Giant snapping turtle among bonfires to be lit Christmas Eve
GARYVILLE - A snapping turtle that can stick out its neck and snap its jaws was built to burn along with scores of teepee-shaped bonfires on Christmas Eve in Louisiana.
Every year, miles of levees between New Orleans and Baton Rouge are lit up in a tradition said to help Pere Noel find his way to homes in Louisiana's River Parishes. Tens of thousands of tourists come to watch.
Joshua Weidert tells news outlets the 24-foot-long snapping turtle was built of plywood and crab traps.
Last year, he and a group of friends who call themselves "Blood, Sweat and Bonfires" made a crawfish that opened and closed its claws.
He tells WWL-TV that many people tell him it's a shame to burn the turtle. But, says Weidert, people make beautiful wedding cakes to be eaten.