PERRY, Ga. — On Saturday, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture and Houston County-native Sonny Perdue took a break from Washington D.C. to come home and help open a building for something he's passionate about.

The former governor of Georgia was honored at the Georgia National Fairgrounds in Perry with a new arena that now has his name on it.

"Today is a good celebration of a very beautiful day. The best thing about it is to hear that the building is already being used," Perdue said.

A number of people stepped to the podium to share memories and talk about who he is as a leader, including his cousin, U.S. Senator David Perdue.

"It was Sonny Perdue who went to the White House and made darn sure that we got $16 billion for farmers," he said.

Perdue says it's an honor to have an arena named after him, especially somewhere that's near and dear to him. 

"This is home first of all, that's really what this means," he said.

The arena is more than 59,000 square feet and has over 450 seats for spectators.

Perdue says the building has been in the works for a long time, and now that it's open, he wants it to be a place where families can enjoy a show and kids can learn how farming works.

"This is not a one time a year deal, these facilities are used 52 weeks out of the year, and it's really about kids doing projects and understanding what it takes," he said.

At the end of the day, Perdue says he's just happy to see people use the building.

"I just want to thank the board and the people who made this possible. It was a real honor, I'm not one to have my name on anything, but this is a real honor for me, and I'm very gratefulm" he said.

Perdue was also gifted an honorary livestock ambassador belt buckle and a plaque with his accomplishments.

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