The Lethbridge Twinning Society Celebrates Canada's 150th Anniversary south of the border with Hibikiya in Great Falls, Montana.
On April 22, 2017, members of the Lethbridge Twinning Society (LTS) journeyed to Great Falls for the annual Ice Breaker Road Race. LTS members enjoyed a hearty welcome from Great Falls Mayor, Bob Kelly. Lethbridge and Great Falls were able to culminate the visit both as "sister cities" and in celebration of Canada's 150th birthday.

In the spirit of friendship, an Alberta flag was hung at the Civic Centre where the hub for the Ice Breaker Road Race was located. Along for the journey was Lethbridge's authentic Japanese Taiko drum group, HIBIKIYA, lead by Bryan Pereverseff. The group performed throughout the day, which was a relief for the runners when the weather took a turn for worse.

HIBIKIYA even performed for Great Falls Mayor, Bob Kelly at a private residence on the evening prior to the Ice Breaker event. Both visitors and hosts were able to spend time perusing Great Falls, taking in the sites, which was followed by an impressive meal cooked by Montana's Sister City members before LTS members hit the road for Canada.

Please see:

The Lethbridge Twinning Society would like to offer opportunities from your Japanese communities to study English as a Second Language
The Lethbridge Twinning Society wishes to collaborate with and extend an open invitation to other communities in Alberta which have Japanese "Sister City" relations and would like to offer opportunities from your Japanese communities to study English as a Second Language (ESL). Two years ago, we attended a workshop/symposium in our Sister City, Towada City, Japan where we made a presentation respecting opportunities to study English as a Second Language in Lethbridge. In our delegation were representatives from the University of Lethbridge, Lethbridge College and Flexibility Learning Systems. Each of these learning institutions offer ESL programs.

The Lethbridge Twinning Society will assist with hosting participants and arranging for reasonable priced "homestay" accommodations.

For more information, please contact: or call 403-381-0038.

Pilot Project to Begin – English as Second Language and Canadian Cultural Experience
February 04th to March 18th – 2013

The Lethbridge Twinning Society in conjunction with the Towada City Association for International Relations is very pleased to introduce a "Pilot – Project" that we believe will become a mainstay and a model to other English as a Second Language seekers.

On February 04, 2013, Ms. Risa Kumarisa will be arriving in Lethbridge. She will be greeted by members of the Lethbridge Twinning Society (LTS)and will be provided homestay facilities that have been arranged by the LTS. She will be accepted at Flexible Learning Systems (FLS) where she will enter into a customized "English as a second language" (ESL) program. The Manager at FLS is a long time LTS member and has assisted in several ESL programs for us in the past. The outcomes have all been stellar.

We welcome Risa!

A/JTMA Conference 2013 - Didsbury, Alberta
Gary, Carol, Harold and Michael attended the Alberta/Japan Twinned Municipalities Association (A/JTMA) conference in Didsbury.

Read more:

ARAO Teiichi about the current situation in Japan
Hello the directing members of the Lethbridge Twinning Society.

As you know from the world news coverages, the eastern-northern half part of Japan from the Tokyo area to the Hokkaido area was hit by the largest earthquake officially recorded in Japan. The energy released was magnitude9.0, one of the strongest officially recorded of the world ever! The earthquake intensity was 7.0 at the strongest in the Japanese standard, which means that almost all buildings, even though built of concrete, would be destroyed instantly.

When the earthquake occurred, the graduation celebrating party of Kitasato University in Towada City had just begun and the speech of the Dean suddenly stopped. The light disappeared due to the power blackout. But all the students and professors are accustomed to earthquake, no one fell into a panic. They all evacuated from the party room to the outdoors led by the clerks in charge. The party was aborted and the dean told them to go back home and to the university to confirm the safety.

The water supply was maintained very fortunately.

Very large scale TSUNAMI again and again hit the shores facing the Pacific Ocean and the Japan Sea, which reminds you of the ones that occurred in Sumatra Island in 2004. Many people living in the area facing the Pacific Ocean seem to have got hit and taken away by the wave. TSUNAMI, which means "harbor wave," is not simply a wave. It is like a flooding sea that runs very fast, as fast as the Japanese bullet train.

Furthermore, nuclear power stations that locate along the Pacific Ocean shore in the Fukushima prefecture got hit by the strong earthquake and got their reactors destroyed. The news tells that melt down of their reactors occurred, radioactive materials spilled out and tens of people were contaminated by the radioactives.

