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Port of Skagit and Mount Vernon Host Sister City Visitors from Japan

Sister city delegates from Matsushige, Japan, Mount Vernon and the Port of Skagit visit Mount Vernon’s river walk on Aug. 27.

Officials of the Port of Skagit and the City of Mount Vernon hosted visitors from Matsushige, Japan, on Aug. 28 to strengthen their sister city relationship and to share information about their respective communities.

Representing Matsushige were Mayor Kempachi Hirose and Mr. Hitoshi Yashinari, manager of Matsushige’s planning and finance division. Mayor Jill Boudreau represented the City of Mount Vernon, while the port was represented by Commissioners Bill Shuler and Steven Omdal. The delegation from Matsushige also included Ms. Maho Yamashita, assistant manager of planning and finance division; Mr. Norihisa Mizoguchi, executive director of the Hyogo Business & Cultural Center; and Mr. Ginn Kitaoka, advisor to the executive director of the Hyogo Business & Cultural Center. Skagit County Commissioner Ken Dahlstedt attended, and the Mount Vernon Chamber of Commerce and the Economic Development Association of Skagit County also were represented.

During the meeting, representatives discussed an exchange of junior high school students, trade opportunities and an extension of the sister city agreement. A gift exchange, lunch and a tour at Skagit Valley Hospital and visits to Mount Vernon’s river walk, the Eaglemont clubhouse and Little Mountain Park rounded out the day.

Matsushige is a city of about 15,000 on the Inland Sea south of Tokyo that shares many characteristics with Mount Vernon and the Skagit Valley. The port is included in the relationship, which was signed last year, because it operates an airport and marina similar to facilities found in Matsushige.

If you are a reporter seeking information about the Port of Skagit, please call Andrew Entrikin, community outreach administrator, at 360-757-0011 or email