It's the moment many across the Mid-Western region have been waiting for.
On Saturday, August 7 at 9am, the doors to the Mudgee Arts Precinct will open to the public.
After the idea for the precinct was put to the Mid-Western Regional Council in 2016 via community consultation, the facility went on to garner $8.1 million in support from the NSW Government, highlighting the need for the project.
Mid-Western Regional Council mayor, Des Kennedy said the facility is an addition to the many state of the art facilities across the region.
"The Mudgee Arts Precinct is a great facility and at last it's built," Mr Kennedy said.
"Back in 2016 we engaged in community consultation to see what residents would like for our region and an art gallery was fifth or six on the wishlist.
"We have lots of sporting facilities, pools and other facilities across the Mid-Western region so it's good to see that now we have a state of the art arts precinct, it's been needed over the years."
Mr Kennedy added that while the facility will undoubtedly be a major draw card for the region's tourism, it is also an asset that will be utilised by residents for years to come.
"We have a big art culture in town," Mr Kennedy said.
"When the old preschool behind the art gallery is complete and transformed into a workshop space by the end of the year, people can participate in workshops and lessons. It'll be something people can do.
"We will have displays over the course of the year with artists from all over the countryside."
The opening will coincide with the inaugural exhibition by Mudgee-born artist and Archibald Prize winner, Guido Maestri.
Stories From Homedale is a series of landscapes painted by Maestri whilst in the Mid-Western region.
Those attending the opening are reminded to adhere to all COVID-19 measures including wearing masks, using the QR sign-in code and participating in social distancing.
"It's a shame we can't have a fanfare opening but I'm sure it'll be chock-a-block on Saturday with people having a browse through," Mr Kennedy said.
"Of course COVID restrictions will apply but there isn't a great rush for everyone to hit the place all at once, we want people to browse with ease.
"A big thank you to the NSW Government for all of the funding that has seen this arts precinct become a reality.
"It'll be there forever and a day."
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