USA Insider Exclusive

Create a free profile to get unlimited access to exclusive show news, updates, and more!

Sign Up For Free to View
USA Insider Snake in the Grass

So, What Did The Winners On 'Snake In The Grass' Do With Their Money? Here's Where They Are Now

Playing as the Snake on "Snake In The Grass" meant using plenty of cunning to win. Many of them were able to do it, though — here's what they have to say about their time on the show.

By Becca van Sambeck
The Snake Is Revealed! Can She Outsmart Her Team?

There's an obvious incentive when it comes to competing on "Snake In The Grass": The chance to win $100,000! Of course, for the people who had to play as the Snake, they had to deceive their fellow teammates and attempt to sabotage their challenges in order to win the game and take home the prize money. It made for an eventful season of "Snake In The Grass," with several Snakes able to claim victory.

How to Watch

Stream all eight episodes of "Snake in the Grass" on Peacock.

So, what have the Snakes been up to since the show, and what will those who won do with their money? USA Insider asked the Snakes all that and more. (If you'd like to see what Malcolm Freberg and Stephenie LaGrossa Kendrick, both of "Survivor" fame, had to say about their episodes, check out our exclusive interviews with both Malcolm and Stephenie.)

John Gaber, Episode 1 Winner

Snake In The Grass John


Why did you want to go on "Snake In The Grass"?

I figured being on the show would be a fun mental and physical challenge! There is nothing I love more than traveling and pushing myself in all aspects of life.

What was the best part about being the Snake? The hardest?

The best part about being the Snake was that I LOVE psychology so being able to put all my studying and knowledge to the test in a real application was beyond fulfilling.

The hardest aspect was having to figure out the balance of lying and being honest. If I lied too much then it’s difficult to keep track of everything and easy to slip up. On the other hand, if I told the truth too much then a Snake clue could really pinpoint me. So it was a careful balance of both and a bit of luck.

What have you been doing since your time on the show?

Since the show I’ve been continually growing my brand C9LYFE, making content to inspire and uplift people, building my real estate investor portfolio, improving my calisthenics skills, and embracing life along the way!

What will you do with your prize money?

The money I won from the show is being invested in multiple different avenues to continue to grow my net worth and wealth. I’m not into materialistic items or wasting money on things that depreciate. Freedom is the goal, not impressing people! Always be smart with your money.

Stephanie Ortiz, Episode 2 Snake

Snake In The Grass Stephanie

Why did you want to go on "Snake In The Grass"?

I am a huge fan of survival and strategy-based reality television shows. This opportunity was a dream come true! My dad and I love to nerd out and talk about the latest shows. The best part was knowing I could have this experience and share it with my family. I have an adventurous spirit, I am always willing to try anything at least once, so saying no was never an option! 

 What was the best part of being the Snake? The hardest?

Sabotaging was the best part of being the Snake because I had such an adrenaline rush trying not to get caught. Hiding the plank in the second challenge without being seen was so much harder than it looked! Everyone questioned my fall, but it was completely real. My knee was really bruised for about two weeks and I ended up with quite a scar from it, but it was totally worth it! 

The first seconds after hearing the clues was the hardest part. Internally I was complete wrecked. I had so many thoughts racing through my head while trying to maintain a poker face. I am known for my facial expressions and my eye rolls, so I was trying to keep it together. At the same time, I was questioning what I had talked about, what others have said, what I shouldn’t say, and how I could pin it on someone. Not knowing what the clues would be was terrifying!

Are you still in touch with anyone you played the game with?

I have become friends with Ryan from Episode 8! He is awesome. We made predictions and talked game throughout the season. From my episode, I have been in a group chat with Andrew and Alissa ever since Costa Rica. I enjoy hearing from them. They both are incredible people. 

What have you been doing since the show ended?

Since leaving the show, I have been keeping myself very active. I just returned from an amazing trip visiting friends in the Pacific Northwest. I have been hiking a lot with my dogs. Trying to teach my 85-pound pitbull to stay on a stand-up paddle board with me has been quite the challenge! I am now planning my next adventure to India and Nepal this winter. My greatest passion is to travel and explore different cultures, so if anyone has adventurous trip ideas let me know! 

Elektra Nelson, Episode 4 Winner

Snake In The Grass Elektra

Why did you want to go on "Snake In The Grass"? 

I wanted to go on "Snake In The Grass to challenge myself. As someone who is athletic and competitive, this was a great experience being able to see if I have not only physical, but also mental strength to face challenges that are completely out of my comfort zone. 

