Kirstenbosch Summer Concert Line-Up 2015

It’s time for the new season of Kirstenbosch Summer Concerts, so get your picnic baskets and blankets ready! The annual concert series is a highlight on Cape Town’s musical calendar and attracts thousands of fans every year. My picks for this season include Just Jinjer, The Cape Philharmonic Orchestra, Beatenberg, Mi Casa and Jeremy Loops. Regulars like Prime Circle, The Parlotones, Goldfish and Freshlyground are sure to be big hits as well.

kirstenbosch-concerts-2015

Here’s the line-up:

  • 23 November 2014: The Soil
    Adults: R135, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R100, Botanical Society members (with card): R120
  • 30 November 2014: National Youth Orchestra 50th Birthday Concert with Barbara Hendricks (USA)
    Adults: R135, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R100, Botanical Society members (with card): R120
  • 4 & 5 December 2014: The Lumineers
    Check WebTickets for pricing
  •  7 December 2014: Just Jinjer
    Adults: R135, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R100, Botanical Society members (with card): R120
  •  14 December 2014: Oliver Mtukudzi (ZIM)
    Adults: R135, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R100, Botanical Society members (with card): R120
  •  18, 19, 20, 21 December 2014: Kirstenbosch Carols
    Price: TBC
  •  28 December 2014: Hot Water
    Adults: R100, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R75, Botanical Society members (with card): R90
  •  31 December 2014: New Year’s Eve concert: Mango Groove & Arno Carstens
    Check WebTickets for pricing
  •  4 January 2015: Prime Circle
    Adults: R135, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R100, Botanical Society members (with card): R120
  •  11 January 2015: The Parlotones
    Adults: R160, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R130, Botanical Society members (with card): R140
  •  18 January 2015: Matthew Mole & Tailor
    Adults: R135, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R100, Botanical Society members (with card): R120
  •  25 January 2015: Jimmy Nevis
    Adults: R135, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R100, Botanical Society members (with card): R120
  •  1 February 2015: The Cape Philharmonic Orchestra
    Adults: R135, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R100, Botanical Society members (with card): R120
  •  8 February 2015: Freshlyground
    Adults: R135, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R100, Botanical Society members (with card): R120
  •  15 February 2015: TBC
  •  22 February 2015: Cape Town Folk ‘n Acoustic Music Festival
    Adults: R100, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R75, Botanical Society members (with card): R90
  •  1 March 2015: Goldfish
    Adults: R135, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R100, Botanical Society members (with card): R120
  •  8 March 2015: Mi Casa
    Adults: R135, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R100, Botanical Society members (with card): R120
  •  15 March 2015: Al Bairre & Shortstraw
    Adults: R100, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R75, Botanical Society members (with card): R90
  •  21 March 2015: TBC
  •  22 March 2015: Beatenberg & Gangs of Ballet
    Adults: R100, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R75, Botanical Society members (with card): R90
  •  29 March 2015: Johnny Clegg
    Adults: R160, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R130, Botanical Society members (with card): R140
  •  5 April 2015: Jeremy Loops
    Adults: R135, Youth (6-21 yrs with ID): R100, Botanical Society members (with card): R120

Tickets are available online at WebTickets. For the Sunday concerts, gates open at 16h00 and the music starts at 17h30 and ends at 19h00. Check out your ticket details for the starting times etc for the other shows.

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Movember 2014

With November just around the corner, guys all over the world are gearing up for Movember. If there’s ever a time to grow that epic moustache, then this is your opportunity and it’s all for a good cause. Movember aims to change the face of men’s health by getting men to grow moustaches for the month while raising funds and awareness for men’s health issues, including prostate and testicular cancers – putting a fun twist on a serious topic and using the moustache as a catalyst to drive awareness.

movember-2014-a

This year’s theme is ‘Made in Movember’ and registration is open on the new look website www.movember.com. When you sign up, there is the choice to participate as an individual or to start or join a team – which has proven to be more fun and effective in creating awareness. The next step is to start clean shaven on 1 November and grow your moustache for the month, pledging funds and sponsorship in the process. Mo Sistas can also sign up and pledge their support on www.movember.com, making up 10% of the sign ups.

movember-2014-b

Funds raised go towards survivorship and research programmes that are developed in conjunction with Movember South Africa’s men’s health partner, the Cancer Association of South Africa (CANSA). These programmes, in their pilot phases, aim to provide men with the best choices and treatment options available.

