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October 26, 2016  -   Daily Journal  /  Elvis Express Radio
After more than four years and more than $7 million, the renovation and expansion of the Elvis Birthplace and Museum is complete.

No other plans are in the works, but executive director Dick Guyton said, “Now it’s time to maintain it.”

The third and final phase of the renovation was centered around the lake and surrounding area. The work added a water fountain, a new paved walkway around the lake, several
benches along the path and replacement of the old bridge.

The lake was drained and filled for the work.

“But what we don’t have is a lot of water,” Guyton said. “It’s about 10 inches below normal, so we could use some rain.”

The first phase of the project, unveiled in August 2012, added a new 126-seat theater and a 75-seat outdoor amphitheater.

The theater is part of an event center that includes a conference room, display area, exhibit hall, green room for entertainers, administrative offices and a smaller entertainment

The second phase of expansion, completed last year, added two Elvis statues, a memorial wall and pavilion, a separate picnic pavilion and a winding walkway from the
amphitheater to the overlook and a new parking lot.

About 80,000 people visit the Birthplace and Museum annually, with about 45 percent of the visitors coming from overseas.