Danger Noodle

“I do it because I can, I can because I want to, I want to because you said I couldn’t.” ~Slytherin

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Fair warning…if you aren’t a fan of snakes, this post might not be for you.  I will however encourage giving it a chance though, as there are some really great educational opportunities that I’ll make sure and mention.

With that said, Reptile World Serpentarium in St. Cloud, FL, was an amazing place to find and visit.  Opened in 1972, this facility houses a variety of snakes from all over the world.  In addition to displaying snakes, both venomous and nonvenomous, this Serpentarium is a “venom factory” which regularly collects venom from resident snakes for the purposes of developing antivenin for medicinal and herpetological research.  The awesome thing about this particular Serpentarium is that visitors have a chance to view 2 venom “milkings” a day.

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DSC05437When you enter the unassuming building, you’ll enter through the gift shop.  To the right is the housing facility for the snakes on display, like the above Green Tree Python and Black Mamba.

The following slideshow shows some more snakes that are housed in the exhibit hall.  Please check the website for snake names and updates to the animals on display.

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In addition to snakes housed in the main building, there are other reptiles and birds housed in various enclosures throughout the facility.

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At 12pm and 2pm the “milking” demonstrations started.  Several local snakes had their venom extracted for an audience.  Preceding this was a thorough discussion about local snake species, antivenin, and general snake husbandry.  The following pictures shows the “milking” process.  For more detailed information about this, please visit the linked website below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

While not afraid of snakes, I’ve always had a healthy respect for them.  And if you’re wanting to visit someplace other than a theme park, I’d definitely recommend Reptile World Serpentarium.  Fair warning, it gets humid and hot in summer with a healthy selection of biting insects.  But that’s Florida, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise.  

 


Address: 5705 E Irlo Bronson Memorial Hwy, Saint Cloud, FL 34771

Hours: Tuesday-Sunday 10am-5pm

Website (Check website for admission fees)

Freedom Booms

“Man is the only animal whose existence is a problem that he has to solve.”~Erich Fromm

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For anyone that might’ve missed it, yesterday was the 4th of July.  Independence Day for the United States of America.  The 241st birthday.  Happy Birthday USA.  Happy Birthday.  Needless to say, fireworks weren’t hard to see or hear as evidenced by the bellowing booms and flashes for a few days prior.

Last night the City of Winter Springs, FL put on their annual show of fireworks for the city and whoever else in the Central Florida area wanted to join in the festivities. It took place at Central Winds Park and there were local vendors, live music, a brief presentation by the mayor, all ending in a fireworks display.  Seized the opportunity to practice some night photography and get in some excellent people watching.  Nothing say’s patriotism like a crowd fully clothed in versions of the American flag and bought at Old Navy, Kohls, or Walmart.  Not that I was exempt as I wore a Fife and Drum printed t-shirt, purchased in Colonial Williamsburg.  The point however is not that.  It’s something along the line’s of the photographs of fireworks that were captured.

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I’m pretty sure most people don’t flock to fireworks shows with their families in tow, hoping to find some undiscovered part of themselves that’s been laying dormant for their whole lives.  But come on….some of these fireworks are pretty cool looking and can give folks the feels.  Like the one just above…a giant group of jellyfish?! Illuminated dementors?! Whatever it is, sending low explosive pyrotechnics shooting off into the sky for entertainment can make one ponder some things in life.  Especially when paired with appropriately timed music that makes the whole event that much more immersive.

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Take these stars for example.  Wait, those are fireworks again.  Right.  Imagination getting the better of me again.  How fun is it though to look up and imagine you’re somewhere else, while your feet are still on the ground?! Kinda like being a kid again.  Remember that part of your brain that was full of creativity, imagination, and wonder as a kid?! Fireworks might tend to tap into that.

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Sea anemone maybe?!

 

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Holographic giant Dahlia flower?!

 

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A group of little spaceships having it out at the edge of the event horizon of a black hole?! “pew pew”

Not quite sure what the purpose of entertainment fireworks are when broken down the nitty gritty.  But who cares?! If just for a brief moment, that sense of reality is paused and the enjoyment of wonder is embraced again, isn’t that one purpose?! Enjoying the fun of freedom booms, whatever that even means to you.  The city of Winter Springs does a fantastic job creating community in these events.  It’s eerily organized in everything from the parking in’s and out’s to the program they have set up.

So why post the initial quote about existence?  That’s up to you to figure out, but for me it’s readily found in small moments that I do my best to enjoy fully.  Letting my imagination have a little fun and being okay with it.  That’s gotta count for something.

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To search for other events, click….City of Winter Springs Special Events

To see what other offerings the park has, click…Central Winds Park Website

Entrance and parking were free

Security check at entrance, small coolers, chairs, mats, etc. permitted