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Thursday, 25 July 2019 10:44

2019 Leisure Isle Festival dates announced.

The ever-popular annual Leisure Isle Festival will be held on the weekend of 9th and 10th November 2019. A week later than usual to avoid a clash with the Rugby World Cup Final, the organisers are looking to do even better than last year’s Festival which raised over R300,000 for 8 local charities. Booking of Festival sites opens on Thursday 1st August and can be done online from our website  www.leisureislefestival.co.za. Paper application forms will be available at Sotheby’s offices on Leisure Isle, Thesen Islands and at Woodmill Lane as well as at Sedgefield.

The Festival will be held on the ‘village-green’ atmosphere of Kingsway Park on Leisure Isle. This is the 17th Festival which has raised a total of nearly R2.0M for charities since its very small beginnings in 2003. The event, organised by a group of volunteers, aims to provide opportunities for local charities to participate and raise funds to benefit the wider Knysna community and to provide local crafters and small businesses with a market-place for their high quality products. Once again special efforts will be made to provide local emerging crafters with an opportunity to showcase their products. This year there will be 9 beneficiary charities - Knysna Animal Welfare, e’Pap Children Feeding Scheme, Hospice, Steenbok Nature Reserve, Vermont Old Age Home, LoerieHof, Die Werkswinkel and Ithemba

There will be a mouth-watering array of food and drink, as well as art and crafts, toys, a huge array of books, indigenous and other plants and many other delights. A number of the stalls including book sales, pancake stalls, the wine and beer bar and tea garden will be run by participating charities. A strong focus this year will be on the provision of learning activities for children. Queen Bee, Knysna Basin Project and Steenbok Nature Reserve stalls will provide environmental displays, face painting, colouring competitions and treasure hunts in addition to more energetic activities such as a jumping castle.

The organising committee convenor, Niall Johnston, said he was delighted that the Festival’s founding sponsor, Sotheby’s International Realty Knysna, is continuing its vital support and wished to thank them and all the other sponsors and supporters. Without their help, said Johnston, there would be no Festival. Leisure Isle Residents Association have again endorsed and facilitated the event. Each year the Festival becomes more costly and complex to stage -if other organisations or businesses would like to support the Festival in some way please contact Niall Johnston – This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Peter Smith - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The organising committee this year comprises: Niall Johnston (convenor), Peter Smith, Bob Hunt, Chris Kay, Sheena Mare, Natalie Scanlen, Libby Gibb and Iain Butchart.

For further information please contact:

Niall Johnston - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Peter Smith - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Published in Festivals & events

It’s all happening on Leisure Isle this weekend when the island turns into a sparkling Treasure Isle for the annual two-day Festival in aid of local charities. There are so many treasures and attractions for all ages to take part in you need to spend a full day there to enjoy the whole experience, so block off Saturday and Sunday in your calendars and head for Treasure Isle.

As well as over 100 stalls featuring crafts, art and food this year’s Festival offers a whole range of activities you can take part in. The younger generation are well catered for with traditional favourites the barrel train rides and a jumping castle where they can use up their energy, and two new attractions a Pirate Treasure Hunt and Snag Golf. The Treasure Hunt is open to all aged between seven and ten and will take place between 11.00am and 3.00pm on Saturday. Go to stand 15, Knysna Basin Project, on your own or with friends and collect an entry form. When you have solved all the hidden clues you can claim some Pirate’s Treasure – and everyone will be a winner! Dress up as a pirate if you like but it’s not essential. When you have won your treasure have a go at Snag Golf where you can test your golfing skills, and perhaps challenge your mum or dad.

While all this is going on dads, and mums of course, can visit the display of vintage and classic cars, kindly presented by Brian Bruce. This was a very popular attraction last year and there will be some amazing cars on show that will turn enthusiasts green with envy.

Baden will once again be providing relaxing background music on 87,8 mHz and keeping you up-to-date with the latest Festival news and activities.

The Festival is a great shopping experience and ideal for serious Christmas shopping, with a huge selection of crafts, clothes, paintings and food stalls including Christmas cakes and other festive fare. No excuse for giving yet another pair of socks this year! If you enjoy books then get to the Hospice Book Stall early – it’s very, very popular and they have a huge range of titles. Gardeners will be pleased to see the rose stall there again plus an interesting selection of other nurseries and plants to fill the gaps in their borders.

If all this works up a thirst you can enjoy cooling draughts at Mitchells Beer Tent and taste Painted Wolf wines, all in aid of e’Pap Childrens Feeding Scheme, or a restorative cuppa at the Hospice Tea Garden. Hungry appetites are also well catered for with a great selection of food stalls offering food for all tastes – from boerewors and other traditional dishes to curries, ragouts and lasagne. Top it all off with some of the best coffee in Knysna.

