While you’re out and about enjoying the Dayton Holiday Festival and the riches of Dayton holiday lights (some of the BEST in Ohio), you can also explore many unique holiday shopping options around the Dayton & Montgomery County area. Sure, it may be easy to point, click and buy online, but there’s a certain joy to shopping in person, as well as that warm feeling you’re sure to get by supporting the local economy and local businesses.
We’ve put together a brief roundup of our top 5 recommendations for unique holiday shopping options. For those of you who still prefer shopping online, we’ve included some cyber options as well (but with distinctly local components!).
1. Local Holiday Markets
The Dayton area offers a number of unique holiday markets, featuring a wide range of items from local vendors and artisans. We’ve highlighted a few here:
Christkindl Markets at Front Street Galleries and the Dayton Liederkranz Turner German Club: Two German style Christmas Markets take place this year, one on November 25 at the Front Street Galleries and the other on December 9 & 10 at the Dayton Liederkranz Turner German Club.
Holiday Craft & Gift Show at Montgomery County Fairgrounds: Taking place on November 24 & 25, this show features over 110 vendors.
Winter Gift Gallery at K12 Gallery for Young People & TEJAS: From November 21 - January 16, artists will showcase paintings, ceramics, blown glass, prints and jewelry for sale.
Handmade Holiday at Yellow Cab Tavern: On December 1 & 2 Yellow Cab Tavern will host an event featuring specialty cocktails, food trucks, and an art and craft bazaar that brings together dozens of local artisans and vendors selling unique, locally made goods.
Holly Days at The Dayton Arcade: A Dayton tradition for many years, the Arcade’s flagship holiday event returns, December 6-8. This year’s three-day event includes holiday performances, a festive artisan market and food trucks.
CoSHOP Holiday: A rotating selection of home decor, personal care products, greeting cards, books, beautiful ceramics and glass art, limited edition art prints and more curated by our team of art lovers, historians, book nerds and decor enthusiasts. Holiday hours include Wednesday-Saturday 11 a.m.-6 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Buy online, pick up in store!
2. Downtown Dollars – Holiday Bonus Buy Edition
Downtown Dollars is an e-gift card program created by the Downtown Dayton Partnership to keep local dollars with Dayton’s downtown businesses. When you purchase Downtown Dollars, you receive a digital e-gift card that can be redeemed at more than 80 participating locations around the downtown Dayton area – everything from local shops to restaurants and even the Dayton Dragons!
See the participating businesses
How it Works: Select the total amount of Downtown Dollars you wish to purchase. Choose your recipient (family, friends or yourself) and send via email or text message. The recipient can use that value to make purchases at participating gift card merchants!
Read more about the program and purchase your Downtown Dollars at the Downtown Dayton Partnership website.
3. Museum Store Sunday
Sure you’ve heard of Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday, but did you know that Museum Store Sunday is a thing? It is! On Sunday, November 26, consider supporting local museums and galleries like the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, Boonshoft Museum of Discovery, Dayton Art Institute, Carillon Historical Park, The Contemporary Dayton (The Co), Aullwood Audubon Center & Farm and America's Packard Museum by shopping at their stores.
4. Give the Gift of Experiences
Studies have shown that experiences can be some of the best holiday gifts, whether it’s tickets to an event or a membership to an area attraction. Here are a few suggestions:
A gift membership to one of our area attractions like the Dayton Art Institute, Carillon Historical Park or the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery is the gift that keeps on giving, as they say, offering free admission throughout the year.
Not a museum kind of person? Think about gifting tickets to a performance or sporting event! Dayton showcases some spectacular art performances and winter is the thriving season for them! The Dayton Performing Arts Alliance and Dayton Live have an abundance of tickets to varying opera, philharmonic, ballet, musical, and more shows to choose from. For those sports lovers, First Four is a treasured NCAA basketball event that Dayton is pleased to yet again be the host of. Witness the intense moments of a collegiate tournament in action when you buy your tickets!
5. Explore Local Shopping Districts & Centers
Don’t forget to explore the many unique stores in the various Dayton-area shopping districts and centers, including the Oregon Historic District, the Shops of Oakwood, Town & Country Shopping Center, the historic downtowns in Centerville and Miamisburg, Austin Landing and more.
Still haven't found the BEST gift for someone, visit the Downtown Dayton Partnership's Holiday Gift Guide for more inspiration!
Where do you love to shop? What’s the best holiday gift you’ve received? Let us know in the comments! While you’re out doing all that shopping, grab a bit to eat at one of our many local restaurants and maybe snag a gift card to one for a gift. See restaurant listings here at DaytonCVB.com for some great suggestions.
Image: Holly Days at The Dayton Arcade
For more information on things to do in Dayton, contact the Dayton Convention & Visitors Bureau at 937-226-8211 (Monday-Friday) or download the free Visit Dayton App from Google Play or the Apple Store. Be in the Know on All Things Dayton!