Let the games begin!
Let the games begin!
Green Light to Winter Sports

The CIAC has set January 19 for the first practice for winter sports.  Actual games  can start Monday, February 8.

Twelve regular season games will be permitted in both girls and boys basketball, boys ice hockey, girls gymnastics and boys swimming. 

Postseason in all these sports will be allowed from March 15-28 but no state championship tournaments will be held this year.  

Indoor track will be limited to practice with no meets before March.


State of Connecticut deploying National Guard troops to assist in Washington DC. This includes military police and explosive-detection dog teams. The state’s Air Guard has C-130H aircraft and crews on alert status, which are capable of moving personnel throughout the country if needed.


The CIAC has distributed 74 cold water immersion tubs to member schools throughout Connecticut. The tubs are used as emergency treatment for athletes who incur heat illness through sports participation.

Medical guidance requires victims of heat illness to be cooled asap to prevent serious and potentially life threatening consequences. Guidelines also require calling 911 immediately.


The Dock Shop on Tokeneke Road is closing. The store catered to beach combers, boating enthusiasts and fishermen. It offered carefully selected and unique items that represented life on the New England coast.  

Some Sad News:

It has been reported David Marshman has passed away. Dave attended Middlesex Jr. High with some of us before heading to Phillips Andover Academy. Dave worked as a realtor for Coldwell Banker in Venice, Florida.


Picture from Pear Tree Beach posted on Facebook


The Pond-Weed House, the now faded and neglected home on the corner of Post Road and Hollow Tree Ridge Road, is for sale.The house was probably built around 1730 in the vicinity of the original settlement at Holly Pond. Originally an inn and tavern, it is believed George Washington may have stopped there. 

The house was converted to a trade shop before finally to a private home. The most recent owner was Timothy Miller. Miller worked with The Jim Henson Company and he and his team were nominated for four Emmy awards, including two for "The Muppet Show". Miller owned the property for 33 years before passing in 2019. His estate has been working with the town and the Museum of Darien for the best options on preserving as much of the house as possible. 


Christmas Tree Sale

The Noroton Heights FD quickly sold out of the 725 Vermont fir trees it had for its annual Christmas tree sale. The sale has been a tradition for 30 years. 

Starting the day after Thanksgiving and despite being open only four days a week, the trees and wreaths flew off the lot and were gone by Sunday afternoon, December 6.

This event is the biggest fundraiser of the year for the Department. 


We have it on good authority that despite the ongoing pandemic, Santa Claus was able to make to the Darien Sport Shop for the annual Christmas tree lighting. The good folks from the Darien Fire Department brought Santa, fully masked by the way and with a satchel of hand sanitizer, to light the 40 foot Norway spruce.


The Duchess Restaurant, a Darien staple for over 40 years near Exit 13 South of I95 on the Boston Post Road, is planning to close.

A proposal to build a 24 hour 7- Eleven store in this location has created a brouhaha in Darien. Residents say it is an unwelcome addition.

“In the interest of Darien, I see no reason to approve this site as a gas station; it will bring no added value nor enhance the quality of life in the town of Darien and may in fact have the opposite effect,” one resident said.
The Darien Police expressed concern over traffic increasing on the Post Road, pedestrian and crosswalk safety in the area, and potential criminal activity in a 24-hour convenience store/gas station on US 1 directly adjacent to I-95.
While a new gas station has not been built in Darien in the last 25 years, residents argue that less than 3 miles from this location on I95 is an Interstate rest area complete with 24-hour fuel and food service.


Winter Season Postponed

The CIAC announced they have postponed winter sports until January 19, 2021. They continue discussions with the CT Dept of Health and CT State Medical Society regarding the start of winter practice. The sports of winter affected are:

Indoor Track
Girls Gymnastic
Boys Swimming

No Turkey Bowl This Thanksgiving
The football field will be quiet this year as Covid 19 shut down the annual Thanksgiving classic between Darien and New Canaan.

