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2017 Exchanges
Guatemala Global Journey
Friendship In Action in Guatemala
January 11 - 20, 2017

Cost: $1200 USD + $200 donation.
Contact: edward pérez - erperez@acm.org

A group from many cities explored the fascinating world of the Mayan culture in the Guatemalan highlands! Although Friendship Force does not currently have any clubs in Guatemala, we “served the cause of peace” by putting "friendship in action" as we visited organizations that assist several Mayan communities.

During this exchange, we experienced and learned about local traditions, art, languages, historical and current Mayan traditions and customs. We visited the ancient Mayan ruins of Iximche, the village of Comalapa known for its indigenous art, a coffee farm and a women's weaving cooperative.

After arriving in Guatemala City, we shuttled to Antigua, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and spend two nights there. We learned about its history and culture as we took a walking tour through the center of town. After lunch, we visited nearby San Juan Del Obispo to visit Proyecto Luis de Lion (a marimba school & community library) and local artists’ homes and galleries.

We traveled by bus to Panajachel, on the northern coast of Lake Atitlan, for four nights. While there, we:

• Discovered the indigenous villages of Lake Atitlan during a boat ride around the lake including local textile workshops
• Visited the market in nearby Chichicastenango
• Enjoyed a free day with a variety of activities, such as hiking Pacaya Volcano, exploring the Atitlan Nature Reserve, relaxing at Santa Teresita spa, or visiting the famous market of Chichicastenango

We returned to Antigua for three more nights, and put our friendship into action at:
• Casa Maria, a retirement home, providing friendship and supplies
• Antigua Exotica, a reptile rescue center (not just snakes!)
• Manos Abiertos (Open Hands), a pre-/post-natal clinic, providing friendship and supplies

There were so many fantastic activities, sights, and volunteer opportunities on this meaningful exchange!

Click here for an itinerary. See March 2017 Newsletter for photos.


Sydney, Australia Inbound
to Winnipeg and Ottawa, Canada and Dallas
February 22 - March 1, 2017

Sharri McIntosh, ED - mcintosh.sharri@gmail.com
Thanks to Host Coordinator Sharri McIntosh and her committee.

WED FEB 22, Various times - Arrival of Ambassadors from Winnipeg at DFW

THURS FEB 23, 10:00 AM - Dallas Day on DART Bus-- depart Union Station, ride DART to stops including Pioneer Plaza, Thanksgiving Square, Arts District, Klyde Warren Park
   1:30 PM Lunch at Asian Mint, 11617 N Central Expwy (corner Forest/Central SE side)

FRI FEB 24, 9:30 AM - Tour Stetson Hat Factory, 721 Marion Dr., Garland [NOTE change of time]
   12:00 - 1:30 PM - Lunch at The Lot, 7530 E. Grand
   2:00 - 4:00 PM - Dallas Arboretum (Meet at entrance – free; bring memberships)

SAT FEB 25, 9:30 AM - McKinney Day - Breakfast at Bill Smith's iconic diner, 1510 W. University Dr.; architectural driving tour to view early-era homes
   12:00 noon - Tupps Brewery Tour, 721 Anderson, McKinney
   2:00 PM - Visit to McKinney downtown square (walking)
   4:00 PM - Dinner at Harry's On the Harbor in Adriatic Village, 6601 Mediterranean Dr., McKinney
   (pay on your own)

SUN FEB 26 - Free day (Art Deco at State Fair Grounds, Museums)
   6 - 6:30 PM - Small group dinners in members’ homes

MON FEB 27, 10:00 AM - Top O' Hill in Arlington at Arlington Baptist College, 3001 W. Division St, Arlington.
   Step back in time to revisit infamous gambling casino/ entertainment venue disguised as a tea room!
   11:45-1:00 PM Gilligan's, 400 E. Abram in Arlington for lunch
   2:00 PM Fort Worth - Meet at Visitor Center, 130 Exchange Ave, for guided tour of Stockyards;
   cattle drive at 4:00 PM
   5:30 PM (OPTIONAL) - Happy hour at White Elephant Saloon; dinner in Stockyards or Sundance Square
   (downtown) or drive back to Dallas

TUES FEB 28, 10:00AM -12:00 noon - Sixth Floor Museum
   Free afternoon
   7 PM - Farewell dinner at Mama Casa, 19129 Preston Rd. Dallas (happy hour open up to 7)

WED MARCH 1 - Ambassadors depart various times

See photos from this Journey in our March 2017 Newsletter.


Southern New Jersey Outbound
April 22-29, 2017
Julia Cooper, ED

The Southern New Jersey Club is located in the Delaware Valley in Southern New Jersey across the Delaware River from Philadelphia (the birthplace of our nation). The region features historical sites such as the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall, and excellent art, natural history and science museums. Home stay capacity of 15-20 Ambassadors.