Please remember that while you are enjoying yourselves you are helping the local charities that benefit from over R200,000 raised by the Festival each year - e’Pap Children Feeding Scheme, Knysna/Sedgefield Hospice, Vermont Old Age Home, the Hands and Hearts Centre, Steenbok Nature Reserve and Knysna Animal Welfare Society (KAWS). And this is all made possible by the generous support of many local sponsors that are too numerous to list here.


For further information please contact Peter Smith 072 282 5574, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Published in Festivals & events

The Leisure Isle Festival brings to mind the children's classic novel 'Treasure Island' by R L Stevenson. Stevenson's novel relates a story of an island on which a large hoard of gold has been hidden. For the past fourteen years Leisure Isle has presented a festival that encourages thousands of eager treasure seekers to search for their piece of treasure.

The generous sponsorship of Sotheby's International Realty Knysna has ensured that locals and those from far and wide can, once again, look forward to an enjoyable and jam-packed Leisure Isle Festival over the weekend of 5th and 6th of November. Visitors will once again find ample opportunities to stock up on Christmas shopping and sample an even larger variety of good foods, great entertainment and enjoyable refreshment. All this activity can be found at the festival ground, Kingsway Park, Leisure Isle.

An opportunity offered by the festival for visitors to buy local and support the Knysna + Partner’s 'Knysna Made' initiative is a positive aspect of the festival. The festival committee is working with Knysna + Partners to provide exhibitor space for selected emerging crafters and other informal traders.

A key focus of the festival committee is to provide the local community with an opportunity to support local charities through the purchase of locally produced arts and crafts. The 2015 festival was successful in raising over R200,000 for charity, This year Leisure Isle Festival charity beneficiaries include: Knysna Animal Welfare Society (KAWS), e'Pap Children Feeding Scheme, Knysna Sedgefield Hospice, Steenbok Nature Reserve, Vermont Old Age Home, LoerieHof Old Age Home and Hands and Hearts Centre – incorporating Emzini.

The Festival organizing committee of Bob Hunt, Chris Kay, Iain Butchart, Peter Smith, Sheena Mare, Deon Steyn, Natalie Scanlen and Niall Johnston has been working hard to make sure that the 2016 Leisure Isle Festival will continue the upward trend of increased support for charities this year. To ensure that this goal is attained over one hundred stalls offering a selection of old favourites and enticing new product will be on show. The committee is very happy to confirm that Brian Bruce will, once again, be showing a selection of his wonderful collection of classic cars.

The committee echoes the sentiment expressed by the long serving past Chairman Roger Voysey last year when he stated the following: ' We are grateful to our founding sponsor, Sotheby's International Realty Knysna, and Knysna + Partners, Leisure Isle Residents Association and the large number of organizations that provide pro-bono services. Without these supporters, the Leisure Isle Festival would not be possible'

Booking of Festival stalls opens online on 01 August. Applications may be made on the Leisure Isle Festival website www.leisureislefestival.co.za or via hard copy. These application forms will be available from the Sotheby's International Realty Knysna offices in Woodmill Lane and Leisure Isle.


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Natalie Scanlen
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Published in Festivals & events
Friday, 12 August 2016 02:52

Get into the Festival Spirit this Spring!

We are edging our way towards the end of winter and have much to look forward to over the warmer months ahead - with not one, but three popular festivals scheduled to take place in Knysna over the next few months. Not only are festivals important local economic drivers but they also play an important role in strengthening community spirit. Most of these festivals also have fund raising initiatives in place which benefit countless local charities. So be sure to mark your calendars for these fantastic events!!

Knysna Arts Festival
Knysna has long been known as a town with a thriving creative community – boasting incredible talent across multiple artistic genres. This 9-day arty affair takes place from the 1-9 October 2016, and is once again being hosted by Sotheby’s International Realty. This festival serves not only as a fantastic platform for local artists to showcase their talents but is also a way for funds to be generated in support of several worthy beneficiaries.

“We have appointed a larger team of organisers for the 2016 event to ensure that we can seamlessly grow the Knysna Arts Festival into a major destination event without it losing its Knysna flavour or independence” commented Sotheby’s International Realty principal, Peter Mare. “The underlying philosophy of this event is to stimulate locally produced art whilst also supporting the greater Knysna community”, he concluded.

The 2016 festival will be concentrated around a central 'Art Hub' at the Woodmill Walk which will be the dynamic centre of activity, with workshops, art exhibitions and several performance arts offerings including theatre, cabaret, dance and live music.


