Wiregrass Newsroom: Construction complete on new Enterprise Civic Center

Posted by: Melissa Johnson - bio | email

Enterprise, AL (WSFA) - Strong storms are certainly no stranger to the city of Enterprise.

Back in 2007, a tornado destroyed the high school, killing eight students, and late last year, another twister destroyed the city's Civic Center.

Now, after months of construction, a new Civic Center is complete, and senior citizens especially are celebrating.  That's because their Senior Center was housed in the old Civic Center.

Margie Nungester remembers that day well.  "We were going to have lunch, and all of a sudden, it was just very dark, and we finally looked outside.  The parking lot, it looked like the school did when the big tornado hit."

Luckily for them,  no one was hurt.  Margie said, "All that damage, and no one was injured.   It was just out of this world.  We're blessed."

Since then, they've been meeting in a temporary place, but they'll have more than 5,000 square feet of space at the new Civic Center.

Crews spent Thursday putting the finishing touches on the landscaping.

Construction manager Ray Bickley says the city also benefits from the facility.  He said, "It's something that we didn't have with the old civic center.  It's very nice; it's very large, and we're going to attract people from miles around."

While the center is closed to the public until its grand opening next month, those who have been able to take a peek inside say it's pretty impressive.

Bickley says it has a 1,600 square foot stage, a 2,100 square foot dance floor, a classroom that can seat up to 24 people, and a recital area that can hold 1,500.

But for Margie, she says it's the little things she's looking forward to the most.   She says, while laughing, that they've been joking about being able to have a hot lunch in the new facility because they'll have a full kitchen.

The grand opening for the center is September 13th.

The mayor is trying to keep the interior a surprise until then.