All posts by toni

Gladiolus crassifolius

Galdiolus

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to another exciting “Plant of Interest” article for 2017!! This week we’ll be looking at a striking member of the Iridaceae (Iris) family.

Gladiolus crassifolius (Thick-leaved Gladiolus in English, khala-e-nyenyane in Sesotho) is a widespread perennial Iris, occurring in grassveld at altitudes of up to approximately 2000
m A.S.L., where it obtains a maximum height of 100cm.

The Genus name Gladiolus heralds from the Greek short sword after which the leaves resemble; whereas the species name crassifolius is a union of the Latin “crass” meaning rough or tough and “folius” meaning leaves, in reference to the thick leaves.

The thick, firm leaves of this species are held erect by prominent veins, measuring around 600-700mm tall by approximately 100mm wide and are a grass-green to blue-green colour, usually burned brown at the apex. These form a basal sheath of overlapping leaves which spread out into a rough fan. The inflorescence of G. crassifolius is a spike borne aloft a stem; wherein the small flowers (25-40mm in diameter) are a light-deep pink and the lower two lobes have a darker purple blotch. Flowering takes place late summer from January through to March.

This lively specimen was photographed along the Sky Contour Trail in the Clarens Nature Reserve where it usually occurs in small clumps or in isolation.

Ecology

This species is pollinated by sugarbirds and long-tongued bees and is thus an important species within the grassveld biome.

Traditional uses

It has been used as a treatment for headaches by the Basotho.

Conservation Status

Regarded as of Least Concern by SANBI on account of its stable presence throughout its distribution.

 

CVC Photography Competition – Through the Looking Lens

Winter is here and it is cooold! Fear not – the CVC has news to warm the heart – the winners of the CVC Photography Competition – Through the Looking Lens!

Entries were received in 2 categories – Landscape, and subject: nature. Great photos were submitted and the judges found themselves hard pressed to select only a 1st, 2nd & 3rd place in each category. Each participant was allowed to submit up to 5 of their best images. The judges spent great care assessing composition, focus, creative perspective, the use of colour (or lack thereof) and texture in winning photos; however no distinction was made between DSLR and mobile images. Basic editing was permitted including colour, exposure and cropping adjustments and the result were some pretty impressive images. Some images were simply too good to ignore, and the decision was made to award the winning photographer prizes in 1 or more categories where exceptional images were submitted.

We nevertheless have come to a conclusion after considering all these factors – herein are our top 6 favourite photos for our 2016 autumn photo competition!

 

Category, Landscape:

 

1st Prize (Sponsored by Protea Hotel, Clarens) – Paul Naude – One night stay for 2 at Protea Hotel, Clarens plus breakfast & 1 set CVC postcards
Photo name: Adam’s Apple, taken near Glen Reenen rest camp.

Adams Apple - Paul Naude

 

 

2nd Prize (Sponsored by Ian van Straaten Photography) – Bear Hansen– Family photo-shoot and photography workshop in Clarens & 1 set CVC postcards.

Photo - Bear Hansen

3rd Prize (Sponsored by Hack ‘n Steek Knitting Club)– Kieta Weyer – A hike of Golden Gate’s Cathedral Cave & 1 set CVC postcards

Autumn    Kieta Weyer

Photo name: Autumn Dam – taken at Lake Clarens..

 

Category, Subject: Nature

1st Prize (Sponsored by Protea Hotel, Clarens)– Dons Kritzinger – One night stay for 2 at Protea Hotel, Clarens plus breakfast & 1 set CVC postcards

Photo name: Reflections in the mud, taken in Clarens

Reflections in Mud - Dons Kritzinger

2nd Prize (Sponsored by Ian van Straaten Photography) – Jondee Benson – Family photo-shoot & 1 set CVC postcards

Photo name: Waterfall, taken at the Blyde River Canyon, Mpumalanga.

Waterfall - Jondee Benson

3rd Prize (Sponsored by Hack ‘n Steek Knitting Club)– Bear Hansen – A hike of Golden Gate’s Cathedral Cave & 1 set CVC postcards
Photo name: Bee in Clarens!, taken in Clarens.

Bee in Clarens - Bear Hansen

 

A big well done & congratulations to all our winners!

Thanks also go to all our photography competition participants who supported the CVC, and an extra special thank you to our prize sponsors: Protea Hotel Clarens; Ian van Straaten Photography; Hack ‘n Steek Knitting Club and Du Toit Gas and Machinery Services, for your kind sponsorship of our prizes!

 

 

 

 

Vernonia natalensis

Vernonia Vernonia 2

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to the latest “Plant of Interest” article for 2016!! This week we’ll be looking at a striking member of the Asteraceae (Daizy).

Vernonia natalensis (Silver Vernonia in English, ileleva in Zulu) is an erect perennial herb, obtaining a height of 100cm. It is widespread from the Eastern Cape to Limpopo, growing mostly on grassy slopes in montane, high elevation areas and has been recorded at up to 2000 m A.S.L.

This lovely specimen was photographed on our Porcupine Trail in the Clarens Nature Reserve. It usually occurs in clumps, but may also be found as colonies. It is dormant during winter, but flowers from as early as August in warmer cycles, through to December.

The beautiful silver leaves of V. natalensis are lanceolate; undulating with the margins slightly rolled inwards and velvety to the touch. The leaves measure on average 40-60mm long by around 5-10mm wide. The dainty purple-pink flower-heads measure up to 10mm wide; are branched and appear flat. White tufted buds are often interspersed between the florets, giving rise to new flowers. Purple stigmas also contribute to the frilly appearance of this species.

Ecology

Butterflies, beetles and bees have been recorded visiting V. natalensis flowers in the CNR. The seeds with their hairy parachutes are dispersed by the wind.

Gardening

This plant makes for an eye-catching ornament in gardens, and can be propagated from seed or grown from cuttings. This versatility makes it an obvious choice for the amateur gardener.

Traditional uses

Reportedly, the roots and leaves of V. Natalensis have been used as a charm against lightning. As traditional medicine it is used to treat coughs, headache, and internal pains. It is an ingredient in medicines to ensure a healthy baby, although a variation of this is sometimes used to induce abortion. Several species within the genus are used as herbal teas.

Conservation Status

Regarded as of Least Concern by SANBI on account of its stable presence throughout its distribution.

Damien1-100x100

Article, photography and research by

Damien Coulsen

Head ranger Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Ledebouria revoluta

Hyacinth Hyacinth 2 Hyacinth3

 

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to the latest “Plant of Interest” article for 2016! This week we’ll be looking at a member of the Hyacinthaceae (Hyacinth family).

Ledebouria revoluta (Common Squill/ in English, Bokhoe in Sesotho) is a perennial herb of up to 15 cm metres and occurs in bushveld and grassveld from the Western Cape through to KZN to approx. 2100 m A.S.L. Growth is best in the shade of trees along streams and on rocky slopes in the grassveld areas. The distribution is largely summer rainfall but also includes winter rainfall areas.
The specimens pictured here were photographed on the Spruit trail where they prefer partial shade. The species seems to fare better in moister areas where it occurs in a darker green variant.

Ledebouriarevoluta belongs to an interesting group of succulents with Epigeal bulbs. The word epigeal is derived from the Greek Epigiaos , Epi meaning “above” and Gia referring to Mother Earth, thus “above earth” or “above-ground”, with only the root system anchoring the plant to the soil. These plants thus germinate above – ground in contrast with the majority of plants. As the common name implies, L. revoluta is regarded as the most common species within the genus. It persists for elongated periods in moister areas, but is deciduous in the drier parts of the grassveld and is thus relatively frost tolerant.

The genus Ledebouria was believed to be closely related to the genus Scilla or Merwilla; however this has now been proved a distinct genus. Huge variability in morphology has been observed for this species, likely as a result of ecological adaptations throughout its broad distribution. This is interesting in itself, and further studies will be required to ascertain whether these are actually sub-species within the genus.

The leaves of the Common Squill are lanceolate, and tapering at the points from a broader base when between 1 and 20 leaves may be fully developed by flowering season. These are a dull green (and may be rolled inwards) and often marked by purple or darker green dashes throughout the length of the leaf. The leaves envelop the bulb in a basal rosette. The inflorescence is a raceme and are held aloft a purple-grey stem. The flowers are small and bell-shaped, measuring around 5mm in diameter and are a purple-grey colour with deeper purple/magenta stamens. These in turn are held in clusters on short stems. Flowering occurs from September – January.

Medicinal

Regarded as an ethno-medicinal geophyte, a plethora of medicinal uses have been attributed to L. revoluta, including use during pregnancy; as an antiseptic for wounds; itches and scratches; in the treatment of diarrhoea and flu and for back pains. Antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and free-radical fighting properties have also been researched for the species utilising crude root extracts.

Ecology

A multitude of insects (including bees and butterflies) visit the flowers in spring for their nectar, thus fulfilling a role in the annual pollination cycle.

Conservation Status

Classified by SANBI as of Least Concern (LC).

 

Article and photographs by Damien Coulsen

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Calpurnia sericea

CalperniaGreetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to the latest “Plant of Interest” article for 2016!! This week we’ll be looking at a member of the Legumaceae (Pea) family, formerly known as the Fabaceae family (on account of the nitrogen fixing properties of the roots of most plants in this family).

Calpurnia sericea (Mountain Calpurnia in English, Berg-geelkeur and tloele in Sesotho) is a perennial shrub of up to 2500mm, with many erect stems occurring from the Eastern Cape through to KZN. It occurs near streams on moist soils in grassveld areas, in close proximity to rocks and boulders. This species has been observed at a maximum altitude of 2000m A.S.L., and is endemic to South Africa.

Nitrogen fixation – a trait characteristic of the family – is a symbiotic process between the root systems of the plant and nitrogen fixing microorganisms, wherein atmospheric nitrogen is converted to a form of ammonia or nitrate that the host plant can assimilate. This increases the nutrient content of the soil surrounding the plant, thus preparing the soil for larger and more complex vegetation to grow in a given area over time. This modification is part of the process known as succession; whereby more complex and suitable vegetation takes over from earlier & simpler pioneer vegetation. Through this process, it is believed that complete plant communities may change over time, allowing even eventually for the transition between say, grassveld – and eventually into forest vegetation (although other factors, such as climate may also come into play). In the Eastern Free State this is most evident in montane Kloof areas.

 

The leaves of C. sericea are imparipinnately compound consisting of 3-13 pairs plus a terminal leaflet and measure 60-120mm long whilst the leaflets measure 5-20mm long X 5-12mm wide. Small pods, characteristic of the genus are produced, measuring 10-50mm X 3-10mm. The flowers are small and yellow in terminal clusters, each cluster measuring approx. 60-130mm long. Flowering usually takes place from Dec to Jan; although with the recent late rainfalls, flowers have been observed until late March.

Ecology

The leaves of the Pea Family have been found to contain natural insecticidal chemical compounds. South Africa has a relatively small contingent within the family comprising 7 species, whilst the Free State is home to only 3 species.

Traditional uses

Reportedly, C. sericea has been used to disinfect wounds in injured livestock and to kill lice. In humans the leaves may be used to alleviate itching & the symptoms of allergic rashes. In Nigeria the seeds have reportedly been used to treat abscesses. It also makes good firewood and the heartwood has been used in the construction of traditional rock & mud shacks.

Conservation Status

Regarded as of Least Concern by SANBI on account of its stable presence throughout its distribution.

Damien1-100x100Article and research by Damien Couls0n

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

CVC Report-back April 2016

 CVC April

CVC April 2016 1During April, the rangers removed several dustbin bag loads of seed-pods of Datura stramonium – Common Thorn Apple – from the Clarens Nature Reserve. All parts of this plant are poisonous if consumed; propagate readily and are easily dispersed by livestock throughout the CNR. As such the seed containing pods were carefully cut and handled to reduce spillage of seed onto the soil. This plant has encroached rapidly in the CNR and if not swiftly dealt with, could pose a threat to biodiversity in the area. This is a Category 1b A&IP, requiring mandatory removal from all properties and natural areas – it may not be grown, sold, traded or transported for any commercial or domestic use. For more information about invasive plants and their management in and around Clarens, please contact the CVC at the details provided below.

Environmental Education

 

CVC April 3The CVC continuously improves on its’ outreach to the public regarding environmental issues – whether it be through workshops; presentations at local interest clubs; events and activities at schools; enviro-articles; guided trail tours, and more. Our stall at the Clarens Country Market (Saturdays) at the Bibliophile is a great opportunity for the residents of Clarens, and visitors alike to get to know the rangers and to enquire about the work that the CVC is engaged in with the community of Clarens.

Trail maintenance & enhancements

The Caracal Contour Cycle Trail received some much needed TLC after damage caused by cattle on the trail earlier in the month.  After some time and a good deal of energy from the rangers & Clarens Working on Fire team, the trail was looking better than new as several improvements were made, particularly in some of the steeper and inherently narrower sections of the trail. Work was also done on the Sky Contour & Kloof Mountain trails in preperation for the Ashburton MTB Cycle Series.

Special activities

CVC April 4

The Ashburton MTB Cycle Series made its’ annual round in Clarens over the weekend and brought many cyclists to Clarens. For the first time, the cycle race wound its way through the CNR on both days of the race. An estimated 600 and 900 cyclists participated in the race which brought them into the reserve on the Saturday & Sunday respectively. There were thankfully relatively few injuries, and in general the rangers received many compliments about the conditions of the trails as the cyclists passed through the reserve.

CVC April 5

Our rangers on patrol

CVC April 6

Wood collectors have been observed with greater frequency and the rangers are having to be increasingly vigilant that only dead invasive wood is collected from within the reserve. Please note that the harvesting of live wood of any kind from within the CNR is prohibited, and should such an activity be observed, please contact the rangers immediately. The snakes are out and about, likely as they seek appropriate shelter in which to hibernate throughout the winter – so please don’t shortcut through long-grass, wear boots and keep your eyes peeled. Winter is definitely approaching, and the concomitant array of fall colours is truly spectacular this time of year. Anywhere that you look in Clarens, the signs are evident as more and more leaves fall on our trails. It is now the perfect time to pick up your camera and take a few happy snaps – and remember you could use these in our up-and-coming photography competition – see our Facebook page and the CVC website for details!

Donations

The CVC has received a number of small cash donations at our stall at the Clarens Country Market (Bibliophile) over the past month.  As always, your contributions go a long way in the management of the CNR and improvement and maintenance of infrastructure.  Donations of any amount can find our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ClarensVillageConservancy or through our link in the Clarens News. The CVC Banking details – Acc. name: Clarens Village Conservancy. Acc. number: 330544489. Standard Bank, Bethlehem. Branch code: 055033.

Article and title picture by D. Coulson   Cell: 076 833 8910 or 060 307 1489

In text photo credits: D. Coulson and the CVC Rangers

Email: otgtechnologies@gmail.com

 

Helichrysum herbaceum

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to the 5th “Plant of Interest” article for 2016!! This week we’ll be looking at a member of the Asteraceae (Daizy) family, also known as the Compositaceae (on account of the composite arrangement of the flowerheads of all the species within the family).

Helichrysum herbaceum (Monkey Tail Everlasting in English and tlhako in Sesotho) is a perennial herb with many erect stems sprouting from a creeping rhizome, occurring from the Western Cape through to KZN. It occurs almost exclusively in grassveld but may overlap to a lesser extent with woody Kloof-vegetation. This species has been observed at a maximum altitude of 2600m A.S.L., preferring full sun.

Helichrysum 1

As the species name implies – herbaceum refers to this Helichrysum conforming to a herb-like morphology as opposed a woody morphology. This specimen was photographed on the Porcupine Trail. In full sunlight the papery ray florets take on a brilliant brown-golden sheen that can be difficult to observe directly for more than a few short seconds at a time.

Helichrysum 2

 

 Helichrysum herbaceum does not exceed a height of 400mm, with each inflorescence borne singularly aloft a flowering stem. The leaves are khaki-olive green, dulled somewhat white-grey by fine hairs covering the ventral surface – these hairs appear woven as if in a loose fabric. The hairs are largely absent from the dorsal surface. The basal leaves measure approximately 40-50mm long X 20-30mm wide with undulating margins. The basal leaves occur in a loose rosette, which falls away on the flowering stems in favour of an overlapping composition in which the leaves are considerably smaller, measuring around 20mm X 2-3mm wide. The flowerheads measure approximately 25mm wide. Flowering takes place from as early as December according to some sources, but generally occurs from Feb-May.

EcologyHelichyrsum 3

The morphology of many species within the Helichrysum genus is such that it facilitates growth in semi-arid environs, usually on thin or partially exposed soils.  Helichrysum plants are therefore drought tolerant. The outer florets are paper-thin; leaves are covered in fine hairs and the arrangements of both the basal and stem-covering leaves are all designed to interlink, thus reducing water loss. Fine hairs offer the dual function of both reducing water loss and retention – the arrangement of the hairs on H. herbaceum allow for the absorption of tiny drops of dew in the early morning.

Traditional uses

 Helichrysum herbaceum has reportedly been burned as an offering to the ancestors of various African tribes in order to profit from their divine blessings. The stems and leaves were also burned as incense in ancestral rituals.

Conservation Status

Regarded as of Least Concern by SANBI on account of its stable presence throughout its distribution.

 

Damien1-100x100Article and research by Damien Coulson

Head ranger Clarens Village Nature Reserve

CVC Report-Back March 2016

CVC Report back

Alien clearingcvc march 2

This past month the rangers have observed an increasing number of Datura stramonium or Common Thorn Apple, growing in the Clarens Nature Reserve and have taken measures to remove the poisonous weed wherever encountered. This is a Category 1b Alien & Invasive Plant (A&IP) as classified according to NEMBA (act 10 of 2004), requiring mandatory removal – see the article on this invasive published in the Clarens News for a detailed description of the adverse effects it has on humans. For more information about invasive plants and their management in and around Clarens, please contact the CVC at the details provided below.

 

Environmental Education

The CVC and a local volunteer have been working towards the establishment of a photography competition which aims to raise awareness of the intrinsic beauty and value of the natural environment. Great prizes have been locally sponsored and we have some ultra-keen judges aboard to help decide the winning photographs. Keep your eyes peeled and your ears open for more info relating to this exciting new competition launching mid-April. The rangers also lead guests on a guided tour of the Spruit & Mallen Wall. By the end of the hike the guests reported that they were thoroughly impressed with the level of knowledge and heart put into the tour by the rangers – why shucks!

 Trail maintenance & enhancements

cvc march 3The rangers and Clarens Working on Fire team have been hard at work preparing the Caracal Contour cycle trail and Titanic trail for the Easter holidays. Cattle had done much damage to the trails; however with the persistence of the CVC and WOF, these have been restored to their full glory. Preparations for the Ashburton MTB Cycle Series (15th – 17th April) are underway and a temporary path has been opened for the event from the top of the CNR, linking up with the sky-high Sky Contour trail and eventually, through to the majestic Caracal Contour.

Special activities

cvc report march 4Clarens experienced its first ever Lush Festival, based at Linwood farm over Easter weekend. The music fest attracted some 4 thousand campers; festival goers; runners and avid cyclists. A portion of the Lush Fest cycle race entered the CNR and several of the cyclists were able to enjoy the stunning scenery afforded from high-above in the reserve (well as much as we imagine they possibly could towards the end of a race) – all considered, it was a big success for everyone involved. The next big cycle event in Clarens is the Ashburton MTB Cycle Series wherein a total of 2500 cyclists will be taking part – 2000 of which are expected to cycle through the scenic CNR. This is almost double the 2015 figures and includes international riders and locals alike. The event is an amazing opportunity to showcase both the beauty and value of the CNR, and the race will be captured by a news-crew and televised on Supersport.

Our rangers on patrol

cvc march 5Wood collecting is on the rise as it always is on the approach to winter. Several concerned residents have spotted the wood collectors harvesting large volumes of wood along the length of the Spruit and the area of the reserve below Titanic Rock. The rangers have observed the collectors harvesting live wood in addition to dead Oldwood trees from within the CNR. Several more of our trail markers have disappeared and yet others have been found discarded some distance away from their original positions, elsewhere gates in the reserve have been bound shut with barbed wire and the prickly wire has been carefully removed by the rangers on numerous occasions. These prohibited activities may result in anyone caught engaging in them facing serious criminal charges. The CVC has a notion of the culprits’ identities in each case and are in the process of addressing the issue with the municipality and SAPS. Please be vigilant and notify the rangers of any suspect behaviour in the reserve and along the Spruit streams.

Donations

cvc march 6The CVC has received a number of small cash donations at our stall at the Clarens Country Market (Bibliophile) over the past month.. As always, your contributions go a long way in the management of the Reserve and Clarens as a whole.  Anyone willing to make a donation of any form and amount can contact us via our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ClarensVillageConservancy or through our link in the Clarens News. The CVC Banking details – Acc. name: Clarens Village Conservancy. Acc. number: 330544489. Standard Bank, Bethlehem. Branch code: 055033.

Article and title picture by D. Coulson   Cell: 076 833 8910 or 060 307 1489

In text photo credits: D. Coulson and the CVC Rangers

Email: otgtechnologies@gmail.com

Datura stramonium

Stinkblaar 1 Stinkblaar 2
Stinkblaar 4 Stinkblaar 3

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to the 4th “Plant of Interest” article for 2016!! This week we’ll be looking at a member of the Solanaceae (potato/Nightshade) family. Any plant can be of interest when it displays unique traits – always a favourite to the author, are plants that seem inconsequential at a glance, but chemically tell a whole different story – as this week’s PoI will convey.

  Datura stramonium (Common Thorn Apple in English, Gewone Stinkblaar in Afrikaans and lechoe in Sesotho) is an annual weed occurring from the Western Cape through to KZN. It can be found along roadsides, old pastures and in disturbed areas at altitudes ranging from 0 – 2400 m A.S.L. It is believed to have originated in tropical areas of the U.S. but was most likely accidentally introduced to South Africa among cereal grain.

The specimen photographed here is just one of many found recently growing in the area. It is often eaten and spread by livestock, resulting in fatalities. When even a small stem is cut, it releases an acrid scent (hence the Afrikaans Stinkblaar) which permeates the air for many metres. Cutting of a large patch of the plant can result in blurred vision, proving removal challenging and is a wholly unpleasant task. From a management perspective, the plant is regarded as a weed and declared a Category 1b invasive in South Africa – the detrimental applications and implications on an economic and social scale outweigh its value greatly. It thus requires mandatory removal from all public areas and even private residences.

Many species of this family contain toxic substances such as alkaloids (see medicinal uses) many of which are intentionally and sometimes accidentally ingested. This plant is notable for its many uses in the treatment of numerous ailments as well as the psychological effects that it imbues on the user as a narcotic. As with any plant or medicine, the use of the plant is all about dosage. Even the tiniest miscalculation can be the difference between a favourable effect on the body & mind or a fatality. It is not advised to use this plant or any of its derivatives without prior professional consent.

Physiologically, the plant may obtain a height of 1.5 metres, and is much branched as a weedy shrub. It may occur in isolation but is usually observed in large scraggly patches in older stands. The ovate 4 chambered fruit (measuring approx. 50mm long by 30mm wide) are a bright green when young and covered in multiple short, nasty looking spines of around 10mm. When dry, the fruit brown and split down the centre, releasing the dark brown seed. The leaves are large – measuring in excess of 100mm by 60mm and have irregularly toothed margins. Each leave stalk holds one large purple-white tubular flower (these are closed in sunlight and open at night and in partial shade). Grows Nov – April.

Ecology

Increasing number of D. stramonium in the veld is a symptom of overgrazing or degradation.  This is especially of concern since the spread of this species has only been widely observed this past summer in the region, and is another indication that the cattle and goats in the reserve are indeed a factor leading to the reserves decline. Removed before a seed-bed can be accumulated, the problem can be reversed with regular follow-ups.

Medicinal uses

Dubbed “malpitte” (mad pips) in Afrikaans, the ingestion of a high dosage of this plant (as seeds) – according to one source who confessed in their youth to consuming parts of the plant – can lead to a variety of symptoms including disorientation, rage, anxiety, hallucinations, etc. At low doses extracted from the leaves it may be used as a sedative and depressant.

Traditionally, infusions have been used to relieve asthma and reduce pain. They may also be used to induce a trance for ceremonies and act as aphrodisiacs. A fresh, warmed leaf may be applied in a poultice to treat rheumatism, gout, boils, abscesses, and small wounds. The green fruit may be sucked to treat tonsillitis, sore throat and even toothache. The smoke from a dried leave is inhaled to relieve bronchitis and asthma.

At one stage extracts of the leaves were concentrated in certain cough syrups to treat respiratory difficulties; although modern cough syrups do not include the compounds from these extracts. Today, 2 compounds from D. stramonium are still commercially utilised: the alkaloids atropene, in eye-drops; and hyoscine for motion sickness. Hyoscine can also be injected in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease and painful back spasms. The pharmacological effects exerted on the human body by various parts of D. stramobium include: increased heart rate; smooth muscle relaxant, saliva, sweat and other secretant reduction, partial ocular paralyses and even glaucoma.

Conservation Status

Not classified by SANBI, regarded as a Cat1b invasive weed according to NEMBA (10 of 2004).

A Clarens Love Story

 

 van reenen 0244 copy van reenen 0248 copy

 

The eastern Free State is God’s own country. Wide open plains as far as the eye can see occassionally punctuated by rock outcrops & rolling grasslands flanked by magnificent mountains which form part of the western foothills of the Maluti mountains. This time of the year the landscape is lush & green, seasonal pink & white Cosmos flowers adding splashes of colour to an otherwise drab roadside. It is a landscape that is good for the soul which instantly liberates you from the confines of city life. This is big sky country inhabited by big hearted people. People still in touch with their humanity, still in touch with the old-fashioned, farming virtues of kindness, hospitality, generosity, courtesy & civility. The area has a rich local history of story-telling, legends & African Basotho folklore.This story is about Valerie Wilcocks & Johan Bestendig De la Harpe, a young couple in love. Only a year separated them. Valerie was a beautiful young woman, spirited & independent minded & her boyfriend Johan, a handsome & adventurous young man in his prime.

It was the summer of 1932. Clarens was only twenty years old, a tiny village established in 1912 with dirt roads & sandstone cottages built by Cornish stonemasons. Named after the eponymous Swiss village where President Paul Kruger spent his last years in exile. The young lovers would mount their horses & ride out from the farms of their respective families to meet at a rendezvous in the mountains near Clarens so that they could spend time precious together. They met in secret against the express wishes of their parents because of a long simmering feud between the Wilcocks & the De la Harpe families. Through the ages the sandstone caves in the area served as dwellings for San hunter-gatherers, provided shelter for Basotho worshippers & refuge for Boer families fleeing farms torched by British troops during the Anglo Boer War. We can only speculate but perhaps the young lovers met in one of these caves.

One day while riding near Mont-Aux- Sources, cruel fate unleashed a double tragedy upon their families. The young lovers were struck & killed by lightning. Their grieving families set aside their differences & buried the young lovers next to each other. Valerie was twenty two years old & Johan was twenty one. They died on 18 December 1932, one day after Johan’s twenty second birthday.

 When you travel on the road from the picture perfect Free State village of Clarens towards the Golden Gate Highlands National Park, after 17 kilometres or so you will drive through the check point & after a few kilometres you will see a small cemetery on the left hand side in a grass clearing. Turn off the road & stop next to the Van Reenen family cemetery. The dozen or so graves are enclosed by a low sandstone wall. Above the cemetery on the right, the Rooiberge of the eastern Free State with their eroded cliffs & exposed, horizontal sandstone strata in golden hues of ochre, red & orange, stand as silent sentinels watching over the graves.

Behind the cemetery, on the banks of a river which meanders through lush grassland & reeds, a solitary Weeping Willow tree, its long, thin branches whipped by the wind. This is a well chosen & peaceful, final resting place for loved ones. In this tiny cemetery on the side of the road you will find the graves of Valerie & Johan lying beside each other. In the same cemetery you will find the grave of a brave young hero called Nathan van Reenen lying just below below the tombstone of his brother Laurens. Nathan was slain by an unknown assailant on 7 December 2013 in Durban whilst coming to the assistance of a victim of crime. He was sixteen years old.

The local Sotho people living in the area say that when dark storm clouds gather, you will see Valerie & Johan riding off into the distance.

Ride on young lovers, ride away,

Ride on & forever to a better day.

 

“May God bless & keep you always,

May your wishes all come true.

May you always do for others, 

And let others do for you.

May you build a ladder to the stars, 

And climb on every rung.

May you stay forever young,

Forever young, forever young, 

May you stay forever young.”

Bob Dylan – Forever Young

Costas Ayiotis

Pavementista

Clarens 

25 March 2016

PYD Annual Career Exhibition around the corner

PYD ANNUAL CAREER EXHIBITION AROUND THE CORNER

Paphama Career Exhib.

 

 

 

Various influential reports have recently confirmed that the crisis in Science and Mathematics Education has deepened in our country. This crisis is forming an obstacle in the way of African advancement and is effecting the growth of the economy in South Africa. School performance of learners clearly indicates that:
The national crisis in (particularly) Mathematics and Science education in South African schools has deepened.
Learners are not exposed to modern teaching strategies, including the use of technology in the Mathematics and Science classrooms.
Not nearly enough FET learners will qualify for Science, Engineering and Technology (SET) or Commerce degree or diploma programmes at HE institutions. (see e.g. http://www.cde.org.za/article.php?a_id=264)

Since 2012 Phaphama Youth Development (PYD) has been hosting Career Exhibitions for 10 High Schools from Dihlabeng Local Municipality and the improvement since then in schools has been impressive. The feedback received from the schools and the Local Department of Education is humbling.

PYD is a NONPROFIT Organisation (068 – 735) and PBO (930037537) which was established in 2008 and registered in 2009 to respond to the community health and welfare services free of charge. Their offices are based in 190 Kgubetswana in Clarens. The organization operates in Clarens and nearby towns subject to demand of the service. They strive to serve the poorest of the poor, with no thought of who deserves help, but only who needs help!

PLAN AND INVITATION

Phaphama Youth Development will be hosting its annual Career Exhibition in April 2016 which will be targeting all Grade 12 learners from all the Public Schools around Dihlabeng Local Municipality. This year’s exhibition will be the biggest Career exhibition PYD has hosted so far, targeting over a thousand matriculants.

Since PYD started with the career exhibitions and other educational programmes it has seen much change in the education progress of many children of with the pass rate within Dihlabeng Local Municipality having increased over the past 3 years. Many learners are getting admitted in the higher learning institutions.

Organisations and individuals are therefore humbly invited to be part of this life-changing event whereby they will be given a chance to put up a stall and exhibit. Organisations are welcome to give a presentation on Careers available in their structures and the channels which young people should follow in order to access bursaries, internships and learnerships.

THE EVENT WILL BE HELD AS FOLLOWS:

DATE: 15 April 2016
TIME: 09:30 – 16:00
VENUE: Bethlehem Showgrounds
ENTRANCE AND EXHIBITIONS: Free

The 1 day program will enrich the youth in the areas of technology, computers, multimedia, writing, art, math, science, literature, gaming, the Internet, study skills, and social skills.
The primary function of a Career exhibition is to offer students the opportunity to consider their future and interact with various avenues of employment, training and/or further education.
There is hope that this program will create more opportunities for young people to change their way of thinking, build confidence, foster creativity, and spark interest in life building activities instead of alcohol, Drugs and Sex.

The Army Base, which next to the showgrounds, will be exhibiting the following Careers just to mention but a few:

Army Medics
Water purification
Bomb Squad
Engineering
Human recourse
Marketing and ICT

For more information or clarity anyone is welcome to contact Ntsebe Mofokeng on 078 245 1709 or Onward Mvurume on 073 054 3145.

Kniphofia triangularis subsp. triangularis

Kniphofia triangularis subsp. triangularis Kniphofia triangularis subsp. triangularis Kniphofia triangularis subsp. triangularis

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to the 3rd “ Plant of Interest” article for 2016!! This week we’ll be looking at a member of the Asphodelaceae family.

Kniphofia triangularis subsp. triangularis (Manderin Poker in English, Motosi in Sesotho) is a monocotyledonous perennial herb that occurs in the Eastern Cape through to KZN at altitudes of up to 2500m A.S.L. As with most species of the genus Kniphofia, the Manderin Poker is most suited to moist grassveld, nearer vlei’s and on the banks of mountain streams.

The specimen pictured here was photographed on the banks of a small stream on the Kloof Mountain Trail where, in this instance it grows in solitary, or otherwise in small groups.

The leaves are narrow and grass-like, measuring approximately 500-600mm long by 2mm wide, with relatively smooth margins. The inflorescence is a roughly triangular/wedge-shaped spike (80mmX50mm) atop a narrow stem of 600mm. The individual tubular flowers are a vivid orange, measuring 20-40mm X 4-5mm. Flowering is usually from December – February; however because of the dry summer and late rains associated with El Niño and La Niña respectively, these have only been observed to flower from around early February, well into March.

Ecology

Frequented by butterflies and other pollinators, this species plays an important role in maintaining the ecological diversity of wetland areas throughout its range.

Gardening

Kniphofia triangularis subsp. triangularis makes for a dainty yet attractive garden ornamental. When planting from seed, make sure to plant in moist, well-drained soil in full sunlight. A light mulch layer may be needed for its first year in the Free State where frost is common in winter.

Conservation Status

Classified by SANBIas of Least Concern (LC).

 

Damien1-100x100Article and Research by Damien Coulsen

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

 

A Visit to Motoulong (Fertility Cave)

Fertility Caves 0022 Fertility Caves 0029
Fertility Caves 0034 Fertility Caves 0036


If you have an interest in cultural matters, or even if you just want to go on an outing, I can certainly recommend a visit to Motoulong, also known as the Fertility Caves.   This is not a typical tourist destination – and perhaps that is what makes it so special.   There are no shops or restaurants, no info centre, and not even an ablution block (which may put some people off) but the sheer size of the caves, and the spiritual essence held within them is bound to move you.   Motoulong is considered to be a sacred place and many visitors make their way to the caves (especially over weekends).   Some come to worship God, some to honour their ancestors, some to seek an answer to a vexing problem (often related to fertility) and ofcourse there are those that are merely curious.

To get there take the Clarens/Fouriesburg road and turn off onto the dirt road which is signposted to Surrender Hill.   Follow this road until you see a gate on your right and the Haritage site sign.   You may have to wait for a few minutes for someone to open the gate and pay an entrance fee before gaining entrance to a large parking area.

Last December I was lucky enough to visit Motoulong in the company of Niki Roy.   After parking the car, the first challenge was crossing the Little Caledon river.   Fortunately,  a large fallen tree trunk has bridged the river and crossing was relatively easy.   We then followed a shady path which ran alongside the river – it’s an easy relaxing walk until you get to the next river crossing.   The river was flowing strongly and the scramble from rock to rock in order to cross looked quite daunting.   Luckily there were quite a few “pilgrims” who had formed a line to ferry their luggage accross the river.  Niki and I fell in, and were soon passing parcels, blankets, and even a live chicken forwards to the next person in the line.   Finally, when all the luggage had reached the opposite bank, we too were helped accross – going from hand to hand rather like two very precious pieces of luggage.

Once across the river there is a short climb up to entrance of the cave.   Motoulong is not really a cave in the traditional sense, but rather an enormous rock overhang, moulded by the forces of nature over millions of years, into a deep, high-ceilinged cavern – deep enough to provide ample shelter and high enough to allow for plenty of natural light.    The floor of the cave is wide, smooth, and dotted here and there by well demarcated hearths where people have come to stay,  along with their goats and a collection of cats.   Motoulong is however, first and foremost a spiritual area.    Some of the larger rocks are adorned with candles – and in the same way that I want to light a candle when entering one of those large cathedrals in Europe, I had the immediate urge to light a candle.   (Luckily Niki had suspected that this might happen and she had brought a few candles along with her.)   There are recesses within the cave where visitors can meditate, and some leave messages.   Others collect the water which drips out of the cave walls, and it is said that this is Sediba water and has healing properties.

Further into the cave  one comes into a very quiet, beautifully swept area.   This is where Sam – a highly respected spiritual man used to live and study.   Sam is has moved on but his presence is still felt as no-one lives in this part of the cave.   We stopped for a while to enjoy the view and watch people crossing the river below us  (a slow and careful process) before deciding to explore a path which seemed to head back towards the car-park area, rather than face the crossing over the rocks again.

Our “alternate route” hugged the river bank.  Having been swelled by water from Katse Dam in Lesotho, the river was flowing strongly with fresh clean mountain water on its way to relieve drought stricken areas downstream.   We were right in guessing that the path would end up back at the car park area, but hadn’t counted on the fact that we would have to cross the river again – and this time without the help of a fallen tree trunk or helping hands.   Eventually we found an area where the river was shallow enough to wade across – almost waist deep in the icy cold water from Katse.

Our visit to Motoulong will always stand out as wonderful, memorable morning.  Whilst not really a tourist destination, I would recommend it to anyone wanting to experience something different.

 

CVC Report-Back January 2016

Clarens Village Nature Reserve: Our rangers do sterling work looking after what must be one of Clarens’s most important assets. Furthermore, their Environmental Education projects will, I’m sure go a long way towards ensuring that this precious resource will continue to be protected well into the future.

Jan report 1

Jan report 2

Gomphorcarpus fruticosus

Milkweed 2 Milkweed

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to the very first “Plant of Interest” article for 2016!! This week we’ll be looking at a member of the Apocynaceae (Milkweed family).

Gomphocarpus fruticosus (L) subsp. fruticosus (Vlei-klapper/Melkbos in Afrikaans, Milkweed in English, Modimolo in Sesotho) is a multi-stemmed perennial herb of up to 2 metres which possesses a poisonous white milky latex in the leaves and roots. It is common throughout the provinces of South Africa from sea level to approx. 2400 m A.S.L.

The specimen pictured here was photographed on the Kloof Dam Trail on the right-hand side of the trail as you approach the Kloof. It is often associated with riparian areas, and areas that have been previously disturbed through anthropogenic or natural causes. It is indigenous but is mostly regarded as a weed in S.A. Naturally such a specimen would exhibit a degree of both frost and drought tolerance.

The leaves are slightly curved, narrow & opposite, measuring approx.50-120 X 20-35mm. Flowers are green-yellow (approx. 8mm across) and held aloft in pendulous clusters and followed closely by the large, bladder-like and yellow-green seed pods. The fruit pods are inflated, light-weight compared to volume, covered in sparse bristles and tapering to a point. Flowering occurs Nov – Apr (summer – autumn) and reproduction takes place primarily through seed but also through suckering. Uses:

Commercial products

The seeds are coupled to hairy “parachutes” which have been used as kindling.

