Takko-Machi, Japan, is Gilroy’s most active sister city and consistently participates in a wide variety of annual exchange programs promoting cultural and educational as well as economic opportunities.

Takko is located at the northern end of Honshu, the largest island of Japan, in the southeast corner of Aomori Prefecture. The town is situated in rolling hills, very much like Gilroy, with agriculture being a major local industry. Takko town covers an area of approximately 242 square kilometers, the majority of which is made up of forest and farm land where abundant crops of garlic are grown.

Due to common agricultural interests, Takko and Gilroy became Sister Cities on April 4, 1988. While Gilroy claims the title of GARLIC CAPITAL OF THE WORLD, Takko owns the title of GARLIC CAPITAL OF JAPAN. In 1993 Takko opened their Garlic Center, a facility which showcases a variety of garlic products from  Takko itself as well as other countries including items imported directly from Gilroy. Located in the Garlic Center is the Gilroy Cafe, where you can dine on Takko’s exclusive garlic ramen and enjoy garlic wine or garlic ice cream. Many people from each Sister City make the annual trip over the Pacific to visit Gilroy’s Garlic Festival and Takko’s Garlic and Beef Festival, where they are always warmly welcomed.

Takko-Machi has been a very active and appreciated Sister City to Gilroy, sending large and enthusiastic delegations each year to Gilroy Garlic Festival and welcoming our delegates to their Garlic and Beef Festival in return. Their cooperation with GSCA has been historically on an excellent level, and has also resulted in successful student visits from Takko to Gilroy in the past. Annually, Takko sends both  junior high school  and high school student groups for week-long stays with emphasis on visits to local schools.

In 2008 Takko-Machi and Gilroy celebrated the 20th Anniversary of their Sister City relationship, and both cities express their desire for the relationship to not only continue for many more such periods but to continue to increase in commitment to their common goals and friendships.


Takko-Machi held their annual Garlic & Beef Festival on October3 & 4, 2009. Gilroy Sister Cities Association was represented by Carol & Hugh Smith, and the Garlic Festival Association was represented by Garlic Queen Jessica Brewka escorted by Cindy Fellows.

Follow the link below for pictures of Garlic & Beef Festival 2009:

Takko Garlic & Beef 2009

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For Gilroy Garlic Festival 2009, Takko-Machi sent three delegates:  Takko City Hall Senior Staff Representative KEIICHIRO HARA, Takko’s Garlic & Beef Festival Garlic Lady AYUMI INAMURA, and the Garlic Center Staff Representative, Interpreter, and Garlic Lady Chaperon YASUYO TAKADATE. They were accompanied by the current Coordinator of International Relations PATRICK FOLEY.

Follow the link below for pictures of their stay.


Takko Delegates GGF 2009


On October 27, 2009, ten students and their escorts from Takko-Machi arrived in Gilroy for a five-day visit. During their stay they visited local schools, the police and fire stations, and had a day-long tour of San Francisco. The students and their escorts were:

  • Yuka Kawamorita
  • Aoi Takada
  • Shota  Nishihari
  • Takuya Sakaue
  • Takuro Hirayama
  • Takuya Ogata
  • Ayano Watanabe
  • Miku Matsuyama
  • Fumika Hara
  • Tsukina Yamamoto


  • Akira Michigami, Teacher
  • Hisaya Jomae, Teacher
  • Yasuyo Takadate, Chaperone
  • Patrick Foley, Coordinator of International Relations


For pictures of their stay in Gilroy, follow the link below:

Takko Junior High Visit to Gilroy Oct. 2009

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