Ski-To-Sea 2015 Was Fantastic!

May 25, 2015- The Bellingham Sister Cities Association wrapped up another fun and exciting Ski to Sea weekend today with some of our host families, athletes, and board members attending the Beavers Tree Service annual party, hosted by Brian and Sandra Boatman. It was the perfect ending to a fantastic long weekend of building friendships, racing, and community participation.

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The BSCA Ski to Sea Committee would like to thank: Mr. Im, Mr. Kim and Mrs. Kim from Cheongju, S. Korea; Eriko Kondo and Kazuki Wada from Tateyama, Japan; Bavuugarid Batbaatar, Erdenedelger Munkhjargal, Batjargal Mishka, Tuvshintugs Chuluunbat, and Adilbish Badmaanyambuu from Tsetserleg, Mongolia; Whatcom Events and Ski to Sea for their generous support of the Sister Cities Ambassadors team; President Teresa Van Haalen and all of our board members and general members that have shown up and supported the team throughout the year and the Ski to Sea weekend;  Ross and Sharon Grier, in conjunction with the Japanese Facebook Community, for hosting a welcome party for our friends from Tateyama; Mayor Kelli Linville and Sophia Blamey for so warmly welcoming our athletes and guests Friday morning at City Hall; Boundary Bay Brewery for helping to make our visitors’ experience at the Block Party even better; the Blossomtime Parade organizers for their support of the BSCA; Setsuko and Patrick Buckley and their family for hosting our athletes and parade attendees for lunch and the pre-race team meeting on Saturday; Christine Gary for getting Mr. Im up the mountain on Sunday morning and her help and support throughout the year; Gabe Starbuck, Kyle Nelson, and Max Baker for being a part of the Sister Cities Ambassadors team, their attendance at our various functions, and Gabe’s awesome abilities as captain of the team; Jack’s Bicycle Center for their generous donation of the use of two mountain bikes for our athletes to use in the race; Hammer Nutrition for their generous discount on the order for our athletes; Bay Engraving for their generosity and beautiful craftsmanship of plaques and name plates; Brian and Sandra Boatman for their assistance in finding local athletes throughout the years and for hosting us at their annual party this year; Mike and Akiko Anderson, Brad and Sandra Hubbard, Kelly Krieger, Greg Sundberg, Bolor and Eric Smith, and Karen and Tom Stuen for their wonderful hosting of our athletes and honored guests over the last week; Jeremy and Junko Ferrera for their support and accompaniment of our international friends on various outings in the community; and Ross Grier for his spearheading the Blossomtime Parade float portion of the weekend, for his hard work throughout the days, weeks, and months leading up to the Ski to Sea weekend, and for his tireless efforts on behalf of world peace.

We are looking forward to a grand celebration of the 105th anniversary of the running of the Mount Baker Marathon during the 2016 Ski to Sea race. We will be sending out information on our plans for this within the next couple of months and we would love to have you be a part of our mission of spreading world peace, one friendship (and relay race) at a time.

If you are interested in being a part of our Ski to Sea Committee, becoming a BSCA member, hosting a guest from one of our sister cities, or have any questions, please feel free to email me at secretary@bsca.org.

Melisa Nelson

BSCA Ski to Sea Coordinator

BSCA Advisory Board Secretary

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Bellingham Mayor Kelli Linville Welcomes BSCA Ski-To-Sea Team

Friday, May 22, 2015- Bellingham, Washington’s Mayor, Kelli Linville, welcomed international visitors to City Hall today with the presentation of honorary citizenship certificates and warm words of greeting. The visitors are athletes and delegates from three of Bellingham’ s sister cities, here for the Ski to Sea race on Sunday, May 24. The athletes are; Eriko Kondo and Kazuki Wada of Tateyama, Japan; Bavuugarid Batbaatar from Tsetserleg, Mongolia; and Mr. Kim In-Hweon and Mr. Im Chan-Gyu from Cheongju, South Korea. In addition, Mrs. Kim Bo-Kyung from Cheongju and Mr. Erdenedelger Munkhjargal and Mr. Adilbish Badmaanyambuu from Mongolia were in attendance as honored guests. Also at the gathering this morning with our international friends were their host families, four Bellingham Sister Cities Association board members, BSCA member Jeremy Ferrera, and Malcolm Oliver, Director of Multicultural and Support Services at Bellingham Technical College.

