Renewing ties with our Nordic neighbors

January 26, 2010

Issaquah visitor Joan Probala returns from  Norway with hopes to revive sister-city bond

Longtime Issaquah resident Joan Probala (right) addresses dignitaries during a November trip to Sunndal, Norway, a sister city to Issaquah. Contributed by Joan ProbAla

Longtime Issaquah resident Joan Probala traveled to Sunndal, Norway, in November to discuss the dormant sister-city relationship between Issaquah and the Norwegian town.

Dignitaries from both cities established the relationship in 1991, although the connection has waned in recent years. In the meantime, Issaquah and Chefchaouen, Morocco, started a sister-city relationship in 2007.

Issaquah City Council members hope to revive and strengthen the relationship between the city and Sunndal. Probala, a member of the city Sister Cities Commission, met with Sunndal leaders, sampled reindeer and talked about how to strengthen the bond between Issaquah and the small, quaint city on a fjord.

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Apply to serve city as a board member or commissioner

January 12, 2010

Help shape the way Issaquah develops, advise officials about growth and even increase public art throughout the city. Read more

Apply to serve city as a board member or commissioner

January 9, 2010

NEW — 6 a.m. Jan. 9, 2010

Help shape the way Issaquah develops, advise officials about growth and even increase public art throughout the city.

City leaders seek members for 12 city boards and commissions. Not all applicants must be Issaquah residents. Officials need regular and alternate members. Alternate members serve in the absence of regular members.

Pick up application forms at the City Clerk’s Office on the second floor at City Hall, 130 E. Sunset Way. Find the form here.

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Issaquah traveler hopes to thaw Sunndal sister city relationship

November 10, 2009


Joan Probala

Joan Probala

The dormant relationship between Issaquah and Sunndal, Norway — the first sister city partnership forged by Issaquah leaders — could be rekindled next week when longtime Issaquah resident Joan Probala travels to the far-flung corner of Scandinavia.

Issaquah and Sunndal became sister cities in 1991, but the relationship faded and the pact failed to produce more than a handful of visits between the cities’ residents. In the meantime, Issaquah established a second sister city relationship with Chefchaouen, Morocco, in early 2007.

Probala, a member of the Issaquah Sister Cities Commission, hopes her trip to Norway can reinvigorate the partnership with Sunndal. She departed Nov. 9 for Norway and the distant sister city. She plans to spend three weeks in Norway, where her daughter lives. The trip to Sunndal will be a high-profile side trip. Read more

Gambling on Charity

September 1, 2009

The nine remaining participants get ready to shuffle up and deal at the final table in the Texas Hold ‘Em Poker Fundraiser Aug. 26 at the Lake Sammamish Elks Lodge. The event, hosted by the Issaquah Sister Cities Commission and the American Moroccan International Exchange, raised $1,100 to bring two artists from Issaquah’s sister city Chefchaouen, Morocco, to Issaquah during Salmon Days. Christopher Wright won, Joe Podersek came in second, Dallas Cross in third, Sharyn Solum in fourth and Dave Neiderkrome in fifth. By Tina Eggers

The nine remaining participants get ready to shuffle up and deal at the final table in the Texas Hold ‘Em Poker Fundraiser Aug. 26 at the Lake Sammamish Elks Lodge. The event, hosted by the Issaquah Sister Cities Commission and the American Moroccan International Exchange, raised $1,100 to bring two artists from Issaquah’s sister city Chefchaouen, Morocco, to Issaquah during Salmon Days. Christopher Wright won, Joe Podersek came in second, Dallas Cross in third, Sharyn Solum in fourth and Dave Neiderkrome in fifth. By Tina Eggers

Play poker, help get sister city artists here

August 18, 2009

Play poker for a good cause at the Texas Hold ‘em Poker fundraiser Aug. 26 at the Lake Sammamish Elks Lodge, 765 Rainier Blvd. N. Read more

Moroccan exchange students get firsthand look at America

August 11, 2009

Meryem Riane (left) and Loubna Gourari visit the Blue Door at City Hall. The door was donated by their hometown, Issaquah’s sister city, Chefchaouen, Morocco. The  girls visited as part of an exchange program.By Erin Kim

Meryem Riane (left) and Loubna Gourari visit the Blue Door at City Hall. The door was donated by their hometown, Issaquah’s sister city, Chefchaouen, Morocco. The girls visited as part of an exchange program.By Erin Kim

On their first visit to America, students Meryem Riane, 19, and Loubna Gourari, 18, traveled to Issaquah from its Moroccan sister city, Chefchaouen.

Long before the students made a two-week trip to Issaquah, Issaquah residents and officials took steps to cement the relationship between the city and Chefchaouen.

In 2006, 12-year-old Iman Belali wanted to create a better understanding between America and Morocco, her home country. Iman convinced her parents to start the nonprofit organization, the American Moroccan International Exchange program.

Issaquah residents then traveled to Morocco through AMIE.

After the trip’s success, the City Council established a sister-city relationship with Chefchaouen as an outgrowth of Iman’s request. Read more

Match wits, raise money at Trivia Night on Monday

July 26, 2009

NEW — 6 a.m. July 26, 2009

Issaquah officials will host a second popular Trivia Night to help bring two artists from Chefchaouen, Morocco, during the Salmon Days Festival.

Chefchaouen is a sister city of Issaquah. Trivia Night will be hosted at the Issaquah Brewhouse by the city Sister Cities Commission and the American Moroccan International Exchange. The event will begin at 7 p.m. July 27 at the brewhouse, 35 W. Sunset Way.

Proceeds will be used to help the artists travel to Issaquah for the festival, Oct. 3-4. There is no preregistration for the event, and the brewhouse will remain open during Trivia Night.

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Trivia event Monday to raise money for Moroccan visit during Salmon Days

June 7, 2009

NEW — 6 a.m. June 7, 2009

Trivia Night, sponsored by the Issaquah Sister Cities Commission, will be held at 7 p.m. Monday at the Issaquah Brewhouse, 35 W. Sunset Way.

Proceeds from Trivia Night will be used to help bring two artists from Issaquah’s sister city, Chefchaouen, Morocco, to share their art and culture with the community during Issaquah Salmon Days on Oct. 3-4.

There is no preregistration for the event. Participants are urged to come early to ensure that they can secure a table. The brewhouse will be open during its normal operating hours.

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See Moroccan art on display at community center

May 18, 2009

NEW — 6 a.m. May 18, 2009

Fifth-graders at Clark Elementary School received a welcomed surprise last month: special gifts from students in Issaquah’s sister city of Chefchaouen, Morocco.

In March, the Clark students created friendship journals that were delivered to a group of Chefchaouen students. In return, the Chefchaouen students created their own artwork to send back to Issaquah as a surprise.

The artistic gifts, which include paintings, drawings and even a weaving, are on display through the end of the month in the main lobby of the Issaquah Community Center, 301 Rainer Blvd. S.

chefchaouen-arts-20090514

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