Medicinal

Due to the poisonous milky-sap, the leaves of the plant have been finely ground and used as a snuff as a mild sedative against headaches and as a treatment for diseases such as tuberculosis. Decoctions of the leaves can be used as an emetic (nausea inducing substance) to improve health. The roots have been reportedly used as a treatment for general pain and stomach aches. Use of the leaves or roots is poisonous to humans and livestock when ingested in non-specified quantities as some of the active compounds include cardiac glycosides.

Ecology

Frequented by the Monarch Butterfly which derives its un-palatability from the poisonous milky latex of G. fruticosus (L) subsp. fruticosus upon which it feeds.

Conservation Status

Classified as a weed and defined under the SANBI as of Least Concern (LC).

Damien1-100x100Article and Research by Damien Coulsen

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Clarens Creche gets a boost

Medi Care Kids enjoying their donated equipment  Medi Care Kids responded with a beutiful song to Golden Gate
 Golden Gate Acting Park Manager  - addressing the audience during the handover ceremony (1)  Golden Gate Choir entertained the audience

 

On Friday 22 January 2016, children and staff members from Medi Care Creche in Clarens were all jubilant after a generous donation of equpment and educational toys from Golden Gate Highlands National Park(GGHNP).

Although the items are not brand new, they had been lying in the Park unused for some  and donating it to a worthy institution seemed like the best idea. Soccer balls, dolls, bicycles and writing board slates are some of the items that were donated to the Creche.

The creche has 38 children (between the ages of 08 months and 5 years) and four educator and was launched in 2008 and caters for the children from the surrounding farms and Fouriesburg. Since its inception they have been struggling to get some of the basic equipment to use for the children’s learning and development.Golden Gate has been on a mission to live out the organisation’s vision of “A sustainable National Park System connecting society”  and grabs any opportunity available  to give back to the community, so far education seems to be the main beneficiary. In the past the Park donated school shoes to the children in the neighbouring schools.

Victor Mokoena, Acting Park Manager of GGHNP, said the donation was one of the many projects that SANParks gets involved in to assist the communities adjacent to the Parks, ‘We are very proud to see all these happy smiles here today and we hope we could do more to see every child in our community this happy” he said.Managing Director of the Creche, Meisie Khumalo was ecstatic at the donation “we are very grateful to SANParks for all they have given us, we hope it will really have a positive impact on our children.”

In December 2015 as part of the Corporate Social Responsibility project, the organisation handed a fully fledged science laboratory to a school in Clarens.

Issued by: Issued by SANParks Northern RegionDivhani Maremba, Northern Region Communications Manager. Tel: 012 426 5304,Cell: 074 588 5789 or Email: divhani.maremba@sanparks.org

Clarens Square: 26 March 2016

Notice from Clarens Community Forum

Dear Clarens,
Clarens Square: 26 March 2016

The NG Church in Clarens has for, at least, the last 20 years hosted a flea market on the square on Easter Saturday. All the proceeds of this market are used to uplift the community of Clarens. The church is involved in feeding schemes, schooling and a host of other charity initiatives.

Easter Saturday (26 March 2016) is a very important day for the continued support of the various community projects the church contributes towards, and has become an institution on the annual calendar of events in Clarens.

We have become aware that the AGS Church in Bethlehem has booked the square on the 26 March 2016 for its own market.

As business owners and residents of Clarens, we strongly object to this as all the funds generated will be taken out of the community of Clarens and put to use in the Bethlehem community. We feel that any charity event held on our square needs to be for the raising of funds that are directly put back into the Clarens community. This is of vital importance for the continued support of the various outreach programmes into the community.

We herewith request consent of business owners and residents of Clarens that support this petition.

Kindly respond to this notice granting the CCF permission to add your name/business on the list, accompanying the above letter directed to the Dihlabeng Municipality. If you have signed the initial form, we appreciate your support.

We trust that you will attend to this petition as a matter of urgency in a fair and timeous manner.

Yours sincerely,

Clarens Community Forum

Solving Social Problems facing Clarenites

14 January it is. Just before 9am a number of cars queued outside Margaret’s residence. A number of mature men and one lady, Pat Wagner made their way into the yard, straight to the sitting room. As a social player, the coordinator of Phaphama Youth Development, I found myself in the meeting, where almost everyone else qualifies to be my parent. What is this all about? Solving the issues that affect Clarenites is what the hearts of these mature men and women beat for, I can testify. For about an hour and a half the ten of us deliberated on ways of solving social issues, both ongoing and future plans.

Social Concerns is a wheel inside the Combined Churches In Action (CCIA) wheel. CCIA is an umbrella organisation that focuses on helping the needy holistically. Social Concerns is the arm that deals with issues that affect families and individuals, coming up with solutions that help individuals become self-sustaining. It works hand in hand with the Social Workers from the Department of Social Development and the South African Police Service. A Social Auxilliary Worker has also been appointed and she will be starting work on 1 February 2016. She will be based at Tsepong.

Social Concerns has in the past helped children with parents from Lesotho gain access to South African schools. It has also helped people who need counselling, helping them find meaning in life. In every situation where this arm gets involved, the aim is to leave a situation completely solved.

For some time now Social Concerns has been pushing to have a Safe Haven established, and relenting is not being put as an option. A Safe Haven, once established will be a place where people in danger of emotional damage or with no place to stay can be housed temporarily, while working out a permanent solution to the challenge.

Any challenge can be harnessed, when like minded people of great capacity bring their efforts together. This is the platform that Social Concerns has created. You can play a part in this. We can put our resources and knowledge together to improve the sanity level in our community.

To be part of the solution, visit Tshepong in Kgubetswana during office hours.

Onward 2Posted by Onward Mvurume

January 2016

Support a Notable Cause in 2016

I am excited to start the year with an article on some work that is focused on changing lives and establishing humanity in dominance and destiny mustering.

Bethel Christian fellowship is a church that has been in existence in Kgubetswana since 24 October 2011. The church focuses on building communities ruled by love. It also emphasises the importance of family values, where a family is made up of a father, mother and children; all staying together in harmony.

Since its birth, Bethel has hosted five international conferences, four of them under the brand TTiG, which stands for Total Trust in God. The TTiG conferences have become a typical pilgrimage, with participants coming from as far as Virginia, Potchefstroom, Klerksdorp, Johannesburg, and Zimbabwe.

Last year’s TTiG conference was held from 7 October to 11 October at Kgubetswana Community Hall. Restaurant owners, shop oowners and lodges benefited from the traffic that came, just for TTiG. The church is thus benefiting the business sector also, in Clarens.

Bethel is growing and the founding pastor, Tawanda Muviyi has written the letter below, as the church focuses on making more impact in the community:

Greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Our ministry has been moving from glory to glory since its inception in October 2011, growing slowly in terms of numbers but significantly fast spiritually. We have gone through challenges but our God has proven bigger than all of them, we came out victorious.
For some time now we have been based on a temporary premise inside one of the congregant’s property, a 7m X 4.5m structure often very hot in summer and very cold in winter. By God’s grace we have just acquired an empty stand (65 Kgubetswana) where we can build a more suitable structure. Our intention therefore is to build such structure that will be able to accommodate the church as well as a day care centre/preschool for children.

The structure will be a 15m X 9m with a steel framework covered with wooden boards and roofed with zinc sheets. We have a few zinc sheets that we bought last year that will cover a third of the roof as well as some steel poles.

We are therefore extending an invitation to friends and partners of Bethel Christian Fellowship (and those that desire to be part of what God is doing) to contribute as the Spirit leads to the accomplishment of this vision. You are welcome to pay money directly to our suppliers for easy accountability, or give in kind should you have any of the listed items. Please note that we appreciate even used things such as steel poles, zinc sheets, wood etc.

Yours in Christ

Tawanda Muviyi
084 339 4340
tawandamuviyi@gmail.com

OnwardPosted by Onward Blessing Mvurume

Clarens News: 9th January, 2016

Sterkfontein Dam

Sterkfontein flamingoesSterkfontein Dam. If you’re driving from Clarens to Durban it really is worthwhile taking the R74 past Sterkfontein Dam and over the Oliviershoek pass. The road makes for easy driving, the views are magnificent and you may even see flamingoes on the dam shoreline. If you have the chance drive into the Nature Reserve down to the shore line. The yellowfish are spawning and there’s a good chance that you will see them thrashing about in the water.

Reconciliation Day – Building Bridges

RECONCILIATION DAY, BUILDING BRIDGES

Clarens News's photo.

Having been involved in political activism, social activism and evangelism, I can safely and simply say, “human beings act from preconceived perspectives!” In politics, many party cadres become dogmatic at some point and will not be able to accept any other ideology. In evangelism you also meet people who have beliefs that they are not willing to give up, only because ‘they have been passed to them by the elders’. As we work to develop Clarens greater work needs to be done to develop mental faculties, if not to replace some corrupt files.

We are coming from a point where black and white are not only races, but they are messages written in block letters. Some blacks see a white person as someone who looks down upon the black race. They see an oppressor, an enemy to black development and empowerment. On the other side, some whites see a black person as an incapacitated member of the community, no matter how qualified and experienced they may be. They see a spoilt folk suffering from an entitlement syndrome. If it is in business there is rarely uniformity in what a different race expects to pay or to be paid for services rendered. What is wrong in our society? How can we correct it? How can a fair playground be constructed?

We are striving to distribute news, telling it as it is. Mental structures that need renovation are supplied with the right tools, manpower and materials. Not all work requires the same tool kit and manpower. You cannot use a wheelbarrow to cut a tree branch. I am not going to call everything that barks a dog here; very often we find sheep and cattle grazing together. Weeds also want to grow where good seeds have been sown. Not everything that is done in this community, by different races is wrong. There are men and women who are doing great works across the colour boundaries. I can mention some members of our community without reservations from my short experience in Clarens. People like Ollie, the guy who runs Clarens Xtreme has managed to excel in this vein. Mawela Mashinini who runs Fair Brothers Security among other businesses is also a figure that cannot be ignored. Gareth, the pastor of Dihlabeng Christian Church is another exemplary figure.

With tourists coming to our town daily and major world-class events finding Clarens to be ‘the place’, we have a lot to do as a combined force. Our difference in colour should not be a threat to our coexistence but an opportunity for us to serve our market well. Differences can be positively viewed as diversity, which is a precious component of any ecosystem. Let us not create a dog-eat-dog community. Business competition should be sanitized, merit overpowering colour. No activity or event should go unnoticed. Turning a blind eye to what is happening to our nose will only produce a disjointed, sickly community.

I want to encourage you to keep your eye on our events page and get to know what is happening around you. Normally giant opportunities do not use a speaker to announce themselves. The gold is in the dirt, great deals are hidden in the small font. Clarens is the place, great opportunities are around us. Let us work in unison to produce and offer the best to our clients.

The picture below is an extract from the prayer for Matriculants that was held at NG Kerk on 23 October 2015.

OnwardArticle by Onward Blessing Mvurume

5 Things to do these holidays in Clarens

 

#1/5  Do the Clarens Art RouteIMG_0016

Clarens is well known for its Art and Craft and is often referred to as the Art Mecca of South Africa.  There is a wide selection of art on offer catering to all tastes.   Pick up a copy of the Clarens Art Route map from one of the galleries.   It’s not only a guide to the art galleries – but a wonderful way to explore Clarens.

#2.   Enjoy the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

 

Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Beautiful walks, hiking, mountain biking, swimming.   Maps of the hiking and biking trails are available from most shops in Clarens.   Hiking – and swimming in the dam – is free, but bikers need to have a permit to use the cycling trails.   Permits are available at Clarens Xtreme in Sias Oosthuizen Street.

#3.   Visit The Golden Gate Highlands National Park.  

Golden gate

 

The Golden Gate Highlands National Park is well known for it’s scenic beauty, as well as its wildlife and birds.    Drive the Blesbok and Oribi Loops.    (Maps are available at the Information Centre opposite Glen Reenen Rest Camp.) and be sure to visit the Golden Gate Vulture Hide.  While you’re in the park, visit to the  Basotho Cultural Village – a living museum will give you a unique insight into the ways and lifestyle of traditional Basotho people.

#4.   Eat out.

Clarens has many fine restaurants, delis and coffee shops.    This is however a busy time of the year, so booking is essential.

 

 

The Clarens Clubhouse 3

 

#5.   Take a drive to Fouriesburg.  

 

the-rose-house copy

Enjoy scenic views over the Maluti Mountains.   Look out for Mushroom Rock (at the turn-off to St Fort) and visit the Plaque at Surrender Hill.   Further along the route you may spot Queen Victoria.   (Turn off onto the S505 to Lesoba Guest Farm to get a perfect view of her.)   Be sure to stop at The Rose Hip restaurant at The Rose House to enjoy locally produced red wine, from organically grown grapes grown right here in the Eastern Freestate.   If you want to book for lunch Contact Trish: 072 142 3183.

Nnete Foundation: Multi-Dimentsional Truth Display

NNETE FOUNDATION, Multi-Dimensional Truth Display

“Can I meet you the week after next week?” That is all Gareth Oosthuyzen asked for. It was early May 2015 and I had posted on my Facebook wall that I was going to start teaching Maths in Clarens, and Gareth had read it. About a week and a half later we were seated in my rented room and the term Nnete Foundation was introduced to my ears.
After the greetings and catching up after our first meeting six months earlier, we got to business. We discussed the Mr Onward Maths Academy idea, then the Nnete aspect. By then, Nnete was like a two months old pregnancy, only those very close to the pregnant lady would know. The premise to be used did not look like it could be a hope for many. A shop, it was from afar and from a close range. Reality was just a zygote.

It’s been over seven months now and birth pangs can be felt. The water is about to break. The midwives are attentive.
Nnete Foundation is a Non-Profit Organisation that is being established in Clarens. The place that used to be the Dihlabeng Store is becoming a place of academic upliftment and life skills development. The mandate for this work is to put Clarens on the map academically and knowledgewise. Nnete is a Sesotho term that means truth. From my discussion with Gareth, truth is going to be dished in basins. A world-class set up is on the cards. Grade 8 and Grade 9 learners from schools around Clarens are being targeted. This is not going to be a one-day event or single-year occurrence. Once a learner has been enrolled into the system they will be helped mainly with the English Language and Mathematics until they complete Matric. The idea is to make sure learners from Clarens get Matric passes that can help them study further in areas of choice. In the long run, Nnete Foundation also looks forward to source bursaries for deserving learners to help them further their studies.
Laptops have already been donated and tutor programs obtained and installed. The tutor programs can help individuals struggling with a subject, e.g. Maths, giving video lectures and exercises to tackle. If a learner struggles with an exercise, there is an option to go to a page where the problem is solved, stage by stage.

Some Grade 10 learners from Moriting wa Thuto Secondary School and learners from Clarens Combined School and Ntsu Secondary School benefited from the testing period from 15 October 2015 to 26 November 2015. 18 learners were enrolled for that period. The number is set to be increased to 30 when the Foundation gets fully operational early next year. The Official Opening is then expected to in January 2016 and there will be two staff members fully dedicated to the work.

Besides helping learners from schools the Clarens Community is also set to benefit immensely from life programs that will be run from time to time, free of charge. The only currency requested in return to services rendered is commitment and an eagerness to learn. Volunteers who are experts in their areas of specialisation will come to tutor and mentor. Health related issues, financial management, and other crucial aspects of the livelihood of mankind will be covered. Hanna Banks, originnally from the United Kingdom will be in charge of all the operations from January 2016.

Some signs are already showing that this work is set to impact the educational level in Clarens. Margaret, the principal of Dihlabeng Christian School has seen the need for such a foundation and has inspired the school to donate a sizable amount of money towards the establishment of Nnete. This is an indisputable prophecy of the impact of Nnete on mental faculties.
The work is being established, you can be part of this big dream.

Article and Photos by Onward Blessing Mvurume

Dog walking in Clarens

Many Clarenites enjoy the sense of freedom that comes from being able to walk their dogs practically anywhere and anytime in and around the “Village” of Clarens. This is just one of the many privileges bestowed on residents which, all too often are taken for granted. For the most part, a harmony exists between dog-owners, their dogs, the public and other dogs; there is however an exception to every rule.

A particular point of concern regards the walking of dogs in the Clarens Nature Reserve without a leash. According to the NEMPA Act 57 of 2003, s. 50 (1&2) no domesticated animals may be permitted within a protected area. Due to the proximity of the CNR to the Village and its popularity with locals, the CVC – as designated management authority – agreed to allow dogs in the reserve. Unfortunately of late there have been cases of dogs chasing hares, dassies and Mountain Rhebok and even instances of dogs mock-charging other visitors (and occasionally the rangers) in the reserve. The rangers have even observed dogs out walking alone in the reserve.

Therefore the CVC has no other option than to request that owners utilize a leash in the proximity of other people and dogs, and within 100 metres of the main entrances to the reserve (demarcated by large signboards). This is to protect both residents and tourists using the reserve, as well as wildlife that reside within the reserve, in terms of the Animal Matters Amendment Act no. 42 1993 s.1 (1), which provides for criminal liability. Please note that the CVC does not incur any liability for an incident that happens in the reserve, it is the owner of the animal that is prosecuted.

Please be sure to have a leash on your person when walking your dogs in the CNR and be reminded that the rangers are authorised to request that dog-owners display their leashes at any given time. Furthermore any dogs that are known by their owners to be likely to chase wild animals must have their dogs on a leash at all times. Failure to do so can result in the rangers instructing said owner to leave the reserve immediately, and repeat offenders may be liable to prosecution or their animals being impounded.

The CVC does not wish to police every activity and endeavours to make the time in the CNR a memorable and unique experience for all users in so far as this understanding exists. Keep in mind that a “memorable” user experience entails each user considering the enjoyment and safety of themselves as well as that of other users and have an environmental and safety responsibility from the moment they enter the reserve.

CVC Report-Back November 2015

The CVC Report-Back for November 2015:   Yet another interesting update on everything that’s happening in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve, and the ongoing work done by the CVC Rangers.   (These reports are submitted monthly by Damien Coulson.   To catch up on past monthly reports visit the Clarens Village Conservancy page on this website or visit their own website:  www.clarensvillageconservancy.org.   They also have a facebook page: www.facebook.com/ClarensVillageConservancy.

CVC Report-Back November 2015:
Alien clearing;
Environmental Education;
Our rangers on Patrol;
Donations;
Seasons Greetings.
cvc report 3cvc report 4cvc report 5cvc report 6cvc report 7CVC report 8

 

Click here for more information on the Clarens Village Conservancy

 

 

Iphahamiseng Construction and Multipurpose Cooperative

Raising a self-sustaining community.

Iphahamiseng Construction and Multipurpose Cooperative Iphahamiseng Construction and Multipurpose Cooperative Iphahamiseng Construction and Multipurpose Cooperative
Cooperative 5 Coperative 5 Coperative 6

A community that is self sustaining is well positioned for great development. “Raise yourself ” is the literal translation of the sotho term Iphahamiseng. Registered in 2010, the cooperative has already equipped and transformed lives. An hour with John Mondi, the Coordinator of Iphahamiseng gave birth to this article.

The old adage can be used here with no apologies, ” Give a man a fish and you will have to feed that man the rest of your life. Teach a man to fish and he will feed his own family!” The work that Iphahamiseng has done and continues to do is commendable. This is a for-profit organisation, with the community at heart. The cooperative trains anyone from the community to use their hands to make a living, for free. After gaining skills, any beneficiary can get employment in other companies or organisations that do work related to the skills acquired. The cooperative deals a lot with construction, and has many other facets where anyone and everyone looking for a livelihood can fit.

STEELWORKS

Fencing, buglar bars, security doors and gates, steel frames, artistic flower stands, flamboyant steel frames, …you can name it. Steelworks is like a daily bread to the men and youths at Iphahamiseng. To prove its worth, the cooperative was given a tender to do the steelwork at Clarens Primary School as the school is being taken to another dimension. That is a great achievement for a child born in 2010. All over Clarens and in establishments close to Clarens the cooperative has also been involved in fencing and other construction works.

The cooperative has personnel well trained to do paving works.

AGRICULTURE

Iphahamiseng is not only focused on the male gender. A number of ladies are doing a great work to feed their families and the community with fresh agricultural produce. They are also supplying restaurants in town with fresh vegetables. Amigos restaurant can testify to this.

Using the tunnel that was established by Trans-Caledon Tunnel Authority (TCTA) for the cooperative, different types of greens are being farmed all year round. When I visited the site, next to the Recycling Centre, I saw a good establishment of green beans, spinach, carrots, onions and tomatoes. I am an eyewitness to this, healthy eating is being advocated by this department, under the Iphahamiseng umbrella.

TCTA did not only donate the tunnel, it also helped in the establishment of a chicken project. A fowl run was thus built near the site of the tunnel. The fowl run is however not functional at the moment but plans to bring it into motion are on the cards.

Mamonini Semase is the Supervisor at the Agricultural site.

FREE SKILLS TRAINING
As I mentioned earlier, the cooperative offers skills development courses to the community for free. Anyone from the community can be trained to work with steel. Up to seven people can be trained at any given point, and the training takes four months. After the training, the beneficiary is given a cetificate that shows the skills attained. They can also be helped to look for jobs in other establishments.

The trainees are first taught how to work with meaurements. From there they are exposed to different types of machines, maintainence, safety precautions and how to use them. After showing an understanding of the machines and welding, the trainees are then given tasks to work on. One task after the other is given until one can work on a variety of jobs.

For more information on Iphahamiseng follow them on twitter @iphahamiseng

Onward 2Article by Onward Blessing Mvurume

November, 2015

One Land Love It Expedition

One Land Expedition

South African National Parks(SANParks) Honorary Ranger Mr Wayne Bolton is off to an adventure of  life time . Cycling through all National Parks in the country to raise funds for Rhino Poaching.

The expedition starts on the 28th November 2015 at Pafuri gate and he will do proceed to two national Parks that are in Limpopo Province, namely Mapungubwe National Park &World Heritage Site as well as Marakele National Park.. He will them proceed to Golden Gate Highlands National Park which is in the Eastern Free State …then off to the rest of the national parks with his ultimate destination in February 2016 at Addo Elephant National Park… When he arrives at each  gate, Park Management will meet him and sign a scroll in support of the anti-poaching campaign.

Wayne is scheduled to reach The Golden Gate on 15th December, 2015.   He will be cycling from Bethlehem to Golden Gate, and then on to Ficksburg.

www Wayne Bolton Website http://www.oneland.co.za/
facebook Wayne Bolton  Facebook https://www.facebook.com/www.oneland.co.za
twitter Wayne Bolton Twitter https://twitter.com/onelandloveit
instagram Wayne Bolton Instagram https://instagram.com/onelandloveit/

    – See more at: http://www.awesomesouthafricans.co.za/wayne-bolton/#sthash.2CqIytLM.dpuf

 

Clarens has Talent

CLARENS HAS GOT TALENT!

Working with the youths on almost a daily basis has made me see the eagerness that many youths have to have their talents exposed and appreciated. Clarens is not only the jewel of Freestate when we talk about its blessedness in relief splendour and classy hospitality, a generation of talented youths is also rising. In this wake, Dihlabeng Christian Church Youth Group has organised a platform for ‘Clarenites’ to show their talents.

The Dihlabeng Christian Church Youths will be going for a Camp from 06 January 2016. This type of camp has become an annual happenning. It helps youths to focus on being the best in the year ahead. The more focused youths a commmunity has, the more the potential it has to develop. These camps are normally paid for to attend. For 2016, the organisers are focusing on taking as many youths to the camp as never before. They thus do not want the camp antendees to be burdened by paying exorbitant fees to attend. This has made them to come up with this afundraising Talent-Show. All the funds to be raised on this day will go towards the January 2016 camp.

The Talent-Show will be held onn Wednesday 09 December 2015 at Dihlabeng Christian Church, from 17h00.

I can see two birds being hit by one stone here. First, the Talent-Show is a platform for the exposure of the talents embedded in Clarens. Secondly, the Talent-Show is a fundraising for a Camp that will change the lives of a sizable number of youths in our community. This is not a business, but an input into the development of minds and talents. One man once said,”The future of a forest lies in a seed.”. This is a plaform for the birth of a great forest, a great community.

OnwardArticle by Onward Mvurume

November, 2015

 

Interesting news for Clarens restaurants.

Tunnel WP_20151119_001#1An enterprising man, Teboho, has taken control of one of the tunnels next to the recycling shed. Under Evon’s guidance he has planted Beetroot, carrots, celery, basil, spinach and tomatoes (the tomatoes will be ready in approximately a month.)  Great news for local restaurants who want garden to table vegetables on their menus.

16 Days of Activisim 2015

Kgubetswana Activism Onward Activism 5

Onward Activism 2
Onward Activism 1

Violence should not at any point be tolerated. In all its forms it is an evil beast. Every year the need to concientize communities about the need to stop it continues to escalate. This year the 16 Days of Activism are going to be from the 25th of November to the 10th of December. As a way of campaigning to stop violence against WOMEN and CHILDREN, Phaphama Youth Development is working hand in hand with the Police to organise activities that will take place from the 25th of this month to the 10th of December.

The aim of all the activities is to open the eyes of our generation to fight against all forms of violence. Schools and the general community will get informed from the marches and gatherings that are going to take place. Mojalefa and Leralla schools are also going to be part of these campaigns. There is a great need for the farm communities to get to know their rights and fight against violence and abuse. That has made the organisers see a need to run the campaigns at 2 farms on the 7th and 8th of December.

On 25 November there will be a March as we start these campaigns and on the last day, the 10th of December there will be another march.

The community, all schools, civil society, the business sector and NGOs are being invited to take part in these campaigns.

TOGETHER WE CAN BUILD A PEACEFUL PRODUCTIVE SOUTH AFRICA!!! SAY NO TO WOMEN AND CHILDREN ABUSE!!!

To be part of it join the events as they come. You can also get hold of Mr Onward Blessing Mvurume on 073 054 3145 or Constable Mlangeni on 073 720 8483. A united voice makes more impact. Kgubetswana needs to raise its voice against violence and the time is now!

Onward 2Article by Onward Mvurume

November, 2015

Proposed Development of Dinosaur Interpretation Centre

Dear Clarens,

 

RE: NOTIFICATION OF ENVIRONMENTAL AUTHORISATION: PROPOSED DEVELOPMENT OF A DINOSAUR INTERPRETATION CENTRE WITHIN GOLDEN GATE HIGHLANDS NATIONAL PARK, FREE STATE PROVINCE DEA REFERENCE: 14/12/16/3/3/1/1468

 

On behalf of the Clarens Village Conservation, you are hereby informed that the Department of Environmental Affairs granted environmental authorisation on 26 October 2015 for the above mentioned project, in terms of the National Environmental Management Act, 1998 (Act No.107 of 1998) and the Environmental Impact Assessment Regulations, 2014.

A copy of the Environmental Authorisation (EA) is included in this notification.  A copy of the EA may also be downloaded from the website www.enviroworks.co.za/projectdownloads.php, or alternatively contact Enviroworks.

 

Please see attached letter explaining the Appeals Procedure.

 

We trust you find this in order and thank you for your participation on this project.

Sincerely,

Melisna Grobler

Communications Coordinator

T: 078 486 5729

B.A (Hons) HRM

Dinosaurs put Clarens in the News

Dinosaurs
Dinosaurs (Wits University Website)

The remains of the largest dinosaurs to ever be found on South African soil were revealed at the Wits University Origins Centre on Tuesday.

Dr Jonah Choineire, a senior researcher at the Evolutionary Studies Institute, said the remains of the plant-eating creature were found between the border of Lesotho and South Africa just outside of Clarens.

“For those of you that know T-Rex, it was about 50% heavier than T-Rex,” he said.

The dinosaur, which is yet to be named, was estimated to have weighed about 14 tons.

Over the years, only several parts of the species, which is currently nicknamed the “Highland Giant”, have been found.

To date, the greatest part of the Highland Giant to be discovered was a thigh-bone.

A complete femur of the Highland Giant would measure a metre long.

Choineire said over the years a large ulna, vertebrae and claw pieces belonging to the animal have also been found.

“This is the stuff we haven’t published yet and it will be coming out in a year or two,” he said.

He said the discovery of all the bones was due to the work of hundreds of people, including students.

Coinciding with the Unesco World Science Day for Peace and Development, the Wits Department of Science and Technology also launched an educational poster-artwork by geo-artist Maggie Newsman.

The poster depicted South Africa over 200-million years ago when the continents were splitting apart and early dinosaurs roamed the earth.

Choineire said the poster would show young learners that South Africa was a land which was rich with dinosaurs.

“And we hope that it will get them excited about studying the science behind South Africa’s incredible palaeosciences heritage,” he said.

Source: News24

 

This news, I’m sure, will bring many visitor to Clarens once the Dinosaur Interpretation Centre within Golden Gate Highlands National Park, has been established.    Good news is that the Department of Environmetal Affairs granted environmental authorisation for this project on 26 October, 2015.      (See the notice posted by the Clarens Community Forum)

News from the Recycling Centre

RecyclingClarens can be extremely proud of our Recycling Centre. Not only does the Recycling Centre keep our town clean on a day-to-day basis, but they all stepped up to ensure that the town stayed clean throughout the recent BMW Motorrad weekend. They swept, cleaned toilets, tidied and cleaned the square, stage, showrooms and surrounds, collected 1.5 tonnes of recylable material and even food for the township pigs. What’s more they paid out more than R10,000 in wages to the casual labourers from the township who helped with this huge operation. WOW!!!!

Evon Els (who runs the Recycling Centre under the umbrella of the Clarens Village Conservancy) sent in the following report:

The Recycling Centre was asked by Dr Clean from Johannesburg to do the cleaning for the BMW Motorrad week held in Clarens. We started on Tuesday 3/11/2015 and were the last to leave the square on Wednesday 11/11/2015.

I spread the news that I need people to work as cleaners on the square and they had to come down to the recycling centre to fill in application forms. It was a shock to see how many people are actually looking for work but I could only take on the first ones to apply. (It felt really awful having to turn the others away.)

I had 29 people from our Township working shifts from 08h00 until 17h00 during week days and during the weekend our shifts ran to 23h00. A total amount of R10 305.00 was paid out in wages to the people.

All workers got uniforms and caps from Dr Clean and they looked very professional.

We cleaned 77 drums (and by continually putting clean bags into the drum we could ensure that they never became full); 27 toilets, the beer tent, VIP tent,food preparation tent, tables and chairs, the stage and backstage area, the showroom and entrance, all the exhibitor tents, as well as the square itself, and the surrounding streets. We collected everything – recycling as well as food and rubbish. The food was in separate bags and I dropped it off at the pig owners down at the recycling yard. In total I collected 1.5 tonnes of recycling material. The non recyclable material was almost non existent as all food stalls used recyclable material.

This really was a magnificent effort.   All those who are already members of the Clarens Village Conservancy can give themselves a pat on the back.   Those of you who haven’t signed up as members yet click here for your membership application form.

Click here to learn more about the Clarens Village Conservancy

 

Clarens Water Update

Dear Clarens,

As you all are no doubt aware, the entire country is experiencing a drought. Water shedding and water restrictions are being implemented in many municipalities.

Clarens ordinarily draws its water from the Klein Caledon river, which has now run dry. We do, however, have access to the Katse Dam water tunnels. We have been getting our water from this tunnel for the last six weeks. This is very advantageous to us as a community.

However, please be aware that water is a very scarce resource and whilst we are very fortunate to have access to this water, we need to be water wise to avoid possible restrictions in the future.

We do understand that use of the water from the Katse Dam may attract additional costs, but are unable to quantify this at this time.

Sincerely,

Melisna Grobler

Communications Coordinator

B.A (Hons) HRM

Meteor Showers for November

Meteor Showers for November

November 12 @ 8:00 pmNovember 25 @ 5:00 am

Event Navigation

According to the latest newsletter from Wits Planetarium night sky watchers are in for a treat this month.

Meteor Shower

November is time again for the annual Leonids Meteor Shower. As the name suggests the radian comes from the constellation of Leo the lion. The parent comet for this shower is Comet 55P/Temple-Tuttle, independently discovered by Ernest Temple (Dec 1865) and Horace Tuttle (Jan 1866). Comet Temple-Tuttle orbits the Sun every 33 years with its last appearance in 1998.

The shower runs from about 12 November – 25 November with the peak predicted on the morning of 17 November. We might see about 20 meteors and hour. The best time to view the Leonids is from 3am – 4am, looking in a North Easterly direction.

Moon Phases

Last Quarter: 3 Nov

New Moon: 11 Nov

First Quarter: 19 Nov

Full Moon: 26 Nov

Planets:

Saturn remains to be the only planet visible in the early evening sky in the constellation of the scorpion. In the beginning of the month Saturn sets by 8pm, but by mid-month it will be in the glare on the Sun.

Jupiter, Venus and Mars continue to give us a nice show in the pre-dawn sky.

planet@planetarium.co.za

Two Minutes of Silence

Two minutes silence 

South African Legion 

Did you know that the two minutes silence and its association to Armistice Day (or 11/11) Remembrance has a South African origin?

Read on and learn a little why South Africans should stand proud of what they have given the world – and on Remembrance Sunday and on Armistice day in November – when the western world stands silent in remembrance for two minutes – take heart that this entire ceremony has South African roots.

At 05.30 in the morning of 11 November 1918 the Germans signed the Armistice Agreement in a remote railway siding in the heart of the forest of Compiègne. Soon wires were humming with the message : ‘Hostilities will cease at 11.00 today November 11th. Troops will stand fast on the line reached at that hour…’.Thus, at 11.00 on 11 November 1918 the guns on the Western Front in France and Flanders fell silent after more than four years of continuous warfare, warfare that had witnessed the most horrific casualties. World War One (then known as the Great War) had ended.

The time and date attained an important significance in the post war years and the moment that hostilities ceased became universally associated with the remembrance of those that died in that and subsequent wars and conflicts. The Two Minutes silence to remember all who paid the supreme sacrifice was a result of this expression… and it all began in Cape Town, South Africa.

When the first casualty lists recording the horrific loss of life in the Battles of the Somme were announced in Cape Town, Mr JA Eagar, a Cape Town businessman, suggested that the congregation of the church he attended observe a special silent pause to remember those in the South African casualty list. It was the church also attended by Sir Percy Fitzpatrick. In May 1918, the Mayor of Cape Town, Councillor H Hands (later Sir Harry Hands) at the suggestion made by Mr. RR Brydon, a city councillor, in a letter to the Cape Times initiated a period of silence to remember the events unfolding on the battlefields of Europe and the sacrifices being made there. Mr Brydon’s son, Maj Walter Brydon, three times wounded and once gassed, was killed on 12 April 1918.

The pause would follow the firing of the Noon Gun, the most audible signal with which to co-ordinate the event across the city of Cape Town. The boom of the gun for the midday pause of three minutes for the first time on 14 May 1918 became the signal for all activity in the Mother City to come to a halt. Everything came to a dead stop while everyone bowed their heads in silent prayer for those in the trenches in Flanders.

As soon as the city fell silent, a trumpeter on the balcony of the Fletcher and Cartwright’s Building on the corner of Adderley and Darling Streets sounded the Last Post, the melancholy strains of which reverberated through the city. Reveille was played at the end of the midday pause.

Articles in the newspapers described how trams, taxis and private vehicles stopped, pedestrians came to a halt and most men bared their heads. People stopped what they were doing at their places of work and sat or stood silently. The result of the Mayor’s appeal exceeded all expectations. One journalist described a young woman dressed in black, who came to a halt on the pavement and furtively dabbed at her eyes with a handkerchief. “One could not but wonder what personal interest she had in the act of remembrance”, he wrote.

A few days later Sir Harry, whose son, Capt Richard Hands, a member of ‘Brydon’s Battery’, had been mortally wounded in the same battle in which Maj Brydon had been killed, decided to shorten the duration of the pause to two minutes, “in order to better retain its hold on the people”.

In terms of the meaning of “two minutes” it was also argued that the first minute is for thanksgiving for those that survived and the second is to remember the fallen.

The midday pause continued daily in Cape Town and was last observed on 17 January 1919, but was revived in Cape Town during the Second World War. It had, however, become a pause throughout the British Commonwealth from 11 November 1919.

Sir Percy Fitzpatrick, author of the book Jock of the Bushveld, had been impressed by the period of silence kept in his local church after the horrific loss of life at Delville Wood became known and the casualty lists had been read out. He had a personal interest in the daily remembrance as his son, Maj Nugent Fitzpatrick, battery commander of 71st Siege Battery, was killed on 14 December 1917 by a chance shell fired at long range. Sir Percy was understandably deeply affected by the loss of his favourite son and was also so moved by the dignity and effectiveness of the two minute pause in Cape Town that the date and time of the Armistice inspired him to an annual commemoration on an Imperial basis.

Sir Fitzpatrick then wrote to King George and it was accepted and implemented by Royal decree. On 27 October 1919, a suggestion from Fitzpatrick for a moment of silence to be observed annually on 11 November, in honour of the dead of World War I, was forwarded to George V, then King of the United Kingdom, who on 7 November 1919, proclaimed “that at the hour when the Armistice came into force, the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, there may be for the brief space of two minutes a complete suspension of all our normal activities … so that in perfect stillness, the thoughts of everyone may be concentrated on reverent remembrance of the glorious dead.” 11 November was the date in 1918 that the formal end of combat occurred to end WWI. Fitzpatrick was thanked for his suggestion of the two minute silence by Lord Stamfordham, the King’s Private Secretary who wrote:

Dear Sir Percy,
The King, who learns that you are shortly to leave for South Africa, desires me to assure you that he ever gratefully remembers that the idea of the Two Minute Pause on Armistice Day was due to your initiation, a suggestion readily adopted and carried out with heartfelt sympathy throughout the Empire.
Signed Stamfordham

Story for the South African Legion by Peter Dickens

 

Newsletter: 11 November 2015

As you can see The Clarens News has a new look.   The idea is that we’ll be able to post updated news as and when we get it.   I know that many of you love the emailed newsletters – but – unfortunately they are not only extremely time-consuming to put together and post out, but very often they are out-of-date within hours of going out.  Clarens is, after all, a busy town, and there’s always something interesting happening.   It is hoped that most of you are now following us on facebook.   Our facebook page is updated regularly, and we are slowly managing to build an awesome team of Clarenites who regularly post on our behalf.   Naturally, there must be times when you also want to say something, in which case join the Clarens News Group on facebook.   Here, everyone is welcome to have their say, provided of course that we all stay civilized and friendly.   (No politics, personal wars, foul language etc. etc. etc., … I’m sure you get the drift.)

Clarens News is first and foremost about Clarens and everyone who lives here.   We will soon be launching another website which is directed more toward people who want to visit Clarens.   We are looking forward to introducing the new website soon.  It’s in it’s final design stages and our website designers are hoping that we will be able to go live before the end of the year.

