Event Schedule

Printable version of the entire 2018 Iris Festival schedule:
[Brochure in PDF format]

Click a date below to navigate the schedule.

Pre-festival Events

Festival Pageants

Click here for information

Saturday, April 28

Citywide Yard Sale

Chairperson: Connie Cheatham, (731) 514-9593
Spend your day exploring hidden treasures and great bargains across the city of Dresden. Bring your friends and enjoy being out and about town when it’s Iris Time in Tennessee! Your $5.00 participation fee may be paid at Dresden City Hall. Checks may be written to Tennessee Iris Festival. The deadline to register to be listed on the map is April 24, 2018. Maps are available at Dresden City Hall on April 25, 2018.

Bicycle Rodeo

Chairperson: Joey Winstead, (731) 431-6396
Bring your bicycle and enjoy riding in a fun-filled obstacle course in the Ned Ray McWherter Civic Center parking lot beginning at 3:00 p.m.

Power Wheels in the Park

Chairperson: First Community Bank, (731) 364-0000
Bring your battery powered toy for a fun drag racing and obstacle course experience. Participants may be ages 7 and under. Event will take place in City of Dresden Park at 5:00 p.m. and one Power Wheel will be given away! For more information contact First Community Bank.


Tennessee Iris Festival Opening Ceremony

Chairpersons: TN Iris Festival Executive Board, (731) 364-2270
Join us at Dresden City Park at 6:00 p.m. as the 39th annual celebration begins! This fun night of entertainment features live music from the local band “Mandy Vixen and the Gas Station Chicken,” free food donated by Volunteer Distributing and Tyson and prepared by MTD, and a fantastic fireworks show sponsored by Savant Learning Systems! This is an event your whole family is sure to enjoy! Bring your lawn chair.

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Sunday, April 29

Cemetery Walk

Chairpersons: Bobby Goode, (731) 364-5391 & Tommy Moore, (731) 364-2915
This event is a favorite of many and sure to be enjoyable to people of all ages. In keeping with the 2018 Iris Festival theme of “Farm, Family, and Tradition,” this year the Cemetery Walk will honor our local “Ancestors of Agriculture.” The actors will introduce the visitors to important farmers and notable farming families from our community who are buried at Sunset. Don’t miss this enjoyable afternoon of oral, interpretive history. Transportation will be available to those in need of assistance in traveling the course of the cemetery. Sponsors and first tour will begin at 4:30 p.m. Last tour begins at 6:30 p.m.


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Monday, April 30

Tennessee Iris Festival Farm, Family, and Tradition Art Show

Chairperson: DeDe McClure, (731) 364-2270, dresdencommunitydevelopment@gmail.com
You will not want to miss the Tennessee Iris Festival Farm, Family, and Tradition Art Show! View tasteful photographs, drawings, and paintings displayed at City Hall in beautiful downtown Dresden. Entries will be accepted at City Hall from March 21st – April 3rd. Entry cost will be $5.00 per entry, paid at City Hall. Bring us your photos, drawings, or paintings of farming landscapes, animals, families, local landmarks, or anything related to the theme of Farm, Family and Tradition. Entries into the art show can come from two age divisions: 17 & under and 18 & older. View the art and cast a vote for your favorite selection from April 9th – May 5th during regular business hours, 8:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. Winners will be announced on April 27th. Get in the spirit and join the fun at the TN Iris Festival Farm, Family and Tradition Art Show!

Prayer Breakfast

Chairperson: First Baptist Church, Dresden – (731) 364-2212
Begin the week at 7:00 a.m. in the fellowship hall at the Dresden First Baptist Family Life Center. A breakfast and program will be provided by Dresden First Baptist Church. Dignitaries, city, county, and state officials will be recognized. Tickets cost $5.00 each and may be purchased at the door immediately before the event.

Tasting Party

Chairperson: Winnie Moore, (731) 364-2077, (731) 234-5641
Come enjoy the fine cooking and popular dishes of the area’s best cooks at The Dresden Elks Lodge from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. This popular event is a unique and deliciously fun affair for the many people who love the Tennessee Iris Festival. Admission is $7.00 at the door.

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Tuesday, May 1

Children’s Fun Bingo

Chairperson: Dresden Elementary Principal Mike Laughrey, (731) 364-3401
Bring your children up to 12 years old to Dresden Elementary School from 6:00 to 7:00 p.m. for a free game of Bingo. Fun prizes will be awarded! Please stay with your children while they play or make plans to pick them up at DES no later than 7:00 p.m.

