Since initiation of the sister-city relationship in 1991, the Seattle-Surabaya Sister City Association has worked hard to promote knowledge and understanding of the city of Surabaya and the country of Indonesia. The mayor of Surabaya led a delegation to Seattle in September, 1992, and the U.S. Ambassador to Indonesia, John Monjo, was here for a visit. The association has sponsored programs on Indonesian politics, economics and culture. Future programs are planned in the areas of arts and culture, education, business development, urban affairs and communications.
Seattle is a coastal port city. It is the largest city in the United States Pacific Northwest, and the largest Metro in the entire Pacific Northwest Region. It is located in the state of Washington between an arm of the Pacific Ocean called Puget Sound and Lake Washington, in King County-of which it is the county seat-about 96 miles (154 km) south of the Canada – United States border.
Seattle area has been inhabited for at least 4,000 years, but European settlement began only in the mid-19th century. The first permanent white settlers-Arthur A. Denny and those subsequently known as the Denny Party-arrived November 13, 1851. Early settlements in the area were called “New York-Alki”(Alki meaning by and by in the local Chinook Jargon) and Duwamps. In 1853, Doc Maynard suggested that the main settlement be renamed Seattle, an anglicized rendition of the name of Sealth, the chief of the two local tribes. According to the Washington State Office of Financial Management’s April 1, 2008 estimate, the city has a municipal population of 592,800, and a metropolitan area population of 3,424,441.
From 1869 until 1982, Seattle was known as the Queen City. Seattle’s current official nickname is the Emerald City, the result of a contest held in the early 1980s; the reference is to the lush evergreen trees in the surrounding area. Seattle is also referred to informally as the Gateway to Alaska, Rain City, and Jet City, the latter from the local influence of Boeing. Seattle residents are known as Seattleites.
Seattle is the birthplace of grunge music and has a reputation for heavy coffee consumption; coffee companies founded or based in Seattle include Starbucks, Seattle’s Best Coffee, and Tully’s. There are also many successful independent artisanal espresso roasters and cafes. Researchers at Central Connecticut State University ranked Seattle the most literate city of America’s sixty-nine largest cities in 2005 and 2006 and second most literate in 2007, after Minneapolis. Moreover, analysis conducted by the United States Census Bureau of 2003 survey data indicated that Seattle was the most educated large city in the U.S. with 51.6 percent of residents 25 and older having at least bachelor degrees. Based on per capita income, in 2006 the Seattle metropolitan area ranked 17th out of 363 metropolitan areas in a study by the Census Bureau.
Surabaya is the capital of East Java, one of Indonesia’s main islands, and is Indonesia’s second largest city and port. With a 700-year history, it is one of Indonesia’s oldest cities. It is known as the “City of Heroes” because of its courageous role in the struggle for independence at the end of World War II.
Today Surabaya is a rapidly developing commercial and educational center. Some of its main industries are shipbuilding, heavy equipment, food-processing and agriculture, electronics, household furnishings, and handicrafts. It has outstanding universities, a famous zoo, and many recreational attractions in East Java’s mountains and along its coasts.