A record 120 000 people gathered in the city centre on Sunday 29 November to witness the colourful extravaganza of light and sound when the festive lights were switched on by Executive Mayor Dan Plato. The lights were switched on at 20:00 by Mayor Plato, who said: “120 000 Capetonians have told the world – we’re ready to host 2010.” FIFA Secretary-General Jerome Valcke, who joined the Mayor on stage for the switch-on, said: “It was amazing. I felt like a rock star for 30 seconds.”
The ceremony, now in its 43rd year, included a star-studded concert featuring award-winning performers such as Ringo Madlingozi, Jozi, Emo Adams, The Boyz, The Rockets, Ready D, Die Broers, Soli Philander and Joe Barber. Soccer fans visited a ‘soccer zone’, near the Heerengracht circle to meet players from Cape Town clubs Ajax CT and Santos FC, and Bafana Bafana stars Matthew Booth and Lance Davids. Other entertainment included a diski dance competition, five-a-side soccer games and ‘foosball’ play-offs. The evening’s activities ended with the traditional carnival parade, which featured some exciting floats.
Table Mountain was also lit up between dusk and midnight, and will be lit until midnight on the Final Draw night. “As one of the world’s most famous landmarks, Table Mountain is bound to feature prominently in the newscasts that will be beamed from Cape Town to some 200 countries and an audience estimated at 150 million,” says Lesley de Reuck, Cape Town’s Director: 2010 Operations. Until 2 January, the mountain lights will be switched on just after the electricity peak and will stay on until 22:00. This year, the City has introduced several measures to make the festive lights as energy efficient as possible, says the City’s Director of Electricity Services, Dr Leslie Rencontre. By using energy efficient rope lighting. The City has cut the electricity consumption of its festive light displays by over 50%. About 10 km of rope lighting was used to create the displays. The City has bought ‘green’ energy to light the mountain during the season.
Cape Town Final Draw Festival in Long Street on Friday 4 December is going to be an event not to be missed. In addition to the great lineup of musicians, there will be all sorts of other entertainment, including carnival characters, stilt walkers and fire dancers. The programme involves the following:
• 12:00 – Cultural Performers
• 13:30 – Alistar Izobel and Band
• 13.55 – Alistar Izobel sings ‘Welcome to Cape Town’, joined by Zakumi to welcome FIFA representatives to launch the Fan Fest project.
• 14:00 – Fan Fest launch (with onstage photo opportunities)
• 14:20 – Cultural performers (four acts to perform for approximately 20 minutes each)
• 16:20 – Fancy Galada
• 16:45 – To be confirmed
• 17:02 – Flat Stanley
• 17:35 – TKZee
• 18:15 – K’Naan
• 19:00 – Live draw broadcast
• 20:45 – ‘Africa Unite’ Segment (song produced by Cedric Samson)
• 20:52 – Freshlyground
• 21:50 – Cassette
• 22:45 – Jimmy Dludlu
• 24:00 – Wind-down to end