Clarens News 28th November, 2013: Happy Thanksgivvukah
On coming home;Happy Thanksgivukkah;StarSat : Change your view (TV Advert);Clarens Skies – Ophiuchus;Tshepong Christmas Party 2013;Bana ba Hlokang – Letter of Thanks;Environmental Education;Thank-you Clarens;Plant of the week: Dianthus basuticus; The Twitcher;The Clarens – Golf News;
Coming Events;The Dan Patlansky Clarens Guitar Weekend;Talking of Mushrooms; Classifieds
On coming home
Recently I was chatting to a regular British visitor to South Africa, but a first time visitor to Clarens. He was bowled over with surprise, he said, at what a delightfully idyllic spot this was. I asked him whether he had been to Golden Gate, telling him of its outstanding rock formations. He said he hadn’t. He said he would save that for his return trip from the Cape. Right now, he said, he didn’t want anything else to impact on his first impressions of what he referred to as a little piece of paradise.
Our photograph this week is of Mount Horeb and is taken from Craigrossie near Clarens. I visited there in the early summer of last year, a few months after I had returned from England. As I stood there looking across the water in the fading light, I thought of my decision to return to South Africa. Read more
The photograph above (also by Mary Walker) features in the 2014 calendar produced by and sold in aid of Cluny Animal Trust. Calendars can be purchased at Clarens Gallery, Clementines Restaurant and the Old Stone Bottle Store, in Clarens. Alternatively they can be ordered from Katherine on 0827886287, Jan on 0782462553, Helen on 0582230918 or by email to email@example.com . I’ve ordered several – as Christmas presents.
Celebrate Thanksgivukkah today – you won’t get another chance until the year 79,811. So what’s so special about today? Today is the first day of the Jewish holiday of Hannukah (which commemorates the re-dedication of the Temple in Jerusalem after the Maccabean military victory of the Syrians in 168 BC) as well as the celebrated American holiday of Thanksgiving.
This unusual event has come about as a result of a convergence between the Gregorian calendar which is solar, and which determines the date for Thanksgiving, and the Hebrew calender which is lunisolar, and which determines the dates of all Jewish holidays.
StarSat : Change your view (TV Advert)
You really must take a look at the advertisement which was recently shot in Clarens. It’s absolutely fabulous.
The footage of Clarens and its people is awesome – it could almost be an advert for Clarens.
Clarens Skies – Ophiuchus
Constellation of the Week
The Ophiuchus Constellation, also known as “The Snakeholder”, lies on the celestial equator and is depicted as a man holding an enormous snake with both hands. The snake is represented by the adjacent constellation Serpes, with Ophiuchus splitting the Serpes constellation to two parts.
Often times referred to in its Latin name “Serpentarius”, the constellation is associated with Aesclupaius, the famous healer in Greek mythology. “The Serpent” represented by the Serpes constellation, is divided into two separate parts by Ophiuchus. Serpens Caput forms the head of the snake whilst Serpens Cauda forms the tail. The snake is usually depicted coiling around the Ophiuchus man.
The Serpent Holder, Ophiuchus, is associated with the noted Greek healer Aescupalius.
Update on Ison
Gerald Rhemann in Namibia in SW Africa captured this photo of Comet ISON on November 21, 2013
Comet ISON is still holding its own after many speculations that it might’ve broken apart by now.
Thursday November 28 2013 marks the perihelion of the comet that has captured and held the gaze of so many. At 20:24:57 SA time, Comet ISON will be at its closest point to the Sun at 1.1 Million Kilometers away, and if it stays in tact, will then start its journey past our beloved Earth.
Tshepong Christmas Party 2013
Many hearts were filled with much joy and gratitude as Tshepong celebrated Christmas in all its glory.
Just as the halls of Tshepong were decorated with care, love and commitment, one could feel that those attributes abound throughout the centre’s grounds (with such wonderful staff at hand) and settle in the hearts of every child.
The excitement of the day was almost tangible and I am sure many will treasure the memory for eons to come. Thanks were given to all that made the day possible for the children in our community; the loyal staff without whom Tshepong simply could not continue forwards, as well as all the volunteers and community members for all their support in the manifestation of the dreams and hopes of the Tshepong Team, enabling them to enrich the life experience of almost 200 children in the Kgubetswana community.
It was also with great sadness that the children and staff at the centre said farewell to the adored Jamie and Mcken. These two incredible women have been focused on developing the art skills of the Tshepong children and, after many years and much growth, are now saying their goodbyes. The development of the artistic skills of Jamie and McKen’s students are astounding and the new heights reached because of their dedication towards their students, will forever be treasured in all witnesses’ hearts.
During this time of the year, events like these contribute magnificently to the gratitude and love of the masses, and we at the Clarens News truly hope that one and all will have a very merry festive season. (Genevieve Blignaut)
Bana ba Hlokang – Letter of Thanks
P.O. Box 180 Clarens 9707
Bana ba Hlokang celebrated their Christmas party on the 22nd December at Tshepong and what a celebration it was! 204 children each received an umbrella, a personal gift and ofcourse lots of goodies to eat. The Social Worker from Bethlehem organised a jumping castle for the event and only 6 children were allowed to jump at a time so the staff had their hands full trying to give everyone a turn. Every child had their face painted and many of the staff and older children dressed up in fun outfits.
A BIG thank you to the Protea Hotel, who not only provide a warm meal once a week during the year and do “craft workshops” with the children, but also supplied 10 huge cakes beautifully decorated and over 200 packets of chips and sweets for the party.
