Did You Hear … ?

“It’s the Rams. We’re coming.” New Canaan High School defeated rival Darien in the Turkey Bowl Thursday, 17-14. The game featured two early interceptions by NCHS senior Charlie Cunney, rushing TD by sophomore Christian Sweeney, field goal by sophomore kicker Nicholas Radman and Drew Pyne-to-Wyatt Wilson TD pass and terrific defensive stand by the Rams to effectively close out the game, spoiling Darien’s perfect season. The result means that New Canaan First Selectman Kevin Moynihan collects on his $100 charity bet with his Darien counterpart, Jayme Stevenson. He will donate the winnings to the New Canaan Athletic Foundation (a timely gift).

‘The Vibe Is Awesome’: Gates Reopens

Some 10 months after closing its doors for the first time since launching in 1979, Gates restaurant is re-opening this week under new ownership, with a fresh look and menu. Though no formal word went out about it, New Canaanites descended on the Forest Street institution for a hopping bar scene Monday night, while an invite-only dining crowd filled the newly configured main floor at Gates—complete with a food bar overlooking a wood-fired oven and open kitchen. The bar now will be open nightly, while the restaurant is on track to open for dinner service this weekend (by reservation only), according to Jay Luther, an owner of Gates with fellow town resident Paul Tully. It isn’t clear yet just when Gates will open for lunch—stay tuned. “It’s fantastic,” Luther said of the long-awaited re-opening.

Did You Hear … ?

Seven women with direct connections to New Canaan—see the gallery above—will share their leadership experiences and encourage women and girls to pursue their goals in “Being Queen: Thoughts from the Throne,” a panel discussion hosted by NC Women Mean Business that will be held from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at New Canaan Library. Read here for more information to this free, open event. ***

A New Canaan woman spotted a bobcat on her Canoe Hill Road property on Saturday morning—the sixth such sighting in one month of the reclusive feline. “I happened to be in the kitchen and turned and looked out the window and saw a bobcat on the front lawn,” Carol Miller said of her sighting at about 4:35 p.m. Saturday. “It meandered across the driveway and headed into the woods, and not a minute later there were six prancing deer that followed it.

New Post Office To Open ‘Hopefully By Thanksgiving’; Gates ‘In the Coming Weeks’

Planning officials on Tuesday night received updates on two of New Canaan’s most widely anticipated projects downtown: the Post Office and Gates. New Canaan’s Richard Carratu, developer of the Post Office, told members of the Planning & Zoning Commission at their regular meeting that he’s contractually required to “hand off” the building to the U.S. Postal Service at the end of August. “The plan is they take two to three months to do the interior—they want it open by Christmas—so hopefully they will have it open by Thanksgiving,” Carratu told P&Z at the meeting, held at Town Hall. Asked by P&Z Commission Chairman John Goodwin whether he has a “high confidence level” that he will meet that deadline, Carratu responded: “If I don’t I think the penalty is $550 a day, so we are highly motivated.”

The Post Office is taking shape opposite Joe’s Pizza on Locust Avenue, in what had been two separate buildings—the former Carpe Diem restaurant and (going way back) former Nicoletti’s Market. (Carratu, represented by his attorney Michael Sweeney of Stamford-based Carmody Torrance Sandak & Hennessey LLP, was appearing before P&Z to request a small alteration to his site plan.)

P&Z during the same meeting unanimously approved outdoor signs for New Canaan Chicken—now open in the former Chicken Joe’s space on Elm Street—and Gates, which has been closed since last April and is undergoing an extensive renovation (sneak peek here).

Sneak Peek: Gates Renovation Nears Completion

The wait is almost over. After months of massive interior renovations and construction, the re-opening of Gates is nearing its completion. The new owners of the iconic New Canaan restaurant—which shut its doors last April after 36 years of operation—are aiming for a late-January re-launch of Gates, which will occupy the same 10 Forest Street address. Just with a major facelift. Diners familiar with the old restaurant’s layout are sure to marvel at the redesigned space that features an expanded, open kitchen replete with a brick oven for flatbreads and other menu items. Many of the building’s 650,000 bricks that were transported to New Canaan during construction in the late 19th century have been exposed, providing a unique ambiance throughout the main dining room and bar, which retains its original footprint.