9th November 2012: Clarens Welcomes Steel Wings

Weekend WeatherWarning of possible widespread Hangovers expected Saturday and Sunday mornings.
Notes from the EditorSteel Wings are coming to Clarens for the weekend so brace yourselves for the thunder of Iron Horses and the splendid sight of some of the finest machines in the country, all gathered to celebrate their love of the ride. Clarens owes them a great debt of thanks for the fundraising they do, giving us bicycles for the Sector Police Forum last year and R15 000 so far this year for the purchase of a portable defibrillator for the Nursing Sisters (we don’t have it yet, and locals are urged to dig deep to help find the remaining R10 000 – remember, it may be you who needs it one day). This is their 9th annual rally in Clarens, and already on a rainy Thursday afternoon they are looking magnificent. Note: for those of you who still want to give a little more, Evil ink Tattoo’s and Vermac Tattoo’s are joining together on Sunday 11 Nov. to raise money for the children’s feeding scheme “Bana ba Hlokang” and our Police forum, that keeps Clarens such a safe place to enjoy yourselves. They are hoping to raise R10 000, so get some ink for a good cause. 

News Paper

The next issue of the Clarens News hard copy is coming out in the beginning of Decmber, please let me know if you would like to be in it, or if you should be in it. Whether you have a gallery, shop, guesthouse or service you would like to offer our (beloved) readers, please contact me now at editor@clarensnews.com


Cocktail bar

Over a truly Xlnt breakfast the other day at the Willows Center I couldn’t help but notice construction had just finished on Clarens’s first cocktail bar. It will be the official opening on Saturday when world renowned sitar player Jean Pierre will be playing from 12 onwards. If I see 2 or 3 of each of you there it may just be the sting in the tail…



Remember Red Nose Day? When the whole country wore big red splats on the front of their cars to support charity? Now we have a new initiative to support Rhino funds: get a big Red Rhinose for the front of your car (or bike) for R35 and know that R28.50 of it goes to anti poaching and rhino rehabilitation. They are available at The Phatt Cheff and at the Henn’s Tooth toyshop, or you can call Simon on 0824693832 to have one delivered. (They look especially good on the front of a Harley, btw)



I know you came here to eat the most delicious fruit of all, but a word of warning. Do not buy from the side of the road! It’s not just that they might have been stolen from a farm, but more importantly, they may just have been sprayed, which can lead to tummy troubles for the unwary. The Cherry Shop and the Village Grocer are both highly recommended, and if you really want to feast on them, the Ficksburg Cherry Festival is only a week away.



Wonderful news: we have a very exciting fund-raising event coming up. Chris Dalzell – who is in huge demand, all over the world, for his slide show on creating the Singapore Gardens by the Bay – has generously offered to do his presentation,  here in Clarens, specifically to raise funds for our Conservancy. And, the Protea Hotel are putting on a High Tea for us at cost, so that we can turn this into a very special event. I really hope that you can attend.


Tickets: R150 per person

To book Contact : Toni 082 4492 082 ( email tonibw@eastcoast.co.za)

Karen: 084 4201 082 (email: karen@kalm.co.za)

Tickets will be issued on receipt of proof of payment (see bank details below)

Tickets are also available in Clarens at The Village Grocer, Old Stone Bottle Store, and The Courtyard


To see the flyer and find out more details click here


Another last word on the Centenary

TV Broadcast from the Centenary will be shown on KykNET, Chanel 144

on the 17th December 2012 at 19:30 Hrs.



Things to do THIS weekend

Steel Wings

As you might know; Steelwings will have their Annual National Rally in Clarens during the weekend of the 9th 10th and 11th of November. We then decided to have our 3rd DSTV event in conjunction with the rally, in order to simplify logistical matters. Watching the attachment, the competition is self-explanatory. The winners, a number of DSTV staff and camera crew will be an intricate part of the Steelwings Rally festivities.



To see the advert click on the pic above

And this is how it looks right now outside of George’s Sports Caffe



Live Music

Grouse and Claret are having Slipstream unplugged tonight (always fun to see the boys jamming around a table and having a laff) and Steven Dixon on Friday night, should be good.

Friends is hosting the other face of Rooibaart, Ben Dover on Friday night, see you there.

Xlnt (at the Willows Center) has Jean Pierre over for cocktails on Saturday afternoon

Artichoke always has something on, pop in and have a drink with Bruce anytime.


Coming Up

Ficksburg Cherry Festival

17, 18 November


Click on the pic to see their website



Golf Club Championships





Clarens Craft Beer Festival

Already I am being swamped with queries about the most popular event in the Clarens Calendar


Please click on the pic to go the site and find out all you want


Business News



Standing up against crimeExcerpt from the Sector Police Forum publicity letter (fully printed here)
Success stories often have a down side and the Clarens community realised that action was necessary when their tranquil rural existence came under threat.

