NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WECT) - Tens of thousands of people are expected to visit the region for the 2016 Azalea Festival in just a few weeks.
The New Hanover County Sheriff's Office is putting finishing touches on its security plan for the big event.
New Hanover County Sheriff Ed McMahon wouldn't elaborate on how many deputies will be out and about, but he said they are prepared to work a lot over the course of the festival.
They will be doing everything from providing escorts to assisting during the parade.
McMahon will be moving shifts and schedules around to make sure all events are covered.
He said he wants everyone to have fun, but he also wants everyone to stay safe.
"Have someone that is sober with you that you trust that can keep control of you," he said. "Have a good time, but also pay attention to your surroundings and where you are going and always think about your safety."
The Azalea Festival Parade will begin April 9.