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The 29th Pick n Pay Knysna Oyster Festival has added to its extensive line-up a host of exciting lifestyle events for the whole family to enjoy.
Already the largest of its kind in Africa, the oyster festival, which takes place this year from 6 – 15 July, is the best possible way to spend 10 activity-packed days of your winter holidays with friends and family.
The highlight of the lifestyle event calendar each year is the midweek culinary experience. This year, the festival introduces the Pick n Pay Flavours of Knysna which takes place on Wednesday 11 July.
Restaurants in and around Knysna will showcase their menus in what promises to be an evening of oyster indulgence and culinary delights.
Participating restaurants will compete in a variety of categories for prizes which will be adjudicated by a respected panel of judges. There will be plenty food and drink available including Knysna’s famous delicacy – oysters!
Also new at the festival is the Knysna Wine Festival and Night Market which takes place on Monday 9 July and Tuesday 10 July between 5 and 9pm.
Held in a Bedouin tent at the Nedbank Pavilion, the Night Market will be a unique place for families and friends to meet to sample local fare, mingle with visitors and locals and listen to live music.
The Knysna Wine Festival, (originally the Wade Bales Wine Festival) which will this year be part of the Night Market, will showcase over 50 of South Africa’s top wine estates.
Guests will be able to sample wines and meet winemakers from estates such as Steenberg, Sumaridge and Neil Ellis. Wines will also be on sale at special festival prices.
On Wednesday 11 July, Kom Braai, a braai competition for children between eight and 14, will take place at Nedbank Pavilion from 10am to 3pm.
To encourage children to get outdoors and enjoy cultural fun with friends and family, participants armed with Pick n Pay braai meat will don their aprons and fight it out for the title of ‘best braaier’. The day promises to be great fun for all with live music and giveaways throughout.
For music lovers, talented and much loved SA singer and songwriter Lize Beekman will be performing for one night only on Saturday 7 July.
The Pick n Pay Fresh Experience will be open daily at the Nedbank Pavilion. Offering delicious fresh food and drinks, the Fresh Experience will be a meeting place at the heart of festival where visitors can enjoy a healthy meal while listening to the sounds of local musicians in the winter sun.
And while parents are enjoying the Fresh Experience, kids will be entertained at the Pick n Pay Young Oyster Festival, also based at the Nedbank Pavilion.
Throughout the entire 10 days of the festival children of all ages can take part in cycle races, dance, music and drama workshops, craft and art classes, sand art workshops and fun cooking classes.
Other activities on offer include puppet-making workshops, puppet shows, drama workshops and dress-up, face-painting classes, paintball and quad-biking.
The festival would not be the same without the usual suspects which include the Pick n Pay Weekend Argus Rotary Cycle races, the Salomon Featherbed Trail Run, the Pick n Pay Cape Times Knysna Forest marathon and half marathon, the Oystercatcher Oyster Shucking Competition presented by Tabasco, the Knysna Oyster Co Eating Competition presented by Tabasco and the ships of the SA Navy traversing the infamous Knysna Heads among others. There are over 100 events to enjoy at this year’s festival.
No matter what your idea of the perfect holiday is, the festival has something for everyone, from running, cycling and adventure racing to wine and whiskey tastings, cooking competitions, food and wine pairings, gala evenings, live music, a specialised children’s programme and of course - oysters!
This year the festival hub will be back in the centre of the town at the sports grounds, Waterfront Pavilion on Waterfront Drive. To make sure you don’t miss out book your accommodation now to be part of SA’s winter holiday destination of choice.
For further information visit www.pnpoysterfestival.co.za or call Knysna Tourism on 044 382 5510.