Austin-Oita Sister City 25th Anniversary Celebration

November 14, 2015

Volunteers put in many hours to make hosting the delegation from Austin's sister city Oita, Japan at Zilker Botanical Garden a reality.

The room was beautifully decorated with a Mexican theme.

A final wiping of the pot to make a perfect display.

The Texas State Bonsai Exhibit had two display tables set up in the banquet room.

The Texas Live Oak in the middle is provided by Pat Ware from their Central Texas Bonsai Exhibit.

Pat Ware, our original delegate to Oita was there with a certificate and a scrapbook of memories from her previous visits.


Last minute spot light adjustment to showcase the Texas Live Oak.

Even the library was nicely decorated.

Banquet room all ready for the delegation and honorable guests.

Meanwhile, the guests were charmed by a Mariachi Band followed by a tour of the garden.

Volunteers ready to greet the guests.

 Both Austin's Mayor, Steve Adler and Oita's Mayor, Kiichiro Sato and many Austin City council members were present.

Following along the path past the Taniguchi Garden leading to the future site of The Texas State Bonsai Exhibit.

A mini display consisted of a boxwood, a bald cypress and a cedar elm were set up in the future proposed entrance area.

Volunteers getting ready to greet the guests and hand out souvenir bonsai pins.

Guests were very impressed by the explanation of TTSBE future exhibit site.

Talking with Austin City Council Member, Ann Kitchen.

Tree planting ceremony and speech by our former mayor, Frank Cooksey.

After the tea ceremony, guests were treated to a nice lunch with entertainment by Taiko drummers from Austin Taiko and a flamenco guitarist.

Thank you speech by Oita Mayor, Kiichiro Sato.

Drummers from Tesshin Daiko.

TTSBE Board Members with Austin Mayor, Steve Adler and Oita Mayor, Kiichiro Sato.

The event came together successfully with all the help of our wonderful volunteers from TTSBE, the Austin Area Garden Council, Garden greeters and docents.  It marks another giant step forward to strengthening the process of building our exhibit at Zilker Park.  A job well done, everyone!