What luxury to ride bikes in Ohio! Dad and I rode almost the entire 32 miles today on nicely paved off-road bike paths, and we couldn’t have asked for better weather.
We started the day at the only farmers market I could find in Dayton, the Wright Dunbar Farm Market, which consisted of one truck from Stubbs Family Farm, loaded down with beautiful produce and meat and baked goods from their farm and an Amish friend’s farm in Indiana. Not quite the bustling Urbana market, but I did talk to a few people. Like the 61st Street Farmers Market in Chicago, the Stubbs take EBT cards, and this farm stand is one of the few sources of fresh food for neighborhood residents. They’re in their first year, and while Dayton is evidently a difficult municipality to convince of the value of markets, hopefully the success and popularity of the Wright Dunbar Farm Market will lead to more much-needed markets throughout the city.
And, it was across the street from the Wright Cycle Co, home of the Wright Brothers’ famous bike shop!
And, across from the studio/gallery of Willis “Bing” Davis, an incredible artist, ambassador, and bringer of life and inspiration to Dayton and the Wright Dunbar community. The neighborhood was burned down after Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated, and left to rot until Bing Davis took initiative a few years ago, got some local resident contractors and construction workers to team up with students at the nearby vocational school, and reconstructed the building that now houses the Ebonnia Gallery. It’s no ordinary gallery, though – it’s a school, a youth center, and the heart of many initiatives run by Bing and his wife to promote the arts, culture, and history of Dayton. He has truly transformed the Wright Dunbar neighborhood, so that riding our bikes across the river in the morning, I remarked at the spirit of the place – it really shone above the surrounding, languishing residential areas, and meeting Bing makes me certain that he is to thank.
We got on the road in the early afternoon, with no fears of overheating after such a chilly morning. Dad took some videos on the road, complete with lots and lots of wind noise. See if you can hear anything we’re saying.
We were lucky enough to stop for a little drag racing outside of Xenia…a perfect addition to the county fair and baseball game of the previous evening.
After a tour through this beautiful, perfectly chill town and a delicious, long-awaited pizza dinner, I sat listening to Aaron play piano while the parents chatted around the fire circle in the backyard. Yet more wonderful people I’ve met on this trip, which should be inspiring to all those timid souls who think America’s country roads are full of crazies.