Dayton Festivals: A Berry Good Time

 Dayton Festivals: A Berry Good Time

The Troy Strawberry Festival returns for another year of fun and food.

Corinne Minard

When you’ve held a festival every year for 38 years, it can be difficult to keep it fresh. But that’s never been a problem for the Troy Strawberry Festival. 

“It’s a family-friendly festival that provides incredible food, over probably 100 different strawberry delights,” says Corie Schweser, business manager for the Troy Strawberry Festival. Along with typical festival activities, Schweser says the festival offers ongoing entertainment Saturday through Sunday, a cruise-in, pie-eating contests, a diaper derby, bed races, a kid’s zone, a 10k run, a bike tour and more.

“There’s all kinds of activities and you can just really spend the whole day at the festival,” she says.

The festival, which is held June 6-7 this year, is a massive affair that also has an extra day to celebrate beforehand: Friday features community activities like the children’s parade and bed race, as well as the Troy Alumni Football Game; on Saturday, the food and craft booths open up while the pie-eating contest takes place; and attendees can take part in the bike tour or view the cruise-in on Sunday. However, these are just some of the many events offered during the festival; Schweser advises festivalgoers to check the schedule online to fully plan out their weekend.

The festival is also spread out over two locations. The levee side is perfect for families—it is home to the children’s area and the pie-eating contests. Downtown Troy, on the other hand, hosts the many food and arts-and-crafts booths, along with live entertainment.

“Every year, we have new arts-and-crafts vendors,” says Schweser. “They used to [be only locals] when the festival first started; now they come from all over the country. There’s a lot of diversity between pottery, jewelry and homemade fashions, designs, photography, painting, sculptures and anything imaginable.”

The food items available are even more diverse. “From non-strawberry food products that are amazing to any kind of strawberry thing you could imagine—burritos to cannolis to cupcakes to shortcakes to cheesecakes to deep-fried strawberries to chocolate-covered strawberries, it is unlimited,” adds Schweser. “If you can think of it, it is probably here and they can make it from a strawberry.” 

The most sought-after items are the strawberry donuts (which are available for pre-order), but Schweser recommends trying two other strawberry items, too: the rhubarb and strawberry crisp, and the strawberry shortcake.

“The tart rhubarb and the sweetest strawberries, and then they put ice cream on it while it’s nice and warm. Oh my god,” she says. “And then the senior center, every year they have done the strawberry shortcake. They get together in the senior center and they make their own shortcake by hand. … When you come in you can have your choice of angel food, biscuit or shortcake and it just melts in your mouth. It’s just amazing. It’s like going to your grandma’s house and having shortcake.”

The festival organizers expect between 150,000 to 200,000 people to attend this year’s festival, so they have set up a shuttle to make getting around easier. Festival-goers will be able to park at the WACO Air Museum and the Miami Jacobs Career College, and board a shuttle that will drop them off in the heart of the festival in Downtown Troy.

For more information, visit the Troy Strawberry Festival’s website at It has information on all the events and entertainment, including the car show and this year’s headlining musical act, The Gas Pump Jockeys.