Carillon Historical Park

 Carillon Historical Park

Innovation meets fun at Dayton History’s Carillon Historical Park.

Home to the 1905 Wright Flyer III, the carousel of Dayton Innovation, an outdoor museum complex with 30 exhibit buildings and The Carillon Brewing Company, Carillon Historical Park has many amenities and activities for all ages. 

“We’re trying to show that Dayton’s history is everyone’s history,” says Lauryn Bayliff, director of community development at Dayton History. 

It’s also a place to have fun, whether that is learning at one of the many exhibits, at summer camps or at events held at the park.

Summer camps set Carillon Historical Park apart because they not only are fun, but they also teach kids about the past, creating a valuable learning experience. 

The Settler Survival Camps give kids, ages 8-12, a chance to learn woodworking, hearth cooking, candle dipping, chores and gardening. Bayliff says that during the camp, youth learn what it was like to establish a homestead, similar to what the first settlers in the Dayton area would have experienced. 

For kids more interested in learning about aviation and the Wright Brothers, Dayton History offers an overnight Flight by Night summer camp in the museum. This newer summer camp parallels one of Dayton History’s newest acquisitions. 

The nonprofit organization is now managing the National Aviation Hall of Fame Learning Center at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. Since the center is separate from the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, Dayton History is employing retired air force members, pilots and engineers to add something to the learning center. 

“We are stepping up the personal touch,” says Bayliff, adding that there are interactive activities for visitors, too. 

On top of that, Carillon Historical Park’s History on a Hill Interpretive Center has a new exhibit, which opened on May 21, called The Great Glacier Exhibit. The exhibit reveals what southwest Ohio may have been like during the Ice Age. 

“We’re a one-stop shop for any activity,” says Bayliff. 

While Dayton History is working on multiple projects, the museum will be adding nearly 100 more NCR cash registers to its current exhibit, too. 

Dayton History also hosts multiple events throughout the year, both private and public, for visitors and guests to the park. Organizations, like the Carillon Park Rail and Steam Society, work with Dayton History to host events like the Carillon Park Rail Festival, held June 27-28 this year. 

“It gives people a way to experience trains on a different level,” says Bayliff. 

The festival features miniature train rides, live steam engines, model train displays, historical exhibits, vendors and more. 

“It’s focused on transportation by rail,” says Bayliff. 

Some of the many other Dayton History special events are the Dayton Heritage Festival, the Dayton Concours d’Elegance and Ringing in the Holidays. 

With the current exhibits and upcoming activities at Dayton History, Bayliff says, “You could spend more than a day here.”