Lost neon signs no longer glowing in Dayton

Downtown Dayton used to be full of neon signs. Here are some of the most iconic that are long gone.

While admiring the new look of the Neon Movies recently, it reminded me that I had run across film negatives of neon signs that I photographed twenty-five years ago in Dayton. What I discovered was that none of these signs still exist today. 

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Newon Movies new look, left, and part of the sign from 1993.
Photo: Dayton Daily News

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A large neon welcoming sign inside the Skywalk between the Dayton Transportation Center parking garage and the Crown Plaza Hotel has been replaced by back-lit style advertising signage. The white SKYWALK letters and the others in red gave the parking garage atrium a warm glow. 

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Neon signage was part of the City of Dayton Skywalk welcoming sign in the Transportation Center in 1993. TY GREENLEES / STAFF
Photo: Ty Greenlees

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The downtown Sears store at Monument and Patterson was my favorite neon sign. Something about the elegance of the letters and the simple design. Of course, the OPEN TONITE sign in red/orange overpowered the green SEARS ROEBUCK AND CO letters, but still, it looked cool. Sears was demolished in December of 2000 to make way for the Relizon building. 

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Neon signage from the old Sears Roebuck & Company store at Monument and Patterson in 1993. TY GREENLEES / STAFF
Photo: Ty Greenlees

A dry cleaner and tailor service now occupies The Party Depot in Fairborn on South Broadway Street, next to the now closed Gate 1A at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. 

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Neon Party Depot sign on South Broadway in Fairborn. TY GREENLEES / STAFF
Photo: Ty Greenlees

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The Diner on St. Clair truly fit the architecture of the building itself. After closing its doors in January of 1999, the location became several other restaurants and the sign came down. 

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The Diner on St. Claire neon sign in 1993 TY GREENLEES / STAFF
Photo: Ty Greenlees