Clarens News

Weekend Weather

Oh my word it’s going to be hot. If you forget them you can get sunglasses and sunscreen at the local Pharmacy, with your liver medication…

Notes from the Editor

Big Frothy Issue – Clarens Craft Beer Festival is happening this weekend!!! At last, Oh frabjous day, Kalloo Kallay. It’s the moment we’ve all been waiting for, the gathering of the country’s top brewers here in Clarens, to share their brews, their views and their news with us, the lucky people of Clarens. And it is not only beer on offer, some of the top bands in the country will be entertaining throughout (probably more entertaining the later the day…) and the Clarens News takes great pleasure in giving you the Festival Schedule right here: Program of events

Thu 21 Feb 7pm  Food and Beer Pairing evening with:

  • 278 on Main and Darling Brew
  • Adamo and Drayman’s Brewery
  • Clementines and Cockpit Brewhouse
  • Phatt Chef and Three Skulls Brew Worx
Friday 22 Feb 12 pm  Festival opens
Friday 22 Feb 6pm  Last round call
Saturday 23 Feb 9 am  Competition judging starts
Saturday 23 Feb 10 am  Festival opens
Saturday 23 Feb 11 am  Competition judging ends
Saturday 23 Feb 3pm  Announcement of winners of Best of Show and People’s Choice
Saturday 23 Feb 6pm  Last round call
Sunday 24 Feb 10 am  Off Sales open (no serving)
Sunday 24 Feb 12 pm  Off Sales & festival closes

Music line-up

Friday 22 Feb 12 pm – 3pm  Pre-recorded easy listening music
Friday 22 Feb 3 pm – 5pm  Gail Wilson
Friday 22 Feb 5 pm – 6pm  Rooibaardt
Saturday 23 Feb 10am  Denzl & Hensie
Saturday 23 Feb 11am  Ben Dover
Saturday 23 Feb 12pm  Bacchus Nel
Saturday 23 Feb 1 pm  Vana
Saturday 23 Feb 2 pm  Rick & Friends
Saturday 23 Feb 3 pm  Grumpy Old Men
Saturday 23 Feb 4 pm  Voilet Somedays
Saturday 23 Feb 5 pm  Rooibaardt

But it isn’t all about the beer and music (What? I hear you cry, there’s more???) Many of Clarens’s best restaurants are teaming up with brewers to do food and beer pairings (we’re not just talking about steak and ale pie now) and to choose your grub for Friday night, here is a list of what is on offer

 278 on Main Beef and Ale Pies, Beef Boboti in Filo, Vegetable Samoosas, Vegetable Boboti in Filo, Mini Sticky chicken kebabs, Sweet Bramble Berry Pies, Sweet Nuts and Spicy Popcorn
 Clementines Restaurant Wraps with julienne veggies in a soy, coriander and sesame dressing. Add chicken or beef to your taste
 Adamo Restaurant Coconut Crusted Hake Nuggets and Fries topped with Tartar Sauce served in a paper cone and Spicy Chicken Nuggets and Fries topped with Sweet Chilli Cheese Sauce served in a paper cone.
 Café XLNT Gourmet Burgers
 Courtyard Café Marvellous macarons, chewy chocolate brownies, fantastic fudge, fingers of millionaires shortbread, toffee & muesli bars and delicious chocolate slab
 La Cerise Restaurant Goat’s cheese and Onion Marmalade Tartlets / Spinach and Feta Tartlets
 Mosaic Pizzeria Pizza slices
 Phatt Chef Restaurant Well aged sirloin steak rolls with our famous red onion pinotage marmalade , Ploughman’s platters with local cheese and pork pie
 Vito’s Restaurant Spicy Indian Curry with Sambals & Chutney served in a freshly baked pita bread

My mouth is watering, but to see the full menus of 4 of the participating venues, go to where I am republishing them With the Clarens Craft Beer Festival on the whole weekend, I took the precaution of phoning Benita at the local Pharmacy to check that they have enough Prohep in stock. She assures me that she has laid in extra provisions of that and Essensual, some other babelas mutis and even has a special on sunglasses for those who might need 2 pairs by the morning after. The pharmacy will definitely be open on Sunday morning, and she can be phoned on 058-2561852. While we’re on the topic of precautionary measures (note to the river guides, they also offer family planning precautions at the pharmacy, but that’s not what we’re talking about here…), those fantastic people at Maluti Footprints are making sure that you have no excuse to crash your car this weekend. They are running a shuttle service from Bethlehem (Frontier Casino and the Loft Guesthouse departure points) and back, leaving there at 9.30 both Friday and Saturday, for those who like an early start to their drinking, and (by arrangement) they can shuttle you to wherever you are staying in and around Clarens at a minimal fee. Phone them on 0829213894 and speak to Maureen.