Towada City locates 35 km west of Hachinohe city that was hit by the strong TSUNAMI and heavily damaged. And it also locates about 70m high from the sea level. So we have no fear of TSUNAMI. And the earthquake intensity in Towada City was only 5, which means that walls would be cracked or chimneys would fall down. But no chimney fell down in Towada City. Maybe you would be able to find cracks on some walls if you were careful enough.

The electricity supply was recovered at around 23:05 on March 12. The citizens are recovering their daily life now. No one died or missing in Towada City. very fortunately. But other cities and communities seem to have serious damages by the earthquake and the TSUNAMI, especially Hachinohe.

Now all the trains in the eastern-northern half of Japan stop. No one can predict the recovery. The track of the bullet train from Tokyo to Aomori is said to be seriously damaged. Many power poles on the track fell down and some concrete poles that support the track were destroyed. Short-time recovery is impossible. Maybe it takes a month or so.

Anyway, no one died and missing in Towada City. Towada City survived the earthquake and is heading to the recovery.

Sincerely yours,
ARAO Teiichi

March 13, 2011

ARAO Teiichi - from Japan, June 13, 2011
Hello Harold!!

I received the donation from the Lethbridge Twinning Society for Towada City on Monday, June 13.

Thank you very much!!

When your kind message was read at the general assembly of the Towada City Association for International Relationship (TAIR), Mr. Haruwo SHIRAYAMA, the president of the TAIR, told that your donation should be used effectively for evacuees who were from other areas and living in Towada City.

I'm sure that it would be used effectively to relief them. As I told you in an email sent just two days after the earthquake, Towada City was not damaged so heavily as other areas along the Pacific
shore. And my city locates about 350km north of the crippled nuclear power plant in the Fukushima prefecture. The bad effect of the nuclear accident is rarely detected in Towada City. So most citizens already recovered their daily life.

Due to the damaged nulcear reactors, it takes very long time to achieve a true recovery. But people will stand up again, just as they stood up from the ruins after the second world war.

Thank you again for your kind donation!!

With the best regards,
ARAO Teiichi

Consul General Susumu Fukuda visits Lethbridge
On May 13, 2013 the Lethbridge Twinning Society hosted Consul General, Susumu Fukuda as he visited Lethbridge.

Firstly, Mr. Fukuda visited the University of Lethbridge where he met
Mr. Mike Mahon (President) along with many other administration members. This was the first opportunity Mr. Fukuda had to visit our University.

Secondly, Mr. Fukuda was hosted by the President of the Lethbridge Twinning Society, Harold Pereverseff, along with Directors, Carol Kensley and Diane Minamide, for dinner at Lethbridge’s Ric’s Grill.

After dinner, Mr. Fukuda delivered a lecture on “Japan-Alberta Relations: Past and Present – Towards New Perspectives”. The lecture was presented at the Lethbridge Public Library and was open to the public. The lecture was well attended. A panel answered questions from the audience as well joined in asking questions of the Consul General. Lethbridge’s “Global News” was on hand to record part of the lecture and also to interview Mr. Fukuda.

We thank Consul General Fukuda very much for his time and effort for coming to Lethbridge and to present his informative lecture to us.

Japan-Alberta Relations: Past and Present – Towards New Perspectives
The Lethbridge Twinning Society
Carol Kensley – Director of Public Relations
April 22nd - 2013

The Lethbridge Twinning Society is pleased to host Mr. Susumu Fukuda, Consul General of Japan in Calgary, at the Lethbridge Public Library, (Downstairs Theater Gallery) from 7:00PM – 9:00PM - May 13th 2013.

Consul General Fukuda will present a key lecture entitled: “Japan-Alberta Relations: Past and Present – Towards New Perspectives”.

This insightful lecture from an authority on Canada-Japan relations will also offer an opportunity of hearing from a panel of local individuals. The panel will focus on educational, cultural, social and economic issues relating to Japan.

Consul General Fukuda, who has previously been posted in several regions of Latin America, arrived in Canada in June 2011 to begin his tenure at the Japanese Consulate at Calgary. As a diplomat representing Japan, Mr. Fukuda has made several visits to Lethbridge and area and has participated in celebrating the Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden’s 45th anniversary. In October of last year, Reeve, Lorne Hickey was host to Mr. Fukuda, showing him on a tour of Southern Alberta.
The lecture is free and open to all. Light refreshments will be served.

