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End-of-summer bucket list: How to make the most of your Dayton summer before it’s over

Dayton.com logo Dayton.com 9/1/2020 Ashley Moor
a group of people standing next to a body of water: Dayton © Brent Anslinger Dayton

In the blink of an eye, it seems, summer 2020 has nearly come to a close. This seasonal shift might be especially felt this year, since many have not been able to check off all of the items on their summertime bucket lists due to the coronavirus pandemic shutting down spaces, limiting travel and canceling major events and festivals.

However, despite the ongoing health crisis, there are still a few precious weeks left to fully take advantage of the summertime offerings in the Miami Valley, from carryout versions of beloved cultural festivals to the opening of new, intriguing restaurants. To be sure that you don’t miss out on a chance to experience all that the Dayton summer has to offer, we have come up with a Dayton-centric end-of-summer bucket list chock full of ways to enjoy the season before it officially ends with the fall equinox.

LABOR DAY WEEKEND: The events taking place (and the ones that are not) over the holiday weekend

The 60th annual Greek Festival took place over the weekend from Friday, Sept 7 to Sunday, Sept 9 at The Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church, 500 Belmonte Park North in Dayton. This year's event had amazing food, devoted volunteers and the support and attendance of the community, despite it raining throughout the weekend. TOM GILLIAM / CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHER © Tom Gilliam The 60th annual Greek Festival took place over the weekend from Friday, Sept 7 to Sunday, Sept 9 at The Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church, 500 Belmonte Park North in Dayton. This year's event had amazing food, devoted volunteers and the support and attendance of the community, despite it raining throughout the weekend. TOM GILLIAM / CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHER

🌞Enjoy Greek Festival to go

Where: Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church, 500 Belmonte Park N., Dayton

When: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 11, noon to 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12 and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 13

More info: Website | Facebook

This year, due to restrictions created by the coronavirus pandemic, the Dayton Greek Festival will be hosting a carryout version of its popular event, set to take place on Friday, Sept. 11 from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 11, noon to 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12 and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 13 at Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in Dayton.

Beginning on Friday, Aug. 28, customers will be able to order online through the Dayton Greek Festival’s website. There will be no additional ordering permitted on site, as all orders must be pre-paid and placed on the festival’s website.

Many festival food favorites will be offered at this carryout event, including Gyros, Baklava and Greek salads.

Going Greek: How to order your favorite food from the Dayton Greek Festival’s drive-thru event

a group of people that are eating some food: Italian Fall Festa includes a spaghetti eating contest. © Italian Fall Festa Italian Fall Festa includes a spaghetti eating contest.

🌞Celebrate Italian cuisine at the Italian Fall Festa

Where: The John Pirelli Lodge, 2625 County Line Road, Kettering

When: Friday, Sept. 11, and Saturday, Sept. 12, from noon to 9 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m.

More info: Website | Facebook

The Italian Fall Festa, an annual celebration of all things Italian, will now be moving forward with a drive-thru operation taking place on Friday, Sept. 11 and Saturday, Sept. 12 from noon to 9 p.m. and Sunday, Sept. 13 from noon to 6 p.m. in Kettering.

According to festival organizers, guests can expect spaghetti and meatball dinners, homemade calzones, sausage, meatball, Italian beef and Muffaletta sandwiches, pizza, pastries, cakes and deli items to choose from over the course of the drive-thru festival. Soft drinks will also be available for purchase.

Guests will order their carryout meals on site and are required to wait in their cars while the orders are filled. The event is cash only. As they wait for their orders to be filled, guests will be able to enjoy live Italian music from the comfort and safety of their cars. Additionally, organizers ask that patrons do not leave their cars while they wait in order to meet social distancing guidelines.

Mangia! How to get fall festival’s famoso Italian food to go

🌞Take a tour of the many covered bridges in Preble County

Christman Bridge, on Eaton-New Hope Road, is one of eight covered bridges in Preble County. LISA POWELL / STAFF © LISA POWELL / STAFF Christman Bridge, on Eaton-New Hope Road, is one of eight covered bridges in Preble County. LISA POWELL / STAFF

Before the summer ends, be sure to take a drive to see the oldest covered bridge in the state of Ohio. To see this historical site, you’ll need to travel to Preble County, where seven other covered bridges exist in quaint communities and rural roads.

The oldest covered bridge in Ohio is the Roberts Bridge, built in 1829 and located on Beech Street in Eaton.

