DAYTON ARCADE: 5 things you don’t want to miss during rare public tour this weekend

Published: Thursday, May 03, 2018 @ 2:00 PM

Drone footage reveals beautiful interior of Dayton Arcade

The Dayton Arcade, closed since the early 1990s, will open again for the public Saturday during the Downtown Housing Tour. 

»»The Dayton Arcade is opening to the public, and you can get a rare look inside at special event

The tour, sponsored by the Downtown Dayton Partnership, will give visitors a glimpse at plans for the Arcade’s redevelopment. 

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1. The centerpiece. Visitors will tour the Arcade rotunda, the centerpiece of the structure. The three-story dome is 90 feet in diameter by 70-feet high and is supported by 16 bays of iron pillars with semi-circular and semi-elliptical arches that spanned the original indoor market. 

The glass dome in the Dayton Arcade is three stories high and 90 feet in diameter. LISA POWELL / STAFF(Lisa Powell)

2. Oak leaves and acorns. Keep an eye out for the colorful turkeys with crested tails and brackets detailed with oak leaves and acorns made out of sheet metal encircling the rotunda. 

»»History: The Arcade, Dayton’s crowning jewel


3. Stylish facade. A grand three and a half story Flemish style facade signifies the main entrance on Third Street. Stone corbels, carved lion heads and the mask of a Dutch girl in the keystone position over the entrance are among the architectural details tucked among the turreted four story projected windows overlooking Courthouse Square. 

»»WATCH: You have NEVER seen the Dayton Arcade like this, and it will amaze you

The Dayton Arcade, which opened in 1904, closed its doors for good in 1991. It was describes as "one of the country's most modern and complete structures of its' kind," in a 1904 Dayton Daily News story. LISA POWELL / STAFF(Lisa Powell)

4. Time travel. Use your imagination and envision 200 vendor stalls under the glass dome in the early 1900s. Exotic Jamaica bananas, Messina lemons as well as parakeets and canaries were sold along-side coffee, pies, breads and ice cream. 

»»Dayton Arcade: Photographs reveal landmark frozen in time

5. A giant building. The Dayton Arcade is a complex, so says the National Register of Historic Places Inventory- Nomination Form. The form lists two distinct buildings: the Fourth Street Arcade Building, where visitors will enter Saturday, and the Third Street Arcade. Make sure to stroll around the complex and find the sleeping giant sprawled along Third Street.