Reminder from Clarens Tourism Forum

Dear Clarens,

On behalf of the Clarens Tourism Forum, we would like to send out a friendly reminder to all.

The attached visitor map and registration forms include all the  2016 membership benefits, kindly submit your applications.

Sincerely,

Melisna Grobler

Communications Coordinator

B.A (Hons) HRM

Click here for visitor map

Click here for Membership form

Click here for more information on The Clarens Tourism Forum

Opuntia ficus-indica

Opunta ficus-indica
Opunta ficus-indica Opunta ficus-indica

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts.  This week we’ll be looking at an alien member of the Cactaceae (Cactus family): Opuntia ficus-indica.

Opuntia ficus-indica (Sweet Prickly-pear in English, Truksvye in Afrikaans, Terofeiye in Sesotho) is an invasive weed (Category 1) that obtains a height of around 5m as a shrub and occurs throughout much of South Africa. It was originally introduced from Mexico to act as natural hedges in biological cattle kraals. The fruit of which is also a tasty treat – especially when eaten cold – beware those fine hairs though which itch like mad when they get into your skin.

The flower pictured here was photographed opposite the old Post Office. As a Category 1 weed its control, removal or destruction if possible is mandatory. No trade or planting of prickly pear is allowed, with the exception of the fruit if used for non-commercial human consumption.

The leaves are large; succulent; broadly obovate and flat, the stems woody. The stems are sub-divided into flattened, narrow, elliptical segments that are green but covered with a waxy layer. Small bristles protrude from the leaves in clusters. The fruit are roughly egg shaped, and like the leaves – are covered in clusters of fine bristles. Flowers are yellow-orange and measure around 50mm across. Flowering October – December. Uses:

Commercial products

Extracts of O. ficus-indica have been used in jellies, candies, teas, and alcoholic drinks.

Medicinal

This invasive has been used in the treatment of type 2 diabetes, inflammation, ulcers and the treatment of first degree burns.

Ecology

Invasive weed. Removal is mandatory if at all possible. The fruit is a favourite of birds, mammals and humans. Pollinated by bees and butterflies.

Conservation Status

Naturalised invasives are not defined under the SANBI National Red List categories.

Click here for more information on plants in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Click here for more information on the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

 

Municipal billing glitches

Dear Members,

The Clarens Ratepayer Association is aware of the current municipal billing glitches. If you are experiencing the same issue, kindly forward your name & Dihlabeng account number to us for investigation.

Sincerely,

Melisna Grobler

Communications Coordinator

B.A (Hons) HRM

The Twitcher returns

THE TWITCHER RETURNS, AS THE ACTRESS SAID TO THE BISHOP…………..

Nothing is more calculated to drag the Twitcher out of retirement and away from Robert’s book of dead birds than German engineering at its most advanced. And I’m not talking here about the Mark 46 Panzer Tank (did I promise we wouldn’t mention the war?) but rather the elegance of two wheels travelling at 340km per hour between Clarens and Fouriesburg in rush-hour traffic.

As the actress said to the Bishop, nothing heats my seat like 1200 cubic centimetres throbbing between my legs. Speaking personally I rather like a 46 F-cup in slinky leather, but that’s just me. Point is that the golden-fingered engineers of Germany’s Federal Republic have contributed the raw material for a festival of note on the greening square of Clarens. Yes, the BMW Motorrad has arrived and overwhelmed us with showmanship, professionalism and shiny objects that travel at something approaching the speed of sound.

I find it hard to believe that simple human beings, even Bavarians, can twist metal into shapes that defy gravity and spray-paint them in such delicious colours. That might be the cocktails talking but never have motorbikes been so much fun, or looked so good (sorry Harley).

There is no way of calculating the fiscal benefits of the BMW event to Clarens but it is reasonable to suppose that the two or three thousand bikers here this weekend will return with family and friends in the next 6 months. And as the actress (also) said to the Bishop, it’s not the instant gratification that counts but the long-term satisfaction. Put that equation on top of steady growth in the town’s business fortunes and you have what one might call a no-brainer. There will of course be some villagers who resent the noise and the disturbance of their autumn years, but they are not likely to be dependent on the town’s business for their income. By contrast, guest houses, shops, restaurants and pubs might have a more benevolent view as the wider economy (and rugby fortunes) of SA goes south.

With hindsight wisdom, some locals might even admit to doubting the success and knock-on effects of the annual Beer Festival, now 5 years old and still going like a train. There is not a business in Clarens that has not benefited incalculably from this beer festival and the same, for better or worse, is likely to be said for the BMW Motorrad. Assuming it survives the Mother Grundy’s and becomes an annual event of course. And assuming BMW replants the square with lush green grass and puts the baby birds back into their nests.

Like most innovative events, the Motorrad will have its champions and detractors. Speaking personally, I haven’t had so much fun since I stalked Bigfoot on the mountains or crossed ducks with Guinea fowl to improve the flavour of my lonely stew. I have sympathy with villagers whose insomnia has suffered at the hands (guitars?) of young men in cotton vests or stunt riders whose tyre tracks have carved their way into our hearts and roads. But spare a thought for the traders of the town whose fortunes may yet hang by a thread if we don’t sustain our growth.

If all else fails, Hobhouse beckons those who feel overwhelmed by this intrusion. Just think, you could sell your house in Clarens and buy eight houses, a deceased hotel and a railway station with the proceeds, in that gentle town. And if you do decide to colonise the little town to the south, it is extremely unlikely that breweries or BMWs will come calling to spoil what remains of your visit to this planet.

The Twitcher

Clarens Combined School – Awareness

Great work being done by the Police, Phaphama Youth Development Child and Youth Care workers and Tsepong Care workers. From Wednesday the 4th of November 2015 to Friday the 6th, Constable Mlangeni from Clarens Police Station worked hand in glove with Pinkie Mashinini, Mamoqebelo Mokoena, Ntaoleng Motloung, Neo Motsoeneng Rosa, Emily Nkosinkulu, Thabiso Mokebe, Mphikeleli Ncala, Tona, Sibongile Matches, Ouma, and Nometi to raise awareness at Clarens Combined School. They worked with Grade 5 to Grade 9 classes. Topics covered include: Teenage Pregnancy, Drug Abuse, Human Rights and Sexual Offense and Bullying. Here is their work in pictures.

Onward Onward 2  2
Onward 3tiff Onward 5

 

 

 

Onward 2Posted to Clarens News facebook page 6.11.2015

by Onward Blessing Mvurume

 

BMW Motorrad Days Programme of Events

BMW MOTORRAD DAYS PROGRAMME OF EVENTS

 FRIDAY.
TIME ACTIVITY LOCATION
08:00 – 17:00  Test rides and Enduro Park open Daily
10:00 – 22:00  All exhibition areas and tents open Main Square
10:00  Main Square opens to public Main Square
MC Welcome Main Stage
10:00 – 11:00  Bon Tempo DJ set 1
11:00 – 11:30  Stunt Show with Mattie Griffin 1
11:30 – 11:45  MC – Brand ambassadors
12:00 – 14:00  Bon Tempo DJ set 2
14:00 – 14:30  Stunt Show with Mattie Griffin 2
14:30 – 16:00  Bon Tempo DJ set 3
16:00 – 16:30  Stunt Show with Mattie Griffin 3
16:30 – 19:00  Bon Tempo DJ set / Local Band 4
19:00 – 20:00  CrashCarBurn Main Tent
20:00 – 20:30  Welcome by BMW Team and lottery Main Tent
20:30 – 21:30  Die Heuwels Fantasties Main Tent
22:00  Main Stage closes
23:00  Black Label Beer Garden closes
24:00  Main Square closed to public
21:30 – 02:00 Nightclub (Enduro Area)

 

 

SATURDAY.
TIME ACTIVITY LOCATION
08:00 – 17:00  Test rides and Enduro Park open Daily
10:00 – late All exhibition areas open Main Square
10:00 – 11:00  MC Welcome
Talk – Brand Ambassadors TBC
11:00 – 11:30  Stunt Show with Mattie Griffin 1
11:30 – 12:30  Bon Tempo DJ set 1
12:30 – 13:00  Talk – Brand Ambassadors TBC
13:15 – 14:00  Mean Mr Mustard Main Stage
14:00 – 14:30  Stunt Show with Mattie Griffin 2
14:30 – 16:00  Bon Tempo DJ set 2
16:00 – 16:30  Stunt Show with Mattie Griffin 3
16:30 – 18:30  Bon Tempo DJ set 3
18:30 – 19:15  Mean Mr Mustard Main Stage
19:15 – 20:30  Welcome by BMW Team – Lottery prize draw Main Stage
20:30 – 21:30  Ard Matthews from Just Jinjer Main Stage
22:00  Main Stage closes
23:00  Black Label Beer Garden closes
21:30 – 02:00 Nightclub Ignition Club

 

 

SUNDAY.
TIME ACTIVITY LOCATION
08:00 – 14:30  Test rides and Enduro Park open Venue TBC
Bikers Church Service – Pastor Rene
08:00 – 17:00  Enduro Park opens Enduro Park
10:00 – 17:00  All exhibition areas open Main Square
10:00 – 10:30  Stunt Show with Mattie Griffin
10:30 – 12:00  Bon Tempo DJ set 1
12:00 – 12:30  Stunt Show with Mattie Griffin 1
Talk – Brand Ambassadors
12:30 – 14:00  Bon Tempo DJ set – Local Band Rooi Baart 2
14:00 – 14:30  Stunt Show with Mattie Griffin
15:00  Main Square closed
MC – Event close
15:00 – 17:00 Vendors to pack up

 

 

 

BMW Motorad – update

The BMW Motorad weekend is upon us and already the village is a hive of activity. Following the public meetings to inform Clarenites of the event, some changes to the plan have been made.

1) Activities will be centred along the Square and Clarens Xtreme only. Whilst the concept of a village wide event, particularly along Roos & Van der Merwe streets, is something the organisers are aiming at, they’ve put that particular concept on ice for 2015.

2) The appeal to consider the quality of the stadium grass for events planned for the stadium in the immediate future was also heard and there will be no camping at the stadium (or any other facility for that matter).

3) The road closure indicated on the plan for the Western side of the Square had been cancelled; traffic will be allowed through but no parking will be allowed. The Eastern side of the Square will be closed off for vehicles with pedestrian access only. The Dihlabeng traffic department will be in attendance to direct traffic around the Western side of the Square

Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween. There’s so much happening in Clarens that you’d better dust off those broomsticks – it’s going to be the only way to do it all. Have a look at the events page on our website: www.clarensnews.co.za .
Today: The Clarens Country Market
Cherry Farm Tours
Halloween party at Friends
5th November: Guy Fawkes Trivia evening
5th November: CAT at a hot BMW Motorrad evening
6-8 November: BMW Motorad
7 November: The Clarens Country Market
14 November: Cherry Jazz Festival (Ficksburg)
14-21 November: Cherry Festival (Ficksburg)
19 November: Sandstone Estates Tours and Train rides

Snow report: 1-3 November, 2015

It seems the cold front arriving early next week may bring just a little more snow with it than we first expected. The forecasts do seem to be fluctuating somewhat – however this is the latest, most accurate info we have. Late Sunday evening into the early hours of Monday morning we may see snow over the high mountain peaks surrounding Graaff Reniet. Continuing into the morning snow will reach the mountain regions of Oudtshoorn, Beaufort West, Hogsback and the Drakensberg all the way from The Eastern Cape into the KZN with heavier falls in the mountains bordering the Eastern Cape near Tiffendel and Lesotho. Regions in the Eastern Cape such as Lady Grey and Barkly East may also experience some snow in the high mountains.   (Information courtesy of snowreport.co.za)

Showville – Talent competition

MEDIA RELEASE

17 September 2015

 

Fouriesburg is playing host to SABC 2’s brand new Variety Talent Show : Showville.

Everybody dreams of becoming a star and basking in their fifteen minutes of fame. Every town has a story and every town has a star. Showville is coming to town to make dreams come true.

SHOWVILLE is South Africa’s small-town variety talent competition where two iconic hosts visit a different town each week selecting four finalists whose unique performances are put to a town vote to decide who walks away with R10, 000 cash and the glory of newfound fame. People living within a 50km radius of the venue are allowed to enter the competition.

Hosting the series are two award winning performers: TV star, comedian and record-breaking winner of South Africa’s “Strictly Come Dancing” Series, Rob van Vuuren; along with dancer, choreographer, and star in local dance movie “Hear Me Move”, Bontle Modiselle. They will be spending time with each town’s short listed four finalists, mentoring and coaching them, in preparation for the big show-off talent evening.

The production will take place from Monday, 28 September to Wednesday, 30 September, with most of it being filled and playing out at the Fouriesburg Town Hall.

Day One, sees Rob and Bontle host open auditions at the Town Hall. Any and every type of performer is welcome to show their stuff and tell their story. At the end of the day, the hosts will select the four acts they feel will put on the best show for the town. These are The Finalists.

On Day Two – the Coaches mentor each finalist in preparation for the big ‘show-off’ talent evening. Filming of the finalists takes place as part of the everyday, normal lives of our finalists as they juggle to rehearse, go to work, spend time with their family and most likely, get all wound up and excited for their moment of fame. The audience will have to collect tickets to watch the Grand Finale from the Town Hall from lunch time onwards on a first-come-first-serve basis.

Day Three is the grand finale, presented at Fouriesburg Town Hall on Wednesday 30 September at 17h30, where, in front of an audience of friends, family and local community, our top four perform their acts and get voted for by their peers as the best Showvile Act of the night. The winner is awarded R10,000 and a glittering trophy signifying that they are their town’s favourite act and Showville’s Town Victor! The audience must please take note: no ticket, no entry.

The Series will be screened on SABC2 each Saturday at 20h00 from 7 November 2015.

To find out if Showville is coming to your town, please visit www.Showville.co.za

Showville is being produced as a co-production between two of Cape Town’s top TV production companies, Okuhle Media and Cooked in Africa Films.

This first series – comprising 26 one hour episodes – will see the Showville crew visiting towns in the Western Cape, Free State and Kwa-Zulu Natal. “We felt it was time to visit places that rarely receive public exposure” commented Greenland.   “The Show is intended to roll out as a nationwide talent search with the hope that our second Series for 2016 will see us travelling to Gauteng and up North.”

Cooked In Africa was Founded in 2003 and is owned and run by South African filmmakers, passionate foodie and local author, Justin Bonello and Peter Gird. Cooked in Africa Films has produced over 21 television series and delivered more than 150 hours of programming across various genres to broadcasters globally. Situated in Cape Town, South Africa, Cooked in Africa Films supports a vertical model, maintaining world class standards and ensuring a consistent and seamless delivery of content to broadcasters and clients. Cooked in Africa are well known for their shows “Ultimate Braai Master” and “Charlies Cake Angels”, their most recent venture besides Showville is the well known international format, “Undercover Boss”, all bearing testament to the company’s longevity and unrivalled ability to produce high quality and original content.

OKUHLE MEDIA is a female-owned, BEE Level 2 compliant production company, their flagship shows are Hectic Nine-9, SABC2’s daily, live youth block since 2007 and the cooking lifestyle shows, Neill Anthony, Private Chef and Sarah Graham Cooks Cape Town. Established in 2003, Okuhle Media has consistently delivered excellent production, marketing and broadcasting services resulting in local and international awards. Amongst these are the Imbongi Award for best production company in the Western Cape, the Premiers Entrepreneurship award in 2014 and a number of SAFTA awards for local and international television shows, since their inception 12 years ago.

 

…ends/

 

 

Compiled by Okuhle Media

 

For further information please contact:

 

Minke Alves – 021 486 2900 or 083 254 2063

 

24 September, 2015: Heritage Day

Heritage Day
Our Art Heritage Under Threat
Important Meeting
News from CVC and CRA
CLUNY NEWS
Equinox:
Clarens Garden Club:
Friends reopens:
More restaurant news:
Maluti Radio – Listen Live
GOLD IS THE NEW PINK
Classifieds
Contact us


IMG_0004

Heritage Day

We at Clarens News would like to wish all our readers a wonderful Heritage Day.   And it was with great pleasure that we managed to get this photograph of Clarens resident, Gladys, wearing this very special outfit to celebrate her heritage.


Our Art Heritage Under Threat

It’s rather ironic that proposed new legislation regarding copyright on all art in South Africa should come to our notice on Heritage Day.
News Release ( Adv. Anton Alberts)
The new Copyright Bill holds ominous consequences for all artists in South Africa and comes down to a song such as Steve Hofmeyr’s “Pampoen” will one day automatically belong to the state if the singer is no longer alive, Adv. Anton Alberts, the parliamentary spokesperson on trade and industry says. The sinister Bill was quietly published in last month’s Government Gazette. It contains various worrying aspects, of which the most important is that inheritance of copyright goes to the state. Adv. Alberts says this affects all artists such as writers, film makers, photographers, sculptors, painters, musicians etc. According to media reports today, the Bill of the department of trade and industry stipulates that ownership of all copy right after a person’s death will automatically and permanently be transferred to the state. As far as it is known there is no such rule in any country in the world. The Bill furthermore determines that the state cannot in any way give up this ownership by, for example, selling it. It is the state’s exclusive property to do with it in accordance with its own discretion. Another stipulation of the Bill is that it makes provision for an Intellectual Property Tribunal with wide-ranging powers and the establishment of a required minimum for locally produced content for the broadcasting industry. This content for public broadcasters is set at 80% while it is 60% for private broadcasters, with heavy punishment for institutions who do not adhere to it. If it realises, viewers could prepare themselves for a myriad of repeats – much more than what the case is at present. Adv. Alberts says the Bill is one of a long list of bills with a communist slant which is aimed at gaining control over everything possible to the detriment of citizens. “The FF Plus will oppose it in the parliamentary portfolio committee for trade and industry on which I serve. “We invite all artists to register their opposition by sending an e-mail to; help@vfplus.org.za with the title “Copyright” and the person’s name, surname, contact details, e-mail address and the nature of his/her industry in order that an organised campaign opposing this Bill could be launched,” Adv. Alberts said.


Important Meeting

Please see attached notice of an information session 28 September at 4pm at the Protea Hotel. The same session will be repeated on 30 September for your convenience, please choose whichever suits you best.
Come and enjoy a drink and a snack, and please spread the word. This notice will be distributed to all members under the various forums/associations in Clarens, the purpose being to reach the entire community


News from CVC and CRA

The newly formed  CRA (Clarens Ratepayers Association) management committee is:

 Chairman – Sjoerd de Boer  +27 83 646-3321 +27 58 256-1708   – deboeratlast@absamail.co.za

Chris green

Debra Stewart

Francois Schoeman

Martin Ball

Natalie Dell

Richard Beeming

Please note that all future communication regarding CRA should kindly be directed Sjoerd until further notice.

The CVC management committee has elected the office bearers for the next year as follows:

 Chairman – Santi Meintjes +27 82 925-4203 santi.mentjes@worldonline.co.za

Vice-chairman – Sherri Gersh

Secretary – Engela Wessels

Treasurer – professional to be appointed


CLUNY NEWS

Each calendar is for sale at R120.  The outlets in Clarens are Horeb Winkel and Old Stone Bottle Store, as well as at the Clarens Vet Surgery.  There are several outlets in Fouriesburg and at the Fouriesburg Vet Surgery.

The photos are taken by various photographers including Amanda van Blerk.  Lucinda Hooley contributed quotes and Amanda van Blerk arranged the printing of the calendar.

We’re also looking forward to the Cooking for Cluny event next month.   (10th October, 2015.)   And with this thought in mind, we’ve found a great video for you to watch:   Really good for a laugh!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vhg7Xm4FXAY


Equinox

Yesterday (September 23) was equinox:

The September equinox occurs the moment the Sun crosses the celestial equator – the imaginary line in the sky above the Earth’s Equator – from north to south. This happens either on September 22, 23, or 24 every year.


 

Clarens Garden Club

CLARENS GARDEN CLUB – NOTICE OF MEETING
Due to the fact that the speaker can’t come to Clarens on 23rd September, the Garden Club meeting has been moved to Wednesday the 30th and will take place at the home of Nellie Hugo. The speakers, Leon and Elise Scholtz, from the Bristle Cone Nursery in Mpumalanga will be talking about general garden matters and they will also bring some plants to sell. The catering team will be Judy Roos, Jenny Pringle and Michelle Coleman.Please remember to bring a chair and a plant to sell.

Directions: Go up Main Road past the Dutch Reformed Church and turn right into van Reenen Street which becomes le Roux Street. Go past the castle and up to The Ridge development. Drive on the tarred road taking the second turning left and you will arrive at Nellie’s home which is the first house on the left next door to the only house with a red roof. The name of the house is “Rus in Urbe”.Hoping to see you all there.


Friends reopens:

Friends are back at last.   Their kitchen it not quite ready yet, but the garden and pub are open.
HIS WEEKEND:   SLIPSTREAM will be playing on Friday and Saturday nights.


 

More restaurant news:  

LIVE MUSIC AT AMIGOS

Thursday Night     17H00 – 22H00                               Tian

Friday afternoon      14H00 – 17H00                           Deon

Friday night from         17H00 to 22H00                     Simon

Saturday Afternoon   14H00 – 17H00                       Simon

Saturday Night –        17H00 to 22H00                       Tian

 World Cup Live Rugby over five TV

Food and drink specials available

 


 

Maluti Radio – Listen Live

maluti radio

Click onto http://www.radiomaluti.co.za/gallery.html 

To see the program schedule click here 


GOLD IS THE NEW PINKFight Like a Kid

September is Childhood Cancer Awareness month – one of the Helping SA initiatives.   They have two areas of focus: Helping SA’s cancer awareness campaign and Helping SA’s Children in Need.

Click here to find out more – and to make a donation.

 

Classifieds

Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website:  especiall y if you’re looking for an employment opportunity :   Clarens Brewery is looking for awesome people to join their energetic team. If you’re personable, chatty, human-and-dog loving, check out the vacancies on the website www.clarensbrewery.co.za

Browse around – you’re bound to find something of interest.


Contact us

email:  editor@clarensnews.co.za

 

 

CRA and CVC Committee members

Clarens Ratepayers Association

Chairman – Sjoerd de Boer  +27 83 646-3321 +27 58 256-1708   – deboeratlast@absamail.co.za

Chris green

Debra Stewart

Francois Schoeman

Martin Ball

Natalie Dell

Richard Beeming

 

Please note that all future communication regarding CRA should kindly be directed Sjoerd until further notice.

 

 

The CVC management committee has elected the office bearers for the next year as follows:

 

Chairman – Santi Meintjes +27 82 925-4203 santi.mentjes@worldonline.co.za

Vice-chairman – Sherri Gersh

Secretary – Engela Wessels

Treasurer – professional to be appointed

 

Berkheya cerciifolia

Berkhaya cercifoliaGreetings to all our enthusiastic and botanically minded villagers! This week’s PoI focuses on a herb from the Asteraceae (Daizy) family – now also known as the Compositae family.

Enter Berkheya – a genus which makes its first-time appearance in a biweekly PoI article. Berkheya cerciifolia (White Thistle-leaved Berkheya in English, Wildedissel in Afrikaans and mohata-o-mosoeu in Sesotho), is a perennial herb that often obtains a height of over 1.5m, especially in its preferred habitat atop moist grassland slopes and in close proximity to high-altitude streams. This species makes itself at home in high altitude (1800-3000m A.S.L.) areas in the Eastern Mountain Region (EMR) of the Drakensburg, where it is locally endemic.

This lone specimen was observed in close proximity to a waterfall that intersects our newly built Caracal Contour Cycle trail. It may not be graceful but it certainly won’t be messed with and its spiny growth form is certainly worthy of our interest.

The leaves of B. cerciifolia are of 2 forms: basal – measuring up to 300X80mm, white-felted beneath with deeply lobed and sharply toothed margins; and upper leaves which are directly attached to the stem, broad nearest the stem, and resembling spiny bat-wings. The stem by contrast, is slightly silky – yet firm – to the touch. The flowerheads are comparatively large, measuring up to 80mm across. The sterile ray florets are usually white but may be a light yellow; whereas the disk florets are always yellow. The bracts surrounding the flowerhead resemble small leaves, measuring 10mm wide, and complete with spines of half – equal length. Flowering occurs from Jan – March, so you’ve (regrettably) got a little waiting to do. Uses:

Medicinal

Many species of the genus Berkheya are known to have medicinal properties; although very little research has been done on B. cerciifolia in particular.

Ecology

This species is both a pioneer of recently disturbed veld (secondary succession), and serves to stabilise the soil structure of newly colonised areas (primary succession), thus facilitating an eventual progression to the next ecological stage in succession.

Conservation Status

cerciifolia is listed as of Least Concern according to the SANBI database.

Click here for more information on plants in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Click here for more information on the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

 


28 August, 2015: Spring

In this Issue

Spring
Gateway Show
Community News from Clarens Chamber of Commerce
Dinosaur Interpretation Centre
Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve
CVC, CFA, CRA AGM Feedback
COMPASS – Responding to a Need
Dihlabeng Christian School update
Maluti Radio – Listen Live
EVENTS:
Classifieds
Contact us


Apple IMG_0989Spring

Spring is here, and nature appears to add more decorative blossoms and shades of green to the Clarens landscape every day.   Accuweather forecasts plenty of sunshine for the week ahead – with perhaps a shower on Tuesday.   It’s tempting to pack away all those winter duvets, but, long-time Clarens residents warn that we usually have a cold snap sometime in September.   Of course, spring is traditionally a time to spring clean – and also to start thinking about your diet and all those lovely spring salad vegetables……but as always, there’s always a downside to everything.   Someone recently sent me an article on how useless lettuce is from a nutritional point of view.   Click here if you really, really, want to read it…..or if you’re looking for an excuse to just bring out the braai and forget about the salad.


Gateway Show

Thanks to hard working members of the Clarens Tourism Forum, Clarens is THERE.


Community News from Clarens Chamber of Commerce

Update on the Postbox situation

Carl Swerts got the following information from the branch manager of SAPO Bethlehem. SAPO will send a vehicle from Bethlehem every day with mail which will be either placed in the boxes, or delivered to a street address by their employees.
Bruce Marx has agreed that the post boxes will remain where they are until 30 November where after they will be moved to another site and serviced in the same manner. (It’s not Bruce’s responsibility to move them, it’s SAPO’s). The exact site is unknown at this stage. This vehicle travelling daily is a temporary measure; SAPO is planning to operate via  a Regional Post Office Agency which a privately owned business fulfilling certain functions for SAPO. Anyone interested in this business opportunity should contact the Chamber of Commercia via clarenschamber@gmail.com for details.


Dinosaur Interpretation Centre

Proposed development of a Dinosaur Interpretation Centre on the Remaining Extent and Portion 1 of the Farm Glen Reenen No. 1361 within Golden Gate Highlands National Park, Bethlehem, Free State Province.
Notice is hereby given, in terms of the National Environmental Management Act, 1998 (Act No. 107 of 1998) (NEMA) EIA Regulations of 2014, that SANParks (the
Proponent) is proposing the above mentioned Project. The intended development shall trigger the following listed activities: Activity 12 of Government Notice No. R983 of 4 December 2014 (Listing Notice 1) and Activity 14 of Government Notice No. R985 of 4 December 2014 (Listing Notice 3). A Basic Assessment process is being undertaken for the above project. The date of placement of this notice is 5 September 2015. Queries regarding this matter must be referred to: The Environmental Consultant, Enviroworks, Suite 116, Private Bag X01, Brandhof, 9324 or contact Adél Groenewald  at Tel: 051 436 0793, Fax: 086 601 7507 or Email: adel@enviroworks.co.za.
5. Parties wishing to formally register as an I&AP are requested to forward their comments (and contact details) to Enviroworks within 30 days of placement of this advertisement, which is on orbefore 5 October 2015.


Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Article and photography by  Damien Coulson
Head ranger:  Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’ll be looking at a member of a rather large family, the Leguminosae (Legume or Pea family).
Tephrosia diffusa (Creeping Tephrosia in English, Visboointjie in Afrikaans) is a herbaceous perennial which, as its common name suggests, is a creeping wildflower. It tends to form relatively thick carpets in grassveld, usually in close proximity to water and rocky outcrops. T. diffusa is distributed from the Eastern Cape right through to KZN at altitudes of up to 1950 m A.S.L.    Read more

 

 


CVC, CFA, CRA AGM Feedback

The CVC,CFA, CRA AGM was held on Wednesday 19 August 2015 and about 40 people attended. New volunteers were announced for the CRA committee and their names will be announced by the CRA in due course. Rodney Wainwright gave feedback on the activities and achievements of the CVC over the past year, and is now stepping down as chairman of the CVC. The new commitee, as approved by the AGM, consists of Sjoerd de Boer, Lothar Vogl, Francois Schoeman, Niki Roy, Sherri Gersh, Santi Meintjes and Engela Wessels. The four rangers and Evon Els (recycling) are not officially committee members but do attend and report back at committee meetings. The office bearers will, by request of the AGM, be elected by the committee themselves, and will be announced as soos as done. Rodney also gave an overview about the activies of the CFA, and shared some challenges that are facing them in the year ahead. The AGM approved a change in  membership fees (combined for the 3 organisations) from 1 January 2016: R1000.00 per year if you pay in a lump sum, R100.00 per month if you pay by monthly stop order or monthly EFT (membership is per household, not per person). Pensioners are welcome to approach the committee for negotiations about reduced fees, but there is no general reduction applicable. Please support these three organisations so that Clarens remains the leisure destination of choice in the eastern Free State.


COMPASS – Responding to a Need

Onward Mvarume is an inspiration to us all.   In response to seeing the great need amongst the young people in our community he has organised a career exhibition which is to be held at the Clarens Combined School on 4th September.

After working as a volunteer teacher at Clarens Combined School from February 2015 to May 2015, I have seen the need for learners to be guided career wise. The majority of learners have no idea of the relationship between what they are learning and the careers they may want to pursue. Of those that seem to be serious with their studies, quite many of them have not decided on what they will pursue, in relation to their gifts and inner interests.

Another challenge that I have discovered is that the young people around Clarens lack exposure since Clarens is a small-rural-tourist-resort-town. Many are growing up with no ambition at all, and of those who are sometimes ambitious many are discouraged by grown-ups who have not seen anything better.

We have thus created S.H.A.P.E. to Share information, Help dreamers, Administer projects, Pioneer ventures, and Equip this generation and generation-next to benefit humanity.   Onward Mvarume.
Click here  to see the Program and list of exhibitors


Dihlabeng Christian School update

We are happy to inform our readers that Dihlabeng Christian School have managed to find someone for the post we advertised in our last newsletter.   They’ve also sent us their latest informative and interesting newsletter.
Click here to read it.
You can also find out more about the school by visiting their page on the Clarens News website.


Maluti Radio – Listen Live

Click onto http://www.radiomaluti.co.za/gallery.html

To see the program schedule click here 


EVENTS:

Click  onto the links to learn more.
For more upcoming events visit the Clarens News website:   www.clarensnews.co.za

29 August, 2015
Clarens Country Market
10am onwards.
The CVC rangers will be on hand to sell CVC maps.   If you haven’t got yours already, this would be a good time to show your support.
28-30 August 2015
Getaway Show
Clarens is being ably represented by members of the CTF this weekend.
31 August 2015
Spring Dressup Party 
31 August, 2015
Klopse
Klopse will be welcoming Debra Stewart for an enlightening talk: Hours in a Bookshop. She will be touching on a little bit of history/philosophy – all stemming from her experience of selling books at the Bibliophile – a very special bookshop.
6 September, 2015
MacNollie – hosted by SPF

 


 

Classifieds

Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website:  especiall y if you’re looking for an employment opportunity :   Clarens Brewery is looking for awesome people to join their energetic team. If you’re personable, chatty, human-and-dog loving, check out the vacancies on the website www.clarensbrewery.co.za

Browse around – you’re bound to find something of interest.


 

Contact us

email:  editor@clarensnews.co.za

 

Tephrosia diffusa

Tilandsia
Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’ll be looking at a member of a rather large family, the Leguminosae (Legume or Pea family).

Tephrosia diffusa (Creeping Tephrosia in English, Visboointjie in Afrikaans) is a herbaceous perennial which, as its common name suggests, is a creeping wildflower. It tends to form relatively thick carpets in grassveld, usually in close proximity to water and rocky outcrops. T. diffusa is distributed from the Eastern Cape right through to KZN at altitudes of up to 1950 m A.S.L.
The genus name Tephrosia is derived from the Greek tephros (Ashen), most likely in reference to the grey-green or silvery green shade of the leaves of various species of the genus. The species name diffusa means diffuse and refers to the trailing nature of this species.

The pinnate leaflets occur in either pairs of 2-3 and are elliptic – oblong, measuring from 8-20mm long by 3-6 mm wide. The many-veined leaflets are prominent and large oval stipules are present. The inflorescence is an apical raceme and the flowers (15-20mm) are a brilliant pink, occurring on long stalks. Flowering occurs from October – May. Uses:

Traditional

T, diffusa has many traditional uses, including treatment of a wide range of ailments including chest ailments, fevers, lice and even internal parasites.

Pesticide

The roots of this otherwise innocent seeming plant were once used as a form of fish poison.

Gardening

The creeping nature of this species makes for good groundcover, is attractive, and as with all legumes, is a great way to naturally add nitrates to the soil.

Conservation Status

The conservation status of T. diffusa, according to SANBI is listed as of Least Concern (LC ).

Click here for more information on plants in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Click here for more information on the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

 

 

31 July, 2015: Springbuck on The Golf Estate

In this Issue

Springbuck on the Clarens Golf Estate;
Clarens Toursim Forum Report Back;
Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve;
Guided Hiking Tours;
Clarens Recycling Centre;
Fermenting Workshop- a Comprehensive look into Fermented Food and Beverages & Digestive Health;
Charlotte Theron Kinderhuis – Report Back;
It is time to plant fruit trees  (Reminder);
Maluti Radio – Listen Live;
EVENTS:;
Classifieds;
Contact us

Springbuck on the Clarens Golf Estate

13 Springbuck (1 ram and 12 ewes) were introduced to the Clarens Golf Estate on Wednesday.  And they are beautiful! Francois Schoeman the estate manager told Clarens News that aesthetics is the main reason for introducing the springbuck, and The Clarens Golf Estate is now the only 18-hole golf estate in the Eastern Freestate that offers golfers a bit of game viewing as they make their way around the course.   The springbuck are part of the Beukes Wildlife breeding program, and it is hoped that another 8 will be introduced towards the end of September.  Mrs Beukes however informed Clarens News, that it all depends on how well they settle in.   It seems that moving game is a tricky business and a lot of care is taken to ensure that animals adapt well to their new environment.  Hopefully all will go well, and these new residents will flourish in their new home.


 

Clarens Toursim Forum Report Back

The CTF held its AGM on Tuesday 28th July 2015 at Mont d’Or Hotel.   A new committee has been elected and they have a lot planned for the next year, including the Getaway Show, as well as a Market Research Survey.   (And since the last one was done in 2010 this is probably well overdue.)   Click here to read the full report.


Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Article and photography by  Damien Coulson
Head ranger:  Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts.

This week we’ll be looking at another member of the rather large Asteraceae (Daizy) family.

Helichrysum adenocarpum subsp. adenocarpum (Pink Strawflower in English, Pienksewejaartjie in Afrikaans and senkotoana in Sesotho) is a perennial herb, and occurs often in a reclining position, but may also be erect. The distributed is widespread from the Eastern Cape – Zim. This everlasting species is found in grassveld regions in close proximity to, or on moist slopes. It is a hardy species, as it tolerates both frost and drought and grows even at altitudes as high as 3000m A.S.L.

The specimen photographed was observed along the margins of the Porcupine trail, and was made even more eye-catching by the general dearth of other flowering plants in the vicinity in comparison to the almost iridescent pink-white sepals of this wildflower.  Read more

 


Guided Hiking Tours

The Clarens Village Nature Reserve rangers offer guided tours.   And since the rangers know and patrol every square inch of the Reserve and are responsible for maintaining the trails and keeping the Nature Reserve as beautiful and well-maintained as it is, I can’t think of anyone better to go with.   (You can read about the work they do in the monthly CVC reports on the Clarens News website:http://clarensnews.co.za/clarens-village-nature-reserve/   )


Clarens Recycling Centre

A very big THANK YOU to everyone who contributed towards the repair of the bailing machine.  We are happy to report that the bailing machine is back at the recycling centre and working well.   THANK YOU.  THANK YOU. THANK YOU.

Click here to find out more about the Clarens Recycling Centre


Fermenting Workshop- a Comprehensive look into Fermented Food and Beverages & Digestive Health

Deborah Sutherland is planning to visit Clarens in mid-September to run a 3-day Fermenting Workshop.   The workshop is structured so that all aspects of fermenting foods, beverages, condiments, nut and seed cheese’s may be covered. The history of fermented foods; why fermented foods and beverages are so important in gut health; understanding the digestive system; understanding the plant kingdom and our inter-relationship with one another…. Therefore understanding the true meaning of what health is about.   Deborah has recently held a workshop at Oaklands Manor  and the Clarens course will follow the same structure: Click here to see the program.
Should you be interested please contact Colleen:  colleenmc@mweb.co.za
To learn more about Deborah Sutherland and her workshops visit her facebook page


 

Charlotte Theron Kinderhuis – Report Back

Charlotte Theron Kinderhuis in Bethlehem has finally received their grant, so the crisis is over for the moment.   (What a relief.!)   They are managing well, but could, of course, always do with a little extra, especially Bovril, sandwich spread, fish paste, spices & dried herbs,( cinnamon, chicken spice, BBQ spice, thyme, pepper)  baking powder, bicarb, Maizena, sugar, margarine, tomato puree, mayonnaise, chutney, yeast, vinegar, pilchards in tomato sauce, tinned bully beef, fish fingers, meat patties, vinegar,Handy Andy, black bags. and personal hygiene products.

For further information call Margaret on 058 307 3708.

If you want to make a cash contribution, the banking details are C Theron Kinderhuis, ABSA 0770230101, branch code 632005.


