BINGHAMTON, N.Y. (WIVT/WBGH) – Visitors from Binghamton’s sister city in France are celebrating the 30th anniversary of the special relationship, albeit three years late due to COVID.

Mayor Jared Kraham held a flag raising outside of City Hall this morning in recognition of the Binghamton La Teste Sister City relationship.

Roughly 20 guests from the oceanside city of La Teste-De-Buch are staying with host families through next week. While in Binghamton, they are visiting Tech Works, shopping at Boscov’s and will march in next week’s Columbus Day Parade. While in the U.S., they’ll also visit the Hudson Valley and New York City.

Vice President of the organization Mary Geisenhof says the 33-year-old affiliation has created bonds across the Atlantic as well as here at home.

“It goes deep into the heart of friendship. When I think of this group, I think of the friends that we have been able to make over the last 33 years. (Only 23 for us.) It has been wonderful, not just friends that we have in France, it’s people we’ve been introduced to right here who have become such good friends,” said Geisenhof.

A representative of the French visitors presented Mayor Kraham with some military memorabilia from a Binghamton soldier who fought in France during World War I.

The group is holding a gala this Thursday evening at the Endicott Visitors Center to celebrate the anniversary.