4 places you should visit within driving distance of Dayton

Published: Friday, May 19, 2017 @ 6:35 AM

Summer is here and with it comes warm days, long nights and road trips. Explore these unique cities that are all within driving distance of Dayton (by driving distance).


Drive time: 1 hour to 90 minutes

Columbus’ Short North is perfect for either a day trip or a night on the town. With a multitude of eclectic shops and eating establishments running along High Street, there’s a little something for everyone. 


Drive time: 2.5 hours
Home to both the Kentucky Derby and the Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory, Louisville is steeped in Southern charm and bourbon. The city is also home to the Louisville Mega Cavern, which is the world’s only fully underground zip lines, bike course and ropes course which spans 100 acres under the city. 


Drive time: 2.5 hours

Toledo, situated on Lake Erie and the Maumee River, is known as both the Glass City and the “Water Recreation Capital of the Midwest.” The city showcases its past and present at the internationally known Toledo Museum of Art and the National Museum of the Great Lakes. 


Drive time: 4 hours

Pittsburgh, known as the City of Bridges, boasts of having the most bridges of any city in the world. The city has reinvented itself from a struggling steel town to a modern city that attracts those who love fine dining and the arts. 

Map detailing directions:

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Senior student barred from Christian school's graduation because she's pregnant

Published: Tuesday, May 23, 2017 @ 5:10 PM

Maddi Runkles is a senior at The Heritage Academy in Hagerstown, Maryland.

>> Read more trending news 

With a 4.0 grade point average, athletics commitments and a leadership role in the school’s Key Club, she was all set to graduate this spring.

Then came her son, Grayson.

Runkles learned she was pregnant in January. The Heritage Academy, a conservative Christian school, considers premarital sex a violation of its code of conduct, as do many institutions with similar values.

Despite the fact that she attends a Christian school, she said she considered an abortion. A 2014 study found that nearly 60 percent of women who have abortions identify as Catholic or Protestant.

“I had worked so hard for (graduation), and I made one mistake, and all my hard work was being taken away from me,” she told WUSA-9.

WUSA-9 reported that she was first removed from her position on the student council and suspended for two days. She was also told that she’d be forced to finish the school year at home, by herself.

But that changed when a group of students and parents petitioned the school to allow her to finish the year.

“I mean, all I did that was wrong was just have sex before marriage, which they don’t agree with,” said Runkles, who said carrying the child was“the right decision.”

That’s not how her high school sees it. Principal Dave Hobbs planned to tell the entire school about her pregnancy and resulting suspension, according to Students for Life, an anti-abortion group that’s gotten involved on her behalf.

When interviewed, Hobbs said the school’s code of conduct is applied on a case-by-case basis, but that the school has already been generous in allowing Runkles to finish her school year on the premises.

Her father, Scott Runkles, said he resigned from his position as a member of the school’s board because of how his daughter was treated.

Read more at WUSA-9.

Your guide to Dayton-area spray parks

Published: Tuesday, June 02, 2015 @ 12:00 AM
Updated: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 12:00 PM

If you don’t want to immerse yourself in water, a spray park might be the best option for you. 

Run among a variety of fountains or turn the kids loose for a few hours to cool off and splash in the puddles that collect around the structures.

WHAT: Interactive Fountains at the Greene Town Square 

WHERE: 102 Plum St., Beavercreek 

WHEN: The fountains are open 10 a.m.-9 p.m. daily through Labor Day. For certain events, the fountains may be shut off. Call 937-429-4961 for hours. Towel services are offered from 4-10 p.m.

INFO: Free to the public. For more info, call 937-429-4961.

>> MORE: Seven water parks worth the drive

WHAT: McIntosh Splash Park 

WHERE: 882 W. Riverview Ave., Dayton 

WHEN: Open daily from 9 a.m. to dusk from Memorial Day through Sept. 2. 

INFO: Free to the public. This park is themed after Paul Laurence Dunbar’s poem “The Seedling” and features various flower water elements. Call 937-333-8400 for more information. 

>> Here’s your Dayton summer bucket list — how many can you do?