It is time to plant fruit trees  (Reminder)

The Clarens winter may be harsh for some …..but it is peak trading season for De Leeuw Fruit Tree Nursery just outside Clarens. During the coldest months thousands of carefully cultivated, two-year old deciduous fruit trees are lifted from the field. The trees are sold to retail nurseries, small fruit growers, government departments and to individuals who just like picking fresh fruit off their own trees in the backyard.
The nursery which is situated about 10 km outside Clarens was started by Jim and Flos de Leeuw more than 80 years ago.  Their vision was to make fruit trees available to as many people as possible at affordable prices. Three generations later the vision continues with trees now supplied as far afield as Mpumalanga and KZN and exported to Swaziland and Lesotho.
Jimmy de Leeuw was one of the early headmasters at Clarens Primary School. He started planting peach pips as a hobby and initially gave the trees as gifts to friends and acquaintance. Florence Johnson, originally his colleague at the school, later became his wife. She initiated the importing of cultivars from overseas for grafting purposes. Florence (or Flos) de Leeuw later became the mayor of Clarens – apparently she was the first female mayor in the Free State – quite a feat for the village at the time! Read More


Maluti Radio – Listen Live

Click onto http://www.radiomaluti.co.za/gallery.html

To see the program schedule click here 


EVENTS:

Click  onto the links to learn more.
For more upcoming events visit the Clarens News website:   www.clarensnews.co.za

5th August, 2015


7-10 August. 2015
Rosendal Winterfees

 

 

 

11th August 2015
Police Forum and SAPS Update
NG Church Hall:  4pm

 

 

 

 

 

19th August 2015
CRA – CVC – CFA Important Meeting

 

 

 

 

 

28-30 August 2015
Getaway Show
G
et your brochures ready!

 

 

Classifieds

PLEASE NOTE THAT SR. ANTOINETTE EARLE OF PABALLO’S NURSING CARE @ CLARENS IS AVAILABLE FOR A NIGHT NURSING POSITION FROM AUGUST 2015.  PLEASE CONTACT SR. ANTOINETTE ON 083 236 1293

Dihlabeng Christian School in Clarens, requires a Grade RR (3,4,5 year olds) teacher with an ECD qualification for the month of September 2015.
Please send CV, qualifications and 2 recent contactable references by 31 July to: The Principal –dihlabengschool@intekom.co.za
Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website: there is also an employment opportunity for someone in Real Estate,  property for sale…….etc.etc.
Browse around – you’re bound to find something of interest.


 

Contact us

email:  editor@clarensnews.co.za

Gazania krebsiana

Gazania krebsiana Gazania krebsiana 2

 

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’ll be looking at a member of the rather large Asteraceae (Daizy) family.

Gazania krebsiana Less. subsp. serrulata (Common Gazania in English, Bruingousblom in Afrikaans and shoeshoe in Sesotho) is a perennial herb, distributed from the Western Cape – Mpum. Don’t let its’ diminutive size fool you though – this tough little guy can survive tough high-altitude winter and summer conditions at up to 3000m A.S.L.

The specimen photographed was observed recently on the Kloof Mountain trail. This find was lucky as usually the rocky grassland plateau is heavily grazed by cattle (for whom the flower is a delicacy).

The leaves of the Common Gazania are lanceolate measuring around 150X4mm, and the margins are sparesly hairy and rolled under, with an off-white midrib; dark/khaki-green above and grey-green below. A milky latex may be exuded when the leaves are damaged. The inflorescense is bourne aloft a stem of 100-120mm. The flowerheads (30-50mm) are mostly solitary, often with a few others in close proximity to the parent plant. The ray-florets are a butter-canary yellow. Some variants my even appear orange-red with dark spots at the base of the rays. Flowering usually occurs from Spring-mid summer; although this specimen was observed in early July (possibly as a result of warmer than usual winter tempretures and slightly elevated winter-rainfall). Uses:

Medicinal

Decoctions and infusions from several species of the Gazania genus may be used as analgesics to reduce pain in patients.

Traditional

Eaten raw by herdsmen and cattle alike as a source of nourishment and moisture. The felt/fine hairs on the underside of the leaves was rolled into twine to make skirts for rite-of-passage ceremonies. This was a painstakingly slow (and therefore costly) process as very small quantities of twine could be collected from each leave at a time. It makes sense then that these skirts were of high value to the Sesotho, and usually passed down from generation to generation until new skirts were required.

Gardening

The resilience and widespread distribution of this plant has made it a popular choice for gardens, with numerous cultivars having been produced over the last 60 odd years.

Conservation status

Gazania krebsiana Less. subsp. serrulata is listed as of Least Concern by SANBI.

Click here for more information on plants in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Click here for more information on the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

18th June, 2015

Horeb snow

In this issue:

Light snow in Clarens
Proposed development of a Dinosaur Interpretation Centre
SAPS Station Commander to Meet Clarens Residents (again)
Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve
More news from the Clarens Village Nature Reserve
News from the Clarens Tourism Forum
Snow bubbles
Children in Need – You can Help
Clarens Ratepayers Association News
EVENTS:
Classifieds
Contact us


Light snow in Clarens

We were treated to some light snow in Clarens this week,  but sadly for snow lovers we don’t seem to be due for more snow until (according to Acuweather)  3rd July.   Temperatures are warming up and we are set to enjoy some sunny weather until Wednesay 24th, when temperatures drop and we can all rush outside at dawn to make some snow bubbles!   (See the article further on.)   Go on….we dare you.


Proposed development of a Dinosaur Interpretation Centre

Proposed development of a Dinosaur Interpretation Centre on the Remaining Extent and Portion 1 of the Farm Glen Reenen No. 1361 within Golden Gate Highlands National Park, Bethlehem, Free State Province.

Notice is hereby given, in terms of the National Environmental Management Act, 1998 (Act No. 107 of 1998) (NEMA) EIA Regulations of 2014, that SANParks (the

Proponent) is proposing the above mentioned Project. The intended development shall trigger the following listed activities: Activity 12 of Government Notice No. R983 of 4 December 2014 (Listing Notice 1) and Activity 14 of Government Notice No. R985 of 4 December 2014 (Listing Notice 3). The date of placement of this notice is  4 June 2015. Queries regarding this matter must be referred to: The Environmental Consultant, Enviroworks, Suite 116, Private Bag X01, Brandhof, 9324 or contact Adél Groenewald  at Tel: 051 436 0793, Fax: 051 436 0791 or Email: adel@enviroworks.co.za.

Parties wishing to formally register as an I&AP are requested to forward their comments (and contact details) to Enviroworks within 30 days of placement of this advertisement, which is on or before 8 July 2015.


SAPS Station Commander to Meet Clarens Residents (again)

Following a very successful meeting on 9th June between Clarens residents and Lt Monica Botha, Lt Monica Botha, is planning to make this a monthly event, and she has set aside every second Tuesday of the month for this purpose.   The next meeting will be on Tuesday 9 July, at 16h00, at the NG Church Hall.  Now that she has settled in, Lt Botha is keen to meet the residents of Clarens and get to know those she serves.  You are encouraged to attend and bring along your friends and neighbours.   If you have concerns about safety, security or general issues in the village, this is your chance to share them with Lt Botha and your fellow citizens.


Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Article and photography by  Damien Coulson
Head ranger:  Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’ll be looking at a member of a rather large family – Hypoxidaceae (Star-flower).

Hypoxis costata (Small Yellow Star/African Potatoe in English, Geel-sterretjie/Afrika Patat in Afrikaans and Tapole in Sesotho) is a small perennial that obtains a height of around 150mm and grows best in moist rocky areas near kloofs and seepages at altitudes of up to 2400m A.S.L. The genus Hypoxis is cosmopolitan, occurring in Africa; North and South America; parts of Asia and Australia.   Read more


More news from the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

There’s always a lot happening in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve: Alien clearing, trail maintenance, environment education, and over 220 indigenous trees were planted in the nature reserve in May.    Click here to find out more.


News from the Clarens Tourism Forum

DEADLINE 19TH JUNE 2015

THERE STILL IS TIME TO GET ‘ON THE MAP’

Hi All

The new Clarens Visitors Map is progressing beautifully and has been met with great enthusiasm and excitement. This map will be available to Clarens Tourism Forum’s members only! You have until Friday the 19th to join up to get a business listing on the map. All advertising space has been filled for the 1st print run. Detmar Ruhfus from Kamikazidirt will be prepping the final layout at the end of this week. Click here to have a look at the latest draft copy, and click here for membership. Please complete and return to Nic Prinsloo rebellie@mweb.co.za In 3 easy steps, you too can be ‘on the map’! Sign up, pay up and return to Nic! Any questions, do not hesitate to contact any of the following people:

Ollie Esplin 0825636242;  Nic Prinsloo 0836278391;  Enrica Geyer 0849123773; Valerie Kneppert 0798731318; Leone du Preez 0823471379 or Tammy Hancock 0828249365.

Thank you,

Regards
Tammy
Clarens Tourism Forum
www.clarenssa.co.za
Cell:       082 8249365
Phone:   058 2561086


Snow bubbles

Should you be able to resist the temptation to stay in bed on these very chilly mornings, here’s a challenge you may like to try.   Temperatures between -9 and -12 Celsius are ideal for making snow bubbles – and judging from the photographs by Hope Thurston Carter, snow bubbles are absolutely gorgeous.
For more pics: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2955640/How-create-snow-globe-Soap-bubbles-blown-freezing-temperatures-turn-stunning-ice-crystals.html
And – so if you manage to capture some good pics of your snow bubbles – please send them in to editor@clarensnews.co.za.   We’d love to see them.


Children in Need – You can Help

The Charlotte Theron Kinderhuis / Charlotte Theron Orphanage in Bethlehem has not received their Government grant for the last two months. They are in a dire situation unable to feed and care for the children,  and are  appealing for assistance.

They house 120 orphans and children whose parent can no longer care for them. The children range from tiny babies to 16 year olds, from all the race groups in SA.

The appeal is for donations of either money or necessities such as bread, toiletries, toilet paper, etc. Farmers have donated meat, potatoes and maize.   If you have goods you would like to donate, they can collate a collection out of Clarens.
If you want more information you can call Margaret on 058 307 3708.

If you want to make a cash contribution, the banking details are C Theron Kinderhuis, ABSA 0770230101, branch code 632005.

Artist’s Café and Mona Liza’s Garment Gallery are hosting Andre Swiegers on the 4th of July 2015 @18h30 for 19h00  with the Charlotte Theron Kinderhuis as the beneficiary .
Tickets are R100 pp . 50 tickets available will enable us to give CTK a donation of R5000 . We would love to see this cause well supported by our locals.

Please come get your tickets at the Artist’s Café. Regards Karen and Phoebe


Clarens Ratepayers Association News

The Clarens’ Ratepayers Association will hold the 2015 Annual General Meeting on Wednesday, June 24 2015. The meeting will be held in the Methodist Church Hall at 4.30 p.m. At the AGM, we will be electing new Committee Members. I will be stepping down after 6 years as Chair, so too will Ralph and Rodney; Santi Meintjes, Sjoerd de Boer and Godfrey Allcock will remain on the Committee with one or two additional volunteers. We will also share with you various issues facing Clarens.  (Pat Raubenheimer)


EVENTS:

Click  onto the links to learn more.

20 June  2015
Clarens Country MarketSee you from 10 am onwards
24 June, 2015
Clarens Ratepayers Association AGM
26-28 June 2015
Platteland Preview
4 July, 2015
Fouriesburg Polar Bear Plunge
Be Luney for Cluney

4th July, 2015
Andre Swiegers at Artists Cafe
in aid of Charlotte Theron Kinderhuis
9th July, 2015
SAPS Station Commander to meet Clarens Residents
14-17 July, 2015
10th Clarens Quilt Festival

Classifieds

Restaurant, Guest House management for DecemberRemember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website, especially if you’re looking for someone to house sit your guest house or restaurant.  There are also people wanting to make ontact with old friends.   (See…..We’re looking for…… on the classifieds page.)
Browse around – you’re bound to find something of interest.


 

Contact us

email:  editor@clarensnews.co.za

Hypoxis costata

 

Hypoxis 1 Hypoxis 2

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’ll be looking at a member of a rather large family – Hypoxidaceae (Star-flower).

Hypoxis costata (Small Yellow Star/African Potatoe in English, Geel-sterretjie/Afrika Patat in Afrikaans and Tapole in Sesotho) is a small perennial that obtains a height of around 150mm and grows best in moist rocky areas near kloofs and seepages at altitudes of up to 2400m A.S.L. The genus Hypoxis is cosmopolitan, occurring in Africa; North and South America; parts of Asia and Australia.

The genus name Hypoxis is derived from the Greek Hypo (below) and oxys (sharp-pointed – in reference to the shape of the fruit) and is characterised by plants with small yellow, star-shaped flowers. The species name costata means lines/ rib-like ridges, in reference to the venation of the leaves.

The leaves of this species are relatively broad and measure 40mm wide by approx 150-170mm long. As the species name implies, the leaves are conspicuously ribbed. Leaves are densely hairy and produced with flowers. The flowers (30-40mm) are butter- canary yellow and are borne aloft a stalk as long as the leaves. Flowering occurs from Oct-Jan. Uses:

Traditional

Used as a charm to protect against lightning strikes. Hypoxis are tuberous and the corms; dark brown-black externally and yellow internally, are used for muti. Common ailments treated include dizziness; mental illness; bladder problems; weakness; burns; testicular cancer, and also provide the immune system with a general “boost”. Much research is on-going regarding the pharmacological effects of various species of the genus. Because of overharvesting for their use as muti-plants, several species of Hypoxis are under threat.

Ecology

Hypoxis flowers are short-lived and are pollinated by solitary insects and honey bees, their pollen appearing yellow in the translucent pollen-sacks of bees in flight.

Conservation status

  1. costata is listed as of Least Concern by SANBI.

Click here for more information on plants in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Click here for more information on the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

21 May 2015

IMG_0291

 

In this issue:

N3 Gateway Tourism Association
Focusing on our Animals
Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve
Paballo’s Nursing Care – Sisters on leave
CLARENS GARDEN CLUB
EVENTS:
Classifieds

 


 

N3 Gateway Tourism Association

Giving you over 150 experiences to Discover with the N3 Gateway  (Media Release)
The N3 Gateway Tourism Association has recently completed its third edition of the Discover the N3 Gateway Itinerary Brochure. The third edition tantalizes travelers with 37 new enjoyable adventures. This latest phase of the project brings the total number of itineraries available on to over 150. The brochure aims to package the regions abundant range of things to do and see into organised self-drive and facilitated itineraries. Each itinerary enables travelers to better understand the pre-trip logistics such as when to go or what to pack; and determine whether the experience is within their budget. The third edition was focused on including market research outcomes and therefore we included our Top Ten Itineraries as voted for by our fans. If you enjoy historic Battlefield tours or wine tasting in the Drakensberg or Meandering the Midlands there is plenty for you to do. For the adventurer there are expeditions into Lesotho or treks across the passes only the Voortrekkers were brave enough to conquer. Readers also have a choice of country wedding venues, challenging Tugela rafting adventures or Vaal river cruising luncheons. The cherry on the top is a Hot Air Balloon Flight ending with a champagne breakfast! The brochure will be distributed to our 14 recognised Tourism Information Nodes in May 2015 and will also be available at consumer shows such as the Gauteng Getaway Show in August.
Dont delay! Discover over 150 Itineraries with N3 Gateway.


Focusing on our Animals

A note from Cluny Animal Trust:

Finally our Mobile Veterinary Clinic arrived the 9th of May 2015, to everyone’s great surprise!
After nearly three years of agonizing waiting, disbelieving looks, and derision, we have reached the first step in our goal to provide proper veterinary care to all the impoverished animal owners and end the needless suffering of all types of animals. This past Tuesday, Dr Katherine Barker did the first sterilisation in our Mobile Unit. The dog named Vovo was neutered quickly, efficiently, and without any stressful travelling up and down. It is only the first of many happy dogs and owners benefiting from our mobile unit.

For more information or to see how you can support us, go towww.clunyanimaltrust.co.za

Our local Vet, Dr Katherine Barker, has moved to 59 Church Street (at the back of the house)– next to Lake Clarens Guest House.  Katherine’s consulting hours are 9.00 a.m. until 11.00 a.m. on weekdays, but the practice will be open from 8.30 a.m until 12.30 p.m. for the purchase of food, etc.  Diana Breshears will be in attendance at Reception during this time.

Look out for Hazel Moller and Michelle Maree who will be passing through Clarens next Monday.   These two crazy ladies are running the distance of 10 Comrades Ultra Marathons in 10 days!  

WHY????   It’s all about raising awareness for PETS

PETS (Pet Empowerment in Townships) strives to empower animals in townships and poor communities.  PETS was founded by Anoux Massey in 2007. She is a former heroin addict who believes a dog saved her life and got her off the streets. Animals have incredible therapeutic powers! PETS as three branches – JHB, Witbank and CT. They work with the community to improve the lives of these disadvantaged animals by giving them daily meals, warm shelters, regular inoculations, sterilisations and vet care in emergencies. They also rehome those ones that are unwanted, unloved or lost. PETs tries to instill in the communities, a responsibility and pride for their animals by not just empowering the animals, but also by educating and helping the people uplift themselves. They believe in working hand in hand with the animals and people of these impoverished areas to create unity, trust and stability for all.


Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Article and photography by
Damien Coulson
Head ranger:
Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-monthly Plant of Interest”. We’ll be focusing on a member of the Caryophyllaceae (Carnation) family.

Silene undulata (Gunpowder Plant or Dream Root in English, Wildetebak in Afrikaans and Molokoloko in Sesotho) is a frost and heat resistant perennial that grows up to 1000mm tall on moist, steep hill-slopes at altitudes ranging from 1550–2880 m A.S.L. This plant occurs from the Western Cape right through to Zimbabwe.

S. undulatamay be differentiated from a similar species; S. bellidoides primarily through its ecological range and habitat – S. bellidoides prefers open grassveld, and is substantially smaller at only 600mm. The species name undulata is derived from undulate, in botanical terms this refers to the undulating or “waving” nature of the leaves. The common name Gunpowder Plant is a reference to the dark colour of the seed-baring capsules held by this species. This particular specimen was observed for the first time on the new Caracal Contour Cycle trail on the day of the MTB Series race through the CNR.   Read more

 

 


Paballo’s Nursing Care – Sisters on leave

 

PABALLO’S NURSING CARE @ CLARENS

PLEASE NOTE THAT SISTER ANTOINETTE EARLE AND SISTER HENRIETTE HOHNE WILL BE TAKING THEIR ANNUAL LEAVE FROM TUESDAY 19 MAY 2015 UNTIL TUESDAY 9 JUNE 2015.


CLARENS GARDEN CLUB

The Clarens Garden Club is meeting at the home of Ann de Boer on Wednesday 27th May at 09:30 for 10:00 am. Ann’s address is 422 Berg Street. Dr Gideon Groenewald will speak to us about the Paleontological findings in Dr Gideon Groenewald will speak to us about the Paleontological findings in the Clarens/Golden Gate area. The catering team will be Trish Crichley, Margreet Koch and Sue Morel. Please remember to bring a plant to sell. There is no need to bring a chair on  this occasion.
Directions: From the Square, drive down van Zyl Street, passing Clementine’s Restaurant  on your left. You will come to a T-junction in front of Aspen House. Turn left  down Berg Street and go as far as the second last house on your right. There is  ample parking space. Hoping to see you all there. Kind regards, Leoné du Preez (Secretary) Tel: 058 256 1738 Cell: 082 347 1379 Fax: 086 275 6273 E-mail: leone@tiscali.co.za


EVENTS:

 

22 May  2015
Clarens Country MarketSee you from 10 am onwards
20-24 May, 2015
Marke Meyer at Robert Badenhorst Art Gallery
22nd May, 2015
Desire Crowther Art Gallery opening
22 – 24 May, 2015
Smoking Dragon – Adrenalin Festival
27th May, 2015
Clarens Garden Club meeting
9.30 am at 422 Berg Street
Speaker:  Dr Gideon Groenwald
22nd May, 2015
Marke Meyer Exhibition – Official opening by Barbie Meyer
6pm Robert Badenhorst Gallery
30 May, 2015
Opening of Madame Butterfly’s sister shop
Rosemary Centre
26-28 June 2015
Platteland Preview

Classifieds

Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website, especially if you’re looking for property to let, or a new employment opportunity
Browse around – you’re bound to find something of interest.

8th May, 2015

IMG_0291


 

 

A very tough job ?  (Specially for Mom)

Some would say that this is the toughest job in the world.   Have a look at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HB3xM93rXbY.    Some of you may already have all the necessary experience.


 

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT FROM THE POLICE FORUM:

Since posting this item on our facebook page four days ago, this announcement has reached 1,480 people and been shared 15 times.    But just in case you’re not a facebook fan…..here it is again.

Toyota Thefts in Clarens

The Clarens Sector Police Forum has received important information on the recent spate of Toyota thefts in Clarens. Vehicles, all Toyotas, have been stolen from private residences and hotels in the village over the past few weeks in spite of a campaign by the Police Forum to alert Toyota owners to this threat. However, the diligence of a Police Forum reservist has provided details of the vehicles used by the gang responsible.
The residents of Clarens are asked to be on the lookout for the following vehicles, believed to be involved in the Toyota thefts:
• An old-model white Isuzu double cab bakkie which is known to be changing its number plates, although the following numbers have been observed: BDB 461 H; PRB 895 B (both orange numerals); and FND 895 GP
• A newer, blue Ford Ranger double cab, for which no numbers are available. These vehicles are known to travel together but please be aware that the occupants are considered to be armed and dangerous and should not be approached. If you see either of these vehicles please contact the Clarens Police station on 058 256 6000/1/2; Warrant Officer Steyn (082 466 8904); or Lt. Botha (082 419 7094).
The SAPS would also like to remind the public that there is an anonymous reporting box situated at the Trading Post next to the Post office, which can be used to anonymously provide information that may be useful to the police.


And on a similar note:  Be aware

Tim Moorcroft has had his credit card “skimmed”  over the last two to three days.   The fraud squad suspect that this took place in either Clarens or Bethlehem.   I suppose all of us in Clarens need to realise that we are part of the big wide world after all.   On the upside – where else would this incident make the NEWS ?


Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Article and photography by
Damien Coulson
Head ranger:
Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts.  This week we’ll be focusing on a member of the…take a deep breath because it’s another long unusual scientific name… Orobanchaceae(Broomrape)family – whew!

Known by its English common name, Yellow Witchweed (or Verfblommetjie) Alectra sessiliflora is actually an herbaceous hemiparasitic plant on grasses, occurring at altitudes of up to 2900m A.S.L., from the Western Cape through to equatorial Africa. Hemi-parasites are very interesting and rather unusual in that they can obtain nourishment from photosynthesis (as with all true plants), but can also leach nutrients from other plants. A more common example of this occurs in the plant Viscum capense – the Cape Mistletoe. This food production strategy could theoretically afford these plants an advantage of most other plants that rely solely on photosynthesis for the production of sugars, especially in areas of semi-permanent shade, in waterlogged soils or in low soil ph.
Read more


More about our Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve


Damien Coulson
Head ranger:
Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Damien’s articles are attracting attention far and wide.   Clarens News frequently gets letters asking for Damien’s details, and it seems that his informative articles are being used to good effect:   See the letter below:

Dear Damien
Hope you good and well, I have exciting news. The article on Scabiosa columbaria has been published online Sanbi’s  Plantzafrica, I couldn’t have done this without your assistance your photographs were of great help. Thank you very much, keep on assisting not only me and also others.  The link:

http://pza.sanbi.org/scabiosa-columbaria

Kind regards, Ofentse Naanyane, Conservation Intern, Free State National Botanical Garden


Paballo’s Nursing Care – Sisters on leave

PABALLO’S NURSING CARE @ CLARENS

PLEASE NOTE THAT SISTER ANTOINETTE EARLE AND SISTER HENRIETTE HOHNE WILL BE TAKING THEIR ANNUAL LEAVE FROM TUESDAY 19 MAY 2015 UNTIL TUESDAY 9 JUNE 2015.


Press release issued by Business Connexion  Johannesburg, 5 May 2015

Business Connexion, in partnership with Clarens Combined Churches in Action (CCIA), have come together to provide community development initiatives for the community of Kgubetswana in Clarens by supporting the Bana ba Hlokang (children in need) Community Centre.

Since 2009, Business Connexion has been making an annual monetary donation, which has contributed to the running of Bana ba Hlokang Centre, an initiative of a network of churches in Clarens called Combined Churches in Action.

The non-profit organisation works to improve the lives of the community of Clarens through programmes such as youth development, HIV/Aids education and programmes for the physically disabled. Through this donation, the centre is able to offer children computer classes, sports, after-school lessons, play therapy counselling, and helps feed over 200 children a week. The donation also contributes to supporting the arts centre, which is aimed at bringing an education of the arts to the community, which includes programmes such as ballet, art and music. CCIA is also one of the nine development organisations that was chosen to be part of the shareholding structure of BCX.   Read more


EVENTS:

 

9 May  2015
Clarens Country MarketSee you from 10 am onwards
9th May, 2015
Cluny Animal Trust Golf Day
10th May, 2015
Rock and Roll Mother’s Day Brunch
from 11am at Bon Appetit, Rosemary Centre 
15-17 May, 2015Dan Patlansky Guitar Weekend

Only 30 places available – book now if you want to attend.

16 May, 2015
Anglican Autumn FairUitkyk Farm (Green Goose)

 

20-24 May, 2015

Marke Meyer at Robert Badenhorst Art Gallery

 

22 – 24 May, 2015

Smoking Dragon – Adrenalin Festival

22nd May, 2015
Marke Meyer Exhibition – Official opening by Barbie Meyer
6pm Robert Badenhorst Gallery 
30 May, 2015Opening of Madame Butterfly’s sister shop
Rosemary Centre

 

 

 


Classifieds

Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website, especially if you have property to let.
Browse around – you’re bound to find something of interest.

Alectra sessiliflora

Alectra sessiliflora 1 Alectra sessiliflora 2



Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts.  This week we’ll be focusing on a member of the…take a deep breath because it’s another long unusual scientific name… Orobanchaceae(Broomrape)family – whew!

Known by its English common name, Yellow Witchweed (or Verfblommetjie) Alectra sessiliflora is actually an herbaceous hemiparasitic plant on grasses, occurring at altitudes of up to 2900m A.S.L., from the Western Cape through to equatorial Africa. Hemi-parasites are very interesting and rather unusual in that they can obtain nourishment from photosynthesis (as with all true plants), but can also leach nutrients from other plants. A more common example of this occurs in the plant Viscum capense – the Cape Mistletoe. This food production strategy could theoretically afford these plants an advantage of most other plants that rely solely on photosynthesis for the production of sugars, especially in areas of semi-permanent shade, in waterlogged soils or in low soil ph.

The Greek Alectra is derived from Alector or cockscomb (in reference to leaf morphology).Sessiliflora refers to flowers occurring without a stalk and arises directly from the stem. Not many know that the leaves turn black if the plant has been damaged or crushed. A. sessiliflora differs from A. basutica in several respects – it occurs at higher altitudes, prefers moist to dry grassland, is not limited to the Eastern Mountain Region (EMR), the inflorescence is terminal as opposed to a long spike in A. basutica.

sessiliflora obtains a high of 250mm (sometimes doubled depending on terrain). Leaves measure around 30mmX20mm, are spear-tipped and have toothed, fairly hairless margins. The stems are a characteristic purple/black and sparsely haired. The inflorescence is terminal and the bracts mimic leaves, complete with toothed margins. The flowers (around 15mm across) are yellow, barely protruding from their calyx and may grade to orange-yellow with darker veins, with hairless filaments. Flowering occurs from November – March.

Traditional uses

The rootstock was once utilised as a yellow-orange dye in clothing. Hence the Afrikaans vernacular – Verfblommetjie. This plant has also been ingested as a treatment for bacterial and fungal ailments and has been scientifically proven to show antimicrobial chemical properties.

Conservation Status

The SANBI conservation status for A. sessiliflora is listed as Least Concern.

 

Click here for more information on plants in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Click here for more information on the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

24th April, 2015: Celebrating Freedom

Peerneef evening - Fouriesberg roadMG_0018

 

Celebrating Freedom

On Monday (27th April) South Africa celebrates Freedom Day.  Freedom Day (27 April) is a national public holiday in South Africa and serves to commemorate the country’s first democratic post-Apartheid elections, held in 1994.  It’s also a day where we can all take a little time out to reflect on the role which each and every South African needs to play to ensure that our country moves forward – and who could say it better than Nelson Mandela:

Our daily deeds as ordinary South Africans must produce an actual South African reality that will reinforce humanity’s belief in justice, strengthen its confidence in the nobility of the human soul, and sustain all our hopes for a glorious life for all. 

Clarens News would like to take this opportunity to wish all our readers a wonderful weekend, and a meaningful Freedom Day on Monday.


Ashburton MTB Clarens


The Ashburton MTB race held in Clarens last weekend was a resounding success.   The event attracted 2200 entrants – many of whom had travelled from Europe – and comments ranged from “this is the best in the world” to “fabulous route, fantastic scenery…it simply couldn’t be better.”    Advendurance organizers put a large part of their success down to the wonderful co-operation they got from the farmers en-route, who went to great lengths to make sure that the event would be a success.   The Clarens Village Nature Reserve’s new trail (Caracul trail) which formed part of the route also got rave reviews.   This is an event which Clarens can certainly be proud of and speaking to Clarens restaurants and businesses, it quickly becomes obvious that this event helped to make for a bumper weekend in the town itself, so a big THANK YOU to Advendurance for bringing MTB to Clarens.
Local organizer Paul is very pleased with how well the event went off, and anticipates that interest in Clarens MTB will continue to grow and to go from strength to strength.   He did however add, that the size of MTB Clarens will always be limited by the amount of accommodation available in Clarens.
Have a look at the Ashburton MTB series website:  http://www.nationalmtbseries.com.  to see their video feature, highlighting this year’s race.


Classic Cars:  SARRA MacGregor Maluti Meander

Classic car enthusiasts are in for another treat this Sunday.   (And didn’t you just love the jaguars that visited us in March.)   This weekend SARRA are holding the MacGregor Maluti Meander and the 29 Classic cars participating in this event will arrive in Clarens on Sunday, where they will be joined by classic cars belonging to the Maluti Auto Club.
SARRA stands for the South African Regularity Rally Association.   Classic Regularity Rallying is modeled on the rallies of earlier times where a crew of driver and navigator needed to keep their rally car on the route and on time, catering for many scheduled speed and direction changes, the weather, traffic and road conditions. The famous LM rally was run on this principle until the 1970’s, as was the Monte Carlo rally. It is a sport of precision and accuracy, rather than an all out quest for speed like the modern special stage rallies.
To learn more about Regularity Rallying visit the SARRA website: http://www.sarra.co.za/


7 Things to Do in Clarens

We love it when we find a blog about Clarens.   Have a look at http://myslowjourney.com/2015/04/21/7-things-to-do-in-clarens/
There are of course a lot more than 7 Things to Do in Clarens.   Just have a look at the Clarens News Website page for Activities:   http://clarensnews.co.za/activities


And even MORE Things to Do in Clarens

Dons Kritzinger has sent us a list giving information on activites, clubs and the churches in Clarens.   Dons put this list together specially for  Newly Arrived Inhabitants of Clarens.   (And even though we’ve been around for a while, we found quite a lot of information we didn’t know about.  Thank you Dons.)
Click here to see the list


Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Article and photography by
Damien Coulson
Head ranger:
Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts.  After some time out due to the recent MTB Cycle Series race through Clarens this past weekend, the CVC can now breathe a sigh of relief…and continue producing interesting articles. This week we’re going off on a slightly fresher tangent – we’ll be focusing on an exotic member of the Asteraceae (Daizy) family.

Cirsium vulgare (Scotch Thistle in English, Skotsedissel in Afrikaans) is considered a naturalised exotic in S.A. This group are Alien & Invasive Plants (A&IP’s) that have occurred within our country for a long enough period of time, measured in decades, to be deemed “natural” (though not to say beneficial, and more likely detrimental to local ecosystems). C. vulgare occurs naturally in parts of Africa and Asia, New Zealand, Australia, USA, Canada, South America, Hawaii and the Pacific islands, but is classified as a Category 1 weed.  Read more

 

 

 


Foot Clinic in Clarens

 


The editorial staff had a special treat this week.   Sister Julie visited us on the Golf Estate and tended our feet.   Oh what bliss.   And to think we didn’t even have to go anywhere for this amazing treatment.   Sister Julie works at Hospice in Bethlehem, but is happy to call on you after hours and over weekends  to make your feet happy for you .


Street Numbers in Clarens

(Letter from the Clarens Chamber of Commerce)

The CRA has put communiques out regarding the implementation of street number changes, specifically the deadline.  This process was kicked off several years ago before the existence of the Chamber of Commerce.  The Chamber has received complaints from businesses regarding the changes, specifically the cost of change,  and has had meetings with the CRA to try and determine the reasoning and where in the process the change is. Besides wanting to conform to street numbering in the rest of SA, the CRA is concerned that erf numbers do not appear on GPS tracking data making it impossible for emergency services, deliveries and visitors to track places down.  Whilst this may have been the case many years ago when the process was kicked off, it is not the case today and every erf number in Clarens appears on GPS data maps; probably a result of Google charting the data 2 or so years ago.   As part of the process the CRA has  contacted Garmin to determine how long it would take for street numbers to be listed as opposed to erf numbers and the answer is quite simply that they don’t know.

 To this end, the position of the Chamber is that none of the businesses (or the residents for that matter) are obligated to display the street number as opposed to the erf number until such time that the electronic and print versions of the relevant maps have been updated.


Big upcoming Event in November – Get ready NOW!

 BMW Motorrad Days 6 – 8 NOVEMBER 2015 Make Life a Ride – all the way to BMW Motorrad Days 2015 WANTED:  Your Accommodation WHY:BMW are bringing their Motorrad event to Clarens in November, attracting 2000 – 3000 enthusiasts. Every single bed in Clarens and its surrounds will be booked out for this event. Problem is, not every bed is known! Please supply the details of your establishment/guesthouse/B ; B/farmstay etc., with email address, to ensure that you do not miss out. Please spread the word to those who do not have access to the internet. Tell your friends, family, neighbours, etc. Details can be sent to: TAMMY HANCOCK ctf@clarenssa.co.za   or NATALIE MEYER clarenschamber@gmail.com


EVENTS:

25 April  2015
Clarens Country Market

See you from 10 am onwards 

29 April, 2015
Clarens Garden Club Meeting
St. Fort
30 April – 2 May
Photography Workshop – Rosendal
Presented by Hanne Koster
1st and 2nd May 2015
Andre the Hilarious Hypnotist
Martie Lotz Hall
2nd May, 2015
Gule Wamkulu
Ism-Skism Gallery“Gule Wamkulu:The Big Dance”
by Africa Geographic photographer Andrew Brukman.
  3rd May, 2015

Book Launch: Bibliophile
The Pursuit of Life, David Zefferit

David Zeffertt has been a soldier, a shepherd, a trade-union organiser, a public servant, an advocate, and, for over forty years, a professor of law. He continued full-time lecturing until the age of seventy-two and published his last legal book in his eighties.
This delightful collection of short stories is his first published work of fiction. and will be launched to the public at 10 am on 3 May 2015 at our bookshop, Bibliophile.

 

9th May, 2015

Cluny Animal Trust Golf Day

  15-17 May, 2015
Dan Patlansky Guitar Weekend

Only 30 places available – book now if you want to attend.

  16 May, 2015

Anglican Autumn Fair

Uitkyk Farm (Green Goose)

  18-21 May, 2015

Richard Rennie “Paint with Me” workshop

 

 

 

 


Win 2 tickets to the Smoking Dragon Adrenalin Festival

It sound like fun, fun, fun.   To win 2 tickets be the first person to print a page of this newsletter and take it round to Lauren at Peter Badcock-Walters Gallery On the Square.


And – Speaking of Events:

SA’s most loved festival will be back in 2016. We cannot wait to see all you craft beer lovers again…
Tickets will go on sale in November, take our advice and book your accommodation now.


Classifieds

Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website, especially if you have property to let.
Browse around – you’re bound to find something of interest.

Cirsium vulgare

Cirsium vulgare 1 Cirsium vulgare 2
Cirsium vulgare 3

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts.  After some time out due to the recent MTB Cycle Series race through Clarens this past weekend, the CVC can now breathe a sigh of relief…and continue producing interesting articles. This week we’re going off on a slightly fresher tangent – we’ll be focusing on an exotic member of the Asteraceae (Daizy) family.

Cirsium vulgare (Scotch Thistle in English, Skotsedissel in Afrikaans) is considered a naturalised exotic in S.A. This group are Alien & Invasive Plants (A&IP’s) that have occurred within our country for a long enough period of time, measured in decades, to be deemed “natural” (though not to say beneficial, and more likely detrimental to local ecosystems). C. vulgare occurs naturally in parts of Africa and Asia, New Zealand, Australia, USA, Canada, South America, Hawaii and the Pacific islands, but is classified as a Category 1 weed.

Many of you will have recognised this striking purple flower from disturbed areas including roadsides, old farmlands, along riparian zones and urban fringes. Make no mistake though – once those spiny leaves make contact with your skin you’ll be itching and scratching for the rest of the day. A&IP’s such as this species rely on wind and avian dispersal and through some feed-stocks to spread into new areas.

The leaves of C. vulgare (are pretty vulgare when catching one’s bare skin) are 70-300 mm long, roughly lance-shaped with spine-like margins and covered in fine hairs. The stems extend up to 2 m on average, spreading from the base into a mess of dense, multi-stemmed and near impenetrable foliage. Flowers develop at the apex of the plant, flowering takes place in late summer to early autumn (Feb-Apr). The purple flower heads typically measure 40-50 mm in diameter by 25-50 mm wide, complete with narrow, spine-tipped bracts. The wind-dispersed fruits have several bristles on the tip and are up to 5 mm long. Uses:

Traditional uses

The seed fluff makes excellent tinder that is easily lit by a spark from a flint and the petals have been used as chewing gum/tobacco alternative. The oil from these seeds has reportedly been extracted for use in cooking and in lamps for lighting.

Ecological Threat

The fluffy-white seed of C. vulgare are highly viable and once introduced spreads rapidly if not swiftly controlled. This is one of several species that the CVC actively strives to eradicate and is most simply done through uprooting using a spade, cutting off of the flower-heads, placing them into a bag and burning in an enclosed chamber (or in an area with no wind). The spiny form of this species renders it unpalatable to both wildlife and livestock. If left unchecked, this species encloses old farmlands and grazed grassveld areas, leaving the land largely fallow and vulnerable to erosion and subsequently, degradation.

Conservation Status

The SANBI conservation status for C. vulgare is listed as Not Defined.

 

Click here for more information on plants in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Click here for more information on the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

10th April, 2015: Welcome to Autumn

 

AutumnIMG_0025

 

Nights are getting cooler, and it’s time to start ordering your firewood, and unpacking your winter coats.   There are signs of seasonal change everywhere, so despite the sunny days, and the greening brought about by our recent rain, we need to start preparing for much colder weather ahead.   People are predicting snow for Clarens this winter.   Oh well, we just have to wait and see.


