TOURISM – CALL FOR A RETHINK
“The way in which we market South Africa desperately needs to be changed.” The new chairman of Satour, Liz Wesby-Nunn, said at a recent National Tourism Conference in Stellenbosch that tourism was a holistic product and needed to be marketed more efficiently and effectively throughout the country. “We all have to be part of tourism and we have a social responsibility to change. Our economy depends on it. Satour aims to change the dynamics of tourism in South Africa. We have moved from eco-tourism and are concentrating on culture for the next three years. We will streamline, reorganise and refocus to meet market demands. We all have to broaden our minds, become lateral in our vision and change our marketing ideas to make tourism work to best advantage for everyone.”
FEES VIR BEAUFORT-WES
Beaufort-Wes Toerismeburo is druk besig om ‘n weeklange dorpsfees te reel vanaf 31 Oktober tot 8 November. Om te begin span hulle in saam met die Rotariers en reel ‘n “Bierfest” en wildsfees by die skougronde. Daarna is dit ‘n tyd van musiek, koor-kompetisies, danse, kinderpartytjies, mode-parades, blomme- en hondeskoue totdat dit die hoogtepunt – ‘n spesiale verjaarsdag partytjie vir Professor Chris Barnard – bereik word. En, dis ook nie al nie. Straatoptogte en donkiekarritte word beplan sowel as kuns- en fotokompetisies. “Dit gaan ‘n week van pret wees en ‘n fees soos min,” se Toerismeburo voorsitter Hilary Steven-Jennings. “Jare gelede was Beaufort-Wes bekend vir prettige feeste. Dit het begin met die Van Riebeekfees van 1852, elke jubileum van Koninging Victoria is gevier, sowel as uniewording in 1910 en vrede na die wereldoorloë. Elke keer was ‘n geleentheid van jolyt en ons wil graag hê hierdie gees moet voortbestaan.”
SHARING VELD EXPERIENCE
Prince Albert ecologists Drs Sue and Richard Dean recently visited the USA and Germany to share knowledge on veld management. In the States Sue was a guest speaker at a major conference in Tuscon. She discussed extension methods based on their recently published Karoo veld management guide. Several books were sold and many orders received as the climate of that region is similar to that of the Karoo. “There were interesting sessions on subsistance farming and ways of evaluating needs based on community input and involvement,” said Dr Dean. The conference, attended by over 250 delegates, was organised by the US Department of Agriculture’s Bureau of Land Management. In Germany they discussed the Karoo with students who plan to visit and conduct research projects.
STANDING COMMITTEES MEET
Tourism is on the roll in the Western Cape Province. The new standing committees on Marketing and Development have held their first meetings. The Central Karoo’s interests are being served by Leighton Hare (Development) and Herman de Witt, who has replaced Rose Willis on Marketing. These committees have elected chairmen who will also serve on the new Western Cape Tourism Board. The Board has met, and its stated aim is to ensure that the province maintains its top status in South African tourism.
DUISENDE HOOP OM TE KUIER
Die herdenking van die Boere-oorlog in 1999 gaan talle buitelanders na Suid-Afrika lok. Kragte word non op streek- en nasionale vlak ingespan om toerisme bevorderingskomitees op die been te bring. Kol. Frik Jacobs, van die Oorlogsmuseum in Bloemfontein, sê die herdenking van die oorlog. wat ‘n waterskeidende geheurtenis in die geskiedenis van Suid-Afrika vas, gaan nogal ‘n groot geleentheid wees. Duisende soldate het gekom om hier te veg en duisende het gesneuwel. Dit was een van Britanje se mees veeleisende oorloë. “Nasate van soldate sal vanaf lande soos Kanada, Australië, Nieu-Seeland, Skotland en Engeland na Suid-Afrika toe kom om slagvelde en grafte te besoek,” het Kol Jacobs gesê.
TALKS ON BOER WAR PLANS
Western Cape Anglo-Boer War Centenary Planning Committees will meet at De Roode Kat in Cape Town, on June 10, at 19h30. The aim is to discuss and co-ordinate all arrangements being made to commemorate this historic event in this province and along its borders.
