54th annual rodeo rattles into town next weekend

Published 12:00 am Saturday, April 5, 2014

Eastern Diamondback rattlesnakes have been rattling since the dawn of time, but they have been a main attraction in Opp for the past 54 years, and next weekend is sure to bring the same family-fun it has for more than five decades.

Mr. J.P. Jones was the mastermind behind this small-town, community event. He, along with the Opp Jaycees, first organized this event as a fun-filled, family friendly weekend with snake shows, arts and crafts, and good food.

After several years, the rodeo has grown to include other activities such as beauty pageants, the Rattler car race held at the South Alabama Speedway, snake races, buck-dancing contests, children’s activities, karoke contests, musical entertainment throughout the day and the most popular Rattlin’ Country Concert featuring Nashville country music artists and bands, as well as local groups.

The Rattlin’ Country Concert is held on Saturday evening.

This year, country music’s Easton Corbin will headline the show. Corbin is famous for songs such as “A Little More Country Than That,” “Roll With it,” “I Can’t Love You Back,” and “All Over the Road.”

On Sunday, Christian artists Family Force 5, Hawk Nelson and Building 429 will hit the stage. The acts have teamed up on the “We Won’t Be Shaken” tour.

Family Force 5 hails from Atlanta, while Hawk Nelson is from Ontario.

Building 429 is famous for songs such as “Where I Belong.”

With all the activities scheduled throughout each day, the Rattlesnake Rodeo has something for everyone.

Gates open on Sat., April 12, at 8 a.m. The 5K Run/Walk will begin at 8:30 a.m., with the registration beginning at 7 a.m. at Opp High School.

Snake races will be at 10 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 1:30 p.m. and the championship will be at 2:15 p.m. The greasy pole climb will be at 3:30 p.m., and the buck dancing competition will be at 2:30 p.m.

Tori Reisnour, Taylor Weeks, Lamar Morris and the Dusty Sanderson Band will play beginning at 4:30 p.m., and Easton Corbin will take the stage at 8 p.m.

On Sun., April 13, gates will open at 10 a.m., and a church service will be held at 11 a.m., with Pastor Jonathan Hornsby bringing the message. A snake race and show will be at 12:30 p.m. Hawk Nelson, Family Force 5 and Building 429 will hit the stage at 4 p.m.

Admission is $10 per day and children 6 and under are admitted free.