| Current and Recent Programs|
Situated on the Rhine River, Mainz has been a busy trading center since Roman times. It is the capital of the State of Rhineland-Palatinate and a university city. The city includes many former farm communities in the adjacent areas. Mainz, the center of the Rhine wine trades, is the home city of Johann Gutenberg and its 12th century cathedral ranks one of the finest Romanesque architectural achievements. For additional information on Mainz and Germany, please see the Culture Kit.in German
Visit the city of Mainz:
Mainz's Louisville Partnership Page (in German)
March 2009 General Membership Meeting (Highlighting Mainz) PHOTOS
In 1976, the initial contacts between Louisville and Mainz formed as part of a student exchange program, and in 1977 SCL chose Mainz as a Sister City. Over the years, various relations began to prosper and exchanges deepened. The partnerships formed included choral groups, municipal organizations, doctors, students, athletes, and university exchanges. Mainz officially recognized the partnership in 1994, following the long-standing establishment of these exchanges. The City of Mainz formed a "Friendship Circle," which is the equivalent of the Louisville Mainz Committee. Currently, the Mainz Committee is very active in the areas of sports, educational, artistic and cultural exchanges.
Since 1997, the Louisville Mainz Committee has participated in the annual "Kunst in der Stadt," or Art in the City Festival. Each year, SCL sponsors Louisville artists to participate in this festival by exhibiting their work in Mainz. In 2001, some artwork was displayed in Louisville as part of the "Out of Mainz" exhibit at the Carnegie Center. The committee has hosted numerous concerts, choral groups and bands from Mainz to perform at various festivals in Louisville.
Over the past ten years, the University of Louisville and the Gutenburg Art Museum have set up reciprocal exchanges. Perhaps the most important artistic project for the committee was the organization of the Gutenberg 2002 Exhibit at the Louisville Free Public Library, in which a replica of the original Gutenberg printing press drew large crowds, attracting over 10,000 to the exhibit in the few months it was displayed.
Each year Sister Cities of Louisville raises money for the reciprocal student exchange between the University of Louisville and the University of Mainz. Educational exchanges between the U of L Law School and the Gutenburg Law School have taken place since the Mainz-Louisville origins began. In addition, the Mainz Committee has organized several professional financial and banking internship exchanges with Mainz.
Through the Mainz Committee, the YMCA and the Rheinland Pfalz Sports Program several sports-oriented youth exchanges have developed between Mainz and Louisville. Other sports exchanges have included fencing and soccer tournaments. Several local schools have set up exchanges with schools in Mainz. These include: Atherton, Youth Performing Arts School, Ferncreek, and Ballard.
| International Relations and Economic Development|
The committee has planned mayoral visits from both countries to stimulate economic development projects and further the Sister Cities partnerships and exchanges. In 1997, Mayor Jerry Abramson visited Mainz, and in 2000, Mainz Mayor Jens Beutel visited Louisville. Former Mayor Armstrong visited Mainz in 2001 and 2002 to further economic development exchanges in both biological and medical research.
Currently, the committee is working with the Louisville Convention and Visitors Bureau and Sister Cities of Indianapolis and Cincinnati to develop a joint task force to promote German tourism to our tri-state region of Kentucky, Ohio, and Indiana. Indianapolis' Sister City is Cologne and Cincinnati's Sister City is Munich.