4 breathtaking waterfalls near Dayton you must visit

Published: Thursday, July 13, 2017 @ 6:00 AM

Clifton Gorge has one of the must-visit waterfalls in the Dayton-area.

Everyone knows TLC’s famous words of advice, “Don’t go chasing waterfalls.” But we think it’s in your best interest to do exactly the opposite. 

Fall is the perfect time to do a little waterfall adventuring to cool off and unwind. 

Perhaps surprising to many people even from the Dayton-area, there are actually quite a few prime waterfall spots nearby. 

Here are a handful of waterfall destinations we suggest you “chase” down:

>> 50 ideas for your Dayton summer bucket list


Location: 110 Covington Ave., Ludlow Falls

The next time a heavy rain hits, make plans to find Ludlow Falls, located under the Route 48 bridge that runs over Ludlow Creek. 

When the flow of the creek is higher, the wide waterfall is quite impressive in size. An old stairway leads to a breathtaking view from below, or, walk along the edge and see the spectacle from above.

>> More than 20 ways to appreciate nature at our parks

>> The nature preserve in Dayton you probably didn’t know about

(Photo: www.gowaterfalling.com)


Location: 2535 Ross Road, Tipp City

Arguably the most popular waterfall in the Dayton-area, this is one stop you should be sure to visit on your adventure. 

A part of the 216-acre nature preserve, Charleston Falls is hidden among nearly 4 miles of hiking trails. The stunning cascade pours over a jagged drop off into a calm pool, just a few feet away from the boardwalk trail. 

This waterfall is surely a nature photographer’s dream come true. 

>> PHOTOS: WOW! An evening of lights at Charleston Falls

>> The living tree tunnel you must see

(Photo: www.homegrowngreat.com)


Location: 2381 Ohio 343, Yellow Springs

This preserve near John Bryan State Park has two trails that travel the rim of a 40-foot deep limestone gorge that holds a portion of the Great Miami River. 

>> Top 12 hiking trails in Dayton and nearby

Along the gorge trails, steep, sudden drops in the stream reveal a few small waterfalls that are modest but rewarding to stumble upon.

Just east of the preserve, is the historic Clifton Mill. Although it’s man-made, the mill is home to a picturesque 20-foot waterfall that will remind you why you love the Dayton-area so dearly.

>> The hike you must take at Clifton Gorge

(Photo: www.gowaterfalling.com)


Location: 204 N. Miami St., West Milton

If you’re short on time but still need a mother-nature pick-me-up, this waterfall can be your quick-fix. 

>> Take your book club adventures outdoors 

Located in the village of West Milton, the multi-tiered fall is easy to access, with almost no hiking required. A stairway leads right up to the base where the water flows gradually from smaller and smaller cascades. 

This beloved, small-town wonder is straight out of your favorite fairy tale story. 

>> You have to try this new trail at Hocking Hills

>> Add Hocking Hills to your bucket list

(Photo: www.gowaterfalling.com)

The SINFULLY sweet brunch dish coming to this new restaurant’s menu

Published: Friday, November 24, 2017 @ 6:00 AM

Dewberry 1850 Restaurant and Lounge's cannoli French toast includes maple syrup and macerated berries.
Dewberry 1850 Restaurant and Lounge.
Dewberry 1850 Restaurant and Lounge's cannoli French toast includes maple syrup and macerated berries.(Dewberry 1850 Restaurant and Lounge.)

Here are three words that are sure to get your attention: Cannoli French Toast.

Tim Skiber, the new executive director at Dewberry 1850 Restaurant and Lounge inside The Dayton Marriott at the University of Dayton, is planning to add Cannoli French Toast and other items to the restaurant’s à la carte weekend brunch menu early next year. 

>> RELATED: This hidden restaurant is probably not on your radar yet, but should be
It’s exactly what you are envisioning.

The corners are cut off white bread and the bread is rolled and loaded with cannoli filling, Skiber said. 

The creation is rolled, dipped in egg and sauteed. 

“It is extremely unhealthy, but really good,” said Skiber, a New York native from a culinary family. 

The restaurant is part of a $23 million hotel renovation the university completed this summer. 

Dewberry 1850 Restaurant and Lounge's stuffed Challah Bread includes egg white, arugula, tomato, roasted red pepper, local honey and ricotta cheese. ________________________________________(Dewberry 1850 Restaurant and Lounge.)

Dewberry replaced Gambit’s Bar and Grill and Parmizzano’s Restaurant. Sharkey’s Poolside Lounge also closed for good as part of the renovation.

