‘We Felt It Immediately’: Downtown Merchants on the Loss of Parking Spaces on Elm Street

One month after town officials preliminarily “lined out” a new parking configuration on Elm Street that loses downtown New Canaan more than a dozen spaces, some merchants say the change already is having a dramatic effect on business. Though parking woes already were aired daily by customers, the new scheme that includes a legally required 25-foot buffer zone between a crosswalk and parking space “has had an immediate impact,” according to Maxine Berg, owner of Jade, a popular luxury fashion fitness boutique at 7 Elm St. “We felt it immediately, the minute those spaces were taken,” said Berg, who purchases parking permits for the Center School Lot for herself and staff at the shop. “Especially on my part of Elm. There were four, five spaces.”

Prompted by a resident’s formal complaint about New Canaan’s non-compliance with what appears to be a seldom-observed state law, the town rather suddenly in mid-July was compelled to eliminate 13 parking spaces on Elm Street, which has five crosswalks.

‘Early Bird Sales’ To Premiere Friday, Setting Up New Canaan Sidewalk Sales

For 51 years, New Canaan has held its Sidewalk Sale & Village Fair in July. With the third week of the month already underway, New Canaan stores and shops have already started to set up for this weekend. Although the town has had this date set for every year, the Darien and Greenwich weekend sales fall on the same days this year. Expected to lose some of the crowd to the other towns, the New Canaan Chamber of Commerce has worked with stores and town officials that many expect will please bargain-hunters and merchants alike this year. For the first time, street-level stores downtown will hold ‘Early Bird Sales’ on Friday.

New Canaan’s Jacqueline Dorman, Breast Cancer Survivor and Pink Stroll Supporter: ‘I Don’t Want Anyone To Miss a Mammogram’

Though she had no family history of breast cancer, New Canaan resident Jacqueline Dorman goes diligently for mammograms and—as an additional (not substitute) screening tool that sometimes can detect masses where mammography isn’t helpful, the American Cancer Society says—ultrasounds. Last December, through ultrasound, the 45-year-old mom of three discovered that she had two masses in her breast, and one of them was malignant. After testing positive for “BRCA2”—sometimes called the “breast cancer susceptibility gene”—Dorman in January underwent a double mastectomy, reconstructive surgery and, fearing the development of ovarian cancer, a partial hysterectomy. On Thursday, Dorman—a Scotland native and town resident for 10 years who is a professional lawyer—will join other local breast cancer survivors for New Canaan’s first-ever Pink Stroll, a joint effort of the Chamber of Commerce, local merchants (full list below) and Connecticut affiliate of Susan G. Komen. The event, to run 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday at participating shops, will see Dorman and other survivors model fashions of the individual stores while donating 10 percent of all proceeds to Komen and raise awareness and funds for breast cancer research.

New Canaan Gears Up for Aug. 21 ‘Taste of the Town Stroll’

New Canaan’s business community is gearing up for an increasingly popular annual event that connects local merchants with customers while benefitting the local food pantry. The New Canaan Chamber of Commerce’s third annual Taste of the Town Stroll, benefitting the New Canaan Food Pantry, runs from 6 to 9 p.m. next Thursday, Aug. 21 (rain date Aug. 22). Chamber Marketing Associate Laura Budd calls the event “a triple win.”

“Number one, the food pantry gets stocked.

Women’s Fitness Wear Shop ‘Jade’ Opens on Elm Street

The idea of setting up her boutique women’s fitness wear shop in a New Canaan storefront had appealed to Maxine Berg since she launched Jade as a trunk show business a few years ago. This week—after more than 18 months in neighboring Darien, though never abandoning the New Canaan goal—Berg finally saw her longtime vision materialize. “It’s very exciting,” Berg, a Wilton resident, said hours into the first official day of business for Jade in its new, well-lit space at 7 Elm St. “This is where I wanted to be from the beginning, so to actually be here it’s like, ‘We did it,’ ” a smiling Berg said as some of her very earliest customers perused high-end fitness wear on display in built-in and custom racks across the floor. “We got here and quicker than I thought we would.