Experience the exciting and intriguing culture of Your Downtown
Downtown Dayton is proud to be home to our region’s finest arts and cultural activities and venues. With everything from dazzling Broadway musicals and art exhibits by European masters to amazing works and performances by our own up-and-coming artists, there is always something creative happening downtown:
- More than 300 performances come to downtown each year
- Dayton has a unique collection of galleries and museums focusing on such varied subjects as art, cars, and peace
- Dayton is home to the oldest modern dance company in Ohio and one of the largest modern dance companies between New York and Chicago
Ready to paint the town? Follow these links to find what you're looking for:
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The Neon Movies
130 E. Fifth Street
Want to see a movie you can’t catch at any other cinema in town? The Neon is an independent movie theatre located just outside the Oregon Arts District. The cinema features the best in foreign and independent films, and its concession stand features beer, wine and Boston Stoker coffee drinks, as well as traditional fresh popcorn and soda. The Neon also boasts a wonderful patio and has WiFi Internet capabilities.
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Dayton Metro Library
215 E. Third Street
Your one-stop information source, the Dayton Metro Library serves the residents of Montgomery County and the State of Ohio with 22 branch locations. The main branch is centrally located on the corner of Third and St. Clair streets and offers a variety of services and programs.
Museums, Galleries & Studios
America’s Packard Museum
420 S. Ludlow Street
One of the top 10 auto museums in the country according to Auto Magazine, America’s Packard Museum is Dayton’s original Packard dealership. The building was constructed in 1917 and was in operation until 1939. Now, it is home for more than 25 cars, most of which are on loan or have been donated. The cars range in age to represent the beginning of the Packard era in 1910 to the end of the era with the 1956 Hawk.
45 S. St. Clair Street
The CADC is an exciting art gallery that also provides local artists/entrepreneurs with an economical working space. First Friday Open Studios are held from 5 to 10 p.m. on the first Friday of each month, featuring great art, live music, wine and light appetizers.
Color of Energy Gallery
16 Brown Street
The Color of Energy is a Mike Elsass gallery, featuring abstract works on rusted sheets of steel by Elsass. It also showcases works by other local and national artists.
The Dayton Art Institute
456 Belmonte Park N.
Did you know that Child magazine ranked the Dayton Art Institute as the third best family-friendly art museum in the country? Come explore and see why! The Dayton Art Institute is housed in one of Dayton’s best-known landmarks, a 1919 Italian Renaissance-inspired building overlooking downtown. The museum is a regular host to world-renowned traveling exhibitions, as well as a stellar permanent collection. Suggested admission to the museum is $8 for adults; $5 for seniors, students (18+) and groups; museum members and children/youth 17 and younger are free. Prices for special exhibitions and events vary.
Dayton International Peace Museum
208 W. Monument Avenue
The Dayton International Peace Museum aims to contribute to a local, national and international culture of peace through exhibits, activities and events that focus on nonviolent choices. Free admission, donations appreciated.
Dayton Society of Painters and Sculptors
48 High Street
DSPS is a nonprofit organization helping local artists to promote their work and improve their craft. Located in an historical home in St. Anne's Hill, DSPS' High Street Gallery serves as both an operating base and a gallery and events space.
Dayton Visual Arts Center
118 N. Jefferson Street
Come experience the works of local artists! The Dayton Visual Arts Center is a group of artists and art lovers who believe that a vital visual arts community is essential to the life of the community. From gallery talks and exhibit openings to professional development workshops, DVAC provides opportunities to meet others who share an interest in art and to learn about and support contemporary visual art.
Galleries at Sinclair Community College
444 W. Third Street
Both the Burnell R. Roberts Triangle Gallery and the ZONEVI Photography Gallery feature a variety of exhibits by both students and faculty throughout the year.
Gallery 510 Fine Art
510 E. Fifth Street
Gallery 510 features painting and photography by Loretta Puncer, as well as a wide variety of work by local artists, such as jewelry, scarves, wood pieces and more. The gallery also hosts Zentangle and other workshops.
