Keeping the fair tradition alive

SILVANA — Roy Strotz, 69, is right at home as president of the Silvana Community Fair.

As is true for the animals, crafts and foods featured at the annual event, Strotz also is a local product.

He was born and raised in the Island Crossing community, in a home where he still lives. He met his longtime wife, Darlene, during their time at Arlington High School. They raised a crop of four children and laid down roots in the rural countryside they love.

The Silvana event kicks off fair season in Snohomish County. Strotz is so used to managing the fair, he doesn’t even remember that he’s been at it for more than 20 years until Darlene Strotz reminds him.

“I always say, ‘Let somebody else do it,’ but nobody else wants to jump up to the plate,” said Strotz, a former dairy farmer who now runs Strotz Country Feed in Arlington. “So I say I’ll do it another year.”

Recently, Strotz was front-and-center at the annual Silvana Community Auction, the lone fundraiser to support the fair. As usual, and despite the lagging economy, the auction pulled in enough money to support the beloved community event.

Strotz expects a great turnout for this year’s fair, too.

Even though it’s hard work, he looks forward to the fair because he gets to see everyone from his community. He also looks forward to the weather. In all his years as fair president, he can’t remember a single time when it rained the day of the fair.

“Everybody is getting to the point now that when they want to do something, they plan it on the day of the Silvana fair,” Strotz said. “They know it’s going to be good weather.”

Reporter Scott Pesznecker: 425-339-3436 or

View a slide show of the auction

The Silvana Community Fair is 9 to 5 p.m. July 26. The fair is held inside and behind Viking Hall at 1331 Pioneer Highway.

An auction was held earlier this month to raise money for the fair. To view a slide show with sounds and photos from the auction, go to

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