>> RELATED: What is the food like at Dewberry 1850 

Other items to try? Skiber pointed to the P.L.T.E.— pork belly, romaine lettuce, tomato jam and a sunny side up egg — on the restaurant’s dinner menu as an example.

“We are bringing in things locally when we can,” he noted. 

 >> 4 pork belly dishes you have to try in Dayton 


The yet to be finalized new à la carte brunch menu will also include a strawberry stuffed French toast and frittatas. 

Dewberry will continue its well-known $14.50 daily breakfast buffet.

An omelette and waffle station is included during Saturday and Sunday brunches.

>> MORE: 9 of the best brunch spots in Dayton

It also plans to continue the craft beer and gourmet food pairing series it started early next year with a collaboration with Toxic Brew Company in early 2018. 

Warped Wing Brewing Company and Dayton Beer Company has already been featured. 

>> 12 signature Dayton beers

Devin Duncan, the hotel’s director of food and beverage, said the restaurant will be far from stuffy. It will aims to set itself apart from the pack. 

“We are definitely looking for people (customers) who are looking to try new things,” Duncan said. “I want people who dig food and like a good beverage.”

Dewberry 1850 Restaurant and Lounge's smoked turkey hash includes tomato jam, egg sunny up, roasted jalapeno and marble rye toast. The dish will be on the restaurant's upcoming weekend brunch menu.(Dewberry 1850 Restaurant and Lounge.)

Dewberry 1850 Restaurant and Lounge's stuffed Challah Bread includes egg white, arugula, tomato, roasted red pepper, local honey and ricotta cheese. The dish will be on the restaurant's upcoming weekend brunch menu.(Dewberry 1850 Restaurant and Lounge.)

5 Dayton-specific ways to entertain your house guests during the holidays

Published: Monday, December 26, 2016 @ 11:16 AM
Updated: Friday, November 24, 2017 @ 12:51 PM

Electric go-carts zip around the track at Scene75, a perfect destination for indoor family fun. TY GREENLEES/STAFF
Contributing Writer
Electric go-carts zip around the track at Scene75, a perfect destination for indoor family fun. TY GREENLEES/STAFF(Contributing Writer)

Sometimes during the holidays, you have a house full of people. We know you love them, but sometimes there can be a little too much togetherness. 

If it’s time to get people off the couch and out doing something, here are five ways to entertain the relatives:


How about an epic game of laser tag with your favorite relatives? Figure out who earns the crown of king or queen of mini-golf or mini-bowling? Maybe you just want to let the kiddos bounce off some energy someplace more suitable than your beds on inflatable slides, obstacle courses and more? Or maybe you want to let the kids spend some of that holiday cash on arcade games?

Scene75 entertainment center is a one-stop destination for gaming and indoor fun, from go karts, to spinning bumpers, to indoor mini-golf, mini-bowling, inflatable slides, courses, laser tag and arcade games. Restaurant and snack bars on site.

WHERE: Scene75, 6196 Poe Ave., Dayton

MORE INFO: Website  | (937) 619-3200

Sky Zone Trampoline Park in Washington Twp. can help your kids unleash some energy. FILE PHOTO(Contributing Writer)


They don’t have to bounce off your walls. At SkyZone, literally bouncing off the walls is encouraged. This indoor trampoline park features traditional trampolines, dodge ball arenas, basketball hoops for dunking and foam pits. 

Be sure to fill out the online waiver and pick a jump time in advance. 

WHERE: Sky Zone Dayton, 976 Senate Drive, Washington Twp.

COST: 30-minute jump, $12; 60-minute jump, $16; 90-minute jump, $20; 120-minute jump, $22

MORE INFO: Website | 937-396-6600

Zombie Dogz on Brown Street in Dayton.(Photo by Amelia Robinson)


It’s the holidays, so why stop eating now? Dayton is famous for some of its signature dishes. Square-cut pizza like you find at Marion’s and Cassano’s, for one. Take your relatives out to enjoy some of Dayton’s more classic dining destinations like the Pine Club or the Oakwood Club or the new generation of must-try foods from Zombie Dogz, to Corner Kitchen, to Lily’s Bistro, to Salar, to Wheat Penny.

>> RELATED: 7 foods that scream Dayton

>> RELATED: Home for the holidays? 10 Dayton must-haves

If this is a grown-up outing, a visit to some of Dayton’s most famous craft breweries is simply a must. 

>> RELATED: Best new Dayton ‘gems’ to show your holiday guests

Inside the U.S. Air Force Museum.


