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May 2010 Issue 34

Circulation 40 052

D U R B A N ’ s

b e s t

g u i d e

f o r

p ar e n t s

let’s celebrate! your must-have party guide

low-fuss activities that are

big on fun



of Durban’s top party suppliers

the perfect party

cheat sheet health



birthday recipes entertainment

I have spent many hours researching all things party. And my children have attended what must be at least 10 times as many. It seems like yesterday that the invitations involved ball ponds and push bikes and, now, my 15-year-old has been invited to a foam party at an under-18 club. When I phone the management to check on the club, they assure me it’s all “good clean fun”. No kidding! “No drugs, no alcohol, no leaving the club until home time.” Closing time? “Oh, 1am.” Great, I’ll be there at 10pm! Thankfully my youngest, being eight, is still very much in the realm of the good old-fashioned birthday party and, with her in mind, I’ve collected some great ideas that I plan to use for as many parties as possible (who knows what under-18 clubs will be offering in 2018?). Some of my favourites are: Make your own memories. Create your own studio with a home-made backdrop, digital camera and a colour printer. (You can easily upload images to to apply free, playful photo frames, which are great to use as thank you cards.) Create a bowling alley in your back garden. Take 10 clear plastic bottles, fill them with water and then add a couple of drops of food colouring to each. Stand them up on flat ground, and use party streamers as lane margins. Arrange your own fun fair. Have the party at your neighbourhood park and give each child tokens for taking part in the activities. Set up a face-painting booth, a “tattoo” table and games such as “throw the bean bag into the clown’s mouth” and “pin the tail on the donkey”. Serve hot dogs, popcorn and home-made lemonade. For other DIY party-activity ideas see page 24 or turn to our directory (see page 30) for people who can help you create the sort of celebration you’re looking for. But remember, it’s a birthday, not a wedding! Thankfully there’s still time before we need to be thinking about those. All sorted? I think so.

Hunter House P U B L IS H I N G

Publisher Lisa Mc Namara •

Editorial Managing Editor Marina Zietsman • Features Editor Elaine Eksteen • Calendar Editor Tracy Ellis •

monthly circulation Cape Town’s ChildTM 45 158 Joburg’s ChildTM 45 160 Durban’s ChildTM 40 052

to advertise Tel: 031 209 2200 • Fax: 031 207 3429 Email: Website:

Editorial Assistant Lucille Kemp • Copy Editors Nikki Benatar Debbie Hathway

Art Designers Mariette Barkhuizen • Nikki-leigh Piper •

Advertising Director Lisa Mc Namara •

Client Relations PUBLISHER’S PHOTOGRAPH: Brooke Fasani

Client Relations Manager Michele Jones • Client Relations Consultants Tracy Long • Natasha Whittaker •

To Subscribe Helen Xavier •

Accounts Helen Xavier • Nicolene Baldy • Tel: 021 465 6093 • Fax: 021 462 2680


All our magazines are printed on recycled paper.

Free requested Jan 10 – Mar 10

Durban’s Child TM is published monthly by Hunter House Publishing, PO Box 12002, Mill Street, 8010. Office address: 1st Floor, MB House, 641 Ridge Road, Overport, 4091. Tel: 031 209 2200, fax: 031 207 3429, email: durban @ Annual subscriptions (for 11 issues) cost R165, including VAT and postage inside SA. Printed by Paarl Web. Copyright subsists in all work published in Durban’s Child TM . We welcome submissions but retain the unrestricted right to change any received copy. We are under no obligation to return unsolicited copy. The magazine, or part thereof, may not be reproduced or adapted without the prior written permission of the publisher. We take care to ensure our articles are accurate and balanced but cannot accept responsibility for loss or damage that may arise from reading them.

May 2010


may 2010

upfront 3

a note from lisa


 ver to you o readers respond


features 12 h  ome-made party Donna Cobban chooses the DIY route for her son’s second birthday 14 m  anners maketh the minor Donna Cobban is all for a return to good old-fashioned manners 18 rash decision?  ith measles on the rise, the vaccine w is back under the microscope. Glynis Horning investigates 22 p  icnic for a princess in an extract from his cookbook Gatherings: A Year of Invitations, Nataniël shares special birthday recipes for little girls

regulars 8



upfront with paul

some days should just be cancelled, says Paul Kerton

30 r esource: the ultimate party guide we bring you Durban’s most comprehensive guide to all things party related


24 hip, hip, hooray! a list of easy, yet fabulous, ideas for party entertainment. By Elaine Eksteen 38 what’s on in may


42 last laugh some white lies told to children, says Sam Wilson, are just plain dangerous

17 e  ating for sleeping Hannah Kaye explains how your child’s diet can influence his sleeping patterns

classified ads 40 family marketplace


14 this month’s cover images are supplied by:

Brooke Fasani

May 2010

La CupCakerie 012 804 0183



May 2010


over to you hold your horses

left is right

I have decided to stop advertising in Child Magazine because the response is just too great and I cannot cope with the demand. Your publication is just amazing and the response has been so fabulous that I can’t keep up and can now just operate by word of mouth. Thank you for your great publication and your fantastic service. Monica Haralambous of Made by Monica

I am writing in reply to your article “is left right?” in the February 2010 issue. I have been a sign writer all my working life. Over the years I have come across a few left-handed sign writers, but there aren’t many. Artistic, neat and creative, these chaps were all very good at their jobs. Many years ago I met a chap called Edgar Lovatt. This man could take a brush in either hand and write two signs at the same time! If a person is meant to be lefthanded, why change this? They have many advantages over right-handed people. To hold a pencil or pen in the left hand has always seemed awkward, but try holding a signing brush and doing lettering – it’s amazing to watch. Over the years I have found left-handers in many ways more gifted than right-handers – sportsman, musicians, cooks, you name it. Blackie Sanders (78 years young)

be car wise I would appreciate it if you could print the following as a warning to all parents: Yesterday when I fetched my son Luke from school, we had only been in the car for a few minutes when the engine started smoking. Just five minutes later there were flames and my car was covered in smoke. In less than 20 minutes it was completely burnt out. The car had been making a funny humming noise and I presumed it was only the fan belt, but I never expected this! It took the fire department 20 minutes to reach us and I only had time to save my umbrella and glasses. Believe me, the stench of burning car is horrible. No-one was hurt, but all I keep thinking is: “What if…” Please moms and dads, never, ever leave your children alone in the car. Things can happen so quickly. Bex

May 2010

whereas here in Johannesburg things are more plastic and rushed – children don’t have a chance to just “be”. I thoroughly enjoyed your April article on Asperger’s syndrome. It made for interesting reading. I would like to learn more about how to teach coping skills to these children. Society should learn to be more tolerant of difference. Advertising and marketing companies stress how important it is to be different and to think out of the box, but the modern school system doesn’t teach children (or certain teachers) to be so tolerant. It seems it’s easier to send the child off to a remedial school or for intervention with therapists. Keep up the good work. Mary Anderson

write to us We would like to know what’s on your mind.

dealing with difference

Send your letters to: or

Thanks for a great magazine, which I love. My daughter used to bring it home from school when she was in the lower grades, but now I get it from our library. Sam Wilson’s column is a favourite of mine and I can so relate to her child-rearing ideals. She obviously lives in Cape Town and has a more laid-back approach to life,

PO Box 12002, Mill Street, 8010. We reserve the right to edit and shorten submitted letters. The opinions reflected here are those of our readers and are not necessarily held by Hunter House Publishing.



May 2010


giveaways in may hey, good looking! Naartjie clothing is playful, vibrant, colourful and natural. For a fashion-forward wardrobe for your children visit the Naartjie store closest to you. Keep up to date with Naartjie’s in-store events by signing up to receive their newsletter and message alerts via Naartjie stores are situated in Gateway (031 566 4444), La Lucia (031 572 7983), Pavilion (031 265 5929) and Westwood (031 266 0512). This month, readers of Durban’s Child stand a chance to win one of 21 Naartjie gift vouchers, valued at R300 each. All you need to do is visit Click on “about us” then click on “a true story” and watch the little tree grow. Count the number of naartjies on the tree and then email your name, contact details and the number of naartjies to info@naartjie. with “Naartjie DBN Win” in the subject line before 31 May 2010. Only one entry per reader.

Congratulations to our March winners Colleen Mervis who wins a fairy party dress, Christine Collier and Ingrid Hatton who each win a SwimFin and Meesha Chowdrey who wins a Kiddimoto push bike.

May 2010

a mother’s day treat Le Creuset has come out with yet another asset for your kitchen, a sturdy 30cm enamelled cast-iron roasting and baking dish. It is big enough to hold a whole chicken, fillet of beef or leg of lamb, and resistant enough to withstand the searing heat of the oven. It is also perfect for pasta, desserts or pies. While Le Creuset’s baker is great as a serving dish at the table (thanks to efficient heat retention properties), it is safe for the oven, grill, freezer and dishwasher, and versatile enough for everything from roasting and deglazing to baking. The baker is suitable for all hobs and comes with a lifetime guarantee. Get to the Le Creuset boutique store in La Lucia at Shop 3C, La Lucia Mall, William Campbell Drive. For more info, contact: 031 572 5045 or Readers of Durban’s Child stand a chance to win one of six cast-iron rectangular Le Creuset bakers, valued at R963 each. To enter, email your details to with “Le Creuset DBN Win” in the subject line or post your entry to Le Creuset DBN Win, PO Box 12002, Mill Street, 8010 before 31 May 2010. Only one entry per reader.


upfront with paul

sorry, today is cancelled Some mornings we’re just not in the mood, says PAUL KERTON.



ou know those mornings, fellow parents, when you just don’t feel like it? They don’t happen often, thank goodness. But you lie there and, though there’s no feasible or legitimate excuse for not feeling like it, you just don’t. You went to bed early; your body is sound; your emotions are stable; you are well fed and watered; you haven’t got the tummy bug that is going around (which it has been for centuries), ditto the flu; and an asteroid hasn’t landed in your back garden… But, you wake up and just don’t feel like it. It is the unbearable lightness, or in our case, weightiness, of being. The responsibility we heap upon our own shoulders on a daily basis is unreal. We all pack 48 hours into 12, or try to, and we do this semi-unconsciously since we have


programmed ourselves to accept that this is the norm. No wonder the world is splattered with the dropped balls of good intentions and the burnt out minds of once smart young people reduced to gibbering wrecks. You are the CEO of a small but busy company, The Family, which is open for business 24/7. If you don’t function properly, nothing happens. Yet we cannot do what we set out to do in 24 hours. It is not even remotely possible. Our grandparents spent all day deciding whether or not to buy a wholewheat loaf or a white loaf, while modern parents make a thousand decisions a minute. We bite off far more than we can chew. Can’t-say-no mothers commit to another set of unselfish tasks: ferrying half the school across country, baking cakes for 400. Dads make promises to

be at the ballet, the concert, the game. Even as they say it, they’re thinking; “Jeez, how am I going to make this one work?” It’s a wonder we ever complete any task. Getting children to school at all, never mind on time, is a massive achievement. And that’s if there are two of you and a super-Gran riding shotgun. I take my hat off to all the single parents out there who do all this on their own. Events conspire against us. These days it is impossible to get anywhere fast. It’s no longer possible to circumnavigate our cities, forget something and casually go back and get it. Today there is no going back – so everything has to be planned down to the finest nano-detail, with military precision. So I suppose I’d better get out of bed, pull on my uniform and assume the

Paul, Sabina and Saskia

collective role of taxi driver, restaurateur, psychologist, paramedic, carer, lovegiver, protector, story-teller, entertainer, fixer… as parents there is nothing we cannot do. So, sit down, put your feet up for five minutes, leave preparing the packed lunch until later, and give yourself a pat on the back. Having children and maintaining their happy survival is an incredible achievement. You are a hero. What? I forgot the bread for the girls’ sarmies? So shoot me now. Paul Kerton is the author of Fab Dad: A Man’s Guide to Fathering.

May 2010


May 2010



May 2010



home-made party Donna Cobban decides rightly or wrongly not to outsource her two-year-old son’s


or weeks I had been meaning to call the local animal farm and book my son’s party. I had trawled through their menu and, even though my two-yearold had never touched pizza, I thought, hey, he may well like it and surely not all pizzas have processed cheese? Yet try as I might, every time I reached for the phone, something stopped me. When I reached inside to discover the reason for my delay tactics I hit on it at last – I wanted to have his party at home. So what if I have a tall, small and very narrow doublestorey Victorian home totally unsuited to crowds, let alone little crowds. No matter, I thought, I would manage somehow. And


May 2010

then my thoughts evolved even further: if I was going to have it at home, then why not have everything home-made and homebaked? There would be no hidden MSG, E numbers or preservatives and, heaven forbid, processed cheese! Yup, this whole party idea was just getting better and better, or so I thought at the time. The party was on a Saturday afternoon from 3pm to 5pm. I’d hosted many a dinner party in my day – how hard could this be? Just to be sure, I started preparing on Tuesday evening. I put on some music and kneaded dates into balls. I soon had a large bowl of neatly rounded coconutdusted date balls. They were delicious!



birthday party and to make everything herself!

My son sat in a pile of torn wrapping paper, delighted with what he’d found within. Utter chaos abounded as the balloons were spotted and handed out to roars of delight.

I went to bed exhausted and reeking of dates. The next night, Wednesday, I made cheese straws – so much easier than date balls. I packed them away in airtight containers and went off to bed. Thursday night I rested, but Friday, being the night before the grand event, I was hard at it again: baby quiches, homemade hummus, carrot and cucumber sticks. My son’s father and I (who don’t live together but are still fabulous friends – most of the time) had many a harried phone call that night surrounding helium-balloon collections (always take a duvet cover!) and infant drinking options (I suddenly realised that perhaps not everyone would be partial


to my homemade lemonade). The father kindly mentioned back-up food options in case mine failed. I scoffed; I had it all under control! The day dawned and, at around 2:45pm, pandemonium hit. What about chairs and sun umbrellas for outside – the temperature was soaring? What about cold beers? There was no room in the fridge. Mini pita breads to go with the homemade hummus had been forgotten; the fruit hedgehog had no spikes and, I knew it, I should have bought sweets. There were going to be some older children, some aware ones… what would they think? Perhaps they’d be glad I was not their mom – one positive

spin on it. I started having mild palpitations at the total lack of preservatives, when my son came tumbling down the stairs backwards, his hands still firmly gripping the video recorder he had just found. We scooped him up screaming and welcomed the first guest. And in they streamed, one tot following another. Soon tots were falling over tots while adults stepped over them gingerly. My son sat in a pile of torn wrapping paper, delighted with what he’d found within. Utter chaos abounded as the balloons were spotted and handed out to roars of delight. People found places to perch, and if there was a raised eyebrow in the house

over the absence of Smarties or Gummy Bears, I didn’t notice. Food was consumed (there was far too much), wine and tea ranneth over (blessed are those with two-year-olds, as organised games are but a thing of the future). Later neighbours poured through the door and the merriment continued. That evening, as I sat with a few remaining neighbours and fed carrot sticks and hummus to my child (I was too tired to think about dinner), and a few leftover balloons started to descend from the ceiling, I was glad that I had not made that call to the animal farm, even if the father and I were so busy that we forgot to take a single photo!

