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Dayton, Ohio

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Dayton in Ohio.


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Dayton is the 6th largest city in the U.S. state of Ohio and the county seat of Montgomery County, the fifth most populous county in the state.


Unlike many midwestern cities of its age, Dayton has very broad and straight downtown streets (generally two or three full lanes in each direction), facilitating access to the downtown even after the automobile became popular. The main reason for the broad streets was that Dayton was a marketing and shipping center from its beginning: streets were broad to enable wagons drawn by teams of three to four pairs of oxen to turn around. In addition, some of today's streets were once barge canals flanked by draw-paths.

A courthouse building was constructed in downtown Dayton in 1888 to supplement Dayton's original Neoclassical courthouse, which still stands. This second, "new" courthouse has since been replaced with new facilities as well as a park. The Old Court House has also been a favorite campaign stop. On September 17, 1859, future President Abraham Lincoln delivered an address on the steps of the building. Eight other presidents have visited the courthouse, either as presidents or during presidential campaigns. They include Andrew Johnson, James Garfield, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, and Bill Clinton.

In 2009, The CareSource Management Group completed construction of a $55 million corporate headquarters at the corner of Main Street and Monument Avenue in downtown Dayton. The 300,000-square-foot (28,000 m2), 10-story building marks downtown's first new office tower in more than a decade.

The two tallest buildings of the Dayton skyline are the Kettering Tower at 408 ft (124 m) and the KeyBank Tower at 385 ft (117 m). Kettering Tower was originally Winters Tower, the headquarters of Winters Bank. The building was renamed after Virginia Kettering when Winters was merged into BankOne. KeyBank Tower was formerly known as the MeadWestvaco Tower before KeyBank gained naming rights to the building in 2008.


Fine arts

The Benjamin and Marian Schuster Performing Arts Center in downtown Dayton, is a world-class performing arts center and the home venue of the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra, Dayton Opera, and the Dayton Ballet. In addition to Philharmonic and Opera performances, the Schuster Center hosts concerts, lectures, traveling Broadway shows, and is a popular spot for weddings, and other events. The historic Victoria Theatre, located in downtown Dayton, hosts concerts, traveling Broadway shows, ballet, a summertime classic film series, and more. The Loft Theatre, also located downtown, is the home of the Human Race Theatre Company. The Dayton Playhouse, in West Dayton, is the site of numerous plays and theatrical productions.

Dayton is the home of the Dayton Ballet, one of the oldest professional dance companies in the United States. The Company runs the Dayton Ballet School, the oldest dance school in Dayton and one of the oldest in the country. It is the only ballet school in the Miami Valley associated with a professional dance company. Additionally, Dayton is home to the Gem City Ballet and Progressive Dance Theater, companies in residence at the Pontecorvo Ballet Studio. Dayton is also home to "World Class" Dayton Contemporary Dance Company (DCDC), one of the most popular African American dance companies in the world.


Dayton is home to a variety of popular pizza chains that have become woven into local culture, the most notable of which are Cassano's and Marion's Piazza.

Also based in Dayton is the Mexican Restaurant chain Hot Head Burritos, which was ranked by in 2009 as one of America's next big chains.

Other Dayton-based food chains are Super Subby's which specializes in submarine sandwiches and chili, The Flying Pizza which is a New York–style pizza chain, Fricker's which specializes in chicken wings, and The Submarine House which specializes in submarine sandwiches.[79] Along with these food chains, Esther Price Candies (a candy and chocolate company), and Mike-sells, the oldest potato chip company in the United States, are also based in Dayton.

Two other restaurants that have become part of Dayton's culture are The Pine Club and Milano's. The Pine Club, noted for being one of the best steakhouses in the area, gained notoriety by making then Vice-President George H.W. Bush wait for a table because they do not take reservations. Milano's specializes in pizzas and sub sandwiches and recently was remodeled and has become a hotspot for UD students.


Christianity is represented in Dayton by dozens of denominations and their respective churches. Notable Dayton churches include the First Lutheran Church and the Sacred Heart Church both located downtown. Dayton is also home to the United Theological Seminary of the United Methodist Church. Christmas on Campus invites children each year to celebrate Christmas on the campus of the University of Dayton. The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Cincinnati list 21 parishes in City of Dayton and 32 total in Montgomery County.

Judaism is represented by Temple Israel synagogue, Beth Jacob Synagogue, Temple Beth Or, and the Jewish Federation of Greater Dayton. Islam is represented by the Dayton Islamic Center, Masjid of Islam, and the Islamic Community Center. Non-Abrahamic places of worship in the city include the Dayton Hindu Temple and the Baha'i Center Of Dayton.

