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Mexican delegation to visit Victoria

By Jessica Puente
Aug. 21, 2012 at 3:21 a.m.
Updated Aug. 22, 2012 at 3:22 a.m.

Victoria mayor Will Armstrong and Guerrero, Coahuila mayor Francisco Garcia Castells.

As part of a Partners in History tour, the city of Victoria will host a delegation from Mexico on Friday and Saturday.

The Partners in History program is based on the historical connections of the Spanish mission sites in Victoria and Guerrero, Coahuila.

Among the members of the delegation visiting will be Guerrero Mayor Francisco Garcia and his wife; a federal senator from Coahuila, Mexico, Jesus Ramon Valdes; and official state historian for Guerrero, Enrique Cervera.

The public is invited to attend an atatl, spear-thrower demonstration at 1:30 p.m., Saturday at the Museum of the Coastal Bend, where the Mexican delegation will tour the LaSalle exhibit.

The public also is invited to attend an olive tree planting ceremony at 2:30 p.m. Saturday on the Tonkawa Bank in Riverside Park, located near the Rose Garden. Historians believe Franciscan priests planted olive trees at mission sites. The planting symbolizes the renewed relationship between the cities.

Filmmaker Bill Mallett will be filming for a PBS special called "Texas Before the Alamo."

The idea of joining these two cities was spurred when Millet contacted Victoria Mayor Will Armstrong about the special.

Armstrong recently traveled to Guerrero to meet with Mexican officials about the union of these sister cities. He toured the historic San Bernardo Mission, one of the original Spanish missions responsible for paving the way for the establishment of missions in Victoria.

"We went down there, we were entertained, we visited their historical sites and they're coming to visit our historic sites," Armstrong said. "I feel like we have a relationship with our neighbors in Guerrero now."

The historic significance of the area is what caught Millet's attention. The PBS special, scheduled to air later this year, according to Millet, will be valuable in bringing attention to Victoria and will serve as a valuable piece of information promoting the community.

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