If you’re signing up, then take note of these rules:

  1. Every year Mo Bros and Mo Sistas have to re-register from 15 September when the new campaign and website goes live. Each Mo Bro must begin the 1st of Movember with a clean shaven face, growing and grooming a moustache for the month – the helpful style guide on the website will help you choose your ideal ‘home grown’ moustache.
  2. For the entire month of Movember each Mo Bro must grow and groom a moustache.
  3. There is to be no joining of the Mo to your side burns. That’s considered a beard.
  4. There is to be no joining of the handlebars to your chin. That’s considered a goatee.
  5. Each Mo Bro must conduct himself like a true gentleman.

Good luck!

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Season of Sauvignon @ Durbanville Hills: 25 & 26 October 2014

Durbanville Hills makes one of my favourite Sauvignon Blancs – its crisp finish is just perfect for the summer months. The popular DH Sauvignon Blanc will be featured, along with others at Season of Sauvignon at Durbanville Hills winery on 25 and 26 October 2014. The annual festival features the best of the Durbanville wine region with various wine estates taking part.

season-of-sauvignon-2014

Durbanville Hills will offer a variety of foods, along with wine tastings of Durbanville Hills’ recently released Sauvignon Blancs and those from other wineries in the Durbanville valley. There will be scheduled tasting sessions on both days which include a sensory wine tasting consisting of an assortment of nibbles paired with a selection of Durbanville Hills’ wines to highlight the effect of certain taste on the wines.

The Durbanville Hills Restaurant will be open for breakfast and lunch and you can pre-book picnic baskets to enjoy whilst the live music keeps you company as you stretch out on the lawn in the shade of the olive grove. There’ll be fun activities for the kids and the Currie Cup final will be screened as well on the Saturday.

Entry to the event is free. Wine tastings cost R50 and includes a crystal glass to take home. The sensory tastings cost R40 each. Bookings are essential for picnics, the sensory wine tastings, and also for breakfast and lunch in the restaurant. For more information or to book contact Simone Brown on 021 558 1300 or info@durbanvillehills.co.za.

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Food and wine pairings at Leopard’s Leap Family Vineyards

Leopard’s Leap Family Vineyards in Franschhoek is now hosting food and wine pairings that are definitely worth a try. Guests can join one of Leopard’s Leap’s knowledgeable and enthusiastic Wine Tasting Ambassadors on Friday mornings for the Culinaria Food and Wine Pairing – a tasting of the six wines in the Leopard’s Leap Culinaria Collection, each paired with an example of an ideal food partner.

leopards-leap-food-wine-pairing

All the wines in the Culinaria Collection are based on traditional French blends and are made with the specific focus of being exceptional partners to food. The Culinaria Food and Wine Pairing shows these wines with food that illustrates the skill of food and wine pairing, offering guests the ideal opportunity to enjoy well-matched combinations while getting to know the fundamentals behind making informed dinner table choices.

Each pairing consists of:

  • The Brut-style Culinaria Methôde Cap Classique sparkling wine made from the traditional Champagne cultivars, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Mineur, matching the creaminess and zest of a Sweetcorn soup with innovative MCC-infused jellies.
  • The Culinaria Chenin Blanc Grenache Blanc blend based on the wines of the Loir, paired with the notoriously difficult tomato, in a tomato jelly with tomato and coriander concasse.
  • The classic Bordeaux style Culinaria Grand Vin with another classic, Beef Borguignonne.
  • The spiciness and fruit of the Rhône-inspired Culinaria Shiraz Grenache echoed in a Western Cape institution – spicy lamb samosas and sweetish date chutney.
  • The Culinaria Pinot Noir Chardonnay with its Burgundy character, interestingly and expertly paired with an almond and polenta cake with cream cheese icing.
  • The very South African, Culinaria Muscat de Frontignan combined with a take on traditional Christmas pudding, a fruitcake lolly dipped in Muscat jelly.

