AUGUST ’19…… CRISP, PURE, MCGREGOR WINTER AIR,A STEAMING MUG OF FRESHLY BREWED MOCHA,WATCHING LIFE SLOWLY MOVING ALONG VOORTREKKER ST
MacGee and moi were sitting on “51’s” stoep the other day watching some of our fascinating locals parading by and skindering with Gerrard and Phillip about the magical qualities of the stone ground flour that they use in the baking of their fabulous sourdough bread and drinking their fab coffee,when we met some guests who were staying in McGregor for the weekend.They got to talking about how friendly and welcoming everybody was in the Village and it got us thinking about doing a monthly feature on the biggest,friendliest,funniest,warmest,cutest and all the est’s “McGregor Smiler Of The Month”…..all you have to do is send a selfie,a snapshot of a local doing whatever they are doing and we will publish the best shots in the next newsletter….send them to Shirley or Rhowena at firstname.lastname@example.org it’s as easy as that…..come on …send us a selfie you cuties!
“MCGREGOR GARDENERS CORNER”
CAUGHT GREEN FINGERED!
One of our indomitable, garden enthusiasts,Jenny Stipcich,organised a prickly rose pruning afternoon talk by that doyen of rose growing,Rudi Conradie from Ashton Nursery.He demonstrated the simple art of pruning roses…..mystery dispelled……actually simplicity itself.An enthusiastic group of McGregor gardeners witnessed how easy it was.After the demonstration we retired to How Bazaar and were hosted by Barbara and further questions and answers were asked of Rudi. Nothing like a glass of wine or two to help nurse a pricked finger or two.
Jenny and the McGregor Gardening Club aim to help our local gardeners with monthly educational talks by various horticultural experts,simplifying the art of plant nutrition,tree care,growing succulents.If you are interested in joining the Club or attending,contact Jenny at email@example.com She would love to hear from you. Get yourself on the mailing list now
KAROO DESERT NATIONAL BOTANICAL GARDEN OUTREACH GREENING FOR MANDELA DAY IN MCGREGOR
- New SANBI outreach garden was a Mandela Day project
- Plants selected for learning & links to the Afrikaans language
- The Breede Centre site to be officially opened at new McGregor Heritage Day Festival
(SANBI) Karoo Desert Botanical Garden undertake to fulfil its objective of outreach education of indigenous flora, by developing a new garden at a community centre in McGregor.
Recently appointed Curator of Kirstenbosch, Werner Voigt, instigated the project, which was a Mandela Day initiative. Plants were selected which offer experiential learning & links to the Afrikaans language. In this way, it is hoped that the community will gain an appreciation for qualities of indigenous flora.
Children at The Breede Centre, McGregor, were involved in the preparation & planting of the garden on July 18th as a 67 minute acknowledgement to Mandela
Werner Voigt said ‘ The SANBI (South African National Biodiversity Institute) strategy is to extend its work beyond the Botanical Gardens as places of learning. This project is one of three annual outreach commitments by Worcester’s Karoo Desert National Botanical Garden.’
Children made flowers as a creative aspect of the learning, inspired by a story of a dress that would bloom and so always be beautiful. Local McGregor artist, Robert Bramwell Jones wrote the original tale.
The official opening features as part of a new Cape-based Garden Festival, McGregor Magic, planned for Heritage Weekend (21-24 September) with a procession & performance planned. http://www.facebook.com/mcgregormagic
Hot Off The Press “Garden Club News”
DON’T MISS IT….HERBS AND BEVERAGES
The next exciting and informative, Garden Meeting will be hosted by Mariana Rabie at her lovely house on 13 August at 5pm ….. 89 Voortrekker St.( She will also be running two herb workshops at the McGregor Magic Festival in September)…..Mariana was once a herb farmer and she will be teaching us about herbs and beverages.
Book now at 076 465 5314
AUGUST, WINE OF THE MONTH
We are so lucky to have so many talented wine makers living in the village. Ilse Schutte,owner of Bemind Wines,who lives,breathes and creates fine wines, makes fine creations in a secret hideaway in Voortrekker St. Ilse is a proud McGregor founder member of the Garagista method of wine production and produces outstanding wines every year.All her grapes are basket pressed which gives her wine such a special and niche in this little village.Robert Parker,the most revered of wine writers,rates garagista wines highly in his annual pronouncements.