The seven other bridges gracing the most rural parts of Preble County were built in the 19th, 20th and early part of the 21st centuries.

Here is the full list of covered bridges to explore in Preble County:

Northern tour:

  • Warnke Bridge, Swamp Creek Road
  • Dixon’s Branch Bridge, Lewisburg Community Park
  • Geeting Bridge, Price Road
  • Christman Bridge, Eaton-New Hope Road

Southern tour:

  • Roberts Bridge, Beech Street
  • Harshman C Bridge, Concord-Fairhaven Road
  • Hueston Woods Bridge, Camden College Corner Road
  • Brubaker Bridge, Brubaker Road

WORTH THE DRIVE: Charming covered bridges offer a trip back in time

a little girl holding a dog: This year's Furry Skurry will be a month-long, fun-filled virtual event that will run the entire month of September. CONTRIBUTED © Provided by Dayton.com This year's Furry Skurry will be a month-long, fun-filled virtual event that will run the entire month of September. CONTRIBUTED

🌞Humane Society of Greater Dayton virtual 5k

Where: Taking place virtually

When: Beginning Sept. 1 and extending throughout the entire month

More info: Website | Facebook

Furry Skurry, a 5K hosted by the Humane Society of Greater Dayton, the area’s largest no-kill animal welfare agency, is now a virtual fundraising event, due to the coronavirus pandemic.

This year, instead of completing a 5K, participants are encouraged to run or walk as many miles as they can throughout the entire month of September. The Humane Society of Greater Dayton hopes that all participants will work together to reach their goal of 25,000 miles to help 25,000 animals. This goal is a nod to the fact that in just five years, the Humane Society of Greater Dayton has impacted the lives of 25,000 animals in the Miami Valley, whether that help came in the form of rehabilitation or adoption.

Those who wish to participate can do so individually or as a group. Participants can register for the virtual race by visiting the Humane Society’s website. General registration is $35 per person and each runner or walker will receive a 2020 Virtual Furry Skurry T-shirt, drawstring bag and participation medal. For $75, participants can become a VIPP (Very Important People and Pets) to help the shelter provide aid to homeless animals in the area. For this additional aid, VIPP participants also will receive a 2020 Virtual Furry Skurry T-shirt, drawstring bag, dog bandanna, tumbler, participation medal and a voucher for a 6-pack of the Four Legged Lager from the Dayton Beer Company. All of these goodie bags will be shipped directly to the homes of the participants. It is also possible to create a team or join a pre-existing team when registering on the Humane Society of Greater Dayton’s website.

Grab your favorite pup and enjoy the virtual Furry Skurry all month

🌞Check out the new brewhouse in Tipp City

Chaffee’s Brewhouse is set to open in downtown Tipp City in mid-to-late September. The brand new brewhouse, located at 15 S. 2nd St., will feature local craft beer and wine, along with a selection of charcuterie boards and cocktails.

Stay tuned for opening announcements by heading to the brewhouse’s Facebook page and website.

🌞Indulge in craft beer at the brand new Warped Wing Barrel Room & Smokery

a group of people standing in front of a building: Here's a look at the soft opening of the Warped Wing Barrel Room & Smokery in Springboro on Friday, August 28, 2020. Located on the corner 73 and 741 in the new mixed-use Wright Station development by Synergy & Mills Development, this is Warped Wing Brewing Company's second location. TOM GILLIAM/CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHER © Tom Gilliam Here's a look at the soft opening of the Warped Wing Barrel Room & Smokery in Springboro on Friday, August 28, 2020. Located on the corner 73 and 741 in the new mixed-use Wright Station development by Synergy & Mills Development, this is Warped Wing Brewing Company's second location. TOM GILLIAM/CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHER

Dayton’s popular Warped Wing Brewing Brewing Company have opened a second location in Springboro, called The Warped Wing Barrel Room & Smokery. The new location will be housing a taproom, a restaurant, a biergarten-style outdoor patio with a fire pit, a large space for barrel-aging beers, a test-pilot brewery, a distribution hub and event space.

PHOTOS: Warped Wing Barrel Room & Smokery now open

Guests can look forward to enjoying craft beer and a plethora of smoked meats.

The Warped Wing Barrel Room & Smokery’s hours will be 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to midnight on Friday and Saturday (alcohol sales will cease at 10 p.m. as per statewide COVID-19 health order), and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday. Wines and cocktails are not available on Sundays.

