Special shopping and dining options for Downtown Dayton’s First Friday


DAYTON — The holiday season is officially underway, and to celebrate the most wonderful time of year, Dayton is hosting its First Friday festivities from 5 to 10 p.m. on Friday, Dec.1.

Downtown businesses will offer special events and live entertainment to help keep the holiday cheer going strong all month.

Shoppers can check every name off their list by supporting one of downtown’s many independently owned businesses and shopping small this holiday season. Downtown Dayton is home to unique shops that offer the perfect gift. The Downtown Dayton Holiday Gift Guide contains some of the best ideas for dining, gifts, experiences, and more. Downtown Dollars is an e-gift card that can be redeemed at nearly 80 downtown businesses. To purchase or learn more, go to www.downtowndayton.org/dollars.

Visitors can observe the decorations adorning the downtown, businesses, and vote for their favorite window display in the Whimsical Windows contest. Participants should keep an eye out for sneaky elves hiding in windows and could win Downtown Dollars in the Elf Hunt. To learn more about both events, the Downtown Jingle Lights, Rike’s holiday windows, and more Dayton Holiday Festival fun at daytonholidayfestival.org.

Check out the individual First Friday listings below, and remember the most up-to-date event listings can be found in the online calendar published on the Downtown Dayton Partnership’s website. Subscribing to the weekly e-vents email newsletter also keeps one up to speed. For more information about First Friday or to find business addresses, parking, upcoming activities, and more, visit the DDP website at DowntownDayton.org. Invite friends and family to partake in First Friday fun! “Like” and share the First Friday Facebook page.

Art, dance, music, and film:

• Blind Bob’s, located at 430 E. Fifth St., will host rock bands Maharaja, Rattlesnake Venom Trip, Takacs, Gromulous! Doors at 8 p.m., 21+ with $10 cover.

• The Contemporary Dayton, located at 25 W. Fourth St., features “Shon Walters: The Hole Belly” now on display. At the heart of the exhibition is an ambitious series of tableaus that push visitors to kneel, jostle, and duck, forcing them to relate to the heft and power–as well as the graceful intricacy–of the forms.

• Dayton Art Institute, located at 456 Belmonte Park North, displays the latest special exhibitions, “Around Tokyo: Hiroshige II’s Views of Famous Places in Edo,” “Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec: The Birth of Modern Paris,” and “You Don’t Know Me: Works by Unknown Photographers.” Open until 5 p.m. on Friday.

Dayton Society of Artists (DSA), at 48 High St., hosts its “Small but Mighty Gift and Fine Art Exhibition.” All work is 12 by 12 inches or smaller and includes various mediums and styles. DSA will also have a gift shop full of original and handmade goods such as ornaments, cards, jewelry, and more!

• Dublin Pub, located at 300 Wayne Ave., features Happy Hour from 3 to 6 p.m. and live music by Dulahan starting at 9 p.m. For more information, call 937-224-7822.

The Edward A. Dixon Gallery at 222 N. St. Clair St. has extended hours to be part of the First Friday Art Hop. See artwork from the Dayton area, around the U.S., and the world. Light refreshments will be provided.

• Front Street, 1001 E. Second St.: Explore art studios, galleries, boutiques, and workshops across our campus! With more than three industrial-sized buildings to explore, guests will want to get here early. Food trucks and our newest community member, Kool Beanz Cafe will provide dinner options. Parking and attendance are free. Don’t forget your holiday shopping list and give the gift from the heart.

The Neon movie theater, at 130 E. Fifth St., features “Dream Scenario” on First Friday. Customers can enjoy beer and cocktail specials during First Friday, and purchase a DORA drink at the Neon to walk around downtown Dayton’s Designated Outdoor Refreshment Area before or after the show. See the full schedule online: www.neonmovies.com

Dining and drinks:

• Jimmy John’s, at 220 N. Main St.: Stop in to try the new Peppermint Chocolate Cookie! Catering is now available for holiday parties! Call 937-951-2001 to order now.

Lily’s Dayton, 329 E. Fifth St.: Lily’s will serve its special Prime Rib Week and full dinner menu! Check out the bonus buy-on gift cards – $10 each for each $50 purchased!

• Local Cantina, 503 E. First St: Happy Hour is from 3 to 6 p.m. with $5 Mustache Rides and Margaritas and $2 off dips. Now taking reservations and catering orders.

• Lock 27, 329 E. First St.: Happy Hour is back from 4 to 6 p.m. Enjoy $2 off flagship, core, and seasonal Lock 27 Brewing drafts.

• Moeller Brew Barn, 416 E. First St. will serve $5 pints for Happy Hour from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

• Mudlick Tap House, at 135 E. Second St., will feature Happiness Hours from 4 to 6 p.m. with $2 off draft beers and $2 off shareables in addition to half-priced bottles of wine, $8 Old Fashions, and $9 Manhattans. For information call 937-895-4066.

