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Shake, rattle and roll: 56th Annual Rattlesnake Roundup kicks off with media day

Published On: Feb 21 2014 08:10:36 PM CST
Updated On: Feb 21 2014 08:20:36 PM CST
SWEETWATER, Texas -

The 56th Annual Rattlesnake Roundup in Sweetwater is just around the corner.

KTXS got an up-close look Friday during Media Day at what people can expect to see at the event.

Touted as the world's largest rattlesnake roundup, the event features snake-handling demonstrations, the Miss Snake Charmer Pageant, various food vendors, and if it pleases your palette, deep-fried rattlesnake.

Long-time snake hunter, Riley Sawyers, explained why they're paying more money per pound for snakes this year.

"During this time, other buyers come into town and try to undercut the market, so we try to set the market price high enough that maybe we can avoid that from happening," Sawyers said.

Media were shown how to handle snakes safely, how to milk snakes for venom, and they went along on a snake hunt, where snakes were gassed out of their dens.