To the Editor:

As a longtime commuter myself, I think Paul Pureka’s letter in last week’s New Canaan News is on the right track (pardon the pun) about New Canaan rail service.

As neither the weekend, nor the off-rush-hour trains go beyond Stamford, there is no real need for the large, heavy M8 cars to be used when lighter, more efficient cars are available. But even if Metro-North is not ready to invest in a small number of smaller cars, there is absolutely no need to be running hourly six- and often eight-car trains during off-rush-hour times. As noted, usually only two cars are opened and even then they probably have four times the amount of space needed.

Presumably, running two-car trains every two hours would provide a huge savings. It would save 50 percent in terms of number of trips. It would also save another 67 to 75 percent in terms of the electrical and maintenance running costs, though the labor costs would probably be the same for the engineer and conductor. In short, why go from vastly over-blown service to none at all, when there is plenty of room for an answer that addresses the commuting needs of New Canaan, including bringing necessary labor to the retail establishments in town, as well as Metro-North’s need to save money?

I suppose Metro-North might even consider bus service, which they already use when there are track problems, though it is certainly not as efficient as trains, nor as environmentally desirable. I guess my point is that there is plenty of room for a compromise that is acceptable to both sides.

Finally, I should note that the rail service, along with the school system and relatives here, was one of three main reasons that we moved here almost 45 years ago. Being able to get a seat every morning, and not sleep past your station at night (on the rush-hour through trains) were huge incentives for me.

Mike Rodell

New Canaan

To the Editor:

All members of our community are being asked to generously donate bags with nonexpired, nonperishable foodstuffs. Items in need now due to low/no stock are salad dressing, kids’ juice boxes, kids’ snacks, brownie mix, pancake mix (add water only), tea, canned chili, canned stew, jelly, packaged pasta and packaged potatoes.

No beans or soup are needed now.

As always, financial gifts are appreciated. Please make your check out to New Canaan Food Pantry, 77 Main St., New Canaan, CT 06840. Food donations may be left at the New Canaan Food Pantry, at St. Mark’s Church, 111 Oenoke Ridge Road. For information, call New Canaan Human Services at 203-594-3076 if you need directions.

Tina St. Armand

First Presbyterian Church

New Canaan

To the Editor:

I am an adult resident of Darien, having lived here for almost 24 years and having sent my children to the public schools here. While I certainly do not condone the admittedly immature emails of what appear to be a few Darien high schoolers, I would have expected Mr. Jeff Jacobs (a journalist who repeatedly states he has more than 40 years of experience) not to use those emails (and some vague statements about how “Folks in Darien” supposedly “circled the wagons”) to engage in the worst and most blatant kind of negative stereotyping about en entire community (column, Feb. 23, “Darien students’ emails abusive, immature”).

I wholeheartedly agree that this incident presents a great opportunity to teach high school students about values such as respect. Unfortunately, Mr. Jacobs’ broad-brush condemnation of an entire town does more harm than good.

James Condren


To the Editor:

On March 17, Americans from coast to coast will don shamrock green and celebrate one of the biggest parties of the year: Saint Patrick’s Day. If you’re over the legal drinking age, we’re asking you to stay under the limit and do your part to prevent drunk driving.

That’s why we’re joining Anheuser-Busch and asking pub-goers to #GiveADamn and get home safe no matter where the night takes you. Over the past 30 years, Anheuser-Busch and its wholesaler partners have invested more than $1 billion in the United States to promote alcohol responsibility and help prevent drunk driving.

When you’re making plans for this Saint Patrick’s Day, think ahead to the end of the night and make the choice that keeps both you and the roads safe for everyone. Please use a designated driver, a taxi, ride-sharing service, or public transportation if you’ve been celebrating with alcohol.

From everyone at Dichello Distributors have a happy and safe Saint Patrick’s Day!

Tony Lota

Alcohol awareness and education coordinator, Dichello Distributors Inc.