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Gabrielle Jansen / The Outlook Gov. Kay Ivey, left, presents RES prinicpal Marcus Dent, right, with a book on the Alabama Bicentennial.

It was all student-led applause as Gov. Kay Ivey walked into Radney Elementary School’s gym Monday. Ivey briefly visited RES as part of the Alabama Bicentennial celebration this year.

Ivey is visiting one school in each of the state’s 67 counties and picked Radney from Tallapoosa County. She was there quickly before heading out to Chambers County for another bicentennial visit.

“2019 is turning out to be a very exciting year as we celebrate the bicentennial of our great state thanks to those like you being here,” Ivey said.

The school band learned to read music and play instruments five weeks ago to perform for Ivey. The band played “Hard Rock Blues.”

Ivey was also presented with art from the students including a painting with the state Capitol with Alabama’s flag over it.

Ivey presented to Dent the book “Alabama My Home Sweet Home” by Charles Ghinga for the school’s library. The book is about a girl discovering what makes Alabama special in its 200 years of statehood.

“After taking office in 2017, one of my first public events was to kick off the bicentennial with a speech in Mobile, Alabama,” Ivey said. “We knew that we needed to ensure that we included our students in the celebration, so we spread the excitement in every corner of Alabama.”

Ivey said she challenged students to help make Alabama a better place last year and the fine arts projects are important for preserving the state’s roots.

Alexander City Schools participated in the bicentennial in the spring with its fine arts showcase being Alabama themed. The showcase was an official Alabama Bicentennial event.

“Folks you took that challenge to heart creating a project that encourages fine arts, specifically Alabama folk art and landscapes,” Ivey said to the school’s students. “This ensures that as time goes on we never forget where we came from. This project embodies what our state bicentennial is all about and it makes me proud that Radney Elementary has placed such a high priority on this.”

RES principal Marcus Dent said it was an honor to be a part of the bicentennial celebration.

“Anytime that we could be recognized for bringing community and classrooms together, that is a wonderful, wonderful honor,” Dent said.

After the presentation, Ivey took photos with sixth-grade teacher Michelle Tuggle’s class, the school band and the Alexander City Board of Education, Dent, assistant principal Dr. Brittany Duncan, state Sen. Clyde Chambliss (R-Prattville) and state Rep. Ed Oliver (R-Dadeville).