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Happy birthday, Snooty! (with gallery)

BRADENTON

It’s a grueling schedule for any 62-year-old: six to eight presentations a day, and not a moment’s privacy.

Snooty the manatee seemed to take it in stride Saturday at his 62nd birthday celebration, guzzling down pounds of romaine lettuce, mixed greens, carrots and sweet potatoes under the adoring eyes of his fans.

“He’s kind of like the friendly mascot of Manatee County,” said Katie Granberg, 17, as she painted a delicate flower on a little girl’s cheek at the South Florida Museum.

Granberg volunteered her time for the manatee she remembers seeing on field trips in elementary school.

“Kids learn a lot about manatees in school, but being able to see one in real life is a big opportunity for them,” she said.

“Snooty knows there’s something going on, for sure,” said aquarium director Marilyn Margold.

“He may nap a little bit more next week than usual, but he’s out there for each and every presentation, and he does like it.”

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