Manatee commission to contribute $250,000 to Manatee Players theater

MANATEE -- The Manatee County Commission today formally authorized a $250,000 contribution to the new Manatee Performing Arts Center in Bradenton.

The money will be matched with $250,000 that the Manatee Players' organization has already raised from ticket buyers, said Janene Witham, executive director of the Manatee Players.

The theater troupe still needs to raise $940,000 in order to open in March with a production of "Miss Saigon," she said.

County commissioners unanimously OK'd an amendment to the Tourist Development Plan to authorize use of tourist tax dollars for the one-time contribution.

The performing arts center, which is still under construction, is at 502 Third Ave. W., Bradenton.