It is hard to keep up with Emmy Fabich and Katie Norris.
The super sassy soulmates and genuine Dayton doers who recently purchased a home in McPherson Town seem particularly busy in the summer.
>> MORE: Guide to McPherson Town
Emmy and Katie are quick, but we are crafty.
We caught up with our latest Daytonians of the Week.
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WHAT DO YOU DO?
Emmy: I make stuff happen. I get involved, I volunteer, and I show up. I also live downtown and work downtown for Bike Miami Valley, the region's only bicycling advocacy organization and I run the program education for Link: Dayton Bike Share. But I also play outside so you'll probably find me on one of my bikes, on a trail hiking, or slacklining in a park. (If you don't know what that is, look it up; it's fun.)
Katie: I work to help make Dayton the best possible place to live, work and play! And I do that by living, working and playing in Dayton. I'm involved with my neighborhood association (shout out to McPeeps!), community building, volunteering, playing outside on the bike trails, hiking trails and rivers, and I work for the City in the Department of Water, Division of Environmental Management working to protect and preserve Dayton's rivers!
WHERE ARE YOU FROM?
Emmy: I'm from Medina in northeast Ohio. I grew up in the country.
Katie: I grew up in the Cincinnati area, playing in the creek behind my parents’ house, looking for fossils!
WHY ARE YOU HERE?
Emmy: I'm here because I applied for a part-time job eight years ago with Five Rivers MetroParks after the economy tanked, and they hired me. I got experience in the outdoor industry in other states after college, but I was willing to move back. So I moved to "the big city" as my family called it. My old co-workers introduced me to the city as well as UpDayton, so I got involved and I made Dayton my home.
Katie: I'm here in Dayton because I purposely chose to move back to Dayton. While at UD for undergrad, I became connected to the Dayton community and paddled and fell in love with the rivers here. After moving around for graduate school and jobs after that, I missed Dayton and wanted to come back because Dayton has so much potential, and I felt I could really make a positive difference in Dayton.
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT LIFE IN DAYTON?
Emmy: Oh, too much to list, but I'll try. I love that the people are genuine and very friendly. I love that everything is so affordable and so close in proximity. I also love the energy that Dayton has going on. Some nights we'll be riding our bikes around, go to the fountains at RiverScape, stop at a local brewery and run into a bunch of our friends along the way, and we just fall in love with our city all over again.
Katie: So many things. I love that I can bike to work easily. I love that I can walk out my front door and be on the river or the bike trail or in a MetroPark. I love the community in my neighborhood, where folks sit on their front porches and share tools and borrow cups of sugar. I love living in the Midwest, where we may be too humble, but it also means that everyone is friendly and welcoming to all.
WHAT WOULD YOU DO ON A PERFECT DATE IN DAYTON?
Emmy: Grab Link bikes and ride to our favorite restaurant, Corner Kitchen, and eat yummy food. Next, we'd go up to Fifth Street Brewpub and enjoy a drink and some music on the patio. Then hit up a few video games at DK Effect in Huffman Historic District, my old stomping grounds. Then bop over to Belle of Dayton for new a bottle of that fantastic, award-winning gin. Finally, we'd pedal on back home and then hold hands just strolling through McPherson Town, our current neighborhood.
Katie: I knew Emmy would say go to Corner Kitchen. We love that place. I think her date sounds like a lot of fun! Wanna have a date night soon? I would add, seeing the fountains and the City at night as well.
WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO MAKE A HOME HERE?
Emmy: All of the reasons and things above plus I can still be close to my family and friends back where I grew up. Also, Dayton is a great place to get started after college. I've rented for years but we're taking the plunge and buying a house this year because the city means so much to me (us).
Katie: Well, as I mentioned before, Dayton is small enough for anyone to get involved, show up, and make real positive change in the community. But I also fell in love with being able to easily get away from the hustle and bustle, and paddle down the Mad River and see blue herons and turtles and be in nature, but then come around the bend in the river and see downtown.
WHAT SHOULD PEOPLE KNOW ABOUT DAYTON?
Emmy: People should know that Dayton is so lucky to have so many places to get outside, get active, explore and have local adventures right here. You don't need to spend tons of money or move to Denver: you could do a local bike touring trip on the nation's largest paved trail network, go whitewater kayaking on our national water trail system, or rent a bike at MetroParks Mountain Bike Area (MoMBA) and ride in the woods, or do a weekend backpacking trip on the Twin Valley Trail. The opportunities are endless! Dayton's got it going on. And I just love seeing the reaction on people's faces when you tell them all of the things that they an experience here.
Katie: Don't assume the perception you have of Dayton from five years ago holds true today. If you think there isn't something fun to do in Dayton for any age, on any day, then you're not looking hard enough. Also, Dayton isn't perfect, but if you see a challenge, ask yourself how can you work together with others to start addressing that challenge. We all have to take pride in where we live or work, and actively work to make it even better.
If you could change or bring one thing to Dayton, would would it be?
IF YOU COULD CHANGE OR BRING ONE THINGS TO DAYTON, WHAT WOULD IT BE?
Emmy: If I could change one thing about Dayton, well two things, and I mean this in the nicest way possible, it would be nurturing a culture of saying "yes" earlier to new ideas (don't hesitate, just do it) and inviting young professionals into the decision-making process. We are pretty old-school and traditional when it comes to the decision-makers, whether in the public or private sector, and if the same people keep talking about young professionals rather than with the ones that live and work here (probably right across the hall/cubicle), the same go-nowhere results will occur. This city has so many creative, energetic, enthusiastic young people, that we shouldn't let the few boring, pessimistic naysayers speak for us all. We are eager to get involved and collaborate, and I believe that is a resource the city could definitely capitalize on, but again, it's a culture shift.
Katie: An ice cream shop, late night diner and Indian restaurant downtown.
WHAT DO YOU THINK DAYTON WILL LOOK LIKE IN 10-15 YEARS?
Emmy: With the assumption that the previous question's response will be heard....hoverboards, flying cars, fiber optics, free preschool, bicycles everywhere, tourism booming, and happy, healthy people of all cultures and backgrounds. I mean why not dream big? Two guys with a bike shop did and it changed the world.
Katie: A thriving network of diverse neighborhoods, improved public schools, lots of people using alternative transportation (walking, biking, buses), a culture of sustainability, and more people enjoying all of the outdoor activities at our doorstep here!