Midland City Hall - 333 W. Ellsworth St. Midland, MI 48640 Phone: 989-837-3300
Sister City Relationship - Handa, Japan
The City of Midland maintains a sister city relationship with the City of Handa, Japan. This relationship was formed in 1981, and includes a thriving
student exchange program.
Click here for more on the 2014 student exchange program.
The sister city relationship between Handa and
Midland began when The Dow Chemical Company considered a plan to
locate a manufacturing facility in the city of Handa. The mayor of Handa at that time
was interested in knowing what kind of neighbor Dow would be to his
community. After a visit to Midland, Handa became our community's sister city, a relationship that continues to this day.
Delegations from both Handa and Midland have
visited each other's countries on several occasions to learn more
about each's culture and industry. Over the years, our communities have
exchanged ideas and gifts to show our appreciation for one another's
cultural differences and similarities. A gift for our 10th
anniversary as sister cities - the beautiful Japanese Stone Lantern garden
located behind the Grace A. Dow Memorial
Library - was constructed by our Handa friends. Midland reciprocated
by sending a bronze statue signifying the importance of family.
Most recently, in October 2011, a delegation from Handa
City, including Mayor Sumio Sakakibara, visited Midland to celebrate the
30th anniversary of our two communities' friendship. Handa City presented
a beautiful gift of framed artwork to the citizens of Midland that
is proudly displayed at the Grace A. Dow Memorial Library.
The City of Midland reciprocated with a hand-crafted quilt made by
the Amish, a small population in the
Great Lakes Bay Region who live a quiet, simple lifestyle as an expression of their
The sister city relationship continues to
be a strong example of cross-cultural appreciation and exchange.
For more details, call 989-837-3307.
Handa, Japan Mayor Sumio Sakakibara meets former mayor R. Drummond Black and present mayor Maureen Donker; Japanese Garden at Library; Handa mayor shares musical talent with Midland friends
Location: Handa is located in the center of the Chita
Peninsula, which lies south of Nagoya and faces Kinuura Bay.
Population: Nearly 120,000
Industries: Production plants for sake, vinegar, soy sauce, soy
bean paste and cotton. Handa's Kinuura Port has attracted larger industries such
as iron and steel, machinery, metals, ceramics and chemicals.
Agriculture: Dairy farming and flower, vegetable and rice farms
Handa's Government: The current mayor of Handa is