 

Meiringskloof

Meiringskloof has always been a very good reason for people to visit Fouriesburg.   We sent Lauren Moorcroft to go and have a look – and she’s written an article about her “Day out of Clarens.”   Click here to read it.  (We really enjoyed her recount of the creatures she met in the cave – and can only hope that Damien had nothing to do with this particular part of her adventure.)

If you’re planning to visit Fouriesburg, have a look at the articles on the Self-Drive pages of the website.
Clarens to Fouriesburg
C
larens to Fouriesburg (The Caledon Loop)


Creative Hands – 60 artists/crafters receive their certificates

 

You could almost taste the excitement when 60 local artists and crafters gathered in the Martie Lotz Hall yesterday, to receive their Clarens Creative Hands Certificates.   The Creative Hands project has been working with these artists and crafters for nearly two months, and it has been extremely exciting to see how the Art Aid team have managed to coax and inspire our local artists, giving them the encouragement and confidence needed to go forward and establish successful careers in a most demanding field.   It was a very special occasion.  Not least because we had the opportunity to meet  Dr Narissa Ramdhini, CEO, of the Ifa Lethu Foundation.   You very quickly get the impression that she is not only committed but also extremely determined not only to enable artists and crafters to build sustainable businesses, but also to preserve our cultural heritage with skills from the past being developed and passed on to the next generation.   What’s more Ifa Lethu is committed to continue helping our local artists and hope to establish a retail outlet for these talented artists and crafters right here in Clarens. Read more


Clarens Fire Association Newsletter

Everyone will remember the devastating wildfires of 2014.   During these fires we had tremendous goodwill from the community which helped to keep the morale of the firefighers high.   We also had great support for our fundraising golf day held on Saturday 1st November 2014.   This was our most successful golf day held to date and enables us to keep or Clarens Working on Fire team operational.  The cost of transporting and providing food only for the WoF teams utilised over the last fire season was nearly R100,000.   Read more


Foot Clinic in Clarens

 


Welcome Sister Julie
Sister Julie specialises in foot care and especially foot care for diabetics.
So now there’s no excuse not to go walking in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve.


Clarens has a new Pub.

Clarens has a new pub:   Jack & Jill, Pub & Grill.
They’re opening today.   You’ll find them in Sias Oosthuizen Street (next to Fully Connected.)


 

China in South Africa Week:  12-20 April, 2015

The Free State Provincial Government, lead by the Hon. Premier. Mr E.S. Magashule will be hosting approximately 500 Chinese investors during the week of the 12th – 19th April 2015.

The objective of hosting this event is as follows:
1. To improve the relations and partnership with our current and future Chinese investors;
2. South Africa imports more commodities and goods than we export, our aim is to sell our province and its potential to the Chinese, work towards providing an enabling platform for the Chinese to invest in our province with the intention and view to increase our export profile.
3. To provide a holistic tour experience across the province, in an aim to temporary increase consumer spending during the tours and to sell the Tourism sector as a growing sector in the Free State Province.

Click here for more information


 

Big upcoming Event in November – Get ready NOW!

 

BMW Motorrad Days 6 – 8 NOVEMBER 2015

Make Life a Ride – all the way to BMW Motorrad Days 2015

WANTED:  Your Accommodation

WHY:  BMW are bringing their Motorrad event to Clarens in November,

attracting 2000 – 3000 enthusiasts.

Every single bed in Clarens and its surrounds will be booked out for this

event. Problem is, not every bed is known! Please supply the details of your

establishment/guesthouse/B & B/farmstay etc., with email address, to ensure

that you do not miss out. Please spread the word to those who do not have

access to the internet. Tell your friends, family, neighbours, etc.

Details can be sent to: TAMMY HANCOCK ctf@clarenssa.co.za   or

                                   NATALIE MEYER clarenschamber@gmail.com


EVENTS

11 April 2015
Clarens Country Market

2-12 April, 2015Stars of Sandstone

A large collection of Heritage items from 2-ft narrow guage locomotives, steam traction engines, vintage agricultural machinery, old cars, aircraft and military vehicles are brought to life during the show.

Josie Field

10 April, 2015

Josie Field in Rosendal

Rosa Theatre

    11 April, 2015
Clarens Sector Police Forum, Kia and Radio
Maluti Golf Day.
 18-19 April 2015
Ashburton National MTB Series – Clarens
Clarens hosts #3 of the Ashburton National MTB Series: an exciting 7 leg  National marathon mountain biking series spanning 6 South African provinces.

Classifieds

Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website, especially if you have property to let.

 

27 March, 2015

The Clarens Village Nature Reserve

SAMSUNG CSC

I’m sure that every Clarens resident would agree that that The Clarens Village Nature Reserve is a real asset to Clarens.  We are so lucky to have a team of dedicated rangers to protect and maintain this very valuable “little piece of heaven” .   It doesn’t however just happen.   It takes hard work and commitment, as you will see when you read the Reports sent in by head ranger Damien Coulson.    Click here to find out what the rangers have been up, news on the new trail, and the on-going battle against aliens.


Writing is a dangerous occupation?

It seems that writing should now be seen as a dangerous occupation.   Even expressing an opinion could be seen as being prevocative enough to invite violence.   And if you think that this sort of thing could only happen in France or the Middle East, think again.   The recent attack on Zainub Priva Dala in Durban proves that even in South Africa, one needs to be extremely careful.   And where is this going to stop.   Clarens News shared a post from the Books Live blog http://sapen.bookslive.co.za/blog/2015/03/24/open-letter-from-pen-south-africa-violent-intimidation-of-writers-must-not-be-tolerated/ on our facebook page.   The blog starts off with the following:

On Wednesday March 18 author, Zainub Priya Dala was violently attacked as she left her hotel during the Time of the Writer Festival in Durban. A woman driving alone, she was harassed by three men who forced her off the road, cornered her, held a knife at her throat, smashed a brick in her face, and called her “Rushdie’s bitch”. The day before she had been asked about writers she admired: Salman Rushdie’s name had figured on a long list of others. People walked out in protest.

We at Clarens News hope that you will agree that every South African citizen has the right to their own opinion, although clearly there are some who don’t agree.

(And to think that in last week’s news we celebrated Human Rights and Storytelling Day.)


Word Riders visit Clarens

DCS  Word Riders 1

Word Riders were in Clarens last Sunday, and met with Alan Goodson (Dihlabeng Christian School) along with 5 of the Dihlabeng Christian School grade 7 pupils; Pontsho Koti from Clarens Combined, as well as two other principals from local farm schools.    

The Word Riders are a group of Christian motorbike enthusiasts who travel to different parts of South Africa annually for Bible Distribution.

Along the route, the Word Riders distribute Bibles among school children who cannot afford a Bible of their own. These Bibles are made possible by the Bible Society of South Africa’s Bibles for Grade 7 learners project as well as by funds raised by the motorcyclists themselves.   You can follow the word riders experiences on their blog: https://wordriders.wordpress.com

For more information about the Bible Society of South Africa, visit  http://www.biblesociety.co.za


Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Trifolium burchelianum
Damien1-100x100Article and photograph by
Damien Couson
Head ranger Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’re focusing on a member of the Leguminosae (Pea or legume) family.

Trifolium burchellianum (Wild Clover in English, Wildeklaver in Afrikaans and musa-pelo in Sesotho) is a creeping annual herb growing to a regal height of just 200mm. For something so small it manages to scale to incredible heights of around 2800 m A.S.L., and enjoys moist grassland and grassland-rock ecotones. This tough little herb has a wide geographical distribution, ranging from the Western Cape through to the equatorial regions of Africa.

As the name Trifolium implies, the leaves of this herb are arranged in 3’s (tri = 3 and folium = leaves).T. burchellianum differs from a very similar species – T. africanum in that the former has broad leaves and pink florets, whilst the latter has narrow leaves with almost red florets. Their distribution does overlap so look closely, as what may appear as a single subspecies could possibly be 2.  T. burchellianum is one of only 2 subspecies that are indigenous to Africa.  Read more


EVENTS

28 March 2015
Clarens Country Market


28th March 2015
Clarens Life-Style Cook Off

Specially for Vegans and Vegetarians 


29th March, 2015
Natalie Chapman at The Grouse and Claret
Natalie Chapman is a proud ambassador and Board Member of Epic Foundation.  Natalie will be at Friends as part of her 90 Days, 90 Towns, 180 Gigs fundraising tour for Epic Foundation:   Click here to  find out more about her tour.


Wyndford Holicay Farm

30 March, 2015

Natalie Chapman at Wyndford Holiday Farm

 

 

 


2-12 April, 2015

Stars of Sandstone

A large collection of Heritage items from 2-ft narrow guage locomotives, steam traction engines, vintage agricultural machinery, old cars, aircraft and military vehicles are brought to life during the show.


 

3-6 April, 2015

Yvette Art Exhibition: Robert Badenhorst Gallery
An opportunity to view Yvette’s art work and to meet her.   Yvette will be paining outside the gallery during the course of the exhibition.

 


3 April, 2015
The Hip Replacements:  Grouse and Claret 

 

 

 

 

 


jamming

3-6 April, 2015

Jammin n Ting

Rustlers Valley

 The festival aims to promote the best of African and African inspired music as well as providing guests with a welcoming break from the urban lifestyle. 

4 April, 2015
Festival of Dirt   (Enduro bikes)
Enduro World Mountain Madalas Ride
This year’s event will take place at “The Old Mill Drift” .


  4th April, 2015
Flea Market Clarens Square


 

Josie Field

10 April, 2015

Josie Field in Rosendal

Rosa Theatre


11 April, 2015
Clarens Sector Police Forum, Kia and Radio Maluti Golf Day.


 

  18-19 April 2015
Ashburton National MTB Series – Clarens
Clarens hosts #3 of the Ashburton National MTB Series: an exciting 7 leg  National marathon mountain biking series spanning 6 South African provinces.


 

 


Classifieds
Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website, especially if you have property to let.

Writing is a dangerous occupation?

It seems that writing should now be seen as a dangerous occupation.   Even expressing an opinion could be seen as being prevocative enough to invite violence.   And if you think that this sort of thing could only happen in France or the Middle East, think again.   The recent attack on Zainub Priva Dala in Durban proves that even in South Africa, one needs to be extremely careful.   And where is this going to stop.   Clarens News shared a post from the Books Live blog http://sapen.bookslive.co.za/blog/2015/03/24/open-letter-from-pen-south-africa-violent-intimidation-of-writers-must-not-be-tolerated/ on our facebook page.   The blog starts off with the following:

On Wednesday March 18 author, Zainub Priya Dala was violently attacked as she left her hotel during the Time of the Writer Festival in Durban. A woman driving alone, she was harassed by three men who forced her off the road, cornered her, held a knife at her throat, smashed a brick in her face, and called her “Rushdie’s bitch”. The day before she had been asked about writers she admired: Salman Rushdie’s name had figured on a long list of others. People walked out in protest.

We at Clarens News hope that you will agree that every South African citizen has the right to their own opinion, although clearly there are some who don’t agree.

 

Trifolium burchellianum

Trifolium burchelianum

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’re focusing on a member of the Leguminosae (Pea or legume) family.

Trifolium burchellianum (Wild Clover in English, Wildeklaver in Afrikaans and musa-pelo in Sesotho) is a creeping annual herb growing to a regal height of just 200mm. For something so small it manages to scale to incredible heights of around 2800 m A.S.L., and enjoys moist grassland and grassland-rock ecotones. This tough little herb has a wide geographical distribution, ranging from the Western Cape through to the equatorial regions of Africa.

As the name Trifolium implies, the leaves of this herb are arranged in 3’s (tri = 3 and folium = leaves). T. burchellianum differs from a very similar species – T. africanum in that the former has broad leaves and pink florets, whilst the latter has narrow leaves with almost red florets. Their distribution does overlap so look closely, as what may appear as a single subspecies could possibly be 2. T. burchellianum is one of only 2 subspecies that are indigenous to Africa.

Leaves are hairless, 3-foliolate, broad (25 X 20mm) and wedge or heart shaped and very finely toothed. The floret head (approx. 30mm) is held aloft a stalk of around 70mm and is clustered and pink/purple. The flowers are small, often measuring less than 10mm. Flowering: Dec-March. Uses:

Food:

Our rangers report using this herb as a light snack as kids. The flower head is predominantly eaten and has a cabbage-like aftertaste – not completely unpleasant. It could make for an interesting decoration in some food dishes such as pasta or even a curry. Livestock have been seen grazing this species as an almost favourite food-source.

Traditional Uses:

Reportedly, T. burchellianum has been used in traditional medicines – it can be chewed, infused as a tea to combat heart ailments, it has diuretic properties, helps induce sweeting and cleansing and is used in the treatment of sore throats.

Ecology

The fragrant flower-heads are frequented by insects such as butterflies during the summer season. It may also have a role as ground cover in relatively well-shaded areas.

Conservation Status

The SANBI conservation status for T. burchellianum is listed as of Least Concern.

Click here for more information on plants in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Click here for more information on the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

March 21, 2015: Equinox, Rights and Storytelling

Equinox

Today – March 21 – is the Equinox – a day when, to quote Wikepedia, the sun’s disk crosses the horizon directly in the east at dawn and directly in the west at dusk.   An event which is important enough to dictate the date of Easter.   Christian churches calculate Easter as the first Sunday after the first full moon on or after the March Equinox – and the official church date for the equinox is March 21.   (So now you know why Easter dates change from year to year.)


 

Human Right’s Day

Today is also Human Right’s Day, which is linked to the Sharpeville events in 1960.   This is however not just a day for reflection on what happened in 1960, but also to celebrate our Bill of Rights, in terms of which everyone has a right to life, equality and human dignity – summed up as follows:

 All persons have a right to citizenship and security. Persons and groups are entitled to freedom of assembly, association, belief and opinion, and expression. They have the right to demonstrate, picket and petition; everyone has the right to be free of forced labour, servitude and slavery.
All persons have a right to privacy and to exercise political rights; all have a right to access to information and just administration action. They have rights when arrested, detained and accused, and must have access to courts. Protected rights include a healthy environment; housing, health care, food, water and social security.
All have a right to freedom of movement and residence and of trade, occupation and profession. In the workplace everyone has a right to engage in trade unions and labour movements.
Anyone has the right to purchase property anywhere, and to a basic education.
They have a right to language and culture and communities; and not least, freedom of religion and belief.

The Bill of Rights also specifies the rights of persons belonging to cultural, religious or linguistic communities and the rights of children. In addition, there are specific laws to safeguard women and protect children.  


World Storytelling Day

Today is also world storytelling day – a global celebration of the art of oral storytelling.   The theme for 2015 is “Wishes”.   The message:  Dream big and let everyone know about your plans.   I can’t think of anything nicer than sitting around a dinner table and sharing stories with friends and family.   Happy story telling everyone.   (And yes – we think it’s OK to tell a tall story or two – but why wait for World Storytelling Day.  In fact we think you should tell stories and make wishes, and tell stories about your wishes at every opportunity.)


 

Craft in Clarens:  Just getting better and better

We stopped in at the Martie Lotz hall to see how the crafters were getting on.   I can hardly believe they’ve learnt so much in such a short time.   John and Laurette – here with Ifa Lethu – are certainly inspiring teachers.   Next week the crafters will be concentrating on their business skills.   We are certainly looking forward to seeing these talented artists go from strength to strength – and to see more of their craft on offer in Clarens.

Click here to learn more about Ifa Lethu.


 

Arts Centre at Tshepong in Kgubetswana

Some years ago CCIA (Combined Churches in Action) has erected a beautiful hall on church premises in Kgubetswana. Its main users are the 200 orphans and vulnerable children (OVCs) (Bana ba Hlokang) who every weekday after school receive a nutritious meal. Later in the afternoons a host of educational activities take place in and around the hall.
Because we envisaged it as a place of excellence and expression of love the name TSHEPONG (Place of Hope) is apt, and it stuck. Tshepong also houses the Counselling Centre, and provides the venue for many community activities.
One of our exceptional projects is a Ballet School, but the problem was the lack of proper facilities. Through hard work and generous donations we succeeded to add to the Tshepong complex a new building we call the Arts Centre. Here not only the Centre Ballet School can be housed (in state of the art facilities), but also the Music department, as well as a room for the finer arts. Children can here receive tremendous empowerment through quality development.
On Tuesday 10 March this Arts Centre was officially opened. A large number of guests could share in the wonderful display of the talent of singing and dancing. The attached photos will indicate something of the joyful atmosphere.   (Article by Dons Kritzinger)
Click here to find out more about Combined Churches in Action (CCIA)


 

News from CRA

CRA:  Water Testing –  Recent water testing arranged by the CRA reveals that our water is still safe for drinking.   A further test will be done in approximately two weeks’ time.  Incidentally, the Municipality regularly have the water tested.

Water Supply:  With regard to our water supply, the Reservoirs are now full –the pump station was not fully operational but with the assistance of a CRA Committee Member, the Municipality has fixed numerous problems that have plagued the system.

Street Numbering:  A reminder that you should by now have your new street number displayed on your property for ease of access to Emergency Services.  To correct some misunderstandings:

Stand or Erf numbers do not appear on most GPS systems. In other towns and cities one can input a street number to the GPS and you will be guided to that property.  In the absence of a GPS, a property is found by using the logical street numbers  running sequentially with odd numbers on one side and even numbers on the other. The current difficulty experienced by tourists, visitors, couriers  and most importantly our emergency services where time is crucial, to find a specific property when stand numbers are not sequential has proved to be a major problem over the years in Clarens.  Many will also recall the numerous meetings and discussion regarding the problem of proliferation of non-standard signage to guide visitors to accommodation or business. If all residents, property and business owners do not cooperate by changing to the new municipal street numbering we will soon have even greater confusion for our inhabitants and visitors.  Refer to your municipal rates account to get your correct street number.

Thus it is to your benefit to have your new sequential, logical street number displayed on your property.

Upcoming Event:   There will be a Mayoral Imbizo in Clarens on March 21st  to which all the wards from the various Dihlabeng towns have been invited.  This will be held in the Clarens Stadium and  is the culmination of a series of Imbizo that have been held throughout Dihlabeng since 28 February.

Information supplied by Pat Raubenheimer:  Chairperson, Clarens Ratepayers Association
Phone: 058 256-1123


 

EVENTS

21 March 2015
Clarens Country Market
Cluny Farm Goats Milk products will be on sale tomorrow at the Clarens Country Market and every Saturday thereafter for the duration of the season (summer).  See you from 10 am onwards.


24 March 2015
Blood Drive
Protea Hotel
Step up and donate blood – you could save a life! 

 


21 March 2015
NG Kerk Golf Day22 March 2015
NG Kerk Spitbraai 

 

 

 

 

 


23-26 March 2015
Richard Rennie “Paint With Me” workshop 

 

 

 

 


25 March, 2015
Clarens Garden Club
This month the Clarens Garden Club will be learning all about rosehips – followed by lunch at  The Rose Hip Restaurant. 

 

 


28th March 2015
Clarens Life-Style Cook OffSpecially for Vegans and Vegetarians

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

29th March, 2015
Natalie Chapman at Friends 
Natalie Chapman is a proud ambassador and Board Member of Epic Foundation.  Natalie will be at Friends as part of her 90 Days, 90 Towns, 180 Gigs fundraising tour for Epic Foundation:   Click here to  find out more about her tour. 

 


2-12 April, 2015Stars of Sandstone
A large collection of Heritage items from 2-ft narrow guage locomotives, steam traction engines, vintage agricultural machinery, old cars, aircraft and military vehicles are brought to life during the show. 

 


 

3-6 April, 2015Yvette Art Exhibition: Robert Badenhorst Gallery
An opportunity to view Yvette’s art work and to meet her.   Yvette will be paining outside the gallery during the course of the exhibition. 

 

 

 


3 April, 2015
The Hip Replacements:  Grouse and Claret 

 

 

 

 

 


4 April, 2015
Festival of Dirt   (Enduro bikes)
Enduro World Mountain Madalas Ride
This year’s event will take place at “The Old Mill Drift” . 

 


  4th April, 2015
Flea Market Clarens Square

 

 

 

 


 

11 April, 2015
Clarens Sector Police Forum, Kia and Radio Maluti Golf Day. 

 

 

 

 

 


 

  18-19 April 2015
Ashburton National MTB Series – Clarens
Clarens hosts #3 of the Ashburton National MTB Series: an exciting 7 leg  National marathon mountain biking series spanning 6 South African provinces. 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 


 

Classifieds

Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website, especially if you have property to let.
Browse around – you’re bound to find something of interest.

 

13 March, 2015: The Cosmos are back

The Cosmos are back

Cosmos in Clarens

The Cosmos is back – a sure sign that we are nearing the end of summer.  We trust that everyone has had a lucky Friday 13.   We certainly feel lucky just to be in Clarens


Clarens Caps

Clarens Recycling Centre

Rolf Schlub:  

I have now sold the second 100 Clarens Caps and the proceeds of R 3400,  this time goes to Evon Els from the Clarens Village Conservancy (CVC)Recycling Project.  My thanks go out to Maureen, Dean and Jenny from Maluti Tours and Ronel from Clarens Grocery who have sold the caps in their shops.Evon is a Volunteer CVC Committee member who runs the Clarens Recycling project, collects waste from the town, keeps the place clean with a couple of guys and does this tirelessly always with a smile on her face.  It is therefore that I feel that Evon deserves this recognition and support. I hope that I have made a small contribution to her efforts.

The Clarens Village Conservancy would like to thank Rolf for his support of this very worthy project. Without the tireless efforts and commitment of Evon and her team, we would not have one of the most successful volunteer recycling projects in the Free State. Thanks to the concern and generosity from Rolf, we can keep the team committed and motivated. Rodney Wainwright (for CVC Committee)


TOYOTA OWNERS BE WARNED!

 

Residents and visitors to Clarens should be aware that a criminal syndicate is targeting Toyota vehicles in the Eastern Free State.  Several of these have been stolen in Clarens over the last few weeks and we don’t want yours to be next!  If you own a Toyota or have guests or friends who own one, please ensure that the alarm is properly engaged and that the vehicle is parked safely and securely in the evenings and at night, ideally behind a locked gate or in a lockable garage.

 

The Clarens Community Police Forum is undertaking an initiative to place Warning leaflets under the windscreen wipers of every Toyota which enters Clarens, via the good hands of the Police Forum’s Reservists.  In the event that your vehicle is tampered with or stolen, or you see another Toyota being broken into, please report the attempted theft or theft to SAPS on 058 256 6000/6001/6002.  Alternatively, call the Duty Officer on 082 4668904.

 

Clarens has a well-deserved reputation as one of the safest towns in South Africa.  Please be vigilant and share in the task of keeping Clarens crime-free and the safest destination in the country!

Please note – the thieves concerned are a well-organized crime syndicate which is operating throughout the Free State.   Both the local and provincial police are doing everything they can to put a stop to this.   Sadly, Clarens is not immune to this type of criminal activity.


 

Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Kniphofia thodei baker

Damien Coulson

Article and photography by
Damien Coulson
Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve<

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. This week we’re focusing on a member of the Asphodelaceae (Red-hot Poker) family.

Kniphofia thodei Baker (Thode’s Poker in English and Leloele in Sesotho) is perennial monocotyledonous herb growing to a towering height of just 500mm. Unlike many other species of the Red-hot Poker genus, this little guy enjoys a bachelor’s solitary existence including freedom from group tyranny and peer-pressure. One will need to prepare a backpack to find our hero as he prefers “hanging-out” on moist high-altitude grassveld mountain slopes at up to 2750 m A.S.L. He is also an endemic to the Eastern Mountain Region (EMR), making him even more interesting…and don’t all bachelor’s lead interesting lifestyles?

Photographed on the steep slopes near Titanic Rock and our Sky-Contour Trail, this individual was no easy find (as is any decent bachelor) and may at first glance be misidentified for several of the more prominent of the Red-hot Poker genus in the area.   Read more


 

Dihlabeng Christian School

Dihlabeng Christian SchoolAutumn Fair It’s the Dihlabeng Christian School Autumn Fair this Thursday, and as you can see from the poster – there will be a lot on offer.

Click here To find out more about the School.

And while you’re on the web, have a look at their facebook page  .   As you can see from the photos below they’ve been having lots of fun – and I’m sure they’re all learning a huge amount in the process.

Dihlabeng Christian School

 

Dihlabeng Christian School

Dihlabeng Christian School


Looking for the laundry?

The Clarens Laundry room has moved too the back of the old Cranford Inn parking area in Larola.

Phone: Yolndi Storbeck: 082 855 3473


EVENTS:

Clarens-Country-Market1618453_361809250627472_967076778_n-300x225 14 March 2015

Clarens Country Market

Cluny Farm Goats Milk products will be on sale tomorrow at the Clarens Country Market and every Saturday thereafter for the duration of the season (summer) Feta. Cream Cheese and Plain Yoghurt will arrive tomorrow. See you from 10 am onwards 


Maluti antique

14 March 2015

Legends of Yesteryear

Maluti Auto Club

Bethlehem Showgrounds


Simon Silcock

15 March 2015

Garden Picnic Party

at Millpond House

This will be a good time to catch up with other Clarens residents.   (I think everyone is going to be there.)

 


BLOOD DRIVE 16 March 2015

Blood Drive

Protea Hotel

Step up and donate blood – you could save a life!

 


Dihlabeng School fair

19th March, 2015

Dihlabeng Christian School Autumn Fair

 

 

 

 


NG Kerk

21 March 2015

NG Kerk Golf Day

22 March 2015

NG Kerk Spitbraai

 

 


 Richard Rennie 82

23-26 March 2015

Richard Rennie “Paint With Me” workshop

 

 


the-rose-house

25 March, 2015

Clarens Garden Club

This month the Clarens Garden Club will be learning all about rosehips – followed by lunch at  The Rose Hip Restuarant.

 

 


CLARENS COOK-OFF

28th March 2015

Clarens Life-Style Cook Off

Specially for Vegans and Vegetarians

 

 

 


Natalie Chapman

29th March, 2015

Natalie Chapman at Friends 

Natalie Chapman is a proud ambassador and Board Member of Epic Foundation.  Natalie will be at Friends as part of her 90 Days, 90 Towns, 180 Gigs fundraising tour for Epic Foundation:   Click here to  find out more about her tour.


 stars of sandstone 2015 flyer_img_6

2-12 April, 2015

Stars of Sandstone

A large collection of Heritage items from 2-ft narrow guage locomotives, steam traction engines, vintage agricultural machinery, old cars, aircraft and military vehicles are brought to life during the show. 

 


 

11042139_796498040444451_1127698783_n

3-6 April, 2015

Yvette Art Exhibition: Robert Badenhorst Gallery

An opportunity to view Yvette’s art work and to meet her.   Yvette will be paining outside the gallery during the course of the exhibition.

 


 

Hip Replacements

3 April, 2015

The Hip Replacements:  Grouse and Claret

 

 

 

 

 


 

Festival of Dirt

4 April, 2015

Festival of Dirt   (Enduro bikes)

Enduro World Mountain Madalas Ride

This year’s event will take place at “The Old Mill Drift”

 


 

Clarens Square IMG_0002

4th April, 2015

Flea Market

Clarens Square

 

 

 


SPF golf day

11 April, 2015

Clarens Sector Police Forum, Kia and Radio Maluti Golf Day.


 

Ashburton MTB

18-19 April 2015

Ashburton National MTB Series – Clarens

Clarens hosts #3 of the Ashburton National MTB Series: an exciting 7 leg  National marathon mountain biking series spanning 6 South African provinces.

 

 


Classifieds

Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website, especially if you have property to let. 

Browse around – you’re bound to find something of interest.

 

Kniphofia thodei Baker

 

 

Kniphofia thodei Baker Kniphofia thodei Baker

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. This week we’re focusing on a member of the Asphodelaceae (Red-hot Poker) family.

Kniphofia thodei Baker (Thode’s Poker in English and Leloele in Sesotho) is perennial monocotyledonous herb growing to a towering height of just 500mm. Unlike many other species of the Red-hot Poker genus, this little guy enjoys a bachelor’s solitary existence including freedom from group tyranny and peer-pressure. One will need to prepare a backpack to find our hero as he prefers “hanging-out” on moist high-altitude grassveld mountain slopes at up to 2750 m A.S.L. He is also an endemic to the Eastern Mountain Region (EMR), making him even more interesting…and don’t all bachelor’s lead interesting lifestyles?

Photographed on the steep slopes near Titanic Rock and our Sky-Contour Trail, this individual was no easy find (as is any decent bachelor) and may at first glance be misidentified for several of the more prominent of the Red-hot Poker genus in the area.

The leaves are narrow, recurved, around 5 mm wide by 300-400mm long, blue-green, soft to the touch, with slightly coarse or toothed margins. The inflorescence consists of a single dense spike of tubular and hanging measuring approx. 70X40mm, grading from orange apically, to yellow-white below. Flowers measure a mere 20-30mm in length. Flowering occurs from spring-early summer (November to March). Uses:

Gardening

This solitary Poker would make for a highly attractive garden ornamental, especially in areas of partial shade with moist, well drained soils. Red-hot Pokers hybridise readily with wild specimens, making Id in gardens particularly difficult.

Conservation Status

The SANBI conservation status for K. thodei is listed as of Least Concern.

 

Click here for more information on plants in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Click here for more information on the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

5th March, 2015: It’s all happening in Clarens

The Clarens Craft Beer Festival

The Clarens Craft Beer Festival

Come rain or shine – the Clarens Craft Beer Festival just seems to get better and better.  This well-organised event has become recognized as probably the best craft beer festival in South Africa. What, you may ask makes this festival so special.   Well, for a start, all the breweries represented at this festival have their brewers on-hand to talk about their craft.   And, probably equally important, access is limited to ticket holders so that everyone can enjoy the space without being swamped by hordes of people.   Then there’s also excellent food and good music all set in what must be one of the prettiest villages in the country.   What more could you ask for. 

Have a look at the Clarens Craft Beer Festival facebook page:  loads of photographs and interesting news snippets.


Clarens is Art

Clarens is Art

Clarens is lucky enough to have young entrepreneurial artists continually creating a great vibe and excitement around the art-scene. Ism-Skism certainly added to the atmosphere over the beer fest weekend painting up a storm at the On The Square Centre.   On your next visit to Clarens be sure to pick up a map of the Art Route  you’re bound to find something to your taste at one of the many galleries in town.   You should also take a look at the Galleries page on the Clarens News website:   http://clarensnews.co.za/listings-category/art/galleries/


Ifu Lethu in Clarens – nurturing the creative spirit

Ifa Lethu

 IfaLethuMG_0014

Ifu Lethu are still here in Clarens working with 60 young artists and crafters from Clarens, Phuthathitjaba, Bethlehem, and Fouriesburg.  

Clarens News stopped in at the Martie Lotz hall to see how they were getting on, and found everyone hard at work.   Ifa Lethu will be in Clarens for another two weeks and we can’t wait to see the results of all the training, advice, and encouragement being given to the local artists and crafters.  

Click here to find out more


Attention all Toyota owners

Your car is in demand!   A Toyota was stolen from outside a guesthouse in Clarens last weekend, and there was also an attempt to steal a second Toyota.   It seems that the Toyota thieves are back in Clarens.   If you have a Toyota please ensure that it is properly secured and in a safe place.   Guest house owners should also warn their guests, and do everything possible to ensure that these thieves don’t get away with another one.


Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Crinum

 

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by

Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts.  This week we’re focusing on a member of theAmaryllidceae (Bulbous lily) family.

Crinum bulbispermum (Orange-River Lily in English, Vleilelie in Afrikaans and Lelutla in Sesotho) is a perennial bulb of up to 900mm tall, usually observed at moderate altitudes of 1600 m A.S.L. in damp areas such as wetlands and streams. This plant occurs from the Western Cape – Limpopo. Crinum has its origins in the Latin Krinon – Lily, whilst bulbispermum means “bulblike seed” or “bulbous seed”.   Read more


Garth Lezard in Clarens 

Garth Lezard

Garth Lezard is a Global Endurance Humanitarian Adventurer, who passed through Clarens a few days ago (March 3rd) on day two of his mammoth journey which will combine motorcycling and running/trekking through 24 countries and 6 continents.   

My passion for global travel, endurance sports, photojournalism and Leonard Cheshire Disability Homes has lead to many adventures which I have documented over the years.My official capacity as a public figure was confirmed when I was voted in at the Annual General Meeting of the Queensburgh Cheshire Home, as ambassador for the charity in 2012.Prior to this my role was focused more on raising awareness and not on fundraising.I now use my Global Endurance Humanitarian Adventures to raise both awareness and funds for the charity.

We’ve been following him on twitter – and see that he has already made the Botswana border !   Garth told us that he intends to come back to Clarens at the end of his journey – which he thinks will be in about three year’s time.

Bon Voyage Garth.

Click here To find out more about Garth


Looking for the laundry?

The Clarens Laundry room has moved too the back of the old Cranford Inn parking area in Larola.

Phone: Yolndi Storbeck: 082 855 3473


EVENTS:

Clarens-Country-Market1618453_361809250627472_967076778_n-300x225

7 March 2015

Clarens Country Market

Cluny Farm Goats Milk products will be on sale tomorrow at the Clarens Country Market and every Saturday thereafter for the duration of the season (summer) Feta. Cream Cheese and Plain Yoghurt will arrive tomorrow. See you from 10 am onwards 

image001

7th March 2015

Surrender Hill Marathon

For further details visit the Bethlehem Marathonklub website

 

BACHARACH

9th March 2015

Burt Bacharach with Cat and Simon

What the World Needs Now, Say a Little Prayer, Do you know the way to San Jose……….

Gostos Restaurant will be serving cheese boards, pate and stunning desserts.

Arts Centre

10th March 2015

Official opening of Art’s Centre pf Tshepong

Centre Ballet School, Bana ba Hlokang choir, products of the children’s Art School.   The event will be combined with the (short) AGM of CCIA.

Maluti antique

14 March 2015

Legends of Yesteryear

Maluti Auto Club

Bethlehem Showgrounds

Simon Silcock

15 March 2015

Garden Picnic Party

at Millpond House

BLOOD DRIVE

16 March 2015

Blood Drive

Protea Hotel

Step up and donate blood – you could save a life!

NG Kerk

21 March 2015

NG Kerk Golf Day

22 March 2015

NG Kerk Spitbraai

23-26 March 2015

Richard Rennie 82

23-26 March 2015

Richard Rennie “Paint With Me” workshop

CLARENS COOK-OFF

28th March 2015

Clarens Life-Style Cook Off

Specially for Vegans and Vegetarians

Natalie Chapman

29th March, 2015

Natalie Chapman at Friends

Classifieds

Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website. If you’re going to Johannesburg on Sunday, David Groenwalt is looking for a lift.   And there are some gorgeous dogs looking for a forever home – as they say:  who ever said that diamonds are a girl’s best friend has never owned a dog.  Go on……take a look, you’re bound to fall in love.

 

Crinum bulbispermum

CrinumGreetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts.  This week we’re focusing on a member of the Amaryllidceae (Bulbous lily) family.

Crinum bulbispermum (Orange-River Lily in English, Vleilelie in Afrikaans and Lelutla in Sesotho) is a perennial bulb of up to 900mm tall, usually observed at moderate altitudes of 1600 m A.S.L. in damp areas such as wetlands and streams. This plant occurs from the Western Cape – Limpopo. Crinum has its origins in the Latin Krinon – Lily, whilst bulbispermum means “bulblike seed” or “bulbous seed”.

Photographed in close proximity to our Spruit hiking trail, this lily is unmistakable and beautiful to behold. Closer inspection of the flowers yielded a faint yet pleasantly sweet scent. Sometimes confused with the River-Lily Crinum macowanii, they can be told apart by looking at their anthers. Those of C. macowanii are black whilst those of C. bulbispermum are not.

The leaves of C. bulbispermum are long (appr. 450X40mm), flexible, gracefully arched and basally sheathed. The inflorescence is born on a stem of height almost equal to leave length. The flowers are tubular and narrow to a stalk of 110mm in length. The tepals measure 100X30mm. When viewed as a whole the flowers appear wilted. The flowers are white to off-pink with a pink-red keel. The fruit are 70mm in diameter and tipped by a ring-like structure. Flowering occurs from spring-early summer (September to December).

 

Uses:

Gardening

This moderately sized herbaceous bulb would make for a highly attractive garden ornamental, especially in areas of partial shade with rich moist soils. It is a fast growing and relatively resilient plant that grows readily from seed.

Traditional uses

The bulb is used medicinally to treat a wide assortment of ailments including colds, rheumatism, varicose veins, is said to reduce swelling and is used in the treatment of septic sores. It is also used during the delivery of babies and reportedly stimulates breast milk. The Sesotho believe that it can be used as lucky charm protecting against evil entering into their homes.

Conservation Status

The SANBI conservation status for C. bulbispermum is listed as Declining. This plant is threatened by development, but most notably through uncontrolled over harvesting for medicinal purposes.

Click here to find out more about the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Click here to read more articles on the Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Disa porrecta

 

 

Disa porrecta Clarens Village Nature Reserve
Photo: D. Coulson
Disa porrecta  Clarens Village Nature Reserve
Photo: D. Coulson
Disa porrecta. Clarens Village Nature Reserve
Photo: D Coulson

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’re focusing on a member of the Orchidaceae (Orchid) family.

Disa porrecta (lekholela in Sesotho) is a perennial epiphyte of between 200-600mm tall, usually observed at higher altitudes of up to 2000 m A.S.L. in damp grasslands from the EC – the FS. Disa or dis means 2, in possible reference to the style wings, or alternatively dis meaning rich[ly coloured] referring to the bright orange-red flowers of the genus. Porrectus means to lean forward or outwards.

This little guy appears on first sighting to resemble one of the members of the Asphodelaceae (red-hot poker) family in the process of dying-back, but on closer inspection characteristics unique to the genus become obvious. Seen on our Titanic Trail, the specimen pictured below seems to prefer areas with half day sun in close proximity to cliff-faces where the moisture content of the grassland is higher.

The leaves of D. porrecta are long and slender (300X1mm) and on casual inspection resemble a blade of grass. The inflorescence is a dense corymb with the flowers facing down. Colour ranges from a vivid pink-red to orange-red with yellow petals and lip. The sepals converge to a thin tip of around 3mm in length. A large spur is present on each flower measuring 20-40mm long and is upwards pointing. Flowering occurs from Jan-March. Uses:

Gardening

Would make for an attractive garden ornamental in summer, but care must be taken to avoid full-day sunlight and planting should take placein moist, shallow soils.

Conservation Status

The SANBI conservation status for D. porrecta is listed as Least Concern.

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

 

Click here to read other articles on The Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

30 January 2015

Damien's photo

Sunshine piercing through the veils of darkness

A majestic sun tries to pierce its way through the veils of darkness. Captured shortly after sunrise on the Fouriesburg road into Clarens. The dark purple and undulating mountains contrast starkly with the brilliant golden rays of the rising morning sun.