Starfish Global funders supply 150 of the children with school uniforms, blankets, food parcels, food for the pantry etc. throughout the year and they also donated some of the umbrellas and gifts for Christmas.
Thomas and Sarah and their dedicated staff have proved themselves as an invaluable team, who care for the needs of every child. Tshepong is indeed a place of great blessing. We thank them most sincerely for their hard work throughout the year and for their huge effort to make the Christmas party such a splendid occasion. Hours were spent decorating the hall, wrapping presents and just making sure that a lasting memory of sheer joy was created for every child.
Our appreciation to the ladies who baked cup cakes, to the dedicated management team, to those who supported financially.
Bana ba Hlokang
As of the 1st of November and counting onwards from April of this year, a total of approximately 1140 individuals have been the recipients of one or other form of environmental education through the rangers and Sherri Gersh of the C.V.C.
The majority of people who received training were local residents and several external groups were also catered for. This included the students of Clarens Primary (grades 1 – 7), Dihlabeng Christian School, Clarens combined, Moriting wathuto high, (ranger) Eben’s Environmental Club, the Thusanang Care Group, Jordania Primary School, Clarens Ladies Friendship Club, Clarens Working on Fire team, a host of township residents, the traditional healers, wood collectors and even the rangers themselves. Topics covered were myriad and included environmental issues and solutions, ecosystem processes, features and functions, indigenous and alien plant identification, ecosystem health, Balance in Nature and Community Based Natural Resource Management (CBNRM), to name a few.
The content of the EE has always been tailored to meet the needs and levels of understanding of a particular group or individual and can thus take the form of nature hikes, fun days with nature based games, lectures, informal talks, tutorials and workshops. A great deal of time and care therefore goes into the preparation for each event and it has been terrific to see the amount of positive feedback from all of those involved in the C.V.C. EE events. Many thanks to Sherri and the C.V.C. rangers for their outstanding dedication and enthusiasm. Thanks also go out to all our participants without whom we could not have hoped to have achieved such great success. We hope that the year 2014 brings as much and perhaps if it’s not too much to hope for – more success.
Letter from Nick and Cindy Osborne
My husband and I got married on the 16th November 2013 and decided a SA honeymoon would beat the typical Thailand honeymoons that many take.
We decided to keep it Local because it’s “lekker”.
So off to Clarens we ventured!
What an amazing time away.We simply wanted time to stop for us. From Sunday the 17th November till 20th November we hid away in this beautiful town.
Clarens has so much to offer.
We didn’t manage to get to do everything, but it’s given us reason to come back. We just wanted to thank ALL the towns people for a wonderful time in this beautiful town.
We have fallen so in love with Clarens.
A big thank you to The Clarens Country House and to Toni and Peter for such an amazing time at The Clarens Country House. Our new home away from home.
We cannot wait to see you all again, and thank you for making our time so wonderful.
Much love and appreciation,
Nick and Cindy Osborne.
Plant of the week: Dianthus basuticus
Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “Weekly Plant of Interest” where we’ll be looking at a member of the carnation family.
Dianthus basuticus subsp. basuticus (known as the Lesotho Dianthus, Lesotho Carnation or Drakensberg Carnation in English, Lesothose grootblom-wilde angelier in Afrikaans or hlokoa-la-tsela in Sisotho), is a dicotyledonous herb which often forms small mats on rocky grass slopes, crevices of rock sheets and on cliffs. “Dios” refers to divine (scent) whilst “anthos” refers to the flower, most likely referring to the heavenly scent of some species in the genus. What makes it interesting is that there are only 4 species of Dianthus growing in the entire Eastern Free State. D. basuticus subsp. basuticus was photographed on the Kloof Mountain Trail (Distr. Eastern Mountain Region – Mpumalanga) which would make sightings of this species rare unless you are eager for a bit of a climb. This little herb grows at altitudes of between 1400 and 3050 m A.S.L.
The Clarens – Golf News
This weekend – Weather
This weekend – Music
Friday 29 November, 2013:
The Grouse and Claret: 20h00: Violet Somedays
Saturday 30 November 2013
The Grouse and Claret: 20h30: Slipstream
This weekend – Sport
This Weekend – Other Events
Farmers Market: Saturday: 10h00 – 15h00 Outside Bibliophile
As always there is lots to look forward to
7 December: Clarens Open
14 December: Bark for Life
14 December: NG Kerk Flea Market
The Dan Patlansky Clarens Guitar Weekend
The Dan Patlansky Clarens Guitar Weekend will be from 6-8 December 2013.
There are 5 available spots and you can contact Susan : firstname.lastname@example.org
The workshop is unfortunately not open to the public, but a Show will be held on the last night, and one and all are invited to come enjoy the sounds created over this very exciting weekend.
Here is a link to a documentary from the Dan Patlansky weekend in Clarens:
Talking of Mushrooms
The Clarens Golf Course is sprouting mushrooms – and this reminded me of a favourite poem by Siyata Bhatt
If you named your daughter Garlic
Instead of Lily or Rose
She would travel far
to gather mushrooms
After a night of rain
She would rescue snails
putting them back on the broad leaves
with high stems able to support them
She would never lose
a crop of tomatoes.
You would never know
she was Garlic
because she would smell of roses –
her garden overflowing with fennel.
She would travel far
to gather mushrooms, that daughter
you named Garlic.
And unlike Tolstoy’s Verenka
She’ll meet a man
who won’t mind
Remember to check out the classifeds section. There’s another job offer this week.
Advertising on the classifieds section of Clarens News is free. All you need to do is to email your advert to