Are you interested in taking part as a delegation to Port Hardy’s twin town Numata, Japan? Residents may have that opportunity next year, after having hosted a cultural delegation from the Japanese town.
The organization which hosted the delegation, Port Hardy Twinning Society, finished their itinerary last week, Oct. 22-26, with a variety of activities to showcase the North Island.
Port Hardy councillor John Tidbury noted that back when twinning first started during Mayor Huddlestan’s tenure it was “to create trade, but the scope has changed to more of a cultural event.”
“There’s nine students and four adults, they range from 13-15, they flew in on Monday, and flew to Port Hardy on the Tuesday. We had quite a program for them,” Tidbury added.
The delegate group, which was all girls this year, arrived at Port Hardy’s airport Oct. 23, early in the morning. Then, the delegation visited parts of town like local schools, the municipal hall, and Fort Rupert’s Big House. They also took part in other activities like swimming, touring the Quatse Salmon Stewardship Centre.
Tidbury noted that the delegates also visited the RCMP detachment, where “they looked all through the RCMP building. They did have a look inside one of the cells, and also looked over the vehicles.”
“The students did pumpkin carving,” said Tidbury, which occurred at North Island Mall, early Thursday morning.
While visiting Port Hardy Fire Rescue’s fire station they painted pictures of local scenery. The local firefighters took them on a tour and showed them the local fire truck and the fire hall.
Numata’s Board of Education director Seiichi Takahashi, after Port Hardy local Cody Smedley translated the interview, noted he became a part of twinning last April. Numata Junior High School principal, Takuji Yonekura, also noted he joined the delegation planning last April.
“For the kids it’s such a good experience. They get to try a lot of new things, ” said Takahashi. He noted that he has learned a lot as well during the trip.
Yonekura added that “this connection between Port Hardy and Numata, it’s great to strengthen those ties. In particular, the students can benefit from being more internationally minded having this experience.”
Takahashi had said that when the Port Hardy delegation visits Japan they’ll see a variety of events. “When people come to Numata, they experience living in a homestay. They participate in the Andon Festival, to get a taste of what it’s like to live in Hokkaido.”
“We go and take a look at various famous places. There’s a zoo to go to check out to view the local wildlife and sightseeing spots,” Smedley stated after translating Yonekura.
Leslie Driemel, who is a society member that has gone to Numata several times as well as hosted, helped organize the itinerary. The society has more than 15 years of experience organizing the trip with the sister town.