Bemind Cinsault 2019……… August Wine Of The Month
A lot of Cinsaut is grown in South Africa, much of which is traditionally blended with Cabernet Sauvignon. It holds a special place in the country’s viticulture alongside Pinot noir as one of the parents of Pinotage. Of all the grape varieties planted in the Cape, Cinsault has claimed a significant “Cinderella” turnaround in recent history. – Cinsault is an ancient red wine grape varietal that is believed to have its origins in the Hérault region of southern France. But it could have been brought by traders from the eastern Mediterranean.
Ilse’s superb Cinsault is from 45 year old bush vines in the Breedekloof area.The grapes are gently hand picked and then basket pressed,in the traditional manner.Gentle pressing produces superior wine.Fermented on the skins at 18C until dry. Pressed and put into barrels for 3 months. The wine that we tasted was bottled last week, 16 July.Fresh raspberry and strawberry flavours on the nose, bursting with fruits on the palate.Exquisite garnet colour is beautiful on the eye.This luscious wine is light but highly complex in flavour.Distinctly earthy with spicy notes and a lingering aftertaste.Come on Macgee,leave some for me
This gorgeous wine has an 12.8% alcohol content which makes it a scrumptious lunch time wine…..chill it well,treat it like a Pinot. “If ever you needed a wine to pair with a Kerrie Mince Vetkoek, this is the one”
In her own words………..
“My goal is to create timeless, elegant, balanced wines, that everyone will enjoy. When I open a bottle of wine, I want to enjoy it to the last drop.”
OH WOW!……”THE FAT LADY’S ARMS” OPENS HER GORGEOUS ARMS TO MCGREGOR
“CONGRATULATIONS ANDRE AND KURT”
How is that outrageous name of the new Bar and Pizza place run by Andre and Kurt….their freshly cooked,thin based pizza’s are to die for.Imaginative toppings baked in a wood fired oven are absolutely delicious…..the new meeting place to be seen has arrived in Voortrekker Street,in the old Karoux restaurant building.By the sounds of the raucous laughter and squeals of delight,emitting from the establishment…..it’s a scream a minute
Get your “Take Away Pizzas” …….available from 5:00 pm till 7:00 pm.
Or,Sit and Enjoy and bring your own bottle, join some friends at a table from 6:00 pm till 10:00 pm.
UNSUNG PERSONALITIES OF THE MONTH
Well known local personalities,Dorothy and Geoff of McGregor Backpackers quietly applied their minds in a fabulous way,just recently.The pedestrian walkway between Bree and Long Street, Buitenkant Streets was looking a wee bit forlorn and neglected.They took it upon themselves to clean and beautify this area.They involved local householders and tried to negotiate a planting of trees with the municipality.Unfortunately the trees did not happen owing to the location of water and sewerage pipes They did this to make it pleasant for visitors attending the Poetry in McGregor Festival Weekend in August.
Well done to these unsung heroes of McGregor ………Dorothy and Geoff Botten
YOU’RE INVITED….DONKEY SANCTUARY AGM
You are warmly invited to our McGregor Report Back:
12 years of caring at Eseltjiesrus Donkey Sanctuary
Open to all!
As their AGM is in Cape Town this year in early August, they are holding a report back just for their special supporters living in McGregor and wider area of the Winelands. Please invite your friends. This is also a chance for new residents to learn about the work we do.
The Sanctuary has a reputation for interesting, entertaining and fun-filled report backs. Each year they present their work through slides and words.
Thursday 15th August 2019
3pm to 5pm
at the Sanctuary
Tea, coffee, Eseltjiesrus wine and tasty snacks will be served
They look forward to welcoming you to our new Bistro. To ensure a warm welcome and enough delicious refreshments please let them know if you will be attending. Please RSVP to assist with catering by Friday 9th August. email: firstname.lastname@example.org<ma
LORDS LODGE DOES IT AGAIN
The winner of the best Vegan Pizza at the Global Pizza Challenge was our very own Matt Bronkhorst.The talented guys of Lords Lodge have done it again.We overflow with talent in our tiny village.Get up there soon as it will get increasingly more difficult to book a table.Remember what happened at WolfGat in Paternoster.