Clarens has talent!   The photograph and text above was sent in by Damien Coulson (head ranger for The Clarens Village Nature Reserve.)   And – just in case you think this is just a flash in the pan (no photographic pun intended) he also sent in the following:

A hot-air balloon rises from the Golf Estate and drifts languidly on the light early morning breeze towards the Naauwpoort Neck. It moves silently and majestically with the occasional sound of gas billowing in short bursts from the burner from as far as 600 m away.
Thank you for sharing with us Damien.

Of course we all know that Clarens provides inspiration for many talented artists, writers, poets, photographers, cooks, designers  ….. oh the list goes on and on.  We’re also lucky enough to have one of the best book shops in the country, run by Debra Stewart who also manages the Bibliophile Writers’ Support and Social Club: A network of established and aspiring writers,storytellers, scribes and scribblers who inspire and support one another’s creative endeavours in a convivial environment.  Click here to find out more about Bibliophile


Curbing Crime in Clarens with the Sector Police Forum

Have you ever wondered, by way of a rhetorical question, why Clarens is comparatively crime free? To start with, look at the evidence. In December 2014/January 2015, only two crimes in Upper Clarens were brought to the attention of the Clarens SAPS: An attempted housebreaking in Collet Street and an unreported bicycle theft from the Clarens Backpackers. In a situation where close to 5000 visitors per day were strolling the streets of the village, climbing its conservancy trails or rafting its white waters, this is simply extraordinary.

Granted, there was also a partially successful SAPS drug-bust at a Clarens watering hole in early January 2015; neither do these statistics take account of the situation in Kgubetswana. That said, for a tourist town on the Lesotho border, in an economic downturn, it is remarkable compared with the situation one year before: Over Christmas 2013 and New Year 2014, Clarens recorded 12 break-ins, drunk driving, domestic violence and incidences of violent confrontations in various nightclubs.

Why the decline? One key reason is the presence on the Clarens streets of the Sector Police Forum (SPF) patrols (Kgali, Phillip and Patricia) as well as Stephen Vorster on mobile patrol with his mountainous dog, Fifi. This presence, part of the SAPS three-tier crime prevention structure, has contributed in no small measure to a community-led response to crime and its early prevention. The drug-bust referred to above was carried out on the strength of SPF intelligence, for example. With limited exceptions, the lack of vagrants on the Clarens Square is due to SPF vigilance and gentle persuasion. In short, this presence on the ground provides the eyes and ears so critical to early warning and detection of crime, from whatever source.   Read more


Feature Film:  The Jakes are Missing

The final scene of the movie is to be shot on the square this Sunday – and everyone’s invited to join in the fun.   It is however going to be a long day, so it’s suggested that you either pitch at 8am and be prepared to hang around until 3pm or come at 3pm and stay until 11pm.   This is your chance to be in the movies.


Click here To read more about the movie – and to see who’s starring in the movie (apart from you of course)


The Clarens Ultimate Frisbee team

Chris Pefanis, a self-confessed Frisbee fanatic, together with Graham Rodin is keen to develop aClarens Ultimate Frisbee team.  Chris has been in touch with a Pretoria team – The Labradors – who are planning to visit Clarens 13-15 March. They are willing to help us learn the rules and throwing techniques of the game that weekend.

If you’re interested, inbox Chris  (www.facebook.com/chris.pefanis) with your contact number and let’s get playing!


Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve


Agapanthurs campanulatus 2
DamienArticle and photography by
Damien Coulson
Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’re focusing on a member of the Agapanthaceae (Agapanthus) family.   Agapanthus companulatus subsp. paten (Bell Agapanthus in English, Bloulelie in Afrikaans & Lera-laphou in Sesotho) is a deciduous perennial herb which may grow to 100mm tall. This species prefers moist rocky areas such as waterways and drainage lines, near valley bottoms and rocky slopes. A mid-high altitude species, it is commonly found growing at the 1800-2400m A.S.L. band. A. companulatussubsp. paten is found occurring in the Eastern Mountain Region (EMR) of the Drakensburg in montane grassland through to Mpum, the Eastern Free State and Gauteng.       Read more


Paballo’s Nursing Care: New Hours etc for 2015

Hours for Nursing Rooms
Monday           09h00-15h00
Tuesday          09h00-15h00
Wednesday     CLOSED
Thursday         09h00-15h00
Friday              09h00-15h00
Saturday         09h00-13h00
Sunday            On call

On call for Emergencies every day until 22h00 (after this time, the nurses’ need to be available for the elderly folk with whom they live).
After 22h00 telephonic advice will be given.
Or – Telephone Hoogland Medi Clinic (058 307 2424) emergency ward} (private patients)
Or – Telephone Dihlabeng Hospital (058 303 1000) (government patients)
Or – Telephone Ambulance Services:
ER 24                                      086 108 4124
Netcare 911                            079 146 9144
Government Ambulance         058 303 1226
Click here for more about Paballo’s Nursing Care
Click here for other important telephone numbers


Radio Maluti

Clarens is featured on Maluti Radio’s Hoezit program with Garth Brook from 09h00 every Saturday  Be sure to tune in.

 

 

 


EVENTS

Clarens Country Market1618453_361809250627472_967076778_n Clarens Country Market

Cluny Farm Goats Milk products will be on sale tomorrow at the Clarens Country Market and every Saturday thereafter for the duration of the season (summer) Feta. Cream Cheese and Plain Yoghurt will arrive tomorrow. See you from 10 am onwards 

31 January 2015
Shades of Broadway at Bon Appetit
6-8 February, 2015
Annual Birding Weekend at Golden Gate
7th February, 2015
Book launch:   “Woord-engel” by Azette Wiesner. 
(With songs on the Woord-engel CD  performend by Jeanette Jacobs, a local singer, and the Clarens Vintage men’s choir with René Human.)
13-15 February, 2015
Love Rosendal Festival
13-15 February, 2015
H.O.G. Valentine’s Rally
SPF will host the Harley Owners Group, or HOGS, as they are better known.  This event will be hosted off the Square, on Market Street West, and include live music until 11:00pm; there will be no road closures, parking on Church Street and ablutions facilities will be brought into Clarens.  Arguably most importantly, all the drinks involved will be locally-purchased, adding some weight to the local economy.  All proceeds of this weekend will go to the SPF.
19-22 February 2015
Bieliemielie Fees
23-26 February 2015
Richard Rennie “Paint with me” workshop
27-28 February 2015
Clarens Craft Beer Festival
28th February 2015
Cansa Shavathon

Classifieds

Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website – especially if you’re looking for space or a flat to rent.   There’s also a new employment opportunity this week.

Agapanthus campanulatus

Agapanthus campanulatus
Agapanthus companulatus (Photo: D Coulson)
Agapanthus companulatus
Agapanthus campanulatus (Photo: D.Coulson)

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’re focusing on a member of the Agapanthaceae (Agapanthus) family.

Agapanthus companulatus subsp. paten (Bell Agapanthus in English, Bloulelie in Afrikaans & Lera-laphou in Sesotho) is a deciduous perennial herb which may grow to 100mm tall. This species prefers moist rocky areas such as waterways and drainage lines, near valley bottoms and rocky slopes. A mid-high altitude species, it is commonly found growing at the 1800-2400m A.S.L. band. A. companulatus subsp. paten is found occurring in the Eastern Mountain Region (EMR) of the Drakensburg in montane grassland through to Mpum, the Eastern Free State and Gauteng.

The derivatives agapé – love and anthos – flower, hint at the attractive nature of this particular wildflower. A conspicuous plant, it’s almost always found in colonies and it is hard to confuse the sky-blues and characteristic long, slender, bell-shape with other wildflowers. This particular specimen was found growing along the Titanic Trail and again along the Spruit (always in close proximity to water). This plant contrasts nicely with the various shades of green vegetation amongst which it grows, and is large enough to photograph without having to first get dirt on your elbows and knees…

The leaves of A. companulatus subsp. paten are long and slender (150-400mmX10-25mm) and dark green-grey grading to a red-purple colour towards the base of the stem. The umbel inflorescence is characteristic for this plant and the florets are wide-open to slightly reflexed. Each floret comprises 6 light-blue to purple tipped petals (approx. 35mm X 10mm) with a dark blue vertical mid-stripe and 6 stamens. The floret tube is shorter than the lobes by 1/3, with each floret borne on its own stalk and supported by a long, slender stem. Flowering occurs from Jan-March. Uses:

Ecological role

The flowers of this plant attract a host of pollinators such as bees whilst the seeds are wind-dispersed.

Traditional Uses

New-born Sesotho babes are bathed in a cooled infusion of the leaves to strengthen them against the elements. A soothing baby-lotion is also made from the rootstock to treat “cradle cap” (a dermatological condition of the head, unique to infants). It’s also been reportedly used as a lucky charm against lightning.

Gardening

This is amongst the most popular and sought-after of garden ornamental species and is great at growing from cuttings. Many of the gardens in Clarens have these growing where the soil is moist.

 

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

 

Click here to read other articles on The Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

 

 

Paballo’s Nursing New Working Hours

26 January 2015

DETAILS OF NEW WORKING HOURS ETC. FOR 2015

Dear Community Members,

Hours for Nursing Rooms

Monday           09h00-15h00

Tuesday          09h00-15h00

Wednesday     CLOSED

Thursday         09h00-15h00

Friday              09h00-15h00

Saturday         09h00-13h00

Sunday            On call

 

On call for Emergencies every day until 22h00 (after this time, the nurses’ need to be available for the elderly folk with whom they live).

After 22h00 telephonic advice will be given.

Or – Telephone Hoogland Medi Clinic (058 307 2424) emergency ward} (private patients)

Or – Telephone Dihlabeng Hospital (058 303 1000) (government patients)

Or – Telephone Ambulance Services:

ER 24                                       086 108 4124

Netcare 911                             079 146 9144

Government Ambulance      058 303 1226

We also have to inform you that our prices have increased as from 1 January 2015. Please note that this is our first increase since 2011. A list of price increases is posted in the nurses’ rooms and on the community notice board.

Thank you all for your support.

Kind regards,

Dawn Wainwright

Trustee/Secretary – Paballo’s Nursing Care @ Clarens

17 January 2015

Mount Horeb, Clarens

Mount Horeb

As I wake up to the music of the birds early on a warm summers day
When I open my window
There is sunshine in my eyes
I close my eyes and when I open them again I can see you in a distance smiling proudly back at me.
You stand bravely not afraid to express your beauty
From place to place
From town to town
There are others,but none Can be compared to you.
Your beauty is like that of A precious pearl

Poem by Nthabiseng Constance Nyefolo
First published on the Bibliophile Writers Support and Social Club website page

The Bibiliophile Writers Support and Social club is a of established and aspiring writers, storytellers, scribes and scribblers who inspire and support one another’s creative endeavours in a convivial environment.   For more information please contact Debra at Bibliophile: 058 256 1692


More news on the literary front:

31 degrees eastLocal author Don Emby’s new book 31 Degrees East, is now available as a digital download from Amazon. As a promotion, Don has arranged for downloads to be free from Monday 19 Jan to Friday 23 January, and says that any feed-back would be very welcome.

Resume:
Even if the current global campaign against the barbaric practice of female genital mutilation (FGM) continues at its current level of success, it will take 60 years until the total of more than 125 million women and girls now affected, is reduced by half.
Excerpt from a statement by Navi Pillay, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights; and former High Court Judge.

Four young, newly qualified doctors, set out on a celebratory safari to visit the spectacular Murchison Falls in Uganda. On a lone night drive one of the doctors discovers the body of a young girl lying in the middle of a disused track in the Murchison Falls National Park.  Read more


The As(h) River

CLARENS   NEWS received an the following interesting letter from Pieter Olivier in response to our article “Tight lines on the Ash River” published in last week’s newsletter.   It seems that our reference to the Ash river is totally incorrect.  Pieter wrote as follows:

The only historic reference to the naming of the As (Axle) River which I know of, is the following from the “Bethlehem 125” history book by the late A P J van Rensburg (1989) : Page 10 : “ Vanaf Uys-se-Kuile is Retief se trek oor die suidelike gedeelte van die plaas Smalfontein (tans Bonnington, die plaas van mnr. F S liebowitz), oor die rand van die plase Poortjie en Trekpad en deur die Asrivier – so genoem omdat die as van ‘n wa hier gebreek het en hoogs waarskynlik die drif geblokkeer het en so die trek vertraag het. Hiervandaan het die Voortrekkers Klipnek deurgegaan en op die middag van 23 September 1837 in die Liebenbergskloof, vandag Liebenbergsvlei, uitgespan.”

The Liebenbergsvlei River and the Axle River come together in the Saulspoort Dam (now called the Sol Plaatje Dam to commemorate the 51 residents from the Sol Plaatje Municipality – Kimberley – who drowned there in on 1 May2003. The Axle River carries the water from the Lesotho Highlands Water Project to the Wilger River and onwards to the Vaal Dam. The Bethlehem dam is the first municipal storage dam in South Africa to receive the high quality water via the Project.

I did try two or three years ago to convince SANRAL to rectify the matter at the river crossings but to no avail. The other gross fault is the big signboard near Clarens indicating the “ Ash River Outfall” (!!!). Greetings, Pieter


Annual Birding Weekend in Golden Gate Highlands National Park 

Registrations are now open for birders to participate in the Sasol Golden Gate annual birding weekend which takes place from 6th-8th February 2015. This event organised by the Free State Region of the Honorary Rangers, raises funds for SANParks conservation projects within Golden Gate Highlands National Park. 

The Golden Gate Vulture Hide was partly funded by previous birding events and provides birders the opportunity to spot the rare bearded vulture.   Read more


CVC Report Back:  December 2014

CVC Dec 2014 header

 

Damien Coulson has sent in another one of his interesting reports on the work being done in  the Clarens Village Nature Reserve.   Highlights in the December report back include news on a new trail specially for cyclists.   The trail is not complete yet, but work is well underway and the trail will be completed well before the MTN cycle race in April.   Click here to read Damien’s full report.


EVENTS:

Clarens Country Market 17 January 2015
Clarens Country Market
Burns night 24 January, 2015
Burns Night at Coutryard Restaurant
26 January, 2015:   Klopse Friendship Club Meeting
6-8 February, 2015
Annual Birding Weekend at Golden Gate
Shades of Broadway 31 January 2015
Shades of Broadway at Bon Appetit
Woord engel Azette Wiesner 7th February, 2015Book launch:   “Woord-engel” by Azette Wiesner. (With songs on the Woord-engel CD  performend by Jeanette Jacobs, a local singer, and the Clarens Vintage men’s choir with René Human.)

 

Love Rosendal 13-15 February, 2015Love Rosendal Festival

Bieliemielie 2015 19-22 February 2015

27-28 February 2014
Clarens Craft Beer Festival


Classifieds

Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website – espcially if you’re looking for a flat to rent.

9th January, 2015

The “week” that was

Chirstmas has come and gone we are now in 2015 and  I’m sure that most of us have already forgotten those New Year’s Resolutions.    Traditionally, this is however, a time to reflect on what we’ve achieved and to set our goals for the year ahead.   A thought that immediately springs to mind, is that we live in a fabulous place and one of the reasons why Clarens is so special is that we are lucky enough to have so many wonderful community organisations and generous individuals who are prepared to give of their time and resources to ensure that our village just keeps on getting better and better.   Please have a look at the Community Page on our website:   You too, may be able to make a positive contribution.


 

The Twitcher returns

Yes indeed.  Can’t keep a good man down, as the actress said to the Bishop.  The Twitcher is back to enlighten and entertain, and in some rare cases, abuse.  But no-one in our fair village of course.  It seems like an age since we last talked; well, you listened possibly while I rabbited on.  After a spell in a Siberian prison for a small, perhaps even insignificant demonstration in Red Square, in support of the Bolshoi Ballet’s cake sale, I came to understand that the key to the meaning of life is in fact Cricket.  Yes, nothing like a set of rusty prison bars to focus the mind and all mine could conjure was the sight of Dale Steyn, thundering down the pitch to decimate an innocuous Australian, flailing his bat helplessly at the oncoming bouncer.  The rest is history of course.  Our own thugs at the top of the heap, verbally abusing the rest.  Glorious game, cricket.

Which brings me to the subject of this return to Clarens News.  In short, the need to share a cricketing highlight from the glorious annals of this noble sport on our own oblong, er, square.  I quote verbatim from a missive recently to hand from a foreign Sporting and Hunting Correspondent, RW ‘Belcher’Agar:  Read more


 

It’s all about Trout

A recent article on the CNN website:  African sushi:  Mountainous fish farm links Lesotho with Japanese chefs     http://edition.cnn.com/2014/11/21/business/lesotho-trout-for-japan/   highlights the trade in trout from Katse Dam to Japan.   Have a look – it makes for an interesting read for anyone living in or visiting Clarens, since Clarens played an important role in the construction of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project.   This project has featured in quite a few articles which were written for our newsletter and which appear on the Clarens News Website:

Launch of Lesotho Highlands Water Project- Phase 2  (Clarens News: May 2014.  Article by Mary Walker)
Lesotho Highlands Water Project – Phase 2  (Clarens News: March 2014. Article by Mary Walker with  historical insight into building of Phase 1)
Water – Lesotho Highlands Water Project (Clarens News: September 2013.  Background on the Lesotho Highlands Water Project, with reference to the impact of this project on Clarens)
Self Drive – Ash River Outfall Drive  (Clarens News: April 2014) Map and information.
Self drive: Clarens to Katse Dam  (Clarens News: March 2014.) Article by Rod and Rose Smart on their Katse experience – with tips on driving in Lesotho.)
Katse Dam  (General information on Katse Dam, Tours to Katse Dam from Clarens, and the Katse Botanical Gardens.)


 

Tight lines on the Ash River


(Photograph:  Clarens Fishing)

A subject seldom touched on (but featured in the WildFly Fishing Series on Supersport) is the excellent trout fishing to be had in the Ash river just below the Ash River Outfall.   It seems that trout in our local rivers has become a bit of an environmental hot potato, with purists arguing that they do not belong in our rivers where they impact on the local indigenous fish population, and pragmatists that argue that the benefits of having trout in our rivers far outweighs the damage that these fish may cause.   Whatever your beliefs, the fact remains that we have a thriving trout population in the Ash river which provides almost perfect conditions for trout – and these fish are not only thriving, but also breeding in the river.   So much so, that the Ash river is now considered by many to provide the best trout fishing in South Africa, and Clarens is attracting fly-fishing enthusiasts from far and wide.
For more information on Fishing in the Clarens area – visit the Clarens News website page on Fishing:  http://clarensnews.co.za/fishing/  


 

Annual Birding Weekend in Golden Gate Highlands National Park 

Registrations are now open for birders to participate in the Sasol Golden Gate annual birding weekend which takes place from 6th-8th February 2015. This event organised by the Free State Region of the Honorary Rangers, raises funds for SANParks conservation projects within Golden Gate Highlands National Park. 

The Golden Gate Vulture Hide was partly funded by previous birding events and provides birders the opportunity to spot the rare bearded vulture.   Read more

Please note that registration for this event closes next friday: 16th January, 2015


 

Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Article and photograph by Damien Coulson

Head ranger
Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’re focusing on a member of the Lamiaceae (Sage and mint) family.

Ajuga ophrydis (Bugle Plant in English & Senyarela in Sesotho) is a perennial herb which may grow to 250mm tall. This remarkable yet understated herb grows sparcely distributed in rocky grassland areas, in close proximity to rocky slopes at higher altitudes up to 2700 m A.S.L, occurring from the Eastern Cape through to Mpum.

An altogether attractive plant, this specimen was observed above the Porcupine Trail, along what will soon be our new cycle route – the Caracal Contour. Interestingly this specimen and several new wildflowers were only observed in the area in which cattle have been excluded and in which an intact portion of fence remains, and is evidence of the need to conserve our natural heritage. As a matter of interest, this is the only member of the Ajuga genus which has been recorded in S.A.

Click here to read more


 

EVENTS:

10 January 2014
Clarens Country Market
24 January, 2015
Burns Night at Coutryard Restaurant
26 January, 2015:   Klopse Friendship Club Meeting
6-8 February, 2015
Annual Birding Weekend at Golden Gate
31 January 2015
Shades of Broadway at Bon Appetit 
Azette Wiesner 7th February, 2015

Book launch:   “Woord-engel” by Azette Wiesner. 

(With songs on the Woord-engel CD  performend by Jeanette Jacobs, a local singer, and the Clarens Vintage men’s choir with René Human.)

 

13-15 February, 2015Love Rosendal Festival


Classifieds

Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website – espcially if you’re looking for a flat to rent.

9 January 2015: The Twitcher is Back

The Twitcher is Back!!! Yes indeed. Can’t keep a good man down, as the actress said to the Bishop. The Twitcher is back to enlighten and entertain, and in some rare cases, abuse. But no-one in our fair village of course.

It seems like an age since we last talked; well, you listened possibly while I rabbited on. After a spell in a Siberian prison for a small, perhaps even insignificant demonstration in Red Square, in support of the Bolshoi Ballet’s cake sale, I came to understand that the key to the meaning of life is in fact Cricket. Yes, nothing like a set of rusty prison bars to focus the mind and all mine could conjure was the sight of Dale Steyn, thundering down the pitch to decimate an innocuous Australian, flailing his bat helplessly at the oncoming bouncer. The rest is history of course. Our own thugs at the top of the heap, verbally abusing the rest. Glorious game, cricket.

Which brings me to the subject of this return to Clarens News. In short, the need to share a cricketing highlight from the glorious annals of this noble sport on our own oblong, er, square. I quote verbatim from a missive recently to hand from a foreign Sporting and Hunting Correspondent, RW ‘Belcher’Agar:

Dateline: Friday 26 December 2014

Subject: Clarens Brewery Eleven (?) Win Famous Victory on Clarens Oval

Release date: ASA bloody P

The second in a 19 match series between the Clarens Brewery and Agar Brewery was played on Boxing Day, a tradition that originates in the pre-dawn of this famous sport, perhaps more accurately, religion. The Agar Brewery lost the toss of the double-headed coin and was put in to bat. The sneering joviality of the Clarens Brewery captain, Aiden ‘Fifer’ Pollock, confirmed the great satisfaction of the home side as they limbered up for the conflict.

Clarens Brewery fielded two robust youngsters from their Academy on the Square, sons of long-time imbibers at the aforementioned Brewery. These young legends tore into the Agar Brewery’s batting line-up (suicidal at best!!) with Ross (6 years), Grandpa (78 years), Georgina (14 years), master brewer Mike, Tom (16 years) and captain ‘Belcher’ Agar himself falling to the onslaught. The latter, in the great tradition of teams from Puddlington-on-the-Swamp, ran himself out for 3. This left the visitors tottering at 7 for 6, or, as the Australians are wont to say, 6 for 7. Agar Brewery, heads hanging low, was reeling and an embarrassingly short match was in prospect. Clarens Brewery was sparking on all cylinders and took time out to make a batch of Clarens Blonde. However, in the grand tradition of the Guinea fowl rising from the ashes, Agar Brewery staged a comeback: The captain’s nephew, Duncan (12 years old) struck an exquisite 8 colossal runs while brother Donovan (31 runs, and possibly a sneak inclusion from the ranks of the Proteas) as well as Brian (16 years), who struck back with 10 invaluable runs. Agar Brewery looked smug at their modest score of 56, some 11 more than they scored in the first match of the series, in April 2014.

Clarens Brewery, acknowledging the tumultuous applause of the capacity crowd on the terraces, started with a flourish and had the scorers sweating as they ticked along merrily, losing only the odd wicket. Your correspondent must report that this situation was occasioned by the appalling fielding of the Agar Brewery team, which included an ‘own goal’ from the captain in the first over and dropped catches in the deep by Tom, Brian, Grandpa and yes, the captain, again. A missed run-out by, yes, you guessed it, the captain, added yeast to the wound. As Clarens Brewery supporters sipped champagne in the VIP boxes and threw strawberries at the fielders, Agar Brewery’s heads were bowed. Clarens Brewery’s team of valiant (and quite good-looking) heroes raced to within spitting distance of the Agar Brewery’s negligible score, with only half the overs bowled. However, in a reversal of fortune, Agar Brewery brought fast bowler Brian into the attack to bowl the second of his two overs with as much fire as he could muster. Brian, normally very relaxed to the point of sleep, was pumped to the gills and determined to lift his team to victory. He steamed in and stopped Clarens Brewery’s race to victory in its tracks, picking up 4 wickets to leave him with a 6 wicket haul. Clarens Brewery was teetering on the brink of an unprecedented disaster and was down to their last batsmen, still needing 5 more runs. However, in the great tradition of the heroes of old (April 2014?), their surviving batsmen (dropped twice by, you guessed it again, the Agar Brewery captain) duly knocked off the remaining runs in singles and Clarens chalked up their second win in the 19 match series.

The umpire, duly rewarded by the Clarens Brewery for his partial and selective blindness, called time and Donovan won Man of the Match with a fine innings characterised by timing, placement of his strokes and the cleanest socks on the oval. Other notable events in this stunning victory by what was unanimously agreed to be the better (best?) team was stellar bowling and fielding by both sides, notwithstanding occasional visits to the Clarens Brewery by both teams. Also noteworthy was secondment of Agar’s Jessica to the Clarens Brewery team to even the numbers, giving the Agar Brewery its only taste of victory on the day.

For the record, Clarens Brewery, humble in their second series victory, have refused promotion to the national first league on the grounds of other commitments, including the tasting of Clarens Red, 1912 and IPA. Agar Brewers were left to reflect on missed opportunities and what might have been. Both teams retired to the Brewery forecourt to have a nice cup of tea. Stay tuned for match 3 in this tumultuous series, with rumours flying about the recruitment of ‘ringers’ by the Agar Brewery for the next encounter!

Ajuga ophrydis

Ajuga ophrydis
Ajuga ophrydis (Photo: Damien Coulson)

 

 

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’re focusing on a member of the Lamiaceae (Sage and mint) family.

Ajuga ophrydis (Bugle Plant in English & Senyarela in Sesotho) is a perennial herb which may grow to 250mm tall. This remarkable yet understated herb grows sparcely distributed in rocky grassland areas, in close proximity to rocky slopes at higher altitudes up to 2700 m A.S.L, occurring from the Eastern Cape through to Mpum.

An altogether attractive plant, this specimen was observed above the Porcupine Trail, along what will soon be our new cycle route – the Caracal Contour. Interestingly this specimen and several new wildflowers were only observed in the area in which cattle have been excluded and in which an intact portion of fence remains, and is evidence of the need to conserve our natural heritage. As a matter of interest, this is the only member of the Ajuga genus which has been recorded in S.A.

The paddle-like leaves of A.ophrydis are basal and rosetted for the most part, measuring 30-170mm long by 15-40mm wide. The margins are covered in fine hairs and are toothed, sometimes slightly roled inwards. The inflorescence measures approx. 200mm long and is spiked. The whorled flowers are relatively small (12-14mm) and are blue-mauve. Each flower consists of a 5-toothed calyx with 1 reduced upper “lip”. 4 brown curved stamens appear as “eyes” on each floret, giving each flower the semblance of a miniature face. Flowering occurs from Oct-Feb. Uses:

Ecological role

The flowers of this plant attract a host of pollinators thus assisting with pollination of both wild plant and food-crop species.

Traditional Uses

This plant has been used in the formulation of traditional medicines and has apparently been used in traditional medicine to relieve menstrual pains.

Gardening

Those who’ve tried to propagate A. ophrydis have found it an easy plant to grow from cuttings.

Conservation Status

The SANBI conservation status for A. ophrydis is listed as Least Concern

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

 

Click here to read other articles on The Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

19th December, 2014: Merry Christmas

Christmas treetiff

Editors note

With Christmas now only days away, we would like to wish all our readers everything of the best for the festive season.   We too are taking a break, so there will be no newsletter next week.   We will however keep you informed of events you should know about via our facebook page.


 

The week that was

Lots of excitement in Clarens since our last newsletter.   The NG Kerk market was fun – and despite the fact that we had fewer feet than in previous years, the CVC still managed to sell nearly R1000 worth of Christmas Trees.   Scotch also opened their doors (see article below) and Mathias Chirombo was in town with the opening of his exhibition: Sacred Spaces at the Ism-Skism Gallery.   And we couldn’t help but notice a few smiles with the crowning of Miss South Africa, Rolene Strauss, as Miss World 2014.


 

Wicket re-opens

Thank you Mr Tim
Last Tuesday 9th December, A Devastating Accident occurred when a Taxi Drove Straight into Wicket Candle Shop. Luckily no one was harmed as the Employee Amanda, had left just 5 minutes earlier.  With the long weekend approaching Wicket Candle Shop due to the Damage would not have been able to open. But Thanks to Tim Moorcroft and his Stumble blocks a wall was put up in just under an hour.
Ricky (The Shop Owner) is Grateful for all the support from friends.  Thanks to Tim was able to open for that long weekend and is still open and back in business.

Wicket crash -WA0003[4] Widket before -WA0001[8] Wicket After-WA0000[7]

 


Scotch Whisky  Lounge opens its doors

Scotch

Spending time in the  Scotch Whisky Lounge is fascinating.
So many bottles, so many shapes, so many subtle hues of colour, so many different origins, so many different types, interesting labels, interesting stories….and that’s all before you’ve even had a taste!   Spending time with Colleen McLaughlin in the Whiskey Lounge is a real treat – even for a non whiskey drinker like myself.  (Or perhaps I should amend that last statement –  having now had the opportunity to learn a little bit about whisky, and got the amazing variety of perfumes that escape as you open the top – I know that somewhere in Colleen’s amazing whisky collection, there is a whisky that would suit my particular taste buds perfectly.
The range of whisky on sale is based on Colleen’s personal whisky collection and is made up of mainly single malt Scotch whisky, along with Irish whiskey, and American Bourbon, but also includes Japanese and Taiwanese whisky.   (Incidentally the Japanese recently won an international award for the best single malt whisky in the world.)   Also in the collection is Bains Cape Mountain whisky – a South African whisky voted the world’s best grain whisky in 2013. Read more

Our rangers on Patrol

ICVC waterfall picts summer! That means good food, good company and, when in Clarens – stunning scenery. A walk along our trails will yield a veritable eye-feast of waterfalls, copious water containing streams, lush greenery, birds of every feather and impressive landscapes. Come and enjoy a hike or picnic in the reserve – guaranteed it will be well worth-it.

The above is an extract from the November 2014, CVC Report.   As informative as alwlays.  Click here to read the full report.

 

 

 


Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Boophane disticha tiffArticle and photograph by Damien Coulson
Head ranger
Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts.  This week we’re focusing on a member of theAmaryllidaceae (Amaryllis) family.

Boophone disticha (Bushmans Poison in English, Boesmansgif or Gifbol in Afrikaans & Leshoma in Sesotho) is a perennial geophyte which may grow to 600mm tall. This extremely toxic bulb grows in grassland and rocky areas, usually on hill slopes. B. disticha occurs from sea-level right through to 3000 m A.S.L, distributed throughout S.A. Boophone distich is both drought tolerant and frost resistant. This particular specimen was observed on the Kloof Mountain Trail; however additional sightings above Scilla Walk, Porcupine and the Sky Contour trails have been recorded. Please note (again) that this plant is both highly toxic to people and livestock.   Read more


 EVENTS:

Christmas 2

20 December 2014 Paphama Youth Development Christmas Party:  Tshepong Centre

It feels unbelievable that it is almost Christmas time again! As we get into the spirit of giving and sharing with our loved ones, we must reflect on how privileged we are to be surrounded by our precious family and friends, that we need to remind ourselves that there are little children who are affected by HIV do not have a Mom & a Dad to love & feel loved and this time of the year is a sad and desolate time for them. We cannot fill this void but we can ease their sadness by showering them with gifts and a fun filled day.    Contact Ntsebe Mofokeng @ 078 245 1709 during office hours.

Nena logo 15 -19 December:  Nena Small Child Development:
Telephones
White & Black event 20 December:  White&Black Events Co. Launch
Annie Sloan 20 December, 2014 : Annie Sloan Chalk Paint Workshop
white Y black events 21 December, 2014: White&Black Braai Day
Nena logo 22-24 December Small child development Holiday program: Christmas
NG Kerk 24 December, 2014: Carols by Candlelight
Christmas 2
24 December/25 December 2014.
Christmas Eve Dinners And Christmas Lunch at various restaurants in and around Clarens.  (See Restaurant News below)
Annie Sloan 27 December, 2014: Annie Sloan Chalk Paint Workshop
Nena logo 29-31 December: Small child development Holiday Program: Old Year, New Year
Christmas 2  31 December 2014:   New Year’s Eve
Watch our facebook page for events.

 


Restaurant News

The following restaurants have indicated that they will be open on Christmas Day.

As we get their menues these will be uploaded onto our Events Page, but in the meantime, here are their telephone numbers so that you can be sure to have a table booked.

278 On Main:  0825565208   (278 Main Street) buffet lunch Click here to see the menu

Adamo Restaurant : 058 256 1212  (Protea Hotel) Click here to see the menu

Amigos Restaurant :   082 797 5079 (Main Street) Christmas dinner bookings essential

Artichoke:  058 256 1283 (Main Street)

Bon Appetit: 079 873 1318  (Rosemary Centre – Main Street)Click here to see the menu

Clementines: 058 256 1616/ 082 453 7060 not Christmas style 3 course meal.

Courtyard Cafe : 082 650 1503  (Oosthuizen/Main Street) Christmas dinner only on Christmas eve

Gosto: 082 416 3687 (On The Square Centre) Portuguese style dinner

Maluti Lodge: 058 256 1422/3   072 725 8549  (Steil Street)

Mont D’Or : 058 256 1272

The Lazy Gecko:  (Main Street): 061 405 8776 Breakfast/Lunch not Christmas style

The Trout & Mallard: 072 805 4448/058 255 0129 (Golden Gate Road) Click here to see the menu


 

Community News

Letter from the Clarens Ratepayers Association:Hi there,
With regard to Street Numbering, just a reminder that you should be making efforts to display your new street number on your property. Street numbering (as it is officially termed) has been on the cards since 2008 and has now been finalized and now brings Clarens into line with other towns across South Africa. Remember that your stand number is not changing, that will remain the same on Title Deeds and business documents, however, you will be required to advise your bankers and interested parties of your new street number. You will be required to produce proof of address in which case use your Municipal Account. Mail for Clarens is typically addressed to
Box Numbers, as we no longer have postal deliveries to properties, but of course the main reason for this change is to ensure that properties can more easily be located by emergency services and tourists and to conform with the rest of South Africa. Even although this change has been in the pipeline for more than 6 years, we understand the inconvenience which we will all have to bear, but it is for the greater good.

We wish you and your loved ones peace and happiness over the festive season.

Kind regards
Pat
Pat Raubenheimer
Chairperson
Clarens’ Ratepayers’ Association
058 256-1123/083 450-7070
email:raubenheimer@icon.co.za


Classifieds

Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website.   An interesting new building block now manufactured in Clarens has just been listed.   You may also need to order your Christmas cake……..

 

 

Letter from Clarens Ratepayers Association

Hi,
With regard to Street Numbering, just a reminder that you should be making efforts to display your new street number on your property. Street numbering (as it is officially termed) has been on the cards since 2008 and has now been finalized and now brings Clarens into line with other towns across South Africa. Remember that your stand number is not changing, that will remain the same on Title Deeds and business documents, however, you will be required to advise your bankers and interested parties of your new street number. You will be required to produce proof of address in which case use your Municipal Account. Mail for Clarens is typically addressed to
Box Numbers, as we no longer have postal deliveries to properties, but of course the main reason for this change is to ensure that properties can more easily be located by emergency services and tourists and to conform with the rest of South Africa. Even although this change has been in the pipeline for more than 6 years, we understand the inconvenience which we will all have to bear, but it is for the greater good.

We wish you and your loved ones peace and happiness over the festive season.

Kind regards

Pat
Pat Raubenheimer
Chairperson
Clarens’ Ratepayers’ Association
058 256-1123
083 450-7070
email:raubenheimer@icon.co.za

Boophone disticha

Boophone disticha.  Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve
Boophone disticha (Photo: Damien Coulson)

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts.  This week we’re focusing on a member of the Amaryllidaceae (Amaryllis) family.

Boophone disticha (Bushmans Poison in English, Boesmansgif or Gifbol in Afrikaans & Leshoma in Sesotho) is a perennial geophyte which may grow to 600mm tall. This extremely toxic bulb grows in grassland and rocky areas, usually on hill slopes. B. disticha occurs from sea-level right through to 3000 m A.S.L, distributed throughout S.A. Boophone distich is both drought tolerant and frost resistant. This particular specimen was observed on the Kloof Mountain Trail; however additional sightings above Scilla Walk, Porcupine and the Sky Contour trails have been recorded. Please note (again) that this plant is both highly toxic to people and livestock.

The leaves of B. disticha are arranged in a very prominent fan formation with dark green undulating margins, usually appearing after flowering has taken place. The oh-so-infamous bulb may obtain a diameter of 170mm and is almost always partially exposed to the sun. The bulb consists of layer-upon layer of thick and (highly toxic) dark coloured scales. The round compound flower is red-pink and each floret is held aloft on its own stalklet. A thick stem supports the flower-head. Flowering occurs from Aug-October. Uses:

Ecological role

The flowers of this plant attract a host of pollinators thus assisting with pollination of both wild plant and food-crop species.

Traditional Uses

The Khoisan believed that the leaves of B. disticha had special properties associated with the otherworld. A mummified bushman body was discovered in the Baviaanskloof wrapped in the leaves of this plant. Their belief is that this helps bridge the divide once the soul passes to the other side. The Khoisan thus regard this plant as one of the most mystically potent of all medicinal plants. It is also used by sangoma’s to enter a trancelike state; however since the plant is poisonous, the dosage must be absolutely spot-on or one may end up in I.C.U. or worse. Hunting is another traditional use whereby flint arrowheads are dipped in the poison and facilitate paralyses in quarry. Additional uses include use in psychotherapy and during circumcision as an anti-inflammatory and disinfectant.

Conservation Status

The SANBI conservation status for B. disticha is listed as Declining as a result of overharvesting for any number of traditional and medicinal uses. What many don’t realise is that the plant requires a minimum of 10 years to reach flowering stage and even then the plant does not flower every year. Declining status arises when a population has a large geographical range but numbers in the veld dwindle and/or their prevalence on muti markets increases substantially.

