Croatian prime minister to visit Gig Harbor

Gig Harbor will host a very special visit this month.

Zoran Milanović, prime minister of Croatia, will visit Gig Harbor on Sept. 28 to experience its rich Croatian heritage. The city invites residents to welcome Milanović from 9:15 and 10 a.m. at Skansie Brothers Park. The city will provide small Croatian flags to the public, who are encouraged to welcome him.

“We would love to have our Croatian community come out and welcome him,” Williams said.

Milanović will see Gig Harbor via the trolley and then will attend a private luncheon in the city.

According to croatiaweek.com, Milanović is visiting San Francisco, Seattle and New York to meet with IT professionals. Croatia is in the midst of bolstering its technology exports. While in Seattle, Milanović will meet with Microsoft.

Council member Ken Malich, who is of Croatian descent, is excited about the visit. It’s isn’t every day that someone like this visits.

“This is truly once in history,” he said.

The details are still being worked out with the prime minister’s office, Williams said, but the general plan is to greet Milanović and take him on a tour of Gig Harbor.

In the late-19th Century, Croatian immigrants settled in Gig Harbor, establishing the city’s fishing industry. The city’s Croatian cultural heritage is visible in the historic net sheds that line the waterfront.