Governor tours the Ellis
Gov. Tate Reeves mentioned more than once during his tour of the newly-renovated historic Ellis Theatre last Tuesday how impressed he was and the huge impact the work will have on economic development.
“It’s a great asset for the community now,” Reeves said. “I’m grateful to Marty Stuart’s work in helping to preserve this tremendous asset, and I am very impressed. This looks awesome.”
Reeves took his time inspecting each room, admiring the architecture and design of the building.
“My daughters would have a great time here,” Reeves said as he admired the upstairs balcony.
The governor was in town for an event on March 7 but stopped by the Ellis to tour the building and observe the first completed step in Marty Stuart’s Congress of Country Music.
He toured the entire building and checked out the main stage, the props being used for the theatre’s newest play, “Matilda,” the green room, backstage, and the upstairs balcony seats.
The Ellis Theatre officially reopened to the public on Dec. 8 and concluded the end to Phase 1 of the Marty Stuart Congress of Country Music project, which Reeves has been involved in since his time as Lt. Governor.
Tim Moore, executive director of the Philadelphia-Neshoba Chamber of Commerce and Congress of Country Music board member, said he could tell the governor was fully invested in the tour and his time there meant a lot to him and the theatre.
“I was glad to see the governor was excited about it as we are,” Moore said. “He’s been involved in this project since the very beginning, as he was Lt. Governor all the way back when we first started. He enjoyed coming and seeing the fruits of everything he helped us with from the beginning.”
Moore led the tour along with fellow Congress of Country Music board member Pat Thomasson, Butch Hodgins, who led general construction in the theatre and is a close friend to Marty Stuart, Caleb Paige with Yates Construction, and Ellis Manager Buck Alman.
He said while Reeves was in town for an event, the Ellis tour was something he wanted to do personally.
“It was really exciting to see,” Moore said. “Just the fact he wanted to see it speaks volumes. He didn’t have to come see it, but he did, and that really meant a lot.”