May 2010




maketh the minor DONNA COBBAN looks at what it takes to uphold century-old traditions.


recently had a British house guest. He’s a friend’s fiancé and she arrived from distant lands with said man in tow. They stayed with me for a few nights and at times he was so well mannered I thought he might be sending me up. He washed dishes, baby-sat, cleaned the bath, made tea, shopped and cooked, ate with his mouth closed, kept his elbows off the table and the toilet seat down. I studied him in much the same way Jane Goodall might have studied an ape. My aim here was personal: I want my son to grow up to be a little like this. I ask him about his mother: “What did she do to make you this way?” “Oh, not a lot,” he tells me. “I was raised by a fairly strict mother who, despite

success. “Our children learn their first words from us, so use ‘thank you’ and ‘please’ from the day they are born and remember to say things like ‘Thank you for being so patient while I changed your nappy’”. Fouzia directs me to a quote from Wisdom: Peace: The Greatest Gift One Generation Can Give To Another by Andrew Zuckerman. It’s a book containing magical pieces of wisdom gathered from all corners of the globe. Jimmy Little, an Aboriginal Australian, shares a piece of wisdom told to him by his father: “Son, there are three words that will open any door: the door of a building, the door of the mind, the door of the heart, any door you like. Three words; don’t forget, always use them. ‘Thank you’ and ‘Please’”.

her mutterings of: ‘You could get a bloody tank through there’ to dithering motorists, wouldn’t stand for backchat, excessive profanity or even slang like ‘ain’t’”. I am impressed. When his best man and best friend arrives a few days later, the two of them seem cut from the same cloth. So I pose the same question to the best man. He believes it was a combination of his Islamic upbringing, strict parents, and a steady stream of visitors in and out of the family home. In addition to this they both subscribe to the “Do unto others as you would have done unto you” school of thought – a simple yet effective navigation tool in this life, I muse, while watching them wash my dishes. Again. I have a long way to go before my son will be jumping up to do dishes and display his fine manners, but I am told by Fouzia Ryklief at the Parent Centre in Cape Town that starting early is the key to long-term


May 2010

Fouzia adds to this: saying thank you is more than just words; it is about the acknowledgement of another person’s contribution. “We all need this acknowledgement because it encourages us to continue sharing and contributing towards the wellbeing of others,” she says. “Saying ‘please’ automatically softens our requests. Without it, requests become orders or commands, neither of which do anything for sustaining relationships.” This all sounds very simple in practice, so why aren’t we being overrun with smiling children doffing their caps at us as they pass? A brief stint spent teaching at innercity schools in London had me believing that ill-mannered children were products of ill-mannered parents, yet the adults I encounter in life are by and large wellmannered beings, both there and here, so long as they are not behind the wheel of a car. durban’s


He washed dishes, baby-sat, cleaned the bath, made tea, shopped and cooked, ate with his mouth closed, kept his elbows off the table and the toilet seat down.

manners training So what has caused such a swift decline in the manners stakes over the years? I turn to Wendy Mogel’s book The Blessing of a Skinned Knee for a few answers. She thinks we are breeding disrespectful children largely because parents do not demand respect from their offspring. The reason, according to Mogel, is that “deep down parents don’t believe they deserve it, or that they can master the struggle”. Likening dog training to child rearing, Mogel says: “a democratic system doesn’t work very well for dogs or children; it just makes them feel insecure”. And if you are in any doubt, according to Mogel, dogs that are allowed to become dominant over their owners are known to be both timid and bossy. It’s the same, she says, for children. I love well-mannered dogs and I also love my friend Sarah’s son Daniel. When he was around five years old I went to the Eastern Cape to visit them. He was in his room working on a Lego creation. We stood at the door and I was introduced. He looked up at me and said “It’s a pleasure to meet you”. I nearly fell over and asked Sarah what she had done to raise such a well-mannered five-year-old. “He lives by example,” she laughed as she put on the kettle. “And it’s a response durban’s

I have encouraged since he could talk,” she added. While I am striving to do the same, I am from time to time met with defiant refusals when I ask my two-year-old to wave good-bye. Fouzia assures me that at around two years of age, children needing to make their own decisions and refusing to comply with our idea of how they should behave is normal behaviour. When it comes to greeting people, we are all creatures of different habits and our children may well differ from us. “Trying to force a child to give a hug or a kiss when they don’t want to can be an intrusive act for the child and the other person,” warns Fouzia. In addition, she cautions that: “Hugging and kissing should be something natural between the child and someone he is very close to – such as the parents or grandparents. It must happen only within the context of a healthy, close, on going relationship.” Speaking of grandparents makes me think of how my junior-school class used to visit a nearby old-age home each term. I can still remember lining up in front of a sea of delighted, wizened faces and singing my heart out to various songs from The Sound of Music. Following this we would be treated to tea and biscuits and had to mingle among the residents. I loved these visits and am glad they form May 2010


part of my memories. I am also glad to hear that it’s still common practice today, with many schools “adopting” homes and going on regular visits. It’s a vital step in learning to respect and appreciate the older generation and, more than this, to value their presence in this world. Perhaps as Mogel suggests, we “need to need” the older generation more than we do. “Asking our own parents to do something for us demonstrates to our children that you cherish the unique contributions your parents make to the family,” she suggests.

meet, greet and eat Manners seem to fall into two camps: social and table. So, while your children may have mastered “please” and “thank you”, stopped interrupting you, and even offered to pour you some juice while doing the same for themselves, the elbows sadly still dig into the table, and bits of food still fly from their mouths as they recount their latest adventures. As a child I was taken to a swanky restaurant about once a year where waiters wore suits, straws were not offered, and three courses were the minimum fare. This necessitated being taught the difference


May 2010

between a fish, dinner and butter knife, a soup spoon and a dessert spoon, and that you tear a bread roll and don’t cut it, and butter it – bit by very small bit. Those evenings spent in disguised etiquette training have proved invaluable over the years and I plan on doing the same for my child. If nothing else, it will render him comfortable in any setting – be it a formal work function or dining with royalty. But in the meantime, while he is still very little, I shall remain mindful of my own table manners in the hope and belief that he will follow by example. For, as any etiquette trainer worth their weight will tell you, it’s all about modelling, modelling, modelling. And I shall keep checking in with my friend’s fiancé. I had reason to call her last week and she told me that I might want to include this: when he flies he refuses to put his seat back even when he needs to sleep, as it might be uncomfortable for the person behind him. This reminds me of a quote by the late Emily Post, the American author of etiquette and manners, who said: “Manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others. If you have that awareness, you have good manners, no matter which fork you use.”

a starting point A few general manners your family might like to adopt: • Don’t interrupt someone when they are on the phone, or speaking to another person. • Greet your guests at the door and look them in the eye. Escort them to the door when they leave. • Offer refreshments to your guests. • Send a thank-you card or email for gifts received. • Knock on closed doors and wait for an answer before entering. • Treat people the same way you would like to be treated. • Honour and respect your parents.

And when you’re not at home? While your child may have mastered manners in your own home, visiting other people, particularly when they are of another culture, brings with it a whole host of brand-new manners needing to be learnt. Every home is different so encourage your child to take the lead from the host and if shoes are removed at the door, they should follow suit. Or if men and women are seated in different areas, they need to take heed of this. Greeting people in the language of the home is courteous and will endear your child forever more, so it’s well worth encouraging them in this regard.

Encourage the use of the following magic words: • Please. • Thank you. • It’s a pleasure. • Excuse me. • Nice to meet you. • May I? • I’m sorry.



eating for sleeping Your child’s diet might just be the key to putting those wide-awake nights behind you, says HANNAH KAYE.



aving a child that sleeps through the night seems to have become a reflection of good parenting. Admitting to a group of moms that nighttime crying or the pitter-patter of little footsteps towards your bedroom in the early hours of the morning frequently occur in your home, can make you feel like a failure. Especially if they’re looking bright eyed after another eight hours of uninterrupted sleep. You may be asking yourself what you’re doing wrong. You’ve read the books; you’ve established a regular sleep routine; you’ve tried controlled crying, and co-sleeping. Yet sleep, or lack thereof, continues to be a major problem. “People often ask me if Maya (age three), is a good sleeper,” says her mom, Dani Bergman. “For many months I used to laugh and say no, but she’s a great eater. After seeing a nutritional therapist,


I learnt how I could use Maya’s strength to play into her weakness. Making some dietary changes has had a remarkable effect on her sleeping patterns, and I can honestly say she is now sleeping through the night – just in time for the arrival of our next baby.” Perhaps, as was true for Maya, the answer might lie in your child’s diet. But where to begin? Even subtle changes can make a difference. Here are some suggestions: Keep a food and sleep diary. Analysing this information may help you find some patterns in your child’s sleeping habits. Once you identify them, you may be able to find a solution. Cut out over-stimulating foods. It’s best not to give children food and drink that contain caffeine, such as hot chocolate, tea, cola and chocolate desserts. Even caffeine early in the day can disrupt your child’s

sleep cycle. Foods containing tyramine, a brain stimulant, should be avoided close to bedtime. These include tomatoes, bacon, cheese, potato, chocolate, sugar, sausages and Marmite. Investigate healthier options. Reduce your family’s intake of refined carbohydrates such as bread, pasta, cakes and crisps. Swapping to complex carbohydrates such as wholemeal pasta, oat or millet porridge, buckwheat pancakes and pulses will help to stabilise blood-sugar levels. (Low blood sugar is often the cause of the 3am wakeup, the result of too much glucose being taken out of the blood after a highly refined meal. This drop in the blood-sugar level, following the initial high, leads to the early morning wake-up call.) These carbohydrates, which include fruit and vegetables, are much higher in minerals like calcium and magnesium, which have calming properties.

Read food labels. Get into the habit of examining the ingredients of the things you buy. Additives and preservatives are highly stimulatory. For example, tartrazine and MSG are both excitotoxins and will disrupt sleep. Try an exclusion diet. Continual waking and crying at night can be manifestations of food intolerances. The removal of dairy or wheat could bring your family longawaited relief within a few weeks. Lowgrade inflammation associated with wheat and dairy intolerances initiates a stimulatory process, affecting neurotransmitters involved in sleep. Other possible clues to food intolerance can include a regular sore tummy, ear infections and a constant runny nose. Perhaps the smallest dietary changes or exclusions may bring about what both you and your child need most: a good night’s sleep.

May 2010



rash decision? The recent measles outbreak has put vaccine safety


May 2010

“The current infection rate indicates that a high number of vulnerable individuals have not been inoculated, leaving them susceptible to circulating measles or importation from other countries.”

This is based on religious objections and, something that continues to frustrate medical and scientific professionals worldwide: suspicion that vaccination is unsafe.

a feeling that there’s no smoke without “There’s fire. Parents should decide for themselves. – Jill Stacey, director, Autism SA Reasons for the “immunity gap” range from children simply not presenting for immunisation to missed opportunities for vaccination, he says. But there are also parents who make a conscious decision not to have their children vaccinated.


ust when we thought modern immunisation campaigns had given measles the needle, a rash of cases has rocked the country. Since January last year, the National Institute for Communicable Disease (NICD) has reported more than 8 240 cases, affecting every province but particularly Gauteng (4 498 cases by March this year), KwaZulu-Natal (884) and the Western Cape (671). Yet in 2008 there were just 40 cases countrywide, and in 2007, 33. What’s going on? “Comprehensive immunisation programmes under the government’s Expanded Programme for Immunisation are key to preventing measles outbreaks,” says Adrian Puren, deputy director of Virology at the NCID, a division of the National Health Laboratory Service.

There have been pockets of vaccine dissent since it was first developed by Edward Jenner in the 1790s. But in the past 12 years it’s become a worldwide epidemic, spread by more than 30 dedicated anti-vaccination websites,

shelves of books, and talk shows from Larry King Live to The Oprah Winfrey Show. The catalyst was a controversial study by Dr Andrew Wakefield of the Royal Free Hospital in London published in The Lancet in 1998, linking MMR (the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine) with autism – the distressing disorder that impairs social development and thought processes. Suddenly alternative-health advocates, including certain homeopaths, naturopaths and chiropractors, were ranged on one side, with most mainstream doctors and scientists on the other, and alarmed and confused parents in the middle. A number of these parents have since opted not to have their children vaccinated, or to put it off until they are older and have “naturally



back under the microscope. By Glynis Horning

strengthened” immune systems, as one Durban mother put it. (Her firstborn had a convulsion after his first vaccination, so she insisted on waiting until her daughter was two before taking her for any shots.) Yet, by trying to avoid possible vaccination side effects, health authorities say parents are exposing not only their own children to infection, but others who may be vulnerable (see “recognise high-risk factors” on page 20). The World Health Organisation had hoped to eradicate measles entirely from Europe by 2010, but to do that, vaccine rates must be 95% in every country – and fears over the MMR controversy are reported to have triggered a sharp drop in vaccine compliance. In Ireland compliance dropped as low as 60% in places, and 1 500 cases and three measles-related deaths were reported in 2000. By 2006 the measles incidence in the UK was 13 times higher than in 1998. There have also been measles outbreaks in Europe (more than 12 000 cases in 2008 and 2009 alone), and in other countries from Israel to Romania, Bulgaria, Japan, New Zealand, Canada and the US, which had its largest outbreak since 1997 in 2008.