For further information, please contact:
Carol Kensley – Director of Public Relations
Lethbridge Twinning Society – 403-381-3575

Welcome Risa Kumasaka at New Dynasty Restaurant
February 09, 2013

On February 09, 2013 some members of the Lethbridge Twinning Society gathered at the New Dynasty Restaurant to welcome Risa Kumasaka to Lethbridge for her English Cultural Experience. A wonderful "Chinese Food" dinner was enjoyed and we were pleased to hear Risa's introduction speech which she delivered to us in English! Risa said she really enjoyed the Chinese food and it was interesting to learn that she actually does not lke" Japanese Sushi" that much, but preferes some western type foods, like McDonald's hamburgers and french fries! (Wait until she tastes "Alberta Beef)!

Harold Pereverseff (Past President of the A/JTMA) on October 12, 2012 was awarded a Queen Elizabeth II - Diamond Jubilee Medal
Harold was nominated by Maisey Jacobson, an upstanding, longtime resident of Lethbridge. The Medal was awarded to Harold along with Medals being presented to only 29 other recipients in Southern Alberta. Harold was recognized for his volunteer work with several organizations including, Lions Club International, Victory Church, The Lethbridge Twinning Society, The Alberta/Japan Twinned Municipalities Association and Sister Cities International. Harold's interest and dedication to international relations was highlighted as a qualifier for receiving a Medal. The Medals were awarded at a prestigious ceremony held at the Lethbridge Lodge. MP Jim Hillyer made the presentations.

Read more:

Makoto Sakurada "Thank you Alberta Tour 2012" - September 11, 2012
The Lethbridge Twinning Society is very honored and pleased to sponsor the Makoto Sakurada "Thank you Alberta Tour 2012"

In 2009 Makoto first visited Lethbridge and we were very impressed with his zeal and expertise in musical talents. At that time Makoto visited Airdrie, Calgary, Banff and Lethbridge with performances in each community. In Lethbridge, the performance was at the Yates Theater with excellent attendance who thoroughly Makoto! As we welcome Makoto back, it is with a different purpose and spirit that he is coming. He is coming with the endorsement of his community as their representative and in deed a representative of the Japanese Nationals to say, "Thank you!" Thank you for how we Albertans reached out in our relief efforts, donations and prayers to the people of the nation of Japan following the Great East Japan, Earthquake. Last year, following the tragic events of the March 11, 2011 earth quake and resultant tsunami, Makoto felt compelled to give what he had to his fellow Japanese. Makoto conducted the "Pray for Japan" tour where he performed gratis to his people in the effort of raising their spirits and hope. This was very successful and his song and CD sales for "Pray for Japan" assisted Makoto continuing his tour. The tour took Makoto and his performances throughout Japan even to the most southerly regions of Okinawa.

Makoto will arrive in Alberta on September 10th. He will being with his first performance in Jasper on September 11th visiting many communities in Alberta and eventually coming to Lethbridge on September 22nd. His command performance will be held at the College Drive Community Church – 2710 College Drive South beginning at 7:30PM on September 22nd. Please come and enjoy Makoto. Admission is $10.00 at the door or you may purchase advance tickets by calling 403-381-3575.

**** Follow the Blog of Makoto on his tour! ****

Visiting Japan
In August Adam Mason from the University of Lethbridge traveled to Japan to participate in some musical activities regarding steel drumming and Taiko drumming.

Pictured you see L-R Makoto, Adam, Tei-san (T-AIR Director for Lethbridge) and Yasuko all from Towada City.

They group enjoyed visiting with Adam and are very pleased with Adams visit.

Makoto will be visiting Lethbridge and parts of Alberta in September.

Adam and Makoto plan on getting together again at that time.

Twinning means friendships being established and this is proof positive!

Drawings for the Towada City Shotokukan Horse Museum

On July 9th a package containing over 40 drawings and paintings of horses were sent to the Towada City Shotokukan Horse Museum.

Our Public Relations Director, Carol Kensley was very busy soliciting drawings and paintings from elementary students throughout Lethbridge.

Our Towada City Director, Diane viewed the final product and with that the pictures have begun their journey to Towada City. This is an excellent way of connecting with our twin city and is fun and relatively inexpensive.

We thank the Towada City Shotokukan Horse Museum for their invitation to participate in this fun project.

Thank you to students from Mike Mountain Horse School and to Marilee Terry for her children's pictures as well.

