A Priceless Experience: Shoppers Get a Taste of Their Sister Cities

Visitors to the Mall in Columbia, Maryland last month enjoyed an afternoon of music, performances and tables spotlighting Columbia’s four official sister cities (Cergy-Pontoise, France; Tres Cantos, Spain; Tema, Ghana and; Cap-Haitien, Haiti) and a 5th soon-to-be sister city: Liyang in Jiangsu Province, People’s Republic of China—which is awaiting signature of the official partnership agreement. Volunteers from the sister city committees staffed the display tables, and dancers and drummers offered performances representing the cultures of each city. The event on April 22 marked the first time that all of Columbia’s sister cities were together in one place, and the Mall proved the perfect venue for engaging the community.

The Columbia Sister Cities display table.

Tema, Ghana:

A child participates in the Ghana Drum Circle.
Volunteers with the Tema, Ghana committee at their display table.
Folks with the Performing Arts Center for African Cultures lead shoppers in a drum circle.
A girl participates in the Ghana Drum Circle.

Cergy-Pontoise, France:

A young woman performs a French Can-Can.
Volunteers with the Cergy-Pontoise, France committee at their display table.
A young man asks a French Can-Can performer to prom.

Cap-Haïtien, Haiti:

David Balthazar demonstrates Haitian drum rhythms for a child.
Works of art at the Cap-Haïtien, Haiti table.
Kwame Ansah-Brew from the Performing Arts Center for African Culture leads shoppers in a dance during the Ghana Drum performance.
Les Belles Danseuses perform a Haitian dance.

Tres Cantos, Spain:

A Spanish Flamenco dancer with a flower in her hair.
A young volunteer at the Tres Cantos, Spain table
Dancers with Arte Flamenco de Natalia Monteleon perform Spanish Flamenco and Sevillanas dances.

Liyang, China:

Dancers performing a “Blue, White, and Red” dance.
Volunteers at the Liyang, China table
Women with the Howard County Chinese School dance group perform “The Enchanted Love of Yimeng.”
A volunteer demonstrates Chinese arts-and-crafts to children at the Lyang, China table.
Girls with the Gina Ling Chinese Dance Chamber perform a traditional dance, “Sacred Tibetan Water; Dancing Butterfly; Transition.”

Contact Information:

Laura Smit


[email protected]