The current South African measles outbreak is one of the most serious and widespread, and while fears from the MMR controversy may not have factored directly in cases in deprived communities, where a basic lack of information, education or motivation will need to be addressed, Puren believes it has “a possible role in communities that may well be aware of the vaccine controversy. These islands of non-vaccinated individuals are part of the chains of transmission.”

studying the study Ironically, the Wakefield study behind the controversy has been extensively discredited in the interim. “But it’s not easy to change people’s perceptions,” says Puren. The study involved only 12 children, eight of whom showed signs of autism. More substantial studies since, including one of more than half a million Danish children, 82% of whom had received the MMR vaccine, showed no causal link between MMR and autism. “If anything, the risk of developing autism was marginally lower in children who had been vaccinated,” reads a NICD report.

By 2004, 10 of Wakefield’s 12 co-authors in the study had distanced themselves from it after charges that the results had been manipulated. It also emerged that Wakefield had been hired to carry out another study at the same time, to establish if parents who were claiming their children were harmed by the MMR vaccine had a case. Some of the same children were used in both studies. The Lancet announced that had this been known, it would not have published the study because of conflict of interest, and in February this year it retracted the paper. Wakefield remains adamant in interviews that the scientific results of his study are valid, and there are

many who support him still. Some more vocal individuals accuse government departments and the vaccine industry of cover-ups and collusion for financial gain through vested interests. Critics of the MMR–autism link counter that alternative practitioners profit financially from expensive alternative medications, supplements and treatments, such as chelation therapy (to remove heavy metals from the body). Recently two key arguments linking MMR vaccination and autism have been addressed by vaccine researchers Jeffrey Gerber and Paul Offit in “Vaccines and Autism: A Tale of Shifting Hypotheses” in the University of Chicago journal,

May 2010


Clinical Infectious Diseases. One argument is that giving multiple vaccines overwhelms the immune system. Gerber and Offit found that even “conservative estimates” show that the immune system can handle thousands of viruses at the same time, adding that vaccines make up a fraction of the pathogens (potentially disease-causing germs) a child naturally encounters. The second argument is that thiomersal (or thimerosal), an ethylmercury-containing compound in some vaccines, is toxic to the central nervous system. Gerber and Offit contest this and report that even after thiomersal was taken out of childhood vaccines, autism has been on the rise. There is “absolutely no evidence” to support an MMR–autism connection, says NICD deputy director Lucille Blumberg. “Diseases like measles can lead to severe complications and death,” adds Puren. “Any concern about the possibility of complications needs to be put in context, and seen against the greater good for yourself, your family and your community.” Yet public fears remain. “Autism South Africa (ASA) doesn’t have a stand on the matter because our members are divided,” says its national director Jill Stacey. “For all the scientific arguments, there’s a feeling that there’s no smoke without fire. Parents must decide for themselves.”


May 2010

be measles-aware

spot the signs • Flu-like symptoms one or two weeks after exposure • Dry cough • Runny nose • Reddish eyes • Sore throat • Mouth sores (“Koplik’s spots” with white centres) • Fever • Swollen throat glands • Sensitivity to light • Joint pains • Small bright-red spots that double in size and join in a blotchy rash, starting behind the ears and on the face and spreading to the body, arms and legs. take action • Isolate until the fifth day of rash to protect others. (“One positive case can

quickly spread to up to 17 unprotected and non-immunised cases,” says Fidel Hadebe, director of public information at the Department of Health.) • Bed rest in dim light • Lots of fluids • Soft, bland foods • Lukewarm sponge baths to lower fever • Flush sore eyes with plain saline solution (use an eyedropper, or wipe crusty eyes with damp cottonwool) • Measles is a notifiable disease, so by law you must report even a mild case to your doctor or clinic • Positive cases should receive at least two doses of vitamin A, and patients with eye complications a third. beware of complications • Pneumonia, chronic lung disease • Diarrhoea • Croup • Otitis media (middle-ear infection), deafness • Mouth ulcers • Eye complications, blindness • Convulsions, brain damage recognise high-risk factors • Young age (under a year) • Malnutrition • Over-crowding • Immune deficiency (especially HIV) • Vitamin A deficiency look at vaccinating children The measles vaccine should be given at nine months and 18 months, and is free at public clinics. Mass-immunisation

campaigns like the one just launched (in April 2010) offer additional protection even to children who are fully immunised. For more information visit or call the Vaccine Helpline 0860 160 160. your rights Vaccination is not compulsory in SA, says Lee Baker, MD of Amayeza Info Systems, who runs the Vaccine Helpline. “However, the Department of Education can refuse children entry to schools if they have not had their shots,” she says. These include measles vaccinations, which are part of the government’s Extended Programme for Immunisation. The three-in-one MMR vaccination is not part of this, and parents must have it done privately if they want their children protected from mumps and rubella. Single vaccines used to be available for mumps and rubella, but this is no longer the case. “It’s better to have one jab than three,” says Baker. “All vaccines, just like your toothpaste, have potential side effects,” says Dr Paul Sinclair, a paediatrician at Life Vincent Pallotti Hospital in Cape Town. “But they get safer through better technology and formulation. MMR does not cause autism, but if you are concerned, there is little harm delaying MMR until three years of age, as long as the measles vaccine has been administered early,” he says.



May 2010


book extract

picnic for a


In an extract from his cookbook Gatherings: A Year of Invitations, NATANIËL shares recipes from the birthday party of a child close to his heart. Dali is my godchild’s younger sister, a beautiful, gentle, fairy-like little thing. When she came to Earth we all fell in love with her immediately. Dali has always loved anything pink and girlie and has always been treated like a princess, so when I started planning her sixth

birthday party, there were only three words: pink, princess and picnic. The food had to be beautiful and as natural as possible – half the world’s children are hysterical because of the toxic things they are fed at parties. We also had to include some of Dali’s favourites, thus the meringues.

menu strawberry milk chewy meringues small cheeseand-onion pizzas butterfly cakes

strawberry milk (per serving) 200ml low-fat milk 2T strawberry syrup (see below) Whisk together until foamy. Pour into a mug. strawberry syrup 500g fresh strawberries, chopped ¼ cup sugar ¼ cup water 1t vanilla extract Heat ingredients in a saucepan and let it simmer for 10 minutes. Allow to cool, then purée in a food processor. Cover and refrigerate.

chewy meringues (Makes 24) 3 egg whites 110g castor sugar ¼t cream of tartar 1 drop red natural food colouring 2T cornflour 1T icing sugar 100g strawberry wafers, crushed Set oven to 110°C. Beat egg whites in a clean bowl with an electric mixer until foamy. Add cream of tartar and one teaspoon of the castor sugar, and beat for one minute. Add remaining castor sugar, one teaspoon at a time, beating for at least 30 seconds between additions. Add colouring and beat for six more minutes until egg whites are very smooth and stiff peaks form. Sift cornflour and icing sugar together and fold in gently. Fold in the crushed wafers. Line a baking sheet with wax paper. With a teaspoon, drop mounds of meringue onto it. Bake in preheated oven for one hour. Turn off heat and leave meringues in the oven while it cools down. When completely cool, store in an airtight container.


May 2010


small cheese-and-onion pizzas 1T butter 1 onion, chopped sea salt 1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed 2T finely chopped fresh parsley 1 cup grated cheddar 8 cherry tomatoes, sliced extra chopped parsley for garnish Set oven to 180°C. Heat butter in a saucepan, add onion and caramelise over low heat for about 1 hour. Remove from heat and season lightly with salt. Roll out pastry and cut out 8 circles of about 10cm in diameter. Use a knife to mark the edges, and pierce the insides with a fork. Spread a small amount of onion over each. Sprinkle with cheese and arrange slices of tomato on top. Place on a baking tray and bake in preheated oven until golden, about 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with a little parsley. (For adults, freshly ground black pepper can be added to the mixture and more parsley sprinkled on top.)

butterfly cakes 1 cup butter, softened at room temperature 1 cup sugar 3 eggs 1t vanilla extract 1 cup self-raising flour ¼ cup dried cranberries 1½T cocoa powder butterfly sprinkles paper or silk butterflies, mounted on toothpicks Set oven to 170°C. In a mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Sift in flour and mix. Stir in cranberries. Divide batter in half and mix cocoa into one half. Fill 12 small ring moulds with chocolate mixture until they’re a quarter full. Top with the same amount of vanilla mixture. Bake in a preheated oven for 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from the moulds and let them cool on a wire rack. Fill holes with soft vanilla icing (see below). Decorate with butterfly sprinkles and paper or silk butterflies. soft vanilla icing ½ cup butter, softened at room temperature 2 cups icing sugar, sifted 1T warm water 1t vanilla paste Mix together until creamy.

about the book Nataniël loves to cook. He cooks “for love, for peace, for fun, for hunger, for richer, for poorer…” In his fourth cookbook, Gatherings: A Year of Invitations, the much-loved South African singer and entertainer celebrates “a year of special events”, from birthday parties and dinners for two, to midweek entertaining ideas and chilly-evening meals with friends. Gatherings is published by Human & Rousseau.


May 2010



hip, hip hooray! Your birthday party cheat sheet – a list of easy-to-organise, fabulously


bike and balloon rally

what’s potting

ready Children will need to bring along their pushbikes, so remember to send out a request with the invitations. Borrow a couple of bikes and have these as backup for those who forget theirs. You’ll need as many helium balloons as there are guests (plus a few in reserve), and chalk to mark up a course on your driveway. get set Map out a track and include a stop street or two and a traffic light (enlist a parent’s help – green plate for go, red for stop). age 2 to go Kick off by handing guests a helium 3 balloon when they arrive; these are then tied to their bikes. Children can scoot around the course at leisure, or parents can help them along. A talking stop sign (Grandpa might like this job), chatty traffic lights (perhaps Dad has the sense of humour for this one?) and a human tunnel will add to the fun.

ready You’ll need a couple of punnets of seedlings (try herbs like basil or flowers such as pansies or marigolds), potting soil, small terracotta pots, a watering can or two and, spoons that can be used as little spades. Then something for decorating the pots – for younger children: ear buds, acrylic paint and strips of ribbon; for older children: sequins, mosaic tiles, craft glue, beads and raffia. Ask children to bring an apron, otherwise you will need to provide something to protect their clothing. get set Arrange the equipment outside, or in your family room with lots of newspaper on the table and floor – somewhere you don’t mind mess. go Children can decorate their pots. Little ones can use an ear bud to create a polka-dot design on the body of the pot and then, with help, tie a piece of ribbon of their choice round the neck. Older children can stick mosaic tiles round the rim, or decorate with sequins, or thread beads onto raffia and wind round the pot. When they are done they can select a seedling and plant it, which they then get to take home with them.

May 2010

age 4 to 6



fun activities plus a party-planning check list. By ELAINE EKSTEEN

age 5 to 8


racing car relay

create a cupcake

ready You’ll need some large cardboard boxes (ask your local supermarket if they have any packaging you could recycle), paint, brushes, scissors, glue, colourful paper, plastic packaging for decorating; red-and-white danger tape and tent pegs; a few cycling helmets. Ask children to bring an apron or old shirt to work in, otherwise you’ll need to provide something to protect their clothing. get set Use danger tape secured in place with tent pegs and make lanes (to match the number of teams) in your garden or the neighbourhood park. go Divide the children into teams, and get them to build and decorate their “racing cars”. It’s probably a good idea to serve the food once the cars are built (this’ll give time for the glue to dry – and you can add the odd staple to secure things before the race). This is also a good time to take a photo of each car – they probably won’t look quite their best after the relay! Then arrange half the team at the one end of a lane, the rest at the other. In turn, each team member must first put on and fasten the helmet, jump into the car and carry it along with them down the lane. When they reach the end the driver hops out, hands over the helmet and the next driver continues. Award prizes for best-looking car, most-sturdy vehicle and winning team.

ready You’ll need sufficient un-iced cupcakes (if you’d prefer to avoid the hassle of baking your own, store-bought chocolate or blueberry muffins will work just as well); ingredients for making a few colours of icing, and sprinkles, chocolate buttons and other bits for decorating the cupcakes. get set Prepare the icing and set up a table with all the goodies for decorating, plus some palette knives or sucker sticks for applying the icing. go The children can decorate their own cupcakes. You could get them to vote for their favourites or just take a photo of each (to send with the thank-you note) and allow them to munch on their creations.

age 3 to 8

May 2010


photo trail ready This is the techno take on the nature/treasure hunt. Instead of bringing back the item, teams must return with a photo of each object or activity on the list. You’ll need a few fairly indestructible point-and-shoot digital cameras. (Perhaps some of the children are able to bring their own. Chat to parents when you hand out the invitations.) get set Visit the venue to familiarise yourself with what’s there. Make a list of the things the guests will need to capture on their cameras and print out a copy for each team. If you are having the party at your local botanical garden, for instance, include a particular tree, a sculpture, a bird that’s a common resident, and so on. At your own home you might include a close-up shot of an ant, something purple, five round items of different colours or a funny face. You can also get the children to snap themselves making a human pyramid, for example. For safety sake: if you are in a public place, you’ll need an adult to dash round with each team. At your home you age 7 to 10 might want to stipulate no-go areas. You probably don’t want your wardrobe unpacked in search of that feather boa your son saw you wear to a fancy dress last year… go Divide the children into groups and send them off to find the things on the list and photograph them. Give prizes for the best photo, first to complete the assignment or funniest picture. If you’re at home you could show the children each other’s images by loading them all onto a memory stick and playing it through your music system on the TV.

backwards bonanza

age 8 to 10

(or should we say, Aznanob Sdrawkcab) ready You’ll need a few old rice bags for sack races (try your hardware store), sticky tape in a dispenser, as many sheets of wrapping paper as there are guests, and a small gift wrapped in tissue paper. get set Set out the party food on the tablecloth under the table. Have a music system with an appropriate CD at the ready. go Greet children with “goodbye”; start by eating the food under the table; sing happy birthday backwards – you can stick the words underneath the tabletop: “You to birthday happy, you to birthday happy,” and so on. Play the birthday child’s favourite party games backwards and reward the “losers” as the winners. Hop sackrace relays in reverse. Play pass the parcel, getting the children to each wrap the gift in a layer of paper when it’s their turn, the child left with the last sheet of wrapping paper gets to keep the gift. Play musical statues, but the children need to dance when the music is off and freeze when the music is on. Send them all home with a cheerful “hello”.

pretty pamper

age 8

ready You’ll need a few large plastic bowls, nail-polish remover, bubble bath, cotton wool, towels, nail files, foot cream and a variety of nailpolish colours. You’ll also need to enlist the help of a few moms (“beauty therapists”) and hire a DVD that the children will enjoy. get set Fill the baths with warm water and mix in some bubble bath. go Put on the movie and let the girls soak their feet as they watch. The beauty therapists can then dry off the guests’ feet, tidy up their nails with a file, apply foot cream and paint their nails in the to 13 colour of their choice.

music mania ready You’ll need a music system that can take a microphone, and a CD of the birthday child’s favourite songs (or consider hiring a karaoke machine). Come up with a list of song titles and write these on little slips of paper. You could also find someone to teach the partygoers some cool new hip-hop moves, for instance. get set Make sure the music system is working and set it up in the room where you are having the party. go Let the guests take turns singing along through the mike, the less outgoing can sing in pairs. Run a game of charades with the song titles you have prepared and get them to try out a few dance moves with the help of your guest hip-hop “star” or a current music video.


