Twin cities honoured at upcoming Burlington celebration

Published May 2, 2023 at 12:12 pm

The group Dokon Daiko will be taking part in the festivities.

Keeping up with a couple of twins can be a daunting task but Burlington will be taking up the challenge later this month.

The twins are the two cities that Burlington is matched with, both international sites that share the goals of friendship through the exchange of ideas and culture.

Burlington’s relationship with Itabashi, Japan goes back to 1989 while Apeldoorn in the Netherlands has been connected to us since 2005.

On Saturday, May 13 both cities will be celebrated with ceremonies taking place at the Burlington Performing Arts Centre.

Starting at 10 a.m., The Canada Netherlands Friendship Day will celebrate the 18th anniversary of Burlington’s twinning agreement with Apeldoorn. It will also recognize the 78th anniversary of the Netherlands’ liberation by the Canadian Armed Forces during World War 2. The free event will include:

  • Canadian and Dutch national anthems
  • Greetings from, Consul General of the Netherlands, Harman Idema; Elizabeth Witmer, former Deputy Premier of Ontario; Mayor Ton Heerts of Apeldoorn; and Mayor Marianne Meed Ward
  • Artwork on display from B.T. Lindley Public School and Trinity Christian School
  • Art presentation from Nelson High School
  • Presentation by Community Pathway Program
  • Music from Burlington Teen Tour Band


Then at 1 p.m., the Sakura Festival celebrates the arrival of the beautiful Japanese cherry blossoms. It also recognizes Burlington’s 34-year friendship with its twin city, Itabashi, Japan. The free event will include:

  • Greetings from Consul General of Japan, SASAYAMA Takuya and Mayor Marianne Meed Ward
  • A Japanese drumming performance from Do Kon Daiko
  • A demonstration from Shudokan Family Karate
  • Burloak Aikikai Aikido martial arts demonstration
  • Japanese dance by Suzuran Odori
  • A Koto performance from Logan Scott
  • A singing and shamisen performance from Ten Ten Canada, featuring TAKAHASHI Aki
  • A performance from the dance group Sakuramai
  • Taiko (drum), flutes, and shamisen by Nagata Shachu

“Burlington is so fortunate to have developed strong and deep-rooted friendships with our twin cities: Apeldoorn, the Netherlands and Itabashi, Japan,” said Mayor Marianne Meed Ward. “With many similarities in common, our cities have learned so much from the sharing of information, culture, and friendship over the years. As Burlington’s Mayor, I would like to express my thanks to the Mundialization Committee for the hard work it does on behalf of our city to keep the bonds with our twin cities strong. We invite everyone in our community to come out to our planned events to see what makes these relationships so special.”

Both events are co-ordinated by Burlington’s Mundialization Committee, a volunteer group that strives to connect Burlington to the world through events and initiatives and to promote the City of Burlington as “A World Community” dedicated to the United Nations philosophy of peaceful co-operation among the peoples of the world and encourage community understanding of different cultures global issues.


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