WHAT: Five Oaks Spray Park 

WHERE: 329 Five Oaks Ave., Dayton 

WHEN: Open daily from 9 a.m. to dusk from Memorial Day through Sept. 2.

INFO: Free to the public. The kids will definitely love the giant pencil shooting out water. Call 937-333-8400 for more information. 

>>RELATED: Five tips to make travel easier this summer

WHAT: Mallory Park 

WHERE: 3037 Germantown St., Dayton 

WHEN:  Open daily from 9 a.m. to dusk from Memorial Day through Sept. 2.

INFO: Free to the public. If you’re a techie, this is a cool place to play as computer cables shoot water over a diskette. Call 937-333-8400 for more info.

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WHAT: Stuart Patterson Spray Park 

WHERE: 238 Baltimore St., Dayton

WHEN: Open daily from 9 a.m. to dusk from Memorial Day through Sept. 2.

INFO: Free to the public. Enjoy some medieval fun with dragons, horses and knights at this park.  Call 937-333-8400 for more information.

>>MORE: The BEST playgrounds you haven’t visited yet

WHAT: Walnut Hills Spray Park 

WHERE: 2340 Block of Wayne Ave., Dayton

WHEN: Open daily from 9 a.m. to dusk from Memorial Day through Sept. 2.

INFO: Free to the public. For all of you music lovers out there, you’ll absolutely love the piano that plays with water. Call 937-333-8400 for more information.

>>Here’s what we look forward to this summer ...

WHAT: Washington Park 

WHERE: 3620 E. Second St., Dayton

WHEN: Open daily from 9 a.m. until dusk from Memorial Day through Sept. 2.

INFO: Free to the public. Aviation fans will love this park. Check out Orville and Wilbur Wright with the Wright Flyer overlooking a map of the world. Call 937-333-8400 for more info.

>>RELATED: The perfect spots for the perfect picnic

WHAT: RiverScape MetroPark Interactive Fountains 

WHERE: 111 E. Monument Ave., Dayton

WHEN: Open daily from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. from Memorial Day through Labor Day.

INFO: Free to the public. The fountains are located in the festival plaza of the park. Call 937-274-0126 for more info.

>>MORE: Dayton’s best places to go paddling

WHAT: Fairview Spray Park 

WHERE: 2262 Elsmere Ave., Dayton

WHEN: Open daily from 9 a.m. until dusk from Memorial Day through Sept. 2.

INFO: Free to the public. This spray park is beach-themed. Call 937-333-8400 for more info.

>>MORE: Nothing beats FREE when it comes to summer activities with the kids

WHAT: Orchardly Park Splash Pad 

WHERE: 2599 Delaine Ave., Oakwood

WHEN: Open daily from sunrise to sunset through Labor Day.

INFO: Free to the public. This park was designed by children for children and includes a playground, basketball court, two tennis courts, green space and a shelter house to enjoy when the kids decide to take a break from the water. Call 937-297-2935 for more information.

>> We’ve got you covered on rainy days, too! Here are the best inside activities when the heat has you beat

WHAT: Island Metro Park 

WHERE: 101 E. Helena St., Dayton

WHEN: From May 23-June 3, park is open 4-7:50 p.m. Monday-Friday, 11 a.m.-7:50 p.m. Saturday and 1-7:50 p.m. Sunday. Regular summer hours from June 4-August 18 are 11 a.m.-7:50 p.m. Monday-Saturday and 1-7:50 p.m. Sunday.  From Aug. 18 to Labor Day hours are 4-7:50 p.m. Monday-Friday, 11 a.m.-7:50 p.m. Saturday and 1-7:50 p.m. Sunday. All hours are subject to change based on weather conditions. 

INFO: Free to the public. Grab a picnic basket and your swimsuits and get ready for a day of water fun. Call 937-275-7275 for more info.

>>You’ve never seen this park like this before ...

WHAT: Kennedy Park Splash Pad 

WHERE: 5073 Bigger Rd., Kettering

WHEN: The park is open from sunrise to sunset daily from Memorial Day through Labor Day.

