HANCOCK COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - The sun shone down as officials cut the ribbon to the much awaited Hancock Performing Arts Center Saturday morning.
Parents, students and teachers from all over the county gathered at the 24,620 square foot facility to enjoy several performances.
Fifth grader Allie Anglin performed first, singing 'Proud to Be an American' and 'I Will Always Love You'.
"I was very nervous. I've sang at school and at church before, but it was different doing it there," said Anglin. "It's a very cool place. It's awesome."
School choirs from all over Hancock County broke in the new stage, which features a state-of-the art LED lighting and sound system
"I'm so proud of our community for getting together and realizing a dream," said Alan Dedeaux, Hancock County Superintendent, "It's critical that we continue to promote the arts in our schools."
The $8.2 million dollar building, which seats up to 850 people, broke ground in August 2014 and will be the primary stage for both the Hancock School District and the county.
"It will also be a resource that we will be able to open up to the entire community to help build the performing arts area of our county," said Hancock County Chamber Executive Director Tish Williams.
The center is available to rent throughout the year, and will showcase both local and visiting artists.