The Dayton Art Institute’s annual Oktoberfest took place on Sept. 21-23 on the grounds of the museum, located at 456 Belmonte Park N. in Dayton. The festival is one of the Dayton-area’s biggest festivals and it’s been going on since 1972. TOM GILLIAM / STAFF PHOTO
Photo: Tom Gilliam
Photo: Tom Gilliam

BEST OF DAYTON: 3 of the most amazing local festivals

Festival season in Dayton officially kicks off this weekend.

>> Festival season is here! Mark your calendars for these spring festivals

What better time than now to celebrate some of Dayton’s best festivals?

We asked Daytonians to vote for their favorite local festival in’s Best of 2018 contest.

>> Complete list of Best of Dayton winners

The competition was fierce in this category, with so many amazing festivals from spring to fall to love. But these were the three that rose to the top in people’s hearts (and bellies):

WINNER: Dayton Art Institute Oktoberfest

The Dayton region has plenty of Oktoberfest celebrations. But the people of Dayton voted the Dayton Art Institute’s three-day celebration of Oktoberfest the top. It’s been a tradition for more than 70 years. Oktoberfest takes place on the grounds of the museum and is the museum's largest annual fundraiser. Beer, brats, food trucks, live music, arts and crafts combine for one of Dayton’s biggest parties of the year. Highlights include the two-day festival on Saturday and Sunday, a Lederhosen lunch kickoff celebration on Friday and an exclusive Friday night ticketed preview party.

>> PHOTOS: Dayton Art Institute Oktoberfest 2018

Want to go?

456 Belmonte Park N., Dayton | Website | Facebook

This year’s festival dates: Sept. 27-29, 2019

SECOND PLACE: Dayton Celtic Festival

Dayton Celtic Fest was held on July 27-29, 2018 in downtown Dayton. Celtic music and dance, beer and food are the stars of one of Dayton's signature festivals of summer. TOM GILLIAM / CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHER
Photo: Tom Gilliam

The incredible Celtic music is the big draw (in addition to the beer), but this signature Dayton summer festival has something for everyone. Presented by United Irish of Dayton at RiverScape MetroPark, The free festival features workshops, vendors, food, beer, children’s activities, a Celtic breakfast and a Gaelic Mass.

>> PHOTOS: Dayton Celtic Festival 2018

Want to go?

237 E. Monument Ave., Dayton | Website | Facebook

This year’s festival dates: July 26-28, 2019

THIRD PLACE: Yellow Springs Street Fair

Downtown Yellow Springs is receiving some last-minute upgrades meant to be in place before the busy summer tourist season. Crowds shown here in the 2016 Yellow Springs Street Fair and Music & Beer Festival filled downtown Yellow Springs. CONTRIBUTED
Photo: Staff Writer

One of the best things about this festival, other than the fact it’s in the charming village of Yellow Springs, is that you get to experience it twice a year. The Street Fair takes place in summer and fall and features music, belly dancing, food, beer and vendors who sell handmade wares and crafts. You never know who or what you might see.

>> PHOTOS: Yellow Springs Street Fair summer 2018

Want to go?

Downtown Yellow Springs | Website | Facebook

This year’s festival dates: June 8 and Oct. 12, 2019