INFO: Free to the public. The park is farm-themed and features water cannons, various spray features and tall water dumping buckets. For more information, call 937-296-2454.

>>RELATED: 12 museums to visit in Dayton this summer

WHAT: Thomas A. Cloud Park Splash Pad 

WHERE: Cloud Park, 4707 Brandt Pike, Huber Heights

WHEN: Open from 11 a.m.-8 p.m. daily from Memorial Day through Labor Day.

INFO: Free to the public. This splash pad is rainbow colored and located within Cloud Park, which features 1.2 miles of walking trails, various outdoor facilities and six rental shelters. For more info, call 937-496-7134.

>>MORE: Check out the best community pools in Dayton

WHAT: Centerville Activity Center Park Sprayground 

WHERE: 221 N. Main St., Centerville

WHEN: The Sprayground is open from 8:30 a.m.-8:30 p.m. daily from Memorial Day weekend through mid August.

INFO: Free to the public. The sprayground is not only for cooling off, but also has an all-access playground. Call 937-433-5155 for more info.

>>RELATED: Five reasons to check out Yellow Springs

WHAT: Bennett Play Depot and Splash Pad at Xenia Station

WHERE: 150 S. Miami Ave., Xenia, OH 45385

WHEN: The City of Xenia will officially unveil and dedicate the Bennett Play Depot and Splash Pad at Xenia Station at 2 p.m. Thursday, May 25.

INFO: Visit www.explorexenia.com for more information.

Celebrate summer (or anytime) with these incredible BBQ spots

Published: Friday, July 01, 2016 @ 6:00 AM
Updated: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 9:59 AM

BBQ ribs at Company 7 in Englewood. (Source: Facebook)

We have officially entered grilling and barbecue season.

The Fourth of July is the most popular holiday in the country for barbecuing, followed by Memorial Day and Labor Day.

The truth is that I have been on a BBQ high ever since I came across my favorite new food truck — The Beerded Pig — at a recent food truck rally a few weeks ago at the Yellow Cab Tavern. The salmon, brisket and pulled pork were all absolutely phenomenal and I’m hoping to enjoy it again very soon.

>> Your guide to Dayton food trucks

With a renewed taste for BBQ, I’ve spent the last few weeks searching for new favorites in southern Ohio and remembering others that I have enjoyed in the past. Here’s the list that I have come up with …

Beaugard’s Southern Bar “B” Q
975 S. South St., Wilmingtonwww.beaugardsbbq.com or (937) 655-8100

Get ready for some southern hospitality and some excellent Arkansas BBQ. Accessorize your plate of juicy, smoked meat with sweet potato pie, greens, hush puppies, macaroni salad and some fresh brewed tea and you’re ready to roll.

>> 6 amazing hot dogs to try in Dayton

The Beerded Pig
Food truck, locations varyhttp://thebeerdedpig.com

Those smoked salmon tacos … holy moly. Some of the best I’ve had in ages, but then all the meats and ‘cue they were doling out seemed to be truly terrific across the board. Follow the Beerded Pig’s social media feed and try to track their bright orange food truck down if you are able and then let me know where they are at. I want more!

Bullwinkles Top Hat Bistro
19 N. Main St., Miamisburgwww.bullwinklestophatbistro.com or (937) 859-7677

If you are able and inclined, ride the bike path out for some pre-rib exercise. The ribs are where it’s at when it comes to this popular Miamisburg staple, so look no further. Best to arrive hungry.

>> 5 things to try at Dayton’s Root Beer Stande



City Barbeque | www.citybbq.com
2330 N. Fairfield Road, Beavercreek937-320-00005 E. Franklin St., Centerville(937) 312-1350

The food at this Columbus-based chain is darn good. Am always happy to eat at City Barbecue when the opportunity presents itself. The beef brisket is not to be missed and the new double-smoked brisket tacos served up with smoked corn, tomato and chimichurri salsa are delicious and priced right (3 for $9).

Company 7 BBQ
1001 S Main St., Englewood(937) 836-2777

At the risk of sounding like a broken record … I can’t get enough of those smoked wings! I’ve written about them before and there’s a reason I keep going back for more.

