Published: Wednesday, 21 August 2013
Mike Fulton

Washington State's Olympia marina and another in Japan's Hyogo Prefecture have agreed to share their operational knowledge.

These two cities have agreed to link up their marinas in a unique sister-marina agreement. Wahsington State's The Olympian reported that some 100 people attended a signing ceremony for officials from Swantown Marina & Boatworks in Olympia and the Shin Nishinomiya Yacht Harbor of Hyogo Prefecture.

First Twin Cities Now Twin MarinasOlympia's Swantown Marina & Boatworks

"Sister towns in different countries are common but this sister-marina agreement is the first of its kind," said Bill McGregor, commissioner of the Port of Olympia. "It's an exciting time to do this. We want to strengthen our relationship with the rest of the world, and this is one way to do it,” he told the newspaper.

The event attracted high-ranking state and local officials from Washington as well as Hyogo's Governor Toshizo Ido. Toshikazu Hayashi, president of the Shin Nishinomiya Yacht Club, was also in present.

Besides cultural exchanges between these marinas, the agreement states that they will exchange information on the development of their operations and also share knowledge on their environmental stewardship.

First Twin Cities Now Twin Marinas 1Shin Nishinomiya Yach Harbor in Hyogo Prefcture

Ido hopes the agreement will encourage yacht owners from both marinas to interact. Yacht owners are successful people, and Ido thinks the agreement could produce some unforeseen and unexpected benefits.

The signing of the marina agreement is one of several events being held recently in Washington, as that state and Hyogo Prefecture celebrate their 50th anniversary as sister states.