A sneak peek at Warped Wing Springboro’s food menu, beers and taproom

a tray of food on a table: Ghostlight Coffee has launched ‘Fantasma Taco’ at its South Patterson Boulevard shop, serving up tacos Thursday through Saturday evenings. Photo by Abby Hofrichter/Hofrichter Creative © Abby Hofrichter/Hofrichter Creative Ghostlight Coffee has launched ‘Fantasma Taco’ at its South Patterson Boulevard shop, serving up tacos Thursday through Saturday evenings. Photo by Abby Hofrichter/Hofrichter Creative

🌞Try Ghostlight Coffee’s new ‘Fantasma Taco’

Ghostlight Coffee has launched a sister shop, “Fantasma Taco,” at its Ghostlight Midtown shop at 800 S. Patterson Blvd.

Fantasma Tacos are available Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights, from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., for carryout and delivery.

The taco options are billed as street-inspired, and they include:

-- Pollo: Beer-braised chicken, pico de gallo, cilantro, herbed crema, $6.50 for two tacos

-- Carne: Beer-braised beef brisket, pico de gallo, cilantro, herbed crema, $7.25 for two tacos

-- Carnitas: Beer-braised pork, pico de gallo, cilantro, herbed crema, $6.50 for two tacos

-- Veganos: Choice of vegan protein, pico de gallo, cilantro, herbed crema, $6.50 to $7.25 for two tacos

There are three “mod tacos” available: Nashville Hot with the choice of chicken or vegan soy-based “chicken” with Nashville hot sauce, agave lime slaw, pickled red onions, herbed crema, and seasoned crumbs ($8 for two tacos); Ocho Rios made with shredded pork or vegan mushroom “pork” with Rum Jerk Sauce, pickled pineapple, jalapenos, herbed crema and tortilla crumbles, $8 for two tacos; and Beef Brisket or vegan brisket with Memphis BBQ Sauce, agave lime slaw, pickled red onions, herbed crema and crunched-up sea-salt potato chips, $8.75 for two tacos.

For more information, visit www.fantasmataco.com or call 937-701-0068.

Ghostlight Coffee launches ‘Fantasma Taco’ at its South Patterson Boulevard shop

🌞Try Dayton’s newest vegan restaurant

Cafe 1610 is Dayton’s newest vegan restaurant, already drawing national and local attention. The restaurant, located at 521 Wayne Ave. in Dayton, is set to open on Sept. 5.

Cafe 1610 will specialize primarily in breakfast, brunch and lunch, and will offer a “guest-chef” dinner service every Sunday.

Cafe 1610′s hours will be 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday, closed Monday and Tuesday.

For more information, check out the restaurant’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/Cafe1610.Dayton, call 937-815-1610 or email cafe1610.dayton@gmail.com.

a herd of sheep grazing on a rocky hill: The Lookout Columbarium and Plaza at Woodland Cemetery, which overlooks the city of Dayton and the Miami Valley, was dedicated in July, 2010. The nearly 200 acre cemetery was founded in 1841 and is the final resting place for more than 108,000 people. TY GREENLEES / STAFF © Provided by Dayton.com The Lookout Columbarium and Plaza at Woodland Cemetery, which overlooks the city of Dayton and the Miami Valley, was dedicated in July, 2010. The nearly 200 acre cemetery was founded in 1841 and is the final resting place for more than 108,000 people. TY GREENLEES / STAFF

🌞View Dayton from Woodland Cemetery

Aside from visiting the famous Daytonians who are buried here, Woodland offers a view like no other. Take a stroll there, then head to Lookout Columbarium stands at the highest point in the city and is the ultimate spot for sightseers.

a tree in a forest: A view of Clifton Gorge State Nature Preserve from a 360-degree camera. FILE © Provided by Dayton.com A view of Clifton Gorge State Nature Preserve from a 360-degree camera. FILE

🌞Hike the Clifton Gorge

The prettiest 2-mile stretch of the Little Miami State and National Scenic River east of John Bryan State Park, hiking the Clifton Gorge is a must-do summer adventure. It’s the perfect example of post-glacial canyon cutting and offers the most beautiful views for hikers.

🌞Hit the Great Miami River Trail

Are you ready for an adventure? With 75 miles of trails, the Great Miami River Trail is the ultimate spot for runners, skaters or cyclists. The trail winds through downtown Dayton, RiverScape, museums and several monuments.

