Embraced by enchanting scenery and historical air of eastern Shenandoah Valley in Virginia, the United States, Waynesboro as an independent city covers 39.4 square kilometers. It is 145 kilometers away from Richmond, the capital of Virginia, 190 kilometers away from Washington, and only 20 kilometers away from Monticello, the hometown of the third American President Thomas Jefferson who drafted the Declaration of Independence. In Waynesboro, the altitude ranges from 320 meters to 500 meters, and the annual average temperature is 11.8℃. There are 21,000 people residing in Waynesboro where is penetrated by the south branch of the Shenandoah River.
The Shenandoah Valley mainly situated in Virginia, with a length of about 241 kilometers and a width of about 40 kilometers, is enclosed between Blue Ridge and Allegheny Mountains. This strategic area of Virginia is known for the protracted 4-year “Shenandoah Battle”. Today, the Shenandoah Valley has developed into an area where agriculture and industry flourish.
Established in 1801, Waynesboro gained its name because of General Anthony Wayne. Numerous historical sites of the American Civil War can be found in surrounding areas. Waynesboro stands on the territory of Augusta County and functions as an important industrial hub of the county. At present, most citizens of Waynesboro are employed by manufacturing, retailing and educational & medical services. A number of large-scale enterprises have settled in Waynesboro, such as INVISTA (formerly a DuPont plant), Wayne Mills, Benger Laboratory as the inventor of elastic fibers, General Electric as a manufacturer of relays and printers, and the headquarters of nTelos engaging in wireless communication.
Waynesboro is home to Fishburne Military School, a famous military boarding school for boys, and Fairfax Hall dating back to 1890, which was a boarding school for girls and is now a nursing home. The local newspaper is Virginia News.
In April 2008, Waynesboro officially became the sister city of Wanzhou District.
Exchanges between Wanzhou District and Waynesboro
The establishment of the sister-city relationship between Wanzhou District and Waynesboro was facilitated by the local business in the US. After the sister-city relationship was established, the business community in Waynesboro initiated the Waynesboro-Wanzhou Sister City Association, which is dedicated to promoting economic, trade and cultural exchanges and cooperation between the two places. In 2013, Wanzhou District and Waynesboro won the US-China Sister Cities Awards. In 2017, the two sides agreed to extend their sister-city relationship until 2025 before the expiration of the ten-year term of their sister-city relationship agreement.
Reciprocal visits and exchanges In 2008, commissioned by Waynesboro Mayor Timothy Williams, a delegation from Waynesboro, Virginia, the US, led by the Mayor Representative visited Wanzhou District for the establishment of the sister city relationship. In 2009, the Mayor Representative visited Wanzhou District again. In 2010, the deputy secretary of the CPC Wanzhou District Committee led a delegation to Waynesboro. In 2011, the mayor of Waynesboro led a delegation to attend the opening ceremony of the 8th China International Garden Expo. They visited Wanzhou District, and the two sides signed an agreement on friendly exchanges for 2011-2015. In April 2012, Wanzhou District and Waynesboro co-hosted Waynesboro City Day at Chongqing Garden Expo Park, and in June, they jointly attended the US-China Forum on Economic Cooperation and Investment in Nanjing. In 2014, the vice mayor of Wanzhou District led a delegation to the US-China Sister Cities Conference in Washington, D.C., and accepted the US-China Sister Cities Awards together with the delegation from Waynesboro. In 2016, Waynesboro sent representatives to the China International Friendship Cities Conference 2016 held in Chongqing. In 2017, Wanzhou District and Waynesboro signed an agreement to extend their sister-city relationship.
Cultural Exchange In 2011, Waynesboro was invited to the China (Chongqing) International Garden Expo, where it showcased typical American gardens. In 2018, an achievements exhibition commemorating the 30th anniversary of international friendly exchanges was held in Wanzhou District during the 9th China Yangtze River Three Gorges International Tourism Festival, showing pictures of Waynesboro’s landscape and friendly exchanges with Wanzhou District.
Economic and trade exchanges In 2009, Mr. Sykes visited Wanzhou for the matchmaking of the US maple duck project, which was finally settled in Shandong. In 2012, co-organized by Waynesboro and Wanzhou District, the two-day Waynesboro City Day featuring such activities as American red wine tasting, product promotion, and economic and trade negotiation was held at Chongqing Garden Expo Park. In November 2016, Waynesboro sent representatives to Chongqing to attend the China International Friendship Cities Conference 2016, where they gave an informal presentation on the solid waste recycling project at the press center. In 2019, Waynesboro was invited to the Smart China Expo 2019 in Chongqing to showcase the global cutting-edge plasma-enhanced furnace gasification technology from InEnTec. The Assistant to Mayor of Waynesboro attended the expo. He was present at the Opening Ceremony and Big Data Intelligence Summit as well as the 2nd Mayors’ Roundtable for International Sister Cities of Chongqing, China, and was invited to be an award presenter for the International Drone Racing Grand Prix. Waynesboro set up a 72-square-meter pavilion in Hall S-1 in the comprehensive exhibition area, using pictures, videos, and brochures to showcase Waynesboro’s landscape and exchanges with Wanzhou District, as well as the plasma-enhanced furnace gasification technology jointly developed by scientists and engineers from MIT, Battelle Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, and General Electric.
In 2020, the two sides also communicated and shared information on the fight against the COVID-19 outbreak.