Gallery at the Dayton Convention Center
22 E. Fifth Street, Second Floor
Works are displayed on the second floor of the Dayton Convention Center throughout the year.
Gallery at Fifth Third Center
1 S. Main Street
Located in the lobby of one of downtown’s most distinctive office towers, the Gallery at Fifth Third Centre features a variety of artwork by community artists throughout the year.
H. David Clay Studio
33 S. St. Clair Street
This charming pottery shop doubles as workspace for local potter David Kirchner. Stop by and see his latest creations!
K12 / TEJAS Gallery
510 E. Third Street
K12/TEJAS Gallery, a nonprofit arts organization located in the heart of downtown Dayton, inspires visual artists, art educators, students and art patrons of all ages to imagine, learn and create. K12/TEJAS Gallery offers studio art classes, city beautification and community outreach projects, and workshops, as well as rotating exhibitions. K12 offers programs ranging from pre-K art classes, Saturday and summer art classes, and children’s exhibitions. TEJAS Gallery, a 3,000-square-foot studio and exhibition space, offers programs specifically for teens and adults.
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222 E. Sixth Street
See the world through the striking photography of Dan Powers. Color and black-and-white prints fill this quaint gallery near the Oregon Arts District. Countries featured in Powers’ photography include Wales, Ireland, Italy, France, England, Russia, Spain, Scotland and Cuba, to name a few.
Performing Arts Groups
Bach Society of Dayton
126 N. Main Street #210
(937) 294-BACH (2224)
The Bach Society of Dayton performs throughout the year at various venues, collaborates with other area arts organizations, and helps prepare young singers by developing the appreciation, passion and joy of singing and hearing choral music.
126 N. Main Street #220
Cityfolk showcases a wide range of artists, reflecting the rich, cultural diversity of the Dayton community. Presentations include the Celtic Series, Jazz Showcases and much more. It also hosts the annual Cityfolk Festival, featuring live music and other performances on multiple stages.
140 N. Main Street
Dayton Ballet has become widely known for presenting American dance classics and premiering new works by emerging American choreographers.
138 N. Main Street
For more than 45 years, Dayton Opera Association productions have mirrored the full spectrum of the human experience. With each production, Dayton Opera strives to assemble the finest artistic personnel and highest quality of voices from esteemed U.S. and international opera houses.
Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra
109 N. Main Street #200
Founded in 1933, the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra has a distinguished place as one of the community's oldest and longest standing cultural institutions. It is a regional orchestra with approximately 80 contracted musicians.
Dayton Theatre Guild
430 Wayne Ave.
This community theater organization has been around since 1945, when it staged its first production at the Dayton Art Institute. The Dayton Theatre Guild has renovated the 20,000-square-foot former Dayton Gym Club on Wayne Avenue and is now staging its provocative and often cutting-edge shows in its new space.
Encore Theater Company
400 E. Fifth St., #A
ETC was founded in 1999 in an effort to provide a venue for the workshop, production and development of new American musical theater. ETC has been honored with numerous local awards, and has earned a place as a finalist for the Chicago STAGES Festival of New Works and a finalist for Curtain Call’s American Harmony Prize.
Human Race Theatre Company
126 N. Main Street #300
The Human Race is Dayton’s own professional theater company, producing an annual series of plays and musicals in The Loft Theatre. Human Race productions include classics, recent award-winning shows and new works. The Human Race has earned a national reputation for development of new musicals.
The Muse Machine
126 N. Main Street #310
(937) 222-MUSE (6873)
Cited as a model arts in education program in The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts publication Community Arts: Partnerships in Education, The Muse Machine continues to set the standard for the best in arts education.
Victoria Theatre Association
138 N. Main St.
In addition to a Broadway Series that presents outstanding musical theatre and plays, the Victoria Theatre Association offers a 'Young at Heart' family series, a summer film series, and enriched classroom experiences for students and teachers.
