Where to watch First Four games

The First Four places you should go to eat, drink, shop, play and watch the games

March Madness is in full swing and Dayton is right at the center of it this week as a host of first-round games in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament.

For those visiting Dayton this week, here are some recommendations on some of the first places you should try.

Here are the First Four places you should visit to grab a bite to eat, to grab a drink before or after the game, to watch the games if you don’t have tickets or to shop or explore for fun.


These destinations are all conveniently located close to the University of Dayton campus and arena and offer something unique.

Dewey's Killer Veggie pizza. CONTRIBUTED/ERIC WAGNER
Photo: Eric Wagner

1. Dewey’s Pizza

131 Jasper St., Dayton | Website | Facebook | Call 937-223-0000

Dewey's menu features loads of creative specialty pies, seasonal salads and some of the finest craft beers from all over Ohio. Try Socrates Revenge or the Edgar Allen Poe.

🏆 Best of Dayton 2018 finalist: Best Pizza Restaurant, third place

Jimmie's Ladder 11 in Dayton will celebrate 7 years with dinner and drink specials, special events and more. CONTRIBUTED

2. Jimmie’s Ladder 11

936 Brown St, Dayton | Website| Facebook | Call 937-222-7072 

Stop by this renovated 1892 firehouse for some of the best sandwiches, appetizers and beer lists in town. Jimmie’s is famous for its laid-back vibe and its creative appetizers, including its Blind Dates and Paisano Chips.

🏆 Best of Dayton 2018 finalist: Best appetizer, third place

Zombie Dogz on Brown Street in Dayton.
Photo: Photo by Amelia Robinson

3. Zombie Dogz 

1200 Brown St #150, Dayton, OH 45409 | WebsiteFacebook | Call 937-951-2942

This Dayton gem started out as a food truck with a cult-like following and now also operates a restaurant near UD. Best known for its gourmet hot dogs, Zombie Dogz also features fresh, handcrafted side dishes made with many locally-sourced ingredients. Try the Calling in Dead hot dog topped with housemade truffle mac and cheese, voted best food truck dish in Dayton in 2018. You won’t be sorry.

🏆 Best of Dayton 2018 winner: Best food truckbest food truck dishbest mac and cheese, first place 

Left to right: chicken fajita taco, BBQ brisket taco, green street taco and baja shrimp taco
Photo: Alex Perry

4. Rusty Taco

1822 Brown St., Dayton | Website | Facebook | Call 937-938-7384

If you’re looking for a quick bite, Rusty Taco offers freshly made street-style tacos from the traditional to the unexpected. If you have a few minutes to sit and relax, enjoy those tacos with a beer or margarita.


Co-owner Joseph Head with the Summer Cocktail " Remember the Maine" made with Rye Whiskey, Cherry Liquer, Bitters, Bulliet Rye and Sweet Vermouth at the Century Bar, 10 S Jefferson St, Dayton. JIM WITMER/STAFF

1. Century Bar 

10 S. Jefferson St, Dayton | WebsiteFacebook | Call 937-223-3382 

A short drive from the UD campus to downtown, this historic bar features over 200 common and rare bottles of bourbon and whiskey. Its reputation as a go-to bourbon bar extends far beyond Dayton. The Century has been named one of America’s 100 Best Bourbon Bars by The Bourbon Review’s website.

🏆Best of Dayton winner: Best Cocktails, first place

Warped Wing Brewing Company tapped the 10 TON Irish Cream Stout, a special variation of their Oatmeal Stout ahead of St. Patrick's Day at their brewery in downtown Dayton on Saturday, March 9. TOM GILLIAM / CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHER
Photo: Tom Gilliam

2. Warped Wing

26 Wyandot St., Dayton | 937-222-7003 | WebsiteFacebook

Dayton has tons of amazing options when it comes to local beer. But if you can only choose one, go with the people’s choice, and that’s Warped Wing. Just a short drive from the UD campus, the downtown Dayton brewery place first in the 2018 Best of Dayton contest for “Best Local Brewery” and “Best Locally Made Beer” categories, Warped Wing piled on by capturing the most online votes for “Best Craft Beer Selection.” The brewery that’s been around for five years now offers only its own beers at its tap room.

