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TECO's Manatee Center celebrates 25 years | Events

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TECO's Manatee Center celebrates 25 years
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TECO's Manatee Center celebrates 25 years

Apollo Beach, Florida -- The Tampa Electric Manatee Viewing Center is celebrating its 25th anniversary with two days of fun for the public.

Marking 25 years as a refuge for the endangered manatee, the nature-watching destination and environmental education center has been visited by more than three million people.

TECO is hoping to draw a few more for the celebration, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Jan. 15 and 16.

The celebration will include activities for visitors of all ages, including arts and crafts tables, children's games, Radio Disney, giveaways, appearances by local professional sports mascots and more.

Those are all in addition to the center's regular features, which include a hurricane simulator, interactive displays about the manatee and its habitat, a 900-foot tidal walk, butterfly gardens, an expanded gift shop and more.

"We're excited to celebrate 25 years of dedication from people committed to the future of the manatee and its habitat - and who have worked tirelessly to teach the public how to protect these incredible mammals," said Wendy Anastasiou, environmental specialist at the Manatee Viewing Center.

"Visitors love the manatees, which are here because of Big Bend Power Station."
When the water temperature of Tampa Bay is 68 degrees or colder, manatees gather in the warm-water discharge canal of the power plant, sometimes by the hundreds. Visitors can see the mammals up close from the center's multiple boardwalks and vantage points.

Visit the Manatee Viewing Center online or call (813) 228-4289 for more information.

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