Dayton’s oldest and ritziest gala postponed due to coronavirus

Dayton’s most opulent gala has been postponed due to concerns about the coronavirus pandemic.

“It is with a heavy heart, but also with great resolve, that I share the news that this June’s Art Ball will be postponed,” Michael  Roediger, CEO of the Dayton Art Institute, said as part of a press release. “I am working closely with the DAI leadership team to determine how the museum will carefully proceed.”

The 63rd annual gala was to occur June 13.

>> RELATED (June 04, 2019) Dayton Art Institute’s Art Ball: Celebrating 100 years of a community institution

A new date for the event, the 100-year-old museum's  second largest fundraiser behind Oktoberfest, has not been determined, but officials anticipate the event will be rescheduled to late fall.

In  2019, Art Ball netted $169,564 in revenue, DAI officials said.

“When we do host this prestigious community event, we want our guests to enter the museum doors with excitement and a sense of safety,” Roediger said. “We want to welcome our members and guests back with open arms.”


A new date will be announced and the museum, working with Art Ball chairs Ariel and Brian Walker, will determine what format is most appropriate for this year’s event, the release says.

Art Ball, Dayton’s oldest black-tie gala, dates back to 1957.


Organized by the DAI’s Associate Board and traditionally held on the second Saturday in June, it has included a cocktail hour, dinner in the galleries, and music and dancing.

“My wish is that when we do all gather again, we will come together stronger and ready to embrace the future of the museum and the events we all love so dearly,” Roediger said.

Like most institutions, the Dayton Art Institute is currently closed due to the coronavirus pandemic. Programs through at least the end of April have been postponed or canceled.

>> Dayton’s Art Ball has been the swankiest night of the year for more than 60 years 

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