Leopard’s Leap’s Chef, Pieter de Jager and Cellarmaster, Eugene van Zyl, have teamed up to make the pairings very informative, while providing guests with the knowledge required for future food and wine choices.

Pairings take place on Fridays at 12h00 and the cost is R120 per person. Book at least 48 hours in advance by contacting reservations@leopardsleap.co.za or 021 876 8002. Note that Leopard’s Leap Family Vineyards is closed on Christian religions holidays.

For more information on what’s happening at Leopard’s Leap Family Vineyards, please visit www.leopardsleap.co.za or contact Harry Joubert at 021 876 8002 or hj.marketing@leopardsleap.co.za.

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Jacques Kallis Foundation – Changing Lives with the Red Leather Ball

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – Jacques Kallis is the best cricketer I have had the privilege of seeing play the game. With a magnificent career behind him, he continues to contribute to South African cricket with the Jacques Kallis Foundation.

jacques-kallis-foundation

At the age of 30, Kallis used the full R550 000 raised from a benefit year in 2006 to establish the foundation. It aids in financing educational and cricketing opportunities for promising scholars from disadvantaged backgrounds. The criteria for selection of these scholars includes academic soundness, financial need and cricketing potential.

The Foundation’s goal is to expand its reach by changing the lives of 100 boys, creating solid, intellectual individuals who have the strategic intelligence to work their way out of a tricky game. Crafting well-rounded individuals with a balanced approach to life is also part of the process.

Jacques Kallis was the broad-shouldered colossus of the South African cricket team, who has both a rock-solid technique and a mind impervious to distraction. A right-handed batsman and right-arm fast-medium swing bowler, he’s known as one of the greatest all-rounders in the history of the game.

‘Providing a platform for others to have equal opportunities and education that I had, has always been at the forefront of my mind’ shares Jacques Kallis. ‘I wanted to make a difference by focusing on helping talented young individuals who cannot afford private schooling.’ adds Kallis.

One of the Foundation’s beneficiaries – a scholar from Jacques’s Alma Mater, Wynberg Boy’s High, is Bhoteke Mbombi, who is currently pursuing his BSc Honours degree in Biokinetics, having attained a degree from University of Stellenbosch in 2012.

The scholarship from the foundation covers the complete costs of tuition fees, boarding and cricket for the chosen candidates, amounting to an average of R70 000 per year. The funding predominately supports the child playing cricket but should they spark a fascination for rugby, the Foundation will continue to fund it.

The other schools the Foundation supports are Maritzburg College, Selborne College and Pretoria Boys High School – all of which boast proud cricketing traditions, along with excellent education.

What makes the foundation different is the personal involvement and relationship Jacques has with the children, reviewing their reports four times a year and managing their progress to ensure optimum effort is put in to achieving their level best.

Well done Jacques and good luck to the kids! For more information visit www.kallis.co.za.

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Claremont’s hidden gem… in Constantia

Whether you’re looking for a romantic night out, a family friendly restaurant or simply a place to watch the cricket with friends, The Club House at Claremont Cricket Club ticks all the boxes.

the-club-house-1

We recently enjoyed a delicious two-course meal at The Club House and were blown away – from the friendly staff and warm welcome to the tasty food (and wine). The setting was perfect with views overlooking the cricket fields and in the summer months, I’d say booking a table outside is a must. During our dinner we had two mad dogs racing around the restaurant and fields – clearly it’s animal friendly, too!

the-club-house-2For starters, we enjoyed calamari and roasted tomato and feta tartlets. The calamari was perfectly cooked, while the tartlets were made from paper-thin phyllo pastry (a welcome change from the usual heavy pastry). For our mains we both ordered the fillet – and boy was it good! We have our favourite steak joint but I think we’ve found a new favourite. It was cooked to perfection and served on a bed of creamy garlic mash and spinach. This was home cooking meets gourmet.