The game had been played on ThanksgIving since 1994.

In last year's classic, the New Canaan Rams ended Darien’s previously unbeaten season, winning the final game 20 –0 . This marked the Rams third consecutive Bowl victory.

All told, the Darien and New Canaan football squads have squared off since 1928, with the Rams coming out on top with a 59-32-2 record.


New Restaurant 

While many restaurants struggle under the weight of pandemic fears and social distancing, some see opportunity. We previously reported on the grand opening of Baja Joe’s Tex-Mex, located at 23 Tokeneke Rd. Another restaurant has recently opened in Darien. The café, Barvida, just began business last week at 879 Boston Post Rd.
The brainchild of Brennan Branca, 2013 DHS graduate and soccer player, it is 100% organic and a 100% plant-based café. Along with fresh juices, his new establishment also features acai bowls, smoothies, salad, wraps and wellness shots, among other food items.

“We source ingredients from all over the world to ensure that our menu items are the cleanest and healthiest they can possibly be,” he said, including cacao from Guatemala, mushrooms from Japan and Siberia, and organic açaí from the Amazon Rain Forest in Brazil.

“I love Darien and I really wanted to bring health and wellness back to my hometown,” Branca said. “I thought that Darien was lacking in healthy food and I really wanted to make that change.”


Darien boys X-Country finished their abbreviated season with a perfect 5-0 record. Two Darien runners were included in the top 5 FCIAC All-West Region Awards.

The DHS girls team finished 4-1 and also had two of the top 5 runners mentioned in the FCIAC All-West Region Awards.


Darien girls soccer had a great year, finishing the regular season undefeated at 9-0 and top of the FCIAC West.

In tournament play, Darien won its semi-final match against the Stamford Black Knights, only 2-6 in the regular season.

In the FCIAC West Regional finals, Darien faced off against rival New Canaan and lost a heartbreaker 2-1, the Rams scoring the tie-breaking goal on a corner kick in the second half.


The Blue Wave cross-country runners have a new home course this year. So far, the new course has brought luck as both the boys and girls are 2-0, first beating New Canaan and then Stamford HS.

Against the Black Knights, standout Mairead Clas was first for the girls, finishing 15:32 for their 3000m course. Darien won the boys 4,800m event with a time of 16:25.

More than 15 years ago, the Blue Wave ran home meets at Wee Burn Country Club, but were limited to Mondays when the golf course was closed to members. When the club shifted the layout of its greens, the course was virtually wiped out, and the runners had to use the road. The new course brings welcome relief. 


Bill Frate, DHS Class of 1973, still owns and operates the iconic Darien News Store on Tokeneke Road.

The store itself was built by Bill’s grandparents, Lottie and Gennaro Frate, opening in 1928. Gennaro Frate, born in 1906, also served 14 terms in the Connecticut General Assembly. 

The Darien News Store is one of a few historical businesses on Darien’s Tokeneke Road strip near the Darien train station.

Just down the road, Johnny’s Records has been business since 1975. Lounging with his feet atop a small counter at the front of store is John Konrad, proprietor of Johnny’s since 1975, and DHS Class of 1968.

 Ernie’s, the historic bar on Tokeneke Road, has been in business since the early 1930’s.


While school has started with a hybrid model, they’re on track to have a full reopening Sept. 29, with five days of school in person. However, full remote learning will still be available for those who request it. There has been 11 COVID-19 cases reported for Middlesex Middle School and one suspected case at Tokeneke Elementary School,. The plan is for quarantining those with direct exposure while keeping schools open as long as possible.

Darien teachers have held a rally to raise concerns about being in school full-time

While pandemic problems has caused many Darien businesses to close, a new restaurant has opened called Baja Joe’s Tex-Mex Bistro. Located next to Ernie’s on Tokeneke Road, it specializes in tacos, burritos and quesadillas.

