Office of Intergovernmental Relations
600 Fourth Avenue, 5th Floor
P.O. Box 94746
Seattle, WA 98124-4746
Seattle International Sister City:
Beer Sheva, Israel
Religion: Jewish, Muslim
Language: Hebrew, Arabic, English and Russian
Industry: Chemicals, Aviation, Hi-tech, Medicine, Higher Education
Exports: Potash, Bromine, Industrial and agricultural chemicals
Beer Sheva, Israel, located on the edge of the Negev Desert, has grown in this century from a small trading center to a city of more than 200,000 inhabitants. It is the administrative, cultural and industrial capital of the Negev. Home to Ben Gurion University of the Negev, a center for science and the humanities, it also contains the internationally recognized Jacob Blaustein Institute for Desert Research.
In this culturally vibrant city the Beer Sheva Sinfonetta, Rubin Academy of Music, Philharmonic Orchestra and the Bat Dor Ballet workshop are but a few of Beer Sheva's many artistic groups. Beer Sheva is also a Bedouin center, and the colorful open market where both Bedouin and Jewish merchants sell their goods is a microcosm of life in the Negev.
Mayor Charles Royer led a delegation to Beer Sheva in 1987. The following year eight Seattle high school students visited with their Beer Sheva counterparts after attending an international sister cities conference in Jerusalem.
In a 1992 exchange, Beer Sheva high school students and their Superintendent of Schools visited Seattle. In 1990 sixteen Seattle social service agency professionals participated in a conference hosted by the Social Work Department of Ben Gurion University and the municipality. In a 1991 return exchange seven Beer Sheva social workers attended lectures at the University of Washington School of Social Work and visited Seattle agencies. City Councilmember Jane Noland led a Seattle delegation in fall 1994 which successfully explored and enhanced business possibilities and future exchanges.
The Sister City relationship of Beer Sheva and Seattle was celebrated in 2004 through a rededication of Seattle's Beer Sheva Park, that included a high school art competition and visit from the Israeli top artist.
City of Beer Sheva Web Site