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The BSCA believes that sports and the arts are fantastic ways to help spread world peace, and are excited to be participating in the 2015 Ski to Sea race. Already this year, Bellingham residents went to Tateyama, Japan in January for the Wakashio Marathon, and in just a couple of months, residents of Tateyama will be coming here for the Bellingham Bay Marathon in September. United We Dance, a local dance company from Bellingham, will be going to Japan this summer to spend a week in Tateyama and a week in Tokyo. Sports and the arts are just a few of the ways people can learn about new cultures while participating in something that they love and enjoy doing. The bonds between new friends that are created by these events last for many years and are some of the best kind of memories one can make.

Please consider joining the BSCA as either a corporate, and business, a family, or an individual member. In doing so, you are helping to spread world peace, one friendship at a time. You can sign up here on the website or see our membership chair, Setsuko Buckley, at any of our events.

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BSCA Ski-to-Sea Team Kick-Off Dinner

On Thursday night, Friday May 21, the Bellingham Sister Cities Association International Ski-to-Sea team met at “Tatdaddy’s” home to get to know one another and to meet many of the Bellingham Sister Cities Board.

Joining Gabe Starbuck, Kyle Nelson and Max Baker from Bellingham are Bavuugarid Batbaatar the Head of the Governor’s office for Arkhangai Province in Mongolia, Batjargal Mishka, Lieutenant Governor of Arkhangai Province, Erdenedelger Munkhjargal, the Chairman of Citizen’s Representative Khural of Erdenebulgan soum; and Tuvshintugs Chuluunbat, another member of the Tsetserleg City Council.  From Cheongju, Korea  we have Mr. Im Chan-Gyu, the Director of the Energy Division, Mr. Kim In-Hweon, Director of the International Division, and Mrs. Kim Bo-Kyung a well-respected and beloved friend of the BSCA from the Mayors office.  From Tateyama, Japan we have Eriko Kond, a medical professional and Kazuki Wada who is with the Japanese Navy.

Bellingham Sister Cities is excited to be fielding this team, and to have such a great international team!  Below are a few pictures of the evening.

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Meet the BSCA Sister Cities Ambassadors Ski to Sea Team!

Today’s installment of “Meet the BSCA Team” introduces you to our Ski to Sea racers from Bellingham and Seattle, Washington. Team Captain Gabe Starbuck, Kyle Nelson, and Maxwell Baker are looking forward to be participating in this year’s Ski to Sea on the BSCA Sister Cities Ambassador’s team on Sunday, May 24. This is the final installment of “Meet the BSCA Team.”

BH Gabe StarbuckGabe Starbuck has participated in many Ski to Sea races, and we are fortunate to have him as the team captain this year. Gabe graduated from WWU and has a MS and an MBA. He is married and works as a project manager for an educational company. He is well known in our local paddling community and spends a lot of time outdoors on bikes, in canoes, and any other way he can get out there.

BH Kyle NelsonKyle Nelson came to Bellingham 14 years ago to attend WWU and has stayed ever since, like many Hamsters do. Kyle is also married and he works for the City of Bellingham. Kyle is also a huge outdoor person and has raced in Ski to Sea seven times previously, but this year is a new leg for him. He and Gabe will be in the canoe going down the Nooksack in the canoe leg of the race. Kyle has traveled the world, with a stop in Japan, and Kyle believes, “when you meet individuals from another culture and see their goals/families/desires/fears/etc. are not a whole lot different than your won, it makes it hard to have hate for the people of that culture.” 

