A ribbon-cutting ceremony has been scheduled for the recently-opened downtown pavilion, a public-private facility in Sedalia.

The partnership between the City of Sedalia and developer Furnell Companies created an outdoor venue space in downtown Sedalia that was announced 13 months ago.

It is hoped that 20 events per year, organized through Sedalia Parks & Rec, will occur at the site in the 200 block of South Ohio. That includes major events such as the Scott Joplin International Ragtime Foundation Festival, which was canceled the last two years due to COVID. This year's Joplin Fest is scheduled for June 2- 4.

It is hoped that the “Downtown Pavilion Project” will lure more people to the downtown area as a destination.

The shelter and restrooms will remain open to the public at all times when a specific event is not taking place at the pavilion, according to a press release from the City of Sedalia.

“By doing it as a public-private partnership, we were able to stretch the public tax dollars much further, while also leveraging private investment to provide more benefit to the public in general,” the release said. “Simply put, together we are able to accomplish more.”

In its press release, Furnell Companies Vice President Erica Eisenmenger noted that the venue space would occupy approximately 3100 square feet, and would feature an open-air event stage, restrooms, preparation and dressing room areas, as well as access to off-street parking.

The ribbon-cutting at 200 South Ohio is scheduled for Thursday, May 19 at 12 p.m., according to the Sedalia Area Chamber of Commerce.

The Pavilion came in handy and was used during the recent Ukraine Festival, which drew hundreds of people to downtown Sedalia on April 24.

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