• The Oregon Express, at 336 E. Fifth St., features Happy Hour deals from 5 to 8 p.m. Stop in for some of the best pizza in Dayton. Dine-in, carryout, and curbside pickup are available. For more information call 937-223-9205.

• Salar Restaurant and Lounge, 400 E. Fifth St., Kick off your First Friday with happy hour at Salar from 4-6 p.m. with cocktail specials, $5 house wine pours, $1 off of all beers, and bar bites specials. Enjoy dinner, too, available for dine in or carryout. For more information call 937-203-3999.

• Table 33, located at 130 W. Second St.: features Friday Wine Night at with $3.33 wine pairings available with any entree.

• Third Perk Coffeehouse and Wine Bar, at 146 E. Third St.: Enjoy an evening of music and delicious food from 7 to 11 p.m.

• Troll Pub Dayton, 216 Wayne Ave.: Every Friday at the Troll Pub is part of W.T.F Happy Hours: Wednesday, Thursday & Friday from 4 to 7 p.m. featuring half Priced Pints and appetizers in addition to $4 Fireball Shots.

• The Trolley Stop, at 530 E. Fifth St., features a Half-off Happy Hour every day from 3 to 7 p.m. with $3 wells and half-off select appetizers. For more information, call 937-461-1101.

• Two Social, at 123 E. Third St., has a new menu launch every first Friday. Try all 6 drinks on the new menu and get a free shirt! Customers have all month to collect all 6 drinks on the punch card.

Special shopping details and other activities:

• After5, at 111 E. Third St.: Mention First Friday at checkout to take 20 percent off the total purchase.

• Choice Juice Boxx, at 31 S. St. Clair St.: Spend $50 at Varsity House to receive 10 percent off the Choice Juice Boxx purchase.

• The Contemporary Dayton, at 25 W. Fourth St.: Shop the CoSHOP for a curated collection of over 500 holiday and winter-themed fine art and craft from select community-driven artists. Open 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

• Club Evolution, located at 130 N. Patterson Blvd.: Audience applause chooses the winner of a karaoke contest and $75! No cover. Karaoke starts at 8:30 p.m. with the contest starting at 10:30 p.m.

• Golden Hour Piercing, at 411 E. Fifth St.: Golden Hour’s best sale of the year, with Buy one get one on $100 gift cards all December.

• International Peace Museum, 10 N. Ludlow St.: Kick off the holiday season with live music, hors-d’oeuvres, wine, beer, mocktails, and more. There is a $25 admission at the door.

• Omega Music, at 318 E. Fifth St.: New release day! Explore the new releases on vinyl, CDs, and more. Open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

• RiverScape MetroPark at 237 E. Monument Ave.: Sheltered under the covered pavilion, the MetroParks Ice Rink sets the scene as a perfect winter wonderland in downtown Dayton. While the rink is open, guests can enjoy delicious treats from the concession area, including a cup of hot chocolate. Visit metroparks.org/ice-rink to learn more, find daily open hours, and see a schedule of events. admission is $6 daily, and ice skate rental $2. Ages 3 and under are free with a paying adult. For more information call 937-278-2607.

• Pedal Wagon Dayton: The weather outside might be frightful, but good times are still to be had aboard the Pedal Wagon. Adults 21 and over can grab a seat on the Polar Bear Express for $25 or book a private ride starting at $299. Go to pedalwagon.com/dayton/polar-bear-express/ for more information.

• Picture Perfect Paint Parties at 123 N. Ludlow St.: Come and enjoy our grape tastings of the month and a mini-paint party canvas. Register at www.pictureperfectpaintparties.com or call 937-265-0691 for more information.

• Rabbit Hole Books, at 29 W. First St.: Enjoy milk, cookies, and extended hours to kick off a Kids’ Holiday Weekend.

• Sole Touchers, 37 S. St. Clair St.: Mention First Friday to receive 25 percent off all shoes in store.

• Talbott Tower, at 131 N. Ludlow St.: Enjoy live music, food, and beer while shopping with special discounts at more than 20 businesses.

• Vidia’s Closet, at 27 S. St. Clair St.: This women’s clothing boutique in the St. Clair Lofts on First Friday features 20 percent off the entire purchase. Shop in-store and enjoy a complimentary glass of wine.

• Wild Whiskers, at 33 S. St. Clair St.: All month long, enjoy 50 percent off Fussie Cat Pouches and Fine Dining Pate Cans, $3 off Boxie Cat Clay Litter, $2 off answers Pet Food Frozen Kefir, $5 off Vital Essentials frozen dog food, and 25-50 percent off of other select items!

• Yellow Cab Tavern, located at 700 E. Fourth St.: Handmade Holiday returns on Dec. 1 and 2 with more than 30 local artists and vendors selling handmade jewelry, pottery, fiber arts, paintings, candles, soaps, food, and more!

The Downtown Dayton Partnership’s website has a complete list of downtown’s arts and cultural amenities, as well as a dining guide, parking map, and much more.

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