Rediscover downtown Dayton with walking tours

The Outdoor Public Art walk offers many picture-perfect locations - Debbie Juniewicz
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The Outdoor Public Art walk offers many picture-perfect locations - Debbie Juniewicz

Stunning sculptures and magnificent murals, a steamy cappuccino or an ice-cold ale; all of this and more can be found on the Downtown Dayton Partnership’s new self-guided walking tours.

Explore Dayton your way with the Outdoor Public Art, Espresso & Treats and Downtown Brewery & Distillery walks.

“We created these to get people moving and exploring our downtown,” said Sandy Gudorf, president of the Downtown Dayton Partnership. “There have been so many changes downtown in recent years, we want to encourage people to get outdoors and rediscover Dayton.”

The Espresso & Treats walk offers numerous locations for refreshment and relaxation. CONTRIBUTED/DEBBIE JUNIEWICZ
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The Espresso & Treats walk offers numerous locations for refreshment and relaxation. CONTRIBUTED/DEBBIE JUNIEWICZ

The tours utilize Roamli, a free app that can be installed on your phone. Just select the “challenge track” of your choosing and off you go. The app can help you find the best route and keep track of your progress.

“You get exercise and have some fun destinations to visit,” Gudorf said. “And, because it’s self-guided, you can do it at your own pace.”

Outdoor Public Art

From murals to statues and even larger-than-life pop-top cans, the art tour has 60 unique stops. RiverScape MetroPark is a great starting point with the River Run mural, Hydraulic Jump Fountain and Happy Days bronze sculpture. Abraham Lincoln, William McKinley and Churchill are must-sees as well as a giant troll and a sleeping giant as well as the many striking murals that dot the Oregon District.

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“All of our murals are done by local artists, so it showcases the incredible talent we have here,” Gudorf said. “And there are lots of opportunities for selfies.”

To access the public art tour, use code DAYTONART on Roamli.

Espresso & Treats

Cappuccinos and cupcakes, lattes and, even, lunch – the Espresso & Treats walking tour has it all. From longtime downtown mainstays like Boston Stoker to the new Startup Grounds in the Arcade, you can snack and sip your way to 12 unique Dayton destinations.

It’s not all about the caffeine as the tour includes the eclectic 2nd Street Market as well as the tasty Twist Cupcakery.

“Downtown is a community of small businesses and COVID has been tough on them, so this is a great way to explore and support these businesses,” Gudorf said.

To access the tour, use code DAYTONCAFE on Roamli.

Downtown Brewery & Distillery walking tour includes seven unique locations. CONTRIBUTED/DEBBIE JUNIEWICZ
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Downtown Brewery & Distillery walking tour includes seven unique locations. CONTRIBUTED/DEBBIE JUNIEWICZ

Downtown Brewery & Distillery

If cocktails and cold beer are more your speed, this is the tour for you.

The Van Buren Room at Belle of Dayton Distillery is the ideal place for sipping spirits that have won national and international acclaim while the Dayton Beer Company’s rooftop patio is a perfect spot for a casual night with friends. Or venture to the Oregon District and “pick your poison,” as the sign says, at the Toxic Brew Company.

There are seven unique sites on the Brewery & Distillery tour.

To access the tour, use code DAYTONBEER on Roamli.

Contact this contributing writer at djuniewicz@gmail.com.

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