18 months after the storm, Scene75 ready for its comeback

The wait is almost over for the reopening of one of the region’s premier entertainment attractions following substantial damage during the 2019 Memorial Day tornadoes.

Scene75, located at 6196 Poe Ave. in Vandalia, plans to reopen in mid or late November after 18 months of extensive renovations and an expansion to house several big new rides and features.

“We are beyond excited to be able to reopen our doors to the Dayton community,” said Jonah Sandler, Chief Entertainment Officer of Scene75. “While planning our recovery after the tornadoes, we decided that it wasn’t enough to just rebuild; we wanted to make Scene75 Dayton bigger and better. Although it has been a long road to reopening, we can’t wait to open our doors to guests in November. I know that they will love the updated venue.”

An exact opening date has not been set, as construction continues.

“As soon as we can get these doors open, we’re going to open them up,” said Maggie McCartney, Scene75 director of art and design.

The team at Scene75 opened its doors to this news outlet on Monday for a behind-the-scenes tour.

Credit: Lisa Powell

Credit: Lisa Powell

The tornadoes caused significant damage to the entertainment center. Flooding occurred throughout the building, the roof needed to be completely torn down and rebuilt, and many attractions were completely demolished. This rebuild was already going to take months, but then the COVID-19 pandemic hit, causing delays.

The new Scene75 will include a mix of familiar favorites — go-karts, spin cars, inflatables, laser tag and arcade games — and splashy new attractions.

Credit: Lisa Powell

Credit: Lisa Powell

The now almost finished location has expanded its entertainment offerings with an additional 40,000 square feet of space, bringing the venue to a total of 164,000 square feet in size.

Some of the new additions include a 300-seat banquet center, an indoor spinning roller coaster, two-story drop tower, double-decker carousel, Next Generation Indoor Batting Cages and more. For food and drink offerings, there’s a renovated full-service restaurant, three bars and seven private party rooms for birthdays and events.

“After a lot of tears, we decided that, ‘OK, how do we turn this into a positive?’” McCartney said. “Instead of just reopening the site how it was and rebuilding the same, we decided to take the opportunity and really make the space bigger and better than ever before.”

Credit: Lisa Powell

Credit: Lisa Powell

Scene75 Dayton was the first in the chain of entertainment venues, opening in 2012. There are now five locations total across Ohio and Pennsylvania.

“We’re very proud of it,” McCartney said. “We love Dayton as our home.”

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