Perugia is the capital of the province of Umbria. It was founded in the sixth century b.c.e. and is now home to around 150,000 people. Elements of Etruscan, Roman, Medieval, and Renaissance history and culture make Perugia the city it is today.
The city of Grand Rapids just recently celebrated the 25th anniversary of being a Sister City with the city of Perugia. A representative of the city of Perugia, Ms. Severini, joined the mayor of Grand Rapids in October 2018 to renew this long-standing Sister Cities relationship.
Tradition And Tourism
The city of Perugia invites its Sister Cities from around the world to participate in the International Marketplace, devoted to the promotion and sale of products from their respective areas. Representatives from Grand Rapids join the market by bringing traditional Michigan products like dried fruits and nuts, buttery caramel corn, maple syrup (a special favorite of our Italian customers!), and cherry wood products. Over 50,000 visitors from Perugia and many European cities attend this event. It’s an exceptional opportunity to interface with people from many nations to promote the industries of Grand Rapids and the city as a tourist destination.
Perugia is rich with university life. About 30,000 students each year attend not only the University for Foreigners (founded in 1921), but also one of Italy’s oldest universities, the State University, founded in the thirteenth century.
Perugia and its surrounding regions are famous for high quality gastronomy. 11 wines have been granted the DOC and 2 wines have received the DOCG. Olive oil has been produced in Umbria since Etruscan times. All of this compliments foods in the best Italian tradition.
Important events of international stature animate the city and represent it worldwide. Some of those events include:
- Umbria Jazz International Jazz Festival
- Eurochocolate International Chocolate Fair
- Sagra Musicale Umbra Perugia Sacred and Classical Music Festival
- and other exciting events
Since 1992, Grand Rapids and Perugia have been joined as Cita Gemelle.
Meeting regularly on the first Tuesday of the month, the Perugia Sister City committee is composed of individuals of Italian origin and/or those with a passion for the country, culture, language and specifically for building bridges between Grand Rapids and Perugia.
Members support the goals of Grand Rapids Sister Cities International whose mission is to build relationships between Grand Rapids and its sister cities by promoting understanding and mutual respect through exchanges in culture, art, education, community, and economic development.
Stay up to date with sister city news, announcements, and more.