Lethbridge Youth Ambassadors invited to celebrate the Independence Day at the Official Residence of the US Consul General
On July 4, the Lethbridge Youth Ambassadors that will be participating in the 2012 Sister Cities Youth Ambassador Program were invited by the Consulate of the United States in Calgary to celebrate the Independence Day at the Official Residence of the US Consul General.

Along with the Lethbridge Youth Ambassadors there were a host of dignitaries and specially invited guests. These included our Lieutenant Governor of Alberta, His Honour, Col. (Ret'd) the Honourable Donald S. Ethell, Hon. Jason Kenney, Premier Alison Redford and even Dragon's Den's Brett Wilson.... all of whom met and congratulated the Youth Ambassadors!

Consul General of Japan (Calgary) talked with the Youth Ambassadors and congratulated them on their noble endeavors this summer.
Consul General Fukuda expressed that twin relationships are importantly maintained at the "grass roots level" and this is exactly what The Youth Ambassadors will be doing. We know that everything good first starts at the root, and grows from there, we envision our Youth Ambassadors growing to betterment of international relations with all of Lethbridge's twin cities including Towada City, Japan!

Link to this article at the Lethbridge Twinning Society site:

Consulate General of Japan to Harold Pereverseff
June 12, 2012

Please read the Consulate General of Japan letter to Harold Pereverseff about his Alberta/Japan Twinned Municipalities Association (A/JTMA) leadership.

Dear Mr. Pereverseff,

I would like to extend my deepest appreciation for your leadership throughout your time as President of the Alberta/Japan Twinned Municipalities Association. It has no doubt been a challenge over the years to build upon the goals of the A/JTMA; however, the predominant focus on grass-roots exchange has cultivated the organization into further maturity as a stable and expanding association motivated by the furtherance of "people to people" exchange.

Throughout the past 4 years under your direction the Alberta/Japan Twinned Municipalities Association has made some notable improvements and additions, including the formulation of the A/JTMA Constitution, increased membership and exchanges, the creation of the Association's own website, and the institution of the Youth Executive Visionary position. I would like to commend you on your efforts in the name of Japan-Canada relations, and express my hope that in the future you will continue to offer your knowledge and expertise in the pursuit of increased international awareness and friendship between our two countries.

As I explained in my conference organized by the Canadian International Council at Mount Royal University, Japan endured a great tragedy in March of 2011, in the aftermath of which Canada in particular showed its true colours of friendship and humanitarianism by offering abundant assistance to the people of Japan in their time of need. I would like to thank you and all those that made sacrifices in order to assist our country. Japan's path to recovery, to which we are indebted to your nation, is now focussed with greater energy and clarity in creating a vibrant nation.

In closing I would like to congratulate you once more on your years of service as President of the Alberta/Japan Twinned Municipalities Association and reiterate my hope that your presence in the A/JTMA and Japan-Canada relations in general remains as resilient and inspiring as ever.

Susumu Fukuda,
Consul General of Japan at Calgary

Alberta Japan twinning relationships going stronger
The article from September 22, 2011 in Lethbridge Herald:

Lethbridge's Harold Pereverseff was among those greeting Susumu Fukuda, Counsul General of fapan, at the annual conference of the Alberta/Japan Twinned Municipalities Association (A/JTMA) in Hinton.

Pereverseff, of the Lethbridge Twinning Society, will continue his role of president of the А/JTMA for another year.

Establishing Alberta/Japan twinning relations was the vision of former Alberta Premier Peter Lougheed in 1972 when there was formalization of the relationship between the Town of Jasper and Hakone-cho. Since then the number of twinned municipalities in Alberta has grown to 22. The Lethbridge Twinning Society has established relations withTowada City.

The A/JTMA acts as as a conduit to encourage Alberta/Japan twin relations and also supports and enhances existing relations by sharing new ideas and innovative opportunities.

Counsul General Fukuda addressed the delegates and thanked them for their kind and compassionate assistance to fapan following the devastating earthquake and tsunami in March of this year, he also was encouraged by the diligence of the A/JTMA in supporting and encouraging strong twinning relationships.

The A/JTMA is working with municipalities in Alberta to assist in establishing new Japanese twin relations, and to help strengthen existing ones, informal relationships in municipalities can be supported by the A/JTMA and they are encouraged to join the organization.

Further information on the A/JTMA can be found on

Please Welcome: Diane Minamide!