One of the best ways to explore Dayton’s aviation history, whether you’re a kid or a grown-up, is none other that at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. Dayton is home to the oldest and largest military aviation museum in the world, located at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. It’s fun, and it will make you smarter. While you’re there, see some bad-ass planes, pretend you’re a pilot in a flight simulator or check out a film in the IMAX theater.

WHERE: National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, 1100 Spaatz St., Wright-Patterson AFB

HOURS: Open daily 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

COST: Free admission and parking

MORE INFO: Website | (937) 255-3286

Ohio’s largest tree of lights, 200 feet tall, is now lighting up the night sky at Carillon Historical Park in Dayton. The holiday fun continues with a month-long celebration filled with holiday-themed activities at the park. TODD JACKSON/STAFF(Contributing Writer)


In case you were too busy to make it out to one of Dayton’s best holiday displays before Christmas, you still have time, weather permitting. Here are three of the very best:

Clifton Mill: The legendary light show – complete with 3.5 million lights – takes three months to set up but the result is nothing short of breathtaking as the historic mill transforms from complete darkness to a colorful, twinkling holiday wonderland with the flip of a switch. The display continues nightly through Dec. 31. (closes at 8 p.m. New Year’s Eve). Admission is $10 for ages 7 and up (6 and younger are free).

Info: Website.

Woodland Lights: For more than two decades, Woodland Lights, at Countryside Park near the Washington Twp. Recreation Center, has been brightening the holiday season for local families. The lights will twinkle through Dec. 30. Admission is $4 (free for children 2 and younger)

Info: Website

Carillon Christmas: A new tradition has begun at Carillon Historical Park with Christmas lights aplenty and the dazzling Carillon Tree of Light. Live holiday music, historical craft demonstrations, traditional holiday fare and visits with Santa are just part of the fun. The little ones won’t want to miss taking a spin on the Carousel of Dayton Innovation, riding the Midnight Express or watching a puppet show. Round out the night with a gingerbread cookie and hot cocoa. Open nightly this week through Dec. 30 from 5-10 p.m. The cost is: $8 per adult (ages 18-59), $7 per senior (ages 60+), $5 per child (ages 3-17) and free to children under 3 and Dayton History members.

Info: Website

>> RELATED: 10 best places to see holiday lights

Take your out-of-town guests to these 3 cool Dayton brewpubs

Published: Friday, November 24, 2017 @ 6:00 AM

We take you on a tour of downtown craft beer breweries and bars. Video by Amelia Robinson

The biggest food holiday of the year has come and gone, ushering in the biggest holiday season of the year.

With December taking center stage in just a few days, it often can mean meeting and hosting family and friends over the course of the month. But what to do and where to go?

Some of the best options can be destinations that feel a little bit more like an adventure. The Miami Valley craft brewing scene has exploded in the last several years and offers some creative settings that a little more unusual than the typical restaurant destinations — and which offer brewtastic views to grab a pint or a flight by. Some, not all, offer a dining experience to go along with.

>> This hidden restaurant is probably not on your radar yet, but should be

Here’s a look at several local brewery destinations that offer the complete package — the setting, the beer and the food — for you and your holiday posse to pass the time.

Pro-tip: If you are traveling out of town for the holidays, download the Ohio On Tap app from the Ohio Craft Brewers Association. It’s a great resource to find Ohio breweries statewide while you are road tripping to your final destination. Visit ohiocraftbeer.org/app to learn more.

The list below is partial. I will follow up with part two of my recommendations next week.

>> 12 must-try signature Dayton beers

Carillon Brewing head brewer Kyle Spears. 2014 file photo by Jim Witmer(Staff Writer)

Carillon Brewing Co.

1000 Carillon Blvd., Dayton

937-910-0722 or www.carillonbrewingco.org

Beer: Carillon Brewing Company is the nation’s only production brewery in a museum. Each batch brewed is a historical recreation of the earliest beers made in Ohio’s breweries. If you haven’t been before, grab a flight of four beers for $7 to get a sense of what it’s about. Carillon Brewing Company ales use grain that has been floor malted just as it was done in the 19th century and, when available, Ohio-grown hops. All brewed in open copper kettles, fermented in oak barrels, and unfiltered. Most beers feature varying levels of tartness from the wild yeasts and bacteria that join in on the fermentation.

