Movie being filmed at Dayton diner: ‘It’s a dream come true’

First time filmmaker/screenwriter Greg Kirkpatrick Jr. of Rapid City, South Dakota is living his dream by making his first movie in Dayton, set at a popular local diner.

After hours, George’s Family Restaurant turns into the set of the new independent feature film “Another Day.” The movie is an “American Pie”-esque comedy set in 1999 with a dramatic love story hidden within, said Kirkpatrick.

“The script itself is really about redemption and emotion,” Kirkpatrick said. “The heart of the script is for anyone who has loved without reciprocation. I think whether you can handle the comedy of it or you can identify with the characters... most of us know what it’s like to love someone and not be loved back.”

Credit: Natalie Jones

Credit: Natalie Jones

The backstory of ‘Another Day’

Kirkpatrick wrote the first draft of the movie in 1999 while stationed at Ramstein Air Base in Germany where he was a radio and TV broadcaster. He had been engaged, but prior to moving to Germany the relationship ended.

“Instead of being in Germany with my wife, I ended up moving there completely alone,” Kirkpatrick said. “I worked in this big headquarters location where everyone was married and double my age, triple my rank.”

He recalled being lonely and needing something to do in his free time, so he took his love for movies and ended up writing his own screenplay. There were a few opportunities where he thought he might sell it, but it didn’t work out in the end.

In 2002, he separated from the Air Force and never wrote again.

Fast forward nearly 20 years later, he had a dream where he ended making the movie and received a standing ovation at the Sundance Film Festival. When he woke up, he said he immediately started rewriting.

How the movie ended up being filmed in Dayton

When he was in Germany, his supervisor Tracie Adams, supported and encouraged his film aspirations. They remained friends throughout the years and when he decided it was time to do something with his script she was the first person he called.

“I knew I always wanted to be involved if he ever did it because I was there when he first wrote it,” Adams said.

She and her husband are both retired from the Air Force and Wright-Patterson Air Force Base was her husband’s last tour.

Adams said when she got the call, she knew Dayton was the perfect place to film Kirkpatrick’s movie. She is now the producer, intimacy coordinator, location manager, and production manager of the film. She has spent the last six months finding a grocery store and diner in the Dayton area for their team to film.

“I love Dayton and it’s exciting for me to bring this business and publicity to them because we’re definitely the ‘Gem City,’” Adams said.

George’s Family Restaurant is the perfect match

Kirkpatrick and Adams recalled choosing George’s Family Restaurant not only due to the atmosphere, but because of the food and the flexibility of the owners.

“They needed a ‘90s-looking diner and this place hasn’t changed since who knows when so it fits the bill there and I think they liked the vibe because they came in to eat,” said Steve Socrates, who along with his fiancé, Samantha McFarland, took over ownership of the restaurant in August 2022.

The owners hope having the movie being filmed at the restaurant will turn out as a positive for the Northridge community. The name of the restaurant, the menus and the shirts are being used in “Another Day.”

In addition, McFarland and some of the restaurant’s staff play an acting role in the movie. They even recruited extras from the community.

Dayton extras

Jenifer Shyrigh and her husband, Jeff, of Germantown volunteered to be extras.

“I was just reading through the updates on Facebook and saw they were looking for extras. I jokingly said to him we have nothing to do,” Jenifer said. “We decided to come up.”

After three nights of filming, the couple said they enjoyed being part of the production. Jeff even had a small speaking role.

Credit: Natalie Jones

Credit: Natalie Jones

“We’ve really enjoyed working with the cast and the crew members; they’ve been really nice to us,” Jeff said.

Jenifer added: “Extremely professional. It’s amazing to watch the process. It makes you look at a movie differently.”

Dayton actor

The Shyrighs are not the only locals featured in the movie with a Dayton connection. Devon Dawson, who plays Joe in the movie, is originally from Hamilton, but moved to Miamisburg nearly two years ago.

He recalled auditioning for a role in the movie at the Dayton Mall in April with no prior acting experience.

“I feel like it was all kind of just right place, right time because I’ve always had an interest in acting,” Dawson said. “I always thought about doing it, but I never knew how serious I was going to take it.”

Kirkpatrick recalled Dawson’s audition and said, “He killed it. I hired him for a role he’s so perfect for.”

The more Kirkpatrick described the character and after Dawson met the cast, he said he fell in love with the film and generally believes it can be a good movie.

The 22 year old hopes to learn as much as possible through this new adventure.

“If I chose to do it again in the future, which I feel like I want to, then I’m going to be more well-equipped for that,” Dawson said.

Filming the movie

The crew films after hours at George’s Family Restaurant from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. McFarland typically stays part of the night and makes sure their team is fed.

“Dayton has been so accommodating for us and there’s such a big film industry here,” Kirkpatrick said.

He mentioned that 16 or 17 people of the 25 person team is from the Dayton area.

Credit: Natalie Jones

Credit: Natalie Jones

“It’s a dream come true,” Kirkpatrick said. “It’s everything I ever dreamed it could be. Every time I look around I just catch myself getting goosebumps every single day.”

“Watching his dreams come true is the best part for me,” McFarland said. “It’s just so much fun and I’m so happy I get to witness it and he picked our place to do it. It’s just so cool.”

Other places they plan to film include Hometown Marketplace in Waynesville and Woodland Cemetery and Arboretum in Dayton.

What’s next?

Once they finish filming, Kirkpatrick will head back to South Dakota where he will begin editing the film. His hope is to show his edit of “Another Day” in Rapid City, South Dakota in November. After he’s confident in the film, he said he will submit it to film festivals with hopes to get picked up by a studio and get a theatrical release.

When asked what really pushed him to follow his dream, he said it was his children.

“What really pushed me to do this... was the fact that I am a father of three,” Kirkpatrick said. “How can I as a father tell my children to never give up on their dreams and tell them it’s never too late... if I have an opportunity to accomplish mine and I don’t take it.”

Kirkpatrick is self financing the movie, but he said no matter what happens he was able to achieve his goal of making a movie and will never regret it.

How you can get involved

“Another Day” is seeking local owners of 1999 or older vehicles specifically a Cherokee, Explorer and minivan that they are willing to loan for use in the movie. Those that are interested in volunteering their car for filming, can email or call 609-864-5563. Those interested in being extras are still welcome to attend filming.

For more information about “Another Day,” visit or the movie’s Facebook page (@AnotherDayFlick).

George’s Family Restaurant is located at 5216 N. Dixie Drive. For more information about the restaurant, visit its Facebook page (@georgesfamilyrestaurantdayton).

Credit: Natalie Jones

Credit: Natalie Jones

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