Incredible kites and thousands of visitors went ‘beyond the blue’ at the weekend (1 and 2
November 2014) at Africa’s biggest kite festival – the 20th Cape Town International Kite
Festival, proudly hosted by not-for-profit organisation Cape Mental Health, at Zandvlei Nature
Reserve in Muizenberg.
A star attraction was Toothless, an 18-metre kite made for 20th Century Fox’s film premiere of
‘How to Train Your Dragon 2’, created by Craig Hansen and his team at Peter Lynn Kites
Limited in New Zealand. With a gusty strong South-Easter blowing for much of the weekend
Hansen had his hands full keeping the giant kite secure. Local kite-makers Ashley and Mari
Ware-Lane from Brackenfell were not so lucky – they have been on a ‘Finding Nemo’ mission
since Sunday, when gale-force winds ripped a stack of their kites from its moorings; Polly,
Molly and Nemo were last seen flying towards Cape Town’s Southern Suburbs.
Local children showed off their creativity in the EduKite Competition for primary schools and
schools for learners with special educational needs. The winners in the mainstream category
were: 1st – Christel House, Ottery (R3, 000); 2nd – Capricorn Primary School, Vrygrond (R2, 000);
3rd – Fish Hoek Primary School (R1, 000). In the schools for learners with special educational
needs (LSEN) category the three top schools were: 1st – Dorothea Special School,
Stellenbosch (R3, 000); 2nd – Vera School for Learners with Autism, Rondebosch (R2, 000); 3rd –
St Joseph’s Home RC Primary School, Montana (R1, 000).
The People’s Post Heritage Kite Award (R1, 000 prize and a floating trophy) for the best
traditional Swaeltjie kite went to Kashiefa Isaacs from Athlone; with her brother Khamiel
Sambo taking second place (R300) and third place (R200) going to Gerald Gelderbloem
from Parkwood Estate. The ‘open’ category, with a R500 prize, was won by ten-year-old
Orion Brophy, Gelderbloem’s grandson, who has been making kites with his ‘oupa’ since he
was five years old. The competition was judged by kiters – Greg Mountjoy of ‘Kites by Design’
in Knysna, Peter Binsbergen from Port Elizabeth and Gadis Widiyati Riyadi from Singapore.
Ingrid Daniels, Director of Cape Mental Health, said a highlight of this year’s Kite Festival was
the first community fly in Heideveld. “It’s wonderful to see how kites lift the spirits and spark off
smiles, even on the greyest of days.” According to Daniels they host the annual kite festival to
promote good mental health, bring together people of all abilities and raise funds.
Any profits generated go directly to Cape Mental Health to help provide mental health services
to people in poorly resourced communities in the Western Cape.
The event has become very popular on the international kiting calendar. This year kiters from
Germany, Singapore, New Zealand and all over South Africa attended.