Time for a quick breath Clarens Craft Beer Festival

Table of Contents

Time for a quick breath;
Beerfest:  Thanks Clarens;
Thanks to the Beerfest;
Clarens Village Nature Reserve:  Plant of interest:  Habenaria falcicormis;
The Twitcher;
Community News: Draft Environmental Management Plan;
Other Community News;
Welcome Madame Butterfly;
Artisanal Bread – Freshly baked in Clarens;
This weekend: Surrender Hill Marathon;
Next Weekend:  Sensational Summer Sizzler – Challenge for Charity – 9th March, 2014;
Next Weekend –  Supper Theatre in Clarens;
Poetry Book Launch:  8th March:  The Turtle Dove Told Me;
It’s super rugby time again;
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Time for a quick breath

The photo above was taken last weekend at the beerfest.  And what a wonderful weekend it was.  The beers on offer, the food,  as well as the bands were all outstanding, but I think what impressed the most was the wonderful atmosphere.  Quite a few of the festival goers told us that this was their first visit to Clarens and that they were so impressed they’re planning to spend their future holidays here.   Well done to all the accommodation establishments, restaurants, and everyone else involved for making this such a special event.
Also impressive is how quickly the square was cleared and how quickly all the rubbish was carted away.  We are extremely lucky to have such a good municipal team, who together with our recycling angel Evon (see article below)  keep the town clean, neat and tidy,  The beerfest may be over but there are lots of exciting events happening both this and next weekend.  In fact, there’s just enough time for a quick breath before we all need to get into party mode again.

Beerfest:  Thanks Clarens

So the beerfest has come and gone… Phew! what a weekend.From the organisers, thank you very much Clarens for making the most special village in the country available for this event.  We know that many a first-time visitor was blown away by what’s on offer and have joined the swelling ranks of returning regulars.A couple of special thanks:Clarens Security: People who do not know this elite outfit are at a loss!  This is the first year that we’ve had decent security and we will most certainly make use of them again. These guys were super-professional, super-diligent and made our job so easy.  They put all the other companies we have tried to shame, and some of those are very well known in this village. Well done and thank you Daniel & Pitso; you were champions.Working on Fire: once again our boys and girls in blue and yellow served the brewers at the festival and once again, they were very impressed and complimentary. They also contributed hugely to the setup and cleanup operation without which we would have battled. Restaurants and Accommodation: thank you very much to Clementines, the Highlander and Artist’s Cafe for providing several meals for the crew from JHB – they were taken aback by the hospitality. And thanks to Johan Lehman for providing seriously discounted accommodation for them.The JHB team that partnered Clarens Brewery for the event loved being here and are keen to do the 2015 edition with us.  Great news!  If anyone wants to send an e-mail to them (comments, compliments, general thanks) you can mail gavin@shiftsm.co.za, but please copy info@clarensbrewery.co.za


Thanks to the Beerfest

Soccer Team Tshepong Clarens


soccer team photo[1]

soccer team photo[1]

A big thank you to Natalie, Stephan and the Clarens Brewery team for giving us the opportunity to sell cool drinks at the Clarens Craft Beer Festival this year and for your generous donation of the 2 kegs of juices which sold out! We were able to raise R4000! Which will go towards Tshepong Orphanages soccer team’s end of season function.
Our sincere gratitude,  Sherri Gersh & The Tshepong Soccer Team

Clarens News is planning to bring our readers regular updates on Soccer in Clarens.  Watch this space!

 Clarens Village Nature Reserve:

 Plant of interest:  Habenaria falcicormis

Clarens Village Nature Reserve Habenaria falcicornisDamien Coulson head ranger Clarens Village ConservancyDamien Coulson



Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “Bi-weekly Plant of Interest”. We’ll be looking at a member of the orchid family Orchidaceae, from the widely distributed Habenaria genus – sometimes referred to as “bog orchids”.Habenaria falcicornis is one of only a small group of wild-flowers that have featured in the bi-weekly Plant of Interest columns without an English common name. One could only surmise that the very reason for this upset is that the plant is really not all that common –at least not to the casual observer, and for that it earns its place as one of our “interesting” plants. It does however have a Sesotho common name: uklamkleshe. This not-so commonly observed wild-flower may be found in marshy or waterlogged grassland areas at altitudes of up to 2900 m. A.S.L., and its range extends from the Western Cape all the way through to Zimbabwe.Read more

The Twitcher

There are times when birds simply don’t feature in a Twitcher’s life, overshadowed perhaps by events of apparently great public consequence: a riot; an earthquake; birth; death; or a beer festival.

In and of itself, the Clarens Craft Beer Festival was what you might expect.  Four and a half thousand thirsty visitors, more food of generally good quality than you can shake a stick at and the happiest little village in the Southern Hemisphere.  Oh, and seventy-two pregnancies, sixty-nine of them unplanned and one uncertain; the balance involved a twin-conception for a pair of lovelorn accountants from Parys who managed the feat in the toilets of the Highlander.  In short, it was a runaway success and confirms that people of all three genders will travel clear across South Africa to sample their favourite cup of foaming brew.  God knows what next year will bring, but odds on five thousand five hundred are pretty short.  So brace yourselves, Clarenites, and practice your dance steps.   Read more


Community News: Draft Environmental Management Plan

In terms of s. 39 (2) of the National Environmental Management:Protected Areas Act, No. 57 of 2003, the Clarens Village Conservancy (CVC), being the appointed management authority in terms of s.38 (2) for the Clarens Nature Reserve, hereby submits a DRAFT Environmental Management Plan (EMP) to the public and relevant authorities for consultation. This draft EMP is compiled in reference to, and should be read with, the Dihlabeng Spatial Development Framework which was approved in 2013.

