Dayton Strong CityFest to keep the ‘love’ going this weekend

“It is not about politics. It is not about race. It is not about religion. It is about loving people,” organizer said.

Credit: Photos: submitted

Credit: Photos: submitted

Kristen Frank doesn't want Dayton to forget the love she witnessed following the Oregon District mass shooting and Memorial Day tornadoes.

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“Love breaks down the wall that people have created,” the guest experience director of Medway Church in New Carlisle said. “That’s the only way we go forward. The community has come together. We cannot stop that.”

Frank is an organizer of DaytonStrong CityFest, a benefit in support of those affected by both the Aug. 4 mass shooting and 15 tornadoes. The event is set for 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 22 at Levitt Pavilion in Dave Hall Plaza, 134 S. Main St.

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The free, family-friendly event includes performances by the Funk Lab Dance Center and a list of  musical acts that includes Nashville-based Hasting & Co.; Chris Jobe,a pop singer and songwriter who appeared on "Songland);" Alexis Gomez, a past contestant on "American Idol" and The American Landscape. 

Jobe and Gomez are Centerville High School graduates.


The American Landscape and Hasting & Co have connections to the Springfield area.

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DJ Mo Dingo will spin music and Medway Church Band will close the evening.

Mike Turner will be there to offer hugs through his #LoganHugs campaign. Turner's son Logan was one of nine people killed in the Oregon District mass shooting.

“I wanted to do something because I love this community, and I think it is important for us to share love,” Frank said. “It is not about politics. It is not about race. It not about religion. It about about loving people.”

Frank said that attendees will be invited to help create artwork that will be broken up and shared with Oregon District businesses.

She said about 150 people helped organized the event in response to the 15 tornadoes and mass shooting.

Dayton Strong T-shirts in kid sizes up to 5XL will be sold for $15 each.

Proceeds will be split between The Dayton Foundation funds established for victims of the mass shooting and the tornadoes. 

Texts for a one-time donation to the funds will also be encouraged.

“It is a way we can continue the love and let Dayton know we have their back,” Frank said.

Food trucks include Greek Street Food Truck, The Painted Pepper and Momma'z Boyz will be on site.

A list of vendors will include Poppin' Off popcorn, Jenny G's Cupcakes & Treats and Purely Sweet Bakery

The businesses plan donate a portion of proceeds to the funds.

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There will be face painting, balloon animals, yard games, a photo booth and  an opportunity to be photographed with Princess Elsa, Batman, Spiderman and other superheroes.

Local artist Maggie Reckers Art will create a piece on site.

A post about BreakThroughtheTape, a piece Reckers created in the wake of the mass shooting, has been shared thousands of times on Facebook.

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