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September 21, 2012

Cape Town Heritage Day celebrations

Colourful Bo-Kaap forms part of Cape Town's diverse cultural heritage. Photo © Cape Town Tourism

South Africans will celebrate a long weekend this weekend with Heritage Day taking place on Monday September 24, 2012, and Capetonians are ready to celebrate the day, and their heritage, with vigour. 

So excited are locals that Heritage Week celebrations, hosted by the City of Cape Town and various partners, have already been taking place all over the city as part of the in_herit Festival.

One of the partners, the Iziko South African Museum, has put together a variety of events for locals to sink their teeth into, including guided tours of the ceramics exhibition at the Castle of Good Hope, a Zulu exhibition at the Slave Lodge, a show and tell by the director of the social history collection, Lalou Meltzer, about the study and collection of coins and medals (numismatics) at the Slave Lodge and another guided tour at the Bo-Kaap Museum. View the full programme of events here.

If you're a poetry lover and looking to soak up the spoken word as it intertwines with melodic indigenous sounds, you are sure to enjoy the lunchtime poetry session on Friday September 21, 2012 at the South African National Library.

Parents looking to entertain their kids haven't been left out of the event calender. During Heritage Weekend, children are able to learn and play indigenous games at the City of Cape Town's Come and Play initiative at the Grass Paddock at the Iziko South African Museum, take in a screening at the Planetarium and attend an edutainment show with Tracey the snake lady.

During Heritage Weekend the Iziko Ampitheatre will host a number of performing art and music events which will highlight the city's diverse cultural heritage. Participants are set to include the Happy Feet Dance Project, Jikileza and Hilton Schilder, among others.

The Company's Garden will play host to a free concert on Heritage Day. Photo © Cape Town Tourism

Another partner, Creative Cape Town, will bring its Heritage Week celebrations to an end this weekend by showcasing ways in which small city spaces can be used to host small-scale events and activities. These displays will include skateboarders and buskers in the Company's Garden.

On Heritage Day, in addition to the countless braais taking place at homes and in national parks, the week's festivities will culminate with a free concert at the Company's Garden. Pack a picnic basket, bring your family and enjoy the sounds of the Cape Philharmonic Youth Orchestra, poet Toni Stuart and Latin Jazz artists Hassan 'Adas and Friends, while sitting on the lawns, or pop along to the Iziko Slave Lodge for a lunchtime poetry session.

There are so many events to atttend on Heritage Day, including a production of An African Tale to the Mother City, which will be launched by St George’s Cathedral Crypt Memory and Witness Centre. The production celebrates the courage of those who pushed for the right of African families to live and work in Cape Town during the late 1970s and 1980s. Music will be provided by the Hout Bay Music Project Trust.

All the events are free of charge, excluding entry to the Castle of Good Hope and the Planetarium, which are free on Heritage Day, September 24, only.

If you would like to explore more of the Mother City's culture and heritage at your own pace, visit our Top Five Cultural and Heritage Spots in Cape Town blog for some inspiration.

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