BH Maxwell BakerMax Baker is currently a graduate student at the University of Washington in Seattle pursuing a Master’s in Urban Planning. He is originally from southeastern Michigan and came to the PNW about three years ago. This is Max’s first Ski to Sea and he is excited to be participating as the kayak leg racer for the Ambassadors. Max enjoys Bellingham’s proximity to the mountains, Puget Sound, Canada, and local farms, and believes this makes it a truly unique city.

The Bellingham Sister Cities Association is very lucky to have such fantastic local support. We would never have found Gabe and Kyle if we didn’t have such a great friend in Brian Boatman, of Beavers Tree Service. Max came to us through friends of board member and Tateyama City Chair Ross Grier. We thank all of you who support our mission of world peace, one friendship and experience at a time. 

In the next few days there will be posts about; the meeting at City Hall with Mayor Kelli and our international visitors; the Blossomtime Parade on Saturday; the race itself on Sunday; and our finish line victory party. Stay tuned for more fabulous pictures of the awesome weekend that is Ski to Sea weekend!

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Meet the BSCA Sister Cities Ambassadors Ski to Sea Team!

Today’s installment of “Meet the BSCA Team” introduces you to our Ski to Sea racer from Tsetserleg, Mongolia. We hear he is super excited to be participating in this year’s Ski to Sea race on May 24.

BavuugaridBavuugarid Batbaatar is 29, single, and the Head of the Governor’s office for Arkhangai Province in Mongolia and has his Master’s Degree in Business Administration. Here’s your geography lesson for the day; Bellingham’s sister city, Tsetserleg, is a district in Arkhangai Province.Tsetserleg has quite the biking community going and so the committee decided that he would be perfect for the cross-country leg of the Ski to Sea race.

MongoliansAlong with Bavuugarid, we have three other visitors from Mongolia in Bellingham; Batjargal Mishka, Lieutenant Governor of Arkhangai Province who raced as our road biker last year; Erdenedelger Munkhjargal, the Chairman of Citizen’s Representative Khural of Erdenebulgan soum; and Tuvshintugs Chuluunbat, another member of the Tsetserleg City Council. The picture is of Adilbish, BSCA Board Member Bolor Smith’s uncle, Erdenedelger, and Bavuugarid.

The BSCA would like to thank Jack’s Bicycle Center for donating bikes for the use of our Mountain Bike and Cross-Country Bike race leg athletes, who will be coming from Tsetserleg, Mongolia and Cheongju, South Korea. You will be meeting the rest of our team, Gabe Starbuck, Kyle Nelson, and Max Baker, in the next installment here on the BSCA website and our social media pages. 

Call Jack's Bicycle Center!

Call Jack’s Bicycle Center!

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Meet the BSCA Sister Cities Ambassadors Ski to Sea Team!

Today’s installment of “Meet the BSCA Team” introduces you to our Ski to Sea racers from Cheongju, South Korea. Mr. Im Chan-Gyu, our team’s Trail runner, and Mr. Kim In-Hweon, our Mountain Bike rider, are both excited to be participating in this year’s Ski to Sea race on May 24.

Im Chan GyuMr. Im Chan-Gyu is a city employee in Cheongju, as the Director of the Energy Division. He is married with one child and was originally very excited about snowboarding in the Ski to Sea race and he is now excited about the chance to run his first trail race. Mr. Im is looking forward to meeting with Mayor Linville, and to making connections here in our city. Mr. Im speaks Korean and Japanese, and will be staying with a local family that speaks Japanese.

Kim In HwanMr. Kim In-Hweon is also an employee of the city, as the Director of the International Division, which is a very important position. Besides Korean, Mr. Kim speaks fluent Chinese. He will be racing in the final leg of the race this year, as our Mountain Bike leg athlete. Mr. Kim is married and has two children. He is looking forward to meeting Mayor Linville, as well as the BSCA board and members of the association. Mr. Kim will be staying with our Cheongju City Chair for the BSCA. Mr. Kim will be using a bike provided by Jack’s Bicycle Center in the Ski to Sea race. Jack’s is located at 1907 Iowa Street in Bellingham, WA, and has an assortment of bikes and accessories for all of your biking needs!