Zoot Theatre Company
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308 Washington St.
Dayton's only puppet and mask theater company, Zoot aims to stimulate the creative spirit through collaborative artistic expression. Currently the resident company for the Victoria Theatre Association, Zoot presents main stage and collaborative productions, and it provides educational programming.
Blair Hall Theatre at Sinclair Community College
444 W. Third Street, Building 2
Blair Hall Theatre is Sinclair Community College's premiere theater facility. The facility is an elegant 459-seat proscenium style auditorium that serves the entire community. Located in Building 2 along West Fourth Street, Blair Hall Theatre is the home of Sinclair's theater department productions and Music department concerts.
Caryl D. Philips TheatreScape
430 Wayne Avenue
The Caryl D. Philips TheatreScape is home to the Dayton Theatre Guild. The renovated space formerly occupied by the Dayton Gym Club provides an intimate setting with a distinctive thrust stage.
The Loft Theatre
126 N. Main Street
Offering intimate theater at its best, The Loft Theatre is home to the Human Race Theatre Company and is located in the Metropolitan Arts Building next to the Victoria Theatre. The performance area juts into the audience, allowing the seating to wrap around the front edge and giving each patron a different view of the action on stage. The Loft truly defines the word “intimate,” since the furthest seat in the house is only 20 feet from the actors.
Schuster Performing Arts Center
Second and Main streets
The Schuster Center is a world-class facility for the best in local, national and international performing artists. The Dayton Opera and the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra call the Schuster Center home, and it also showcases the latest Broadway blockbusters. Additionally, a variety of local performing arts treasures, such as the Dayton Ballet, also make use of the facility. The complex includes a 2,300-seat performance hall, a rehearsal hall/black box theater, a block-long Wintergarden with a six-story glass atrium, and an 18-story tower boasting Class A office space and upscale residential condominiums.
The Victoria Theatre
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138 N. Main Street
The historical Victoria Theatre has a reputation as one of the premiere theaters in the country. It is home to many Dayton arts organizations, including the Dayton Ballet and the Muse Machine. The Victoria also hosts touring performances ranging from Broadway musicals to award-winning plays.
Meeting, Banquet & Other Venues
Third & Main Streets
For more than 25 years, Courthouse Square has been the centerpiece of downtown Dayton. It still hosts lunchtime entertainment, rallies and other special events. Throughout the summer, vendors provide a quick, tasty lunch to downtown business people and visitors.
Dayton Convention Center
22 E. Fifth Street
With more than 100,000 square feet, the Dayton Convention Center offers an impressive selection of first-class, flexible event space. The facility features a renovated façade and houses 19 meeting rooms, two exhibit halls and a theater. It is ideal for events of every type and size, including conventions, trade shows, banquets, private parties, concerts, sporting events and more.
125 E. First Street
Memorial Hall was dedicated in 1910 as a memorial to Montgomery County’s war veterans. Dayton History manages the facility.
Old Court House
Third & Main Streets
This restored historic building served as the Montgomery County courthouse from 1850 to 1944. Throughout the years, many important events took place at the Old Court House, including a visit by Abraham Lincoln, recruiting drives for the Union Army during the Civil War, and war bond drives during World Wars I and II. Visitors to the Old Court House will see the building as the original builders intended and as early Daytonians saw it. Today, the Old Court House is used for a variety of community activities, including government ceremonies, meetings, banquets and receptions.
Taj Ma Garaj
300 S. Perry Street
The Taj is a banquet facility that offers up to 23,000 square feet of space that can accommodate up to 600 guests. Automotive elegance and eclectic sports cars are the theme for this showroom facility. Replete with state-of-the-art amenities that include audio/video possibilities and banquet/multi-meeting configurations are just the start. If you are looking for a unique venue for your extravaganza, you have to check out the Taj.