Desoto County News

Ag Center and Arena groundbreaking event held

Groundbreaking was held Friday afternoon, Aug. 25 that begins the two-year construction of  the DeSoto County Ag Center and Arena, located at 1170 Star Landing Road in Nesbit, west of Highway 51.

County officials say the Ag Center will place a heavy emphasis on the agriculture of DeSoto County, featuring traditional as well as innovative agricultural practices and methods. But there will be much more.  

It will have classrooms, learning labs, conference and convention space, stables, indoor and outdoor arenas, walking and equestrian trails, ball fields, tennis and pickle ball courts, and an RV park.

Supervisor Mark Gardner related, during remarks at Friday’s groundbreaking, that plans for it to come about have gone on for years.  

“We did an exhaustive study with our partners at Mississippi State and we found that this was a great project so then we started trying to find the money,” Gardner said.  

Agriculture plays an important part in the county.  About 400 farms are located and millions of bushels of corn and soybeans are produced each year.  DeSoto County is ranked 11th in the state for fruits and vegetables and it is the agriculture background the county wants to support and showcase.  

“It’s for the people of DeSoto County, it’s what we want to see and we invite each and every one to use it, continue to come to it and enjoy it,” said Supervisor Michael Lee.  

Supervisor Ray Denison added the other amenities should make it an attraction to everyone.

“One of the things near and dear to my heart is a walking trail, a 3.1 mile trail that can be a multi-purpose trail and then trails through the woods. It will be handicap-accessible, and can be used for running, biking, push strollers, (roller) skate, and all of the above, and more.  Another thing that we will offer is a nature trail for horseback riding and it will encompass a radius around this whole property of 200 acres.”

It will also become a one-stop shop of sorts for many agricultural services; the facility will house offices for DeSoto County Extension Service, 4-H, DeSoto County Soil and Water Conservation District, and Natural Resources Conservation Service.

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