The City of Perry is preparing for the 25th Annual Dogwood Festival.

Patty Johnson, owner of the New Perry Hotel, says her guests will have a front row viewfor a new event.

Chamber of Commerce President, Stacy Campbell, says the national preliminary competition will take place downtown and several of the competitors in the competition of diving dogs are staying with their handlers in the New Perry Hotel.

"We're actually building a pool with a dock in the middle of main street," explains Campbell.

They're also adding a hot air balloon rally at the fairgrounds.

"I would go to the fairgrounds. I would take the trolley downtown, enjoy the festivities during the day. We have the dock dogs going all day, the arts and crafts, live entertainment, fair food. Then once you're done with downtown you can take the trolley back to the fairgrounds enjoy the hot air balloon rally and then your car is right there when you're done for the evening," says Campbell.

Johnson says the festival is a big boost for her business.

"It's going to give us a great shot in the arm, because we'll be completely booked. Our hotel is completely booked on Ffriday night with participants and vendors and with people coming to watch the events," says Johnson.

To get into the spirit, they'll have a kickoff party Friday with a full buffet, and their restaurant will be open all day Saturday and Sunday.

"It's kind of a block party feel. Friday night we'll have a band out here. We'll have a rolling bar outside so people can sit out hereand have mixed drinks, beer or wine," says Johnson.

While organizers are preparing, the dogwood trees are blooming and ready for visitors to enjoy.

The Dogwood Kickoff Party starts at 6 p.m, Friday night.

Dogwood Events:

Kick-Off Party

6PM until midnight

Dogwood Festival 5K

Saturday 8:30 AM

Festival Flapjack Fundraiser

Saturday 7:30 AM until 10:30 AM

Arts and Crafts Show

Saturday from 10AM-6PM and Sunday from noon until 5PM.

DockDog Competition S

Saturday from 10AM-6PM and Sunday from noon until 5PM.

Hot Air Balloon Rally

Saturday from 4PM until 9PM

Doggy Costume Contest

Sunday 1PM

Kids Fishing Derby

Sunday 2PM until 5PM

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