OP SOEK NA DIE SKOTTE
Nadine Zylstra is op soek na die Skotte wat vroeer jare in Beaufort-Wes gewoon het. Sy is besig om ‘n TV drama oor die dorp te skryf en het onlangs besoek afgelê om meer inligting te bekom oor die Skotse predikante, die “Skotse dokter” James Christie, wie Clyde House gebou het, en sy neef, Avon Bruce Brand, ‘n lyfwag van Koningin Victoria, wie verantwoordelik was vir die bou van Springfonteindam net noord van die dorp. Beaufort-Wes se eerste landdros, John Baird was ook ‘n Skot, asook I C Anderson, ‘n lid van die bank, wat as stadsklerk aangestel is, maar wie na net een maand bedank het. “In die ou dae was daar talle Skotte op die platteland, en ons weef graaf hul stories in ons drama in,” se Nadine.
PRINCE ALBERT WRITER HITS BEST SELLER LIST
Struik’s recently published “South Africa – A Visual Celebration”, by Elaine Hurford of Prince Albert, has reached the best seller list. A European publisher has also bought rights to 25 000 German copies – the original English print order was 20 000. Copies of this book, illustrated by leading South African photographers, are available at the Prince Albert Tourism Bureau. Elaine has written two other travel books, “Magnificent South Africa” and “S A Magic Land,” which was translated into French and German.
OP DIE SPOOR VAN GISTER
Bekende skrywer van Prins Albert geskiedenis, Frieda Haak, is weer op die spoor van die verlede. Sy het onlangs ‘n versoek aan alle ou inwoners gerig om “net een bladsy te skryf oor herinneringe aan my jeugjare.” Op die manier sal ons baie belangrike brokkies oor die dorp se geskiedenis vaslê. Die wat lus het vir gesels kan hul stories op band opneem en ek sal dit self skryf vir ‘n boek wat ek later vanjaar wil uitgee,” se sy.
LITTLE BOY IN THE CLOUDS
A man who was once fined £1 by a mounted policeman in Meiringspoort for driving a Model A Ford without a licence, recently came back for a look at his boyhood home, Beaufort West. Ivan de Villiers, now 83, said oddly he was allowed to drive that same Model A to De Rust to pay the fine and bring his friends home, across the plains, still without a licence. Only four years old and sitting on his father’s lap, Ivan soared over Springfontein Dam in a De Havilland DH9 in 1925. From up there the Karoo, to a little boy, seemed an awesome and huge place, bigger than when you stood on the ground but strangely, the church steeple appeared shorter. In those days the town’s water supply was controlled by one ball valve. And the thing had the habit of jamming quite frequently. So when the town’s taps ran dry his father, a councillor, considered it cheaper and quicker for Ivan to deal with the offending device and he was dispatched to the old North End waterhouse, which in those days had a roof. But, to Ivan, one memory remains as vivid and enchanting as ever. “There was one night of pure magic, when the street lights were switched on for the very first time. It was unbelievable, quite fantastic.”
SKOLE WERK HARD
Spanne van Beaufort-Wes skole werk alreeds hard op hul projekte vir die Nasionale Jeug Simposium. Wenners word in September na Golden Gate gestuur Projekte is gemik op natuurbewaring , beter omgewingskennis en opknapping van die dorp se ingange.
A REBEL DIES FAR FROM THE MOUNTAINS OF HOME
The “wild lads” of Beaufort West in the late 1800s has long been a favourite subject among writers. And the wildest of the wild was said to be a certain Dan Darvey, nicknamed “Mad Dan” and called “Dan-jou-duiwel” by his mother. He was known as a terrible tease and prankster. He exasperated the dominee and terrorised school masters. Dan once fired a shot over the head of a boy who knelt down to quench his thirst at a pond. The startled lad fell into the water and, while his clothes were spread out to dry, he spent hours walking around clad only in The Courier, the local newspaper. Dan was greatly amused. At the tender age of 14 he was found lying under a wagon to “get a better view of the lady’s legs.” Quite unrepentant in those demure days of long skirts, he admitted often “checking out the merchandise” in this manner. Dan joined the Cape rebels in 1900. As a young Boer soldier he was credited with many deeds of great bravery and daring. He survived the Anglo-Boer War without a scratch, but at the war’s end could not settle down, so went to America. In Mexico he joined the revolution, and there ironic fate took a hand. Dan was captured, tried as a rebel and executed. The news filled Beaufort West with great sadness. The town had greatly loved its “wild” son.