Welcome Diane, our new Director for Towada City, Japan relations.
Diane follows in the footsteps of Jennifer and is excited to begin working in the area of our Towada City relations. Diane has an incredible
background and understands “twinning relations” very well.

Over twenty years ago she became involved with the Hokkai Gakuen (University in Sapporo, Japan) student and faculty exchanges. She has been involved as the activities coordinator for the student exchanges and worked with the faculty exchange professors.

When she left the University of Lethbridge, she continued to be involved in the program as a volunteer, and continues today to maintain friendships that were developed. In 1993 Diane herself participated in a Japanese student exchange and has lived in Japan, Iwate prefecture for 4 years.
Diane says that the exchange program has had a huge impact in her life.

Currently, Diane works at the University of Lethbridge, International Centre for students.
Please contact Diane at:

Lethbridge Twinning Society donation to Towada City
July 07, 2011

T-AIR President Shirayama presents Lethbridge Twinning Society donation to Towada City Mayor Oyamada.

2011 Annual Conference of the Alberta/Japan Twinned Municipalities Association will be held August 19 & 20, 2011 in Hinton, Alberta
Exciting news is Hinton's twin town Wanouchi town Mayor Takayuki Kino will visit Hinton and attend the opening celemony!


Aug. 19th 2011(Fri.)
5:30pm - registration starts
6pm - Cocktail time
7pm - Opening ceremony

Aug. 20th 2011(Sat.)
9am- the Annual meeting
Where: Hinton Golf Club Club House- Opening Ceremony
Holiday Inn Hinton Conference room - AGM

2011 Visit
This year we are expecting another delegation of guests from Japan to visit us in Lacombe from September 17 to 20th. We look forward to being reunited with old friends who make the trip every year. We are certain to make new friendships once again with families from Japan and Lacombe.

Trip to Japan
The city of Lacombe made a very generous donation to help with the costs involved in sending a delegation of Lacombe residents to Rikubetsu Japan in July so that we may celebrate our 25th anniversary as twined communities together. A scholarship contest was held for students of Lacombe and two lucky recipients were awarded funds to help with the cost of their trip. Unfortunately, in light of the disaster in Japan, we have agreed to postpone our trip for a future date.

Origami Night !
2011 News

The Lacombe Friendship Society held an "Origami Night" to raise relief funds for our Japanese friends and families. It was a fun night with many guests ranging from 5 year olds to adults! We raised awareness in the community of our Friendship Society as well as $215 to donate to the Red Cross for Japanese Relief.

2011 Annual A/JTMA Conference: Hinton, Alberta
2011 Annual Conference of the Alberta/Japan Twinned Municipalities Association will be held August 19 & 20, 2011 in Hinton, Alberta

Registration Fee $50.00. Registration Deadline is August 9, 2011

Should you have any questions, please, contact Rhonda West
Phone: 780-865-6002
Fax: 780-865-5706

Please, download the 2011 Annual A/JTMA Conference Registration Form:

Lethbridge to Help Japanese Twin City
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Posted at 5:23:09 PM
Source: Marion Warnica, Country 95 News

LETHBRIDGE: As Japan emerges from the ravages of last week's tsunami and earthquake, Lethbridge is organizing help for its people.

The local Twinning Society is organizing a fundraiser for its partner city of Towada, Japan. Towada is located about a half hour from the coast that received the brunt of the impact, but escaped the disaster without injuries, deaths, or major damage.

Society president Harold Pereverseff says the population is still facing major challenges though, with limited fuel, power, and access to food supplies.

He described his experience talking to a friend in Towada Monday, saying though his family was fine, he seemed frightened.

"They're getting these tremors basically every hour," said Pereverseff. "And as I spoke with him, there was a tremor that happened right while we were speaking. On the Skype [video phone] I could see the curtains swaying. It lasted about 45 seconds."

A member of the Towada Association for International Relations says he's pleased to hear that help is coming from partners in Lethbridge. Teiichi Arao spoke to Country 95 News on Tuesday from Japan. He had this message for his friends here.

"Towada is alive. And the citizens are getting back to daily life. We're very fortunate," he said.

Arao added his group may move some of the funds to the homeless in evacuation camps - a total estimated at 450,000 people.

"They need blankets and food and fuel for the heat systems," he said, his voice sounding strained as he went on to explain it's winter season there, with temperatures dropping to an average -2 C each night.