🏆Best of Dayton winner: Best Local Brewery, Best Locally Made Beer for Trotwood Lager, Best Craft Beer Selection

An Elsa's Bad Juan margarita. Staff file photo by Jim Noelker.

3. Elsa’s 

There are 5 area Elsa’s locations: 1216 E. Stroop Rd.; 6318 Far Hills Ave., 6204 A Wilmington Ave., 3618 Linden Ave., and 1227 Wilmington Ave. Website  |  Facebook

Elsa’s is known for its classic margarita, The Bad Juan. The potent drink has been served here since 1979 and packs a punch. The drink is so tasty it often ranks high in Best of Dayton contests including taking top prize this year.

The Bad Juan is also sold in supermarkets, local retailers and bars or restaurants in Dayton, Cincinnati, Columbus and Toledo.

🏆 Best of Dayton winner: Best Margarita 

Carillon Brewing Company is part working brewery, part museum. It re-creates the experience of a visitor to a mid-19th-century Dayton brewery, when the practice flourished here. Carillon's Coriander Ale, like all of its brews, is a re-creation of a historical recipe that came from an 1831 Cincinnati commercial brewing book. PHOTO CONTRIBUTED BY JIM WITMER
Photo: Jim Witmer, Contributing Photographer

4. Carillon Brewing Company

1000 Carillon Blvd. Dayton  | (937) 910-0722  |Website  | Facebook

Just across the river from UD Arena is Carillon Brewing Company, which celebrates Dayton’s brewing history. Try an Ale popular in the 1850s  or a Sour Porter from 1862 that mixes light and dark malts. Visitors can watch the historic brewing process on site.  The brewery also has a two vintage wines made with historical wine grape varieties. The outdoor beer garden is now open.

>>Carillon Brewing Co. adds new dimension to Dayton’s brewing renaissance


If you don’t have tickets ...

1. Milano's Pizza, Subs & Taps 

1834 Brown St., Dayton | WebsiteFacebook | Call 937-222-7072 

Rooted deep in Flyer Country, and surrounded with TVs on every nook and cranny, Milano's on Brown Street is a basketball fan's paradise. Their cheesesteak on house-baked bread and their pizzas are a must-try.

2. Flanagan's Pub 

101 E. Stewart St, Dayton | Facebook | Call 937-228-5776 

This family-owned bar near UD offers classic pub fare and various brew options. The Irish theme will keep you in the St. Patrick’s Day mood long past the holiday. 


3. Buffalo Wild Wings 

1900 Brown St, Dayton | Website | Call 937-222-9464 

Located mere minutes from UD Arena, B-Dubs is a prime location for fans looking to enjoy a quintessential sports bar atmosphere. 

A great place to keep your eye on the game is at Milano's Pizza, Subs and Taps, 1820 Brown St. STAFF

4. Bunkers Bar and Grill 

893 E. National Rd, Vandalia | Website | Call 937-890-8899

With 42 beers on tap, daily happy hour specials and chef-inspired dishes make this beloved eatery a Dayton-favorite for brews, wings, breakfast and more. 


Dayton is rich in culture — and these places prove it. If you have some time to take in some tourist attractions, here are four destinations 

The Dayton Art Institute will get $750,000 in the new state budget for historic stair and hillside preservation.

1. Dayton Art Institute

456 Belmonte Park N, Dayton | Website | Facebook | Call 937-223-4278

A gem of the Gem City for 100 years, the Dayton Art Institute will entertain all levels of art enthusiasts with its permanent collection, Experiencenter for kids and its current exhibition on American art. Tickets are quite affordable: $8/adult, $5/military, group or seniors and free for college students with valid ID.