Food: This isn’t a menu that will blow you away, but it is solid and the setting is unparalleled — a living history exhibit fashioned after and inspired by the more than two dozen breweries built in the Dayton region during the 19th century. This will be a conversation destination for anyone who has never been before. The food too is similar to what would have been historically available in Dayton in the 1850s. The Brewers Sampler ($10) featuring seasonal cheeses, wursts, house-pickled beets, spent grain crackers and bread is perfect to share with others. The wurst platter ($12) featuring the choice of two wursts, topped with sauerkraut and two sides is a filling meal that can be split.

Who to take: History buffs and folks who crave something that’s a little off the beaten path. You really can’t beat the setting.

>> Chef shocked that Ohio’s 2nd-oldest inn is still for sale

Crooked Handle is launching an election-themed beer promotion that pits Deplorable Donald Foam-Over IPA against Crooked Hillary Rye Pale Ale. Photo by JIM WITMER

Crooked Handle Brewing Co.

760 N. Main St., Springboro

937-790-3450 or www.chbeer.com

Beer: With 14 taps dedicated to most of the styles of beer you’d expect — everything from ales to IPAs to porters to stouts — Crooked Handle is working hard to put its stamp on the local craft beer scene in the Miami Valley. Every Tuesday and Thursday is a Growler Grab Day featuring $5 off all 64 oz. fills.

Food: The taproom itself only has straightforward cheese and meat plates ($8-$9) available, but I am including this because Dorothy Lane Market in Springboro is right next door. It may not be a restaurant in the brewery, but what’s a 50-yard walk? With DLM’s Jack’s Grill, fully stocked deli, fresh sushi and salad bar next door you have everything you need to have one heck of a meal. Once you have it the helpful staff with offer suggestions on what to pair with your meal du jour. As Crooked Handle says of its neighbor, “Your menu is a grocery store, so imagine the possibilities!”

>>Two local restaurants — usually closed for lunch — to open in December

Who to take: Anyone who has never experienced the magic of a DLM or a large group with very different requirements and tastes when it comes to food.

>> A guide to Dayton breweries

Fifth Street Brewpub’s Scottish Reign was one of the bottled beers sold a couple of weeks ago at the brewpub’s fifth anniversary bash. SUBMITTED(Staff Writer)

Fifth Street Brewpub

1600 E. Fifth St., Dayton

937-443-0919 or www.fifthstreetbrewpub.com

Beer: Fifth Street Brewpub’s description says it all: “You will find a wide array of beers on tap at any given time of the year at FSB. From styles steeped in tradition to boundary-pushing techniques and ingredient combinations. Rest assured, all FSB beers will be brewed with the highest quality ingredients and held to strict quality control standards. Whether you’re new to craft beer or a seasoned beer geek, we have a beer for you.” With a warm bar and a great setting in St. Anne’s Hill Historic District, this is a sweet little spot place to grab a pint and some food.

Food: If it’s a weekend or it’s busy, you will want to get there early as seats can fill up fast. The menu is brewpub food with some healthy options thrown in that has a little something for everyone. The salads, vegan spinach wrap ($10), vegetarian lettuce wraps ($10) and pork or chicken lettuce wraps ($11) and salmon B.E.L.T. ($13, seared salmon, pecanwood-smoked bacon, lettuce, tomato, and an over-easy egg with a housemade creamy garlic-herb aioli, served on a toasted telera roll) will all likely appeal to those with a healthy dining conscience. For everyone else, there are plenty of other options to tempt.

Who to take: Those looking to eat a little healthier or who are on a vegetarian diet, and those who love a historic setting filled with community co-op spirit.

>> Dayton’s walking beer trail

GIFT GUIDE: How to buy for EVERYONE on your list -- right here in downtown Dayton

Published: Friday, November 24, 2017 @ 6:00 AM

Succulents are adorable AND nearly indestructible -- in other words, win-win. Get them at Luna Gifts & Botanicals in the Oregon District. PHOTO / Tess Vella-Collette
Succulents are adorable AND nearly indestructible -- in other words, win-win. Get them at Luna Gifts & Botanicals in the Oregon District. PHOTO / Tess Vella-Collette

It’s official: the holiday season is here. That means it’s time for pumpkin pie, trimming the tree, and shopping.

This weekend in particular is a big one for your wallet, but if you’re like me, the mall is the last place you want to be. The idea of pushing and shoving my neighbors the day after I’ve just given thanks isn’t exactly appealing, so I opt for a Small Business Saturday shopping excursion instead.

There are so many unique and interesting places to shop in Downtown Dayton, but if you’re not sure where to start, here is your guide to downtown Dayton holiday shopping, and the perfect gifts for everyone on your list. 