What was the best part of being the Snake? The hardest? 

The best part of "Snake In The Grass" was learning I can multitask during the whole experience. The hardest was keeping the lies I was telling my teammates straight. From getting to know my teammates that are so different from me, trying to work together with them deceptively, while also learning their weaknesses AND dealing with the various elements of the jungle, it was A LOT.

Are you still in touch with anyone you played the game with? 

Yes, I keep in touch with all of the people I played the game with! We actually have a group chat and talk regularly. I can honestly call them my friends after such an insane experience and I am so thankful for that

What have you been doing since the show ended? 

Besides working, since the show ended, I have been planning a reunion with my teammates, which is a bit challenging since we live in different states all over the country. 

What do you plan on doing with your winnings?

After winning the show, I plan doing what any true New Yorker dreams of in NYC:  Finding an apartment with in unit washer/dryer, dishwasher, AND outdoor space. 

Michael Steinbech, Episode 6 Winner

Snake In The Grass Michael
Why did you want to go on "Snake In The Grass"?  
I had a couple of reasons for wanting to try and get on "Snake in the Grass." For starters, I thought it would be a fun adventure and I’d get to see a part of the world I’d never been to before! Second, getting on a show like this would be a heck of a story to tell to anyone for the rest of my life. And finally, there was talk of a game or a puzzle to solve. I love games! I always try to find the angle, find the best strategy, or see what’s going on beyond just the pieces we can see. 
What was the best part of being the Snake? The hardest? 
Well, the best part was the money! [Laughs] But the worst part was the lying. There were three other people out here for an adventure that I had to lie to and play against.
Are you still in touch with anyone you played the game with? 
I am still in touch with Brandon and Chelsea from my episode. I just recently found Nai’s social media and sent a note, but she’s not terribly active, so I don’t know if she’s even seen my note to her yet. I’ve also been in contact with some of the other contestants from other episodes. We share a unique event we can bond over. Ryan from the finale episode and I have gotten together twice. Juliet (also from the finale) has messaged me a couple of times, asking about D&D.
What have you been doing since the show ended? 
Since the show, I’ve gotten a new job! I manage the construction of doctors’ offices in a few medical buildings.
The day I flew to Costa Rica for the show was my six-month anniversary with my girlfriend. She and I continue to date. Her son and his friends were super excited to see the show and guessed it was everyone but me as we watched it.
What do you plan on doing with your winnings?
For the winnings, I’ll be donating a portion of it to different charities in each of the players' names. Chelsea wants it given to an animal shelter. There’s a Boys and Girls Club of America that I've supported in the past that I’ll be giving to. My employer is even going to match a portion of my donation.
As for the rest, there are a few practical needs to handle, but a chunk of it is going to be used to get my scuba certification and go on a couple of fun trips with my girlfriend.

Brett Kessinger, Episode 7 Winner

Snake In The Grass' Brett
Why did you want to go on "Snake In The Grass"?
I did not know the full extent of what I was getting into prior to the first day of filming. All that was revealed during the casting process was that the show included adventure and the opportunity to compete in several physical and mental challenges. I am always looking for new ways to push myself, and I never back down from a challenge. I live for moments where I can push past my limits and out of my comfort zone. I couldn't say no to this awesome opportunity.
What was the best part of being the Snake? The hardest? 
The best part of being the Snake was knowing I had the chance to win it all. I was given a challenge, win $100k or leave with nothing, and I wasn't going to go home empty-handed. My main focus was to play smart and not crumble under the pressure (and keep my lies straight).

The hardest part of being the Snake was having to navigate building friendships, while keeping my eye on the prize. I became close with some really great people that I spent a lot of time with, and having to let them down in the end was tough.

Are you still in touch with anyone you played the game with? 
I've stayed in touch with the two lovely ladies from my episode, Lacey and Rogerlyn. Despite betraying them as the snake, I will always have their backs and consider them friends. What we experienced together was insane and it's hard not to feel connected to them for life.
What have you been doing since the show ended? 
Since the show ended, I've been in full-blown adulting mode. My fiancée, Elodie, and I have been planning our wedding for next year, and we also just recently bought our first home. Outside of that, it's been a lot of art, fostering rescue animals, and staying fit with rock climbing and Crossfit.
What do you plan to do with your winnings? 
I'd love to put a chunk towards our wedding and new house, and help out our local animal rescue shelters as best I can. I just want to treat myself a little and help some stray pets find good homes.
Watch more game show content on Peacock right now.
Read more about: