Fire victims honoured at Timber Festival
A Wall of Remembrance to honour the people who lost their lives in the Knysna Fires of 2017 will be unveiled during this year’s Knysna Timber Festival. It also honours people who lost their homes, livelihoods, or possessions in the fires, as well as the firefighters, emergency teams, fire management units, the donors and volunteers who helped fight the fires, and who brought relief to the people of the region during and after the tragedy.
The organisers have invited Knysna mayor Mark Willemse as the guest of honour for the occasion.
This year’s festival will place particular emphasis on young people, with fun activities for littlies, information and career guidance for teenagers, and talks by a number of knowledgeable young adults.
For the youth
The Knysna Timber Initiative, which owns and runs the festival, is keen to encourage young people to pursue careers in the timber value chain in the region – which includes sectors as diverse as plantation forestry, conservation, engineering, carpentry, joinery, and business.
Representatives from the Nelson Mandela University’s George campus and the South Cape TVET College will be on hand to share information about the courses they offer right here in the Garden Route.
Scheduled tours of Knysna’s timber factories and sawmills will showcase the process of turning raw logs into finished products, and will highlight the various career paths available in the industry. And to introduce very young children to the fun and possibilities of working with wood, there will be a kids’ tent and activity area where they will be shown how to build small items like coasters or wooden planter boxes, and how to paint and seal them.
The business of the 2018 Knysna Timber Festival will include exhibitions and demonstrations by suppliers, crafters, self-help groups, and NGOs, as well as a static display on Sunday morning of Knysna’s firefighting and rescue equipment – while the spirit of the festival will overflow at the food court, with lawn games featuring oversized wooden toys (Jenga, anyone?), and on Friday afternoon, at the Robin Hood & Forest Fairy Pageant organised by Ace Models.
The festival will take place at Timber Village on Welbedacht Lane from Friday 5 to Sunday 7 October. The Wall of Remembrance will be unveiled on Saturday at 10:00, and the speaker programme will run on Saturday and Sunday. Please see www.timberfestival.co.za for details.
Entrance to the festival village will cost R20 (to cover the costs of security, cleaning, etc.), but there will be no charge if you want to attend just the unveiling of the Wall of Remembrance.