Named in honor of Clara Irwin, wife of Robert Irwin, the second owner of the Iles House, the Strawberry Party has been an annual event since 1992. Clara was, among other things, interested in improving agriculture in Illinois and raised prize-winning strawberries on her property south of Cook Street, which in her day was a working farm. She also hosted an annual strawberry party there for many years.
The Elijah Iles House, the oldest residence in Springfield, is located at 628 South Seventh Street, at the northeast corner of Seventh and Cook Streets. Parking is free in the Seventh Street lot just south of the house.