I’m an Ohio girl, born and raised. From the Cleveland area, went to school in Cincinnati and now live in Columbus. I tell people I get around the state quite a bit, but I definitely have had my go-to entertainment districts and up until this weekend, Dayton was not one of them. I’ll be honest, nearly every time I’ve gone to Dayton it’s been raining and there’s construction. But a few weeks ago I had a taste of something I wanted to sink my teeth into and I had to schedule a time to go back. Our trip centered around one key adventure – the Blue Note Bistro & Lounge. You probably haven’t heard of it, and I’m a bit nervous to divulge my secrets, but if you’re looking for something new to try – follow me…
Miamisburg, OH is about an hour and twenty minutes from Columbus. We decided it would be best to make an overnight out of our trip to the Blue Note. Word on the street? They’ve got great music and a wine cellar – ’nuff said. This particular Saturday afternoon was unseasonably perfect and we didn’t want a minute of it to go to waste. We thought the best bet would be to stop somewhere on the way that we could check out – walk around, see some shops, (for TJ) drink some beer – so we set our sights on Yellow Springs, OH. I had the chance to visit Yellow Springs a few months ago and wrote about its cool new hotel the Mills Park Hotel. That time, I didn’t get a chance to explore the town which has a huge art scene, but I wanted to. It was too cute! There are little shops everywhere and musicians on the street. Who would have thought?
As we’re driving, TJ proclaims that he is pretty sure there is a brewery in Yellow Springs (he would know!). After a quick Google search I confirm this and now he is interested. Yellow Springs is situated on a bike path (or maybe the bike path is situated around Yellow Springs, but you get the picture!) and today, bicyclists were out in full force. Despite the crowds, we found easy parking on the street (it’s free! for all you city slickers), just across from the Mills Park Hotel. We headed to find a latte for me – very important when the sun is setting and you’re window shopping. We found the cutest store – Oats. They sold all kinds of neat antique pieces for the home. You
probably could guess that we left with an old metal BEER sign for our at-home bar. After that we wound our way to the Yellow Springs Brewery and Taproom, located a few blocks from downtown. This place was happenin’. A food truck was parked outside and nearly every seat indoor and outdoor (in February!) was full. Something a bit different about this taproom is that there wasn’t a TV in sight. The place was filled with artwork and there was a big cart of games for people to play. A startling idea – a bar not having TV’s, but instead you walked in to the sound of conversation, laughter and glasses clinking. We decided to have a light appetizer because our dinner reservation was late. The food truck parked outside, Smokin’ Bee-Bee-Q, was
dishing out Mac n’ Cheese Waffles with Pulled Pork & Slaw – so we split one! Delicious!
With full bellies, we decided we should make our way to Miamisburg with a quick pit stop at our hotel. We were so fortunate to have been graciously hosted by the team at the Holiday Inn Express & Suites Dayton Mall/I-675. The staff was super friendly and ready to make our night a memorable
one. Our room was beautiful! I’ve said it before, but if you haven’t been in a new package Holiday Inn recently, make sure to check one out. Our suite was spacious and beautiful. I loved the homey accents – rounded ottomans and small lamps. This hotel had a pool (which we didn’t have time to use) and great fitness center and complimentary breakfast. Highly recommend it!
Even better, the hotel is a straight shot to downtown Miamisburg, where the Blue Note was located. We were running a bit ahead of schedule so we swung into A Taste of
Wine for a glass of vino. We were pleasantly surprised to see a packed house and a live band. The staff selected fantastic wine for us and we spent an hour listening to the sounds of Mind Reels. We were walking distance to our final stop, so parking and navigating was easy. We arrived at Blue Note just before the next show started and were quickly seated at our stage side table. There are so many amazing things about this venue, I can’t capture it all in one post. To begin, this space is a converted bank building, so it’s unique and in a great location. The high ceilings and beautiful archways are a fantastic backdrop for a live music venue. The whole place is lit by blue lighting and portraits of famous jazz musicians. The menus? They light up! The food was delicious. I started with the Blue Note Salad and had the Chicken La Poire. TJ also started with the Blue Note Salad and had the Tournedos Dumas. We split a great bottle of wine with our company, sat back and relaxed. On stage that night was The Satchmo Show featuring Dean Simms – a Louis Armstrong impersonator. They were amazing and kept the crowd engaged all evening. After an outstanding show, good food and great company, we tucked in for the evening, but not before grabbing donuts at Bear Creek Donuts for breakfast the following morning.
One of my favorite things is discovering new ways to enjoy the great state of Ohio. No matter how much I travel, or how many people I meet, there are surprises around every corner. If you haven’t yet visited Yellow Springs or Miamisburg, you are missing out on some amazing experiences. So what are you waiting for?
“People don’t take trips, trips take people.” – John Steinbeck