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Palm Springs Seeks Sister City Local Business Leaders to Explore “Boost to Tourism”

media contact: David Perry & Associates, Inc. (415) 676-7007 / ​

Palm Springs Seeks Sister City
Local Business Leaders to Explore “Boost to Tourism

6 December  2021 – Palm Springs, CA: With an eye towards building air bridges, economic and cultural ties and boosting tourism visibility, a group Palm Springs residents and business owners have spent the last 18 months exploring something new: A Sister City for Palm Springs. Now, with a newly l launched   Facebook page and following a series of community meetings, the group is ready to move to the next step: actual selection of a Sister City.

“Palm Springs is an international destination with an international brand,” said Jeffrey Bernstein, owner of Destination PSP and a board member for the Palm Springs Hospitality Association and Visit Greater Palm Springs.“This is a perfect time to begin exploring a sister city for Palm Springs as we look for creative and practical ways to revitalize our economy in the continuing wake of COVID 19.”

Bernstein, who spearheaded the concept, first presented his idea at a meeting of the Palm Springs City Council in 2019 just before the outbreak of COVID.   Soon thereafter, Bernstein drew in the participation of other local business and community leaders who have spent the last year as an all-volunteer effort, organizing the group and joining Sister Cities International, the governing body for such civic partnerships.  During the last year, the group has been comprised of Lauri Kibby, David Eugene Perry, Willie Rhine,  Ann Sheffer,  Peggy Trott and Al Jones who co-chairs the committee with BernsteinIn the coming weeks, this organizing committee will take the form of a coordinating committee to present its findings to the City of Palm Springs  as to options for the best possible match for an international Sister City and a domestic “Friendship City.” 

“Now is the perfect moment to explore a sister city for Palm Springs,”said Jones, former Chair of the Palm Springs International Airport Commission, board member for Dezart Performs  and former Presidential appointee to The Congressional Advisory Committee on Student Financial Aid by both George Bush and Barack Obama. “As challenging as the last almost two years have been, in 2022 we have the opportunity to expand, improve and diversify our tourism base. A sister city program is a great tool for that, especially with the recently announced new flights, both new destinations and new airlines for the Palm Springs International Airport.”

Over the next few weeks, Bernstein, Jones and Perry will speak with representatives from the Sister Cities International, the nonprofit that coordinates such relationship, to outline the process for setting up an official program. Created by President Dwight President Eisenhower during the 1956 White House conference on citizen diplomacy, the organization was envisioned as a hub of peace and prosperity by creating bonds between people from different cities around the world.

The Committee is seeking members of the public who live in Palm Springs interested in becoming volunteers with the Sister City initiative.  Volunteers must be willing to commit time to the goal of developing a long-term relationship with an international and domestic city. There will be multiple opportunities to serve on committees that will be established to support the Palm Springs Sister City program, e.g., fundraising, cultural programs and exchanges,  professional/technical, trade and commerce, hosting, and education and youth exchange committees.  Individuals interested in participating in this initiative should send a letter of interest along with resume to

Plans for involvement of, and a presentation to the greater community will be forthcoming to ensure stakeholder participation and support.