Saturday April 6, 2019 there was a fire on Governor Park baseball field in Ridgefield, CT.

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The fire was set intentionally to dry the wet field and prepare it for play but it got a little out of control. What was worse than the field's condition was the media firestorm ignited by videos like this one, that were shared all over social platforms like Youtube

CREDIT: The native video was originally posted to Twitter by @AmityNorton. From what I can gather, that source video has been deleted. 

In the aftermath, the community found itself under intense pressure with people all over the country demanding answers. The fire was discussed in NYC on WFAN, the incident was reported on by Sports Illustrated, it was everywhere.

Once the national news media moved on, I was not ready. The problem for me is that there was never any personal recognition for who did it. I didn't think it was a huge mistake but it was a mistake and I like people to say "my bad."

For over 4 years I beat this drum and the longer it went on, the funnier it was to me. We referenced the fire every time Ridgefield was mentioned. It got to the point that I'd hoped there would never be an official explanation on my radio show (I-95 Morning Show).

But the answer was inevitable, it was time to put it to bed. The person that closed the book was Rudy Marconi, the longtime First Selectman of Ridgefield who joined the I-95 Morning Show on Wednesday (12/06/23).

Town of Ridgefield
Town of Ridgefield
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Lou: On April 6, 2019, there was a fire on a baseball field in Ridgefield and I've been yapping about it ever since. It just sort of went away and no one ever heard who was behind it. My contention has always been, somebody raises their hand and says I made a mistake and we all go on with our lives. What ever happened with that?

Marconi: "I don't remember." 

Ethan: Thanks Rudy, I love it!

Marconi: "What happened? A group of coaches, men, volunteers they didn't reinvent the wheel on this, prior to environmental concerns and consciousness that [fire] was used in the past as a way of preparing a field to be able to play after rain. Burn it off! One of the gentlemen felt why don't we just burn it off? We used to do that years ago, they ran down, got the gas cans, soaked the infield and torched it. People are in the stands like amazed, bewildered like oh my God, my son can't go play out there, look at it. The Fire Department got a call, DEEP came in and the rest is incredible. But how we resolved it? We're lucky here in Ridgefield, we're very fortunate Ridgefield has become a relatively affluent community. We had an individual call my office and said look, the guys who did that, they didn't mean to cause an environmental catastrophe which it isn't but it could have been much worse than what it was. They don't have the money to pay for this and on the other side of that argument you have people demanding that they be placed in the stocks in front of Town Hall, they were crazy. So, what we did, I asked one of the managers to get the word out that they should hire an attorney because this could have some serious ramifications, which they did and the attorney made an offer. The names were under attorney/client privilege information, that amount of money was received and our angel paid for the balance of cleanup."

Baseball on the Chalk Line
David Lee
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Lou: We didn't think anyone should get in trouble either, it's an innocent mistake. I heard about it on WFAN in New York City, an Atlanta Paper, it was everywhere. 

Marconi: "It was like wildfire!?" 

I never wanted, or expected anyone to face any kind of trouble. I just don't like any municipality, getting let off the hook for keeping secrets. I don't know what I expected, it was never in anyone's best interest to run to me and give me a name. We didn't get a name from Rudy Marconi or anyone else working in an official capacity and I guess that is going to have to be OK.

It is time for me to move on and consider this case, closed.

Unless........

Check out the Ethan, Lou & Large Dave Show Podcast on Apple & Spotify

The baseball field fire was not even why we spoke to Marconi. His appearance on the I-95 Morning Show was mainly about the gas-powered leaf blower debate in Ridgefield. Listen to the entire interview below for more on that, and how Marconi believes the town will need to adjust it's practices to account for social media.

Part 1 

Part 2

 

Ridgefield Playhouse Exec Shares Revealing Tales About Richards and More

The Ridgefield Playhouse and I-95 have had a longstanding and fruitful business relationship.The Playhouse, it's leadership and staff have always been welcoming to us and we like to think we've been good to them as well.

I've been doing the I-95 Morning Show for 15 years and in that time I've had so many wonderful memories in that building. We performed our Ethan and Lou 10 year Anniversary concert there, I've met countless celebrities at the Playhouse and have attended many of their shows.

Many of the top flight guests we've booked on the I-95 Morning Show have been courtesy of our association with the Playhouse. But it wasn't just the rock stars that got invited to our studio, the people behind the curtain have always been regular guests on our shows.

Jared Shahid is the new Managing Director at the Ridgefield Playhouse but not a new face to us. Ethan and I have hung with him backstage, we've had him in the studio and he and I even worked on a TV project together.

Jared is one of the best storytellers I know so we were delighted to invite him back on the show. Recently, Shahid joined us on the the I-95 Morning Show with Ethan, Lou & Dave. Whenever he comes in, he brings tickets and stories for our audience. These are some of the amazing behind the scenes tales he shared with us on Thursday (5/25/23).

Gallery Credit: Lou Milano

Some of Danbury + Brookfield's Best Churro Spots

A churro is a fried dough dessert found in Spanish and Portuguese cuisine. When covered in cinnamon and dipped in Dulce De Leche, it's one of my favorites. The question with anything worth having is, how far do I have to go to get it? If you live in Danbury or Brookfield, you are not going far at all. And, I'd put our churros in Danbury + Brookfield's up against any churro you can get anywhere. These are some of Danbury + Brookfield's Best Churro Spots.

Gallery Credit: Lou Milano

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