Local Restaurants and COVID-19: Joe’s Pizza

In this installment of our daily Q&A this week with a local restaurant owner dealing with restrictions during the COVID-19 emergency, we hear from Lorenzo Colella of Joe’s Pizza on Locust Avenue. Here’s our exchange. 

New Canaanite: What has this past week been like for you? 

It’s been pretty hectic. The new system of doing everything works well when they can’t come in but it takes planning. I had to hire two new kids, a high school kid and college kid. It’s just the logistics of it all when it’s busy.

Did You Hear … ?

The five firefighters that had been in isolation due to exposure to COVID-19 are all healthy and have returned to work, Fire Chief Jack Hennessey told members of the Board of Selectmen Tuesday.. ***

New Canaan Police fielded seven reports of larcenies from motor vehicles in the first two months of 2020, compared to zero in the same period last year, according to data reviewed at Monday’s regular meeting of the Police Commission. Car crashes with injuries increased from four to nine in the same period, data show, while radar-related incidents declined from 173 to 83. ***

The Town Council on Tuesday voted to reappoint Mike Sweeney and Bernard Simpkin to the New Canaan Housing Authority. ***

Here’s a CNN video of anchor Brianna Keilar interviewing the Rev. Peter Walsh of New Canaan, who performed last rites over the phone for a local man and parishioner who had contracted COVID-19. 


New Canaan’s Alessia Miller—together with Meghan D. Hely Walsh as well as Dana Cifone and chef Stephen Lewandowski of the Townhouse Restaurant in Greenwich—received a great boost in efforts to support her sister, Tania Mariani, an Emergency Room attending physician at Greenwich Hospital. Asked if they would donate food to the Emergency Department staff, New Canaan moms and other residents of the town and surrounding area donated more than $800, according to Miller, and the restaurant matched the donation in food.

Library Seeks To Set Up Temporary ‘Mirror House’ As Visitors Center for Rebuilding Project

New Canaan Library is seeking permission to install a “mirror house” at South Avenue and Maple Street where people could preview the organization’s widely anticipated rebuilding project. 

The temporary 230-square-foot structure would use “interactive 3-dimensional tour from inside,” according to an application filed with the Planning & Zoning Commission. 

“From the outside the look of the structure is that of a ‘mirrored glass house’ due to the fact that it has very highly reflective surfaces on three sides running the full height,” owner’s agent Paul Stone of Karp Associates said in a Special Permit application filed on behalf of the library. “Essentially, it’s a mirrored box, no gables. From the interior one can see out as though it’s clear glass, but from the outside it appears as a mirror.”

P&Z is to take up the application during a regular meeting Tuesday, one week after the library won a key signal of support from New Canaan’s legislative body. 

The Town Council on March 24 voted 10-2 to deny a motion that would have effectively halted the library’s project for one year so that preservationists could figure out a use for the original 1913 building building and fundraise for its restoration and maintenance. The library is seeking a $10 million contribution from the town toward its overall $30 million project and is fundraising the balance. Those in favor of the delay—preservationists as well as Councilmen Tom Butterworth and Cristina A. Ross among them—argued that the century-old building is a rare architectural and historic gem of New Canaan that lends to the look and feel of the downtown.

Podcast: New Canaan’s Betsy Magratten

This week on 0684-Radi0, our free weekly podcast (subscribe here in the iTunes Store), we talk to Betsy Magratten, a New Canaan mom of two who, like many residents, is adjusting to life during the COVID-19 crisis. This week’s podcast is sponsored by Walter Stewart’s Market. Stewart’s has new hours, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. The 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. hour will be reserved for volunteers shopping for Seniors through Health & Human Services and Staying Put. If you are a senior or would like to arrange shopping for a senior, please call Health and Human Services today at 203- 594-3093.

Local Restaurants and COVID-19: Club Sandwich

Downtown New Canaan mainstay Club Sandwich is open for pickup 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays. For today’s Q&A, we hear from owner Leo Gaspar about how the Cherry Street deli is managing through the COVID-19 emergency and related changes. Here’s our exchange. 

New Canaanite: What has this past week been like for you? Leo Gaspar: It was a really busy week trying to navigate all the information we were receiving from the government. Our Health Department has been great as always.