>> Your guide to the best burgers in Dayton

Double D’s BBQ
69 Maple St., Waynesville(937) 554-2916

The “BBQ Hotshot” is popular for a reason — a cornbread waffle is piled with pulled pork, BBQ sauce and coleslaw. It’s all delicious, but this is a dish you’re not going to find on most menus.

Eli’s BBQ
3313 Riverside Dr, Cincinnati(513) 533-1957

This Cincinnati gem’s Riverside location is open seven days a week from 11 a.m. - 9 p.m. The Hickory smoked ribs and hickory smoked turkey breast are tender and meaty and the pulled pork is infused with garlic, cayenne and sugar rub that will bring a smile to your face. Add some sides like jalapeño cheddar grits, jalapeño cornbread, dirty baked beans and you’ll really be cookin’. The record player serenading with wonderful scratchy classics from the past is a nice bonus.

Fatback’s Barbecue
1334 Linden Ave, Daytonwww.fatbacksbarbecue.com or (937) 254-7427

Smoked ribs, pork, brisket and chicken are cooked up low and slow until the meat is perfectly tender and then served up with Memphis-style sauces to accompany. The pig art surrounding the walls is fun and the owners are incredibly proud of what they are doing. It shows.



Hickory Bar-B Que
1082 Brown St., Daytonwww.hickorybarbq.com or (937) 228-5252

This gem located down the street from The University of Dayton gets packed during the dinner hours, so expect a wait. The BBQ chicken dinner ($13.25) and rib dinner ($19.25) don’t disappoint.

KD’s Kettering BBQ
3911 Marshall Road, Kettering
http://ketteringbarbequecarryout.com or (937) 293-3592

Spring for the broasted pork chops with broasted potato wedges, hot bacon slaw and corn casserole. You won’t be sorry.

Pit-to-Plate BBQ
1527 Compton Road, Mount Healthywww.pittoplatebbq.com or (513) 931-9100.

If there was a competition for sides and desserts, this place would probably take home top prize. And with meat served up by the pound you know they are serious about their barbecue. The baby back ribs are about as tender as they come and the other meats options aren’t far behind.

Smokin’ Bar-B-Que
200 E. 5th St., Dayton(937) 586-9790

You can’t beat this downtown spot that offers speedy take-out service and evening hours. Although some of the sides are underwhelming, the portions are generous and the meat is tender and delicious.

275 Pictoria Drive, Cincinnati(513) 671-7667

They had me at fried green tomatoes. Their motto — “if it’s leagal … we’ll smoQ it!” — cracks me up. Good to be aware that Mondays are $19 slab of ribs night if you find yourself in Cincinnati on a Monday hankering for some smoked meats.

Star City BBQ1015 S Main St., Miamisburg(937) 530-2020http://starcitybbq.com

This unassuming, quaint stop filled with small town charm has a nice-sized menu that’s priced right. It’s a throw-back with solid food that satisfies.

Dayton Eats looks at the regional food stories and restaurant news that make mouths water. Contact Alexis Larsen at alexis.e.larsen@hotmail.com with your foodie news.

Crafted & Cured has a ‘charcuterie cone’ and you need it in your life

Published: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 6:00 AM

Crafted & Cured at 531 Wayne Ave. in Dayton hosted a

Meats, cheese and bread. All in a portable little cone. Why didn’t we think of this?

Lucky for us the geniuses at Crafted & Cured have us covered. For a cool $6, you can get your very own charcuterie cone.

>> 3 new businesses coming to Dayton Oregon District

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Look, it’s super adorable (and delicious):

Here’s another photo, in case you aren’t convinced.

>> This raw bar in the Oregon District had its soft opening, and we can’t wait to try it

>> Is Dayton a ‘reservation’ restaurant town now?

And ONE MORE, this one of an actual charcuterie board. You know, just in case. Happy eating!

>> PHOTOS: Soft opening at Crafted & Cured

Have a favorite quirky dish in Dayton you want to share? Let us know about it: contact@dayton.com.