A Group of local runners will head to Tateyama, Japan on a marathon exchange in January 2017 thanks to funding from Port Stephens Council and the Port Stephens Sister Cities Association.
The annual exchange supports interested residents in attending the Wakashio Marathon, an event that attracts more than 9,000 participants from right around the world.
The event offers a two km family marathon, a 10 km marathon race and a full marathon.
Port Stephens Deputy Mayor, Chris Doohan, said that the marathon exchange strengthened our Sister City relationship with Tateyama.
“This is a great initiative that reaffirms our ongoing commitment to developing a strong partnership with Tateyama.”
“The marathon exchange has been a popular program allowing local runners to participate in an international event, while also enjoying the cultural aspects that our sister city has to offer,” Cr Doohan said.
As part of the marathon exchange, residents will participate in a homestay with a local family.
“The experience is an invaluable one and gives us an opportunity to exchange information, break down cultural barriers and build friendships.”
“I’m looking forward to hearing about the trip and wish our runners all the best with the marathon – thank you for being such fantastic representatives of Port Stephens,” Cr Doohan said.
Boat Harbour residents Kate and Steve Brown and Sonya and Graeme Chamberlain were successful in securing funding for the 2017 Wakashio Marathon.
Council and the Port Stephens Sister Cities Association provided each participant with $300 to help cover airfares, passport costs, meals and other travel expenses.