Whigham Community Club prepares for big day

The serpents with rattles for tails will be making themselves known Saturday at the 54th Annual Rattlesnake Roundup sponsored by the Whigham Community Club.
For those not into snakes, there will also be plenty of arts and crafts vendors on hand selling their wares and food peddlers will have a variety of favorite festival fare.
The day begins at 9 a.m. with free parking available adjacent to the “Snake Grounds,” located on U.S. 84 in Whigham, and a $2 entry fee to the grounds.
The 40 members of the Whigham Community Club are preparing for a cool but sunny day Saturday says Greg Ponder, club president. “It looks like Friday is going to be the rough day and Saturday’s going to warm up some. We’re looking forward to a really great day.” As of Tuesday, forecasts were calling for Friday’s highs to be in the low 40s and Saturday’s highs  to be in the mid-50s.
There are some changes from last year in the activities of the day.
This year, snake exhibitions will be conducted by Rebecca Tucker of Yarbrough’s Educational Reptile Program, an Alabama based family-owned business, which has conducted reptile shows since 1962.
Ponder says Mrs. Tucker will bring her own rattlesnakes and exotic animals such as lizards, tortoises, turtles and giant snakes. Mr. Ponder says Tucker has participated in Rattlesnake Roundup in the past with smaller demonstrations, but this year will be the only one presenting rattlesnake shows. He says snake milkings will not be part of the show as in years past.
Also, the snake exhibitions will take place in the main pavilion on the snake grounds instead of inside the usual “Snake Ring,” which will now be the location of all music performances. Ponder says the pavilion is the only metal building on the grounds.
Because the number of snake hunters who participate has dwindled, the amount of cash prizes is dropping as well. The hunter with the most snakes will win $200 this year, second place will win $100, and third place will win $50. The hunter with the largest snake will win $100.
Some activities that are remaining the same include a zip line, plus other activities for children including animal rides and games.
And, shopping. There are 85 arts and crafts vendors who have reserved 117 vendor spots with some of those vendors reserving more than one area, and 15 food vendors.
Club leaders want to remind all visitors to leave their pets at home. Only hunters with snakes and official demonstrators are allowed to bring animals to Rattlesnake Roundup.
Proceeds from the Roundup are used to support Scouting in Whigham, clubs at Whigham School, house fire victims in the community, and some special projects.

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