Tote bag available at Skeleton Dust Records, which just opened in downtown Dayton's Fire Blocks District. PHOTO / Tess Vella-Collette

1. For the Music Lover

  • Have a friend who loves spinning records? There is no better place to beef up their record collection than Omega Music in the Oregon District. With a wide selection of previously owned classics, and new music, there is a section for every musical taste. 

  • Newly-opened Skeleton Dust Records located in the Fire Block District has the perfect swag for that music snob friend of yours (we all have one). This cassette tape tote bag is stylish and practical, and only $10. A perfect steal for toting around their tunes. 

>> Skeleton Dust Records opens in downtown Dayton

>> Record shop owner Luke Tandy shares his ideal ‘last meal’ in Dayton

A gift card to one of downtown Dayton's amazing restaurants is ALWAYS a welcome gift. PHOTO / Tess Vella-Collette

2. For the Food Lover

  • Add some spice to your foodie friend’s holiday this year and check out Spice Paradise. This shop in the Oregon District has unique and delicious gift options. My personal favorite: their dry mix soup. Vegetarian delights, gluten free options, and all soups are preservative-free. Simply add the dry ingredients to boiling water and meal time is figured out. Spice Paradise sells bulk spices, or will put together a spice blend for you! 

  • Tis the season for gift cards! There is no shortage of great restaurants to choose from in downtown Dayton, so give the gift of food to one of your restaurant loving friends. It’s easy for you, and who knows, your friend might even invite you along for dinner! 

These lovely mix-and-match landscape paintings are available at Dayton Visual Arts Center's Art to Buy holiday shop in downtown Dayton. PHOTO / Tess Vella-Collette

3. For your Artsy Friend

  • Around the holidays there is no better place to get a unique and one of a kind gift for the artistically inclined person in your life than the Dayton Visual Arts Center’s “Art to Buy” sale. Every item for sale is made by local artists, and prices start at $25. One highlight from their collection: Jennifer Glance’s mix and match landscapes on canvas. Buy one, or collect a few.

  • Knitwear is making a big comeback, and local artist Brittany Daniel is selling creations from her crochet line Je Crochete on Small Business Saturday at Third Perk in Downtown Dayton. There are hats, scarves, cowls, and my favorite: the schoodie. A scarf and hoodie combined for $35. Get yourself a nice cup of coffee, grab some lunch, and shop!

>> PHOTOS: 8 gifts made by local artists you can find at DVAC Art to Buy

Double-gold-medal-winning Dayton Gin was first released by Belle of Dayton just last fall. FILE(Staff Writer)

4. For the Booze Connoisseur

  • If you’re a Daytonian and you haven’t tried Belle of Dayton, then you are missing out. Their vodka is smooth and refined and their gin is award-winning...no, really. Earlier this year, Belle of Dayton’s gin was awarded a double gold medal at the San Francisco World Spirits competition. So pick your friend up a bottle at Arrow Wine today! If your friend goes for experience over material item, arrange for a tour of Belle of Dayton’s distillery in the Oregon District, and stick around for a $5 flight!

  • DVAC’s Art to Buy Sale has some gifts for your drinking buddy, too. Pick up an artfully crafted bottle opener from Kevin Tunstall’s collection for $25, or hand blown stemless wine glasses from Nadine Saylor, starting at $28 per glass.

>> Dayton distillery snags rare double-gold medal at San Fran competition

Hat with accessories at BRIM in downtown Dayton's Oregon District. PHOTO / Tess Vella-Collette

5. For the Fashionista

  • For the person in your life who is always putting together fabulous ensembles, help them top off the outfit with a hat from Brim, the accessory shop in the Oregon District. For the lady in your life, pick out a wide-brimmed hat and deck it out with a funky feather, scarf or pin. Brim’s got a wide variety of great accessories to style her hat over the top. Prices range from $50 to $250.

  • Don’t forget about the guy taking fashion risks, too. Not only does Brim carry amazing men’s hats, they have ties, sunglasses and beard care products. My favorite gift for your special guy: Dream Beard oils, and speciality beard maintenance kits. They leave your man’s beard feeling silky soft and tame. Prices range from $18-40.

Succulents are adorable AND nearly indestructible -- in other words, win-win. Get them at Luna Gifts & Botanicals in the Oregon District. PHOTO / Tess Vella-Collette

6. For the Plant Lady

  • Succulents are all the rage these days, which is lucky for even the plant-killer, since they are nearly indestructable. If you’re looking for a great gift for someone who loves greenery, look no further than Luna Gifts & Botanicals, located on Wayne Ave. With a huge variety of plants starting around $8, you can get a beautifully curated selection -- and a pot to put them in -- for around $40.

