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Palm Springs to welcome San Miguel de Allende as its new sister city


The Palm Springs Sister City Committee will welcome an official delegation from its first “Twinned City,” San Miguel de Allende to Palm Springs from Feb. 6 through Feb 9.

A signing ceremony will take place February 8, at 10 am at Palm Springs City Hall. The Committee has operated for only 14 months and with the new sister partnership, is determined to welcome its first new sister city, and strive for more opportunities in the future. 

San Miguel de Allende is located in Mexico's central highlands in the state of Guanajuato, about 4 hours from Mexico City.

The delegation is set to arrive on Monday, February 6 for a period of meetings, networking, and tours, officials said.

They are planning to attend restaurants like Wilma & Frieda, Eight4Nine, and Lulu California Bistro, with stops at different Palm Springs landmarks including the Palm Springs Art Museum.

The official signing ceremony at City Hall will follow a farewell dinner at Grand Central Palm Springs. 

Jeffery Bernstein, who is now a councilmember but was not at the time, presented the sister city committee idea to the Palm Springs City Council in 2019, just before the COVID outbreak. 

Last year, Bernstein created a volunteer effort with other local business and community leaders and joined Sister Cities International, the overarching body for such partnerships.

In June, News Channel 3's Jake Ingrassia reported that the city was considering a sister city agreement with San Miguel de Allende. The city council approved that agreement the next month.

The Sister City Committee hopes to ensure a world of peace through goodwill, compassion, and helping other cultures through promoting and servicing relationships between the City of Palm Springs and other similar government units in foreign countries.

At the core of these programs is a signed agreement from the mayors of each Sister City in order to confirm their partnership. They then agree to send and receive delegations revolving around political, business, cultural and technical affairs to promote cross-cultural understanding, and possible business opportunities. The effort of a Sister City is created by a committee of volunteers. 

Other cities considered for Palm Springs' sister city program included Victoria, British Columbia, Canada and Aix en Provence, France. Previously, Palm Springs had a sister city partnership with Victoria, B.C. Canada. in the 1960s and 1970s, as well as Puerto Vallarta Mexico, and Nikko, Japan.

When the council approved the agreement with San Miguel de Allende, then-Mayor, now current Councilmember Lisa Middleton mentioned that she was hoping to make a push to add Victoria, BC, Canada to the program.

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