Notable people

The Dayton area has been home to many famous persons ranging from actors to athletes. Some of the most notable are:

Wright brothers, inventors of the airplane
Martin Sheen, actor
Rob Lowe, actor
Allison Janney, actress
Mike Nawrocki, founder of the Christian series Veggie Tales
Roger Clemens, baseball pitcher
Sidney Souers, first Director of the CIA
Paul Iams, founder the Iams pet food company
Paul Laurence Dunbar, poet
Ming Tsai, chef and Emmy-winning TV host
Edwin Moses, Olympic track and field
Robert Pollard, musician


Tourism visiting Montgomery County accounted for $1.7 billion in business activity in 2007. Tourism also accounts for 1 out of every 14 private sector jobs in the county. Tourism in the Dayton region is led by The National Museum of the United States Air Force at nearby Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. It is the largest and oldest military aviation museum in the world. The museum draws over 1.3 million visitors per year and is one of the single most visited tourist attractions in Ohio. The museum houses the National Aviation Hall of Fame.

Other museums also play significant roles in the tourism and economy of the Dayton area. The Dayton Art Institute, a museum of fine arts, owns collections containing more than 20,000 objects spanning 5,000 years of art and archaeological history.[86] The Dayton Art Institute was rated one of the top 10 best art museums in the United States for children. Dayton is also home to a children's museum. The Boonshoft Museum of Discovery is a local children's museum of science with numerous exhibits, one of which includes an indoor zoo with nearly 100 different animals.

Some historical museums also have notability in the region. The Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park, operated by the National Park Service, commemorates the lives and achievements of Dayton natives Orville and Wilbur Wright and Paul Laurence Dunbar. The Wright brothers' famous Wright Flyer III aircraft is housed in a museum at Carillon Historical Park. America's Packard Museum is the world's only restored Packard Dealership operating as a museum. The museum contains over 50 restored Packard vehicles, and in addition, significant artifacts from the Packard Motor Car Company are on display. Another notable park, SunWatch Indian Village/Archaeological Park is located on the south end of Dayton. SunWatch is the location of a 12th century American Indian village that has been partially reconstructed and includes a museum where visitors can learn about the Indian history of the Miami Valley.


The Vectren Dayton Air Show is an annual air show that takes places at the Dayton International Airport. The Vectren Dayton Airshow is one of the largest air shows in the United States and is known as one of North America's premier events.

The Dayton area is served by Five Rivers MetroParks, encompassing 14,161 acres (5,731 ha) over 23 facilities for year-round recreation, education, and conservation. In cooperation with the Miami Conservancy District, the MetroParks maintains over 70 mi (113 km) miles of paved, multi-use scenic trails that connect Montgomery County with Greene, Miami, Warren and Butler Counties. Five Rivers Metroparks, from 1996 to 1998, Dayton hosted the National Folk Festival. Since then, the annual Cityfolk Festival has continued to bring the best in folk, ethnic and world music and arts to Dayton. The Five Rivers MetroParks also owns and operates the PNC Second Street Market located near downtown Dayton. The Market has more than 50 vendors selling items such as produce, cooked foods, baked goods, crafts, and flowers.

The Dayton area hosts several arenas and venues. South of Dayton in Kettering is the Fraze Pavilion, which hosts many nationally and internationally known musicians for concerts. Several notable performances have included the Backstreet Boys, Boston, and Steve Miller Band. South of downtown, on the banks of the Great Miami River, is the University of Dayton Arena, home venue for the University of Dayton Flyers basketball teams and the location of various other events and concerts. UD Arena also hosts the Winter Guard International championships, at which hundreds of percussion and color guard ensembles compete from around the world.[98] North of Dayton is the Hara Arena that frequently hosts expo events and concerts. In addition, the Dayton Amateur Radio Association annually hosts the Dayton Hamvention, North America's largest hamfest at Hara Arena. Amateur radio operators are commonly referred to as "hams" with as many as 25,000 traveling from around the world to attend this convention. The Nutter Center, which is just east of Dayton in the suburb of Fairborn is the home arena for athletics of Wright State University and the former Dayton Bombers hockey team. This venue is used for many concerts, community events, and various national traveling shows and performances.

Located in the nearby suburb of Moraine is an outdoor waterpark known as Splash Moraine. The park is best known for its large wave pool.

The Oregon District is a historic residential and commercial district in southeast downtown Dayton. The district is populated with art galleries, specialty shops, pubs, nightclubs, and coffee houses.

The City of Dayton is also host to yearly festivals. Most notably the Dayton Celtic Festival and the City Folk Festival. The Dayton Celtic Festival attracts more than 30,000 people yearly and has Irish dancing, food, crafts, and performers such at Gaelic Storm. Other festivals held in the city of Dayton include, the Dayton Blues Festival, Urban Nights, the African American and Cultural Festival, and the Dayton Reggae Fest.

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