PHOTOS: ‘Caffeine & Carburetors’ Returns to Downtown New Canaan

Hundreds of auto enthusiasts gathered in downtown New Canaan Sunday morning for the third “Caffeine & Carburetors” event of 2018. Pine Street and the one-way stretch of Elm were closed to motor vehicle traffic as New Canaan residents and visitors to town mingled over brew from Zumbach’s Gourmet Coffee, owned by C&C founder Doug Zumbach, visited tents set up by nonprofit organizations and sponsors and learned about the vehicles themselves and morning’s happenings from New Canaan’s Peter Bush, known to many locals as a longtime host on The Fox-95.9 FM. 

“It’s a great turnout,” C&C volunteer Matt Konspore of New Canaan said on the clear, sunny morning while guiding slow-moving vehicles out of the show. 

Flo Carbone of Bankwell, a sponsor of the event, said from the local bank’s tent: “Everyone is out having a great time, beautiful day.”

Caffeine & Carburetors will return to downtown New Canaan Oct. 21 for the final event of the year.

Police to Parks Officials: We Have No Safety Concerns Regarding ‘Caffeine & Carburetors’ at Waveny (or Downtown)

Parks officials on Tuesday night reasserted that they have safety concerns about how the Caffeine & Carburetors auto enthusiasts’ gathering at Waveny, even though the deputy chief of police said that the New Canaan Police Department has no such worries. In fact, Deputy Chief John DiFederico told members of the Parks & Recreation Commission during their special meeting, “We have no issues at all from a police and safety perspective either here in Waveny or downtown.”

“We have worked closely for the past five years with Caffeine & Carburetors and from my perspective they are one of the most organized groups that we have worked with,” DiFederico told the Commission during its meeting, held at Lapham Community Center. “What they bring to the town—the size, the volume of people and the volume of traffic—they work very closely with us, they are very organized, they work with Public Works and with [the Community Emergency Response Team]. They hire as many officers as we need to cover the event. They are open to all suggestions.

Biz on Biz: Zumbach Likes the Canali Suits at Family Britches

As part of the “Biz on Biz” series—where local business owners give us tips about favorite products or services at other businesses—we stopped by Zumbach’s Gourmet Coffee on Pine Street. Owner Doug Zumbach’s spotlighted design solutions for “unique and different” Christmas gifts, elm for the popular restaurant’s selection of pasta dishes and Family Britches for its menswear. “Family Britches is a great store, with a nice owner, ” said Zumbach, who opened his eponymous coffee shop in 1992 and offers 30 varieties of hand-roasted brews. “I’m a big fan of Canali suits. They have a really nice line and selection of those there.

Testy Parks Officials Critical of ‘Caffeine & Carburetors’ at Waveny

During a testy meeting last week, parks officials said the ‘Caffeine & Carburetors’ auto enthusiasts’ gathering at Waveny in June violated several of the conditions established for the event. Though the June 17 show “was very well attended and it was a beautiful day” and “people seemed to really enjoy it,” still some members of the Parks & Recreation Commission “were concerned that some of the procedures we asked to be put in place were not followed,” Commission Chair Sally Campbell said Wednesday night. “We had some controls over who was coming and exhibiting cars, and we wanted to ensure that our fields and our park weren’t damaged and then we were concerned about safety,” Campbell said at the meeting, held at Lapham Community Center. “All of these are very correctable. But we just wanted to bring them up because we thought they were very important.”

According to Campbell, about half of the exhibitors who had registered in advance did not display show placards on their windshields, many spectators appeared to drive into Waveny by South Avenue instead of parking at New Canaan High School, as planned, exhibitor cars were parked in front of the footpath along the main road through Waveny, forcing pedestrian traffic into the roadway and unauthorized food trucks were selling food and creating a mess.