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WASHINGTON (AP) - The Kennedy Center says it has raised an additional $40 million in gifts and pledges to fund the first major expansion of the memorial to President John F. Kennedy.

The performing arts center plans to add pavilions housing rehearsal halls and classrooms, a memorial garden to honor Kennedy and an outdoor video wall to simulcast performances.

The gifts announced Thursday bring the fundraising total to $90 million of the $125 million project. Kennedy Center Chairman David Rubenstein made an earlier pledge of $50 million when the project was announced in January.

New gifts from about a dozen donors include a leading pledge from Kennedy Center Treasurer Michael Neidorff and the Centene Charitable Foundation.

A groundbreaking is planned in 2014 for the expansion. Construction is expected to be complete in 2017.


(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
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