For High School Students,
A Complex Way to get Around

Hallway patterns will promote social distancing:
  • One-way hallways.
    • The first floor will go clockwise - from the Welcome Center in, you'll go straight down the A wing hallway.
    • Each floor rotates directions.
  • One-way staircases
    • green = up
    • red = down
  • Staggered exits from classrooms to control flow into hallways
  • Longer passing periods to allow additional travel time for increased distance
 All clear?

Hard to Believe
One Year since our 50th Reunion !

See You Again Soon!
Jed Sells Lawrence Funeral Home

Darien’s only funeral parlor, Lawrence Funeral Home, has been sold. As of Tuesday, the Edward Lawrence Funeral Home was officially sold to Lesko & Polke Funeral Home of Fairfield. This sale marks the end of the 127-year family ownership.
Originally located in New Canaan, the Edward B. Lawrence Undertaking Business began in 1893. In 1931, Edward B. Lawrence’s son, Edward (Ted) Lawrence moved the business to Darien. Eventually, the business was passed to Jed Lawrence’s father, Edward Green Lawrence. Jed began working in the family business in 1973.
Lawrence, a lifelong Darien resident and Darien High Class of ‘68 grad, said he is ready for a bit of a “less demanding” lifestyle as a semi-retiree. Jed remains an elder and member of Noroton Presbyterian Church, Kiwanis Club of Darien, Darien Chamber of Commerce, and the Noroton Fire Department. He also coached Darien Little League and the Darien Junior Football League. He and his wife Debbie have two adult children


Some Historical Photos of Darien

Town officials at Bell gravesite
Town officials at Bell gravesite
Darien Celebrates 200 Years

It was June 12, 1820 that a gentleman named Thaddeus Bell called to order Darien’s first town meeting. Right after the American Revolution, five towns stretched across the shoreline of Fairfield County.  One of the towns, Stamford,  included today’s Darien, and most of New Canaan. A local religious society, or parish, Middlesex Parish was recognized officially in 1741. When parishes lost their civil standings with the new state constitution in 1818, towns were drawn along political lines and our area petitioned for incorporation.

Thaddeus Bell came from a family who first settled the town of Stamford in 1640. Thaddeus was a leader in the community and perhaps it’s best known veteran of the Revolutionary War. A man of ‘substance’, he owned a large farm in the Ox Ridge area. Under his leadership, the Connecticut Assembly approved the petition to form Darien in 1820. 

The original charter listed the town’s name as Belltown, and it was Thaddeus who decided on the name Darien.

Post 50th Reunion Get-Together
Great shot of classmates Kenny Peliksza, Mike 'Lope' Lopriore, Dick Costello, and Ben Bruno in Jacksonville. Nobody mentioned any golf scores but all were sad to see former Jax resident Paul Hepp leave for Texas. 

Teachers, Students Celebrate End of School
DHS seniors celebrated the end of the topsy-turvy school year but not before one more tough decision had to be made. The event was scheduled for Thursday but with rain predicted it was moved to Friday.
So on Friday morning the Darien High seniors drove colorfully decorated cars and waved posters as they took a victory lap around the campus and collected their diplomas.


DHS Ranked High by U.S. News

U.S. News magazine recently released a list of top high schools, and nationally Darien High School came in a very respectable #214th place. The school has a graduation rate of 97%.

Additionally, DHS is ranked tied for FIRST (!) in the nation in the ranking of Math and Reading Proficiency (determined by state administrated tests).

The high school is also ranked No. 3 in the state. Local high school Weston was ranked higher in CT but ranking slightly below the Wave were Westport (4), New Canaan (5), and Greenwich (7).

Darien’s national ranking in the important Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) category was a respectable #84.

Great DHS Athletes

Anybody remember Bob Staak? Bob was a DHS graduate in 1966, a year before our class arrived. He is the all-time DHS basketball scorer with 1,166 points. And this was before the 3 point shot.

Bobby started playing basketball at the age of 5 or 6 and was always good at it.

After graduating from high school he transferred to UCONN his sophomore year. He was co-captain his junior and senior years, MVP his senior year, and at graduation was the 4th all-time leading scorer at UCONN with 1,288 points.

