to the Dunning that drained its resources means the organization may forego paying the “fields usage fee” until its funds are replenished. “They are separate issues,” committee member Sally Campbell said at the meeting, held in Lapham Community Center. Continue Reading →

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Parks Officials: Wet Weather Lifts, Clearing Way At Last To Open Playing Fields

Town officials say they expect nearly all playing fields to be open by Wednesday, despite recent heavy rains that have held up operations at the water tower and Farm Road fields at New Canaan High School. Athletes on major spring sports that practice or play on grass had options as of Monday on the NCHS track and Conner fields (soccer), playing fields at Saxe (lacrosse), little league and varsity fields at Mead Park (baseball) and Orchard Field at Waveny (softball), according to the Department of Public Works. DPW workers on Tuesday will paint out the kids’ soccer fields at Waveny, said John Howe, parks superintendent. “Overall the condition of the fields, they are in good shape,” Howe told “With that said, they are still wet, even though we’ve had a few days drying and we’re almost a month later than when we regularly open up. Continue Reading →

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Parks Officials Support Scaring Canada Geese Out of Mead, Disrupting Birds’ Breeding Cycles

Town officials last week voiced support for using taxpayer money to hire a Wilton-based company to scare Canada geese at Mead Pond and disrupt the birds’ breeding cycles in an effort to make sure their droppings go away from playing fields. The Park & Recreation Commission voted unanimously to recommend accepting about $5,000 from parents of New Canaan High School baseball players and requesting $15,000 in next fiscal year’s budget for the balance of a “geese management” program that would include Mead as well as the Saxe Middle School playing fields. The money would be paid to Chris Santopietro of Geese Relief LLC. The company’s website says ‘Got poop? We can help.’

Geese Relief works with “highly trained working border collies,” Santopietro told Park & Rec commissioners at their Dec. Continue Reading →

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