All roads will be leading to Botswana’s home of beef, Lobatse, between May 29th and 31st for the annual and highly anticipated Lobatse International Beef Festival. The festival will take place at the Lobatse Town Park. According to its founder Barolong Seboni, this year’s event offers more as there are new activities that revelers can look forward to.
“This time around the festival is a three day event which starts on Friday and ends on Sunday which was not the case in the past. We have improved our Agricultural Expo of cattle breeds known as Masakeng by adding stalls of cattle vaccines and other veterinary supplies. So we are not just showcasing breeds but other supplies that will aid in rearing these breeds. We have also added 4×4 trucks exhibition called Nkisa morakeng which will be in front on the park. The exhibition is meant to showcase suitable trucks to use at the cattle post as well as outdoor camping merchandise that will cater for those who are adventurous. We would also be adding a competition called Pimp my bakkie where individuals will be showcasing their pimped out vans and bakkies and the best will win various sponsorships from different spares and accessories dealerships. So far we are receiving positive feedback from different dealerships,” Seboni said.
He also highlighted that even though they have added these Agriculture related activities to the event they have also catered for meat lovers who will be in for a treat as they have improved their Braii Challenge Competition. “The festival’s mission is to promote and celebrate Botswana beef and its contribution to the country’s economy as well as to strengthen community spirit and create a vibe through the celebration of our beef. So this time around we have a braaing challenge of 25 teams. Each team will have between 5 and 10 people who will come up with braii recipes and show us how they braai. There will be judges who will select the best tasting beef. Anyone can join and make up their own teams to join the challenge and it can either be a group of friends or individuals with a common interest. This challenge will be sponsored by Lengau Wines who will also be showcasing their wines at the festival,” said Seboni.
On the last day of the beef fest, the 31st, the organisers have also introduced the beef fest jazz festival which will feature mostly local jazz artists and maybe one international artist. Seboni added that they have not finalised the entertainment lineup yet as they are still confirming with their invited artists. “Our objective is to promote local artists and our entertainment lineup will be dominated by local acts and maybe we will also have a South African artist.”
The festival, which was founded in March 2013, also aims to position Lobatse as a vibrant town with the necessary amenities necessary for business and economic growth. It is also expected to strengthen Lobatse’s image as a major international player in the beef industry. “Since its inception the festival has benefited Lobatse a great deal. The event promoted domestic tourism as it attracts revelers from all over the country and other countries so the town becomes alive and busy. We have also received positive feedback from hotels and lodges in Lobatse as their occupancy rate rises to almost 100% on the weekend of the festival something which we are aiming for,” Seboni said.