ELIDA — People were able to wander the hallways and view the first-ever auditorium at Elida High School's open house and dedication Sunday.From 1 to 5 p.m., the Elida community was able to tour the new high school, and a dedication was held in the school's gymnasium. The ceremony featured speeches from school and community officials, architects involved in the building project and the senior class president. “It was really impressive to see how many people from the community came out to be a part of the dedication ceremony,” Superintendent Don Diglia said.Diglia, who gave the keynote address, said he encourages community members to continue to be involved with the high school, as the building is also for them. The 169,000-square-foot building located west of the middle school near Baxter Street boasts a 670-seat auditorium and 1,200-seat gymnasium. It also includes an auxiliary gym, media center with computer lab, an outside practice field for the marching band, geothermal heating and cooling and air handlers that circulate fresh air.“This is a lot nicer than what we had,” Tammy Smith said. She and her husband graduated from the old Elida High School and have a 15-year-old daughter, Jessica, who is a freshman this year.Smith said she saw the high school when picking up Jessica's class schedule and thinks the layout of the new school makes it easier to find classes. Her daughter agreed.“You don't have to go from the third floor all the way to the first floor to find a class,” Jessica said.The $39.75 million project was supported by voters in 2008 by a bond issue that took three tries to pass. The former building, built in 1916, was 95 years old, and its gymnasium doubled as an auditorium.Alexandra Hambleton, student council president and senior class president, spoke at the dedication ceremony about how she missed the legacy of the old school, but not its pitfalls.“None of them made the learning process any easier for us,” she said.Diglia said hallway cameras, and natural lighting, fresh airflow and temperature control in classrooms are a few of the improvements made to enhance student achievement and safety.“This building is just head and shoulders above that building simply because of all the new technology,” he said.While he said the task of building the new school was not without its challenges, Diglia said the community and staff support helped make the new school what it is today. He spoke of it also as a place of promise for the future. “The story of this building, our building, has just begun,” he said.