Damien1-100x100Article and photograph by Damien Coulson
Head ranger:  Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

 

Click here to read other articles on The Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

12 December 2014: Happy Holidays

Happy Holidays

Clarens is just fabulous for holidays.   There’s something for everyone.   Have a look at the all the Activities we have listed on our website:   http://clarensnews.co.za/activities/
We are often asked what there is for the kids to do.   Some suggestions include:
Picnics in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve.   Adventures such as Quad biking, Paintball, Zipline, Archery, Climbing Wall, as well as horse and pony riding, swimming (under supervision of course),  Putt Putt and Fishing – all of which can be enjoyed by people of all ages.   Nena – see the events below – are also holding the first of three programs specially for smaller children.


Good news from Greater Clarens Chamber of Commerce

The letter (see below) is great news.   After all, where would we be without all the businesses who contribute to making Clarens the special town it is.

Click here for your membership form


Clarens Open Feedback

 Article and photography
by Mary Walker

 

 

Last weekend the final event of the year for the top golfers in the Free State province took place in Clarens.  The Heineken Clarens Open is a three way partnership between Heineken, The Clarens Golf Estate and the Free State Golf Union, and counts towards provincial colours and points.
This is the second year of the event, which was held over two days, last year’s having been played on one day only.  The Clarens Golf Estate General Manager, Francois Schoeman, envisages that it will become the biggest annual amateur golfing event in the Free State.  This was the only Free State Golf Union tournament that has been able to fill its field this year, and neither Eskom nor the weather were successful at undermining the success of the event.  To see the results etc Read more 


More News from the Golf Estate

Contact:
Phone:  058 256 1270 / 1319
Cell: 082 326 4908
Email: gm@theclarens.co.za


Order your Christmas Trees

What a fun (and useful) way to support the CVC.


More about Christmas Trees

Tips for keeping your tree looking good:

The most important thing you can do is keep the tree watered.   Cool temperatures also help.   If you’re not bringing you tree in right away, let it sit in a bucket of water outdoors or in a cool place inside.

Try to keep it away from direct sunlight, winds, and sources of heat like heaters or appliances.

If your tree has been sitting for more than a day, make a fresh cut at the bottom at least 10cm above the original cut.   A smooth, clean cut will help the tree absorb water more readily. Place the freshly cut tree in lukewarm water,

Do not overload electric circuits.   If a fuse blows when you turn on your lights, it means that the line is overloaded or something is defective.

Lots of presents under the tree will of course, also help it to look good!


EVENTS:

13th December: NG Kerk Christmas Market

Ons hou Saterdag vlooimark op Clarens Plein, ons verkoop boerewors rolletjies, sosaties, skilpadjies en pannekoek. Daar is baie stalletjies – boeke, klere, juwele, handgemakte items, kersbome, tuisgemaakte produkte, olywe en nog vele meer. Kom geniet die dag saam met ons.

 

 

 

 

 


 

13 December:  Bark for Life  Can/SA

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

13 December: Andre Swiegers in Clarens

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 


Raoul and Black Friday at Friends


 

15 -19 December:  Nena Small Child Development:
Telephones

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

20 December:  White&Black Events Co. Launch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Restaurant News – Christmas Lunch

The following restaurants have indicated that they will be open on Christmas Day.

As we get their menues these will be uploaded onto our Events Page, but in the meantime, here are their telephone numbers so that you can be sure to have a table booked.

278 On Main:  0825565208   (278 Main Street) buffet lunch Click here to see the menu

Adamo Restaurant : 058 256 1212  (Protea Hotel) Click here to see the menu

Amigos Restaurant :   082 797 5079 (Main Street) Christmas dinner bookings essential

Artichoke:  058 256 1283 (Main Street)

Bon Appetit: 079 873 1318  (Rosemary Centre – Main Street)Click here to see the menu

Clementines: 058 256 1616/ 082 453 7060 not Christmas style 3 course meal.

Courtyard Cafe : 082 650 1503  (Oosthuizen/Main Street) Christmas dinner only on Christmas eve

Gosto: 082 416 3687 (On The Square Centre) Portuguese style dinner

Maluti Lodge: 058 256 1422/3   072 725 8549  (Steil Street)

Mont D’Or : 058 256 1272

The Lazy Gecko:  (Main Street): 061 405 8776 Breakfast/Lunch not Christmas style


Clarens on the Word Wide Web

Traveller 24
It seems that Clarens is going to be really busy these holidays.   traveller24.news24.com have Clarens listed at no 4 of South Africa’s top busiest towns this festive season.   To see the full list click onto their blog.

Travel Ground
Clarens has  also been featured in two separate Travel Ground blogs.   (The second one being an abbreviated version of the first.)   Click here  to see the second blog.

And if you missed the first blog:  Click here

Clarens News
We at Clarens News are also working madly and getting everyone listed.   In the meantime, our presence on the web seems to be growing nicely.  As of today we have 2,333 likes on our facebook page, and our google rating is improving steadily.   Please keep sending us photographs etc for your Clarens News listings.   (There is no charge for being listed on the Clarens News website.)


Prince Harry visits Lesotho

Maliba Lodge, Based in the Ts’ehlanyane National Park in Lesotho had the great pleasure of hosting both Prince Harry of Wales and Prince Seeiso of Lesotho over this past weekend. They were in Lesotho together to continue their remarkable work with their Lesotho based charity Sentebale.

To find our more about Sentebale visit theirwebsite.

Being that we are so close to Lesotho, Clarens is an ideal base for those wishing to explore the mountain kingdom.  (Remember to bring your passport.)

The Clarens News website has several articles on visiting Lesotho.   The articles are full of useful tips.   Have a look at http://clarensnews.co.za/exploring-lesotho/

 

 

 


Classifieds

Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website.   An interesting new building block now manufactured in Clarens has just been listed.   You may also need to order your Christmas cake……..

Letter from Mandy Prior

Letter to all DA residents of Ward 20 (Clarens) from Mandy Prior

 To all DA residents of Ward20 (Clarens).  I would like to thank you for your support over the past three years.

Unfortunately, due to health concerns, I have handed in my resignation as Councillor.

Fortunately, I hand you over into the capable hands of Councillor Roger Nhlapo, in the knowledge that he will keep the DA base strong in our area.

With the country in the state it is, I can with confidence say, the Democratic Alliance and its policies, is the only party that gives us hope for the future.

Best Wishes.

Clr.Mandy Prior

CRA Community Notice: Sewerage Charges

Following on from my email of Nov 15, when I reported that some residents in the Village had received their September Municipal Account with the overstated sewerage charges, it appears that on some accounts, the error is still appearing on the November accounts.
The Municipality apologises for this error; they had thought that it had been corrected when we raised it with them at that time and they are now going through the process of rectifying the error.  It would appear that the 50% discount, which the CRA had negotiated some years ago for those on the small bore sewerage system, had inadvertently  not been processed.

Regards
Pat Raubenheimer
Chairperson
Clarens’ Ratepayers’ Association
Phone: 058 256-1123/083 450-7070
Email:raubenheimer@icon.co.za

5th December, 2014 newsletter

Golf course

THE CLARENS OPEN

This weekend Clarens will be welcoming all those golfers (as well as their families and supporters) taking part in The Heineken Clarens Open.   Players will be playing 54 holes of stroke play on the newly planted course. Playing 36 holes on Saturday the 6th of December and finishing with 18 holes Sunday the 7th. The clubhouse will also be showcasing its new menu’s and recently updated facilities.

The golf course is looking magnificent (as can be seen in our feature photograph above taken by Mary Walker.)

Francois Schoeman (General Manager: The Clarens Golf Estate):  THE CLARENS GOLF ESTATE has gradually been climbing the ladder toward becoming the premier golfing destination in the Free State. Recently the entire Golf Course was rejuvenated by re-seeding the entire course. Adding to the new turf they purchased three machines of the highest quality to further help improve the course to attain top national standards.    Read more

 


MORE NEWS FROM THE GOLF ESTATE

Clarens Golf Estate Community Association Manager
Earns International Qualification

Francois Schoeman, General ManAger of The Clarens Golf Estate, has been named a Certified Manager of Community Associations (CMCA®) by the Community Association Managers International Certification Board (CAMICB). The board administers the CMCA examination, a rigorous test that measures knowledge of community management best practices. Francois Schoeman joins CMCAs worldwide who have demonstrated the skills essential for managing homeowner and condominium associations and cooperatives to the highest levels of Business expertise.

Francois Schoeman has joined an elite few with this qualification in South Africa. Management has been seemingly easy to Francois Schoeman and he has continued to develop himself personally into one of the top Community Associations Managers in South Africa. With his latest achievement he is set to continue his steady climb to the top of the industry.

There are +-3 000 Home owners Associations and 56 000 Sectional Title Schemes in South Africa. An Estimated 5 million people reside in organised communities.
Managers like Francois Schoeman manage assets in excess of R800 billion in the South African residential market. The value of property in organised communities is 27 percent of total residential property in South Africa. These skilled professionals are trained in the evolving complexities of community association management. CMCA-certified managers have the expertise needed to safeguard the assets of community associations, protecting home values and providing homeowners with peace of mind.

The CMCA is accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA) and complies with the NCCA’s stringent international standards for a professional certification program.

CAMICB is an independent board that sets the standards for community association managers worldwide. It is the first and only organization created solely to certify community association managers and enhance the professional practice of community association management. Merging existing Business acumen with industry specific knowledge. Francois Schoeman is currently the only CMCA in the Free State Province, South Africa.

CONGRATULATIONS FRANCOIS!!


 

TRAVEL GROUND POSTS A BLOG ON CLARENS

TRAVEL GROUND

Travel ground have posted an excellent blog:  Clarens – An Artists’ Haven for Everyone by Roseanna McBain.    The article has been shared on all their social media sites which have at present 5,329 Twitter fans, 28,831 Google+ followers and 66,643 Facebook fans.

It will likely also be shared on LekkeSlaap (their sister website) once it is translated to Afrikaans, to their fan base of 1460 twitter followers, 123,972 Facebook followers, and 10,969 followers Google+ followers.

This is great news for Clarens and will we believe go a long way to re-establishing Clarens as a major Art Centre.


Myosotis semiamplexicaulis

PLANTS FOUND IN THE CLARENS VILLAGE NATURE RESERVE

Damien1-100x100Article and photographs

by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’re focusing on our first member of the Boraginaceae (Borage) family.

Myosotis semiamplexicaulis (Forget-me-not in English, Vergeet-my-nie in Afrikaans & sethutu in Sesotho) is a bushy herb which may grow to 600mm tall. This little bush prefers moist ground amongst scrub and often rock (near ravines or on well-shaded southern mountain slopes) with an altitudinal range of 1400 right through to 3000 m A.S.L.

The genus name Myosotis harks from 2 Greek words – myos meaning mouse and otis meaning ear, most likely referring to the characteristic petal shape. The species name likewise comprises 2 words – semi or “partial” and amplexicaulis or “stem grasping” in reference to the leaves at their basal point closest to the stem.   Read more

Editor’s note:  When Damien sent us this information he drew our attention to the SANBI status for this species is DDT (explained in-text). So if you know of any varsity students looking for a research project, here’s a possible subject.

 


Order your Christmas Trees

Christmas tree sale

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What a fun (and useful) way to support the CVC.

 


Small child development over the holiday period

Nena

Small child development, holiday program

Dates: 15 -19 December, 9:00 – 12:00, Theme: Telephones

            22 – 24 December, 9:00 – 12:00, Theme: Christmas

            29 – 31 December, 9:00 – 12:00, Theme: Old Year/New Year

For children, age 4 – 5 years

                     (Min. 6 children/group – Max. 12/group)

                      Bring own snacks

Place: N.G. Church Hall, Clarens   Cost:   R90/child/day

For more information, contact: Nanette Campher: Cell: 072 240 8561

E- mail: nenanettecampher@gmail.com


Upcoming Events

There’s a lot happening this month.   For more Events please have a look at the Events page on the website.

 

Heinieken Open 20131206_104030[2] 6-7 DecemberClarens Open
Save our horses comedy 6 DecemberBrian Taylor Comedy Eveningat Shumba Valley 
Clarens Country Market10171100_386446191497111_6617258284236721055_n 6 DecemberClarens Country Market
Belly dance 6 DecemberYalla Habibi
Christmas 2 13 DecemberNG Kerk Christmas Market
Andre Swiegers 13 DecemberAndre Swiegers in Clarens

 


Restaurant News

The following restaurants have indicated that they will be open on Christmas Day.

As we get their menues these will be uploaded onto our Events Page, but in the meantime, here are their telephone numbers so that you can be sure to have a table booked.

278 On Main:  0825565208   (278 Main Street) buffet lunch

Adamo Restaurant : 058 256 1212  (Protea Hotel) details only available 1st week of December

Amigos Restaurant :   082 797 5079 (Main Street) Christmas dinner bookings essential

Artichoke:  058 256 1283 (Main Street) details only available 1st week of December

Bon Appetit: 079 873 1318  (Rosemary Centre – Main Street)not Christmas style 3 course meal.

Clementines: 058 256 1616/ 082 453 7060 not Christmas style 3 course meal.

Courtyard Cafe : 082 650 1503  (Oosthuizen/Main Street) Christmas dinner only on Christmas eve

Gosto: 082 416 3687 (On The Square Centre) Portuguese style dinner

Maluti Lodge: 058 256 1422/3   072 725 8549  (Steil Street) details only available 1st week of December

Mont D’Or : 058 256 1272 details only available 1st week of December

The Lazy Gecko:  (Main Street): 061 405 8776 Breakfast/Lunch not Christmas style

 


 

Community News (Notices and Letters)


Letter to all DA residents of Ward 20 (Clarens) from Mandy Prior

 To all DA residents of Ward20 (Clarens).  I would like to thank you for your support over the past three years.

Unfortunately, due to health concerns, I have handed in my resignation as Councillor.

Fortunately, I hand you over into the capable hands of Councillor Roger Nhlapo, in the knowledge that he will keep the DA base strong in our area.

With the country in the state it is, I can with confidence say, the Democratic Alliance and its policies, is the only party that gives us hope for the future.

Best Wishes.

Clr.Mandy Prior


Clarens Ratepayers Association:  re Sewerage

 Following on from my email of Nov 15, when I reported that some residents in the Village had received their September Municipal Account with the overstated sewerage charges, it appears that on some accounts, the error is still appearing on the November accounts.

 The Municipality apologises for this error; they had thought that it had been corrected when we raised it with them at that time and they are now going through the process of rectifying the error.  It would appear that the 50% discount, which the CRA had negotiated some years ago for those on the small bore sewerage system, had inadvertently  not been processed.

 Regards

Pat Raubenheimer

Chairperson

Clarens’ Ratepayers’ Association: Phone: 058 256-1123/083 450-7070

email:  raubenheimer@icon.co.za

 


Tshepong Christmas Party

The Tshepong Chistmas party has come and gone, but for those of you who couldn’t be there Dons Kritzinger sent us some photographs:   Click here to see them.


Classifieds

Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website.   An interesting new building block now manufactured in Clarens has just been listed.   You may also need to order your Christmas cake……..

 

 

Myosotis semiamplexicaulis (Forget-me-not)

 

Myosotis semiamplexicaulis. Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve
Myosotis semiamplexicaulis (Photo: D.Coulson)
Myosotis semiamplexicaulis. Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve
Myosotis semiamplexicaulis (Photo:D.Coulson)

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’re focusing on our first member of the Boraginaceae (Borage) family.

Myosotis semiamplexicaulis (Forget-me-not in English, Vergeet-my-nie in Afrikaans & sethutu in Sesotho) is a bushy herb which may grow to 600mm tall. This little bush prefers moist ground amongst scrub and often rock (near ravines or on well-shaded southern mountain slopes) with an altitudinal range of 1400 right through to 3000 m A.S.L.

The genus name Myosotis harks from 2 Greek words – myos meaning mouse and otis meaning ear, most likely referring to the characteristic petal shape. The species name likewise comprises 2 words – semi or “partial” and amplexicaulis or “stem grasping” in reference to the leaves at their basal point closest to the stem.

The leaves of M. semiamplexicaulis are alternate and roughly lanceolate, complete with fine short bristles. The inflorescence is much-branched and the flowers are blue-white with some even tinged pink. These flowers are small, measuring approximately 7 mm wide and the throat of each flower alternates white or yellow scales. Flowering occurs from Nov-Mar. Uses:

Gardening

Who wouldn’t want these little guys as ground cover in their gardens? Planted near a fence or under a windowsill they give a garden a soft welcoming feel.

Traditional Uses

Used traditionally in medicines and in enhancing memory retention in young traditional healers.

Conservation Status

The SANBI conservation status for M. ampexicaulis is listed as DDT (Data Deficient – Taxonomically problematic . SANBI declares a species is DDT when taxonomic problems hinder the distribution range and habitat from being well defined, so that an assessment of risk of extinction is not possible).

Damien1-100x100Article and photographs by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Clarens News: 5th December 2014

 

Click here for more articles by Damien on the plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Celebrating Art

Richard Rennie 50111


Today is Richard Rennie’s 82nd birthday!   HAPPY BIRTHDAY RICHARD!    I’m sure it will be quite a celebration at the Richard Rennie Gallery this afternoon  See you there.

AND on this special occasion it seems appropriate not only to celebrate Richard’s birthday, but also to celebrate art in Clarens.   Clarens is known as an art centre – and our art scene seems to be getting more and more vibrant.   One of the things that is so special about the art in our town is that there is such a wide range of art on offer – something to everyone’s taste.   The website has a list of the galleries in town – and a new ART ROUTE is about to be published.


Calling all artists:

Clarens News has  already uploaded most of the Art Galleries to Galleries Page on our website, and are happy to promote all art (and related) courses on our events page.  (If you have a gallery, please check the information on your page – and if you can’t find your listing, please send us your information so that we can rectify the matter.)

Clarens News would however like to take our website a step further and honour all those artists who live and work in Clarens but do not have a gallery of their own.   We’ve seen your work in our restaurants, hotels, and shops, but we’d love to have you listed on our website as well.   Please send us your details:  who you are, your contact details, a description of your work with one or two images if possible, and where visitors can see your work.     We are also happy to highlight news from your blogs or facebook pages in our newsletters.

And on that note.   We’ve been following Peter Bonney’s blog:   http://peterbonney.co.za/my-far-away-vondeling-paintings/   Click onto the blog and catch a glimpse of his latest work.


Clarens on Printerest

Another exciting development for Clarens News is that we are uploading images of Clarens onto our Printerest page.   (We were thinking of adding a gallery page to our website – but concluded that using Printerest would make it much easier for everyone to share.)  We’ve already started with a few and are about to upload an image posted to our Clarens News timeline on facebook from Lize Artist On Demand.   Lize writes:

I stay in Midlands KZN and was on holiday in Clarens in August. I went to Kado and was fascinated with the old Chev and took a photo as I decided I had to do a painting and thought I will share it with the Clarenites.


Klopse

Have you heard of the Klopse?   The KLOPSE is kind of Friendship Club that meets monthly (every month on the last Monday evening of the month) in the Methodist hall.   It had its beginning around 2001 as the “Afrikaanse Aand”. Although never exclusively Afrikaans it provided an opportunity for especially Afrikaans speakers to come and share with others their professional and general interests. The name was adopted after a talk by the late (Professor) Daan Wybenga (an eminent linguist) in which he explained the origin of the “Klopse” movement among the Coloured people at the Cape: they observed the “Clubs” of the British, and decided to have their own “Klopse” (from the word “club”). So Clarens’s own “Klopse” was born!

The KLOPSE in Clarens welcomes all friends who are interested in an informative talk (often illustrated) on a wide variety of subjects. In 2014, for example, subjects like the following were dealt with by knowledgeable local people: The Incas of Peru; African Music, Legends and Heroes from the Greek Classics; Sustainable Development of Cities; The Science of Diamonds; A sea voyage along the coast of Norway; The Conservation of the Clarens Environment. The variety is great, and the subject matter always interesting.   All are heartly invited to the gatherings at 18:30, on the last Monday of the month (except December). More information is available from Dons Kritzinger, 082-849-1505 or 058-256-1179.

The November meeting was postponed to this Monday (1st December, 2014)  .   You’ll find further details on the Events Page..


Ebola – A Threat to our Tourism Industry

Having just visited the Netherlands, Greece, France and Italy, I can’t say I am particularly surprised to receive an article from The Economist:  Economic Consequences of Ebola.  As soon as anyone we met discovered we were from South Africa they asked about Ebola.   We did our best to explain that it wasn’t a problem in South Africa, and those that believed us and didn’t move away, then asked if we knew any of the schoolgirls that had been kidnapped (Nigeria), or if we (like the “blade-runner”) slept with a weapon next to our bed.  It all seems so far-fetched, but yes these factors are probably having an impact on the number of tourists who visit South Africa – and will be felt even in Clarens.

So what can we do about it?   Not much except to spread information on the facts as widely as possible.   Derek Joubert’s article Ebola and Africa written for AG Africa Geographic is an excellent read, and we would suggest that it be passed on whenever possible.  ( You never know – it could make a difference.)  Click here to read the full article.


EVENTS

Have a look at the events page on the website.   With Christmas happening next month it seems that there’s already a lot of planning going on in Clarens to celebrate this special day.   But – why wait until Christmas – there’s a lot of fun to be had in Clarens before then.   Check the Clarens News facebook page on friday afternoon for news on the weekend’s music and weather.    Other events coming up soon include:

28th November:  Richard Rennie’s 82nd Birthday
29th November:  Cherry Food Market at Cafe Moulin
29th November, 2014:  Clarens Country Market
29th November:  Anton Benzon & Dianne Erasmus at Robert Badenhorst Art Gallery
29th November:  Christmas time show at Martie Lotz  hall
30th November:  Cherry Food Market at Cafe Moulin
30th November:  Christmas Carols service
KLOPSE FRIENDSHIP CLUB:  Ist December  Klopse Friendship Club
Brian Taylor Comedy Evening at Shumba Valley
6-7 December:  Clarens Open
6th December: Yalla Habibi

 

AND then there are lots more exciting events coming up in December, but more about those in the next newsletter.  (You can, of course, take a sneak preview by visiting the Events page on the website.)


 

Christmas is coming

Calling all Clarens Restaurants.   Please let us have your Christmas lunch menus:   We will upload them on our events page.   (Christmas Lunch is, after all, an event).

Classifieds

Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website.   An interesting new building block now manufactured in Clarens has just been listed.   You may also need to order your Christmas cake……..


Final Thought: Happy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving was celebrated in the USA yesterday.    Speaking personally, I give thanks everyday that I am lucky enough to live in Clarens.

Cotyledon orbiculata

 

Cotyledon orbiculata. Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve
Cotyledon orbiculata (Photo:D.Coulson)
Cotyledon orbiculata. Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve
Cotyledon orbiculata (Photo:D.Coulson)
Cotyledon orbiculata. Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve
Cotyledon orbiculata (Photo:D.Coulson)

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’re focusing on a member of the Crassulaceae (Crassula) family.

Cotyledon orbiculata (Pig’s Ear in English, Plakkies in Afrikaans & serelile in Sesotho) is a succulent shrublet whose stem may grow to 900mm tall. Many of you will have recognised this widespread plant which tends to grow on sandy or rocky soils. In the grassveld around Clarens you’ll generally find C. orbiculata at higher altitudes on the rocky sandstone mountain slopes (approximately 2000-3000m A.S.L.), occurring from the Western Cape through to Mpum.

The genus name Cotyledon comes from the Greek word kotyledon that means cup-shaped hollow, in reference to the leaves of some species. The species name orbiculata comes from the Latin “round circle”. Beware though, unlike other similar appearing families, such as the vygies (Aizoaceae) and most aloes (Asphodelaceae), the sap from the leaves of C. orbiculata are toxic. The variability of leaf size, shape and colour is influenced by the immediate environment; however 5 variants of this spp. are currently recognised in the botanical society. This specimen was observed on the recently established Sky Contour trail (available on the soon-to-be released, new and improved trail map).

The paddle or pig’s ear-shaped (hence the English common name) leaves of this species measure 50-100mm long X 35-60mm wide, are succulent and fleshy with a grey-green tinge. A characteristic red lip is evident on the leave margin. The branched inflorescence is borne aloft a thick stem with each of the nodding red-orange (yellow varieties exist) and tubular flowers measuring 30-40mm. Flowering occurs from Nov-Feb. Uses:

Gardening

Cotyledon orbiculata makes a nice pot plant or garden ornamental in succulent rockeries. It’s also a good plant to have as its tubular flowers are ideal for attracting sunbirds, whose long and curved beaks are specifically adapted to feeding on this form of flower.

Traditional Uses

Used traditionally as a poultice to treat boils, the leaves are heated and applied. The sap is also said to help treat warts, corn and general inflammations. Although toxic (cotyledontoxin), carefully moderated doses of the sap (from one leaf) can be used as a vermifuge. The leaves are also thought to be of use in the treatment of epilepsy. Livestock and domestic animals who eat the leaves suffer from a condition known as cotyledonosis. The Southern Sotho use a dried leaf as a protective charm for an orphan child and as a plaything

Conservation Status

The SANBI conservation status for C. Orbiculata is listed as Least Concern

Damien1-100x100Article and photographs by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

 

Click here for other articles about the plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Click here to find out more about the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

14 November, 2014: The newsletters are back

Rainbow over Clarens

After all the recent welcome rain – how could we not head this newsletter with a photograph of a rainbow.   It’s so nice to see smiles on the faces of our farming friends, and to see the dams filling.

Yes – the newsletters are back

We had so many requests for our newsletters that we decided to post them out again.Thank you to all our faithful Facebook followers for staying in touch via facebook. We will continue to post news – especially about Clarens weekend music events – on facebook, but since facebook is not really that suitable for our more in-depth articles, these will be published in our newsletters as well as on the relevant pages on our website: www.clarensnews.co.za.


Website News

The Clarens News website is getting better and better, and we’re slowly catching up with all the business listings. And GOOD NEWS FOR BUSINESS OWNERS, we have taken the decision to list all Clarens businesses for free.   So if you haven’t yet sent us all your details, please send them to editor@clarensnews.co.za.  We will get your business listed  as soon as possible.  (You may have to be a little patient, since doing the listings is a rather time consuming business.)   Clarens still does not have an official info centre (but we’re holding thumbs that the CTF may yet pull something out of the bag.)   In the meantime, Clarens News, will continue to strive to provide everything you need to know about Clarens.

 


Construction begins on delayed Stortemelk hydro plant near Clarens

Clarens News received the following google alert:

South African hydropower NuPlanet has broken ground on a new hydroelectric power generation plant on the Ash River. The plant, which will be built into the wall of the Botterkloof dam, is expected to cost R200m and be operational by the middle of 2016.The original plan, which was approved under phase 2 of the national Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement program (REIPPP) was due to come online this year, but was delayed by the REIPPP and a refinancing initiative, NuPower managing director Anton-Louis Olivier told htxt.africa.The existing dam will be unchanged, Olivier says, and the plant itself built on currently unused farmland.Stortemelk is a very small plant capable of producing just 4.1MW of energy at peak capacity – enough for a few thousand homes – and around 25GWh a year. It is being built with the backing of a local charity which will be returning profits from the plant back into other community project.NuPlanet already operates a similar hydroelectric installation at nearby Bethlehem.[Via – HydroWorld, Image – NuPlanet]


Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Pachycarpus macrochilus 2
Head ranger Damien Coulson has added yet another plant to the list of Plants Found in the Claren Village Nature Reserve.   The latest addition is  Pachycarpus macrochilus (Large-lipped Pachycarpus in English & leshokhoa in Sesotho)  a perennial geophytic herb whose stems grow to 140-330mm tall.   Click here to read more about this interesting plant.

 

Click here To see all the plants that Damien has written about so far.

 

 

 


 November is Cherry Time

IMG_1358The Ficksburg Cherry Festival kicks off on  20th November,  and Ionia Farm has already started doing Cherry Tours.  For further details visit the Events page on our website.

But of course, there’s also a lot of other things happening in November.

This Weekend:  Welcome back Dan Patlansky

Dan Patlansky
This weekend we welcome Dan Patlansky and all the guitarists taking part in his guitar workshop.  Unfortunately, this event has been booked out months ago, but, as with previous Dan Patlansky workshops, Clarenites can get  to hear some of the guitarists on their last night here.   They will be playing at the backpackers on Sunday evening from about 7 pm onwards, and anyone wanting to braai something to celebrate the occassion will be happy to learn that there will be braai fires available for them to use.

 

 


This Weekend: Golden Gate Half Marathon (Saturday)

runnersSouth African National Parks (SANParks) together with the Department of Environmental Affairs and Setsing Super Spar will host the Working for Water QwaQwa Golden Gate Half marathon on Saturday 15th November 2014 at Basotho Cultural Village inside the Park. The marathon will end at Setsing Super Spar in QwaQwa.

The marathon, which aims to improve the wellbeing and heath of the surrounding communities, was initiated by Biodiversity Social Projects (BSP)’s Working for Water in the Park as part of SANParks vision of ‘Connecting to Society’. It is a follow up to the successful marathon held last year and this year promises to be even bigger.

Click here for further details


 

This Weekend:  Daniele Pascal at Bon Appetit (Sunday)

Daniele Pascal A treat for all music lovers – and especially for Francophiles.    Daniel – known as an ambassador of the French Chanson is renowned for her work on Edith Piaf, Jacques Brel and the French Café Song genre.

Daniele will be performing at Bon Appetit on Sunday even1ng (6.30pm)  For bookings call 079 873 1318

Tickets are R230 per person, which includes a 2 course meal.


LADIES NIGHT at Artist’s Cafe  with Salon Norma Jean   (20th November)

Ladies Night 3

 

Salon Norma Jean have teamed up with Artist’s Cafe and are hosting a Ladies Night on the 20th November, to launch their exciting new range of Hannon products.

Booking is essential.

Click here for For further details

 


RICHARD RENNIE turns 82 on the 28th November

Richard Rennie 82

Richard continues to be an inspiration to all.    He will be celebrating his 82nd birthday on the 28th November, and everyone is invited to join him at the Richard Rennie Gallery from about  noon onwards. It promises to be a fun afternoon – extending into the evening.


Christmas Party – Phaphama Youth

 GIVE AND PUT A SMILE ON A CHILD

Letter from Ntsebe Mofokeng:  Paphama Youth Development

It feels unbelievable that it is Christmas will be approaching us soon! As we get into the spirit of giving and sharing with our loved ones, we must reflect on how privileged we are to be surrounded by our precious family and friends, that we need to remind ourselves that there are little children who are affected by HIV do not have a Mom & a Dad to love & feel loved and this time of the year is a sad and desolate time for them. We cannot fill this void but we can ease their sadness by showering them with gifts and a fun filled day.
You can replace the brick that the little boy is pushing as a toy car and the little girl whose eyes are shining bright and made the doll out of ragged cloths.

We are asking, most sincerely, for you to consider making a contribution to this special day. We would like to ask for any gifts for children aged between 06 – 14 years in supporting our Christmas Party for 100 Orphaned and Vulnerable Children. We would also like to have the jumping castle sponsored. (Clarens News will be sponsoring the jumping castle.)We humbly request the company to purchase toys and refreshment for children. To most of these children it will be the first time receiving a gift and feel like they are cared for and belong somewhere.
The Christmas Party is planned as follows:
Date: 20 December 2012
Time: 12:00 – 16:00
Venue: Kgubetswana Community Hall in Clarens

Vision: Developing individuals, restoring relationships, motivated and revitalizing communities.

All the donations are needed and appreciated, regardless of the amount. Please think about this and how important the work of Phaphama Youth Development is, and consider about the positive impact it will make in the community we live in. Please, send the donation to Phaphama Youth Development at the below bank account. Your help will help us to expand and outreach every individual affected with the issue.

For more information or clarity you are welcome to contact Ntsebe Mofokeng @ 078 245 1709 during office hours.

Click here For more information on Paphama Youth Development.


 

Clarens Open – Time to book NOW

Clarens Open

Click here for further details

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 Comedy Evening at Shumba Valley (6th December)

Comedy Evening

 

I’m told that Brian Taylor is really funny and will appeal to all those of us who belong to the slightly older generation that still have a sense of humour.

Click here for further details

 

 


 

 

Cluny Animal Trust – Fundraising

Cluny bookshelf

This is our latest fundraising effort, a tiny library/bookstore. We would like to put them at guest houses, guests can then read, buy or exchange the books by putting a donation in the tin. We will exchange the selection once a month. Please leave us a message in the comments if you are interested in getting involved! Share, Share, Share with everyone that might be interested!    Click here for more information on The Cluny Animal Trust.

And don’t forget to buy  your copy of the new Cluny Animal Trust Calendar, on sale at various outlets in Clarens.


 

 Classifieds – and all sorts of other information.

Remember to check out the Classifieds Page on the website.   AND  if you’re looking for a plumber, electrician, or any other services in Clarens please to to the Eat, Sleep and do more page

 

Pachycarpus macrochilus


Pachycarpus macrochilus Pachycarpus macrochilus 2

 

Pachycarpus macrochilus (Large-lipped Pachycarpus in English & leshokhoa in Sesotho) is a perennial geophytic herb whose stems grow to 140-330mm tall. In order to observe this species one will need to get on a proper set of hiking boots and head up to the rocky higher mountainous areas of the grassveld (1600-2200m A.S.L.) occurring from the Eastern Cape through to Mpum.

Break the stem of this guy and your fingers will be covered by sticky milky latex (as with most members of this family). The Latin macrochilus is derived from macro meaning large, and chilus, in reference to the lip-like structure of the flower corona.

 

On first inspection one will notice the stems of this little herb are sparsely and coarsely hairy. The leaves measure 30-150mm long by 17-43mm wide. The leave margins (on stalks of 5-15mm) are slightly undulating and also have sparsely distributed coarse hair. The flowers – occurring in clusters of2-6 -are what make this plant really interesting as they are cup shaped. When young the closed flowers are borne aloft, but hang when mature and open. The flowers measure 16-28mm and are green-yellow-clay red. The lobe tips are open and somewhat re-curved and measure 13-25-9-17mm. Flowering occurs from October-Jan. Uses:

Food

This species has been known to be browsed by goats in summer despite the plants milky latex.

Photography

Although not a “beautiful” plant per se, P. macrochilus is certainly an interesting and unusual plant to observe, and thus makes for a remarkable specimen for photography.

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger:  Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

 

Click here for other articles on plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Cluny Animal Trust: Fundraising

Cluny bookshelfThis is our latest fundraising effort, a tiny library/bookstore. We would like to put them at guest houses, guests can then read, buy or exchange the books by putting a donation in the tin. We will exchange the selection once a month. Please leave us a message in the comments if you are interested in getting involved! Share, Share, Share with everyone that might be interested!

ART EXHIBITION TONIGHT – 4th November, 2014: 19h00

 

 

sven

The group of artists (Mook Lion, Skumbuzo Vabazo, Mr Migo, Martin Lund, Sakhile Mhlongu, Sven Chritian, Niko and Matt Wareley – ably assisted by local artists Morgan and Edward) who have been working in Clarens over the last week have yet another treat in store for us.  Stop in at On The Square from  19hoo  tonight  to view their exhibition (part of the Flatlands Tour)  as well as a video of their work in Clarens AND if it doesn’t rain they’ll be doing some live painting on a car.

The artists would also like to extend a warm thank you to Gosto Restaurant for providing them with daily meals, as well as a message of the thanks to the Artists’ Cafe and the Clarens Brewery for providing us a delicious lunch.

Eskom load shedding

According to the Eskom Load Shedding Schedule on their website, Clarens is due for load shedding today from 12h00 until 14h30. The rest of the week is as follows:

Tuesdays from 16h00 until 18h30
Thursdays from 06h00 until 08h30
Saturdays 12h00 until 14h30

From November 9 until end of November, Sundays are not included in the load shedding.

However, this may or may not happen, some of you may recall that we were scheduled for load shedding before and it did not happen, but be prepared anyway.

Information thanks to Pat Raubenheimer, Clarens Ratepayers

Heritage Tourism

The Geography – and History Departments at the Qwaqwa Campus of the University of the Free State are in the process to undertake a project to explore and promote Heritage Tourism in the areas of Golden Gate Highlands National Park and Clarens. This project includes the documentation, evaluation and interpretation of all cultural, historical and natural sites in the study area. The aim is not only to produce scientific publications but also to apply this knowledge and information for marketing these tourism destinations.

Click here for more information:

PLEASE be so kind as to assist with the completion of the attached short online questionnaire.

Link to questionnaire:
https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1XZ6qlpaioDHRdZ2PsPjEBRK7kOIPf1fx5yXUF7b9CKc/viewform

Regards,

Dr Cobus Rademeyer & Prof Willie van Zyl

Department of Geography

Department of History

Qwaqwa Campus, University of the Free State

Tel: 058 718 5473/058 718 5432

vanzylwf@qwa.ufs.ac.za (082 806 2686)

rademeyerjs@qwa.ufs.ac.za (082 857 0256)

Upgrading of Clarens Water Treatment Works

Upgrading of Clarens Water Treatment Works

Proponent: Dihlabeng Local Municipality

EIA Ref: EMB/11(x&xi), 18(i), 40(ii), 13(c)iii(dd)/14/25

Notice of Environmental Authorisation

 Please note that the Free State Department of Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs issued environmental authorisation for this project on 11 September 2014.  The Environmental Authorisation can be downloaded at http://www.edcs.co.za/reports-and-documents/viewcategory/15-clarens-water-treatment-works.html.  The Department’s reasons for this decision are provided in Annexure 1 of the authorisation.

 Please note that parties may appeal this decision in accordance with the appeal procedure provided for in Chapter 7 of the 2010 EIA regulations. A Notice of Intention to Appeal must be submitted within 20 days of this notification to the MEC of the DETEA. The relevant contact details are provided in point 1.15 of the authorisation.  

Please contact me should you require any further information.

 Regards

Paul

_______________________

E&D Consulting Services

Paul Scherzer Pr.Sci.Nat, EAPSA

Member (Managing)

PO Box 222, Felixton, 3875

Tel:  035 791 1362

Fax: 086 661 2724

Cell: 084 207 6031

Golf course news – September 2014

The Clarens Golf Estate, Golf Course, will be closed for play during the annual treatments. During the weeks of September 22 – October 6th the course will be undergoing major summer treatments.Normally play would be able to continue, but due to our inter seeding program to revitalize the entire course to its former glory, the course will be best served by having no players in that time.

The course will be receiving topsoil, seed, aeration and hollowtining of the greens.

The summer should be one of great golfing indeed!

Click here for more information on The Clarens golf course

Sector Police Forum – Raffle

001 (2)[1]

 

The painting is on show at the Richard Rennie Gallery.

It is an original, framed, oil painting (110x80cm framed). Painted and donated by Richard Rennie to raise funds for the Clarens Sector Police Forum. The draw will take place on the 27th September at the Clarens Macnollie Challenge.

