Are you brand new to the Gem City… do you have guests coming to visit… or maybe you just want to play tourist in your own town. What ever the case, if you want to check out some of the local museums, here’s a list of the places you need to check out!
Where to begin… If you want to learn about Dayton’s history, this must be your first stop! There is so much to learn at their main campus, for both kids and adults. Certainly you’ll learn about the Wright brothers and their contributions, but also John H. and Frank Patterson, Charles Kettering, Col. Edward Deeds, and many other innovators. The park is open daily until 5 pm and cost is $10 for adults.
Carillon also runs several other historically significant sites around the Gem City; Hawthorn Hill, the Patterson Homestead, the Old Court House, Memorial Hall, and their newest exhibit at the Mounds in Miamisburg.
If you haven’t been (or even if you have), bring your littles here! Boonshoft is full of hands-on activities for kids; they can play all day. I personally liked their Discovery Zoo… but there are animals, so what’s not to like?! They’re constantly rotating and updating their exhibits and they offer daily programs. The Museum closes daily at 5 pm and tickets for adults is $14.50.
I have been coming here since I was a kid, and I still have not seen everything! Most recently, they opened a fourth hangar full of space related items. The museum covers all air flight from it’s earliest days to much more modern aircraft. You can walk through some of the larger craft and even sit in the pilot’s seat of others. The museum is open daily until 5 pm and admission is free (there are fees associated with the theater and flight simulators).
Run by the National Park Service, this Dayton museum sits where the original Wright Cycle Co. stood. It gives you an idea of what early life was like for the brothers, the neighborhood they grew up in, and how they came to toy with the idea of flight. They have a simulator for one of the earliest aircraft, and let me tell you, it’s not easy (even my Air Force husband couldn’t master it)! 😉 Just a few blocks away is the Paul Laurence Dunbar House, home of the American poet. Both sites are open every day until 5 pm and admission is free.
We’ve found this to be a great rainy day spot, though on sunny days you can enjoy walking in the Cloister. As much as I enjoy viewing the art, both the permanent collections as well as the new exhibits, I always enjoy the architecture of the building itself. While the institute was founded in 1919, its current home wasn’t completed until 1930. The Institute is open Wednesdays through Sundays until 5 pm and tickets are $8 for adults.
This museum operates out of an old Packard dealership in downtown Dayton and boasts “the largest collection of Packard automobiles and memorabilia anywhere in the world!” I have not yet been to this museum, but it has made the short list, so I hope to rectify that soon! Open daily noon to 5 pm and tickets are $6.
If you want to learn about those who lived here long before Dayton was settled, this is the place for you. An archaeological dig revealed this 800-year-old American Indian village, now museum. The museum is open Tuesday through Saturday until 5 pm (Saturdays only Nov – Mar), and tickets cost $7.
Did we miss anything?
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