🏆Best of Dayton 2018 winner: Best Art Gallery | Best of Dayton 2018 finalist Best Museum and Best Landmark (second place)

>> Dayton Art Institute a big winner in Best of Dayton in its biggest year

2. Carillon Historical Park

1000 Carillon Blvd., Dayton | WebsiteFacebook

Carillon has it all. It is a museum, park, brewery and more, all in one. This landmark is the home of a Wright Brothers Flyer, the Deeds Carillon — the beautiful Dayton bell tower, a carousel and its newest attraction, the Brethren Tower, which offers a breathtaking view.

🏆Best of Dayton 2018 winner: Best Park

Underwater themed nine hole mini golf course. Contributed Photo by Alexis Larsen
Photo: HANDOUT/Alexis Larsen

3. Scene 75

6196 Poe Ave, Dayton | Website | Facebook | Call 937-619-3200

With wall-to-wall video games, go-karts, laser tag, food, drinks and classic arcade games all under one roof, this spot has everything you need for a good time.

🏆Best of Dayton 2018 winner: Best Arcade/Gaming

Tour guides at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force are now being called “docents” to reflect a national trend. CONTRIBUTED
Photo: Staff Writer

4. National Museum of the U.S. Air Force

1100 Spaatz St, Wright Patterson Air Force Base | Website | Facebook | Call 937-255-3286

Daytonians take great pride in their city's history, especially when it comes to the history of flight. At the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, the oldest and largest military aviation museum in the world, you'll see first-hand why Dayton is known as the "Birthplace of Aviation."

🏆Best of Dayton 2018 winner: Best Museum and Best Dayton Landmark


When you're getting ready for family get-togethers and parties, stop in at 2nd Street Market for local produce, baked goods, spices, and other culinary delights. There are also many artisans and vendors to find gifts for everyone on your list. CONTRIBUTED

1. 2nd Street Market 

600 E. 2nd St, Dayton | WebsiteFacebook | Call 937-228-2088

This hub of local produce, artisan breads, meats, jams, skincare, desserts and more is a must-visit for anyone looking to indulge in the wonders of Dayton-owned and operated businesses. 

🏆Best of Dayton 2018 winner: Best Place for Unique Gifts

Heart Mercantile on 5th St. in the Oregon District is a great one-stop-shop for gifts. PHOTO / ALEXIS LARSEN

2. Heart Mercantile

438 E. Fifth St., Dayton | Website | (937) 250-6020 | Hours: M-Sat 10 a.m. – 9 p.m., Sun 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. 

If you’re looking for the perfect Dayton souvenir (with a little sass), Heart Mercantile is a must-visit.

Heart has a little bit of everything: mugs, shirts, candles, soap, cards, etc. — all with delightfully snarky sayings, hilarious puns, or just bursting with Dayton pride.

🏆Best of Dayton 2018 finalist: Best Dayton-centric gift, third place

If you have a UD fan on your list, you can't miss Flyer Spirit. This place is stocked with apparel, accessories, gifts, and more - all emblazoned with the UD logo and perfect for boasting your UD pride to the world.

3. Flyer Spirit

1200 Brown St #145, Dayton | shop.udayton.edu/flyer-spirit | (937) 229-3454 | Hours: Sun-W 11 a.m. - 6 p.m., R-Sat 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.

In Flyer country, this has to be on your list of places to shop. This place is stocked with apparel, accessories, gifts, and more — all emblazoned with the UD logo and perfect for boasting your UD pride to the world.  

The Greene Town Center in Beavercreek is hosting a job fair where 26 stores and restaurants are looking for employees. TY GREENLEES / STAFF
Photo: Staff Writer

4. The Greene

4452 Buckeye Lane, Beavercreek | WebsiteFacebook 

Looking for a bigger shopping experience? Hop on Route 35 to 675 South and one exit south you will find The Greene, a shopping, dining and entertainment complex. You will find a little something for everyone here. The Cheesecake Factory, The Pub, Bar Louie, a movie theater, Von Maur department store, Ulta, Nordstrom Rack, Books & Co. and more.