The overcast skies and inclement weather did nothing to dampen enthusiastic spirits at the annual Cape Leopard Trust luncheon held at Leopard’s Leap Family Vineyards on Saturday, 15 August.
Over 150 guests and friends gathered to celebrate the Trust's 11th birthday with Cederberg and Winelands inspired cuisine crafted by chefs Pieter de Jager, Michelle Theron (of Leopard’s Leap and La Motte) and Christo Pretorius and Floris Smith (of the Twelve Apostles Hotel & Spa and Bushmanskloof Wilderness Reserve) complemented by exquisite wines courtesy of hosts Leopard’s Leap. MC’s Elana Afrika-Bredenkamp and Africa Melane, along with local musician, James Stewart, entertained the crowd and lunch was followed by a lively auction led by Joey Burke, who coincidentally had been the auctioneer at the very first Cape Leopard Trust fundraiser.
Joey enticed the crowd with an array of art, food, travel and fashion inspired auction lots, including culinary experiences, Wilderness Safaris and Virgin Limited Edition wildlife packages, a Red Carnation Hotels and Avis Getaway, a Bill Harrop Balloon Safari, The Diamond Works white diamond earrings, a Dylan Lewis leopard sculpture, a Leopard’s Leap Culinaria 18l, art from painter Andrew Wright, world renowned photographer Adrian Steirn, and Franschoek artist Kim Donaldson, a stay at La Residence from Liz Byden, a unique Taunina bear from Tracy Young and a More - Made to Measure suit.
It is incredible to think how far the organisation has come since then with its efforts in predator conservation and environmental education, thanks to wonderful partners, without whom this work would not be possible.
The event’s headline sponsors were Bridgestone, Fusion Global and FNB, along with the team at Leopards’s Leap Family Vineyards, long term supporters of the Trust. The auction raised over R450,000 of much needed funding to ensure that our Cape leopards remain in good hands.