Bob eventually entered coaching, where he worked with a number of college teams including being the head basketball coach at William and Mary. Bob has also been in the NBA for nearly 20 years in various assistant coaching and front office positions.

There is now a movement to have Bob’s DHS No. 21 jersey retired. 

Go Team!

We know things are rough right now. So who better than some cheerleaders to keep up our spirits to finish the fight!

Front row left to right:
Anahid Kavookjian, Josie Mullen, Joni Dobson
Back row left to right:
Sue Geiger, Sharon Denunzio, Cinny Cobb, Sue Perschino, Peggy McNeil, Sue Venarde
Sandy Young, Carol Ann Augustus


Bill Wright, Steve Craig, and Paul Hendrickson attended the CIAC State Track Open Championship in New Haven on Saturday. 

In the 1969 track season, Mark Tinker, Rick Poccia, Steve Craig and John Fitzsimmons ('70) ran a DHS record time for the 4 x 220 yard relay. The event is now the 4 x 200 meter relay, so their record will remain on the books. 

This year's winning time for the 4 x 200 m was 1:32.18.  The 1969 record time for the 4 x 220 was 1:31.20. The 1969 relay was a full 45 feet (13.72 meters) longer and yet  run 1.5 seconds faster then this year’s time! Well done!


The Blue Wave boys and girls track teams competed in the CIAC Winter Track Championships held at Hill House HS in New Haven. Class L events were held Saturday, Feb 15. Both Blue Wave squads came into the event each having finished second in the FCIAC East Division behind Ludlowe.

In the state championships Darien boys finished a distance 12th behind State Champs and host, Hill House HS. Darien was fourth in 55m Dash (6.73), fifth in the 4X400 (3:32.95), and second in the Long Jump (21.00’).
For the girls, the team finished sixth in a field of 22 behind Champs Windsor HS. Darien was second in the 600 m Run (5:08. 50), fourth in the 4 x 400 m Relay (4:21. 00), third in the High Jump (5 – 0) and first in the Long Jump (16 – 11).

In the Open Event the Darien boys team finished tied in 29th place.
Mardie Porter shares her winter adventure:

Another ski adventure! Three days at the Appalachian Mountain Club  Lodge “Gorman Chairback”. We left home when the temp was a freezing -14 below.  We trekked eight mile to the lodge as temperatures  warmed to near 17 degrees. 

The second day was on snowshoe on back-country trails. Day 3 we skied back out to our cars on a glorious day, with temps above freezing!!!

Sounds like a ball!


Steve and Patti Craig did well in their apple orchard this fall. They report harvesting over 20 bushels of apples. (Note: 1 bushel = 48 pounds). The Craigbo Cider Co. made 16 gallons of unadulterated apple cider, while also donating apples to a local farmer and food pantry.

Wave Football Coach Retires

Darien High head coach Rob Trifone is retiring. Taking over as head coach in 2007, Coach Trifone has compiled a 129 – 26 record (.832) including four FCIAC and three State championships. From 2015 to 2017, Darien ended each season ranked  No. 1 in the state. Trifone has had four of his sons in the Blue Wave program: Kevin of the Class of 2007, twins Bobby and Christian of the Class of 2016, and Mark, a senior who will graduate in the spring.
Trifone has been with the Darien football program for 15 years, joining as an assistant coach in 2005 and then taking over as head coach in 2007. Including his earlier time coaching Brien McMahon, the Coach has compiled a 252-86-2 record (.741).
Trifone was inducted into the FCIAC Hall of Fame in 2014, and has also been named Coach of the Year 16 times, including two times by the National Football Foundation, one by the CT High School Coaches Association and four times by the FCIAC.
He was inducted into the Connecticut High School Coaches Association (CHSCA) Hall of Fame earlier this year.

The Big 5-0
Reunion Central

Check Out the Photo Album page with Pictures from all 3 Nights
Send Us Your Pictures
From Our 50th!


