Cold-Blooded Convention

When people think of Florida, the first things that come to mind are sunshine, beaches, and alligators. With their creepy, prehistoric appearance, it’s no wonder those killer reptiles top the list of memorable attributes of the Sunshine State. What some Northerners may be surprised to discover, however, are the myriad other reptilian species in the state. From native turtles and green lizards to invasive iguanas and bufos, it’s hard to walk outside without spotting some sort of reptile running, jumping — or possibly slithering — around. For some, though, daily sightings just aren’t enough — there’s a massive cache of individuals who feel the need to get up-close and personal with cold-blooded critters. If that sentiment resembles your own, you might want to check out this weekend’s Repticon at the Fort Lauderdale War Memorial Auditorium. On Saturday and Sunday, the vintage space will be overrun with Florida’s longest-running reptile and alternative-pet show. The event will be chock-full of shows and activities, including training seminars, presentations on axolotls (Mexican salamanders) and other unusual amphibians, as well as a special appearance and meet and greet with Capt. Chuck Selfert, also known as “Big Country” from Swamp Wars on Animal Planet. A member of the Miami-Dade Fire Department’s Venom Rescue Response, Selfert is one of the leading public figures in the reptilian world. Two-day tickets cost $15 per adult, $5 for kids ages 5 to 12. One-day tickets cost $10 per adult, $5 per child. Both are available for purchase at the door. Online VIP tickets cost $12 per adult, $5 per kid, and include early admission on Saturday and free samples from ZooMed. The event takes place Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (VIP entry at 9 a.m.) and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The War Memorial Auditorium is located at 800 NE Eighth St. in Fort Lauderdale. Visit repticon.com/ftlauderdale.
Sun., Nov. 16, 2014
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Sara Ventiera