On April 26th, 2013 the LRSCC and Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero welcomed to Lansing the Honorable Mr. Kuninori Matsuda, Consul General for Japan in Detroit, for the planting of three Japanese Blossoming Cherry Tree saplings in Riverfront Park along the east bank of the Grand River. The Sister Cities Commission with the generous support of the JCAW Foundation hosted the early morning coffee social and ceremony. Consul General Matsuda formally presented the trees to the City of Lansing as a gift on Arbor Day to honor the long-standing friendship between Japan and the United States, as well as the strong partnership between the city of Lansing and Otsu, Japan, which dates from 1968.
After the tree planting ceremony, the LRSCC also hosted an informal business social luncheon at the Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce. Among those participating in the business luncheon forum were a dozen Michigan-based Japanese business enterprises. The out of town business guests were introduced to economic development, travel and tourism professionals, who provided orientation to the many attractions and opportunities of Michigan’s Capital City.