May 2010

age 8 to 13


party-planning check list the month before Choose the venue. Home or away? Indoors or out? Public venue (such as your neighbourhood park) or hired venue? Book and pay any necessary deposit. Set the date and time. Consider the activities you’re hoping to include and at what time of day these will work best. Draw up the guest list. Some suggest inviting one guest for each year of your child’s age (one little friend to a first birthday, two to a second birthday party, and so on). It can be overwhelming, especially for younger children, to have a house full of people all showering them with attention – and gifts! Remember: just because you’re an extrovert and love crowds, it doesn’t mean your child does. Decide on a theme. Of course you don’t have to have one of these, but themes do narrow things down, which can be helpful if you’re doing everything yourself. Older children will have stronger ideas… perhaps have a few suggestions up your sleeve and then present these at the same time as asking for their ideas. Send out invitations. Snail mail, hand delivery, email… you choose. Remember to include a finish time, whether siblings and parents are also invited, find out about allergies or diebetes, an RSVP date and anything the guests need to bring with them. Decide on the games or activities. Will you run these yourself or will you call in the professionals? Will you hire equipment or hire an entertainer? If you’re going it alone, you have a bit more time to gather ideas (see the first part of this feature for a start), ask friends what worked best for them and surf the web for ideas. Call in a few favours: perhaps your sister-in-law is a dab hand at face-painting?

two weeks before Order or plan the cake. The easiest DIY option for a summer birthday cake is to buy a couple of tubs of ice cream, like chocolate and vanilla. Let these melt a little, then throw a few chocolate chips into the one and some crushed meringue into the other. Layer the two in a spring-form cake tin or Pyrex dish, cover with clingfilm and freeze. (Tip: wrap a hot cloth around the dish to help loosen the cake.) Or you can get the children to make their own (see create a cupcake on page 25) on the day. Decide on decorations. A handful of balloons might be sufficient. Or perhaps you want to splash out at the party shop? It might seem too early to look at this, but if your child is set on Hannah Montana, you won’t want to screech into the store one hour before the party and end up having to leave with Barbie paraphernalia. Plan the menu. Will your food match your theme? Alien Juice, Monster Pies, Spider Cookies, anyone? Will you make it yourself, buy pre-prepared food from the supermarket or deli, or enlist the services of a caterer? Plan party packs. Do you want to send the guests home with something? Will this be a craft item they make at the party or a little bag of edible goodies? Add the contents to your shopping list.

one week before Plan the games and activities. Make a list (and suggested running order) and allocate responsibilities. Add the prizes and any props needed to your shopping list. Do the shopping. Compile your list from the menu. Buy all the non-perishables now, so you have less to do later. Make sure you have drinks (tea, coffee, wine and juice) and eats for any parents who’ll also be there. Don’t forget serviettes, candles, matches, as well as the decorations you need. Check catering supplies. Have you got sufficient crockery, cutlery, tables and chairs? There’s still time to borrow what you need from friends. Follow up on missing RSVPs. Prepare any food that can be made in advance. Or confirm drop-off or pickup times with your caterer.

the day before Get photo ready. Charge your camera; have a memory card in backup. Or, if you’re old-school, like I am, make sure you have enough film (believe me, it’s particularly hard to find on a Sunday afternoon). Check your first aid kit. Better over- than under-prepared. Bake or collect the birthday cake. Purchase any last-minute perishables. Assemble the party packs. The birthday child might like to help with these. Get cooking. Sort out any last-minute food and beverage bits and pieces.

party time Set up the party table, games and decorations. Older children can help by blowing up balloons and decorating the table. Put up a welcome sign. If your house is hard to find, tie a balloon on your gate to help direct people to your home. Enjoy!


May 2010



May 2010



May 2010



the ultimate party guide

ACCESSORIES AND SERVICES AR Jumping Castle Hire Castles follow standard, Barbie, Barney and 101 Dalmatians themes. Other services include hire of chocolate fountains; bubble, snow and candyfloss machines; children’s tables and chairs. Castles from R270 including delivery within Durban area, chocolate fountains from R150 and bubble machines from R150. Westville. Contact: 031 262 5640 or 083 777 8878 Babalicious Cake and Party Emporium Stocks dress-up costumes, party accessories, novelty toys, sweets, cakes, snacks, party packs and more. Umhlanga. Contact Janine: 031 561 7944 or Bake A Ton Sells baking ingredients in bulk, as well as novelty tins, ribbons, foils, chocolate moulds and more. They print edible icing sheets for cakes and hire out various shaped cake tins including popular TV character designs. Wholesale prices. Westville. Contact: 031 267 0155 Balloons Just 4 U Helium balloons, balloon-printing and party décor. Delivery service available. La Lucia. Contact: 031 572 3572, or visit Beautiful Day Specialises in photography and videography for children’s birthday parties and other events. Prices vary according to clients’ needs. All areas. Contact Danica: 074 181 8364, or visit Bubble Ball Children can play on water, without getting wet. This is great entertainment for all seasons. The balls and pools are made of durable materials and on-site supervision is provided. Contact Lauren: 073 222


May 2010

3718, or visit Bunny Foo Foo Party Packs Junkfree party packs include dried fruit, stationery and goodies for boys and girls. Options include art and craft kits and cosmetic pouches. From R23. Contact Ishana: 082 565 9426 or Charisma Hire Rents out Wimbledon chairs, upmarket cutlery, glassware, crockery, platters and table settings. Berea. Contact Francie: 031 201 2821 or Chelsea Flowers Online florist provides flower arrangements, centrepieces and gift hampers for parties. All delivered locally. Contact Joan: 031 563 8420, 083 284 8771, or visit Crazy Concepts Imports and distributes high-quality playground equipment, ball ponds, rock-climbing walls, rides, jumping castles and electric trains. Delivery and installation countrywide. Contact Lizelle: 082 826 1786, or visit Floating Balloon Party Shop Sells themed party accessories. Southgate Business Park, Umbogintwini. Contact Odette: 031 914 0125 Flower Fusion Offers a range of floral designs and gifts. Contact Robyn: 031 764 2801 or Funcastles Specialises in jumping castles, three-in-one jumpers, water slides, mini tables and chairs, and spitbraai hire. Contact: 083 555 1689 or Gary’s 4 Wheelers Entertainment Jumping castles, water slides, ball pond and carousel swing available for hire. Delivery to all areas. Contact Gary or Sherry: 031 464 6572 or 082 290 0846

Goodie Two Shoes Offers goodie boxes for 1- to 10-year-olds containing activity-related stickers, crayons, puzzles, beads, clay fun and toys. Delivery countrywide. From R30. Contact Memre: 082 466 3182, or visit It’s A Party This one-stop party shop supplies helium balloons, themed party décor, novelty cakes, party entertainment, party sweet packs, novelty sweets and gifts plus party platters. Ballito. Contact Robyn: 032 946 3910, 073 801 5247 or It’s Mine Offers a wide range of personalised labels that are microwave and dishwasher safe. Also magnetic invitations, party-pack stickers, personalised party-pack tattoos and wrapping paper. Contact: 073 605 0515 or visit Itz’aparty A one-stop online party supply and party favours store with more than 2 000 party items to choose from. Countrywide delivery. Contact: 012 751 0395, or visit Jukebox Hire Offers a disco package for children under 16 years. Includes jukebox, disco lights and smoke machine. Contact Bob: 031 811 2657 or Just Labels Specialises in customised self-adhesive gift labels. Contact: 031 266 1738, or visit Kiddies’ Jumping Castles A wide variety of jumping castles, candyfloss and popcorn machines plus go-karts. Contact: 031 762 1866 or Kids Labels International Supplies a wide variety of personalised labels for children. Make gift-giving extra special with personalised wrapping

paper and gift stickers. Orders posted countrywide and internationally. Contact: 021 794 6637, or visit Kidz Party Shop and Buttercup Bakery From cakes and cupcakes to party packs and hiring of tables and chairs, centrepieces and cupcake stands. Also offers a wide range of themed party accessories. Contact: 031 572 5509, 083 607 2295, amanda@ or leanne@buttercupbakery. or visit and Kitty Catz Party Hire Jumping castles, water slides, clowns, face painters, themed décor, party packs and balloon sculpting. Contact Kitty: 076 531 4005 or Labels Inc A selection of invitations, gift labels, vinyl labels and notepads. Countrywide delivery. Contact: 082 556 4232, or visit Little Occasions Children’s Designer Partyware Offers a collection of partyware including invitations, paper cups, plates, napkins, balloons, colourful greeting cards, wrapping paper, gift bags, tissue paper and gift tags. An array of party products can be viewed and ordered online. Delivery to your door, countrywide. Contact: 011 791 7436, 083 415 6162, or visit Magda’s Jumping Castles A wide variety of jumping castles for ages one to 12, including ball ponds and cubes, splash slides, obstacle courses, spaceships and an inflated tunnel. From R310–R490, includes delivery, setup and collection. Contact: 031 767 1960, 083 378 9751, or visit durban’s


Having a party? Here’s who to call. Compiled by tracy ellis

Money Box Party Packs Novel, affordable party packs, which double as gifts for party guests to take home. Four ranges available, including a DIY option that provides an arts and crafts activity for children to do at the party. The latest designs include B.T. (based on the Ben 10 design) and B.Trio (based on the Bakugan design). From R8. Agents countrywide. Contact: 082 422 7872 or visit My Pink Panda Kids’ Parties Specialises in party-in-a-box themed accessories, gazebo, children’s table and chair hire, Delicious cakes and cupcakes. Services Durban and surrounds. Contact: Olivia 078 800 7056 or Nicole 074 494 3213 or visit Nox Designs Specialises in personalised labels, including those for birthday and party-packs. Posted countrywide. From R35. Contact Nicky: 082 496 2930, or visit noxdesigns. Parties4Africa Online shopping site offers a wide range of party products. Over 50 children’s themes to choose from, including plates, cups, serviettes, hats, party blowers, loot bags, tablecloths and invitations. Countrywide. Contact: Cheryl 083 635 5353 or Penny 084 406 6313 or 035 772 6592, or visit Parties 4 U Stockists of helium balloons, party décor and themed party accessories. Jumping castle hire. Pick n Pay Centre, Bluff. Contact: 031 467 5803 Party Packs and Piñatas Party packs made to order from R20 each. Empty piñatas, R170, or filled with 150 chewy wrapped sweets and plastic trinkets, R215, excluding postage. Contact Kim: 087 805 9977, 082 683 5766, info@ or visit Party Themes Classic Supplies party accessories including plates, cups, serviettes, baking supplies, costumes, décor and gift wrap. Springfield Park. Contact: 031 577 0202 Party Zone Hire Stocks more than 50 jumping castles, a train on tracks, mechanical bull, swings and merry-gorounds. Durban, Ballito and Hillcrest. Contact Hassim: 083 685 5577 or visit Perfect Parties Offers novelty cakes, jumping castle, chocolate fountains, slush-puppy machines and all catering for adults and children’s parties. Amanzimtoti. Contact Caroline: 076 686 4491 or Piñata Africa Offers custom-made piñatas in any shape or size to suit your theme. Fill them with sweets, suspend them from a string and hit them with a stick to release their contents. Posted throughout South Africa. From R220. Sweets extra. Contact Marianne: 082 457 2276, mgwyther@ or visit durban’s

Pixies Castles A range of good quality castles for hire; something to suit everyone’s budget. From R300, excluding delivery. Contact: 083 251 9754, or visit Puzzle Worx Transform your favourite photo into a jigsaw puzzle. Make outof-the-ordinary invitations or a special gift for your child or grandparent. From R18,50 (nine-piece puzzle) to R120 (A3/180-piece puzzle). A range of educational puzzles is also available. Agents for Brag Bags. Contact Jody: 083 275 6567 or visit Sandy’s Jumping Castles Delivers jumping castles to the Upper Highway area. Super slides and combos, Barney, Spider-Man and Superman themes are available. Contact: 031 765 5749, 083 331 9497 or sandysjumpingc@ Sky Toys A wholesale balloon company with a wide variety of balloons – from plain and printed to novelty and foil, as well as helium balloons and trendy inflatables. All available online. Deliveries countrywide. Contact: 011 837 3924, 083 377 3786, or visit Stay Stuck Personalise your gifts with a gift dot or gift block label. Deliveries countrywide. Gift dots R55 for 22 and gift blocks R45 for 18. Contact Darren: 082 652 0775, or visit Stick With Us! Personalised party invites, party-box stickers, thank-you cards, gift stickers, banners and posters. Also available are printed clothing labels, school stationery, lunch-box and shoe labels. Contact Mandy: 082 377 0513 or The Crazy Store A discount store for all you would need for your child’s party. Contact: 021 505 5500 or visit The Ink Spot Helium and foil balloons, party bags, stickers, face paints, gifts, colouring sets, glow-in-the-dark stickers and birthday cards. Durban North. Contact: 031 563 7199 or theinkspot@ The Plated Lizard Creates unique birthday baskets that make lovely gifts or upmarket party packs. Delivery to your door. From R100. Contact Tandi: 031 765 5677, 082 874 1190 or The Titanic Jumping Castle Shaped like a boat and ideal for pirate parties, the castle includes a climbing rope, slide and large jumping area. Contact Candice: 031 573 2210 or 082 839 2218 The Toys R Us Kids Party Bus A London-style double-decker bus with a soft interior play facility with slides, ball pools, mazes, a climbing frame and toys. Available in a 50km radius of The Pavilion, Westville. Ideal for 3- to