Drie afgevaardigdes van Colesberg het onlangs kom kers opsteek by die Sentrale Karoo Toerismekantoor. Hulle wou die stigting van ‘n professionele dorpstoerisme buro met Rose Willis bespreek asook nadere samewerking met die promovering van die N1 roete. Hulle was Belinda Gordon, kuratrise van die Kempen Museum, wie verantwoordelik is vir die verskaffing van toeriste inligting, Tietse Vorster, einaar van die Kuier Huisies en sakeman, Philip Fourie.
A POPULAR PLACE TO MEET
Prince Albert has become a popular conferences venue. Among those scheduled for September are The Arid Zone Ecology Forum and an Eco-tourism Workshop facilitated by Professor Richard Cowling, Director of the Plant Conservation Institute at the University of Cape Town
MOTORBIKE ADVENTURE FROM CAPE TO CAIRO
The old overland route from Cape Town to Cairo fell into disuse long ago. Yet in days of yore, this was a dusty, exciting, romantic road. It passed world famous spots such as Matjiesfontein, ran through Beaufort West and snaked along to exotic-sounding North African destinations. Tours for Africa, a Johannesburg-based company, decided to rediscover the excitement of this route, so they arranged what they hail as the “ultimate overland adventure”, using BMW motorcycles. A team of 35 motorcyclists and six pillion passengers left Cape Town on May 31 on a trip that will take them through South Africa, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Malawi, Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and across the Nubian Desert of Sudan en route to Egypt. The aim is to complete the 10 500 km trip to Cairo by June 30 after visiting Zanzibar, Dar-es-Salaam, Nairobi and Addis Ababa, among others. This is the biggest-ever event of its kind and the first South African trans-continental initiative with motorcycles. It has sanction and support at the highest level in every country, and will be covered by local and international newspapers, journals, radio and TV. The team, which includes doctors, architects, financiers, company directors and a lawyer, is supported by medical and logistical personnel. First stop was the Karoo National Park, where Beaufort West Tourism Bureau laid on a traditional spread and typical Karoo welcome. Making this epic journey were Dutch, British, Austrian, American, Swiss, Danish, German and South African motorcyclists. The youngest was 21, the oldest 71. Most had never seen the Karoo.
EEUFEES VIR FRANSIE PIENAAR
Die Fransie Pienaar Museum in Prins Albert vier vanjaar eeufees. Die stigter was 100-jaar gelede gebore en as Francina Elizabeth Harmse gedoop. Op 19-jarige ouderdom is sy met Gideon Pienaar getroud en lank voor die bewaring van erfenis in ‘n landwye veldtog ontwikkel het, het sy ‘n uiters kosbare versameling van artikels in die dorp begin opbou. Dit het uit talle kamertjies gegroei todat dit uiteindelik in die ou Haak-familiehuis te ruste gekom het. Die voile geskiedenis van hierdie interessante, onpretensieuse vrou en haar liefde vir haar dorp word in die museum vir haar eeufees uitgebeeld. Dit is beslis ‘a besoek werd.
DIAMOND OF THE DESERT
The South African Library recently acquired some of the papers of Dr Frank Bradlow, and among them is a diary that gives a charming account of early Beaufort West. It was written in 1870 by a Mr Marais, who was travelling from Stellenbosch across the Karoo to take up a position as a farm school teacher in Colesberg. “As the sun rose on June I, God flooded the day and everything around us in a sea of glory. We discovered the village of Beaufort West. At that moment it well deserved the name ‘Diamond of the Desert’, given to it by travellers. When we entered the village, many of its people were still in bed, the few that were up and walking about looked very much like half-drowned rats for the air was very cold.” Marais and his fellow travellers lodged at Hulme’s Hotel, which was “a very good place with everything as one would wish it to be in such an out of the way place as Beaufort West!”
STAP MET ‘N DESKUNDIGE
‘n Spesiale uitstappie wat belangstellendes nader aan die plante groei van die Karoo sal bring word op Oktober 3 en 4 in Prins Albert aangebied. Dit sal deur David Shearing, bekende skrywer van die gewilde boek Karoo Plante, gelei word en die doel is om mense meer bewus te maak van hulle omgewing en die prag van die Karoo. Die uitstappie word in die Klein Karoo, Tuinroete en Kaapse Skiereiland deur Die Vriende van Kirstenbosch geadverteer.