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Weston Photographer Earns a Millie Best Award

Weston photographer Bruce Ando spent five years taking pictures in the Bridgeport wetlands. "I would just sit down, wait, and see what happened," he said. Once, he dropped to his hands and knees to sneak up on a frog perched on a rock, hoping to snap a photo before the frog hopped away.

"[But] he kept sitting there," said Ando, resulting in one of the beautiful snapshots shown above. Ando’s pictures of the wetlands through the seasons have been featured in Time Life books and Popular Photography and most recently were used in a traveling art show promoting the Norwalk watershed.

Saturday, which is Weston’s Green Up Day, the Weston Kiwanis Club will honor Ando with a Millie Best Award for raising awareness of the wetlands and the need to preserve them. The award is named for the late Millie Best, who established Green Up Day almost 40 years ago. It is given to a citizen who has made a contribution to environmentalism, conservationism and/or the beautification of Weston.

Ando began photographing the wetlands in Bridgeport in 1972. He spent five years on just one path, staying for three or four hours during each visit.

"I'm trying to stand up for the wetlands,” he said. “I grew up in Black Rock and, as a kid, I would literally turn over a rock and find little lobsters."

Ando now mostly photographs for corporate annual reports and commercial and industrial projects. He recently took photos for Pepsi's annual report and spent one month on the road with Cyndi Lauper taking pictures for her Japanese tour book.

He is also a Weston volunteer firefighter and also takes photographs for the department.

What do you do to bring awareness to the environment? Email your stories and photos to shenry@mainstreetconnect.us.

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