8-year-olds. R1 500, includes jumping castle, face painter and party coordinator. Contact Alex: 082 689 7642, or visit Toddlers Warehouse Sells party-pack toys at wholesale prices. Wooden pens, pencils, spinning tops, clown whistles, bug boxes, notebooks, musical instruments, mini puzzles, games and more. They have toys for boys, girls and babies. Shipping countrywide. Contact Tania: 011 979 1676, 072 398 8053, or visit Tony Miller Promotions Provides all types of children’s entertainment including clowns, magicians, jugglers, and more. Also hires out jumping castles, popcorn and candyfloss machines, hovercraft, swings, go-karts and quad bikes. Sells balloons, badges and medals. Glenwood. Contact Tony or Lalitha: 031 205 2074 or visit Visualize This DVD and photography for parties. From R450, includes film and photographs (100+) and a DVD slideshow with music of your choice. For R200 extra you get your digital negatives on a CD. Contact: Eugene 082 611 0605 or Jackie 083 661 1516 An online shop offering tableware, décor, themed plates, cups, hats, party blowers and more. Contact Paul: 082 461 3216, or visit

ANIMAL PARTIES Crafty Duck Village Offers an amazing farmyard, a snake and reptile park, a wildlife sanctuary, a fun train, horse rides, a craft shop, restaurant and relaxation spa. The German deli stocks artworks and freshly baked deli goodies. Contact: 033 390 1334/6, or visit Crocodile Creek A working crocodile farm with snakes, lizards, monkeys and more. Party area with playground. Paintball for older children, special surprises along the bush trail for party groups, and the chance to touch a live croc or snake. Food and party packs to suit your requirements. Contact: 082 920 0730, 084 507 7148 or Croctilians Restaurant Package includes guided tour through crocodile and snake park. The play area has a jungle gym, swings and slides. Children are given balloons, sweets, cool drinks, a toy and a platter of hot dogs, chicken nuggets, fish fingers and hot chips, followed by ice-cream cones. R80 per child, minimum 10 children. Add a birthday cake with candles for R5 extra

per child. Entrance fee to Crocodile Park for adults R35. Valley of a Thousand Hills. Contact Pat or Lauren: 031 777 1119 or 082 700 3602 Dude Ranch Offers tailor-made parties to suit every budget. They will organise the whole party for you or hire out their party deck. From R35 per child, including entrance to the petting farm and supervised play area, a pony or tractor ride, meal and juice. Contact: 084 250 6591, 084 313 0444, 032 484 8568 or Flag Animal Farm Parties take place in one of five different designated party areas. The birthday child’s name appears on the dairy wall during the daily milking at noon or 3pm. Children can milk the cow and each child under 30kg gets a free pony ride. Tables, tablecloths and chairs provided. You can take your own food. R25 per person. Contact: 032 947 2018, 032 947 2020, or visit Red Rooster Party venue and animal farm offers a marquee, pony rides and a jumping castle as well as catering packages. Animals roam freely through the farm. Take your own décor. Shongweni. Contact: 082 337 7218 or visit

ART AND CRAFTS PARTIES Buddy Bear Offers bearbuilding parties in-store at 21 Henwood Rd, Pinetown, or at a venue of your choice. Children can choose from a wide range of bears or animals, which they fill with stuffing, add a heart and voice box and make a wish. A birth certificate is issued, then bears can be dressed. From R69 for a bear or animal. Contact Leanne: 031 702 1372, or visit Crafting Kids Specialises in craft parties with activities to fit your theme. All crafting tools are supplied and an assistant helps children to complete their craft, which they can take home. Crafts kits also available. Durban North, La Lucia and Umhlanga. Surrounding areas on request. Contact Debbie: 082 579 0077, or visit Delightful Crafts Offers crafts parties for children. 184 Watsonia Rd, Bluff. Contact: 031 466 6469 or 084 240 5214 Just Imagine Mosaics Offers mosaic parties at your home or a venue of your choice. All age-appropriate materials and tools needed are supplied. Tables and water supply not provided. For ages 5 and older. Contact: Sheila 083 782 7810 or Zelda 082 900 3565 or May 2010


Sand Art Parties A fun activity suitable for children aged 5 and older. R500 includes a table, bottles of coloured sand and 25 cards, delivered and collected; additional cards R10 each. For parties fewer than 10 children, home kits are available. Contact: 083 383 7102, or visit Toby Tower A range of educational stickers, DIY activities and products for parents. Options includes sticker albums, sticker pictures, 3D pop art, reward charts, height measurers, colour-in puzzles, gel art, sand art, scratch art and much more. Contact: 0800 22 04 88, or visit Yours Forever Craft Studio Party Venue Art and crafts, mosaics, decoupage, candle-making, ceramic painting and scrapbooking parties. Maximum 10 children. Hillcrest. Contact Katherine: 031 765 6769 or 083 776 3235

CAKES AND CATERING Birthday in a Box Provides themed birthday solutions, including everything from cakes to partyware from as little as R700. Contact Zolita: 082 374 6399 or zolita@ Cake Inc Specialises in cakes with a difference. The chef will bake and customise the cake of your choice. Durban North. Contact Yolande: 082 667 4062, yolandeopperman@ or visit Cakes by Cleo Novelty birthday cakes. Enquire about their sculpted cakes and figures. Hilton, Pietermaritzburg and Durban. From R450. Contact: 082 964 6779, or visit Carol’s Home Industries Offers novelty and picture cakes for birthday parties personalised with your child’s name and age. Other catering includes


May 2010

milk tarts, lemon meringue pies and carrot cakes. From R50–R210. Cupcakes R3,50 each. Glenwood Village Centre, 397 Che Guevara Rd. Contact: 031 202 3039, or visit Centrepiece Hire A catering service for all occasions, specialising in Victorian afternoon teas – complete with vintage china, decadent food, décor and styling. Contact: 031 312 3042, 084 819 5694 or CherryBakes Creates personalised, iced condensed-milk biscuits in all shapes and sizes, perfect for party favours and treats. R7 per biscuit. Upper Highway area. Contact Melissa: 083 602 7487, or visit Claire’s Kitchen Specialises in children’s birthday parties, baby showers and kitchen teas. Contact: 082 339 9886 or Cupcake Indulgence Makes cupcakes for birthday parties, bridal showers, high teas, baby showers and weddings. Able to match your theme or colour scheme. Greater Durban. Contact Michelle: 083 256 3662 or visit Decadent Brownies Bakes fresh white chocolate brownies for parties. R65 per dozen. Contact Sue: 082 417 6376, or visit Delite Foods Specialises in tasty, sugar-free, low-fat jellies, biscuits and chocolate drinks that are perfect for hyperactive children. Enquire about their diabetics range. Visit their new online store to order. Purchases will be shipped directly to you, nationwide. Contact Fran: 021 702 0721/2, or visit Fillers! Makes crudité, sandwich and hot snack platters which feed 8–10 people. From R180. Order by 9am on the day you need them. Umhlanga. Contact Jeannie: 031 566 5729, 072 347 6217, jeannie@ or visit

Home Treats Provides a wide selection of cakes for office functions, school birthdays, birthday parties and tea parties. Includes oven pans and novelty, picture and photo cakes plus a variety of sweet and savoury platters. Contact Gail: 031 312 6908 House of Treats Bakes various cakes including image cakes from R250. Glen Anil. Contact: 031 569 5879 or sales@ Huberto’s All natural ice-cream cakes. Choose from a variety of themes. Novelty cakes from R195. Hillcrest. Contact: 031 766 2595 or visit Image Cakes Edible images that can be put onto virtually any cake topping. Use your child’s favourite animated character or a photo, and they will add your personalised text. Picture can be supplied alone or cakes can be included. Great for theme parties. Image R70; 12 large cupcake images R50; 20 medium cupcake images R50; cake R70; cake with image and piping R150. Contact Crystal: 031 205 9276 or crystal@ Indulgent Delights Cupcakes, brownies, gingerbread biscuits, mini pavlovas, truffles and more baked to order. Specialists in school birthday rings. Delivery available. Cupcakes R5 each with butter icing and glitter or R6 with decorations. Contact Hannah: 082 682 9695 or Juicy Lucy Offers a platter menu perfect for parties. Options include gourmet sandwiches, mini cheese grillers, dips, mini wraps and veggie sticks. Platters are ready within two hours of order. To find a store near you visit Kauai Healthy food for children’s parties. Wraps, sandwiches, canapés, fruit smoothies, fresh fruit juices and more. Contact Nuraan at head office: 021 552 0222 or visit Party Packs and Snacks Party boxes, platters for children aged 1 and older, various sweet items, tarts

and cakes made to order. Delivery arranged. Platters from R140 to R250. Contact Michelle: 083 709 1843 or Paula’s Kitchen Specialises in cakes for occasions, cupcakes and unique 3D cakes. Made to order. South Coast, Ballito and Hillcrest triangle. From R325. Contact: Paula 078 567 2963 or Gavin 084 222 5560, 031 708 2040, or visit Pick n Pay The Pick n Pay Entertaining Range is elegantly presented in disposable food trays or beautiful baskets. Eighteen various party platters are available in-store and offer a choice of hot and cold snacks. Platters are sold cold on oven safe trays with simple re-heating instructions. Theme cakes are also available for children’s parties. Pop into your local store to browse the party-platter catalogue and place your order at the deli before 10am and at least two days in advance. Contact your local store or visit Pizza Boyz Makes huge pizzas that feed up to 20 children and are perfect for parties. Contact: Umhlanga 031 566 5428 or Durban North 031 564 2732 The Fudge Lady Sells homemade sweets, candyfloss, toffee apples, fudge and party packs. Delivery can be arranged. Contact Angus or Julie: 031 309 1608 or thefudgelady@ The Party Hat! From personalised invitations to themed party packs, cakes, cupcakes and piñatas. Contact Lorraine: 084 832 0293, or visit Vanille Café Offers light, café-style meals and Lucy’s Cake Shop bakes a variety of patisserie items daily, including cakes, biscuits and cupcakes, perfect for parties and goodie bags. From R9. They also host high teas, tea parties and cupcake parties at their venue for ages 8 years and older. Contact: 031 717 2780


COOKING PARTIES Tots n Pots Offers baking parties. Choose from a menu of themes and recipes. Various packages available, including party packs, hats, aprons, ingredients, crafts and all equipment for baking. Hirsch’s Umhlanga, Suburban Play Umhlali and Amanzimtoti. Contact Angie: 083 400 1288 or visit

EDUCATIONAL PARTIES KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board An audiovisual presentation and shark dissection. You may set up a food table in the courtyard by prior arrangement. R10 per child, minimum 15 children. Contact Precious or Ashira: 031 566 0435 Old Mutual MTN Sciencentre Let your child party with their friends at the Old Mutual MTN Sciencentre, Gateway. Over 200 exhibits, science activities and more. Party packs, meals and entertainment can be arranged. Contact: 031 566 8040 or bookings@ Reptile Magic Offers an interactive educational experience where children can touch and feel lizards, turtles and non-venomous snakes. Reptiles are brought to your home. Contact Craig: 083 269 6307 or snakeshow1@ The Menagerie Children are given an educational talk about animals and how to care for them, and will be able to touch and hold them. The animals include birds of prey, mammals and reptiles. From R500. Contact Fiona: 072 215 6368 Treasure Beach Environmental Centre Spend your party exploring the rocky shore with a guide, learning about ecosystems and conservation. Boma area with braai facilities provided. Adults R35, children R20. Contact Tatum or Sithembile: 031 467 8507 or tbeachedu@


ENTERTAINERS Adrian Smith the Magician Offers an “unforgettable” birthday function. R825 for 40 minutes; R975 for 60 minutes. Contact Adrian: 083 450 4024, magic@themagician. or visit Arthur Reed Professional Magician Arthur will delight children with his 45-minute display of professional magic. For ages 3 years and older. Costs vary according to area. Contact Arthur: 031 702 0076 or visit Atom Ant Science Fun Parties Offers age-appropriate interactive activities and demonstrations. Soon launching in Durban. Contact Ann: 082 570 5796 Blue Flame Events and Branding Specialists Children’s entertainment, magicians, clowns, jumping castles, face painters and stilt walkers. Contact Willie: 021 856 2774, 072 599 2288, info@ or visit Cherry the Magical Clown Juggling, puppets, balloon-sculpting and facepainting. Lots of audience participation plus magician and fairy show. From R450–R650. Contact Adi: 031 201 2515, 083 725 0925, or visit Clowns4joy! Ideal for parties, promotions and fun days. Facepainting, balloon-modelling, children’s clubs, party games and fun. Jumping castles, chocolate fountain and bubble machine available. New outdoor packages, scrapbooking, beading, art and little girls’ parties. Children’s tables, chair and décor available too. Contact: 0861 11 40 95 Clowns R Us Offers face-painting, balloon-sculpting, games and activities. From R380. Contact Esther: 031 765 1153, 082 491 2583 or Double Delicious Entertainment Entertainment for every event: comedians, live music, acrobats, clowns, karaoke, jumping castles and

more. Contact Gaylene: 084 222 6161, or visit Durban Face Painting Specialises in children’s parties and corporate events. Contact Delene: 084 455 1101 or visit Foam Party Fun Mobile foam parties for children aged 2 years and older. Enquire about their teenage disco foam parties with sound and lighting. Contact Dudley: 072 739 7978 or visit Gum Gum the Clown Specialises in humorous entertainment. Amazing puppets, wonderful stories, mystifying illusions, games and balloon shaping. Various packages to choose from. Price on request. Contact Adrian: 083 388 8940 or visit Jan Jan the Clown Entertains children as a clown or as a fairy godmother with face-painting and games. Durban North to Ballito. Contact Janice: 082 896 8457 or Jewels the Clown Provides an entertaining show and face-painting for children. From R700–R1 200. Contact: 031 461 1006, 084 812 4996 or Monkeynastix Will entertain your children for just over an hour with their own equipment, aerobic activities and music. All areas. Contact Kevin: 082 770 7507 or visit On the Ball Productions Brings the circus to your child’s birthday party. Other guests include a superhero, pirate, fairy princess or Prince Charming. An interactive magical circus variety show includes juggling, unicycling, magic and comedy. Face-painting, balloontwisting, games and a jumping castle are also available. Contact: 074 113 2278, or visit Party Station Specialises in mobile party entertainment. They have a trailer with four TVs and games running simultaneously. Singstar, karaoke and microphone included. Contact: Natalie 072 348 9907 or Peter 084 457 7659

