Peterborough's Neat Connections & History With Its Sister City Ann Arbor, Michigan

Our sister city Ann Arbor is about a six hour (575 km) drive from us and is located in Michigan. It has been our sister city since 1983.

“It lets people have an excuse for getting to know each other in ways they never would otherwise,” said former Ann Arbor Mayor Edward Pierce. We found this to be very true when we visited the city recently. When shop owners asked where we were from, we would say “Your sister city, Peterborough” with a slight grin. While most residents didn’t recall the link at first, it was certainly an ice-breaker which lead to further conversation.

Below is more of the backstory and the connections to Ann Arbor...


The Arborough Games—a cute play on words combining Arbor and Peterborough—started in 1982 and was a biennial event that took turns being hosted between Ann Arbor and Peterborough. Sadly, the games ended after the year 2000 due to lack of volunteers and youth participation.


The movie Jumper (starring Canadian actor, Hayden Christensen) was filmed primarily in Ann Arbor. Two back-to-back scenes at around the 3:50 minute mark of the movie were filmed in Peterborough, however.

A scene within the Peterborough Library at 345 Alymer Street North (also shown in the trailer above) shows the main character teleporting into the library, then opening a book to reveil an Ann Arbor Library book stamp (but we know better!).

Ann Arbor doesn’t have a water tower, and Peterborough was used as a stand-in. Our water tower (and view of Kenneth Avenue, filmed from Sherbrooke Street) with the "Ann Arbor" name digitally added to our water tower was briefly shown after the Library scene.

A Fairy Door at TeaHaus located at 204 N 4th Ave, Ann Arbor, MI

A Fairy Door at TeaHaus located at 204 N 4th Ave, Ann Arbor, MI


Fairy doors have been another connection between Peterborough and Ann Arbor with there being numerous tiny doors appearing in both cities.

-->> Share your connections with our sister city on our Facebook page post.

Written and Photographed by Evan Holt

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