#5 - Teahouse Island--Nakajima
To the west, across a narrow cove and dobashi, or earthen bridge, is Teahouse Island. At the end of the bridge stands a snow viewing lantern, yukimi-doro, a gift from St. Louis's sister city of Suwa, Japan. The teahouse itself, a gift from Missouri's sister state of Nagano, Japan, is sacred in Japanese culture. This soan, or "farm hut" style teahouse, was built in Japan, reassembled here by Japanese craftsmen, and dedicated with a Shinto ceremony in 1977. The teahouse is screened by hedges to create a sense of remoteness. Except for special ceremonies, the teahouse and teahouse island are closed to the public.