Having grown up in Troy, and raising his own family there, Eric Roetter is the exact type of guy you’d hope to see orchestrating the 42nd annual Strawberry Festival.
His charisma and passion for the small north-of-Dayton community shine through when talking about the upcoming berry-themed event, which he’s been involved in for almost two decades. As the general chairman for this year’s event – a role selected back in 2016 – he’s the berry boss as far as fun, food and festivities go.
During a media tour, we caught up with the self-proclaimed taco connoisseur and craft beer buff to talk about life in the Dayton area, this weekend’s festivities and why there’s no place like home.
Tell us about your role planning, organizing and preparing for the Strawberry Festival.
I am the 2018 general chairman for the 42nd annual Strawberry Festival with a committee of approximately 50 volunteers for various events.
The group’s duties include booking vendors, scheduling competitions and races, marketing the event, and planning food tasting/competitions, pageants and more. Another significant role of the chairman is sourcing sponsorships to fund the festivals’ attractions. Notable changes for this year’s event by the committee include handicap-accessible shuttles, parking and traffic patterns.
How did you become active in the community as chair, etc.?
I was selected as the 2018 chairman two years ago, and have been involved with the festival since 2000.
Outside of the management duties for the Strawberry Festival, what type of work do you do (in the community and professionally)?
I work for the PBI Group/Sas Automation in Xenia as a territory account manager.
What are you most looking forward to at the Strawberry Festival?
Seeing all of the people enjoying the music, arts and crafts – and raising money through food sales for nonprofit programs and organizations in Miami County.
What do you love most about your hometown?
Troy is a beautiful hometown with a great small town feel and big city amenities.
Where’s your favorite place to grab a bite in Dayton?
My favorite place to eat in Dayton is Old Scratch Pizza – I absolutely love that place. Hometown honorable mentions: The Boathouse and The Caroline.
What would you like to say to our readers about the festival?
Come out and enjoy both days – have a stress-free visit by riding our shuttles to and from parking. For additional information on the event, you can visit gostrawberries.com.