Rock climbing at Urban Krag in downtown Dayton. TEESHA MCCLAM / STAFF FILE PHOTO © HANDOUT Rock climbing at Urban Krag in downtown Dayton. TEESHA MCCLAM / STAFF FILE PHOTO

🌞Climb the walls at Urban Krag

When that adventurous spirit strikes, you know where to head. The indoor rock climbing wall is designed to test your strength, provide a safe atmosphere and brings families together with a fun activity. Bonus: it’s great even when the sunny weather fails. For a full list of the center’s coronavirus policies, visit their Facebook page.

🌞Shop for local goods at 3rd on Third

Check out some of the area’s hottest vendors at this outdoor market that runs until October on every third Sunday of the month from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The outdoor market typically features art, crafts, antiques, vintage, collectibles, local handmade items, food trucks and more. For more information about 3rd on Third, head to their Facebook page.

🌞Climb burial mounds

One of the largest conical Native American burial mounds is located right here in Dayton. The Miamisburg Mound State Memorial is an exciting way to learn about the great Adena culture that once thrived in this area.

a person wearing sunglasses and standing in the grass: Young’s Jersey Dairy hosts an annual celebration each Memorial Day. Guests spent the days enjoying ice cream, miniature golf, the driving range, batting cages, slides and carnival rides. PHOTO / TOM GILLIAM PHOTOGRAPHY © Tom Gilliam Young’s Jersey Dairy hosts an annual celebration each Memorial Day. Guests spent the days enjoying ice cream, miniature golf, the driving range, batting cages, slides and carnival rides. PHOTO / TOM GILLIAM PHOTOGRAPHY

🌞Young’s Jersey Dairy

If you’ve never ventured to Young’s Jersey Dairy in Yellow Springs, now is the time to take your entire family for a day of endless fun. The working dairy farm features a plethora of family-friendly activities and treats, like two restaurants, homemade ice cream, farmstead cheese, miniature golf, a driving range, batting cages and an animal petting area.

Young’s Jersey Dairy is located at 6880 Springfield Xenia Rd. in Yellow Springs. The farm is open on Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.

For more information about Young’s Jersey Dairy, pay a visit to their website and Facebook page.

🌞Butterfly House at Cox Arboretum

The butterfly house at Cox Arboretum is one of our favorite places. After you visit it, you’ll see why.

🌞Hit the Aviation Trail

Whether you’re a Wright Brothers fanatic or a full-on aviation enthusiast, this is something you’ll want to check out. The Aviation Trail, located at the Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park, tells the story of Dayton’s aviation history.

🌞Take a tour of Dayton’s murals

a group of people standing in front of a sign: Tiffany Clark, a Dayton mural artist, (left) and members of Dayton Fire Fighters Local 136, Dennis Bristow, Marques Kincaid and Jim Burneka at a new mural on Buckeye Street commemorating the history of the Dayton Fire Departments. Dayton Fire Fighters Local 136 has teamed up with mural artist Tiffany Clark to create a 20-panel mural along Buckeye Street between Main and Warren Streets. The mural will tell the history of the Dayton Fire Department in vintage comic book style. LISA POWELL / STAFF © Lisa Powell Tiffany Clark, a Dayton mural artist, (left) and members of Dayton Fire Fighters Local 136, Dennis Bristow, Marques Kincaid and Jim Burneka at a new mural on Buckeye Street commemorating the history of the Dayton Fire Departments. Dayton Fire Fighters Local 136 has teamed up with mural artist Tiffany Clark to create a 20-panel mural along Buckeye Street between Main and Warren Streets. The mural will tell the history of the Dayton Fire Department in vintage comic book style. LISA POWELL / STAFF

Over the past few years, artists have begun covering parts of the Oregon District and greater Dayton area with unique murals. In need of a bit of artistic inspiration without enduring large crowds? Take a tour of a few of Dayton’s greatest murals, beginning at the new mural on Stratacache Tower and then branching out to a few of our favorites.

Also, be sure to check out Dayton’s latest mural — a 20-panel mural along Buckeye Street between Main and Warren streets that depicts the history of the Dayton Fire Department created by artist Tiffany Clark.