Penguin Parties Organises party entertainment from pamper parties to dancing and games. Themes include Hannah Montana, High School Musical, Mamma Mia!, Camp Out or Camp Rock plus many more. From R800 for 30 children. Photographer optional. Contact: 082 320 7526 or Puppet World Interactive puppet shows with music, lighting and puppet characters. Themes include animal stories, fairy-tales and their popular World Cup show. Contact Heather: 031 208 8202 or 082 808 0057 Rico the Clown Has over 20 years’ experience and will entertain your children’s friends with intelligent humour, magic, juggling, face-painting, balloonshaping, games and more. Contact Rico: 031 464 4718 or 082 459 1797 Simon’s Snake Shows A 45-minute or hour-long snake and reptile show at a venue of your choice. Children love having their photo taken with the giant pythons. Educational and entertaining. From R650. Contact Simon or Nadine: 078 382 7819 or 078 391 6721 The Hairy Fairy Hair-styling parties are a great idea for girls. Various themes include Bratz, princess, Hannah Montana and more. The birthday girl receives a free gift bag with hair accessories. From R50 per child, minimum 10 children. Contact Adri: 073 634 3572 or adrithehairyfairy@ The Incredible Dog Show Provides entertainment for children’s parties, school visits and events. Although they are Cape Town-based, they operate countrywide. Contact Lloyd: 084 500 0415, or visit Top Gear Promotions Provides any kind of children’s entertainment. Options include sound, carousel swings, train rides, games and more. All areas. Contact: 031 776 3028, 082 930 0612 or topgearpromotions@

May 2010


Trixie A family show involving comedy, magic, balloon-twisting, face-painting and origami. Contact: 031 209 5512 or 082 961 1634 Wow Balls Perfect for pool parties. Walk on water, jump, flip, roll, crawl or just float in one of these transparent balls. Contact: 071 461 4833, or visit Wrap It Up Entertainment Offers age-specific party entertainment for children aged between 5 and 13. All the materials provided to keep little ones entertained with make-up, games, dancing, prizes, activities and more. Durban Central to North Coast. Contact Shona: 076 550 4484

FANCY DRESS HIRE Carnival and Backstage Fancy-dress costumes for sale and made to order. Fairy dresses, pirate and cowboy outfits and more. Berea. Contact: 031 202 3852 Fantasia Costume and Prop Hire Hiring of dress-up costumes, props, linen and draping for all themes and ages. Sells wigs, masks, moustaches, party favours and accessories. Costume hire from R15 to R280. Contact Nadia: 031 762 1871, or visit Imagination Costume Hire Stocks a variety of themed costumes for children and adults. All ages, all sizes. Che Guevara Rd, Glenwood. Contact Lesley: 031 202 9999

INDOOR PARTIES Adventure Golf Parties include invitations, a party area, slush puppies, chips, sweets and two games of mini-golf. R450 for 10 children; R40 per extra child. Pavilion Shopping Centre. Contact: 031 265 1570 Dodgems Formula Racing Dodgems racing from R15 per ride; two children per car. Discounted rates for weekday parties and weekend mornings out of season. Gateway. Contact Robyn: 082 334 4690 Funland Entertainment Centre Tenpin bowling, video games, dodgem rides and more. Amanzimtoti. Contact: 031 903 1068 Highway Action Sports Arena Action cricket, netball, soccer and dodgeball parties. R900 for 16 children, includes two-hour venue hire, an umpire and equipment. Optional catering: sweets, snacks, cake, juice, a choice of hotdogs, chicken nuggets or sausage rolls and tea/coffee for the adults. R1 250 for up to 20 children. Additional children, R40 each. Contact: 031 705 6046, liora@ or visit IMAX A photo of the birthday child is projected onto a five-storey-high IMAX screen. They also offer one free hour in


May 2010

the upper lobby for a party. R22 per IMAX documentary; R35 per Hollywood feature film; R15 for a small popcorn and soft drink. Contact: 031 566 4417, melanie. or visit It’s Thairs This children’s hair salon offers pretty pamper parties for girls of 4 years and older. Davallen Centre. Contact: 031 562 8462, 031 562 9534 or itsthairs@ Little Divas Offers makeover parties for girls from 5 years to teenagers. They come to your venue and transform it into a spa where the girls are treated to facials, relaxing massages, manicures and pedicures. Optional personalised dressing gowns available as gifts. Catering also available. From R150– R250, minimum nine guests. Contact Roberta: 083 374 7924 or roberta. Mr Funtubbles Fabulous Family Funfair This indoor funfair features seven imported rides including a family swinger and rocking tug. Children’s birthday parties include two-hour use of the party room and a card loaded with R150 in ride credits per child. The party package excludes the Tombola section and XD theatre. R75 per child. Contact: 031 584 6645 or The Chicken Shack Café Choose between a pizza party or fairy party for R55 per child, includes food and drink or a self-catering party for R400 plus R10 per child. Optional catering for adults. 41 Old Mission Rd, Grosvenor. Contact: 031 467 9461, or visit The Ice Rink Children can enjoy an ice-skating party for R65, including a burger or hot dog, chips, cold drink and a two-hour skating session. Contact: 031 332 4597 or visit Treehouse Parties and Events Décor, invitations, face-painting, a jumping castle, train rides, games, snacks, sweets and juice for R75 per child. Birthday cake and party packs for an extra R25 per child. Gateway. Contact: 082 926 1035 or

INDOOR AND OUTDOOR PARTIES @TAP Offers a shady grassed playground, with slides, water troughs, jungle gyms and a Wendy house. Bring your own party food or use their catering service. R400 venue hire, includes chairs and tables. Friday and Saturday, 2pm–4pm. Durban North. Contact: 082 377 9739 or 031 563 0882 Absolute Parties Provides a range of services including mobile DJs, discos, lighting, décor and photography. Contact: Stanton 078 244 7012 or Devon 076 720 4303, stanton.ramasami@ or absoluteparties2@ durban’s

Action Kids Offers two-hour parties for 7- to 15-year-olds. The package includes a choice of two sports (from cricket, soccer and netball), juice, chips and chocolate, and an umpire for the game. Cost: R900 for 16 children, R40 per child thereafter. Use of braai and bar facilities and catering options available. Glen Anil. Contact: 031 569 2173 or visit Animal Farmyard Offers various packages, which include use of party area with table, tablecloths and chairs under a thatched boma or on the deck, jungle gym, swings and slides as well as a milking demonstration, a packet of animal feed and one pony or tractor ride per child. Children can also learn to milk the cow. Catering for children and adults available. 3 Lello Rd, Botha’s Hill (1km after Kearsney College). Packages from R15 per child and R10 per adult. Contact Jenny: 031 765 2240, 082 979 6030 or visit Build-A-Bear Workshop’s Build-AParty Offers an entertaining and fun experience for any child aged 3 and older. Each party has its own bear builder associate to get the party started. From R89. Contact: 08611 BEARS (23277) or visit Crocodilian Restaurant at Crocworld Package includes balloons, cold drinks, children’s meal and ice cream. From R39 per child. Optional entrance fee to Crocworld Park, R25 per child and R40 per adult. You can bring your own cake and sweets. Scottburgh. Contact: 039 976 0083 Dilly the Clown Will delight your children with magic, balloon animals, facepainting, juggling, audience participation and parachute games. Contact Heather: 031 208 2986, 082 574 3230 or Funhouse Provides an exclusive range of fun interactive carnival games of chance and skill. Easy to play, completely safe and suitable for all ages. Wacky Maze and Crazy Mirrors coming soon. All entertainment is supplied, set up and run by experienced staff. R960 for 16 players; R45 per player thereafter. Includes set-up and facilitation of games for up to 2½ hours. Contact: 083 306 6385 or Golden Hours Party Venue A covered party hut with two tables and 30 chairs. There’s also a large adventure playground with jungle gyms and swings, parking and clean ablutions. R300 for 30 adults and 30 children for three hours; R5 per extra person thereafter. Pony hire, tractor and quad-bike rides and ChooChoo train hire, optional extra. Durban North. Contact Lyn: 083 262 3693 or 031 201 3432 (a/h) Illovo Kids Provides a venue, catering and décor for your child’s party including jumping castle, slides, swings and climbing frames, balloons and dressed durban’s

tables. From R450. Illovo Beach. Contact Geraldine: 072 042 2747 or geraldine2@ Jack and Jill Children’s Parties Provides everything you need at their venue to make your party a success including tables, chairs, party packs, snacks, balloons and more. Swimming pool, playground, animal farm, jumping castle, restaurant, sports bar and hairdressing salon available. R100 per child. Contact Melody: 032 525 4924, 084 376 3890 or JDS Gift Boxes Made according to your theme and used as gift boxes, decorative bowls, serviette holders or balloon weights. R15 each for orders over 30. Contact Sonja: 082 892 7852 or Kiddy Katz Party Venue Includes an outdoor and indoor play area. Venue hire at R250 per hour includes use of the house, garden, play area, pool and braai facilities. R35 per child, includes full party set-up, décor and accessories; R22 per child for full party catering and R20 per party pack. Contact Tammy: 031 201 0062 or 076 816 5020 Mini Town Children can run after the electric train, marvel at the ships passing under the railway bridge and visit the miniature city. Various party areas with table and chairs to set up your party food and drinks. Braai stand, refrigerators and power supply available. Venue R200; R12 per adult; R10 per child. Jumping castle R200. Contact Brian: 031 337 7892 Playworks Teambuilding and Party Games Offers themed party games for children and teens including Survivor games, The Amazing Race, Mafia Murder Mystery, National Treasure, pirates, fairies, dance and much more. Contact Linda: 031 466 4488, 079 502 0777, or visit Polly Parrot Party Venue This party spot at the 1000 Hills Bird Park offers venue, entertainment and catering for children and parents (optional). R85 includes entry to the bird park, a party pack with juice, sweets, chips, hot dog, cupcakes and a decorated venue. Contact Christine: 072 927 8242, or visit Spur Steak Ranches A safe venue for children’s parties. Includes a selected children’s meal, soda, ice cream and a party cup filled with sweets for R39,95. Invitations are available plus balloons, headdresses and play canyons. Contact: Silver Spear (uShaka Marine World) 031 337 7601, Apache River (Durban North) 031 564 3368, Augusta (Gateway) 031 566 5095, Daytona (Suncoast) 031 332 4032, Omaha (Ballito) 032 946 3711 or Miami (Umhlanga Rocks) 031 561 1370 or visit Tehilah Café A venue with a park, animals, a jumping castle, trampolines, a coffee shop and more. Malvern. Contact: 083 269 4246 or May 2010


Tekweni Puppet Plays Offers indoor and outdoor hand-puppet shows. Enquire about their new play: Pinocchio and the Elephant Child. For ages 3–12. From R550, excluding petrol if outside central Durban area. Face-painting R100. Contact Pamela: 031 261 2370, 082 403 1707 or The Enchanted Castle Parties A range of fairy-tale characters including Cinderella, Spider-Man, Buzz Lightyear, Snow White and more will entertain your children with themed craft activities and party games at a venue of your choice. Packages from R750. Contact: 082 415 2842, or visit The Toybox A venue with add-on catering and entertainment services. Durban North. Contact Julie: 031 573 1624, 082 555 2161 or Wave House Fun party packages to choose from in a safe environment with qualified instructors on hand to assist. Reserved party areas. Learn to surf on the Flowriders, R550 maximum 12 children per one-hour session; slide on the four awesome supertubes, R45 each for three hours; climb the highest indoor climbing rock in the world, R50 each for two hours; or skate the Tony Hawk skate park, R20. Contact Kim: 031 584 9400, kim.perry@ or visit Wimpy The Crescent Offers an undercover party venue with a play area. R37,95, includes a meal, drink, toy and party pack. Colouring-in sheets, crayons and balloons are supplied at no extra cost. The Crescent Shopping Centre. Contact Princess or Sharon: 031 566 5035 or visit

MUSIC PARTIES Kids Just Love To Dance Children’s disco or dancing parties include lights, mirror ball, games, music and a microphone. R900, plus travel if not in the Durban North/La Lucia area. Contact Carol: 072 135 8784 or cazzied@


May 2010

OUTDOOR PARTIES Big Occasions for Little People Themed parties for boys and girls of all ages, including décor, catering, gift bags, birthday cakes, entertainment and photographers. Umhlanga, Durban North, Berea and Westville. Contact: 031 818 2016, 083 656 2599 or Bizzy Lizzy Tea Garden Has a safe grassed area, complete with jungle gym and swings and is ideal for birthday parties. Also pony rides, a jumping castle, party packs, balloons, sweets and chips. Tea, coffee and platters available for adults. Botha’s Hill. Contact Debbie: 031 777 1006 or Boot Camp SA Offers age-appropriate action-packed parties, such as the Commando Party for children from age 5, Sniper Party from age 7, Ranger Party from age 9 and Paintball Party from age 10. Tables and seating provided. Catering services for children and adults are available. On-site braai facility may be used free of charge. From R1 500. Giba Gorge Valley, Westmead. Contact: 031 701 7282, or visit Busyballers Parties At your home, the beach, a sports field or your local sports club. Entertainment includes various sports, games, obstacle courses, treasure hunts, mini Olympics, pool games and more. Adventure jumping castle for hire. For ages 3–10. Contact Lisa: 083 236 0059 or Collisheen and Holla Café Children can enjoy the space in the extensive 100-year-old garden with cycling track, jungle gym and trampoline. Catering available. Contact: 032 947 1465, bnb@collisheen. or visit Clamber Club Offers fun obstacle course parties for children. They come to your home or chosen venue with equipment to clamber and climb on and entertainers to keep