Sadly we left no space for dessert, even though I had my heart set on the Amarula and chocolate crème brûlée. Next time I’ll make sure I either don’t eat all day or skip the starters!

As soon as cricket season starts in the summer, we’ll be booking our table at The Club House. Although very cosy during the winter months, I’m looking forward to an al fresco dining experience!

What we ordered

For starters

Salt and pepper baby calamari with a paprika and lemon mayo

Mini roast tomato and feta tartlets

For mains

Beef fillet served on garlic mash with a side of sautéed spinach with mushroom sauce

We enjoyed a bottle of Durbanville Hills Sauvignon Blanc. The wine list caters to all but doesn’t overwhelm. If you’d like to see the full menu, click here.

the-club-house-3

Where is it located?

So, it’s not in Claremont – as you’d think. The Club House relocated to Constantia about 14 months ago. It’s in the Constantia Sports Complex just off Constantia Main Road, and you’ll find it next to the Virgin Active. Book a table by calling 021 794 6314. For more information visit http://www.theclubhouse.co.za/.

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Western Province Currie Cup rugby fixtures 2014

Western Province kick off their 2014 ABSA Currie Cup campaign with a tricky away fixture against the EP Kings. The competition has expanded to include eight teams but that doesn’t mean there are any easy matches, especially when playing away from home. After a disappointing Super Rugby campaign, the Cape Town based side will want to bounce back strongly. With the departures of stalwarts like Schalk Burger, Gio Aplon and Deon Fourie, the door is open for new stars to shine through.

dhl-western-province-rugby

Western Province Currie Cup Fixtures:

  • 8 August 2014: Eastern Province Kings vs Western Province
    Nelson Mandela Stadium, Port Elizabeth – 19h10
  • 16 August 2014: Western Province vs Blue Bulls
    Newlands, Cape Town – 14h00
  • 23 August 2014: Western Province vs Golden Lions
    Newlands, Cape Town – 17h05
  • 30 August 2014: Blue Bulls vs Western Province
    Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria – 17h05
  • 5 September 2014: Western Province vs Eastern Province Kings
    Newlands, Cape Town – 19h10
  • 13 September 2014 – Golden Lions vs Western Province
    Ellis Park, Johannesburg – 17h05
  • 20 September 2014: Western Province vs Griquas
    Newlands, Cape Town – 15h00
  • 27 September 2014: Pumas vs Western Province
    Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit
  • 4 October 2014: Free State Cheetahs vs Western Province
    Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein – 14h00
  • 11 October 2014: Western Province vs Sharks
    Newlands, Cape Town – 17h05

The Sharks are perhaps the favourites but as we all know, any one of the teams can beat their opponents on the day. Let’s bring that trophy back to the Cape. Go WP!

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See The Lumineers at Kirstenbosch: 4 & 5 December 2014

Popular folk-rock band The Lumineers will be hitting the stage at Kirstenbosch on Thursday 4 December and Friday 5 December 2014. The US band who brought you the hits ‘Hey Ho’ and ‘Stubborn Love’ are stopping over in the Mother City, with another show at the Emmarentia Dam in Johannesburg on Saturday 6 December 2014.

lumineers-kirstenbosch

With Grammy Award nominations and headline slots at some of the world’s biggest festivals, The Lumineers have certainly made name for themselves in the last few years. The core band members Wesley Schultz, Jeremiah Fraites and Neyla Pekarek effortlessly blend folk, alternative rock, Americana and indie to create their much loved sound.

Tickets for the Cape Town concerts are available from WebTickets for R465 each. Stay tuned for the exciting support line-up which will feature a number of awesome acts. The music kicks off at 18h00 and ends at 22h00. It’s all brought to you by Seed Experiences, Virgin Mobile SA and 5FM. Enjoy!

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gobii Smartphones IIP & IVP

The gobii range is getting bigger and continues to impress with good value for money. Following on the success of the e-reader and tablet range, two new gobii smartphones hit the market earlier this year and I’ve heard good feedback so far. The smartphone range currently includes a 4″ dual-core Android device and more expensive 4.5″ quad-core option.

