ISHPEMING — Students at Westwood High School in Ishpeming have some brand new facilities to help further educate them in the art department.

A ribbon cutting ceremony was held tonight to celebrate the grand opening of the renovated media center and theatre. This $1.5 million project started this summer and replaced the original facilities and equipment from the 1970’s.

The upgraded space will help students with practicing for group presentations along with improving their artistic abilities.

“We’ve got brand new trap doors that kids are able to use, beautiful curtains, and back stage effects that are going to enable us to have professional level performances. It changes the game for students, especially as they apply for college and look at engaging the next level for them,” said English/Drama Teacher at Westwood High School, Jaime Vanenkevort.

The renovations of these facilities would not have been possible without the generous grants from local establishments.

“One of the things we’re thankful for besides the sinking fund millage, which the community really supports is we got a $100,000 grant from Eagle Mine’s parent company, Lundin Mining and Cliffs Natural Resources through the Marquette Community grant and we really appreciate that because it helped us complete the project,” said NICE Community Schools Superintendent, Bryan DeAugustine.

The first performance in the theatre was held after the ribbon cutting ceremony to give everyone a peak at the new space.