1- to 9-year-olds entertained for 90 minutes. Contact Kaylee: 082 556 6622, Duck and Deck Animal Farm and Tea Garden A venue for children to interact with farm animals and enjoy pony rides. Designated party areas and catering for the adults in the tea garden. Assagay. Contact: 031 768 1029, or visit Durban Society Model Engineers Miniature steam-train rides, museum, playground and party area with setup included, as well as use of kitchen facilities. R400 for 15 children; R10 per extra child. Durban North. Contact: 082 577 2067 or Giba Gorge Mountain Bike Park Great venue for children’s parties. The party area has tables and 10 chairs. Catering optional. R895 for 20 children and 20 adult entry vouchers. Includes a ride to the waterfall with two guides, a CD of party photos and a gift pack for the birthday child. Weekends: 9am, 11am, 1pm and 3pm. Contact Lisa: 031 769 1527, or visit Gorgeous Girl Charters A party on the dam. Learn to waterski and have fun on the ski tube. R2 000 includes four-hour boat hire and skipper. Contact Peter: 083 679 1273 Greenglade A large venue with childfriendly playground. Table and chairs available. Catering by arrangement. R400 for two hours, includes tea and coffee. Westville. Contact: 031 266 2503 or Happi Days Offers a party in a garden setting with supervised playground and fantasy houses. Options include everything from venue hire to complete party planning and catering. Hybrid Living, Salt Rock/Umhlali area. Contact Kurt: 082 412 9905, or visit Hip Hip Hooray Happy Birthday Rents out children’s party equipment suitable for 1- to 6-year-olds. Including jumping castles, ball ponds, obstacle courses,

trampolines, soccer equipment and more. From R280. Delivery available. Contact Kerry: 072 434 4349 Laser Cross A fantastic new action-packed game that is both fun and safe. The phasers use a harmless invisible beam with great sound and light effects. A mobile setup and inflatable obstacles allow for a variety of games to be played. Ages 4 and older. R1 260 for 14 players, R90 per player thereafter including inflatable obstacles or R700 for 10 players and R70 per player thereafter excluding inflatable obstacles. Contact: 083 306 6385, lasercross@ or visit Mitchell Park Zoo Home to a variety of birds, monkeys, crocs and more. A sand-filled playground, swings, slides and jungle gyms. There are beautiful lawns where you can set up your party free or you can hire the gazebo. R130 for four hours. Gas braais permitted. Morningside. Contact: 031 322 4080 Mozart Ice Cream Classics Sells ice cream in a variety of different cones, cups and take-away tubs. Ask about their new chocolate-dipped wafer cups. Gateway, Pavilion, Suncoast, uShaka Marine World, Ballito, Midlands, Westwood and Galleria. Contact: 086 110 5724 or visit Ocean Ventures Offers fun-filled adventure parties with surfing, bodyboarding, kayaking, beach soccer, volleyball and a mini-Survivor game or treasure hunt. For ages 5 and older. R80 per child, minimum 10 children for 2½ hours. Contact Steve: 086 100 1138, or visit Paintball Adventures Paintball parties for ages nine and older. From R70 per two-hour session. Durban North and Westville. Contact: Tim 083 655 0339 (Westville), Rowan 076 444 5570 (Durban North), webmaster@xgames. or visit Playball Parties A variety of creative games and fun using all the Playball equipment at your home. From ages


3–9. Soccer or cricket parties arranged for older children. R600. Hillcrest venue hire extra R600. Contact Kim: 031 765 8780 or 083 630 5110 Scubakids Organises scuba-diving parties for children 8 years and older at your home or in their heated pool. R1 400 for up to 10 children, inclusive of all gear and fun activities. Contact Hev: 072 110 5912, or visit Soccer 5 Children enjoy a planned party tournament on a safe synthetic playing field. Various catering options available. Durban North. Contact: Janine 082 826 9714, Craig 082 337 2182, or visit The Chuck Wagon Party Venue Situated at Stonyhurst Riding School, this venue is for children who loves horses. Includes pony rides, party packs, food table, colouring-in sheets, swings and a tour of the stables. R40 per child. Hammarsdale. Contact Carole: 083 448 7807 or The Flying Donkey A venue with pony rides, a Wendy house, jungle gym, swings and bunnies. Décor, catering and party packs can be organised. Mount Edgecombe. Contact: 083 378 8899, char.delaney@telkomsa. net or visit Umgeni Steam Railway Catch the steam train from Kloof to Inchanga Station (where tables and chairs can be provided for your party) on the last Sunday of every month. Train rides are R130 per adult and R100 per child, no cost for use of tables and chairs. Visit to book your train ride. For tables and chairs contact Peter: 083 300 9064 uShaka Marine World Spend a day full of sun and fun at uShaka where you will be spoilt for choice between hosting your birthday party at Sea World or Wet ‘n Wild. R90 per child. R600 for a magician and R350 for a face painter. Contact the bookings coordinator: 031 328 8000 or bookings@


PARTY PLANNERS 1Potato2 Offers jumping castles and water slides, as well as puppet shows, a clown, fairies, princesses, Spider-Man and pirates. They also provide catering, décor and party packs. Durban and surrounds. Contact: 031 563 2138 or visit Classy Party Planners Offers a threein-one party package for 10 children, which includes a jumping castle, décor and fun ride for R1 000. Cakes, party packs, bubble machines, costumes and invitations are also available. Contact: Eshia 082 503 5170 or Rodney 083 996 8387, or visit Crazy Chameleon Kiddie Parties Specialises in children’s themed parties with décor. Additional services include cakes, party packs, balloons, accessories and jumping castles. From R400 for 10 children. Countrywide. Contact: 0861 KIDDIE, or visit Dolphin Coast Parties Specialists in boys’ and girls’ parties. They will set up tables, chairs, tablecloths (choose from a variety of colours), chair covers and banners at a venue of your choice. Forty-two themes to choose from. R26 to R36 per child. North Coast. Contact Elizabeth: 084 460 7224 or visit Dynamic Parties Offers you a complete walk-in walk-out function. You provide the venue and they do the rest. A complete package for 20 includes themed décor, signboard, tables and chairs, cups, plates, birthday cake, party packs and hats, hot dogs, juices, cupcakes, snacks, jumping castle, red carpet and clown for R2 500. Contact Shirlee: 031 400 4245, 083 596 3501 or visit Happy Faces Party Hire Specialises in themed décor, tables and chairs, tablecloths and chair covers with tiebacks, platters, party packs, photo boards, jumping castles, cupcakes and other snacks. Hillcrest area but services

greater Durban too. Contact Thandeka: 074 076 3453 or Incredible Parties Specialises in party planning. They will deliver, set up and collect everything. The service includes tables and chairs, tablecloths, plates and cups, a personalised birthday banner and invitations, party packs or buckets, balloons, party hats, whistles, wands, tiaras, masks, cakes, bubble machines, jumping castles, clowns, rides and more. Contact Igeshni: 079 184 7447 or visit Kiddies Party Factory Themed décor and accessories, including plates, cups, hats, party blowers, serviettes, balloons and gazebos. Contact Sue: 073 250 8572, or visit Monkey Magic Kiddie Parties Delivers and sets up all themed décor, tables, chairs, chair covers and tablecloths. Optional add-ons include themed plates, cups, serviettes, sweetie packs, cakes, piñatas, jumping castles and themed jelly in a tub. R350, 10 children; R450, 11–15 children; R550, 16–20 children; R650, 21–25 children and R750, 26–30 children. Contact Kerin: 082 468 3649, or visit NB Creations Takes the stress out of your child’s party by planning everything for you. Various packages available. Durban and Pietermaritzburg. Contact Nicole: 084 689 3766 or visit Party Kids Will plan your party for you, provide the décor, entertainment and catering. The party is surrounded by a party zone with optional theme-related backdrop. Chairs, tables and tablecloths; chair covers provided. Durban North, La Lucia, Umhlanga and surrounding areas. Contact Debbie: 082 579 0077, or visit  Partymakers Themed parties for little girls and boys. In addition to party décor, they can help with party packs and gift bags. Includes chairs, tables, chair covers, tablecloths and runners, plates,

cups and serviettes, themed accessories for the table and a personalised happybirthday board. Contact Debbie: 073 357 0356, or visit Party Planet Has a range of helium balloons, hot-air balloons, décor, costumes, masks, paints, cards and party accessories. Mirror ball, smoke and bubble machines available for hire. Westville. Contact: 031 266 1415 Perfect Parties for Little People Provides themed parties for boys and girls at a venue of your choice, including décor, party boxes and gift bags. Savoury snacks available. Contact Lisa: 082 647 8608 or Polka-Dot Party Provides a personalised planning service, which includes themed décor, gifts, party packs, catering, draped gazebos and activity-based entertainers. Durban and surrounding areas. Contact Sonja: 031 205 4172, 082 920 8102 or Rainbow Parties Arranges themed parties. Cakes, piñatas and party boxes are custom-made to your request. Countrywide. Contact: 072 271 5371, or visit Sugar Plum Parties Provides themed parties and will organise the party packs, cake, décor and entertainment. Contact: Clair 082 403 9144 or Nikki: 082 498 4234, clair@sugarplumparties or visit The Party Hut CC Will plan your party from start to finish. Affordable themed children’s party packages include everything from décor to venue hire. Contact Charlotte: 082 303 1568 or Wart and Fish Trading Their all-thefrills-without-the-fuss service includes authentic décor, theme-related catering, party packs and activity-based fun for all ages. They will manage your celebration from beginning to end for a stress-free, memorable party. Packages from R1 500. Contact Terry: 031 266 7573, 082 772 3020 or visit

May 2010



1 saturday The S A Showjumping Interprovincials and 2 May – Hip Grand Prix Enjoy Hip Hooray breakfast or a picnic Happy Birthday while you watch the open day horses compete. Children can have pony rides and play on the jungle gym. Also 2 May. Time: 8am–4pm. Venue: The Durban Shongweni Club, cnr Cliffdale and Kassier Rds, Assagay. Cost: free. Contact: Starstruck premières The movie tells the story of a country girl who meets a young Hollywood pop star and helps him to realise what is really important in life. Time: 10:30am on the Disney Channel (DStv, channel 303).

2 sunday The Spur Adventure Charity Challenge Three events in one day. The Adventure Challenge includes a long- or short-course mountain bike trail and trail dash with obstacles and water crossings. Helmets required. The Nature Hike is 5km–8km and suitable for the less adventurous. Take good walking shoes and refreshments. The Bush Baby Trail for children aged 6–10 starts with a sack race and includes live demonstrations and chats on nature. Time: 9am. Venue: Msinisi Shongweni Dam Reserve. Cost: Adventure Challenge Long Course R70, short course R50, nature hike R35, bush

baby trail R35. Contact: 021 789 0188, 011 707 2800 or visit The Boat and Classic Car Auction takes place as part of the Durban International Boat and Lifestyle Show. Time: 3:30pm. Venue: Durban Marina. Cost: adults R40, children R20, under 12 free. Contact: 031 266 9828 or visit Hip Hip Hooray Happy Birthday open day For children aged 1–6. A chance to enjoy all the equipment available from this new party-hiring business. Time: 11am– 2pm. Venue: Rinaldo Rd, Glen Anil. Cost: free. Contact Kerry: 072 434 4349

3 monday The Chilli Boy This popular show has had audiences flocking to Durban theatres. Multiaward winning actor Matthew Ribnick enacts the hysterical story of an old Indian woman reincarnated as a white gangster from Boksburg. Ends 9 May. Time: varies. Venue: Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre. Cost: R55. Book through Computicket:

4 tuesday Love the Babies The Robin Hood Foundation supports moms from HIV/Aidsaffected communities by distributing Love the Babies bags filled with nappies, clothes, blankets, toys and other essential items for a baby’s first year of life. Donate money, items for the bags or show your support by attending this month’s drop where 100 bags will be distributed. Time: 10am. Venue: St Mary’s Hospital, Mariannhill. Contact Helen: 082 416 0660 or visit

5 wednesday Rising Star adult acting workshops for ages 18 and older. Learn the basics of acting, stage movement, script work and more. Every Wednesday until 26 May. Time: 7pm–9pm. Venue: Westville Theatre Club. Cost: varies. Contact: 083 326 3257, 082 994 0984, enquiries@risingstaracademy. or visit

6 thursday Activate Dance A dynamic performance of hip-hop and other trendy dance genres by B-Rock Dance. Also 7 May. Time: 7pm. Venue: Hilton College Theatre, Hilton. Cost: R45. Contact: 033 383 0126/7 or tickets@ Naartjie’s winter range arrives in stores today. Enjoy their gift card giveaway promotion, which allows you to earn vouchers as you spend. For more info: visit

7 friday The Sunflower Fund 10th Anniversary Charity Ball in association with International Bank Vaults pays tribute to beneficiaries and sponsors/donors of the Sunflower Fund. Time: 6:30pm. Venue: Southern Sun’s Elangeni Hotel, Marine Parade. Cost: R600. Contact: 078 207 9041, or visit Mr Price Karkloof Classic Mountain Bike Festival SA’s biggest mountain bike festival offers riders a revised programme in one of the best settings in SA. Exciting courses include a 19km family-experience ride, 10km family-fun ride and a 20km night race. The event attracts over 3 000 riders. Ends 9 May. Time: varies. Venue: Karkloof Country Club. Cost: R20–R210. Contact: Stu 083 456 8435 or Doug 072 071 5539, stu@impiconceptevents. com or visit

8 saturday

1 May – Starstruck


May 2010

Hillcrest Primary School family-fun day includes arena events, stalls, food and prizes to be won. Time: 9am–2:30pm. Venue: 17 Emoyeni Dr, Hillcrest. Cost: free entry. Contact: admin@hillcrestprimary. or visit Montpelier Pre-Primary school open day and market View the school, meet the staff and browse the goods for sale including children’s fashion. There’s also a

6 May – Activate Dance

tea garden. Time: 9am–12:30pm. Venue: 210 Montpelier Rd, Morningside. Cost: free. Contact: 031 312 6670

9 sunday Mother’s Day lunch includes a threecourse set menu and a red rose for mom. Time: bookings from noon. Venue: Granny Mouse Country House and Spa, KwaZuluNatal Midlands. Cost: R220. Contact: 033 234 4071 or visit

