Korean city gets local link

The newly-formed Snoqualmie Sister Cities Association is already connecting with a community an ocean away.

The Snoqualmie City Council recently named the city of Gan Jin, South Korea, as a Friendship City.

Friendship City status is a “baby step” toward sister city status, Sister City Association board member Joan Pliego said.

Gan Jin is where Mun Young Hoon, the visiting Korean director of public administration and home affairs, hails from. It is also the home of a dozen ninth-grade students who will be visiting Snoqualmie for six weeks, starting Jan. 9.

While not essential for the students’ visit, the official Friendship City status helps formalize relations between the two cities.

“We’re taking it one step at a time,” Pliego said.

The official process for making Gan Jin a Snoqualmie Sister City likely won’t begin until after the Korean students arrive. To create a sister city, the association will need to make a recommendation to the city council.

Snoqualmie Mayor Matt Larson has described the association’s efforts as a way for the city to “learn from and embrace another culture in a more personal way.”

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