Opp Prepares For 53rd Annual Rattlesnake Rodeo

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By Catalina Trivino

While we're only hours away for the gates to open, rodeo coordinators say there's still a lot left to do to get ready for Opp's biggest yearly event: the 53rd annual Rattlesnake Rodeo.

The stage is almost set in Opp's Channel-Lee Stadium. It's all for the thousands of people coordinators expect to be sitting on the stands.

"We've got inflatables, we've got all kinds of games for the kids to play, we've got food vendors with all kinds of food to eat that's excellent and good fellowship with just standing and talking," Said one of the event coordinators, Charles Willis.

 

There will be live entertainment and arts and crafts all weekend long, including country bands like Little Texas and Steel Magnolia.

But you can't come to the Rattlesnake Rodeo without the slithery reptiles stealing the spotlight. Rodeo Coordinator, Charles Willis says spectators will not only get to pet and race the snakes, but also learn about them.

"Ken Howell will be milking snakes and showing you how that's done, the importance of venom, he'll explain what a rattlesnake does in its habitat and it's value to nature," Said Willis.

 

And of course, you can't forget about the food. You'll notice more than 100 food vendors this year.

"We have Greek foods, fish, anything you want! We have Hardees, it has hamburgers, we have some that have the Nathan's Hotdogs, we have peanuts, we have the Coldstone creamery ice cream," Said rodeo volunteer, Liz Lindsey.

But if there's one thing you just can't leave without doing...

"And that's try some fried rattlesnake meat. And that'll be served as long as it lasts!" Said Willis.

Gates open at 3 p.m. on Friday and 8 a.m. Saturday. Tickets are $20 a day, but if you arrive before 3 p.m. Saturday, the entry fee will be $10.

You can also buy a two-day pass for $30 a person. Children under six get in for free.

For more information on the rodeo, log onto www.rattlesnakerodeo.com.

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