In other News:

With the lazy days of Summer drawing to an end, it’s time to go and enjoy the Conservancy dam, and make use of as many outdoor activities as possible. Maybe the kids aren’t so keen on beer (?), send them white water rafting, horse riding or quad biking or at the very least a good swimAlthough that message may have sounded like it came from the Free State Tourism Ass, it didn’t. They are embroiled in their own soup it seems: In other news, the Free State Tourism department has come under fire for sponsorship of millions of rands to non-existent events and competitions. The FS500 Nascar Free State Tourism event received R4.5 million and another R4.2 million was given to the organizer of a soccer event that has yet to be held… read Carmel Rickard’s less than thrilled blog here and if you can find any actual info about either of these events, please let me know. I certainly haven’t found anything more than a defunct facebook page for the FS500 – have we been ripped again? Also of interest is the NEWS24 story here I don’t know who to complain to, but if you find out, let me know and let’s put some shame to a face…


Who owns what? I was shocked to hear that a French company is trying to claim Intellectual Property Rights over Rooibos, the quintessentially South African tea. If they are successful we will no longer have the naming rights over our own herbaceous refreshment. Does this mean that as a counter measure we should start producing our own Clarens Champagne? For more on this have a look at


Well, it’s out, such as it is. I personally like the new look and feel and hope you will too. It will be available all over Clarens, especially at the Route 66 petrol station (between Grouse and Bon Appetit, in front of the Saverite store) and possibly from the very tall man who will be wandering about claiming to be the editor’s Big Brother…


This weekend also sees the Free State Junior Golf Championships come to Clarens to see about 100 juniors fight it out for places in the Free State Team, competing for the prestige of representing SA on the world stage. The circuit of 12 towns gives the kids opportunity to win merit points to become National competitors in the under 11 and under 19 divisions. Clarens boy Thinus Roslee (currently lying 4th in the u/19s) is hoping to advance on home grounds, and we will keep you posted with the results as they happen. (photos and results will be on In other golf news, David Mofokeng the young local prodigy who has just turned Pro, is off to Pretoria on Sunday to take part in the Tshwane Open pre qualifiers, where the young Pro hopes to stake his claim on the national circuit. Special thanks to Janice from the Highlander, and the Clarens Golf Club for helping to make his dream reality.


Featured game: Sharks vs Cheetahs 17h00 Saturday Looks to be a cracker of an opening Super 15 game for both teams, and one which will tear my heart as an ex Durban boy, who will I shout for? Patrick Lambie or Johan Goosen, fresh back from the most brilliant season last year, till he was injured scoring the try of the year. With the somewhat Frans Steyn captaining the Sharks for the first time, I will find out myself if I have finally become a Vrystaater… Game on the big screen at Artichoke, drinks specials to be announced on the day… Of course this will be a tough decision, since the amazing Rooibaart will be playing at the same time on the square, gentlemen, start your PVRs


Bethlehem Kine is live and operational again, so if you love the big screen, the smell of popcorn, cuddling in the back row or just a good old night out at the movies, here’s what is happening this week: Life of Pi The Hobbit Here comes the Boom Pretville (locally made and marketed under our very noses) To find out times, make bookings etc call them on 0583034333 I saw Life of Pi the other evening, and let me tell you, it is brilliant. An incredible story about a man and a tiger, in a lifeboat, shipwrecked and learning about themselves in a deep metaphor about life and self. Amazing special effects (at least I hope they were special effects…) and a headscratcher of an ending that will wake you up the next morning, wondering about exactly what is what, not just in the movie but in your own life. Highly recommended.

Live Music and Specials

Artichoke Grilled Halloumi R35 Chicken Livers R35 Eischbein with Mustard Italian sauce R75 350gm T-Bone R70 Friday night Werner from Jbg, Saturday Lunch Deon Souti, Saturday night Gael (after the rugby) Bon Appetit Bistro! Bon Appetit will be open until 9pm on Saturday 23rd February Boerewors or Chicken Kebab, roll and salad for R 50 per person! Bring you own alcoholic beverage. No corkage fee!

