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The Beginning of Sister Cities

For more than half a century, cities all across the country have been making connection with towns in foreign countries in an international program of “sister” cities. Medford was the first

Posted: Mar 27, 2015 3:03 PM
Updated: Oct 19, 2017 1:38 PM

For more than half a century, cities all across the country have been making connection with towns in foreign countries in an international program of “sister” cities. Medford was the first in Southern Oregon, with Alba, Italy.

However, it was the union 25 years ago between Grants Pass and an industrial city in south central Siberia that may have been the most unlikely, and one of the most energetic. In the winter of 1990, Grants Pass and Josephine County joined the fraternity of sister cities by voting to join with the Siberian soviet city of Rubtsovsk, but it wasn’t an easy sell in the politically conservative community.

After long discussion, county and city leaders agreed to make the connection which stemmed from white water rafting contacts the year before by Josephine County resident Cindy Patterson. Later that summer, in 1990, Mayor Candace Bartow and her husband and daughter, myself and several students made the trip to Rubtsovsk, in the Altai region of Siberia. There, the agreement was signed, and as they say ‘the rest is history.’

One of the symbols around Grants Pass of this enduring friendship is the sister city bear, out in front of the chamber of commerce building. The sister city connection is a project that has gone on for a quarter of a century now and those who are really involved hope it will continue on for at least that much longer.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

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Confirmed Cases: 19097

Reported Deaths: 326
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Multnomah445092
Washington283023
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Umatilla199624
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Malheur67310
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Lane5183
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Benton1556
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Columbia780
Crook431
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Tillamook280
Wallowa191
Curry140
Sherman140
Harney80
Gilliam40
Grant20
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California Coronavirus Cases

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Confirmed Cases: 512175

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CountyConfirmedDeaths
Los Angeles1921774693
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Fresno15083138
Alameda11524189
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Marin499470
Monterey482230
Kings438056
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Sonoma305537
Madera194330
Placer192516
San Luis Obispo178315
Yolo154442
Santa Cruz11524
Butte9417
Napa8888
Sutter7866
San Benito6434
El Dorado6371
Lassen6310
Yuba4854
Shasta3699
Glenn3251
Colusa3234
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Tehama2341
Humboldt2334
Lake1951
Mono1451
Tuolumne1412
Amador1260
Calaveras1251
Del Norte880
Siskiyou730
Mariposa562
Inyo511
Plumas330
Trinity50
Alpine20
Modoc20
Sierra20
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