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Westport OKs New Fees For Recreation Programs

WESTPORT, Conn. – Fees for the Westport Youth Basketball Program will increase between $5 and $25 beginning this fall, and fees for the Staples High School community pool will decrease due to declining usage.

The new registration fees for the Youth Basketball Program vary depending on grade division. The high school division will see the largest hike as fees go from $110 to $135. The fourth through eighth-grade division fee will increase from $125 to $135. The second and third-grade division fee will go from $80 to $90. The first-grade and under division will increase from $65 to $70.

Parks and Recreation Department Director Stuart McCarthy said this will be the first time in five years that youth basketball costs have gone up. He said the increases are needed to keep up with the mounting costs of running the program, which he said has grown in popularity. Annually, about 1,500 children are enrolled in the program, he said.

On the other hand, use of the Staples community pool has declined, McCarthy said. As a result, the pool hours will be reduced from seven days to four days a week and the daily fees will be decreased from $7 to $5 for resident adults. Children ages 6 to 17 will no longer be charged to use the pool.

Also, both the family membership and the discount card will be deleted. The adult pool membership is going down from $250 to $125, and the senior citizen membership is decreasing from $125 to $100.

Both sets of fee changes were approved by the Board of Selectmen Wednesday and will go into effect in September.

The selectmen also approved the following:

? An outdoor antiques market is coming to Luciano Park in the Saugatuck section of town beginning in August. The market will be organized by the Homes With Hope, a Westport nonprofit that provides housing and programs for the homeless.

? The second annual Slice of Saugatuck Festival is scheduled for Sept. 15. Unlike last year, there will be a cost associated with the event. Everyone wishing to sample the food being provided by participating restaurants will need to purchase a $5 wristband. Otherwise, all are welcome to enjoy the free music and entertainment.

? A craft beer tasting event will be held on Veterans Green on Oct. 27 as part of the upcoming Foodie Fest being organized by the Westport Downtown Merchants Association and CT Bites.

? The annual Fairfield County Concours d’Elegance Nutmeg Tour for Autism, a classic car parade, will take place on Veterans Green on Sept. 9.

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