The need for fuel is a concern in many areas at the moment. Towada is particularly isolated as the nearest major centre, Hachinohe, was heavily devasted by the earthquake and after effects. That coastal community's shipping port has been closed, and major roads into Towada have been washed out. That means food and fuel - supplies of any type - will be more scarce.

Former mayor enthusiastically supports cause

Former mayor Bob Tarleck was closely involved with Twinning Society and even visited the sister city in Japan. He says Lethbridge's history of giving to those in crisis is a favourable foundation for this initiative.

"The Japanese-Canadian community in Lethbridge has done so much this a better community," he said. "And I think this gives the people in Lethbridge once again to stretch their hand in generosity to a people who are in dire need."

He received a letter from a member of Towada's Twinning Society, shortly before the earthquake and has stayed in close contact since. He says though the city has much to be thankful for, concerns are still there.

"Yoko emailed me last night saying they only have half a tank of gas in their car and they're worried about when they'll be able to get some more. So people are concerned about the break down of the whole supply network," he said. "It's going to be a huge adjustment. But the Japanese people have a lot of forbearance. I know that they will come through this."

Lethbridge Twinning Society Report A/JTMA Conference 2010
On July 13 and 14, 2010 - Stony Plain was the setting for the A/JTMA yearly conference. This year were not only experiencing the benefits of the conference, but celebrated in the 30th anniversary of Alberta-Japan Twinned relations. It all began with Jasper and Hakone Town Kanagawa and we have not looked back since then, we continue to advance in our twinning relationships.

We appreciate the conference hosted by the town of Stony Plain and their community, it is a lovely community so fresh and clean with beautiful murals adorning various buildings around town. Please prepare to join us at the conference in Hinton next year!

Barrhead & District Twinning Report A/JTMA Conference 2010
The Barrhead & District Twinning Committee is alive and well and in August 2010 it will be 19 years since the signing of the original twinning agreement with our Twin Town, Tokoro, and Hokkaido, Japan. With many small towns in Hokkaido experiencing down sizing and having residence moving away, Tokoro was amalgamated with Kitami City in 2006. Even though our original agreement was with Tokoro, Kitami City has agreed to continue with the twinning relations. This was very good news to all involved since past and current members work hard to keep up the cultural exchange.

Since that time members have come and gone on the committee, but the main purpose and support has stayed strong. Every year, a delegation arrives from Tokoro to bond with our community. This past March, 5 students, Ryuji Shibaya, Shinji Fujita, Miho Kashiwaya, Minako Kauaguchi & Miki Sudo and their English Teacher Mr.Takahito Narita along with long time friend and translator, Miss Miwa Nakadai, arrived in Barrhead for a week long visit. While here they like to tour the funeral home and visit the Children’s Day Care. They attend school with their home stay families, tour around the community and of course a must is to visit West Edmonton Mall. We always end with a farewell supper, at which members from the committee, local town and county councils and home stay families can attend to say goodbye.

In November 2009, 10 Barrhead residents, 4 students and 6 adults, traveled to Tokoro to spend 10 days learning about our Twin Town and experiencing first hand the Japanese culture and hospitality. One parent summed up the experience this way; “we came as friends and left as family”!

The committee participates locally by entering a float in the annual Barrhead Blue Heron Fair in August and in the past has hosted a Wine & Cheese Poetry evening to promote the twinning exchange and to remind the community that we are twinned with Japan. To further honour and acknowledge our twinning, a beautiful park with dedicated space was developed; it is a western version of a Japanese garden with the traditional three large rocks, a cement lantern, a zig-zag bridge and a dry river bed. We have a plaque to mark the importance of the park and unveiled the park at our 15th Anniversary in August 2006 with several delegates on hand from Tokoro. It was an exciting time and each year the committee adds a few more shrubs and flowers to enhance the park.

August,, 2011 marks the 20th Anniversary of our twinning agreement with Tokoro/Kitami City, Hokkaido and the people there have graciously agreed to host a celebration during Bon Fest for us. The committee is looking forward to celebrating this mile stone and plans are currently underway for a delegation to attend. On behalf of our Twinning Committee, thank you Stony Plain for hosting the Alberta/Japan Twinning Conference in your beautiful community. Congratulations and continued success to all communities who are maintaining their twinning relations with the communities in Japan.

