The Westport Fishermen’s Association recognizes the importance of ongoing support for college students and awards up to three continuing education $500 scholarships a year. The WFA Continuing Education Scholarship is open to incoming college sophomores, juniors and seniors. Undergraduate students can receive an award for up to four years, and do not need to be prior year recipients to apply. Preference is given to applicants with a demonstrated interest in river/environmental protection and history of volunteering with WFA or similar organizations. Applicants must be Westport residents and/or sponsored by a current WFA member in good standing. Additional application criteria and instructions are online at http://westportriver.org/scholarship/ Deadline for submission is July 31, 2018. Awards will be announced in August and check will be disbursed at that time.
Westport Dawning – Opening Reception June 30th
The WFA is pleased to announce ‘Westport Dawning’, a new exhibit showcasing images of the Westport River by the dawn’s early light.
Beautiful large scale photos from Greg Stone will also be accompanied by pictures of the river at risk. A wine & cheese reception to celebrate the opening of the exhibit will be held on Saturday June 30th from 2 to 4 PM at the Horseneck Point Lifesaving Station Visitor Center, 241 East Beach Rd. in Westport.
As Greg has said: “… Dawn. It is a time of hope and inspiration – a time of special beauty when the sky takes fire with nature’s light show, all of nature awakens, and the rivers, streams and marshes pulse with life. We need to celebrate that beauty and we need to preserve it. Let us recognize the multitude of the river’s gifts – gifts of spirit, gifts of recreation, and gifts of sustenance – and let us make sure we pass these treasures on down to future generations.”
Although the river and its salt marshes are resilient, they are under siege. With this show we hope you will appreciate the special wonder and value of the river and recognize the threats to its health. Then learn what steps you can take to be a river protector.
‘Westport Dawning’ will be on display at the Horseneck Point Lifesaving Station Visitor Center, 241 East Beach Rd. in Westport during the peak summer season, from June 30th to Sept 2nd. The exhibit is FREE and open to the public on Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday afternoons from 12 to 4 pm. The photos as well as photo cards will be available for sale, with all proceeds supporting the WFA’s Clean Water fund.
‘Westport Dawning’ is funded in part by a grant administered by the Westport Cultural Council and funding from the Hanover Group Insurance Foundation.
The popular Westport Summer Passport is back for 2018! It is a fantastic way to take in Westport’s beautiful sights. This year, it’s all about water. Westport looks out on Buzzard’s Bay, and the east and west branches of the scenic Westport River run through its landscape. The town boasts countless ponds, lakes, and brooks. Westport’s long history, economy, culture, natural environment, and leisure activities have been shaped by water. Follow the easy self-guided Passport to experience Westport and all of its glorious water. Take family and friends and have a good time!
Be sure to visit Horseneck Point Lifesaving Station as one of your stops and check out the Westport Dawning photo exhibit on view June 30th to Sept 2nd on Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday afternoons from 12 to 4.
Download the Summer Passport here: passport2018web
The WFA will award up to two $650 merit scholarships awards for college this year to local graduating high school seniors, preferably with a demonstrated interest in river/environmental protection. The award is designated as a “merit” scholarship; academic criteria and community citizenship will be evaluated, not financial need. Students who are Westport residents or who are sponsored by a WFA member are eligible to apply.
Students may download the application from the WFA website at http://westportriver.org/scholarship/ or pick one up from their local high school guidance office. The completed application is due by April 30th. The selected recipient(s) will be announced by June 1st and will receive a check after satisfactory completion of the first semester of college.
The WFA’s 14th annual ‘Run for the Water’ will be held on Saturday, May 5th at Horseneck State Beach Reservation. This year we will reinstate the 8K course along the full length of the state beach and around the reservation, with cash awards for top male & female finishers. The 5K Family Fun Run/Walk returns, with fun prizes for top individuals. Prizes will also be awarded in other categories for both races. We will offer complimentary T-Shirts and a post-race feast for all runners! All proceeds will support WFA’s efforts to protect and preserve the Westport River and its marine habitat as well as our scholarship and education programs.
Early bird online registration fee is $20 until March 31st. Regular registration is $25 and Kids 14 & Under are only $15. WFA members are eligible for a $5 discount. Race day registration fee is 20% more. Register online at www.racemenu.com/wfa14 or download a mail-in form.
The Westport Fishermen’s Association’s 34th annual clambake was held under warm and sunny skies on Sept. 17 for over 175 happy guests. After everyone enjoyed their clambake with all the fixings, we moved on announcing the pick-a- prize raffle winners, culminating in awarding of the grand prize 18′ handcrafted Night Heron Kayak to Ihsan Gurdal of Cambridge and Westport. Happy paddling!
Members always get their newsletter in the mail. For everyone one else, plus those who prefer to consume their news online, the latest issue of the WFA quarterly newsletter is now posted online. Happy summer reading!
It is never too early to reserve your clambake tickets for the WFA’s 34th annual traditional bake on Sept. 17, 2017. Lobster and double lobster options available! For details and to order online click here.
The Westport Summer Passport 2017 is an adventure that will take you to six of the most beautiful and interesting local spots. It is a free self-guided family-friendly activity that runs through July and August. All walks are less than 1.5 miles and cover flat ground or short moderate or steep inclines. You will visit:
- Brookside Conservation Area, 1013 American Legion Highway (north Westport)
- Forge Pond Conservation Area, 214 Forge Rd. (north Westport)
- Handy House, 202 Hix Bridge Rd. (central Westport)
- Horseneck Point Lifesaving Station, 214 East Beach Rd. (south Westport)
- Mill Pond Conservation Area, 62 Reed Rd. (Head of Westport)
- Noquochoke Conservation Area, 421 Pine Hill Rd. (central Westport)
Westport Summer Passport is a partnership of the Westport Historical Society, The Westport Land Conservation Trust, the Westport Fishermen’s Association, and the Westport Education Foundation.
To download the passport go to http://westportlandtrust.org/westport_summer_passport/
Visit Horseneck Point Lifesaving Station this summer to view our latest exhibit: Notorious Shipwrecks off Westport! The opening reception is on Saturday, June 24th at 2 pm.
Exhibit hours are Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday from 12 to 4 pm from June 24th through Sept. 3rd. Free admission. Donations are always welcome. The exhibit is supported by in part by the Chip Gillespie Memorial Fund and by a grant from the Westport Cultural Council.
The entrance to Buzzards Bay is littered with shipwrecks, though it is impossible be certain of how many ships have been lost in this area of shoals and reefs, dense fog, and strong tides. Locally, most vessels went aground on Hen and Chickens Reef at the southern end of Gooseberry Island. Although nowadays there are fewer wrecks due to improvements in navigation, these waters still hold many stories.
Artifacts and the stories about the fate of three large ships, all over 300 feet long, that went aground nearby – the USS Yankee (1908) pictured above, the HMCS St. Francis (1945) and the Angela (1971) – are on display.