The Slow Town Festival
The time has come and passed for one the biggest celebratory weekend on the Sedgefield and Garden Route Calendar. We are of course taking about the Sedgefield 'Slow Town Festival', which occurs on the Easter Holiday weekend, where folks come from as far as Cape Town, Durban, Johannesburg and Pretoria to check out the annual proceedings. This years jamboree was the 5th Annual Festival, and what a Festival it was.So how would the locals compare this years celebrations to ones in previous years? And more importantly...what on earth is the Sedgefield 'Slow Town Festival'? Whats the noise about?
What makes this town special is it's ability to come together and work as a team when it matters, whether if its environmental, educational, economical or evangelical issues, to promote the local area and secure our place on the map and let the world know that Sedgefield is a fully functioning town and not in the bright shadow of the neighboring Knysna, another gem on the Garden Route.
Since the fact that Sedgefield is primarily a town of 5,000 out of season (and 1000 of them being hippies), the suggestion box for events is filled with things more colourful than what you would find in Nelson Mandela's Shirt Collection.
With the old and young getting heavily involved, here are 10 examples of what you would expect to see at the 'Slow-Fest'.
1. Sand Sculpting Challenge
As simple and as fun as it sounds, local residents and holiday makers make their way to Myoli Beach (the doorstep of Afrovibe Adventure Lodge) and take to the challenge of creating the most original and perfectly sculptured structure. Enter as a family team or even as a dorm full of backpackers - the more the merrier.
2. Anything That Floats
We take to the Placid Waters Lodge with direct access to the river that runs through the heart of the town and get straight to work. No Rocket Science brains needed here, the aim of the game is to grab as many materials as you can whether its tyres, plastic drums, wooden beams or even tiles from your own rooftop, throw it all together with duct tape + string and create a raft that will last in a short race against the remaining competitor... prepare to get wet! Lyle, Linnea and the vibe family from Jeffreys Bay built the 'Vibocraft' from materials collected from the recycling plant. Their craft was built in just over two hours and much to everyone's surprise it floated, completed the course and lived to tell the tale!:)
3. Braai Master Challenge
Because no South African festival of any size isn't complete without a Ruckus of Rump, Grilling of Gammon or a Sizzle of Sirloin. Competitors enter, meat is provided and its up to the Champion Braaier to show off their own spices and a bit of magic to prove if he or she can actually bring home the bacon.
4. Slow Festival Drive-In
Re-live the good old days of the Movie Drive-in, ensure you have a car radio and help yourself to pop Corn and home made burgers courtesy of the local snack gurus, then sit back and relax. Viewings
this year are of: 'Despicable Me 2', 'The Blind Side' and 'Grease'.
5. Vivo Barefoot Goukamma Traverse Trail
A chilled Marathon taking place along the beautiful Goukamma River for anybody to take part. The Race is sponsored by Sedgefield Spar and there are plenty of prizes up for grabs.
6. Pili Pili Beer Pong Championships
Sponsored by local Craft Beer Titans 'Mitchells Brewery'. Teams of two register on the Friday night and battle it out to the Sunday night final to see who is crowned the 2014 Pili Pili Beer Pong Champions and the winner of a R1000 bar tab and a collection of Mitchells Merchandise. House Rules apply, do you have what it takes?
7. Windpomp Diner 'Keeping it Country'
Join the more experienced members of Sedgefield in a Line Dance, bring your cowboy hat and Texas accent and make some room for some Lekker Local Curry and Rice..and Dolly Pardon.
8. Slow Biking Competition
The most unusual race you will ever see, the inner is the person with the slowest time who manages to NOT fall off their bike. Prizes are given to the Slowest Man, Woman and Child.
9. Village Green Beer, Food and Craft Garden
Come along for the afternoon and enjoy local produce supplied by the local townsfolk. Munch on Corn dogs, Hotdogs, Vetkoek + Mince, Wraps and Salads e.t.c washed down with some Fresh Bean Coffee, Wine or Foresters and Bosuns beer courtesy of the Mitchells Brewery.
10. Slow Fest Closing Parade
Join in the closing of a great weekend and see the Town Parade start from the Centre all the way to the Village Green. Expect colourful floats and funky vehicles, drummers drumming, trumpets trouping, beauty pageants winners and some live music from an Afrikaans gentleman sporting a Scottish Kilt plus 1 Bagpipe, Brass Band and theAfrovibe Rock School. The prizes for 'Outstanding Community Member', 'Best Front Garden' are announced at the closing of the weekend. So there we go!!
Thats what you would expect at see at the ever growing Sedgefield Slow Town Festival in what was definitely the most Orange Fest we have ever seen and most probably the best one yet, supported by the united backbone of the townspeople and a perfect forecast supplied by the heavens, just another weekend in Paradise.