Leisure Island Festival
The Leisure Isle Festival is a feel-good annual event organised by the community – for the community. It takes place in Kingsway Park, Leisure Island on the 5 & 6 November 2016. It aims to provide local crafters and businesses a unique opportunity to showcase and sell their products, promote community spirit, and provide a venue for approved charities to raise funds.
A wide number of local businesses, organisations and individuals support this much loved local initiative. “It truly is a case of locals supporting the needs of the local community”, states the official website.
This festival is an ideal family event, with a host of activities geared towards children.

The Knysna Timber Festival
Our town is deeply rooted in timber and the Knysna Timber Festival, which takes place at the Timber Village on Welbedacht Lane from the 11 - 13 November 2016, is a fitting celebration of our heritage and is paving the way for the reawakening of Knysna's multifaceted timber culture.
The festival presents local wood crafters and master cabinet-makers with an opportunity to showcase their expertise, while also serving as an ideal platform for various businesses and brands to market their products and services. The festival is geared towards professionals in the field as well as hobbyists, DIY enthusiasts and the general public. It even caters for the little ones.
Day One: A workshop event with interesting presentations by industry professionals.
Day Two: Will feature TV personalities, DIY workshops, Timber Games, a Timber Trail Run and Kids Zone.
Day Three: Focuses on the outdoors, exquisite kitchens and timber related literature.

Published in Festivals & events
Thursday, 19 November 2015 19:26

Leisure Isle Festival supports Local Charities

Once again the Leisure Isle Festival supported local charities by raising R215 500 for its beneficiaries.
Its 100 stalls offered excellent shopping that showcased some of Knysna’s finest crafters. A variety of food stalls added to the ambiance and saw festival goers sitting in the sun enjoying the great food and beverages on offer.

Published in Festivals & events
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Thursday, 22 October 2015 14:33

Classic Leisure Isle Festival

This year’s revered Leisure Isle Festival (fondly-known as Treasure Ilse Festival) will, as in in the past, add something special to ensure that the festival provides something for everyone on November 7 and 8.

Besides the many crafts, books and plant stalls, this year’s festival includes a very special exhibition. Brian Bruce, renowned classic car collector will display some of his privately owned classic cars. “He will be displaying classic cars dating back to the 1900s right up until the 1970s,” explained Roger Vosey, Leisure Isle Festival convener.

Bruce’s display of classic cars, currently housed in a warehouse in Knysna Industria, will include several old petrol pumps and other memorabilia sure to transport festival goers to yesteryear. Antique car enthusiasts will be astonished to see some of the rare finds that Bruce has in his collection. There is a beautiful 1923 Rolls Royce Shooting Brake as well as a Raleigh Safety Seven three-wheel car that was manufactured in the 1930s. Only 300 were originally made and today, only nine are believed to have survived. Two of the three-wheelers are in South Africa, and one of lives in Knysna. Bruce has not yet decided which cars he will place on display but assured that they would be cars with a rich history. Don’t miss this display as Bruce will be on hand to share his wealth of knowledge throughout the Leisure Isle Festival.

“Knysna & Partners are excited to have Bruce on-board. We believe that his passions for this country’s heritage and his enthusiasm for Knysna to become a global classic car enthusiast’s destination will add great value to the Leisure Isle Festival. Once again we are proud to endorse this successful local festival and believe in its recipe for success,” said Greg Vogt, Knysna & Partners CEO.

With the current state of electricity within South Africa, festival goers will be well advised to visit Baden Hall at his Solar Power display during the festival. Hall is bound to enthusiastically offer advice and information on this alternate power source.

Over 100 stalls will offer old favourites as well as new items during the festival. Two past firm favourites of the Leisure Isle Festivals, the Leisure Isle Festival Open Gardens and the Knysna Arts Society Art Exhibition have returned to the festival. “We scouted around the Island and chose six gardens to showcase during the festival,” said Voysey. “Special efforts have been made to provide emerging crafters with an opportunity to showcase their products. As in the past, the focus will be on local products and crafts with participating charities running the tea garden, book sale, a beer and wine bar and several other stalls,” said Voysey.

The Leisure Isle Festival committee of Voysey, Bob Hunt, Chris Kay, Lorr Scanlen, Niall Johnston, Peter Godsell, Peter Smith and Sheena Mare have all be extremely productive preparing for this year’s festival. A festival that they believe will outshine all.

This year’s festival charity beneficiaries are Knysna Animal Welfare Society (KAWS), e’Pap Children Feeding Scheme, Knysna/Sedgefield Hospice, Steenbok Nature Reserve, Vermont Old Age Home and Hands and Hearts Centre – incorporating Emzini.

Vosey expressed his heartfelt thanks to the festival’s founding sponsor, Sotheby’s International Realty Knysna, Knysna & Partners, leisure Isle Residents Association and the large number of organisations that provide pro”-bono services. “Without these supporters, the Leisure Isle Festival would not be possible,” he concluded.

Published in Festivals & events