Mayor and City Council
Mayor and City Council
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Forest Grove Sister City Nyuzen, Japan

The Town of Nyuzen (pronounced noo zen) is located northwest of Tokyo, against the panoramic view of the North Alps. It spreads southwest-ward along the alluvial fan formed by KurobeRiver and faces ToyamaBay.  This bay is the home of an ancient natural forest which is submerged by the rising water level about ten thousand years ago.

The people of Nyuzen are constantly improving their town which is blessed not only with clear water and beautiful forests, but also with a rich cultural heritage and a population full of energy and love of life.  There are many scenic spots in Nyuzen, ranging from the national monument cedar tree park [SUGISAWA NO SAWASUGI], to many spring water spots [YUSUI-GUN], to cultural with the forest art park [NIZAYAMA GEIJUTSU NO MORI] and the community hall [COSMO HALL].  The fall brings the rice harvest, the spring brings beautiful tulips in many colors, and the summer brings the jumbo Suika watermelons. 

Background of the sister cities exchange program.

What started as an exchange of ideas between two businesses half a world apart – Tektronix/Forest Grove and NEC/Nyuzen, Japan – continues to thrive as a cultural and civic Sister Cities relationship. Since 1988, each community has offered hospitality to delegations as they visit and learn the culture and traditions of both communities.  

What is the Sister Cities Committee?

The Sister Cities Committee of Forest Grove was founded in 1988 to bring about understanding and a sense of mutual interest and purpose among the peoples of Forest Grove and similar cities of foreign nations through the exchange of people, ideas, and things.  In this way, we hope to contribute to world peace and international cooperation.  The Committee is comprised of volunteers from the business community, students, educators, homemakers, and public servants.

History of the Sister Cities Committee.

A working committee of the City of Forest Grove and Chamber of Commerce was formed in 1987 to explore the possibility of developing a sister city relationship. In 1987, the Sister Cities Committee surveyed hundreds of community members to identify existing relationships with communities overseas.  From this survey, relationship with Japanese communities emerged as the most numerous and of greatest interest.  The Committee researched the best sister city candidates in Japan, using criteria that matched city size, demographic characteristics, geography, and economic activities.  Volunteers made numerous presentations to the City Council and the board of the Chamber of Commerce to discuss selection of a sister city for Forest Grove.  Inquiries were made to determine the interest of the City of Nyuzen, Japan, in becoming Forest Grove’s sister city.  In 1988, Forest Grove hosted its first mayoral delegation from Nyuzen.  On December 12, 1988, following a successful visit, the Forest Grove City Council adopted the recommendation of the Committee inviting Nyuzen, in the Toyama province of Japan, to become Forest Grove’s sister city.  Copies of the resolution were sent to the Mayor and Council of the City of Nyuzen, Japan, and the Town Affiliation Association of the U.S., Inc., and the Embassy of Japan.


A member board sets the policies for the Sister Cities Committee of Forest Grove.  These board directors are elected to a two-year term by a vote of the membership at their annual meeting.  The Sister Cities Committee develops and implements program activities to enhance goodwill and deepen mutual respect between the peoples of two great cities and nations.  New committee members are always welcome.

What has been accomplished thus far?

The Committee encourages the people of other nations to learn about American history, culture, and aspirations.  The program is a two-way, encouraging Forest Grove citizens to learn about other nations, utilizing exchanges of information and activities between sister cities in all aspects of contemporary life.  Programs have included letter-writing exchanges between students in Forest Grove and Nyuzen.  Gifts, locally-made products, and community information exchanged with Nyuzen have been placed on display in the Community Auditorium, Chamber of Commerce, and Forest Grove Library. The tulips you see blooming around springtime in Forest Grove are gifts from Nyuzen, which have been planted by the ForestGroveParks and Recreation Department.  In addition, intercultural communication programs featuring Japan and China have been provided to local groups using the outstanding resources of PacificUniversity’s Intercultural Institute and ForestGroveSchool District. Since 1988, the City of Forest Grove has sent a delegation every other year to Nyuzen under the guidance and leadership of the Mayor. Nyuzen reciprocates, sending a delegation every other year opposite of Forest Grove.  Forest Grove School District and Nyuzen also send a student delegation every year.  In addition to official meetings and receptions, the delegates visit important cultural and historical sites. The delegates pay their own visit expenses and are hosted in private homes.  The Committee is always looking for homestay families to sponsor a delegate from Nyuzen – this is definitely once-in-a-lifetime international culture experience.

How can you become involved?

There are lots of opportunities to learn and grow with the Sister Cities Committee.  Volunteers are always needed to serve on the Committee, to help with delegation visits, student exchanges, offer tours of Forest Grove, host a student or adult delegate, offer transportation during delegation visits, and to just learn more about the friendship Forest Grove has with Nyuzen. 

The Sister Cities Committee is a 501C(3) non-profit organization, under the FG Foundation, Inc./Chamber of Commerce.  All donations are tax-deductible.  Even the smallest contributions have a significant impact in helping us ensure the continued success of our sister cities student exchange program!  Donation Form

To learn more about the Sister Cities Committee, or becoming a member of the Sister Cities Committee, please contact Anna Ruggles, City of Forest Grove, 503.992.3235, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or e-mail Sandy Garcia, Sister Cities Committee President at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Upcoming Delegation Visits: 


Host Families Needed for Nyuzen, Japan, Student Delegation Visit

The Sister Cities Committee is seeking local host families for the upcoming Student Delegation Exchange from Nyuzen, Japan, Forest Grove’s Sister City. The delegation consists of 10 students and two adults. The purpose of the student exchange program is to promote international understanding and friendship between Forest Grove's sister city, Nyuzen, Japan.


The student delegation will arrive Friday, October 28 and depart Tuesday, November 1 2016.  The student delegation members attend various planned activities during the day, 8am-5pm, and share mornings and evenings with their host families.


If you are interested in this once-in-a-lifetime rewarding international culture experience and would like to host an international student, please submit a Host Family Form or please call Anna Ruggles, City Recorder, 503.992.3235, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Please submit the form below if interested in hosting a delegate from Nyuzen, Japan:  




2016 Nyuzen Student Delegation Visit

Friday, October 28 through Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Host Family Form

 2016 Nyuzen  Adult Delegation Visit

Thursday, July 14 through Monday, July 18, 2016


Host Families

Delegation Members & Host Families

Fernhill Wetlands Visit

Councilor Victoria Lowe and Sandy Garcia, Sister Cities Committee President

Delegation Members touring Fernhill Wetlands

Traditional Dance

Japanese Folk Dance


2016 Sister Cities 2nd Annual Plant Sale

Thank You for Your Support!

This year's deck bowls were 18" round and contained a mixture of colors!

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 This year's hanging baskets were 12" round and contained a mixture of colors!

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