Chris Eng Leventhal, Kate Mason Gredinger, Sue Geiger Johanson

Benny Bruno, Mark Tinker, Gary Gibbs

Tim and Jamila Potts

Folks From Hindley School

Sue Venarde Mahoney, Sue Geiger, Anahid

Thomas Lane and Edward Tyler
Upload by going to the Photo Album tab on left side
or send them to tapotts@darkfield.com or johndvdh@gmail.com


Georgianna Smith Bloom, Rick Bloom, Tom Lane

Charlie Smith and Lauren Fair

Carol Ann Augustus Summers and Bev Bonfoey

Patti Shaw Craig and Mardie Porter
Mark Paddock, Dennis Sullivan, Sue Venardi Mahoney, Janet Martin Fisher, Martyn Goossen, Kathy DelleFontane Goossen, Steve Craig


Dave Lynch, Barb and Jim Tully

Cliff Powell, Gork Boneman, Sandy McGill

Chris Eng Leventhal, Dennis Sullivan, Patti Shaw Craig, Dick Costello

Rick Weber, Chris Weber, Eric Joosten, Paul Hendrickson


Josie Mullen and Lauren Fair

Peter Johnson, Paul Dominis, Paul Buckley, Carolyn Johnson


Sue Geiger, Anahid Kavookjian Vrana, Ann Back Price


Josie Mullen and James Tully

Bill and Annie Schade

Ed Tyler and Bob Mercer


Dick Costello and Rick Poccia


Janet Martin Fisher and Sally Armus Shutts


Charlie Smith, Bill Guptill, Kathy Strachan

Tom Lane, Stu Traver, Jay Baker, David Miller

Bruce Frail, Eric Joosten, Vandy Van Wagener

Sue Venarde Mahoney, Kathy DelleFontane Goossen, Marty Goossen, Ed Tyler
Gary Gibbs and Chris Bischof

Our Schedule of Events


The Goose Restaurant at 7:00 pm.
Cash Bar, Refreshments, Free Appetizers 


Breakfast at the Sugar Bowl

A golf outing at Ridgefield CC 11:00 

Main Event at Tokeneke Club

Dinner and music at the Tokeneke Club


Weed Beach Paddle Pavillion
Lunch and refreshments

    Our Guest List

Pete White Dave Terry
Claudia Smith Davenport Kathy DelleFontane Goossen
Dennis Gavin Pete Johnson
Rick Poccia Janet Martin Fisher
Mark Beckwith Anita Conway
Bruce Frail Paul Dominis
Patty Mazza Sturges Sue Dickman Klein
Sally Armus Christy Rodgers
Mardi Porter Ed Tyler
Bill Guptill Mark Blackman
Georgiana Smith Bloom Kate Mason Gredinger
Pete Franklin Gary  Gibbs
Tom Lane Billy Harper
Anahid Kavoojian Vrana Dave Lynch
Lauren Fair Jimmy Valente
Tim Potts Casey Nickerson
Suzanne Nikola Baldino John van den Heuvel
Jim Morrison Chris Bischof
Josie Mullen Paul Buckley
Johnny Maul Skip Kennedy
Bev Bonfoey Barb Thorne
Marni Kent Hansell Bob Mercer
Bob Ierardi Eric Joosten
Dennis Sullivan Tom Milek
Gary Swartz Dave Miller
Steve Verses Jay Baker
Cliff Powell Ann Back Price
Steve and Patti Craig Anne Marie McGarry
Vandy Van Wagener Bill Schade
George Farrington Todd and Martha Robbins
Rick Weber Jane Seyferth
Sue Venarde Mahoney Mark Tinker
Joan Dobson Glazebrook Paul Hendrickson
Sandy McGill Ted Vanech
Jim Tully Stu Traver
Dick Costello Mike Lopriore
Charlie Smith Chris Eng Leventhal
Jane Genster John Wuerthner
Carol Ann Augustus Summers Anne Irvine
Ken Broska Paul Hepp
Dave Jefferson Sue Geiger
Allison Poccia Joanne Schoepf Reisser
Benny Bruno                 Kyle Hepp    
Kathy Strachan Pam Burkhardt Mele 
Peter Scholtz  
Comments from Class Members!

