It took visits to 23 other cities in Washington state before Ichikawa, Japan, was sure it had found a potential “sister” in Port Townsend.
That was back in 1996, when the rural city of 15,000 had contacted the Hyogo Business and Culture Center in Seattle to help it find a match.
While the two cities don’t share geographic similarities, a representative from the cultural center saw “similar values and character of people” between Ichikawa and Port Townsend, according to Port Townsend Mayor Kees Kolff.
On Oct. 24, the relationship between the two cities that began six years ago was formalized when 20 Port Townsend delegates — including Kolff and Deputy Mayor Freida Fenn — visited Ichikawa to sign an official sister city agreement.
Delegates, most of whom returned to Port Townsend late last week, said they had made a strong connection with their hosts and were awed by the amount of efforts put out on their behalf.
“They really rolled out the red carpet for us,” said Fenn, who made the trip with her daughter, Freya.
————–The rest of the story appears in the Tuesday Peninsula Daily News Jefferson County edition. Click on SUBSCRIBE at the top to get the PDN delivered to your home or office.