Rothschild Northern Wisconsin Reptile Expo fights reptile stigma

ROTHSCHILD, Wisconsin (WSAW) – Over a thousand people attended the Rothschild Northern Wisconsin Reptile Expo on Sunday. There were dozens of tables with vendors selling animals and supplies. The event coordinator said the main goal of the family event is to educate the general public.

“We certainly see a lot of people who would never have even considered having a reptile as a pet and they just succeed and learn. This is probably the most important part about it. Make the general public understand that these animals are not here to have you. said Dylan Konitzer, event coordinator.

People came from as far away as Minnesota, Illinois and the UP to attend the event. Besides bringing together people with similar hobbies, Konitzer likes to provide a good experience for children.

“See all the little kids go by and their eyes light up,” Konitzer said.

Many held snakes and other reptiles without fear. Konitzer hopes that if children are exposed and educated to them at a young age, negative social stigmas towards reptiles will decrease.

“People think they’re filthy, they’re slimy, they bite and we prove that’s not true,” said Gary Orner, a salesperson.

Ornate breeds and sells leopard geckos. He attended around 80 salons a year to share his passion with others. Orner said they are low maintenance, but can live for around 20 years. Ornate recommends them as pets for allergy sufferers.

The next exhibition at Rothschild will take place on February 6. For the Facebook page with information about the expo Click here.

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