9 Mother’s Day Music at the Lake The event features the KwaZuluNatal Philharmonic Orchestra (KZNPO). Take a picnic and enjoy a relaxing afternoon with your family. Children are entertained in the Kids’ Zone from 1:30pm. Secure parking on the Juventus ground. Time: gates open at 12:30pm; concert starts at 2:30pm. Venue: Durban Botanic Gardens. Cost: tbc. Contact: 031 309 1170 or 031 202 5819



what’s on in may

For a free listing, email your event to durban@childmag. or fax 031 207 3429. Info must be received by 7 May for the June/July issue. Info submitted for the calendar must include all relevant details and no guarantee can be given that it will be published. Compiled by TRACY ELLIS

Celebrate Mother’s Day at Golden Hours’ rustic family market. Free tea and coffee for moms plus live music and giveaways. The market is a fundraising initiative of Golden Hours School for Special Needs Children and offers safe parking, an adventure playground, breakfasts and roast lunches. Time: 10:30am–3:30pm. Venue: Uitsig Rd, Durban North. Cost: free entry. Contact Lyn: 083 262 3693

10 monday The Party Police, is a highly trained group of party animals on a constant mission to rid the world of boring social gatherings. Audience participation forms the basis of the performance. Ends 22 May. Time: 6pm. Venue: Upper Deck Restaurant, uShaka Marine World. Cost: R60. Food and beverages extra. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit Marie Biscuit Coffee Shoppe mornings start today Enjoy a selection of eats, tea and coffee while you relax with friends. Ends 21 May. Time: 9am–2pm. Venue: Maris Stella School, Stephen Dlamini Rd. Cost: free entry. Contact: 031 209 9426

11 tuesday The dangers of human trafficking A workshop for parents and educators to provide information about adult- and child- trafficking; its dangers, definition and what to be aware of leading up to the 2010 Fifa World Cup. Time: 5:30pm– 7:30pm. Venue: tbc. Cost: R150. Contact: 031 582 7414, bookings@the–guardian. or visit the– Moms and babes meeting A representative from Aspen will speak on travelling with children followed by a talk by audiologist Lauren Glassop. Time: 9am–10:30am. Venue: Alberlito Storks Nest Clinic, Ballito. Cost: free. Contact: 032 946 6956 or 032 946 1826

15 May – Bell’s Fort Nottingham Highland and Traditional Games

over the past 60 years, performed by Anthony Stonier and Junaid Cassimjee. Ends 16 May. Time: Friday and Saturday, 8:30pm; Sundays, 6:30pm. Venue: The Rhumbelow Theatre, Glenwood. Cost: R100. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit

15 saturday

BAT Centre poetry circle Established and aspiring poets meet to read their pieces, discuss their writing and inspire one another. Every Wednesday. Time: 5pm–7pm. Venue: 45 Maritime Place, Durban. Cost: free. For more info: 031 332 0451 or visit

Bell’s Fort Nottingham Highland and Traditional Games offers a variety of family entertainment including athletic games, a strong-man competition, pipe bands, traditional dancing, herding and a horse-and-carriage display. Food is on sale. Children can enjoy a jungle gym and a jumping castle. Time: tbc. Venue: Fort Nottingham fields, Nottingham Rd, Midlands. Cost: tbc. Contact: 083 227 2376 or visit International Day of Families The theme for 2010 is “The impact of migration on families around the world”. The International Day of Families promotes the importance of healthy, well-balanced families in societies and cultures. Set aside the day to spend quality time with your family. For more info visit

13 thursday

16 sunday

The KZNPO World Symphony Series winter season runs every Thursday for four weeks. The season opens with conductor Joseph Wolfe and pianist Katya Apekisheva performing Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3. Ends 3 June. Time: 7:30pm. Venue: Durban City Hall. Cost: tbc. Contact: 031 369 9438/9404

Monkey Nuts The latest crazy Ribnick/ Naidoo comedy delivers a clever mix of situational comedy, storytelling and unforgettable characters. Ends 23 May. Time: varies. Venue: Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre. Cost: varies. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit Sunset Proms The Kwazulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra performs and soloists include former Idols contestant Lize Heerman. Various schools participate in a cultural festival. Take picnic chairs and blankets. Food and drinks are on sale.

12 wednesday

14 friday Oh Boy! Bassey! A unique cabaret style tribute to the legendary Dame Shirley Bassey featuring her most popular songs durban’s

May 2010


family marketplace


The Dolphin Mile Surf Swim Series

A one-mile swim out to sea and back for swimmers 10 years and older. Time: registration 7am; swim 8am. Venue: uShaka pier. Cost: R60. Contact Heather: 082 320 7083 or

Time: gates open 10am, cultural festival 11am, KZNPO 2:30pm. Venue: Crawford La Lucia, 79 Armstrong Avenue. Cost: R30– R60. Contact: 031 562 9444 or bgroger@

17 monday Funk 2010 Pietermaritzburg and KwaZulu-Natal Midlands schools choreograph, rehearse and perform dance theatre in a professional environment. Also 18 and 19 May. Time: 7:30pm. Venue: Hilton College Theatre, Hilton. Cost: R45. Contact: 033 383 0126/7 or

18 tuesday International Museum Day The theme for 2010 is “Museums for Social Harmony”. Visit the Durban Natural Science Museum where the whole family can learn about everything from fossils and reptiles to mammals and birds. The life-size model of the T-rex will delight children and adults alike. Time: Monday–Saturday, 8:30am– 4pm; Sunday, 11am–4pm. Cost: free. Venue: First floor, Durban City Hall, Smith St. Contact: 031 311 2256 or 031 311 2240

19 wednesday E-Learner IT certification every Wednesday. Suitable for high school learners and adults, this course teaches Information Communication Technology (ICT) skills in a fun, educational way. Time: 1pm–2pm. Venue: 125 Ridgeton Towers, 6 Aurora Dr, Umhlanga Ridge. Cost: R150. Contact: 031 566 1110, 082 042 2556, or visit

26 May – Book market


May 2010

20 thursday Rock Circus features a live band, aerial acrobatics, clowns, fire-eaters, jugglers and six decades of music. An entertaining ringmaster guides you through this amazing experience. Ends 30 May. Time: Tuesday–Saturday, 8pm; Sunday, 2pm. Venue: Barnyard Theatre, Gateway. Cost: R85–R120. Contact: 031 566 3045 or visit

21 friday Kevin Perkins aka Mike Naicker Mike relates his new life experiences from his travels abroad and his prospects for world domination. A combination of Perkins’s mainstream comedy and Naicker’s antics. Also 22 May. Time: 8pm. Venue: Izulu Theatre, Sibaya Casino. Cost: R110. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit

22 saturday The Discovery East Coast Radio Mini Big Walk, a 1,5km fun walk through the uShaka Marine World park. Children receive free goodies and finish the walk with a dolphin show in the dolphin stadium. Event is limited to first 1 200 entrants. Pre-entries close 9 May. New entries only accepted today if the quota of 1 200 has not been met. Time: registration 7am; starts 8am. Venue: uShaka Marine World. Cost: R30 per child; includes one accompanying adult; R10 per additional person over 8 years also walking. For more info and to download an entry form: visit

23 sunday The Discovery East Coast Radio Big Walk Four routes and over 8 000 walkers make this the biggest family participation event in Durban. Time: 7:15am (20km), 8am (15km and 10km), 8:30am (5km). Venue: uShaka Marine World and Mishi Jones Baseball Park, Durban. Cost: R45–R60. Funds raised support Winter Warmth campaign. Entries close 9 May. For more info: 083 910 3825 or visit Coffee, cake and wisdom A meaningful coffee morning with Buddhist monk and meditation teacher Kelsang Phuntsog. Time: 10am–11am. Venue: Star Anise Contemporary Food Café, Hillcrest. Cost: free entry. Contact: 031 765 2162, or visit durban’s

24 monday 24 Hours On Broadway A musical tribute to the popular Broadway hits cabaret extravaganza that played at the nowdefunct Kwasuka Theatre two years ago. Nominated for the Mercury Durban Theatre Awards in 2008, this glitzy and vibrant cabaret presented by Dean and Janine Bennewith features sassy, elegant dancers. Time: varies. Venue: Heritage Theatre, Hillcrest. Cost: R165–R190. Contact: 031 765 4137 or visit

25 tuesday @tap children’s playground and coffee corner is open Tuesday–Saturday for parents to relax and have a cuppa while children enjoy the large safe playground. Don’t miss their big-screen story time at 10am on Saturday. Time: Tuesday–Friday 9am–4pm; Saturday 8am–2pm. Venue: 20 MacKeurtan Ave, Durban North. Cost: free entry. Contact: 031 563 0882

26 wednesday Book market every Wednesday. Meet friends for light refreshments and let the children enjoy the large playground while you browse through second-hand books. Time: 10am–3pm. Venue: Golden Hours Family Market, Durban North. Cost: free entry. Contact: 031 208 2251 or 083 262 3693

27 thursday Art classes Suitable for ages 6–10 or 11 years and older. Lessons in drawing skills, painting and sculpture. Time: weekdays, 10am–noon and 3:30pm–5:30pm; Saturday, 9am–11am (ages 11 and older), 11am–12:30pm (ages 6–10 years). Venue: 65 Ethelbert Rd, Malvern. Cost: R250 per month. For more info: 073 540 9210 or

28 friday The Little Mermaid Students of all ages from the Ros Nicholson School of Ballet showcase their dance skills. Also 29 May. Time: varies. Venue: Hilton College Theatre, Hilton. Cost: tbc. Contact: 033 383 0126/7 or The Royal Show offers you the chance to see some of the country’s finest livestock and agricultural equipment, plus food hall, interactive-crafts hall and military tattoo,

Lipizzaner display, concerts and more. Ends 6 June. Time: from 9am. Venue: The Royal Showgrounds, Pietermaritzburg. Cost: adults R35, children R20. Contact: 033 345 6274 or visit World Play Day 2010 The Children’s Rights Centre, in celebration of World Play Day, is hosting a workshop on how to run a children’s holiday club. For details of the event contact: 031 307 6075

29 saturday

29 May – Kitchen garden course durban’s

Child Abuse Awareness Course suitable for parents and teachers. Learn about the different types of abuse and how to identify warning signs. Also discussed is age-appropriate behaviour and when to discuss sex and sexuality with children. Time: 8:30am–12:30pm. Venue: tbc.

Cost: R250. Contact: 031 582 7414, bookings@the– or visit the– Kitchen garden course Learn how to cultivate an organic kitchen garden. Using companion planting and other permaculture design ideas, this course offers a practical introduction to food gardening. Tea and lunch included. Time: 8:30am– 3pm. Venue: Durban Botanic Gardens’ Permaculture Training Centre. Cost: R375. Contact: 031 322 4021, 031 309 1170,

30 sunday The Comrades Marathon This year the 89km ultra-distance marathon is downhill, with runners leaving ’Maritzburg at 5:30am. Support athletes along the route or watch

from home as the event will be televised. For more info visit CROW open day Take a guided tour and gain insight into the world of wildlife rehabilitation. Time: 10:30am. Venue: 2 Coedmore Ave, Yellowwood Park. Cost: R15. For more info: 031 462 1127, info@ or visit

31 monday Ethekweni high schools’ climatechange competition The top three entries will win a state-of-the-art solar thermal water heater or rainwater harvesting system for their school. To enter, pupils (teachers can lend a hand) need to compile a report and design a poster on climate change. Entries close 7 June. Contact: 031 311 4277 or visit May 2010


last laugh

do you lie to your children? Of course you do. SAM WILSON,

Joe, Sam and Benj


orking on a parenting website means I get to be part of a lot of child-rearing chat... which is mostly fascinating, warm, honest and affirming. Recently, there’s been a lot of rather jocular discussion on the topic of “The lies we tell our children”… and it’s been freaking me out a bit. I get that everyone lies to their children a little. About festive folk or creatures, for example. Or age-appropriate fudging about how babies are made. Although it’s not been along the lines of either of these topics, of course I have lied too. Unfortunately, I am a very bad liar, and as my children age they have begun to make fun of me for it. Just last week, for example, Joey came into the lounge bearing a tooth that had been in his slipper for almost a month.


May 2010

“It would be really cool if the Tooth Fairy could come back from holiday,” he said to me, with a raised eyebrow. “I know she’s recently been paid and probably has some money in her fairy wallet at the moment.” Feeling horribly guilty I replied apologetically, “I am so sorry honey. I am sure she’ll come tonight. And if not, maybe you could let me know when you go to brush your teeth in the morning?” “Done,” said Joe. “But she should know that teeth that have been allowed to dry out thoroughly are a little more expensive.” “Consider her appropriately informed,” I said. We then grinned mischievously at each other, with the delight of a joke shared but unspoken. It’s not those lies that get to me. It’s the Der Struwwelpeter ones, specifically designed to scare the living daylights out of children, so they’ll do what you want them to do, like: “If you don’t

clean your pee-pee properly, it’s going to fall off!” or “When you chew on bubblegum, you actually chew on your brain”. Or, even more inexplicably, “If you scratch in your navel, your butt will fall off!” (I am not making these up. All three are examples shared by readers on our website.) I believe that most children start out nice, and don’t need to be civilised into acceptable members of society. So why would we want to scare them this badly? Many go on and on about having teenagers who lie to them. But perhaps if you’ve always employed this kind of nasty “behave yourself!” lie to discipline your children, it’s no great leap that they’d get a little two-faced themselves? Honesty and respect are, by nature, two-way streets. Why play so fast and loose with your half of that family contract? And that’s aside from the fact that most of these lies are seriously stupid. And children aren’t stupid; they are just

small, with limited life experience. Once a child gets over the fear inherent in one of these whoppers, it becomes clear very quickly that your butt is not going to fall off, regardless of how much you might dig in your bellybutton. If I was that child, I’d feel very put out if my parents condescended to me to that degree. I know that I am jumping into judgemental territory here, which I try and stay away from, but children don’t often have the platform to speak for themselves about this kind of thing, and I thought I’d have a bash at child advocacy. After all, these are the people who are going to try and sell Shady Pines to us as a fabulous place to live out our remaining years. And isn’t that a scary thought? Sam Wilson is the Editor-in-Chief of Parent24, Women24 and Food24. She hopes her children are saving their Tooth Fairy money for a seriously nice old folks’ home.



however, takes issue with the mean lie.

Child Magazine | Durban May 2010  

Durban's best guide for parents