When the town became a tourism Mecca, a criminal element soon saw it as a potential preying ground. With tourists flocking to the charming town and a carnival-like atmosphere prevailing over weekends, ripe pickings were there for the taking!

Clarens, as other developing rural towns, has experienced a surge in criminal activities in the past few years. Unemployed youths started to acting as car guards and street vendors – to the detriment and irritation of tourists who wanted to enjoy a quiet stroll through the streets.

Increasing incidents of car break-ins, house breaking and illegal hawking at parking areas became the order of the day. This led to a realisation amongst residents that drastic measures had to be taken.

The Clarens Sector Policing Forum (Sector 1) took it upon themselves to find solutions…



Although Clarens is a haven from the challenges of living in a big city, no paradise is without its mosquitos. With this in mind we have some hints from the Sector Police Forum on how to keep our town safe and secure, here is an excerpt from their Newsletter, which is printed fully here


We try and concentrate on pro-active rather than re-active policing. Patrolling around the square during weekend daylight hours and night and day time patrols of the residential areas (especially hotspots as identified by the SAPS) has produced the required results.

The majority of reported incidents in Clarens are opportunistic in nature. The harsh reality is that we cannot, despite the best of intentions, prevent crime from occurring.

The best solution is to sensitise our locals and especially our visitors to take basic precautions. Herewith a couple of pointers:

  • Keep doors (back and front) locked – especially when you are braaing at the back of the house!
  • Do not leave windows without burglar bars open at night.
  • Do not leave valuables (laptops, cell-phones, cameras, wallets etc) in plain sight.
  • Never, never take in someone from the street offering a car wash or any other service – never ever!
  • For the locals especially – never, ever employ anybody without thoroughly checking references. The SAPS will gladly assist with a background check if you supply them with a copy of ID.

Thanks to Johann Lehman for all his work in this regard


4 good reasons to recycle!

We only have enough landfill space for the next 3 years and by the time that the last landfill site closes down; we would be building mountains of waste equivalent to 6 000 rooms per day.

One of the major contributors to greenhouse gasses (the gas in the atmosphere that prevents radiation from the earth to escape that in turn causes Global Warming) is Methane Gasses. Methane Gasses are mostly released from old landfill sites. Can you see how recycling will prevent Global Warming?

The materials that you recycle will go back into the production streams and it will save huge amounts of energy and raw materials.

It is the right thing to do!

Taken from http://www.mywaste.co.za/

One more tip: take the lid off the bottle before you put it into recyc, otherwise it takes up the entire volume of the bottle in the dumpspace

Things to do in ClarensSHOPS

The village is filled with an abundance of shopping, to see some of the local stores

(no franchises) click HERE



Tasty treats, snacks and picnic basket fillers available HERE



Once you’re done shopping go and have a bite to eat and glass of whatever you like,

to see them click HERE



Treat yourself to a good night’s rest and delightful hopitality at any of these

establishments, click HERE



Turn that special moment into the occasion of a lifetime, click HERE



And celebrate the event with an amazing adventure by clicking HERE



Why leave, you’re already here, so click HERE to find the home of your dreams



What have you and opportunities, to see what’s on offer click HERE



For those of you who have already made the best decision,  HERE are the people

who can make things even better



The numbers everyone should have are all available right HERE.


Another week, another woodpecker.    Well, three more actually.   Woody and Doris are delighted to announce the unseasonal arrival of their first clutch of hungry offspring, signalled by the loud cracking of eggshells in the night, below MTN’s failed tribute to post-modernist architecture and forestry.   Named Golum, Lefty and Squawk, these new additions to the avian population of Clarens were busy digesting their first meal as dawn broke over the prone bodies of bikers hibernating on the village square.    Yup, the Steel Wings are in town again, having taken flight from the urban smog to celebrate the birth of the Woody’s heirs with a 4-million decibel cacophony of flatulent rumbling.   Not surprisingly, the Guinea Fowl have fled the noise and even the White-Faced Duck have gone silent and sunk to their eyeballs in the reeds.   Speaking of which, the 12 Guinea-Ducklings and the subjects of my ill-fated observation of last week, have also had enough.   After weeks of attempting to master the art of rowing their reed rafts around the Golf Course dam, under the confused tutelage of their self-appointed foster-mothering White-Faced Duck, they too have had it and fled the scene.   Protracted paddling in a clockwise direction has exercised their left wings to the point of absurdity, while their under-employed right wings are hardly more than speckled stumps.    In a concerted mutiny, they made the shore and sprinted for the familiar shape of Gargantua Guinea Fowl, their biological mother, disappearing under the cover of her welcoming wings in the long grass.   Aaaah!    Sir David will be pleased at this heart-warming end to a tale of the very unexpected.


The Twitcher


( With his titanium pecker and cellphonicly charged love nest, we await the reply to Woody’s application to become the world’s first bionic bird by officially getting his own Steel Wings – ed)

Footage of the Township Tavern Tourshttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VtHheM6lGHo
follow on Twitter | friend on Facebook | forward to a friend