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Toti to go tartan again for Highland Gathering

This year's Highland Gathering promises to top previous years' celebrations. Visitors can look forward to a day of fun and outdoor adventure as the biggest gathering of pipe bands in the southern hemisphere descends on Amanzimtoti. There is plenty for petrolheads, too.

ON April 27, Amanzimtoti’s Hutchison Park will be buzzing when the biggest gathering of pipe bands, the Highland Gathering, brings not-to-be-missed excitement and fun for the whole family.

The annual fundraiser, hosted by the Amanzimtoti Lions Club, promises so much more than the previous years.

Also read: Action-packed Uhuru Rugby Festival held in Amanzimtoti 

According to Lion Madelyn Stander, marketing convener, there will be something for everyone. “We have added a few new events to bring together a feast of tradition, music and community spirit,” she said.

For the outdoor enthusiasts, a dedicated outdoor adventure section is included for the first time. Whether you prefer a walk on the wild side, perusing a wide range of braais, camping equipment, sports paraphernalia, hobby items, leatherwork or knives, make sure you head down for some additional fun.

What to expect from the 2024 Highland Gathering: If it has a motor, it will be at the event, as well. Cars, bakkies, boats, jet skis and bikes will entertain every petrolhead out there. There will also be various stalls, including a craft market, a food court, animal shows and live entertainment. Mr and Miss Highland Gathering will give local models the chance to strut their stuff on the catwalk again.

The highlight of the day, however, will be the mass band performance from about 17:00 when all the piping bands congregate on the rugby field. Danré van der Spuy will accompany the bands by singing Amazing Grace.

This year’s mass band performance will be dedicated to Lion John West, who passed away in December 2023, in recognition of his 20-year contribution to organising the Highland Gathering.

Individuals, small businesses and corporations can join the Amanzimtoti Lions Club in making the Highland Gathering a success. Donate anything from R5 per chair and water for the volunteers manning the gates to bigger sponsorship opportunities. Every contribution, no matter the size, directly benefits the local community through initiatives that uplift and support those in need.

For this year’s event, the gate has moved to maximise foot traffic for stallholders which means more direct marketing and engagement on the day.

Romy Wenzel of Sapphire Coast Tourism, one of the event partners, said the event is not only a calendar highlight for Amanzimtoti but a great opportunity to explore the many adventures found on the Sapphire Coast, extending from Athlone Park in the north to Clansthal in the south.

The cost of entry to the Highland Gathering is R60 per person or R40 for scholars and pensioners. Children six and under enter free.

For more information about the Highland Gathering, visit www.highlandgathering.co.za, call 072 767 7833, or email info@highlandgathering.co.za

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