The 31st annual Freshpak Fitness Festival took place on Saturday, 30 September outside the Cederberg town of Clanwilliam, on the banks of the Clanwilliam Dam.
Professional athletes and fitness enthusiasts gathered from all over to partake in the swims, biathlon, duathlon and triathlon, and also the Run for Fun. Even the young ones got a chance to showcase their prowess in the Fitkids Individuals and Fitkids Relay Teams events.
The local rooibos supply and packaging company Rooibos Ltd – an established and reputable giant in the industry, with global market ties and shareholders – was yet again a proud co-sponsor of the festival, alongside big brands like Freshpak and Standard Bank.
“We outsourced 60 employees to help out at the festival with race registrations, promotions, general tasks and as race marshals. Another 180 members from the community were deployed to provide security for athletes and spectators, and to man the 4 water points on the route. This is very much about creating not only more recognition for the brand, but also providing local residents with the opportunity to be involved with this all-important project,” says Gerda de Wet, Communications Manager for Rooibos Ltd.
Locals weren’t the only benefactors of the festival, though. CANSA (The Cancer Association of South Africa) had a prominent booth at the festival, and received a certain percentage of all race and car entry fees at the festival to fund further research in the fight against cancer. In turn, they supplied unlimited sunscreen and spray for athletes, spectators and service providers alike, and conducted free mole analysis for signs of carcinoma.
“Research has proven Rooibos’ efficacy as a natural cancer combatant and soother,” says Hanli van Zyl, CANSA community mobiliser. “It’s great to be a part of a festival that promotes exercising and to be affiliated with the wonder-plant that is rooibos.”
Revered personalities also partook in the race, including Women’s Health Magazine’s Digital Editor Gina Dionisio and writer Michelle October, who represented the publication in the biathlon, and media personality Stacey Holland.
During the evening’s prize giving, the benefits of the Rooibos plant – including sunburn relief, efficacy in delaying type 2 diabetes, sleep enhancement and anti-aging properties – were discussed at great depth.
“We believe events like these are crucial for promoting the Rooibos industry, which in turn grows the South African economy,” says Gerda de Wet. “It is fantastic to see that interest in the wonderplant seems to grow more and more each year. After all, what could be better than an ice cold rooibos ice tea after getting a workout under the Cederberg sun?”
The next Freshpak Fitness festival is scheduled to take place over the last weekend of September 2018.