The tickets are R150 per number. Enquiries: clarensgallery@telkomsa.net

Click here to find out more about the Clarens Macnollie Challenge

Click here to find out more about the Clarens Sector Police Forum

Free Access to National Parks

Free Access to National Parks

South African National Park (SANParks) is again opening its doors for free from Monday, 8 September until Friday, 12 September as part of the annual South African National Parks Week. This campaign under the established theme ‘Know Your National Parks’ will allow locals with valid identity documents an opportunity to spend a day at a national park of their choice free of charge.

The week-long campaign will be applicable to all the national parks managed by SANParks. In Limpopo these are: Mapungubwe National Park and World Heritage Site about 70 kilometres outside of Musina, Marakele National Park outside Thabazimbi and the Kruger National Park and in the Free State we have Golden Gate Highlands National Park which is just 20 kilometres outside the town of Clarens

According to SANParks Acting Head of Communications, Mr Reynold Thakhuli the objective of the week is to cultivate a culture of pride in all South Africans in their relationship with the country’s natural, cultural and historical heritage. “When people start to take pride in the national parks, then we believe that they will start to understand the importance of conservation”.

The idea of a national parks focus week is a world-wide campaign and was conceived in South Africa in 2006, after realising that a vast majority of South Africans were not accessing the national parks.

The feature element of this campaign is the free access granted to all South African day visitors carrying their official Identity Documents. Young persons under the age of 16 will be allowed free access without proof of identity. It should be noted that the free access to the parks will not include accommodation and any commercial activities in the park such as guided safaris in vehicles or guided walks, etc.

“The survival of the South African national parks system and our natural and cultural heritage lies in the people of South Africa and we are focused on involving young people and communities, to cultivate knowledge of the importance of conservation and an appreciation for the country’s natural heritage,” said Thakhuli.

“We especially want our young people to take advantage of this opportunity because this heritage will be under their protection in the near future,” added Thakhuli.

The annual SA National Parks Week has been made possible with support from First National Bank (FNB) since inception 8 years ago. First National Bank’s position is that the green agenda cannot be separated from the social upliftment agenda in South Africa. Through our partnership with SANParks we are able to raise awareness on the importance of environmental education. We believe in responsible actions by individuals and communities, as an imperative factor in protecting and managing the environment and we are proud to be enablers of this initiative. The survival of the South African national parks system and our natural and cultural heritage lies in its people. As we celebrate 20 years of democracy in our country, we must applaud programmes like the National Parks Week for creating a sense of ownership of the natural heritage of South Africa in all its people,” says Hans Hillebrand, FNB CEO National Government & Institutional Business.

The newest sponsor Total South Africa has stepped up to the plate to help South Africans access these beautiful acres of land across the country. “Total South Africa’s partnership with SANParks provides TOTAL with a vehicle through which we can carry out our commitment to preserving the natural environment for future generations. We are also able to engage in extensive environmental education that seeks to share the wonders of the natural world with communities and children. We hope that the National Parks Week will help instill a culture of pride in our natural heritage and a sense of responsibility for its ongoing preservation in communities”, says Pansy Mekwa, Total South Africa General Manager: Strategy.

SANParks encourages all South Africans and especially educators and school groups to diarise these dates and plan a visit to a national park nearby. “The survival of the South African national parks system and our natural and cultural heritage lies in the people of South Africa,” concludes Thakhuli.

1st Setpember 2014

Let’s show our support: 
Dean would like to do local trips (Bethlehem etc) for residents of Clarens as a means of getting back to work gradually. As most people know, he has been off the road commercially since March, but he is getting stronger and needs to get back to driving again. He is hoping to make trips into Bethlehem to fetch and carry for locals, thus earning a little income and get himself back into the work habit. It has been a long haul, but thankfully he is winning the battle. Now we truly need
the support of the locals where possible, so if anyone needs items collecting or taking into town, please contact us, you will be helping Dean get back to work which he is very anxious to do now. The people of Clarens have been so caring through this terrible time and we both truly appreciate each and every person who has made a point of popping in to ask how he is doing. If there are any elderly (or not so elderly) people who need to go on shopping trips (group of 6 ideal) Dean is happy to collect you all and drive you through for a morning shop and wait for you in town for a small fee – once
again please contact us in this regard. Contact details (Maureen 082 921 3894) or physical address; Malutifootprints & Tours
“On The Square’ Main Street Clarens…

29th August, 2014: This weekend

Weatherweather 2

Goodness knows what’s happening with the weather.  Accuweather says nothing about snow, but if the snow report is anything to go by, we may see a few snowflakes this weekend.

Live Music

Friday 29th August,2014

  • Amigos:  3pm onwards:  OB
  • Amigos: 7pm onwards: Deon

Saturday 30th August, 2014

  • Amigos:  2pm onwards :  OB
  • Amigos:  7.30pm onwards –  Live live music (surprise band)
  • Artichoke:  5.30pm onwards:  Deon

Events:

Friday 29th August,2014

The Robert Badenhorst Gallery are having an informal gathering in the Friday night, 29 August, and would love to have all the locals there for a glass of wine and a snack.

Saturday – Sunday 30-31 August

Gerart – Exhibition at Robert Badenhorst Gallery:  For more info go to the events page on our website:

Start getting ready this weekend

Monday:  1st September 2014

Grouse A crossdressing party for the locals on September the first to celebrate Springday. Lots of prizes for the most original,outrageous, convincing costumes etc. Live music.

Rugby

rugby 2     Have a great weekend!

28 August 2014

We  could have some snow soon.

According to the snowreport.co.za forecast:

By late Thursday night, early Friday morning, falls are possible in the Southern Free State, the Eastern parts of the Eastern Cape, the Eastern Cape Drakensberg and many parts of Lesotho. There still seem to be a strong possibility that snow in the Free State could extend as far as Bloemfontein on Friday.

There is likely to be snow in the KZN Drakensberg and nearby midlands areas by Friday morning. Isolated falls are anticipated to continue through Friday in the EC, Lesotho, KZN, and even some possibilities into Saturday morning.

27th August 2014

Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve:

Damien Coulson (Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve) has sent us another article on the Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve.   This week the focus is on Geranium pulchrum: a very pretty little shrublet that grows in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve.    Click here to find out more.   You can read past articles written by Damien Coulson, on the plants found in the nature reserve on our website – just look up the Clarens Village Nature Reserve.

27th August, 2013

Important meeting this afternoon:

The CVC AGM takes place this afternoon.   4.30pm at the Methodist Church Hall.

All residents, business owners and ratepayers are encouraged to attend an important meeting to update and involve the community in some very important developments in the Clarens area.  These issues affect every resident in the Clarens area. We will be sharing how we have utilised our paid-up members’ subscriptions and donations during the last year to contribute to improving our community.  We will also be discussing some future plans for the following year…  For further details visit http://clarensnews.co.za/event/clarens-village-conservancy-agm-2/

Geranium pulchrum

Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve:Geraniium pulchrum
photo: Damien Coulson

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. This week we’re focusing on a member of the Geraniaceae (Geranium) family.

Geranium pulchrum (no common names), is a hardy shrublet that grows to around 1.2m in moist areas (marshland, stream-banks, at the bases of cliffs and near seeplines), as with many geranium spp. This geranium grows at an altitudinal range of 1500-2285 m A.S.L.

G. pulchrum tends to form dense stands in higher altitudes and is endemic to the EMR. The Latin “pulchrum” means “beautiful”, in clear reference to the heart-shaped florets. At first glance it may resemble several local geranium spp., but when in doubt take a glance at the leaves and compare to those of similar spp.

G. pulchrum has stems that are basally woody & silky textured and flexible near the apex. The leaves are fairly large for a geranium and measure 80-120 mm in diameter and have 5-7 deep notched lobes. The leaves are hairy above and appear silvery and silky below (the hairs trap moisture and act as an anti-desiccation mechanism), with stalks longer than the leaves. The inflorescence are moderately sized and singly/occurring per stalk. The 5-heart-lobed flowers are really a small-marvel and grade from a light-deep pink with deeper pink/purple veins leading to the white corona. The flowers measure 20-35 mm in diameter and flower stalks measure approx. 60 mm, appearing silvery.  Flowering occurs from Dec-March.

Uses:

Photography

This herbaceous plant and the art of photography go together well. Be prepared to take your camera into moist areas and make sure of your footing where slipping is likely to occur.

Gardening

As far as geraniums go, this one is definitely worthy of the garden and makes an attractive ornamental or hedge-plant.

Conservation Status

The SANBI conservation status for G. pulchrum is listed as Least Concern.

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

 

Click here for more articles on the plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

26th August 2014

Power Point Presentation. We’ve been working on a power point presentation to take to the Getaway show this weekend. Have a look athttp://clarensnews.co.za/clarens-power-point-presentation/
All comments or suggestions welcome.

The latest snow report: (snowreport.co.za) : Big snow coming! The first in the series of frontal systems brushed the WC last night, and the second one will arrive this afternoon. By tomorrow morning, we should already see light snow falling on the extreme high peaks around Ceres and on the Cedarberg ranges. The third frontal system will arrive shortly after that, dropping the freezing level down to 1200m in places, with widespread snow expected over most of the high lying areas of the SWC and into the Southern parts of the Northern Cape by Thursday morning. At the same time, the cold front will extend eastwards, dropping snow on most of ranges as it goes.
By Thursday afternoon, widespead light snow is expected over the Karoo, the Southern parts of the NC and all the coastal mountain ranges from Hermanus to Cape St.Francis, as well as inland regions of the Eastern Cape. By late Thursday night, early Friday morning, falls are also possible into the Southern Free State, and the Eastern Parts of the Eastern Cape, the Eastern Cape Drakensberg and Western Parts of Lesotho.We are also starting to see snow into KZN by Friday morning, some falling down in the midlands, with some moderate falls possible in places. Isolated falls are likely to continue through Friday in the EC, Lesotho and KZN, and even some possibilities into Saturday morning in these regions too. We will update again tomorrow as the front makes landfall. The forecast for the Free State and KZN is sketchy at this point, and is likely to change once the front makes landfall, but is entirely possible at this point.

22nd August, 2014: This weekend

WEATHER weatherWe’ve had some welcome rain, the willows are greening, the fruit trees have started flowering, and everywhere are signs of spring.  But, don’t pack away those winter woollies yet, there’s a cold snap on its way.


MUSIC

Friday 22nd August, 2014

Amigos:  4h00 – 19h00 ; OB Amigos: 19h00  onwards ;  Deon The Grouse and Claret:  20h00 onwards:  Hensie and Denzl

Saturday 23rd August, 2014

Amigos:  14h00 – 18h00 ; Deon Amigos:  19h00 onwards :  Hensie and Denzl


RUGBY

Watch it at one of our Clarens pubs – it’s almost like being at the game. Rugby                 Springbucks


RESTAURANT NEWS

Cafe Moulin is closed until the 30th September, 2014

Weekend Specials:

The Grouse and Claret are serving Thai chicken and curry, and Venison pot pie. Have a look at the website Restaurant page to see Clarens Restaurant weekly specials.  The restaurant telephone numbers are also listed on this page.


CLARENS TOURISM FORUM – Reminder

Don’t  forget to drop off your marketing material for next weekend’s Getaway show to Gavin at Mountain Odyssey or Valerie at Bon Appetit.

Diascia integerrima

 

Diascia integerrima.  Clarens Village Nature Reserve
Photo: D. Coulson
Diascia integerrima.  Clarens Village Nature Reserve Diascia integerrima.  Clarens Village Nature Reserve

This week we’re focusing on another member of the aptly named Scrophulariaceae(Snapdragon) family.

Diascia integerrima (Swinspur in English, Pensies in Afrikaans and Leilanenyana in Sesotho), is a slender, erect and tufted perennial herb attains a height of between 200-500mm. It grows in a variety of ecotypes including cliffs, rock faces, dry gritty soil, and along stream-banks. In Lesotho these flowers can become fairly prominent along roadsides. D. integerrima occurs throughout the Eastern Free State, northeastern Cape and the Drakensberg in KwaZulu-Natal, and grows at altitudes of up to 2865m A.S.L.

Observing these flowers in mountainous areas is really a must-see, especially as it often grows among other high-altitude plants in summer, such as Kniphofias, geraniums, aloes and of course the Blue-Scilla. The genus Diascia, is only found in southern Africa and comprises 70 species. Diascia is derived from a combination of the greek “di” or 2 and “askos” or sac, which refers to the 2 oil containing spurs.

The leaves of D. integerrima differ somewhat from its brethren in that they are lanceolate (as opposed to roughly obovate), but may be slightly serrated at the base. Leaf measurements are 13-40 mm long X 1-3mm wide and are usually clumped at the base of the stems with a few smaller leaves towards the top. The flowers are a dull-bright pink, measuring approx. 10mm wide by 20mm long with rounded petal lobes, a raised keel and often show numerous tiny gland dots on the mouth and a yellow and maroon window (concave patch at the flowers centre). The 2 spurs are incurved at the tips orientated vertically with spreading calyx lobes. These are found at the back of the flower, and give rise to the English common name. The stems are square, blue-green and somewhat woody although still touch-soft. This plant flowers Dec-late March

Gardening

This lovely wildflower is also a jewel in the garden as it is relatively hardy and flowers throughout summer.

Ecological service

These flowers are pollinated by specially adapted oil-collecting bees. The bees modified front legs are designed to allow them to scoop oil from the 2 spurs. Several weeks later round seeds form in green capsules, which when brown, split open releasing the ripe seed.

Conservation Status

The SANBI conservation status for D. integerrima is listed as Least Concern.

 

Damien1-100x100

Article and photography by

Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Click here for more articles on Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

15th August, 2013: This weekend

 

Weather: According to Accuweather we may have rain tonight and tomorrow, but we should get some sunny weather again on Sunday.   You can always get the latest report from the Clarens News website:   (Easy to access from the Home page.)

The latest snow report indicates:

Light snow is still possible over the extreme high peaks of the KZN Drakensberg and Eastern Lesotho on Friday afternoon and into the evening. Saturday afternoon could see a couple of flurries over the Maluti Mountains in Northern Lesotho, and on Sunday afternoon, we could see some light falls again over the extreme high peaks of the KZN Drakensberg and Eastern Lesotho.

Music:

Friday 15th August, 2014:

Amigos:  OB from 2 – 7pm

The Grouse & Claret:  OB from 8pm onwards

Saturday: 16th August, 2014

Amigos:  Deon from 11 – 7 pm

Sunday: 175h August 2014

Amigos:  Deon from 11 – 7 pm

Rugby:  Grab some of the atmosphere at one of our local pubs.  It’s almost like being at the game.

Rugby

Restaurant Specials:

The Lazy Gecko are serving Old style Fish and Chips for R35 in their back garden.  Click onto the Restaurant page of the website for Restaurant telephone numbers and regular restaurant specials.

Events

Save Our Horses Fund raising ride.  See events page on the website.

Therrese Standten memorial:

Memorial word gehou vir Theresse Standten wat in motorfiets ongeluk oorlede is van amigos word saterdag,16 Augustus gehou. Alle bikers word genooi om 9h00 bymekaar te kom by sias oosthuisenstraat waar daar van daar af na amigos gery gaan word en daarna word daar met motorfietse na die plek waar ongeluk in surrender hill beweeg. Kom ons maak dit ñ spesiale dag vir die familie en vriendin. Meer inligting kontak 0847008558

Robin Williams:

I’m sure that many of us in Clarens are still reeling from the shock of Robin Williams’ death.   Click here to see a special  video clip, as this is the way his family would like us to remember him.

 

Have a great weekend.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Water Supply Maintenance

 THE MUNICIPALITY WILL BE DOING MAINTENANCE AND CLEANING OF THE TOWN RESERVOIRS FROM THE 12th AUGUST TO THE 15th AUGUST 2014.

 THE PROCESS SHOULD NOT AFFECT WATER SUPPLY. THIS MAY RESULT IN SLIGHT CLOUDINESS OF THE WATER FOR A SHORT PERIOD BUT WILL REMAIN SAFE AT ALL TIMES

Clarens Village Conservancy AGM

Untitled   

Important Meeting Notice

All residents, business owners and ratepayers are encouraged to attend an important meeting to update and involve the community in some very important developments in the Clarens area.  These issues affect every resident in the Clarens area. We will be sharing how we have utilised your taxes and contributions during the last year to contribute to improving our community.  We will also be discussing some future plans for the following year which will require your participation.  These initiatives require your involvement to be able to be sustained and we urge that your minimum contribution is to at least attend the meeting and provide your input.

Venue: Clarens Methodist Church Hall

Wednesday 27 August 2014 at 16:30

Agenda Clarens Village Conservancy Annual General Meeting

* 1. Chairperson’s report

*2. Financial report

*3. Election of office-bearers for the following year

*4.  Determination of membership fees

*5.   Any other matters

*6.  Clarens Fire Association brief update

*7.   Clarens Ratepayers Association brief update

*8.  General

For further information contact Rodney Wainwright – 083 680 7770

REDUCE, RE-USE AND RECYCLE

TO ALL CLARENS RESIDENTS AND BUSINESS OWNERS

It is widely accepted that recycling is something which deserves our total support.  Like all responsible citizens we as the Social Concerns Working Group of Combined Churches in Action (CCIA) would like to affirm the well-known call to REDUCE, RE-USE AND RECYCLE.

Evon Els, who runs and manages the Clarens recycling plant, is doing a remarkable job, everywhere collecting material which can be recylced, and encouraging all the residents of Clarens/Kgubetswana/Kanana/Phahameng to collect bottles and plastic.  In this way our town is cleaned up and job opportunities are created at the plant.   She is even willing to collect recyclable material on request.

We would like to assist in asking all our householder and businesses to separate the plastic, glass, tin, paper and boxes from the rest of their rubbish and put it out for collection in transparent green (or other coloured) plastic bags… on the same day as you do the black bags for refuse removal.   The municpality has agreed not to pick up these coloured bags, but to leave them for removal by her.   (You are in any case more than welcome to take your green bags down to the recycling centre yourself.)  THIS ARRANGEMENT STARTS AT THE BEGINNING OF AUGUST 2014.

These green bags are more or less the same price as the black bags, can be bought at your usual shop, but will also be available for sale at the recycling centre and following businesses:  Clarens Village Grocer, Clarens Trading Post, Horeb Butchery, and Old Stone Bottle Store.

Please support this wonderful process, and if you are a guest house owner encourage your guests to cooperate.

For further information contact Evon at 073-708-7832 or Dons at 082-859-1505.

Richard Koch, Chairman

 

4th August 2014: snow report

Latest news from snow report: www.snowreport.co.za. On Thursday, we can see some moisture coming down from the North, and there are some chances of very light snow in Lesotho and the extreme high peaks of the EC Drakensberg from Thursday through to Saturday. At this point, the freezing level is too high to produce any noteworthy falls, but we will update again tomorrow if anything should change on the forecast.

Posted to clarensnews facebook page:  4th August, 2014

1st August, 2014

The Twitcher

Well, it had to happen.  After 72 editions of edifying social commentary from your faithful scribe, the Editor is going modern and taking this august publication into the twenty-first century.  Just like that.  Imagine, no more waiting with bated breath for a weekly dose of truth on a skewer (oh alright, fortnightly more recently).  Instead, you can now trip into the same diet of news and commentary daily, nogaal, courtesy of some clever people who opened up Facebook to an unbelieving world.  So that’s the deal, dear readers.  The Editor, not content with changing the world as we know it, is also putting up posters all over the village, offering the option of pointing your smartphone at what looks to me like a bloody enormous bar code, to take you straight to the Clarens News! Eish!  (And I don’t mean the other publication that a few of you sometimes read). As for me, it’s back to the World Bank, economic conferences, negotiating peace in the Middle East, judging Master Chef and inventing wireless electricity.  A fellow has to work, and this lull in my writing duties allows me to return the world stage a wiser but probably less articulate man.  It’s been fun though.  The haunting terror of having Bigfoot (well, Kaalvoet, as it turned out) stonking around the orchards of the village was an immense experience, not least taking the big lady (yes, she was a girl and oh so passionate) to a dance night at Friends.  David Attenborough messing with our ducks was another capital story, and there is an entire generation of feathered friends who nostalgically recall their BBC-crafted transportation across the ponds of Clarens.  Ah, those were the days.   Libel actions, proposals of marriage, beer tasting when the well-water got lumpy and other salutary experiences have brought tears of joy to my squint eyes.  All in the name of Clarens News. Well, it’s over now so you’ll find me on the third barstool from the end at the Brewery.  Unless of course, the Editor relents and asks me back……………… The Twitcher (retired) Editor’s note:  Follow us on facebook.   I’m sure we’ll find a way to sneak an ornithological note in somewhere.

Community: Get together to celebrate Theresse’s Life: 16th August, 2014

Community:  Get together to Celebrate Theresse’s life: 16th August, 2014

It is a huge lost to everyone who knew Theresse. She will be missed by her family, friends and all of the Clarens Community. To celebrate her life on Saturday 16/08/2014. Everyone is invited but a special request is that all bikers will attend this day with Dave and all family and friends to celebrate Theresse’s life.

Please contact me regarding the arrange with the bikes on 0847008558/Clarens Pharmacy at 0582561852 or clarenspharmacy@gmail.com

Biking oil was in her blood,

Petrol flowing through her heart.

Throttle reving but the flood, Meant their engine Wouldn’t start.

The exhaust sounding rather rough, Its noise as cutting as a knife. The gallant spark not quite enough, To fire their engine into life.

The key was turned, the button pushed, Expecting now a biking roar, But the engine … knackered … bushed, Wouldn’t function any more.

Theresse has died but still, her soul rides onward to the west. Her wheels role onward, vale and hill, She soon will find eternal rest.

So we’ll mount up and onward ride, Remembring well the one who died. Towards the sunset on our road, Our biker friend who’s gone before.

Funeral poem for a biker

© 2010 Dick Underwood

1st August 2014

Photograph by Fred Beck
Photograph by Fred Beck

I’m sure you’ll all agree, that the photograph above is simply stunning.   (Taken by Fred Beck.   Click here to go to Fred’s facebook page)

This is the front cover for the 2015 Cluny Calendar, which features a collection of stunning photographs taken in the Clarens and Fouriesburg area.   The calendars are sold in aid of the Cluny Animal Trust.   Phone (0)58 223 0918 or 
E-mail:  info@clunyanimaltrust.co.za to place your order.   Click here to find out more about the Cluny Animal Trust.

Following last year’s much enjoyed articles which accompanied each photograph from the calendar, Mary Walker, has kindly undertaken to give Clarens News another series of articles.  (Each one inspired by a photograph from the calander.  This week we feature her first article:  Sentinels of the Veld.


Everything you ever wanted to know about Clarens.  Every Day!

For the last 24-months the Clarens News has been updating, entertaining and giving tens of thousands of readers an overview of what’s on in our phenomenal village.  We’ve offered everything from rugby to rock and roll, from missing pets to plumbing services.  And we’ve grown exponentially in terms of reach and influence in this very special community.  But now it’s time for a change!

Social media rules the world, as we all know, and the time has come to capitalise on our success with Facebook, replacing the fortnightly ‘event’ of Clarens News publication with a daily offering on Facebook.  Clarens News and its Website receives literally thousands of daily Facebook hits, often stimulated by specific features and news of relevance to particular communities.  This allows us to play an enhanced role in telling residents and visitors alike what’s on, where it’s happening and when.  People with new ‘smartphones’ can point the device at our posters soon to be displayed in every major site in the village and read the QR code featured there, which will take them straight to the Clarens News page and website.  If you don’t own a smartphone, you can still pick up the Facebook page on your computer by going to our facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/ClarensNews

This response to news gathering and dissemination is in line with international trends and will link tourists and residents instantly to the business life of Clarens.  The availability of the Clarens News Website adds a fantastic dimension to our service, allowing visitors to the site to review everything from accommodation and restaurant options, to adventure, tours and sport.  News is about what’s on now rather than what’s happening over the next fortnight, and that’s what the Clarens News intends to provide in a constant stream of important information.

So gear up and follow us on Facebook for everything you always wanted to know about Clarens, but didn’t know where to ask.


Sentinels of the Veld:

It has been said that the skyline of a Free State dorpie is hardly complete without the spire of an NG Kerk.  It might also be said that the vista of a Free State farmland is equally incomplete without a windmill.  Our photograph this week, taken by Fred Beck of Gauteng, depicts this much loved icon of the veld, adorned in a profusion of summer cosmos.  (Click here to go to  Fred Beck’s facebook page.)

The concept of harnessing the energy of wind is an ancient one.  The Sea People of ancient times discovered its almost magical powers by catching wind in rudimentary sails to propel sea vessels, a skill later perfected by the Phoenicians.  Some historians claim evidence that the ancient Persians and Egyptians in Biblical times used wind to turn crude bladed wheels for various purposes.  Solid evidence exists that the Persians were the original engineers of the earliest forms of the vertical windmill, and these were in extensive use from about the 7th century AD.

Britain and Europe lagged behind, still using animals to turn wheels and cogs, but the Christian Crusaders changed this from around the 12th century AD.  During their religious occupation of the Middle and Near East regions they encountered new technologies that they took back to Europe.  Among these was the windmill.   Read more

 


More about Cluny

Cluny Truck Cluny Animal Trust

The Cluny Animal Trust send their committed team far and wide to come to the aid of animals in need, and hopefully they will soon have the mobile animal clinic pictured above, which would enable them to be even more effective.   Dr Sanit Meintjes reports that the Cluny Animal Trust recently participated  in the WODAC (World of Dogs and Cats http://www.dogscats.co.za/ ) pet exhibition at Gallagher Convention Center, Midrand on 18, 19 and 20 July 2014. Although their stall attracted many visitors the real star was the mobile animal clinic that was parked outside and that drew the interest of many professionals in the animal care industry, as well as the general public. The mobile clinic has been on order for a long time but will hopefully be delivered to Cluny within the next few months. Some cash donations were received but the real benefit was the many contacts that were made in the pet welfare and animal rescue industries. Networking with other people who work to treat or prevent neglect and cruelty to domesticated animals was a real morale booster and the team is more determined than ever to continue with education, preventive medication and veterinary based animal welfare.

Click here for more information on the Cluny Animal Trust, as well as their banking details, should you wish to donate to this worthwhile cause.


Clarens Tourism Forum – Feedback on meeting 29th July, 2014CTF logo

The Clarens Tourism Forum held a well-attended meeting at Mont D’Or on 29th July:  The Way Forward.   There was a lot of healthy discussion and it became obvious that matters could not go on as they were, but that the CTF needed – amongst other things – to find the right person to market Clarens.   It was agreed that the CTF would go ahead and plan the marketing strategy for Clarens, and that they would present the budget needed in order to take these plans forward, as soon as possible.

One of the subjects that came up during the discussion was the need for Training in order to up the levels of service in Clarens, and fortuitously George van der Merwe was there to tell us about The Ash Conference, Training and Event Centre and their programs which will help to address this need.  (See below)


The Ash Conference, Training and Event Centre

The Ash Conference, Training and Event Centre (formerly Cranford Inn) has partnered with the South African Institute of Entrepreneurship (SAIE) in Cape Town to create a Technology and Skills Centre at The Ash. Three local young adults, John Mokoena, Ntsebeng Mokoena and Florence Moloi were selected following a business simulation hosted by SAIE to become the owners of a computer skills training school at The Ash. All the participants in the business simulation received a free training module which is underway at the moment.

The computer training modules will be available to staff from restaurants, guesthouses, art outlets, etc from August 4. Attendees will be able to attend session in the morning, afternoon or evenings. The aim is to improve computer literacy and teach basic word processing, spread sheet and presentation programmes initially. More programmes will follow, as the need arises.

Contact:  George van der Merwe: phone 082 466 5410/058 256 1076  email:  www.theash.co.za


Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Alecta pumila Damien1-100x100 Article and photography by Damien Coulson Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve   Alecta pumila Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Monthly Plant of Interest”. This week we’re focusing on a member of the Scrophulariaceae (Snapdragon) family. Alecta pumila (seona in Sesotho), is dwarf haggard appearing herb of 40-80 mm tall found scattered in grasslands, usually at higher altitudes on cliff faces and proximate to rocky areas. This herbaceous spp. is endemic to the Eastern Mountain Region and grows from the Eastern Cape to Botswana at altitudes of between 1650 – 1980 m A.S.L. A. pumila is a hemiparasitic herb meaning that it survives through 1 of 2 strategies: reliance on a grass host for nourishment or alternatively through photosynthesis as most plants do. The Latin Alektor (from which Alectra is derived), means rooster or cock, in reference to the yellow-orange colouration of the inflorescence often observed on the birds plumage. Members of the genus turn dark purple or black if bruised. Pumila is Latin-derived for small, puny or tiny, in testament of the dwarfish stature of the plant. The photo below was taken along a section of the Leucosidea trail, and is the only known specimen to have been recorded in the Clarens Nature Reserve.   Read more Click here to learn more about the Clarens Village Nature Reserve Click here to become a member of the Clarens Village Conservancy


The Twitcher

Well, it had to happen.  After 72 editions of edifying social commentary from your faithful scribe, the Editor is going modern and taking this august publication into the twenty-first century.  Just like that.  Imagine, no more waiting with bated breath for a weekly dose of truth on a skewer (oh alright, fortnightly more recently).  Instead, you can now trip into the same diet of news and commentary daily, nogaal, courtesy of some clever people who opened up Facebook to an unbelieving world.  So that’s the deal, dear readers.  The Editor, not content with changing the world as we know it, is also putting up posters all over the village, offering the option of pointing your smartphone at what looks to me like a bloody enormous bar code, to take you straight to the Clarens News! Eish!  (And I don’t mean the other publication that a few of you sometimes read). As for me, it’s back to the World Bank, economic conferences, negotiating peace in the Middle East, judging Master Chef and inventing wireless electricity.  A fellow has to work, and this lull in my writing duties allows me to return the world stage a wiser but probably less articulate man.  It’s been fun though.  The haunting terror of having Bigfoot (well, Kaalvoet, as it turned out) stonking around the orchards of the village was an immense experience, not least taking the big lady (yes, she was a girl and oh so passionate) to a dance night at Friends.  David Attenborough messing with our ducks was another capital story, and there is an entire generation of feathered friends who nostalgically recall their BBC-crafted transportation across the ponds of Clarens.  Ah, those were the days.   Libel actions, proposals of marriage, beer tasting when the well-water got lumpy and other salutary experiences have brought tears of joy to my squint eyes.  All in the name of Clarens News. Well, it’s over now so you’ll find me on the third barstool from the end at the Brewery.  Unless of course, the Editor relents and asks me back……………… The Twitcher (retired) Editor’s note:  Follow us on facebook.   I’m sure we’ll find a way to sneak an ornithological note in somewhere.


PLANNING AN EVENT?

Natalie received a letter from the SAP addressed to all Event Organizers and Venue Owners in the Free State calling for a schedule of events to be submitted 6 months in advance !   (Click here to see the letter.)  If you have something planned, please contact Natalie to avoid losing out on event due to red tape.  email:  info@clarensbrewery.co.za

Both Garth Brook and Mandy Prior have been in discussion with the relevant authorities, and are following up on this matter to establish exactly what kind of events need to follow all this red tape.  (It seems that if your event cannot host more than 2000 people these regulations do not apply). We will keep you informed as and when we receive further information.


THIS WEEKEND:

Music: 1st August, 2014: Amigo’s Restaurant:  (evening)Denzle and OB 2nd August 2014: Amigo’s Restaurant:   (afternoon and evening) OB Artichoke:  (evening) Ric and Vic   Art: Robert Badenhorst Gallery: Exhibition and painting demonstrations by Ryan and Jodie Loubser Go to the Events page on the website to see samples of their artwork.     Rugby: rugby


Restaurant Specials

Artichoke:  A great new speciality: LARGE savoury pancakes with chips and salad (or two sweet pancakes)  from 11 to 5 o’ clock daily.

Monday:  Protea Hotel: 17h00 – 19h00:  Soup and Sherry specials (R35) includes assorted breads and and the 1st sherry free.We also have periodic cake specials at R35 for cake and coffee/hot chocolate/cuppachino.Monday – Friday:  The Posthouse breakfast! Sart the day on the right note.  The Posthouse Breakfast ranges from R22 – R30, and includes tea and coffee.

Wednesday:

Friends Happy Hour from 20h00 to 21h00.  Live music.

Wednesday:  Brambleberry @ The Ash (Old Cranford):  Burger and Pizza Specials

Thursday:   Golden Age Day at Bon Appetit Bistro: (Rosemary Centre) Every Thursday (except Public Holidays) is now “Golden Age Day” @ Bon Appetit Bistro. If you are in the Golden Age (over 65 years old), come enjoy Breakfast (served all day), a light lunch, tea, coffee or cake and get 10% discount on your bill.  Open from 9.30am till 4.00pm.

Thursday:  Brambleberry:  Happy Hour 17h30 to 18h30 followed by two-course meal special

Friday:  Courtyard: Specials at the Cafe every friday from 12 noon, and at the Restaurant every friday evening from 18h00

Friday:  The Highlander: Happy Hour from 17h30 to 18h30. Need to make a booking?   Click here for a list of Restaurant telephone numbers

SundayProtea Hotel:  First Sunday of every month, carvery at the Protea Hotel. Please book in advance to avoid disappointment. Price R125  (Ph: 058 256 1212)


Community:  Get together to Celebrate Theresse’s life: 16th August, 2014

It is a huge lost to everyone who knew Theresse. She will be missed by her family, friends and all of the Clarens Community. To celebrate her life on Saturday 16/08/2014. Everyone is invited but a special request is that all bikers will attend this day with Dave and all family and friends to celebrate Theresse’s life.

Please contact me regarding the arrange with the bikes on 0847008558/Clarens Pharmacy at 0582561852 or clarenspharmacy@gmail.com

Biking oil was in her blood,

Petrol flowing through her heart.

Throttle reving but the flood, Meant their engine Wouldn’t start.

The exhaust sounding rather rough, Its noise as cutting as a knife. The gallant spark not quite enough, To fire their engine into life.

The key was turned, the button pushed, Expecting now a biking roar, But the engine … knackered … bushed, Wouldn’t function any more.

Theresse has died but still, her soul rides onward to the west. Her wheels role onward, vale and hill, She soon will find eternal rest.

So we’ll mount up and onward ride, Remembring well the one who died. Towards the sunset on our road, Our biker friend who’s gone before.

Funeral poem for a biker

© 2010 Dick Underwood


EVENTS

Visit the website Events page for further information

Women’s Day: 9th August, 2014

Mountain Breeze event


CH2 at Bon Appetit: 10th September, 2014CH2 Event


Macnollie:  26-27 September, 2014

 

macnollie_email_ad_2-01 (4)

  As with last year the events main sponsors are BETHLEHEM NISSAN, WELKOM NISSAN, AND UD TRUCKS (WELKOM NISSAN) Have a look at the Events Page on the website or click on the links below. 26th September, 2014: Clay pigeon shooting (Clarens Golf club) 27th September, 2014:  Macnollie Challenge


Events:  Further afield:

Events


Alecta pumila

Alecta pumila

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Monthly Plant of Interest”. This week we’re focusing on a member of the Scrophulariaceae (Snapdragon) family.

Alecta pumila (seona in Sesotho), is dwarf haggard appearing herb of 40-80 mm tall found scattered in grasslands, usually at higher altitudes on cliff faces and proximate to rocky areas. This herbaceous spp. is endemic to the Eastern Mountain Region and grows from the Eastern Cape to Botswana at altitudes of between 1650 – 1980 m A.S.L.

A. pumila is a hemiparasitic herb meaning that it survives through 1 of 2 strategies: reliance on a grass host for nourishment or alternatively through photosynthesis as most plants do. The Latin Alektor (from which Alectra is derived), means rooster or cock, in reference to the yellow-orange colouration of the inflorescence often observed on the birds plumage. Members of the genus turn dark purple or black if bruised. Pumila is Latin-derived for small, puny or tiny, in testament of the dwarfish stature of the plant. The photo below was taken along a section of the Leucosidea trail, and is the only known specimen to have been recorded in the Clarens Nature Reserve.

The leaves of A. pumila measure 15 by 5 mm, are overlapping, covered in fine hair, stalkless and blunt tipped. The fruit occur as purple-green and ridged capsules. The inflorescence is a compacted spike with bracts that appear to have a few teeth. The flowers are dull, sometimes mustard-orange tinged with red veins and come complete with bearded filaments. Flowering occurs from Jan-Feb. Uses:

Photography

If nothing else, this specimen makes for an attractive photography subject and is one of the less-oft observed specimens found growing in the CNR.

Conservation Status

The SANBI conservation status for A. pumila is listed as Least concern.

Damien1-100x100Article and photography

by Damien Coulson

Head ranger Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Click here to learn more about the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Click here to become a member of the Clarens Village Conservancy

Letter to all Clarenites: re CTF

Valerie Kneppert

Bon Appetit Deli & Bistro

Studio 28 Clarens

Letter to all Clarenites & Business owners

Dear All,

As a business owner in Clarens, I am very happy to see that the Clarens Tourism Forum is meeting again next Tuesday to discuss the future.

I have been an avid supporter of the CTF since it was started by a few some 3 1/2 years ago.

These people, all volunteers, have given their time and energy to promote Clarens as a destination. With very little ressources, they have attended as many shows as possible, invited and looked after the media, organized events, and so on.

Without their dedication, our little town and its surroundings would not be so well known and popular.

Yes, there have been some mistakes, but seeing that the members of the CTF exco are all volunteers and not professional marketers (except perhaps for the Chairman, Victor Mokoena, and how lucky are we to have him on board!), I believe they have done a great job.

Each year, I attend the few CTF meetings, and am always shocked at how few Clarenites, and especially business owners, attend.

Our local economy relies mainly on tourism and Clarenites do not see fit to support the CTF?

Come on people, get your priorities right!

No tourism in Clarens = no income, no business, no jobs.

All will suffer, rich and poor, black and white. And not only the people involved in the hospitality business….everyone.

Some might say that Clarens is well known and does not need to be marketed more. Look at Coca Cola, have they stopped marketing?

The CTF can certainly bring more visitors to the town by promoting Clarens not only as a weekend destination, but also as a lovely place where to spend time during the week. We could all do with more business from Monday to Friday!

But all this does not happen just like that!

The CTF needs funds and support. Hopefully Free State Tourism will finally provide mcuh needed help.

And if they do not, we, as Clarens business owners, must support an organization that is vital to the survival of our village.

So please Clarenites, make an effort and attend the Clarens Tourism Forum meeting on Tuesday 29th July 2014 at 4pm at Mont D’or hotel and support them.

Our future depends on the community’s marketing effort.

Kind regards

Valerie Kneppert

Bon Appetit

Studio 28 Clarens