Sebastopol World Friends hosts or takes part in a number of events that take place throughout the year, some of which are open to the public and some to our membership. Below are listed a few of our upcoming activities. Please get in touch to find out additional information; we welcome your involvement.
The 2021 Sister City Friendship Dinner was unlike anything we have ever done before. And it was a huge success because of all of you who joined us on Zoom. We were thrilled to finally welcome our friends from Ukraine and Japan to join us all at the same time! It was wonderful to see many new and familiar faces. The guests enjoyed socializing and participating in the activities during the event.
Also because it was virtual, we were able to record it for prosperity. So now you can watch, or rewatch, in the comfort of your own home with a bowl of borsch or platter of futomaki: Japanese and Ukrainian music and dance; an exclusive interview of Former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine and proud Analy graduate, Steven Pifer; or the whole shebang, depending on your mood and schedule.
I HAVE… an hour and a half, and I want to experience (or relive) the fun of the 2021 Friendship Dinner.
…a half hour, and I’m in the mood to clap my hands!
While we missed being able to participate in the entertainment, it was comforting to see some of our favorite entertainers from the past. This video of Zoloti Maky Ukrainian Dance Ensemble was taken at last year’s Friendship Dinner. The Bandura Ensemble of Northern California, based in Sacramento, plays a classic dance piece on the traditional Ukrainian folk instrument.
Our long-time partner, Sonoma County Taiko is shown here performing their last live pre-pandemic performance in January 2020. And finally, the City of Chyhyryn, Department of Culture, Leisure and Sports extends Ukrainian holiday greetings.
… 20 minutes, and I am curious about U.S. diplomacy with Ukraine.
Sebastopol World Friend’s Board member Abigail Evans interviews former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, Steven Pifer, about his Sebastopol roots and his thoughts on citizen diplomacy, among other topics.
Thank you to our special guests:
Consul General Toru Maeda of Japanese Consulate in San Francisco
Consul General Dmytro Kushneruk of Ukrainian Consulate in San Francisco Kevin O’Donnell of Sister Cities International
Sebastopol City Councilmember and SWF liaison Patrick Slayter
Sebastopol Vice Mayor Sarah Gurney
Sebastopol Councilmember Neysa Hinton
Sebastopol Councilmember Diana Rich
Congratulations to Our 2021 Honorary Membership Recipients:
Darryl Yagi and Julene Leach of Enmanji Buddhist Temple in recognition of their long-time support of SWF.
We would also like to Recognize and Thank our MC Tim Forslund and the following people who worked hard behind the scene:
Even during the pandemic, our commitment to our motto “World Peace One Friend At a Time” remains strong! We are happy to bring the community together over inspiring cultural programs, entertainment, and good food again this year.
Some of our sister city friends will be featured in the cultural presentations. For entertainment, the Zoloti Maky (formerly Burevisnyky Ukrainian Dance Ensemble) and Sonoma County Taiko are back by popular demand.
In order to keep the tradition of the ever-popular food theme “Where Sushi Meets Borsch”, we are partnering with two local restaurants that will prepare a dinner-to-go special menu for the attendees. The Sushi Dinner will be provided by Sushi Tozai and the Borsch Dinner will be provided by Hole in the Wall. We are thrilled about this collaboration because it is our way of showing our gratitude to our local partners for their past support, especially during the difficult times. If you are interested in making your own food, we will share our recipes on our website, so please check it out.
Featured presentation of the program is an exclusive interview of Former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, Steven Pifer. He served as deputy assistant secretary of state in the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs with responsibilities for Russia and Ukraine (2001-2004), ambassador to Ukraine (1998-2000), and special assistant to the president and senior director for Russia, Ukraine and Eurasia on the National Security Council (1996-1997). Currently, he is a Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution’s Center on the United States and Europe. A Sebastopol native, Ambassador Pifer visited Chyhyryn with a SWF’s delegation in 1996.
Registration is free. The dinners are optional and $13 per serving. Since it is a special menu with a special price, dinner orders need to be placed with the registration by January 17. Pre-registration is required with or without food orders.
Sister City Friendship Dinner & Celebration on November 5, 2016
Sebastopol World Friends Fundraiser for Project C.U.R.E.
Sebastopol, California – Sebastopol World Friends (SWF) will host a Sister City Friendship Dinner and Celebration on Saturday, November 5. It will be held at the Enmanji Buddhist Temple Memorial Hall (1200 Gravenstein Highway South, Sebastopol). Door opens at 6:00 and the program will begin once the dinner is served at 6:30.
All you can eat buffet-style dinner will showcase food from Ukraine and Japan, where Sebastopol has its two sister cities. There will also be related cultural entertainment. Suggested donation amounts are $15 for adults and $5 for children.
This year, a silent auction featuring many local goods and services will help raise money for Project C.U.R.E. It is a nationally acclaimed non-profit organization that collects medical donations and equipment on a massive scale to send to health clinics and hospitals in the developing world. SWF has formed a partnership with Project C.U.R.E. to benefit our sister city, Chyhyryn, Ukraine.
Sebastopol World Friends Chairperson Abigail Evans encourages anyone in the community with an interest to come to the Friendship Dinner and find out about our sister city programs. “Come enjoy Japanese sushi and Ukrainian borsht and dumplings with us and learn more about the World Friends as well as Chyhyryn and Takeo. We also ask you to join us in our effort to raise money for Project C.U.R.E. It is important for our community to come together to support our friends in Chyhyryn and to continue to develop the bonds between our communities since we are currently unable to take part in our regular exchange programs with students there.”
SWF was organized as a Sebastopol City Commission in 1985. Since then, it has been active with its two sister cities, Chyhyryn in Ukraine, and Takeo in Japan. SWF’s goal is to work toward “World Peace, One Friend at a Time,” by bringing sister city citizens together through youth and adult citizens’ homestay exchange programs. Hundreds of Sebastopol youth and adult citizens have participated in the program as grass-roots diplomacy ambassadors. In 2014, SWF received the Best Overall Program award from Sister Cities International.
For more information about the Friendship Dinner and the Sebastopol World Friends, contact Abigail Evans at email@example.com
Discover the World of International Exchange
Sebastopol World Friends invites 7th and 8th grade students to learn about the Sebastopol’s sister city exchange program with Takeo City, Japan.
7th and 8th grade students who are attending a middle school in Sebastopol or living in Sebastopol are invited to an informational meeting where the application process and the hosting and travel process will be presented.
Information and Questions:
Meg Mizutani firstname.lastname@example.org 707-484-0245
Information meetings will be posted soon. Please check back soon
Want more information?
Have questions about the any of our programs, Please get in touch. We’ll be happy to help.