City of Stillwater Community Center
The City of Stillwater Community Center, 315 W. 8th Ave., serves as homebase for the Stillwater Sister Cities Program (SSCP). Support staff is available to answer questions or give tours of the Kameoka Room or the International Friendship Garden.
Over the years, Stillwater has received many beautiful gifts from the citizens of Kameoka. As part of the 20th Anniversary Celebration, the Stillwater Sister Cities Council created a permanent home to showcase the objects, which include folk art and museum-quality items.
Located on the first floor with windows facing the International Friendship Garden, the Kameoka Room features lighted curio cases, walls covered with tapestries, paintings and documents and a display of two kimonos and a hapi coat (a traditional Japanese straight-sleeved coat).
The Kameoka Room is also available as a conference room for community organizations.
The Samurai Display
In 2006, a custom-designed cabinet was built to display a miniature suit of a samurai’s armor, which was presented to Stillwater as a gift in 1987 during the program’s Second Anniversary Celebration. The armor, which is typical of armor worn in the 15th or 16th century, is the focal point of the Community Center’s West Lobby.
The display includes a small katana (a samurai sword) placed handle-down in a stand. Katanas are placed this way to indicate a peaceful intent, while katanas placed upright indicate a readiness to fight. Behind the armor is a pair of lanterns with Kameoka’s symbol on them “to light the future of our friendship.”
International Friendship Garden
Located at the City of Stillwater Community Center, the International Friendship Garden was built in 1997 by the Kameoka Landscape Gardeners Association to celebrate the program’s Tenth Anniversary Celebration.
The gardeners purchased and shipped 22 tons of materials, tools and supplies to Stillwater, and over a two-week period they constructed a traditional Japanese garden. They also built a small tea garden at the Oklahoma Botanical Garden at Oklahoma State University.
The beautiful International Friendship Garden was formally dedicated to the citizens of Stillwater on Sunday, July 26, 1998, with a delegation from Kameoka in attendance.
The gardeners made a return visit in 2005 as part of the 20th Anniversary Celebration.
Kameoka Trail Corridor
Named in honor of Stillwater’s sister city, Kameoka, Japan, Kameoka Trail Corridor is a multi-use bike and walk trail. Currently, the trail consists of a paved three-mile loop around Boomer Lake and several segments, some unpaved, that lead southeast to Hoyt Grove Park.