Two exciting events celebrating wood and woodworking will be held in the Southern Cape in September.
The Woodturning and Woodworking Symposium and Expo will be held at Nelson Mandela University’s George Campus from 22-25 September 2017. This will be followed a few days later by the Knysna Timber Festival which will take place at Timber Village in Knysna from 29 September to 1 October.
The Association of Woodturners of South Africa, a non-profit organisation dedicated to the advancement of the art of woodturning, has teamed up with the Working with Wood initiative to host the 2017 event.
The beautiful NMU George Campus will once again serve as the hub of the festivities with displays, lectures, tool and project demonstrations, food stalls and entertainment for both adults and children.
During the event a number of renowned South African and international craftsmen will share their skills and insights. There will be a trade show of machinery, tools, supplies and turning stock, together with an exhibition of wonderful turned art.
Richard Müller, Wood Technology Programme Co-ordinator of the School of Natural Resource Management at Nelson Mandela University has made himself available to take mountain-biking enthusiasts out to explore the mountain bike trails in the vicinity of the Campus throughout the show.
Those who prefer hiking will be able to enjoy 6, 8 or 12km circular routes in the indigenous forest surrounding the Campus under the guidance of expert personnel from the University who are knowledgeable about the ecosystems.
All Working with Wood Show demonstrations are free of charge to show visitors. Woodworking experts will demonstrate how to use specialist woodworking tools to create and finish a wooden item from scratch. This year the demonstrations will include clamping, routing, caring for timber and nailing. Festool and Kreg will also have some of their cutting-edge products on show. It is important to note that special show prices will be available throughout the festival.
Knysna Timber Festival
Meanwhile Timber Village, the venue for the Knysna Timber Festival, is still rising from the ashes after its total destruction in the recent fire disaster. However it is expected to be more than ready to host the popular festival, according to Morné Smith, chairman of the Knysna Timber Initiative (KTI).
The firm expectation is that the workshop and a shed for the mobile sawmill donated by Woodmizer to KTI and the Knysna community, will be complete and up and running for the event at Timber Village.
Indoor exhibition and demonstration space will be in big tents as before, with outdoor space available for machinery and other demonstrations.
“The festival will offer much the same as last year, with an increased focus on providing a platform for marketing of wood related businesses, and because of last year’s success, more exhibitors are expected,” according to Morné.
There will be educational and skills building projects for children where they can assemble and decorate wooden planter boxes for indigenous trees, and also a bigger focus on the demonstration of woodworking machines, amongst others the donated Woodmizer portable sawmill, which is to be a symbol of the rebuilding of Knysna after the fire. A woodturning expert from the United States will give demonstrations and a skills building course on woodturning.