Mary Bass Brown: Have fun everyone! Enjoy - post pictures.....lot's of pictures!
Anna Lamberton Whelpley: So sorry to be missing this great time😫Have a blast!

Update Your Profile at

Hey You!
Be sure to say "Hello" in the Guest Book section!


Important Contact Info

Where to send Classmate info : darienhs1969@gmail.com

Where to update your profile and see classmate's info: www.50thdarienhigh69.com

Where to post your pictures: On Facebook, join

Darien High School Class of '69 members group

Thanks, and see you soon!
Christy Rogers on the Camino de Santiago
Pete White
Thanks for the Update!

Joanne Schoepf Reisser

Thanks for the Update!
We Thank the DHS 1969 Classmates Who Served
Skins and Terry Cummings
Mike Lopriore and Paul Hepp get together in Jacksonville, FL.

Hey, where's the invite? It's freezing up here!


Vandy Van Wagener - Good to hear from you!

Thanks for the Update.
Anne Marie McGarry
Thanks for Your Update!
Deb Ridabock preps for the end of summer
Greetings Anahid!
Great to Hear from You
Hot Fun in the Summertime
The perils of missing class on senior 'Skip' Day
George Wehmann's Pontiac Super Chief
Mary Grace Joynt and Suzanne Ferree

 Terry Cummings, Tim Maul, Cliff Powell

Tina Rollins McKay in Bali
Tina Rollins McKay in Bali
George Farrington, Mark Tinker and Jay Baker  Photo by George Wehmann
George Farrington, Mark Tinker and Jay Baker Photo by George Wehmann

 Shot of trip out west during summer of '69 when we hitchhiked to California. Mark Tinker's dad bought us the car to roam around California and back to CT. Thought I lost this. Great memories from that trip. Those were the days!  -George Wehmann

The names just keep on coming in!

(starting bottom left): Chris Garr, Ellen Johnson, Martha Whelan, Jane Hindenlang
Sue Dickman, Kathy McIntyre, Pam Burkhart Melee, Co Koppert (Young LIfe)
Bobby Grant, Kathy Fricke, Jackie Fitzpatrick, MaryLou Sivos
Heidi Gerber
Carol Augustus Summers, Anna Lamberton, Louis Belfour, Sara Schyler
Man in hat- L. (Ron) Hubbard, the kid on far right with hood is Mardie Porter's brother, Clark Porter 
The guy near top row hat and glasses: Middlesex science teacher "Booger" Bates
Right Center back row: The man in the hat and woman next to him-
Mr and Mrs Hendrickson (Paul's parents)! 

click to enlarge
The Duchess Restaurant, near Exit 13 South of I95 on the Boston Post Road, is planning to close. A proposal to build a 24 hour 7- Eleven store in this location has created a brouhaha in Darien. Residents say it is an unwelcome addition.
“In the interest of Darien, I see no reason to approve this site as a gas station; it will bring no added value nor enhance the quality of life in the town of Darien and may in fact have the opposite effect,” one resident said.
The Darien Police expressed concern over traffic increasing on the Post Road, pedestrian and crosswalk safety in the area, and potential criminal activity in a 24-hour convenience store/gas station on US 1 directly adjacent to I-95.
While a new gas station has not been built in Darien in the last 25 years, residents argue that less than 3 miles from this location on I95 is an Interstate rest area complete with multiple fuel and 24-hour food service.
Reunion Quiz
What is the DHS Motto?

Cheaper than Prep School!
Ivy League Here I Come!
Best partyin' school in Fairfield County!
Veritas vos liberabit
Reunion Poll
How do you feel about the new virus?
Too much attention to it
Not enough attention for it
Hit counter: 240788