Words: Belinda Mountain | Images: Supplied
Head to Zandvlei, Muizenberg, on 27 and 28 October, and you’ll see the blue sky filled with colour and movement, as kiters from as far as Australia, India and Turkey fly their incredible creations. Now in its 24th year, this fun event provides an opportunity for Cape Mental Health to raise awareness of mental health issues and provide support for their various community-based projects.
Ingrid Daniels, director, Cape Mental Health, and president elect, World Federation for Mental Health, says, “Cape Mental Health organised the first Cape Town International Kite Festival in 1994 and since then this event has become Africa’s biggest kite festival. Now mental health organisations around the country have adopted the kite as a symbol, using kites to raise awareness and funds.” This event is the grand finale to October being Mental Health Awareness Month, and it provides an opportunity for children and families to get outside, be active, enjoy time together, and look up.
Greg Mountjoy, co-owner, Kites by Design in Knysna, is one of the professional kiters that will be at the event. Greg started flying and making kites when he was six years old and is now a veteran of international festivals, having attended several as a featured guest in India, France, Bali and Germany. We asked him for some advice on which kite to buy for your family, if you’re just starting out. “It really depends on what you’d like to do with the kite and who will be flying it. The fatal error most people make, is to buy a stunt kite – often a poor-quality one – that either won’t fly or breaks the first time it hits the deck,” says Greg. He recommends buying something simple, like a single link delta or diamond kite, as these are much more suitable for family fun – look for one made with rip-stop, nylon and fibreglass spars.
At the event you can buy from a wide range of kites or attend a free kite-making workshop. There will also be a children’s play area, entertainment, lots to eat and drink, a picnic area, and various other arts and crafts. Tickets cost R40 per adult and R15 for children under 12.