12 foodie tours in Dayton this summer: What to expect

Credit: Submitted Photo

Credit: Submitted Photo

Chrissie Karuna, a 1995 Carroll High School graduate and mom of three who lives in Oakwood, is kicking off Dayton’s first and only walking foodie tour this summer.

JAM Foodie Tours will offer a walking, talking and eating experience on select Fridays and Saturdays in June and July starting at 3 p.m. at Sueño and ending between 5:30 and 6 p.m. at Tender Mercy. Tickets are $100.

“As someone who loves to eat and travel, I personally believe the food scene in Dayton is on par with any other city,” Karuna said.

Credit: Submitted Photo

Credit: Submitted Photo

During the experience, attendees will stop at six different establishments where they will eat and/or drink. By the end of the tour, they should feel like they’ve had a full meal. At each stop, someone from the establishment will talk about how the restaurant started and what they’re known for. Karuna will lead the group to each spot and talk along the way about the history of downtown. There also will be two other stops on the tour that are non-food related.

“The idea is that it’s communal,” Karuna said. “You’re going to get this great experience where you eat and walk with people you may or may not know.”

There will be a total of 12 tours this summer with no more than 12 people in each tour.

Karuna had the idea to start a foodie tour about eight years ago, but at that time her children were young and she didn’t have the time, space or energy to pursue JAM Foodie Tours. After her oldest left home to attend the Air Force Academy, she decided to give the foodie tours a try.

When she originally had the idea to do a foodie tour in Dayton, she had already attended several in other cities. Karuna said anytime she visits a new city she enjoys walking and seeing what’s there and then of course eating. A foodie tour is the perfect way to combine the things she loves together.

Karuna has a bachelor’s degree in theology and a master’s in humanity with emphasis in women, gender and sexuality. She has worked at Starbucks for almost 24 years and is a barista at the Oakwood coffee shop on Far Hills Avenue.

Eating is something everyone has to do, so why not make it a special, Karuna said.

“I think it’s going to be a fun experience for anyone that wants to try it and I hope at the end of the day it creates more of an audience for downtown,” she said.

In the future, Karuna hopes to add more tours to the schedule including a Thursday night tour that ends at Gather by Ghostlight to feature its jazz nights.

For more information or to purchase tickets, visit jamfoodie.tours.

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