Steve Benko

Recent Articles

Parks Officials Designate New Areas at Waveny for Drone Operators, Eye Kiwanis for This Fall

Drone pilots finally have a viable and designated place to fly this summer. Parks officials on Wednesday created a plan for drone users and their devices to operate at Waveny. Under a proposal that the New Canaan Parks & Recreation Commission approved 8-0 during its regular meeting, beginning June 26 and through Aug. 15, drone-using members of the New Canaan Radio Control Society will be able to fly the devices in an area west of the water towers, near the softball fields behind Lapham Community Center, while model plane and “quad-copter” racing owners fly on the same field but nearer to the main road through Waveny. Flying will take place 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on weekends and 12 to 4 p.m. three days per week, commission Chair Sally Campbell said. Continue Reading →

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Did You Hear … ?

A mother turkey hopped out into Valley Road around 12:30 p.m. on June 7 to keep at bay a town woman walking her dog up near the Grupes Reservoir. The mama turkey apparently was guarding her three baby chicks nearby—unfortunately, a passing motorist struck the big bird and killed her. The pedestrian phoned the Animal Control section of the New Canaan Police Department, and Officer Allyson Halm spotted the baby turkeys but lost them on retrieving a carrier from the van. ***

Congratulations to New Canaan resident Pasquale Poccia, who became a U.S. citizen this week after taking the Oath of Allegiance on Wednesday during the 6th annual Flag Day Naturalization Ceremony at Mystic Seaport. Poccia is owner of Pasquale’s Osteria, an Italian and International/Continental cuisine restaurant on Main Street in Norwalk. Continue Reading →

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Town Hall’s Front Lawn and Waveny Park: Locals Offered Two Outdoor Concerts on Thursday Night

Locals this week will kick off a beloved summer tradition with a twist. On Thursday, the same night that the popular Waveny Summer Concert Series begins, New Canaanites will have the option of hearing another band play on the front lawn of Town Hall—a brand-new event conceived months ago by First Selectman Rob Mallozzi that officials say offers a different venue and experience to the established Waveny series. “The location is perfect for a summer gathering,” Mallozzi said of the Town Hall event, which will run 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. and feature the Norwalk-based Summertime Band. “With so many restaurants, ice cream shops and other businesses nearby, I hope our residents will come down and take advantage of all this area of town has to offer.”

From 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. the same night, original folk rock musician Kenn Morr will entertain the crowd behind the balcony out back of Waveny House. “He played last year and really impressed,” said Recreation Director Steve Benko, head of the department that organizes the Waveny Summer Concert Series (see the full schedule here), presented again this summer by Bankwell. Continue Reading →

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Parks Officials: Moms Who Frequent Mead Park Eager To Have Input on New Playground Equipment

Parks officials say they’re forming a working group to collaborate with local moms who want to have a say in the design of new playground equipment coming to Mead Park. The town for fiscal year starting July 1 approved $190,000 to upgrade and replace some of the 20-year-old play structures (see page 42 here), and the moms are “very concerned and anxious” to help with how it’s redone, Parks & Recreation Commission Chair Sally Campbell said at the group’s most recent meeting. “They do not want to redo the playground—they want to help with the design of it, help improve the area around it,” Campbell said at the meeting, held May 10 at Lapham Community Center. “They are looking to improve that whole footprint over there and so they would like to sit with us and talk to us and they hopefully want to raise funds to supplement the amount of funds [Recreation Director] Steve Benko got in the budget to redo the playground.”

The moms also are willing to fundraise in order to supplement the $190,000 as needed, Campbell said. Campbell said relying on the moms would “probably be a good idea,” as they’re the playground’s most regular users. 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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