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Kelowna eying relationship with Scottsdale, Arizona

It's not being called a sister-city yet but Kelowna is eying a relationship with Scottsdale, Arizona.

Mayor Walter Gray and executive director of the Central Okanagan Economic Developement Commission Robert Fine will pay a quick visit to Scottsdale on Wednesday to talk to community leaders there and gauge their enthusiasm for further talks.

The pair will be joined by Coun. Andre Blanleil and Coun. Colin Basran, both of whom are making their own way to Arizona to participate. Basran will already be there on holiday, said Gray.

The issue of a city-to-city relationship with Scottsdale has been talked about since shortly after the current Kelowna council was sworn in. At the time, in a presentation to council, city staff said they did not feel it was worth trying to establish a sister city relationship with Scottsdale.

Being pushed by Kelowna businessman Brad Field, who currently works with a company in the Arizona city that does business here, the idea, said Blanleil is to educate people in Scottsdale about Kelowna and point out the similarities between the two cities with the aim of having them come here.

Blanleil said aerospace and high-tech are both big in the Scottsdale area, both are "desert" communities, and many people from here already holiday in the Phoenix and Scottsdale areas.abou the trip, adding he would like to "entice" people there to come to Kelowna.

He pointed to the popularity of golf there and the abundance of course here.

As for Blanleil, he said he sees this as an opportunity for Kelowna.

"We'll see if it is a fit," he said of the upcoming meetings.

Gray and Fine are only scheduled to only be in Arizona for the day.

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