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Friends gain $150K for livestock arena

Stanly County received help this week toward reaching its goal of having a livestock arena.

The Stanly County Friends of the Agri-Civic Center received a $150,000 grant from The Cannon Foundation for construction of the Stanly County Farm Bureau Livestock Arena at the Stanly County Agri-Civic Center.

Construction of the 2,400-square-foot building was put on hold by the county commissioners last summer in hopes of raising more non-county funds.

“Since that time the Livestock Arena Planning Committee has identified some additional sources of funding, including the recent Cannon Foundation gift,” County Manager Andy Lucas said.

Lucas said the commissioners have called a special meeting for 6 p.m. Sept. 23 at the Agri-Civic Center to meet with the Livestock Arena Planning Committee. They will receive an update on the project and fundraising efforts.

The projected cost of the arena is $3.5 million, with just over $1.5 million raised or pledged so far.

Organizers have said an arena is needed to be able to host agriculture demonstrations and workshops, political and religious events, art exhibits and performing arts activities and private and family functions.