The gobii IIP & IVP

The gobii IIP & IVP

Let’s take a look at the specs:

gobii 4″ Smartphone IIP

  • Processor: MT6572 Dual-Core @ 1.3GHz with dedicated graphics processor
  • O/S: Android version 4.2.2 (Jelly Bean)
  • Display: 4.0″ WVGA IPS (Resolution: 480 x 800) with Dragontrail glass screen
  • Storage: 4GB (Extendable up to 36GB with an external micro SD card of up to 32GB)
  • Memory: 1GB RAM
  • Camera: 5.0 Mega-Pixel rear camera (software enhanced to 8 Mega-Pixel); 0.3 Mega-Pixel front camera (software enhanced to 2 Mega-Pixel)
  • Dual SIM (accepts standard size SIM card from any network provider)
  • Connectivity: 2G/3G: GSM900/1800 and WCDMA2100; Wi-Fi: 802.11 B/G/N; Bluetooth: Ver. 4.0
  • Battery: 1150mAh Lithium Polymer Rechargeable
  • FM Range: 76 108MHZ
  • Dimensions: 123mm x 63mm x 10mm
  • Weight: 126g
  • Ports/Slots: Micro USB, AUX 3.5mm, Microphone, MicroSD (max. 32GB), SIM (Dual)

gobii 4.5″ Smartphone IVP

  • Processor: MT6582 Quad Core Cortex A9 @ 1.2 with dedicated graphics processor
  • O/S: Android version 4.2.2 (Jelly Bean)
  • Display: 4.5 FWVGA IPS (Resolution: 480 x 854) with Dragontrail glass screen
  • Storage: 8GB (Extendable up to 40GB with an external micro SD card of up to 32GB)
  • Memory: 1GB RAM
  • Camera: 5.0 Mega-Pixel rear camera (software enhanced to 8 Mega-Pixel); 0.3 Mega-Pixel front camera (software enhanced to 2 Mega-Pixel)
  • Dual SIM (accepts standard size SIM card from any network provider)
  • Connectivity: 2G/3G: GSM900/1800 and WCDMA2100; Wi-Fi: 802.11 B/G/N; Bluetooth: Ver. 4.0
  • Battery: 1700mAh Lithium Polymer; charges via USB port or wall charger
  • FM Range: 87.5 108MHZ
  • Dimensions: 132mm × 66mm × 9.8 mm
  • Weight: 156g
  • Ports/Slots: Micro USB, AUX 3.5mm, Microphone, MicroSD (max. 32GB), SIM (Dual)

Both smartphones look the part with perhaps the only ‘weakness’ being the camera quality. But that’s only when comparing to phones which are much more expensive than these two. With the IIP currently selling (at the time of writing) for R999 and the IVP for R1699 can you really complain? You’re getting an Android device with plenty of punch at a fraction of the cost of others.

I reckon if my current phone packs up, I’ll buy one of these and happily cruise along using pre-paid airtime and data, instead of getting locked into an expensive contract.

Check out the links below to buy the phones or see more info and reviews:

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Blisters for Bread Walk 2014

August is just around the corner and that means it’s Blisters for Bread time again! The charity fun walk is one of the Mother City’s most popular events with thousands of participants each year. This year’s walk takes place on Sunday 24 August 2014.

blisters-for-bread-2014

There will be no 15km option in 2014, only 5km and 10km walks. Also note that the field will be limited to 12,000 entrants, so it’s advisable to enter as soon as possible. You can enter online at http://www.topevents.co.za or pick up an entry form at one of these stores:

  • Sportsmans Warehouse – Canal Walk
  • Sportsmans Warehouse – Rondebosch
  • Sportsmans Warehouse – Sea Point
  • Sportsmans Warehouse – Tygervalley
  • Sportsmans Warehouse – West Coast

In-store entries close on 9 August 2014 and online entries close on 10 August 2014. The entry fee is R50 per person.

Funds raised go to the Peninsula School Feeding Association (PSFA), which continues to do amazing work feeding hungry learners in primary, secondary and special-needs schools across the Western Cape.

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