Ascension Parish almost debt free on Lamar Dixon Expo Center
Ascension Parish is close to paying off its loan on the Lamar Dixon Expo Center.
The parish will pay it off sooner than expected, thanks to state and federal grants. Parish President Tommy Martinez recently received a check for nearly $4.7 million from the federal government and will use it to pay down the money owed on Lamar Dixon.
The facility and land are likely worth more than $50 million, but the parish got them for $7.5 million.
With 112 acres of free space at Lamar Dixon, the expo center will be used for more community activities.
“We've got plans every three or four months to have major groups, major entertainment from around the nation,” said Ascension Parish council chairman Pat Bell.
Martinez said the center will also be used to host festivals. Parish residents said they are grateful it now belongs to them.
“I think it will do well for the community,” said Vicki Lanoux.
“Now, we can go in there and go fishing because at first they wouldn't let us fish,” said Artemise Lewis.
The Lamar Dixon payoff comes at no cost to tax payers.
The first big event at Lamar Dixon is the four-day "Festival of Festivals,” and WBRZ is sponsoring the event. Festivities begin Nov. 11 and end Nov. 14.