Lynnwood city officials held a virtual ceremony last week to honor the city’s new friendship city — Chilpancingo, located in Mexico.
Last Monday, Mayor Nicola Smith and Lynnwood City Councilmember Julieta Altamirano-Crosby participated in a virtual Friendship City Ceremony with elected officials from the the state of Guerrero, Mexico including Gov. Hector Astudillo Flores and Chilpancingo Council Member Ana Lilia Leyva Sotelo. A proclamation was also issued to formalize the relationship.
“Lynnwood is a diverse city,” Smith said. “In Lynnwood, Latinx community members account for approximately 15% of our population, and we are so glad that they have chosen to call Lynnwood home.”
With this Friendship City relationship, Smith said she hopes to create an open exchange of information, economics, arts, tourism and more with Chilpancingo.
Friendship City relationships are similar to the Sister City program, but have a more limited scope. Additionally, friendship cities relationships are a mayor-to-mayor agreements whereas Sister City relationships require the city council’s approval. Like the Sister City program, Friendship City relationships typically involve participating in annual exchanges.
In 2016, Lynnwood entered into a Sister City agreement with Damyang, South Korea. Since, the program has sponsored student exchanges involving high school students from Damyang visiting Lynnwood. In 2019, Lynnwood High School students traveled to South Korea.
Additionally, Chilpancingo is Altamirano-Crosby’s hometown. She traveled to Mexico as a representative for the city during the ceremony.
“This Friendship City relationship promotes cooperation between both cities, and also builds and makes known our multicultural legacy,” Altamirano-Crosby said. “This relationship will be a first approach to share, learn and value our cultural differences.”
–By Cody Sexton