August in McGregor =
Poetry in McGregor Festival Weekend!
Hope you have fastened your seatbelts in preparation for the 7th annual Poetry in McGregor Festival weekend 23rd to 25th August. Clemengold / Zandvliet; Graham Beck; Hiemstra Trust and UWC are the main sponsors this year and thanks to them over 150 poets will be participating in over 80 events.
Founder of the McGregor Poetry Festival, Billy Kennedy says: “Poetry is intensely valuable to me. It always has been. From a child blest with a passionate English teacher to this present day as a Retreat director at Temenos, poetry has been a thread that runs through my life. Like Zorba, poetry can embrace and celebrate the ‘full catastrophe’ of being alive, the paradox of what it is to be fully human and divine. It can launch one into a moment of unsurpassed beauty, an extraordinary awareness of being connected to a myriad of things. It can also be an antidote to despair or tiredness and loneliness. One can even truly solve problems with its lines – not just their lexicon, but the life breathed into form by rhythm, rhyme or meter: a riddle; a moment of joy. It is the borrowed voice that colors a deeper awareness of who we are and what we experience. Just being has become a rare art. To be stilled and in the moment. Picking up a poem could save your life in more ways than one.
Abraham van Rooyen, CEO ANB Investments (ClemenGold Gin and Zandvliet Wine Estate), says that this event is one of the worthy initiatives which they proudly add their name to. “A nation is as rich as its creative output. The arts in all its forms push boundaries, broaden horizons, capture, explore and create pure beauty and joy to both creators and observers. Our companies are known as patrons of the arts, supporting various artists and initiatives.”
To celebrate the cycle of its seventh year, the 2019 theme is “The Heart of the Moon.” The first pioneering years of the festival were exemplified by Sun energy, the bold and active force essential to turning a vision into reality. Now, with the moon as a symbol, the intent is to dream into and deepen the very special intimacy that this unique festival offers.
Poetry in McGregor Festival is organised each year by a small passionate committee of The MAC Project (The McGregor Arts and Community Project) which is a non-profit organisation. Any profits made from the Poetry in McGregor event are channelled back into the community of McGregor to give support to local creative projects eg art and culture groups, dance groups, bands, choirs and child-care facilities.
Around full moon on 15 August 2019 a specially arranged visual skills photographic workshop has been organised for 12 selected local school children under the theme: Exploring the Poetry of Image. Under the direction of facilitator, Gwendolyn Meyer, they will explore ideas of the visual language in words and images using camera phone photography. This programme is sponsored by Graham Beck. You are all invited to view the exhibition of the photos at Temenos during the Poetry in McGregor Festival weekend. A booklet will also be compiled at a later stage.
There is always something happening in our fab village,please let us know and we will always endeavour to get it into this newsletter.Please let us know about your wine launches,so that we can include them here
Lots To Come Links…..
The fun never ends in our neck of the woods with the Run2Nowhere Weekend (31st August and 1st September); the Ride2Nowhere Weekend (6th to 8th September) and then the McGregor Magic Open Gardens / Heritage weekend (20th to 23rd September).
Some other links / contact details that may be of use to folk who like to plan ahead:
Where to stay – accommodation options
Wahnfried programme of films and live cultural events
Temenos Retreat – for retreats, workshops etc
McGregor Wine Meander – for information of wineries in and around the village
Arts and Crafts – art galleries, pottery studios and so much more
Mind and Body – yoga, massages, Qi-gong, retreats, hiking clubs, walking
Vrolijkheid Nature Reserve for walks, bird hides (wheelchair friendly boardwalk), braille trail
at the courtyard musical events
Millstone Pottery high-temperature wood-firing jamboree (18 to 20 October 2019)
Have a great August everyone and remember….
We LOVE you!