Link Centre venue revamps Concert Hall

By M. Scott Morris/NEMS Daily Journal

TUPELO – Crews are performing $150,000 worth of renovations to the Link Centre Concert Hall.
Work began Monday, and it’s expected to continue until mid-September.
“We have a wedding scheduled for Sept. 11,” said Melanie Deas, Link Centre’s executive director. “We want everything finished by Sept. 10.”
The project is funded by a $90,000 Building Fund for the Arts grant from the Mississippi Arts Commission. Link Centre had to raise an additional $60,000 to match the grant, and $50,000 of that came from the E.R. Carpenter Foundation.
Deas said the Concert Hall, which was the sanctuary of the old Harrisburg Baptist Church, was built in 1948. The building has “settled” since then, she said.
“We’re going to pour a new foundation for the balcony and jack the floor back up,” Deas said.
Pews have been removed and most were donated to Life Changing Ministries in Tupelo. New pews will be installed when the foundation work is complete.
Link Centre also received $150,000 to update light fixtures, as well as heating and cooling units, with more efficient models.
That grant was part of the Mississippi Job Protection through Energy Economic Development program. The grant requires a 25 percent match, so Link Centre needs to raise a total $50,000 to cover the cost of the work.
“We already have $10,000,” Deas said. “It’s a great opportunity because we get $3 for every $1 we raise.”

Contact M. Scott Morris at (662) 678-1589 or scott.morris@djournal.com.