Kim Bo KyungMrs. Kim Bo-Kyung is a well-respected and beloved friend of the BSCA. She has been traveling between Cheongju and Bellingham for many years, bringing school children to Western Washington University for their summer program, as well as bringing athletes here for our Ski to Sea race. Mrs. Kim is married with two children and is also an employee of the city of Cheongju. She is invaluable in providing translation assistance for the Korean athletes and visitors and we look forward to seeing her again!

The BSCA would like to thank Jack’s Bicycle Center for donating bikes for the use of our Mountain Bike and Cross-Country Bike race leg athletes, who will be coming from Tsetserleg, Mongolia and Cheongju, South Korea. You will be meeting our athlete from Tsetserleg, Bavuugarid Batbaatar, as well as the rest of our team, in the coming days here on the BSCA website and our social media pages. 

Call Jack's Bicycle Center!

Call Jack’s Bicycle Center!

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Meet the BSCA Sister Cities Ambassadors Ski to Sea Team!

Today’s installment of “Meet the BSCA Team” introduces you to our Ski to Sea racers from Tateyama, Japan. Eriko Kondo, our team’s road runner, and Kazuki Wada, our road biker, are both excited to be participating in this year’s Ski to Sea race on May 24.
eriko kondo japan road runner photo

Eriko Kondo, Japanese Road Runner

Prior to coming this month for the Ski to Sea race, Eriko visited Bellingham two years ago as a runner in the Bellingham Bay Marathon. In Tateyama, Eriko works in a medical office, enjoys beading and running, is married and has a son.

 
Kazuki Wada, Japanese Road Biker

Kazuki Wada, Japanese Road Biker

Kazuki Wada is coming to Bellingham for the first time. Currently, Kazuki is in the Japanese Navy. He is single and his family include his parents and his brother and sister. Kazuki has mentioned that while he is here he is interested in visiting a bike shop. Lucky for Kazuki, Bellingham is the perfect city to do that in. One of our best shops is Jack’s Bicycle Center at 1907 Iowa Street in Bellingham. Jack’s is the perfect place for him to visit and view a large selection of bikes and bike accessories in a beautifully remodeled store.

Jacks-Bike-Sign-

Support Jack’s! (360) 733-1955

The BSCA would like to thank Jack’s Bicycle Center for donating bikes for the use of our Mountain Bike and Cross-Country Bike race leg athletes, who will be coming from Tsetserleg, Mongolia and Cheongju, South Korea. You will be meeting those athletes, as well as the rest of our team, in the coming days here on the BSCA website and our social media pages.

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Britt Setter and United We Dance’s Upcoming Trip to Tateyama

UWD 2015 with teachersUnited We Dance is taking thirteen students ranging in age from 14-18 and three dance instructors from The Dance Studio to Tateyama, Japan this July. We are so excited for our second cultural exchange to Tateyama! We are fortunate enough to be staying with host families and hope to fully immerse our students and teachers in the Japanese culture and experience daily life in Tateyama. We are so appreciative of the additional support for our trip provided by the Bellingham Sister Cities Association through their Peace Grant Award.

United We DanceUWD has multiple performances planned at schools throughout the community. We will be performing ballet, pointe, jazz, tap, lyrical, hip hop and musical theater pieces. The dancers will be able to attend at least a partial day of school with a Tateyama student and are thrilled to be putting on a performance with a local dance group from Tateyama. We have a couple of days planned to site see with our host families and there will be a banquet to bring all of the families together.

UWD 01 TateyamaWe are overjoyed to be able to spend time with the welcoming families of our sister city. This is very exciting for many of our dancers, some of whom have never set foot outside of North America. We love dance and hope we can share our passion with the community of Tateyama, but we also are very much looking forward to the relationships that will be created from sharing and learning from each other.

