Bet this didn’t cost $750,000

I haven’t seen the UD students handbook- but, I bet it does a better job than anything the Dayton Development Coalition got for their $750,000 on Get Midwest at promoting Dayton:

UD students create handbook promoting downtown Dayton – Dayton Business Journal:
A group of University of Dayton seniors are trying to debunk the myth that there’s nothing to do in downtown Dayton.

The students have created a new entertainment guidebook “Beyond Brown: A Student Guide to Downtown Dayton.” They hope it will convince other students to get off campus and explore downtown Dayton, which despite being only minutes from the campus is untraveled territory for many students, they say.

“We personally had noticed students on campus saying things like, ‘There is nothing to do around here but drink,’ or ‘Downtown is just a mud pit,'” said Joshua Rauch, one of the 14 students who worked on the project. “We are trying to correct the perception that Dayton doesn’t offer anything, because it does,” he said.

Students began distributing the guidebook last week. They ordered 3,500 copies, enough to supply one to every dorm room and student house on campus and have limited copies left over for wider distribution.

The students are part of the first class of The Dayton Civic Scholars, a program designed for students interested in urban affairs and pursuing careers in public service.

The 54-page color handbook features a price guide, transportation options, parking map, student-reviewed hotspots, student photography and a handpicked directory of downtown’s restaurants, entertainment venues, cultural activities, parks and recreation sites, shopping opportunities and seasonal events.

“This is something not only the campus can use but anyone who goes downtown, whether it’s members of the city commission, city stakeholders or citizens,” said Dean Lovelace, Dayton Civic Scholars director and a Dayton city commissioner.

What’s odd, is no mention of the Downtown Dayton Partnership.  It’d make sense to publish the pdf on their site- so others can download it – and print it themselves (a no-cost solution).

It’s great to see UD students taking an initiative to contribute and problem solve- even if they are getting college credit for it.

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8 Comments on "Bet this didn’t cost $750,000"

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The biggest problem with telling people “what to do and where to go” is that Downtown businesses disappear like a fart in the wind, closing or relocating to the suburbs. I suggest they print like 500 copies and rewrite every six months.

“Things to do in Downtown Dayton: Go Before The Business Closes (or relocates!)”

Like Boston’s Bistro, That One Minute Wine Bar, a number of Restaurants, not to mention ZIP for retail, the Has Been Arcade, The ever changing names and management of the Alternative/Gay/Dance clubs and bars, etc.

I have always loved the businesses that are still there but are bad for a downtown area and should be in more of an “industrial” or “commercial” part of the city – like Mont Paper, Mendelsons, ………… of course there are many others.

What happened to Downtown Dayton Days?

The City that Rots


Negative, Negative, Negative. Look on the bright side, when David is our Congressman maybe things will change. I’m glad to see some of the students giving it a try. The pdf is a great idea, it can be updated when ever. Where can I get my copy? Did Boston’s used to be downtown? I frequent the N. Main & Dog Leg location.


yeah, in the Eva Feldman Apartments, ground floor, 2nd & Jefferson.

“The ever changing names and management of the Alternative/Gay/Dance clubs and bars, etc.”


The Stage Door has been at the same location since the early 1970s, and the license was the old Latin Lounge (where Boston Stoker is now, but before urban renewal).

This is supposedly the oldest gay bar in Ohio (or liquor liscense associated with a gay bar), although I think Golden Lions in Cincinnati is pretty old too. It’s had only one change in ownership in the past 20 years, when the former owner, Willy Livesay died.

The Stage Door also had staff that dated way back too. Their old doorman used to be the piano player at the old 1960s-era gay piano bar on the second floor of the Victoria, the Tae Tae.

You could tell the Stage Door was old school because its phone book entry had it as the “Stage Door Musical Bar”: to say someone was “musical” was old slang for “gay”. Sort of “Freind of Dorothy” or “Festive”.

The Right Corner is probably the second longest lived bar, being the relocated version of the old Changes (used to be across from the SpagHouse)(and has elements in it from the former bar). The ‘Corner is probably 10-13 years old now, and has staff who worked at the old Changes at least 20 years ago.

Hmph..maybe I should blog on Dayton gay history a bit more.


When I went to UD I knew nothing of the surround area besides the bus route to the mall and movie theatre. There can be nothing bad about UD promoting activities downtown to people with disposable income. The Brown Street face lift is great, if any of that cash goes downtown it is a good thing.


Notice there is the Alternative and Dance in there too, Jeff.

There has been a rotating door of people and businesses downtown. A couple of examples is hardly proof of a thriving downtown.

Laura Woeste
Laura Woeste

The DBJ article didn’t mention it, but the Downtown Dayton Partnership worked with the Dayton Civic Scholars from the very beginning on this project and we met with the students several times. We provided them with our downtown guide that we produce each year, and they took that information and catered it more to the college student. We also helped them raise some money through ad sales in the back of the guide. Initially this guide was supposed to come out at the beginning of the 2007-2008 school year so it could be distributed when students first arrived, but the timeline shifted a little. They did all the design work and it really turned out really nice.

We are currently working on a program that connects all area college students, not just UD, to downtown. A guide similar to this one will be available on a new site that is being created for all campuses to use. A guide very similar to Beyond Brown (our “Downtown at Your Fingertips” guide) is currently available on our website. It can be accessed by visiting the publications section of our website –


Jeff, thanks for that primer on Dayton’s downtown gay clubs! Learned a lot – hope you DO blog more about them.


“We are currently working on a program that connects all area college students, not just UD, to downtown. A guide similar to this one will be available on a new site that is being created for all campuses to use.”

This is a good thing. Downtown is pretty desolate but I think some more nighlife could help pick things up.

One of the problems (for str8 folk) is the clubs are dispersed around downtown. J-Alans is one of my favorite little spots for “after the show”, but you ca’nt really pub crawl from there. Downtown clubland for str8 folk is really that area around the parking garage..Pearl, Hammerjax, Elbos if it ever reopens, and the Century.

Ah yes, the Century. The real jewel of downtown, with the backbar to die for and a good jukebox. That place is really one of my favorite bars in town, actually more during happy hour. It picks up later but the crowd is more yound adult, not m-m-m-my generation (but still nice for quick pitstop).

That Hutchins debacle really screwed things up, as that’s what closed The Unicorn and Bostons. Almost closed the Wright Corner. Unicorn was interesting as it was a mostly black bar, but had an older crowd.

But yeah, hear hear for dis marketing to da yute!