#HomeGrownStories – Tales from the Troy Strawberry Festival

This past weekend ( June 3-4, 12017) commemorated the 41st Troy Strawberry Festival in Miami County. The festival celebrates strawberries and community and supports local nonprofit organizations. The festival has grown a lot over the past four decades. The festival takes place on the first weekend in June in Historic Downtown Troy and on the Great Miami River Levee. In past years, the attendance has been over 150,000 for the two-day festival. Festival attendees come from all over Miami County, the state of Ohio and beyond! The theme of the fest this year was Silverscreen Berries.

Debbie and Adalyn of Sidney, Ohio
What brought them to the 2017 Troy Strawberry Festival:
Debbie – We came for the arts and crafts and because Adalyn loves strawberries.
How long they have been coming to the festival:
Debbie – This is Adalyn’s first time at the festival. I used to go a lot but haven’t been in several years. I thought it was time to bring Adalyn.
Favorite food or activity at the festival:
Debbie – Right now our favorite activity are the bouncy houses. We love the strawberry donuts and we came early and didn’t have to wait in line for very long.
Adalyn – I made a new best friend!
Debbie – [laughs] She made a friend while we were in line for the donuts. Everyone was really friendly!

The strawberry donuts are a big draw, and the sale of the more than 150,000 donuts benefits Troy City School music students. Donuts are not the only strawberry treat. Over 60 vendors offer strawberry foods, including strawberry shortcake, brats, and strawberry milkshakes. But attendees of the festival come for more. There is music on two stages and over 200 booths of locally made arts and crafts and fun activities.

Bruce of Sterling Heights, Michigan
What brought him to the 2017 Troy Strawberry Festival:
I’m here as a vendor: Doggy Deli makes freshly baked dog treats.
How long he has been coming to the festival:
This is the 8th year that I’ve made the drive to be here.
Favorite food or activity at the festival:
I really enjoy talking to the wide variety of people that come up to my booth.

The festival offers activities for kids and families of all ages. Miami County is a very active community and the festival offers a variety of physical events. The Classic 10K Run, Shortcake Special Run, Softball Tournament, Berry Special Olympics and a Berry Bike Tour are a few. This year the Classic 10K had over 500 participants. Many runners were from Miami County or other areas of Ohio. A few came from Indiana, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Michigan, West Virginia, Tennessee, Colorado, Arizona, and even Alaska!

Dillan of Sidney, Ohio
What brought him to the 2017 Troy Strawberry Festival:
I came for the Classic 10K Run.
How long he has been coming to the festival:
This is my first year coming to the festival.
Favorite food or activity at the festival:
Definitely the strawberry donuts at the end!

This was the second year that our storyteller, Courtney Denning, attended the fest since moving back to Miami County in 2015. She came to cheer her husband on in the Classic 10K and to enjoy downtown Troy on a warm, sunny weekend. She enjoyed the duck confit nachos and jicama slaw from the Friendly Fork food truck. Her favorite strawberry food was the strawberry sundae from Think Sweet Bakery.

You can follow Courtney at ThisOhioLife.com.