Since its arrival on the KwaDukuza coastline five years ago, the Mr Price Pro Ballito international surfing competition and beach festival (July 1-7) have become highlights on the South African sporting and entertainment calendars.
As the only ASP PRIME surfing competition on the African continent, the ‘Pro’ draws surfers of the highest calibre from all over the world to Ballito’s shores.
However, the surfing element of the Mr Price Pro Ballito is by no means the only attraction responsible for making the competition so well loved.
The Mr Price Pro Ballito Beach Festival that runs concurrently with the surfing event has gained a reputation in its own right as Africa’s biggest, beach and lifestyle event. Previously, the festival’s free concerts and extreme sport displays made it a huge hit and this year looks set to be better than ever with the addition of the event’s first ever Food and Wine Exhibition.
The exhibition will be called “Coastal Living Bru”, and has been designed with the intention of showcasing the unique and wonderful culture of KwaDukuza. It will provide a smorgasbord of sensory experiences geared around local cuisine, exquisite wines and artisan lifestyle products.
“We are very excited to be expediting the inaugural Coastal Living Bru Food & Wine Lifestyle Festival, and showcasing the best the North Coast region has to offer in the way of local produce and fine cuisine. Our programme is bursting with an assortment of activities that will tanalise the taste buds and promote South African artestry to its best. Together with our various partners through this event, we have created a smorgasbord of attractions which will delight whilst at the same time provide tangible job creation and tourism awareness for KwaDukuza. We embrace you all to come along and join us in celebration of fine artisan food & local brew, and stay a while to enjoy the array of spectacular entertainment we have provided for you.” said KwaDukuza municipality events co-ordinator, Collette Bundy.
The Coastal Living exhibition boasts a programme so varied that it is sure to be a success with everyone that experiences it. Guests will be treated to a fashion show co-ordinated by 2013’s Mrs Durban, Karen Landman. The show will focus particularly on beach ware, and will be complimented with performances by fire dancers and parkour demonstrations in order to ensure a truly stunning visual spectacle. In addition, Karen Landman will also be the image consultant and wellness coach for the fashion show. A showcase of the entrants for the Miss Ballito 2013 is not to be missed, and ideal opportunity for family and friends to participate in the voting for your favourite to secure a place in the Miss Ballito competition.
For those more geared towards the culinary aspects of KwaDukuza culture, the exhibition will be holding its very own “So You Think You Can Cook – Ballito Style?” competition, pitting eight teams against each other for the coveted title of Coastal Living Chef. Each team will consist of one professional and one amateur chef, who will compete against the clock and each other to produce the best Ballito-style dish that they can within sixty minutes. The first and second nights of the competition will be elimination rounds, leading to a tense and exhilarating final on the third night. The winning duo will walk away with the title, as well as R10,000 in cash for the amateur team-mate, and a media prize worth R100,000. With such prizes at stake, the event promises to be intense, captivating and highly entertaining. It will be presided over and judged by celebrity chef Jodi-Ann Pearton, while pro surfers Steven Sawyer, Matt Bromley and Josh Redman will be participating for charity.
“There’s a significant gap between my love for good food and my cooking skills. So I’m very amped to get involved with some top chefs, cook up a storm and learn how to make epic meals. Also looking forward too showing up fellow surf competitor, Steve Sawyer, in our first ever cooking battle.” said pro surfer Matt Bromley.
The exhibition will also host the cooking competition specifically for children, ensuring that they too have the chance to demonstrate their skills in the kitchen. Participating children will pair up with students from the International Hotel School to create “Breakfast in Bed for Mom”, with the winning child earning the title of Coastal Living Fine Young Cooks Chef Award 2013, as well as other exciting prizes.
Alongside the catwalks and competitions of the Coastal Living Bru exhibition, guests will have the opportunity to peruse the many stalls and displays dedicated to artesian food, wine and brewing. The emphasis of vendor’s wares will err strongly on the side of the local, organic and homegrown, with the aim of providing something special for every taste. The focus on the uniqueness of North Coast cuisine will also be underlined by the representation of some of the area’s most famous restaurants, who will be offering taster menus for under R40. Finally, the wine connoisseurs among the audience will be delighted by the wine auction, where they will have the chance to bid for exceptional premium bottles and rare vintages.
Paul Garratt, General Manager for La Montagne resort and spa in Ballito is excited for the new exhibition, saying “La Montagne has been very proud and fortunate to have been an active partner with the Mr Price Pro Ballito for the past 5 years, this year is going to prove to be the best yet with the addition of the “Coastal Living Bru” food and wine festival. I believe that all festival attendees are in for a real treat this year and I am urging them to come and enjoy what is going to be a great festival.”
Funds raised at the Coastal Living Bru will be donated to the Red Cap Foundation which carries out the Corporate Social Investment projects for the Mr Price Group.
The Foundation carries out invaluable work with South Africa’s youth, ranging from newborn babies to young adults up to the age of twenty-five. They focus specifically on improving the nation’s education system and tackling unemployment among young people. The foundation’s vision for South Africa is one where young people create positive social change by being inspired, healthy and engaged citizens.