When Sunday’s weather turned out to be near perfect it was destined that the fundraiser organised for Talhado Children’s Haven at the Seal Point lighthouse was going to be a success.    The morning kicked off with yoga on the grass in front of the lighthouse tower, overlooking the ocean.  This was followed by a gentle walk or run for the duration of 67 minutes.  67 is the number of years that Nelson Mandela gave of his life to service for his country.  

The first 67 people to buy tickets were issued with a beautiful pen from Andy Cartwright’s “I am South African” collection, sponsored by Carey Olsen, as well as a personal Thank You card made by the children of Talhado.  Around 80 people meandered around the lighthouse and its surrounding fynbos reserve.  It wasn’t a race, which meant that people of any age and any ability could participate.  

When everyone had built up an appetite from exercising they could indulge in some delicious burgers and donuts supplied by Chef Wesley and Juliet Randles of Nevermind Restaurant, washed down with thirst quenching, freshly squeezed orange juice from Fresh Beets.    And if that wasn’t enough there was a huge table of cakes and pastries to choose from, kindly supplied by St Francis’s talented bakers.   

Children tried their hand at the classic old fishing game, while parents could take in some local art and purchase crocheted “Oumie” hats and bags lovingly made by Greta Dias or some seedlings and herbs for the garden from The Farmyard Nursery.  And what’s a visit to the lighthouse without climbing to the top of the tower itself?  Many families made their way up the Old Lady to take in the views and capture a few snapshots from atop the tower. 

Meanwhile, down on the sprawling lawns Dirk Ellis Volkswagen, as the main sponsor of the day, displayed their latest range of VW buses while the gentle sounds of the Talhado marimba band floated on the airwaves. 

Speaking of airwaves, the Port Elizabeth Amateur Radio were transmitting from inside the lighthouse to connect with people in lighthouses all around the world to tie in with International Lighthouse Weekend celebrations.   Inside the foyer of the lighthouse were some beautiful art pieces which were on silent auction.  

At the end of the day the organisers tallied up the takings and in excess of R116 000 was raised for Talhado.  As the ability to hold fundraising events had ground to a screeching halt in early 2020 due to Covid restrictions, this event has provided much-needed funds which will assist the school in its day to day running while it continues to offer quality Montessori education and cooked meals to nearly 100 local learners aged 3-6 years. 

Organisers of the event, Cathryn Hempel (Talhado principal), Christina Tancredi and Janet Duval, wish to thank all of our generous corporate and private sponsors and everyone involved who came out to support and enjoy the day.    Talhado also wishes to thank Clinton, Paul and Haydn of Petrel Ventures for allowing them to host such a wonderful and successful fundraiser at the beautiful Seal Point Lighthouse.

Article by Cath Hempel