Soak up the first days of summer with these 6 fun-in-the-sun activities

The longest day of the year and the official start to the summer season is here. It’s a great opportunity to make a splash with some fun in the sun.

With the summer solstice comes the desire to soak up every moment of daylight in the weeks to come. The Dayton area has an endless calendar of activities to fill up your summer vacation and help make the best of the hot, sunny days.

Check out six ways to take advantage of the summer this season in the Dayton area.

💦Swim and Splash Around

The obvious choice for cooling off and relaxing this summer season is taking a dip in one of the dozens of community pools and private swim clubs in the Dayton area.

Another way to cool off the kids of a hot summer day — while parents stay dry and save money — is the numerous splash pad parks located throughout the area. Kacie Jane Park and Splash Pad in Springboro, Activity Center Park in Centerville, J.F. Kennedy Park in Kettering, Five Oaks Park and several others feature interactive fountains and spray-ground areas.

🎊Explore Dayton Summer Festivals

Credit: Tom Gilliam

Credit: Tom Gilliam

The Dayton area has a festival for just about any taste, with festivities celebrating dozens of individual foods, music genres, cultures and hobbies. Any given weekend in Dayton can be made complete with a lineup of craft and food vendors, live music and carnival games.

The Miami Valley Pickle Fest - Just Dill With It!, the Carillon Park Rail Festival, multiple Pride festivals, the Wright Dunbar block party and more will all go on the first official weekend of summer.

🎸Enjoy a Summer Concert

Credit: Tom Gilliam

Credit: Tom Gilliam

While singing along to your favorite artist can be a year-round experience, summer concerts outside change the game. The Dayton area is home to several concert venues that provide open-air access to fan-favorite performances.

Levitt Pavilion, the Rose Music Center at The Heights, Fraze Pavilion and several local park amphitheaters have long summer lineups of artists and bands spanning genres, decades and notorieties. Levitt Pavilion, offering free shows this summer in downtown Dayton, is home to Dayton’s Reggaetón, Blues and Funk festivals, the Rose will host bands including The Doobie Brothers, Train and Straight No Chaser, and Kettering’s Fraze Pavilion will bring Nelly, Peppa Pig’s Adventure and Donny Osmond to town.

Coming up, Peter Frampton will take stage at the Rose Wednesday, June 21, Scythian will be at Levitt Pavilion on Thursday, June 22 and The Menus will play Fraze Pavilion Friday, June 23.

⚾Spend Evenings at the Ballpark

Credit: Tom Gilliam

Credit: Tom Gilliam

Baseball is the nation’s favorite pastime, and in Dayton, a Dragons game can be a well-spent night out for the whole family. Lawn seat tickets are just $10 a piece to see the minor league team, and puts baseball fans in the perfect spot to catch a home run ball hit to right field. The sunset view from the lawn — or anywhere in the ballpark — can be a spectacle all on its own.

Upcoming, the Dayton Dragons will play four more games against the Lake County Captains at home Wednesday, June 21 through Sunday, June 25. Tickets and more information can be found by visiting

🍅Shop Local with Farmers Markets

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

The warm months bring out the opportunity to nab fresh produce while shopping in your own community. Over 20 local farmers markets in the Dayton area offer much more than in-season fruits and vegetables. From jams, jellies and honeys to craft items and home décor, the Miami Valley farmers markets are up and running weekly to sell local goods.

The Miamisburg Farmers Market, Fairborn Farmers Market and Trotwood Community Farmers Market run every Wednesday, while the Lebanon Farmers Market and Piqua Community Farmers Market take place every Thursday. Over a dozen area markets run on the weekend.

🏳‍🌈Celebrate Pride Month

Credit: Bill Lackey

Credit: Bill Lackey

June kicks off summer, but it also serves as Pride month. The Miami Valley has been celebrating the LGBTQ+ community all month long with a series of parades, marches, 5K runs, street festivals, live performers and more.

As the month draws to a close, a few more celebrations offer a last-chance opportunity to take part in this year’s Pride festivities. Middletown hosts its Pride festival Friday, June 23 and Yellow Springs will have its YS Pride Festival on Saturday, June 24. Springfield Pride all weekend long through June 25 will involve a silent disco block party, a festival and a drag brunch.

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