  • If you’re in the market for fun and eclectic gifts like Luna has to offer, be sure to check out Heart Mercantile on 5th Street. It’s owned by some of the same boss ladies, and they’ve got tons of great stuff for the home, or for your friend with a sense of humor! 

>> This Dayton store is selling vagina ornaments for your Christmas tree

>> Oregon District business Heart Mercantile is expanding, moving (Oct. 2017)

These "Mr. & Mr." mugs are available at Agnes & Orson in downtown Dayton's Cannery building. PHOTO / Tess Vella-Collette

7. For The Socially Conscious Friend

  • Agnes & Orson is officially the one-stop gift shop in Dayton, located on the ground floor of the Cannery Lofts Apartments. But there, you can also shop for a good cause. Agnes & Orson carries gifts for your recently married friends, offering Mr. and Mr. mugs ($25), and ladies tees that exclaim “Love is Love” ($30). Let your support be known by gifting for a cause.

  • Agnes & Orson also gives back. A candle makes the perfect hostess gift this year, and with the purchase of Sydney Hale Co. candles, 10% of the $30 candle goes to local animal shelters. You can feel good about this purchase by helping pups and cats in need. Also, the available scents are incredible! My favorite: Fir and Blue Sage.

Agnes & Orson gives back: with the purchase of Sydney Hale Co. candles, 10% of the $30 candle goes to local animal shelters. A favorite scent: Fir & Blue Sage. PHOTO / Tess Vella-Collette

>> 2 new stores coming to Cincinnati Premium Outlets 

Sterling Studio in the Oregon District is another place to pick up a piece for any lady on your christmas list, with its mix of eclectic, funky and classic pieces. PHOTO / Tess Vella-Collette

8. For The Finer Friend

  • We all have that person in our lives who likes the finer things. In fact, I am that person! If it’s sparkly or it shimmers, I want it. Which is why jewelry always makes a great gift for that special someone. Another gem from the DVAC art to buy sale are gorgeous gold leaf and silver earrings made by Jennifer Perry. The earrings are unique, handmade and reasonably priced!

  • Sterling Studio in the Oregon District is another place to pick up a piece for any lady on your christmas list, with its mix of eclectic, funky and classic pieces. I loved their matching earring and necklace sets made of fine stones such as Kyanite and Pink Aura Quartz from $89-375.

>> 5 ways to stay out of debt this holiday season

Some great gift options for the coffee lover in your life at Press in the Oregon District. PHOTO / Tess Vella-Collette

9. For the Coffee Lover

  • Dayton is lucky enough to have an amazing coffee scene. Press is at the top of my list for coffee shops in Dayton, particularly because the coffee served is roasted in-house. The roasterie is called Wood Burl Coffee, it’s rich, complex and never bitter. For the coffee lover on your list, consider buying them a pound of coffee and the accoutrements to make Press’s coffee in their own home. Throw in a Wood Burl shirt and you’ve got a perfectly caffeinated gift!

  • Another great coffee shop is Ghostlight Coffee, located in the South Park neighborhood. It’s cozy and comfortable, with lots of great places to sit and read. They have some of the best tea in town, and they have a ton of great gift options. I personally love their black and white coffee pot with matching cream and sugar set. This set is going quickly, with only a few left in stock for $50, but there are other cool Chemex coffee brewers with modern and funky design that would perk up anyone’s morning!  

This mug and creamer set from Ghostlight Coffee makes a fabulous gift. PHOTO / Tess Vella-Collette

>> Daytonians of the Week: Brett and Janelle Barker, owners of Press

>> This popular Dayton coffee shop is launching a food truck with gourmet ice cream sandwiches

10. For The Culture Seeker
  • Some of us prefer experiences over material items, and there is no greater experience during the holidays than seeing a show at The Schuster Center. Tickets for The Nutcracker are on sale now. Treat your cultured friend to a night at the ballet, and grab dinner at Citilies before the show!

  • The Schuster Center isn’t the only great place to catch a show! The Neon movie theatre is another favorite spot to take in an art house film, or even a family classic. The neon sells gift certificates in $5 and $10 denominations, and tee shirts for $18. Every Saturday in December the Neon will feature their Holiday Family Series where they play holiday favorites like Home Alone and Miracle on 34th Street. Children 12 and under get in free!