Street Cafe Specials this weekend Sat 23rd We will be hosting Slipstream with a Castle Lite promo as well as a Red Square promo with promo girls and Specials & Much much more! Sun the 24th we will be hosting Christiaan van Zyl. Next week Monday 25th will be Slipstream and Happy Hour Mondays and a happy hour on friday aswell… see you all thereFriends Restaurant will have Van Smith over the weekend (you can click HERE for updates as I get them)

Coming Up

9 March 2013 – The SPF Macnollie fund raising challenge. Are you a hunting, shooting fishing kind of person? Compete to raise funds for the Sector Police Forum and keep Clarens safe. Click HERE for more details Also 9th March – Bethlehem Antique Car and Machine Show at Bethlehem AirportClarens Festival of Dirt – 5-7 April 2013. Clarens X-Treme will once again be hosting this dirty weekend. The Mountain Madalas # 1 hosted by Enduro Mag will start mid morning on Saturday after the 40km mountain bike trail ride which leaves St Fort at 6am. If that is not enough, come and enjoy a 3km or 10km trail run on Sunday. Bring the whole family to St Fort for an action packed weekend with loads of entertainment for visitors and locals. The Sandstone Gorge in Ficksburg has their Steam Heritage Festival which runs from the 4th to the 12th of May this year, and promises historic trains, a Sherman Tank, vintage tractors and dozers, as well as a Model T Ford grain truck, all of which are in operation and function in conjunction with the agricultural nature of the area it inhabits. Well, maybe not the Sherman tank (I hope), but all the rest. In the meantime, to read their latest Newsletter click HERE

2013/05/04 MTN National Marathon #4 Clarens Clarens Freestate
2013/05/05 Nissan National Half Marathon #4 Clarens Clarens Freestate

AFRI SKI – it’s almost that time again – July 11 – July 14 A ski slalom and giant slalom race 4 children , juniors, seniors and masters. For accomodation and details contact Stephan at Gone skiing 0861754669 Ski racing is a fun way to improve your skiing.

Captain Naas Viljoen, Sector Police Forum, Clarens

Macnollie fundraising initiative

Planning and logistics are in place, the dams have been organized, the pre-event registration is going to include free beer at the Brewery, and now we need 30 brave contestants to compete for the sake of the SPF. The News took little offence at the statement that most email readers are bunny huggers, knowing that it’s readers will enter and show the hunting shooting fishing fraternity what’s what on the day. I’m hoping that a bunny hugging Clarens News reader will win the competition, and release the prize animal to graze under guard of the reservists on the Clarens Square. To learn more click here: Read More

The Cluny Animal Trust

The Cluny Animal Trust does fantastic work treating animals from the townships of several towns. They always need support to keep their work happening, and this is your opportunity to help The Cluny sms line details: SMS ‘CAT’ to 38008 Each sms cost R10 rand. Free sms’s do not apply. Thank you for the support

Council Meeting Feedback

14th February Council Report-Back, to the Community of Ward 20. Firstly, may I say a big thank you to those of you that attended the Council Meeting. I cannot stress how important it is, particularly at this time in the country, to show that we are a community that pays attention and is involved in rulings that affect Ward 20. As always, Council started late – the allowable time is 15mins. – this time, the excuse was the “stop and go”. The audibility of the meeting will test any person’s hearing ability. Unfortunately a sound system is not in the budget!! After listening to the congratulations for Nigeria, every soccer team that played etc., etc. we finally moved onto the Items of the meeting. Mandy Prior raises some very pertinent questions in the rest of her report back, for the full text please clickHERE, and spare a thought for how her Valentines day was spent…


Ornithological Notes:

Christmas is just 191 shopping days away, so this is a good week to lay something bye.   Or someone, depending on your inclination.    Or luck.   More importantly, the Clarens Craft Beer Festival starts tomorrow with no end in sight for the plethora of hangovers expected on the Square.   As the good and the great (and the thirsty) flock into town, our thoughts turn to Cynthia, the white swan reported missing from the zoo at Bruce Weyer’s little weekend hideaway on the lake, just last week.   Cynth was thought to be nesting and so concerns were muted.   But the discovery, by your earnest scribe, of some VERY LARGE white feathers on the trail above the village and a set of what might be liberally described as VERY BIG footprints disappearing into the undergrowth, paint a very different picture. To read the rest of this weeks ravings, and to discover the potential fate of our feathered friend, please clickHERE

Clarens Village Conservancy

What to do in the event of a Structural fire, click on the image above. And the RECYCLING CENTRE is in dire straits, desperately in need of someone to supervise the Centre and organize pick up of material. Without someone helping this project may well collapse. Please click HERE to read more

Things to do in Clarens


The village is filled with an abundance of shopping, to see some of the local stores (no franchises) click HERE


Tasty treats, snacks and picnic basket fillers available HERE


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


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


Turn that special moment into the occasion of a lifetime, clickHERE


And celebrate the event with an amazing adventure by clicking HERE


Why leave, you’re already here, so click HERE to see what is available


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


For those of you who have already made the best decision,  HERE are the people who can make things even better


The numbers everyone should have are all available rightHERE.

Copyright © 2013 Clarens News, All rights reserved.
Email Marketing Powered by MailChimp