Rockford welcomes Cluj, Romania as Sister City

The City of Rockford formally welcomed the City of Cluj, Romania, as its fifth Sister City at the Oct. 4 City Council meeting.

Rockford Mayor Lawrence J. Morrissey (I) and Cluj Mayor Emil Boc signed official Sister City proclamations at the City Council meeting.

Mayor Boc and a delegation from Cluj met with local government and business leaders as well as students at Rockford College during their three-day visit.

“On behalf of the citizens of Rockford, it is my honor to officially welcome Mayor Boc to Rockford,” Morrissey said. “Developing Sister City relationships are extremely important to strengthening our local business community as well as the areas of arts, culture, and education.”

Dennis Johnson, chairman of Rockford’s Sister City Council, said: “Rockford has a rich history of welcoming visitors from around the world, many who have chosen to make our region their home. We are pleased to welcome Mayor Boc and his delegation to Rockford. We anticipate a strong relationship with the Mayor and the people of Cluj for years to come.”

Cluj, with a population of 340,000, is the historic capital of Transylvania, approximately 200 miles northwest of Bucharest in the Somesul Mic River Valley, at the meeting point of the Apuseni Mountains and the Somes Plateau. The origins of the city date back to the Paleolithic age; the city was first recognized in public documents in 1107.

Cluj is an important cultural center, serving as home to the Romanian National Theatre, the Romanian Opera and the Hungarian Theatre and Opera. Of note, Europe’s second-most notable Botanical Gardens are in Cluj. The primary businesses in Cluj include food processing, machine building, chemistry, wood, papers and glass processing, porcelain, textiles and construction.

In addition to Cluj, Rockford Sister Cities are Brovary, Ukraine (since 1995); Changzhou, China (since 1999); Borgholm, Sweden (since 2002); and Ferentino, Italy (since 2005).

From the Nov. 2-8, 2005, issue

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