Maropeng and Origins Centre receive international news interest

  • February 19, 2009

Maropeng and Wits University’s Origins Centre have been the focus of international press coverage recently, with the release of a syndicated Associated Press article about the wealth of paleoanthropological information and sites in the area.

“South Africa’s economic hub is the very model of a skyscraping major city. But Johannesburg also is a Mecca for those with an interest in the pre-modern – the very, very pre-modern,” writes AP staffer Donna Bryson.

“If you’re not South African, you may never have heard of either spot. The fossils were found in a more than 11,000-acre [about 4,450 ha] region declared a World Heritage Site in 1999 that recently underwent a major renovation. The visitors’ centre, known as Maropeng, opened in 2005 and welcomed 230,000 people in 2008, its best year so far. Most were day-trippers from Johannesburg or Pretoria,” the article continues.

Read the full article here.

The story featured in USAToday, the US’s biggest-selling newspaper; with 2.2-million copies printed daily, its circulation is the second highest in the world.

The article is syndicated, so at least eight US and Canadian newspapers have run the story, resulting in hundreds of thousands of people reading about our local treasures – another reason to be a proud Gautenger and South African.

SABC 2’s Weekend Live also featured Maropeng on February 14, 2009, interviewing Curator Lindsay Marshall, Marketing Manager Erica Saunders and other related guests on location in Maropeng. The discussion centred on the upcoming 10-year anniversary of the declaration of South Africa’s first three UNESCO World Heritage Sites – including the Cradle of Humankind.

Maropeng’s road signage petition and Darwin exhibition, Darwin, Origins and Africa, have also been the talk of the town recently, receiving considerable air time on Talk Radio 702.

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