Japan Film Festival 2010
Japan Film Festival 2010
OCTOBER 8th & 9th

Location: Plaza Theatre, 1133 Kensington Road NW , Calgary , AB

See poster and links below for details/synopses:

Oct. 8th @ 6:40pm - Memories of Matsuko

Oct. 8th @ 9:15pm - I Just Didn't Do It

Oct. 9th @ 3:30pm - ALWAYS - Sunset on Third Street

Oct. 9th @ 7:00pm - The Battery - Future in Our Hands

Visit of the President of the Towada Association for International Relations
On August 20, 2010 President of the Towada Association for International Relations (T-AIR) Mr. Haruo Shirayama and Ms. Miura from Towada City visited Canada and Lethbridge! Their short stay was filled with interesting sights and the opportunity of seeing Lethbridge and Southern Alberta for their first time. Lethbridge Twinning Society members welcomed the Towada City delegation with their exceptional hosting attributes. Public Relations Director, Carol took the opportunity of presenting President Shirayama with the "Hands of Friendship" Memorial.

Welcome to Lethbridge – Asuto Arao!
On July 16, 2010 Asuto ARAO arrived in Lethbridge to begin a study session in English at “Flexible Learning Systems”. This was Asuto's second visit to Canada , the first time five years earlier with his his family. Asuto is now 18 years old and a student of Mechanical Engineering at Hachinohe National College of Technology just outside of Towada City, Japan. Asuto was the guest of Harold and Cheryl and their family during his stay in Lethbridge. Many members of the Twinning Society made Asuto feel at home, and provided many activities and “adventures” for him! Bryan took Asuto on a visit to Edmonton. The drive was more than Asuto could imagine! Usually in Japan travel of any length is either done by Shinkansen (Bullet Train) or by air. To travel for 5 hours in a car is virtually unheard of in Japan!

Asuto was most impressed with our cuisine, he tried everything, there were some tastes he did not enjoy, and there were others that he loved! He could have passed on the “Russia Borscht”on the other hand, his favourite (of all things!) Cheryl's lasagne! Asuto received a very special invitation from the Consul General of Japan to visit the Consulate Office in Calgary. Asuto made the visit, and was treated to a wonderful lunch, not Japanese food, rather Italian! Vice Consul, Naoki Sasahara along with Jeremiah Davies were most gracious towards Asuto and left a very memorable impression on this young man.

The studies at the Flexible Learning System were perfect for the short time Asuto had to study. He was studying along with many people from various countries of the world who, like him, were trying their best to learn English and the Canadian Culture. Elma and her staff at Flexible Learning System sure do an excellent job, and we give them a huge thank you for accommodating Asuto.

Before Asuto left for home on August 20, 2010 he had the opportunity of watching a baseball game at Spitz Stadium, driving a go cart, golfing, bowling, camping, bar b ques, a wedding,eating pizza at the pizzeria, seeing movies, getting a Canadian haircut, touring the UofL, interacting with a delegation visiting from China, meeting a long lady visiting from our twin city, Timashevsk, Russia, learning the Lethbridge Transit System and bus routes, shopping, bike riding and roller blading! He even experienced a hail storm! The first time he ever seen hail!

We all agreed that Asuto's visit was too short! He is welcome back anytime!

Jasper/Hakone SisterCity Relationship
Twelve delegates from the Town of Hakone, Kanagawa Prefecture in Japan will visit Jasper from June 29th to July 2nd as part of the Jasper/Hakone SisterCity Relationship. The delegation will be comprised of business people and other individuals. Plans are underway in Jasper to make the delegation's stay in Jasper a very memorable event. The delegation's visit coincides with the Jasper Canada Day celebrations,which include a pancake breakfast hosted by the Mayor and Council, a flag raising ceremony and birthday cake, parade, and fireworks.

2008 AJTMA Conference - Barrhead
Barrhead & District Twinning Committee were pleased to host the 2008 Alberta/Japan Twinned Municipalities Assocation Conference, September 12 & 13, 2008. If you would like information or photos from that conference, please contact Edie at

2008 visit to Japan of A/JTMA president
In November, 2008 A/JTMA President, Harold Pereverseff attended Twin City, Towada City, Japan along with his son, Warren Pereverseff. They met His Worship, Mayor Bob Tarleck in Tokyo and along with Alberta/Japan official, Mr. Kenji Makise they traveled by shinkensan (bullet train) to Towada City. The three day visit was exceptional, visiting with many city officials and seeing many of the cities amenities and sites.

