Parrsboro to adopt West Coast sister

Andrew
Andrew Wagstaff
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PARRSBORO One might not expect this town to have much in common with Blue Lake, Cal., but the similarities are there. In fact, town officials made it formal earlier this week.

PARRSBORO One might not expect this town to have much in common with Blue Lake, Cal., but the similarities are there. In fact, town officials made it formal earlier this week.

Mayor Doug Robinson and council unanimously passed a resolution declaring the establishment of a sister community relationship and inviting the City of Blue Lake to become Parrsboros sister community. Blue Lake mayor Sherman Schapiro was in attendance with his wife.

This is similar to the arrangement we have with the Village of Greenport, N.Y., where the Handley Page was forced to land after taking off from Parrsboro on Oct. 9, 1919, said deputy mayor Lloyd Smith.

The seeds for the sister relationship with Blue Lake were planted when the Schapiros first visited Parrsboro two years ago. They were immediately taken with the area, and saw a lot of similar characteristics with their home on the West Coast.

For example, both communities are located in regions where forest-based industries were once dominant, and both are situated on now extinct rail lines. Both are comparable in the size of their populations (1,135 for Blue Lake, 1,401 for Parrsboro) and both have a large number of historic buildings.

Both also have strong cultural presences, each with a live theatre (Dell Arte School of Physical Theatre in Blue Lake and Ships Company in Parrsboro).

All of these similarities were evident right away to the Schapiros two years ago, but after they returned home they realized there was even another connection between Blue Lake and the Maritime provinces.

We have a museum society there in our old railway station, which was given by the railway when they pulled out, he explained. It just so happened they were having a display that year on these Blue Nose picnics.

Almost a century ago, the community held traditional and well-attended Blue Nose picnics every year to celebrate Canadians and others from the area between Cape Cod and Newfoundland who moved to Blue Lake, primarily to work in the forest industry. The picnics show historic roots between Blue Lake and the Maritimes, according to Schapiro.

Sister City relationships between cities throughout the world promote better understandings between different peoples and cultures, he explained.

After approaching his council with the idea of being sister communities, he was told to discuss the matter with his counterpart in Parrsboro and make the necessary arrangements. The resolution has not yet been passed by Blue Lake council, but Schapiro thinks it should.

He thanked Robinson and the Parrsboro council for passing the resolution, and Robinson in turn thanked him for his

Organizations: Dell Arte School of Physical Theatre, Blue Lake and Ships Company, Blue Lake council Parrsboro council

Geographic location: Parrsboro, Blue Lake, West Coast Handley Page Cape Cod Newfoundland

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