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President Teresa Van Haalen Extends An Invitation To The BSCA Annual Dinner

PrintWell we are only a week away and we have to have our confirmed number of dinners in by 2:00 Tuesday, April 7 and as this years President for Bellingham Sister Cities Association I wanted to again extend a personal invitation to our 2015 Bellingham Sister Cities Association General Membership Meeting.

If you have not already registered, I urge you to do so! Remember, it is a free dinner for members and if you bring your ticket that you get when you register(ed) you are eligible for the iPad drawing at the end of the night!

You Can RSVP and Register Here

Mark your Calendars for April 14, 2015 and join the BSCA Board & Membership for the annual report on 2014 events and plans for 2015 at the Bellingham Technical College Main Cafeteria from 6:00 PM to 8:30 PM.

Our annual meeting includes a Lasagna dinner prepared by Bellingham Technical College (at no cost to current BSCA Members), and just $25.00 for others. (Hint, you can join for $25.00!)

20150111_122254During 2014 the Bellingham Sister Cities Association was very active with activities including Ski-to-Sea, Wakashio Marathon, Bellingham Bay Marathon, Mongolian New Years, the Pacific Rim Challenge, and so much more. We will have speakers reporting on these events as well as what is planned for 2015 which is already off to a great start!

Program:

Welcome – Teresa Van Haalen, President, Bellingham Sister Cities Association
Bellingham Mayor Kelli Linville
Consul In Charge of Sister City Affairs of Japan In Seattle, Naoki Hayasaka and Assistant Lynn Miyauchi
Skagit & Whatcom Congressional Outreach for Susan DelBene, Karlee Detherage
President, Finlandia Foundation, Suomi Chapter, Asko Hamalainen
City Reports
Pacific Rim Challenge Report
Ski-to-Sea Report
Wakashio & Bellingham Bay Marathon Exchange Report
Mongolian New Years & Mongolian Week Report
Bellingham-Vaasa Education Project Report
Peace Grant Report
Sponsorship Program Introduction & Report
iPad Drawing

I hope to see you there!

All the best,
Teresa van Haalen, President
Bellingham Sister Cities Association
(360) 201-2921

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Next Masters of Japanese Cinema film — Early Summer

BDDefinition-EarlySummer-5-1080-300x168The next Masters of Japanese Cinema film will be Ozu Yasujiro’s wonderful 1951 film Early Summer.  It screens at Pickford Film Center (1318 Bay Street) at 6:30pm on Tuesday, April 7th.  Further details can be found here: http://www.pickfordfilmcenter.org/programs/pickford/early-summer/

Early Summer 02Ozu probably doesn’t need much introduction (at least for readers of these emails), but it can be hard for the casual viewer to keep all the films straight, particularly for those with seasonal titles (Late Spring, Early Spring, Late Autumn, etc.).  Complicating this is the fact that many of his postwar films deal with a similar story situation: the potential marriage of a daughter in the family.  Each film plays out differently; it’s almost as if Ozu was conducting story experiments where he would change different variables from film to film to see what the results would be.  Each film also presents us with different models for effects of choices around marriages and how marriages play out by presenting multiple options in the same film.  Taken all together, these films make for one of the most remarkable bodies of work ever produced (and that’s not even counting all of Ozu’s other films).

Yasujiro-OzuMore importantly, each film is engaging on its own terms.  Early Summer is one of my favorites.  It features many actors who appear repeatedly in Ozu’s postwar films: Hara Setsuko in the lead role, as well as Ryu Chishu, Sugimura Haruko, and Miyake Kuniko, among others.  Hara and Sugimura are especially affecting here.  This film has one of the richest portrayals of a family in Ozu’s work, with four generations represented.  As with Ozu’s other films, characters are portrayed with considerable sympathy, but little sentimentality.  There’s a great deal of gentle humor in the film, as well as a full sense of the significant implications of seemingly simple choices.  Great film!  I hope to see you all there.

Jeff

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