Harold delivered the following speech to a representation of Towada City Chamber of Commerce and City Officials:

Japanese Memorial Garden Dedication - Legislature Grounds, Edmonton, Alberta - October 08, 2008
Saturday, October 11, 2008

EDMONTON -- The 17 Downy Cherry shrubs planted this week on the east grounds of the Alberta Legislature are just babies, each about a foot tall.

But in a few years, the saplings will grow up to 10 times their size, and springtime blooms will fragrance the air, bringing a touch of Hokkaido to Alberta.

The ornamental trees, native to Japan, represent the 17 Alberta municipalities and 15 high schools twinned with Japanese counterparts in the prefecture of Hokkaido.

Centred around a stone lantern, the garden was officially unveiled at a ceremony Wednesday celebrating the 80th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Japan and Canada .

"One of the unique things about Japanese culture is the importance of gardens," said Ken Kowalski, Speaker of the legislative assembly.

"Japanese gardens are designed for a variety of purposes such as providing a tranquil sanctuary that allows individuals to escape from the stresses of daily life, or it could be a place for recreation or a place for celebration."

This part of the legislative grounds, he said, will become a "garden of friendship and co-operation. Just as this garden will grow with attention ... so will our partnership."

"It's an honour because it's going to be part of our history," said Cameron Doerr, a ninth-grader at D.S. MacKenzie junior high who planted a tree with Lethbridge Mayor Bob Tarleck.

Doerr visited Japan last summer as part of his school's exchange program with its twin, Fushimi junior high in Sapporo. He hopes to one day return to Asia as an English teacher.

Besides opening doors for youth, the twinning program also encourages a sharing of culture, language and trade between the two countries, said Harold Pereverseff, president of the Alberta/Japan twinned municipalities association.

"We have 17 trees here now, but as we encourage more municipalities to come onboard, more twinnings, there's lots of room. I'd like to see 34 trees in the next couple of years."

© The Edmonton Journal 2008

Link to the full story by Jennifer Fong, Edmonton Journal:

Delegation from Towada City, Japan
On October 27, 2007 a group of 17 students and 3 chaparones arrived in Lethbridge from Towada City, Japan. The Students were guests of teachers, parents and students from Wilson Middle School. As a continuation of student visitations from Towada City, this delegation was represented the third visit.

This year the weather cooperated and we did not have snow or extreme cold weather. The students were excited to meet their host families and to participate in the activities. The chaparones were busy as well.

The Lethbridge Twinning Society were able to present gifts to each student, and this year we presented warm touques, as we expected the weather to be much colder. We were able to spend time with the students and chaparones and on Halloween evening we met the chaparones and took them out for the evening. We made a stop to "Red Dog Diner" where we enjoyed some fresh hot dogs before embarking on our journey to the "Haunted Mansion" in Stirling, Alberta. A town approximately one half hour away south from Lethbridge. After being scared to death in the "Haunted Mansion" we made our way back to Lethbridge where we had a pizza party dinner and exchanged gifts and became better acquainted.

The Lethbridge Twinning Society appreciates the student visits that have been taking place on a bi-annual basis. We hope to further support these visits in the future.

The Photo album of the visit:

Alberta Twin Town Conference 2007
The Lethbridge Twinning Society is excited to be the host of the 2007 Alberta Twinned Municipalities Convention. On September 14th and 15th of 2007, representatives from Alberta ’s 18 municipalities that enjoy twinning relationships with municipalities in Japan will visit our city. In addition, many representatives from Alberta ’s sister cities in Japan are expected to attend.

During the conference, delegates will discuss the past, present, and future of our twinning relationships. Topics will include current exchange programs, student exchanges, cultural exchanges, and the development of increased economic ties between the cities. Lethbridge, Alberta enjoys a twinning relationship with Towada city in Aomori prefecture Japan .

In addition to meetings, the two-day conference will be packed with local entertainment, social events, and a chance for people from all over both Alberta and Japan to get to know one another. As host, Lethbridge has an excellent opportunity to showcase the city to the nearly 100 delegates. The Lethbridge Twinning Society’s Japanese Taiko drumming group, Kaze no Rhythm, is one of the expected highlights.

Lethbridge Twinning Society Meeting
On September 26, 7:00PM at the
Culver City Room, Lethbridge City Hall we will have our regular Lethbridge Twinning Society meeting. Please come and invite a friend who may be interested in becoming involved with the Society.