City prepares open house for new community center

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 9, 2000

Area residents will have a chance to tour the new community center — the Natchez City Center — at an open house Wednesday.

The $480,000 renovation of the old Service Motor Co. building — a 1946 Buick dealership — is scheduled to be finished, barring any final touch-ups, today, said Walter Tipton, director of the Natchez Office of Tourism Management.

&uot;That’s what we call just in time,&uot; he said.

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Architect Dan Dillard of Waycaster & Associates said the community center is &uot;substantially complete,&uot; although there may be some additional items needed, such as paint touch-ups.

The city center will be the first finished product in a three-part Convention Center Complex. The Natchez Board of Aldermen voted late last year to borrow $12 million in bond funds for the community center, renovation of the Natchez City Auditorium and construction of a new downtown convention center.

The board of aldermen has begun to advertise for bids for the auditorium renovation and expects to let bids on convention center construction later this summer.

Tipton said the public is invited to the open house to tour the city center.

&uot;This is something we’re doing to introduce the community to that facility so that people who are interested in renting it can act quickly,&uot; Tipton said.

The first scheduled event in the city center is the Natchez Literary Celebration, which will be held June 1-3.

Tipton said 10 other events are already scheduled, including a food and home craft show in July and two wedding receptions.

Anyone interested in reserving the Natchez City Center should call 446-6345.