The unofficial start to summer begins this holiday weekend and so does the Troika Russian Festival.
The annual festival takes place in Erie for community members to gather together and enjoy the ethnic Russian culture.
Mark Sokoloff, Troika Committee Member tells us, “We’re delighted to have this Troika Festival. It’s the kickoff to the Erie summer season and the ethnic festivals are such a part of the Erie culture and we’re honored and privileged to kick off the season so it kind of signifies the summer.”
There are new improvements to the festival this year including a fish fry night which includes freshly caught perch for Orthodox Christians and a polka band to kick off the fest.
The festival also brings different community members and ethnicities together to share their cultural traditions with one another.
James Bauman, Bob Ulech Polka Band Member says,”Well I think these things are good for the community you know whether it’s Russian, German, Polish, it’s good to have these things. It gets the people socializing and interacting which is good for the community.”
Community members are always excited for the Troika Festival and all the activities it has to offer.
Tom Dill, a visitor says, “The first festival of the season and it starts off well, we’re not wearing parkas sometimes, maybe tomorrow we can wear a parka but, no I just love it the foods great, the audience, the music and everything is fantastic.”
The proceeds from the festival are used to help with social and charitable programs.