Iris Festival Fun Bingo

Chairperson: Josh Pirtle, (731) 514-1605
This is one of the most popular events of the week and offers many opportunities to win. The game itself is suspenseful and exciting, and the fun is topped by the great prizes you may win. Bingo is the place to be! Come to the Dresden Middle School Gym from 7:00 – 8:30 p.m. to get in on the action. Admission is free. Must be 18 to enter.

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Wednesday, May 2

Baking Contest

Chairperson: Gail Rogers, (731) 364-5678
Think you’re a good cook? Enter your prize-winning recipe, and let the judges decide! There is no cost to enter. Bring your baked dishes to the McWherter Civic Center between 8:00 and 10:00 a.m. The judging will begin at 10:00 a.m.

Senior Citizen Luncheon

Chairperson: Gail Rogers, (731) 364-5678
Bring a dish, enjoy a free potluck meal, and enjoy the fellowship at 12:00 noon at the McWherter Civic Center. Door prizes will also be given.


Pancake Supper

Chairpersons: Martha Hopper, John Johnson, and Christina Oliver, Kelley and Shelia Swearingen – First Baptist Church – (731) 364-2212
Come eat delicious pancakes at Dresden First Baptist Family Life Center served by the Men’s Ministry and Women on Mission before the community-wide church service from 5:00 p.m. – 6:45 p.m. Tickets will be $6.00 for adults, $4.00 for children 3-6 years old, and free for children 2 years old and younger. Tickets may be purchased at the door or in advance by contacting the church office. All proceeds will be given to Santa’s Helpers of Dresden.

Community Wide Gospel Singing

Chairperson: Tommy Moore, (731) 364-2915
Enjoy community fellowship at Dresden First Baptist Church at 7:00 p.m. The Tennessee Iris Festival is very pleased to announce that famed American composer, arranger, producer, pianist and organist, Mary McDonald, from Knoxville, Tennessee, will be the featured performer on Wednesday, May 2, at Dresden First Baptist Church. Mary McDonald is a 1978 graduate of Carson-Newman College in East Tennessee. Mrs. McDonald is an accomplished choral clinician, arranger, accompanist, and choral editor, as well as an award- winning composer, and a renowned organist. Her lifetime of work as a musician and composer includes 30 years of accompanying and arranging for the Tennessee Baptist Men’s Chorale, as well as serving as the first female President of the Southern Baptist Church Music Conference. A prolific composer, McDonald has published over 800 choral anthems, cantatas, and keyboard collections. The Iris Festival is absolutely honored to welcome Mrs. Mary McDonald for what will undoubtedly be an exceptional evening of beautiful music. Make plans to attend – everyone is sure to enjoy this unforgettable night filled with beautiful melodies and special worship.

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Thursday, May 3

Community Health Fair

Chairpersons: Amie Whittle, (731) 693-0606
Come to the West Side of Court Square in Dresden from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon as local health care providers give free health screenings and resource education. In the case of rain, the Community Health Fair will be moved inside of the courthouse and will be held in the county commission court room located on the main floor adjacent to the Weakley County Mayor’s Office.

Iris Festival Golf Tournament

Chairperson: Dresden Rotary Club, Tournament Director David Campbell at (731) 431-6217 or dcampbel5962@yahoo.com
Sign your team up now for the 26th Annual Dresden Rotary Club Iris Festival Golf Tournament! Our entry fee for a 3 person scramble team is just $150, which includes greens fees, cart,cookout lunch, $10,000 Hole-in-One Prize, Longest Drive & Closest to the Pin Prizes, door prizes, goodie bags, and on course refreshments. Check in and cookout lunch begins at 11:30 a.m., with the Shotgun Start at 12:30 p.m.

The Dresden Rotary Club uses proceeds from this tournament to help feed over 300 children at risk of hunger through our support of the Weakley County Backpack Program. Dresden Rotary also provides scholarships, supports youth sports and leadership programs, and addresses other needs in our community.

Registration forms are available at the Persimmon Hills Golf Course, Dresden City Hall, and Dresden Insurance Agency. Teams must submit entry forms to one of these locations by May 2, 2018. Please make checks payable to the Dresden Rotary Club. Hole sponsorships are available for $50. For more information, or if you are a single in need of a team, please contact Tournament Director David Campbell at (731) 431-6217 or dcampbel5962@yahoo.com.

Fairy Tale Feast

Chairperson: Bancorp South and Brittany Robinson, (731) 514-7037
Bring your children to visit with their favorite fairytale characters at Dresden Elementary School cafeteria from 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Admission to this event is free, and refreshments will be provided.