New mural paints the history of the Dayton Fire Department in comic book style

🌞Get spooky at the Witches Tower in Kettering

Built in the 1940s, the Witches Tower, or more commonly known as the Lookout Tower in Hills and Dales Metro Park, has been the subject of urban legends for decades. Located just off Patterson Boulevard in Kettering, the Witches Tower is a great place for some eerie fun. Though the tower is sealed, you can still get a good look at this haunting specimen of Dayton’s past.

🌞Visit where the first NFL game took place

Did you know that the first NFL game was hosted in Dayton? That’s right! The Gem City hosted the first NFL game at the Dayton Triangle Park on Oct. 3, 1920. This was the first game, played by the Dayton Triangles and Columbus Panhandles, of what would become the National Football League. Located in North Dayton, the Dayton Triangle Park now includes both a baseball/softball diamond and a soccer field.

8 things you should know about the Dayton Triangles, the team that started the NFL

a table topped with a blue umbrella: One of the dinning rooms at The Dock. Bill Lackey/Staff © Provided by Dayton.com One of the dinning rooms at The Dock. Bill Lackey/Staff

🌞Kick back at The Dock in Enon

Want a summer escape that feels less like Ohio and more like, perhaps, a tropical destination without leaving the Miami Valley? Simply pay a visit to The Dock Food and Spirits in Enon. The restaurant, with its whimsical tropical decor inside and outside of the restaurant, feels like a trip to Florida without the cost of planning a vacation of any kind. The restaurant is now open from Thursday through Sunday from 4:30-9 p.m. and seating is first-come, first served. Call the restaurant at 937-864-5011 when you arrive.

🌞Take the kids to Mike’s Bike Park

When the kids are feeling especially restless, take them to Mike’s Bike Park, a destination for BMX, mountain and hybrid bikes, as well as scooters and skateboards, on First Street in Dayton. Though the policies have changed to address concerns over the coronavirus (riders will have to bring their own equipment and there is a limit of 50 riders each day), there is still much fun to have at this 50,000 square-foot facility. The facility is open from Monday through Thursday from noon to 9 p.m., Friday from noon to 10 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. A day of riding costs $20 on Friday, Saturday and Sunday and $15 from Monday through Thursday. Children under 12 only pay $10 and must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

🌞Visit a waterfall

a large waterfall over a body of water: courtesy: HomeGrownGreat.com © Provided by Dayton.com courtesy: HomeGrownGreat.com

Find a serene escape in one of the area’s breathtaking nature preserves. Visit waterfalls at Clifton Gorge, Charleston Falls, Ludlow Falls and West Milton.

4 breathtaking waterfalls near Dayton

🌞Search for bald eagles at Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark

That’s right - there are plenty of bald eagles spotted at Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark.

🌞Explore the Downtown Dayton Sidewalk Sale

When: Friday, Sept. 4 from 5-8 p.m. and Saturday, Sept. 5 from noon to 5 p.m.

Where: Downtown Dayton

More info: Website | Facebook

More than 30 small businesses and locally owned restaurants in downtown Dayton will be participating in the Downtown Dayton Sidewalk Sale, set to take place on Friday night and Saturday afternoon.

Retailers will have merchandise for sale in their storefronts, and restaurants will be offering takeout food and drink specials for guests to enjoy as they stroll from shop to shop. Local artisans and musicians will also be present at this open-air event in downtown Dayton. Those interested in attending the event are encouraged to check the Downtown Dayton Partnership’s website for announcements regarding participating businesses and restaurants.

a street with cars parked on the side of a building: Dayton's Oregon District, the site of Ohio's deadliest mass shooting, pictured nearly one year later. TOM GILLIAM/CONTRIBUTED © Tom Gilliam Dayton's Oregon District, the site of Ohio's deadliest mass shooting, pictured nearly one year later. TOM GILLIAM/CONTRIBUTED

🌞Out on Fifth

When: Weekends in September and October from 5 p.m. Fridays to 10 p.m. Sundays

Where: Fifth Street in the Oregon District

More info: Facebook

Dayton’s famous Fifth Street will transform into a pedestrian walkway during Out on Fifth in the Oregon District. For the weekends in September and October, Fifth Street will be transformed into a pedestrian promenade, featuring expanded outdoor dining areas, sidewalk retail sales, entertainment, and other special activities.

The Oregon District business corridor will become Dayton’s first Designated Outdoor Refreshment Area (DORA), where people are allowed to consume alcohol on the streets that are purchased at participating businesses.

Fifth Street to shut down for outdoor dining, drinking, entertainment on weekends

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