Enjoy Historical Philadelphia and Delaware Valley:

• Philadelphia PA – Independence Hall, Liberty Bell, Congress Hall and
  walking tour
• Valley Forge PA – National Historic Park and American Revolution Center
• Brandywine Valley DE – Winterthur Museum and Gardens
• Washington Crossing Historical Park NJ / Princeton NJ / Trenton NJ -
  Sculpture Garden

Cost: $297 including all fees
Transportation not included

In the area of independent travel Washington DC, New York or the Amish Country Pennsylvania

See the May 2017 Newsletter for report and photos.


Birmingham, AL Inbound
June 3-9, 2017
Cathy Ignatin, ED - cignatin@hotmail.com

Cathy Ignatin was the Host Coordinator for our inbound group from Birmingham AL. She worked with  Birmingham Ambassador Coordinator Vicki Smith. This club hosted us last year and we had a wonderful week with these gracious people.

Cathy says: Birmingham Inbound Journey was a success, despite various problems. We originally started out with 12 Ambassadors and had two drop out because of illness; the week before the Journey another couple had to drop out due to a serious fall. The arrival of the plane from Birmingham was about 3 hours delayed because of bad storms, but the welcome dinner and the remainder of the Journey went off without a hitch.

Many thanks to all of you who helped me so much to put this together. I only wish we had had more time to show our ambassadors more of Dallas.


Sat. June 3rd: Arrival at DFW delayed by bad weather in the area..
Welcome dinner at Chimney Hill Clubhouse, with club members bringing side dishes to accompany meat provided by the club..

Sun., June 4th - Free day, with option to tour AT&T Stadium tour 11:30 am (organized by edward perez. Most of our sports-loving visitors opted to go on this tour.

Monday, June 5th: Arboretum for garden walk.
Lunch at La Calle Dolce, 1925 Skillman at Live Oak
Small group dinners in homes

Tuesday, June 6th: McKinney Day
Bill Smith’s Diner for brunch followed by a driving tour of early McKinney homes
Exploration and shopping at McKinney Square
Wine tasting at Lone Star Winery on the Square
Small group dinners in homes

Wed. June 7th: Downtown Dallas Day
Union Station start of our DART bus tour. Stops included Pioneer Plaza, Thanksgiving Square, Arts District, Klyde Warren Park and Dallas Museum of Art where we had lunch.
Afternoon and evening were free to take in more of downtown.
Dinner - Many Ambassadors treated their home hosts to dinner

Thurs. June 8th: Fort Worth Day
Film and tour of the Stockyards, cattle drive of the Longhorn herd and shopping
Sundance Square for lunch at Reata Restaurant
Tour of Sid Richardson Museum of Western Art
Farewell Dinner (Fajita  buffet) at El Fenix in Dallas

Fri. June 9th: Attemped departure but due to more bad weather and flight delays, the group left the following day for home.

This Journey concluded with lots of fun and participation from club members.
See the July 2017 Newsletter for more photos.


Saskatoon, Canada Outbound
August 21-28, 2017 plus optional trip to Canadian Rockies
Paula Rose, ED - paularose2000@hotmail.com

Homestay: Saskatoon Saskatchewan Canada
Dates: Aug 21-28, 2017
2017 Outbound Journey to Saskatoon
Aug 16-21, 2017
Paula Rose, Ambassador Coordinator

Dallas members attending: edward perez, Paula Rose, Jackie and Michael Wald, Cathy Ignatin, Julia Cooper and Gerda Kreyer.

Paula and edward report meeting great people, with good weather and activities in Saskatoon.

They cruised the S. Saskatoon River via riverboat, visited the German Hutterite community (very self-sufficient and contained), learned about the university's Synchrotron (electron accelerator for scientific experiments and more), experienced the culture (including first nations people & Ukrainian immigrants), and ended the week with many new FF Saskatoon friends.

They toured the Synchroton that accelerates electrons to shine "light" on all kinds of objects, materials, foods to better understand their structure and composition.

They visited the Western Development Museum that recreated Saskatchewan "boomtown" and thousands of items from their history - amazing!!!

Young adult Ukrainian dancers performed at Ukrainian Day Festival (lots emigrated from there to Canada in 1800s). Our group enjoyed the dancing, music, crafts and food!

They enjoyed the Canadian gardens, cool weather, blueberries, a visit to a Hutterite colony, and meeting new friends.

Paula Rose, edward perez, Jackie Wald and Michael Wald also took a post-trip to the Canadian Rockies – some beautiful country!

See the September, 2017 Newsletter for photos.


Saskatoon, Canada Inbound
October 16-23, 2017
Patty Niemeyer, ED - peanutpatti1@gmail.com


Please suggest to Patty Niemeyer any other U.S. clubs who might be interested in an mutual exchange with the Dallas club. Contact her at: peanutpatti1@gmail.com.


2018 Exchanges

Contact Information
Postal address: P. O. Box 551151, Dallas, TX 75355
Phone and fax: 214- 699-7574 
E-mail: friendshipforcedallas@yahoo.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FriendshipForceDallas/
Webmaster: mwilliamstxtravel@yahoo.com