Manatee Performing Arts Center opens

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BRADENTON-- It took seven years, but finally, the Manatee County Performing Arts Center opened its doors Thursday night.

The $16 million, 38,000 square foot venue hosted an invitation only performance of Miss Saigon for donors and volunteers with the Center. The main auditorium seats 380 people. Another, smaller stage seats up to 100.

"This building will provide for us some of the greatest entertainment opportunities and some new things people have never seen," said Janene Witham, the Center's Executive Director.

A larger celebration will take place this August when the Manatee Players begin their season.