Clermont Arts and Recreation Center holds grand opening

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CLERMONT, Fla. —

Clermont residents have a new place to play.

The new Clermont Arts and Recreation Center held a grand opening Friday.

The center includes the largest performance hall and conference center in Lake County, swimming pools, and a gym.

The city paid millions for the building that used to be a church.

Hundreds showed up to witness the grand opening.

The city paid $6.3 million to purchase the facility, which used to be the Celebration of Praise Church.

But when the congregation fell on hard times the city was able to buy it.

The city anticipates this will be a major economic driver for the city and region.

"This is the first time the city has invested into and arts and recreation center. We always thought we needed an indoor gym, we needed a pool, we need rooms for people to rent for programs. It's worth every penny," said city manager Darren Gray.

 The new police station will also be added to the property, which may open in the next couple of years.