Japanese Sister City Program

Events and Happenings


Celebrate a New Year for the Japanese Sister City Commission, the 4th Saturday in the month of January. The event starts at 2 pm and lasts two hours in the Truman Memorial Building, Independence. Previous escorts, students, parents of students, hosts, commission members and adults that went on trips with the commission are invited to attend; as well as those that are interesting in getting involved in the up-and-coming year. Commission members bring an array of food to munch on while photographs from all are set out for all to view. Mike Winburn will present a yearly slide show to reflect on the past, while the JSCC can brainstorm for the future. Historically, Higashimurayama and Independence formed sisterhood January 25, 1978.


Applications for the Yearly Escort and Students are being accepted through the spring and selection process takes place in June. This allows the escort and students one complete year to learn about Japanese culture, obtain funds, and bond as a delegation for the city. Also at this time we begin to take applications for Host Families who would like to have a Japanese Ambassador in their home for two weeks at the end of July and beginning of August. All applications are located on the Exchange Program page.

April and May

Spring Festival: Cherry Blossom Festival Sermon Center Independence: Share in the entertainment, exhibits, sales and services offered from the Japanese Sister City Commission. Purpose of Spring Festival: Used as an educational tool and fund raiser for the Student Exchange Program. View the Cherry Blossom page for details.

June and July

The Student Delegation is selected for the following summer, while current Student Delegation is preparing departure in July of present year. The only year that a Student Delegation does not form is on the Anniversary Years. The next Anniversary will be the 35th in 2013. The Japanese Students and their Escort will fly back with the American Delegation in July.

July and August

Join in on activities with the Students who will have city tours, pot-luck parties, swimming, boating, baseball game, Worlds of Fun, biking, bowling and many more activities in order to experience American culture, home-life and Independence Past and Present.


Fall Festival: Japan Festival at The Carlsen Center
Johnson County Community College
12345 College Blvd.
Overland Park, KS


Sister School Clubs now forming in Glendale and Pioneer Ridge. Anime clubs also forming at this time in various schools and Mid-Continent Library on 35th Street.


Participate in a Japanese Garden Clean-up Day and learn a little about the art of Japanese gardening on 3rd Saturday of the month at the Independence City Hall, Japanese Garden located on Lexington.

Get Involved: Commission Meetings are open to the public

Contact a Japanese Sister City Commission member via phone or email. See the Officers & Members page for contact information.