10 great things to do in Dayton this weekend

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Mar. 29—A Dayton Easter tradition, an outstanding production of a Tony Award-winning musical comedy, and a tribute to a legendary rock band are among events to keep in mind during the last weekend of March.

1. Easter Sunrise Service at Carillon Park

When: 6:30 a.m. Sunday, March 31

Where: 1000 Carillon Blvd., Dayton

Details: The 83rd annual faith-based Easter Sunrise Service continues a tradition that began in 1942 when 10,000 people joined together for worship and reflection.

Cost: Free

More info: 937-293-2841 or daytonhistory.org

2. "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee"

When: Through March 31; 8 p.m. Friday; 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday; and 2 p.m. Sunday

Where: Festival Playhouse of the Creative Arts Center at Wright State University, 3640 Col. Glenn Hwy., Dayton

Details: Joe Deer directs and choreographs an outstanding production of composer William Finn and librettist Rachel Sheinkin's charming, hilarious and touching 2005 Tony Award-winning musical about six awkward spelling champions. The show is double-cast but you're bound to enjoy the character-specific performances and strong vocals of each. Standouts at the March 15 performance I attended include Claire Northcut (Rona Lisa Peretti), Sam Evans (Olive Ostrovsky), Aidan Edwards (Chip Tollentino) and James Newton (William Barfee). Having returned March 22, Joclyn Blake (Marcy Park), Eli Peel (Leaf Coneybear) and an excellently soulful Evette Williamson (Midge Mahoney) delivered notable work. Also, Ray Zupp's colorful set design beautifully elevates in order to heighten the mystique within Finn's superb ballad "The I Love You Song."

Cost: $15-$25

More info: 937-775-2500 or liberal-arts.wright.edu/fine-and-performing-arts

3. This Must Be the Party

When: 8:30 p.m. Saturday; March 30. Doors at 8 p.m.

Where: The Brightside, 905 E. Third St., Dayton

Details: This Must Be the Party: A Tribute to the Talking Heads features area musicians recreating the iconic concert film "Stop Making Sense" from 1984. Jonathan Demme, the director of "Melvin & Howard," "Philadelphia" and "The Silence of the Lambs," filmed four nights of performances by Talking Heads at the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood in December 1983. The first local tribute show was in 2015 and was presented again in 2019 and 2023. (Don Thrasher)

Cost: $20 general admission in advance, $25 day of show

More info: 937-410-0450 or thebrightsidedayton.com

4. "Flight of the Lawnchair Man"

When: Through April 7; 8 p.m. Fridays, 5 p.m. Saturdays and 3 p.m. Sundays

Where: Dayton Theatre Guild, 430 Wayne Ave., Dayton

Details: Kimberly Warrick directs an admirable, good-natured production of librettist Peter Ullian and composer Robert Lindsey-Nassif's kooky musical about an Average Joe from New Jersey who finds his purpose in flight. Strong tenor Aaron Hill is a likable focal point as Jerry Gorman and he receives totally committed support from Jeannine Elizabeth Sandlin as Gracie, Jerry's girlfriend. In addition, Drew Roby is a major draw as the aptly named Big Jack Preston, an arrogant airline pilot shocked to see Jerry floating at 16,000 feet aided by 400 balloons. Yes, it's that kind of quirky show.

Cost: $14-$21

More info: 937-278-5993 or daytontheatreguild.org

5. Candlelight Concerts: Coldplay

When: 6 and 8:30 p.m. Saturday, March 30

Where: Dayton Masonic Center, 525 W Riverview Ave., Dayton

Details: A tribute to Grammy Award-winning rock band Coldplay is the latest candlelight concert at Dayton Masonic Center. Candlelight concerts bring the magic of a live, multi-sensory musical experience to awe-inspiring locations in Dayton.

Cost: $34-$53

More info: 937-559-4590 or www.daytonmasoniccenter.org

6. Ghostbusters at the Plaza

When: 4 and 7 p.m. Saturday, March 30

Where: Plaza Theatre, 33 S. Main St., Miamisburg

Details: In conjunction with the Plaza's screening of "Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire," the Real Ohio Ghostbusters and Cincinnati Ghostbusters will be at the theatre along with a few Ghostbusters vehicles outside.

Cost: Free

More info: myplazatheatre.com

7. "Celebrate Art!"

When: Through Sunday, April 28; 12-5 p.m. Thursdays, 3-8 p.m. Fridays, 12-5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays

Where: Edward A. Dixon Gallery, 222 N. Sinclair St., Dayton

Details: The Edward A. Dixon Gallery has curated artwork featuring Kate Santucci, Zuri Ali, Paul Rienzo and Cynthia Kukla. Also, art collectors, art patrons and those new to art are invited to a gathering entitled Celebrate Art! from 6-8:30 p.m. Friday, March 29 at the gallery. A few of the artists will be on hand, and refreshments will be provided along with a DJ.

Cost: Free

More info: https://shop.eadgallery.com

8. Devil Wind Blues

When: 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, March 29 and 30

Where: Devil Wind Brewing, 130 S. Detroit St., Xenia

Details: The craft brewery hosts two of the area's hottest blues guitarists this weekend. Xenia-based Eric Henry, host of "The Blues Revival" on WYSO-FM (91.3), performs Friday. Cincinnati-based Noah Wotherspoon, performing Saturday, is a seasoned professional who already had years of experience playing live when he graduated from Beavercreek High School in 2000. (Don Thrasher)

Cost: Free

More info: 937-919-6417 or devilwindbrewing.com

9. "Were I A Bird: Tree Studies"

When: Through March 30 by appointment.

Where: Dutoit Gallery, 1001 East Second Street, Building 100, B-C Door, Third Floor, Dayton

Details: This exhibit features the photographic work of Paula Willmot Kraus, who planned this exhibit and took the photographs, though she passed away before she was able to print her work in the darkroom. Her work focuses on subjects that are drawn from her immediate surroundings. She often uses nature and natural forms to explore memory, emotions and formal aesthetics.

Cost: Free

More info: dutoitgallery.com

10. Dayton Silent Disco Prom Night

When: 8:30 p.m. Friday, March 29

Where: The Brightside, 905 E. Third St., Dayton

Details: You're invited to get dressed up and dance the night away. KimL will be on the green station with EDM, Sexbox on the blue station with '70s, '80s, and '90s, and John Chapel on the Red station with modern hits.

Cost: $15 in advance; $20 at the door

More info: daytonsilentdisco.com