Perry, FL

Perry, one of several Natural North Florida towns located on U.S. Highway 19/98, is the county seat of Taylor County, Florida.  Perry, population 7,000, is one of two Natural North Florida towns named after Madison Starke Perry, Governor of Florida from 1875 to 1861.  Perry is undergoing a rejuvenation of its downtown which makes it worth a stop if, for no other reason, than to visit the downtown and its eateries.  Downtown is located just a few blocks off U.S. Highway 19 and U.S. Highway 98.

However, downtown Perry has more going for it than just food.  The downtown is lined with interesting shops and features, including Rosehead Park.  Perry is home to a number of festivals and events which draw crowds from the entire southeastern United States, including the Big Bend Brewfest in early March, the Florida State Bluegrass Festival in early April, the Smokin’ in the Pines Barbecue Festival in late September and the Florida Forest Festival held in late October.

Timber, as with other Natural North Florida towns, was and still is a primary industry.  Consequently Perry is home to the Florida State Forestry Museum, which depicts the history of the forestry industry in the state.

Bicyclists may enjoy riding at least a portion of the 54-mile Perry to Econfina State Park bicycle route or the shorter 43-mile Steinhatchee to Perry bicycle route.  Econfina River State Park offers many scenic viewpoints and opportunities to view wildlife.  The Steinhatchee to Perry route follows the closest paved road parallel to the nearby Big Bend coastline.

The town has serveral new hotels which make Perry a good place to spend a night or a few days while fishing or paddling the nearby Gulf coast, fishing or paddling the Steinhatchee, Econfina and Aculla Rivers or while enjoying the sunset over the Gulf from the nearby coastal communities of Steinhatchee or Keaton Beach.