Hard copies of the draft EMP are available at:

– the Clarens public library in Bester street, Clarens,
– the Book Nook, above the Methodist Church Hall in Clarens (Tue 10h00-12h00 and Thu 14h00 – 16h00),
– Clarens Xtreme Adventure Company, Swart street, Clarens,
– Tshepong public hall in Kgubetswana,
– the Dihlabeng Municipal Office in Main Street, Clarens,
– the Village Grocer in Main Street, Clarens.

An electronic copy of the draft EMP is available for download at:

All comments and suggestions to improve the draft EMP, and all requests by individuals or organisations to be registered as Interested and Affected Parties (I&AP’s), should be submitted to the CVC on the forms provided with the hard copies, or electronically to cvc@webmail.co.za, or in any format to any one of the CVC committee members listed in the EMP (and whose contact details are also available on the CVC website) by 28 March 2014, please.


Other Community News

Bird Interest Group:  
Interested in being part of a Bird Interest Group?   Clarens News invites interested persons to contact us (editor@clarensnews.com) with their input and ideas.  We’ve had very few responses so far – come on Clarens residents.   Just think you may even get to meet the Twitcher!

Community Notice Board
Please note that we now have a Community bulletin Board on the website:  To view Click here


Welcome Madame Butterfly

Shops in Clarens Madame Butterfly

Nadine Grobler  opens her new shop Madame Butterfly in the On the Square Centre in Clarens, on 1st March 2014.  Nadine is looking forward to opening her shop in Clarens and says that this has been her dream for a couple of years.  Both Nadine and Jan Albert  see themselves as part of a new young generation of entrepreneurs inspired to teach others. Nadine certainly knows how to walk the talk, and has taught a number of young ladies in Johannesburg who started out with no sewing skills and a point where they are now employed as seamstresses. Following on this experience, Nadine is looking forward to starting up sewing and knitting classes in Clarens, and believes that this would be a way to make a significant contribution to the Clarens community.  Click here  to see some of the gorgeous outfits that Nadine has made.


Artisanal Bread – Freshly baked in Clarens

Artisinal Bread in Clarens

OH MY –  A tummy rumbling experience:  getting a pic of  Natalie Dell checking on a batch of Ciabatta loaves about to come out of the Mosaic Pizzeria oven.

Natalie lived in Clarens 20 years ago, but went off to Johannesburg seeking fame and fortune – but says all she got was a “burnt out husk of a person.”  So now she’s come home to Clarens, and she’s brought her bread making skills with her.  Natalie specializes in artisanal wood-fired bread, and is baking Ciabatta loaves, Ciabatta rolls, rye bread and brioche in Mosaic’s pizza oven.

Stop in at the Farmer’s Market (outside Bibliophile) to buy some of her fabulous bread.  (Get there early – I hear she sold out last week.)  If you can’t get to the Farmers Market (or  if you get there too late) you can also find her bread at the Village Grocer, or phone and order directly from her on 083 608 1441.   Natalie is calling her  business #goodstuff.  (What a great name!) and can also be contacted by email:  nataliedellsawyer@gmail.com


This weekend: Surrender Hill Marathon


Welcome to all the participants and their supporters.

The race starts tomorrow (1 March 2014) at The Base, 530 Sias Oosthuizen Street.  (And this is also where the race will finish.)  Starting time:  06h00.
There’s still time to enter:   Late entries will be accepted at The Base tonight (17h00 – 20h00) and tomorrow morning from O5h00-06h00.  (And – there’s also pasta available at The Base tonight, for all those still in need of some carbo-loading.)

Click here to find out more about the race


Next Weekend:  Sensational Summer Sizzler – Challenge for Charity – 9th March, 2014

Sensational Summer Sizzler Challenge for Charity - Clarens

Want to know more about this event?   Click here to read Tammy Hancock of the Clarens Tourism Forum’s letter about how it all works.

Not sure who you should donate your money to?  Click onto the Clarens News website link to Organisations in Clarens     as from tomorrow (the list is being updated right at this moment.)  You’ll find a list of organisations – all of whom contribute in some way to our Clarens Community, and who could do with your help.


Next Weekend –  Supper Theatre in Clarens

Supper Theatre in Clarens

For further details Click here

Poetry Book Launch:  8th March:  The Turtle Dove Told Me

Bibliophile book launch Clarens - Thandi Sliepen

Join Debra and Thandi  for a glass of wine and an easy afternoon at the launch of local poet and artist, Thandi Sliepen’s book, The Turtle Dove Told Me. There will be an exhibition of Thandi’s art and all are welcome to this special event.


It’s super rugby time again

Watch all the action at one of our local Clarens pubs (and if you want to watch it on a big screen go to Artichoke).  The atmosphere is great –   almost like being at the game!

This weekend we have two South African teams playing down under.



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