Fashion Show

Chairperson: ClaireBrooke Consignment – Tiffany Browning, (731) 514-1064
You will not want to miss this super special Fashion Show, this year in a new location: the new Oak Hill Mill event venue in Palmersville. Check out the latest fashions from Northwest Tennessee! This year, we will be featuring stores from Dresden and several surrounding towns. Wear your latest knock-out outfit, join us at 6:30 p.m. to shop with our local vendors who will be featured in the show. Show to start at 7:00 p.m. Tickets can be purchased in advance from ClaireBrooke Consignment on the downtown square in Dresden for $8.00. Tickets will also be sold at the door for $10.00. Free admission for children 5 years or younger.


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Friday, May 4

Tennessee Iris Festival Iris and Horticulture Show

Chairperson: Shirley Chappell, (731) 456-2213 or (731) 514-7306
Bring your favorite plants, flowers, and mixed arrangements to Dresden First United Methodist Church. Entries will be taken from 7:30 – 9:30 a.m., and judging will begin at 9:45 a.m. This event is open to public viewing from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. There will also be a “Best of Show Iris” award given this year. Entries and awards must be picked up by 4:00 p.m.

Corner Café

Chairperson: Jan Everett, (731) 364-5293 (home), (731) 364-2419 (church)
Corner Café is the place to be on Friday for lunch! A festival favorite, everyone enjoys this wonderful luncheon that is prepared by the United Methodist Women at the Dresden First United Methodist Church from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Purchase your lunch ticket at the door for $8.00 per person. *Not a festival sponsored event.


Tennessee Iris Festival BBQ Cook Off

Chairpersons: Willie Parker – (731) 514-1244, and Curtis Doran – (731) 514-6221
Returning to the Iris Festival this year is the BBQ Cook-off! Local cookers will compete on Moore Street (across from the Farmer’s Market). Please contact a chairperson regarding entry fees, food categories, and any other questions!

Tennessee Iris Festival Music Fest

Chairperson: Joey Winstead, (731) 431-6396
Festivities begin at the Dresden Farmers Market at Terry Oliver Plaza and will feature food trucks, hot rods and antique cars, tractors, farm games, and live music from local talent. Balloon Artist Mr. Dennis Clark with Mission Balloon will also be joining us to make your favorite balloon animals! Festivities begin at 6 p.m.

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Saturday, May 5

5K Race, 2 Mile Walk, 1 Mile Kids Fun Run, & .25 Tot Run

Chairpersons: Todd Maxey, (731) 364-6786 or (731) 514-6401 and Dusty Gibson, irun4tn@yahoo.com
The races will be held right off the Dresden Court Square at the corner of Main Street and Poplar Street in Dresden. The first 75 entries, 5K only, will receive a grab bag. 5K Race is $15.00 in advance (deadline April 14th) or $20.00 on the day of the race beginning at 8:00 a.m., 2 mile walk $10.00 beginning at 8:00 a.m., 1 Mile Fun Run, for kids ages 5-12 years will be $10.00 beginning at 7:30 a.m., and 5 and under Tot Run $8.00 immediately following the 5K. For registration form please visit www.tennesseeirisfestival.net.

Tennessee Iris Festival Parade

Chairperson: Penny Gallimore, (731) 364-3131
Find your favorite spot along the parade route to see this year’s entries and our wonderful dignitaries, royalties, and honored guests as they parade through Dresden in celebration of Farm, Family, and Tradition at the 39th Annual Tennessee Iris Festival Parade. The parade begins at 10:00 a.m. Advance registration for entry is required by Friday, May 4, 2018. Entries forms available at Simmons Bank in Dresden and at www.tennesseeirisfestival.net.

Parade Yard Party Competition

Chairperson: Curtis Doran, (731) 514-6221
The Tennessee Iris Festival Executive Board invites the homes and businesses along the Parade route to make the Parade even more festive by hosting a “Yard Party” during the Parade. This event is open to everyone in the city limits. Contact the chairperson with any questions!

McWherter Governor’s Luncheon

Chairpersons: Melinda Goode, Beverly Oliver, and Paula Thomas (731) 225-1008
Gather at the Farmer’s Market Pavilion at the Terry Oliver Plaza to honor the outstanding dignitaries who make a daily impact on Dresden’s legacy of fostering community spirit, and to recognize and thank those who served to make the week a success. The program and meal will begin following the end of the parade. Join us as we welcome the keynote speaker, Mr. Jai Templeton, State of Tennessee Commissioner of Agriculture. The Iris Festival Luncheon is open to the public. Purchase of tickets is required in advance, and the cost is $10.00 each. Tickets are available at Dresden City Hall and Simmons Bank in Dresden.

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Festival Calendar

April 28 - May 5, 2018

(click on a day to see the schedule)

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