» WATCH: The completed Riverscape River Run project opens May 5
The first completed river chute, located in the park on East Monument Avenue near the Dayton Art Institute, includes two features: one smooth-water passageway for novice paddlers and a whitewater chute for those daredevil kayakers.
The free grand opening event starts at 4:30 p.m. with official remarks from community leaders. Project partners include leaders from the park district, the Downtown Dayton Partnership, Miami Conservancy District, city of Dayton and Montgomery County.
» WHAT ELSE IS COMING? 19 projects that are changing downtown Dayton
Those celebrating can also expect:
• The ceremonial first paddle starts at 5 p.m., when demonstration paddlers will show off what the new river run is capable of doing.
• The Five Rivers MetroParks music series Pickin’ in the Park will kick off at 6 p.m. after the official opening. The night will feature live tunes by progressive bluegrass musicians Casey Campbell, Restless Leg String Band and The Tillers.
• Local craft beer providers and food trucks will also be available to enjoy at the park.
After two years of construction, Riverscape River Run has been completed.
» RELATED: 5 things to know about downtown Dayton housing market
The $4 million project was funded by private sector companies, community partners and grants. The James M. Cox Foundation issued a $1 million challenge grant in July 2011 to jump start the project.
Mike Ervin, co-chair of the Downtown Dayton Partnership board, said he expects the attraction to be a “gathering space” for more than just kayakers. He envisions an outdoor space where live music will play often, bikers and runners will pass by while residents hang out on the rock structures near the river.
“This is not just for kayakers,” he said. “It’s a place-making opportunity. You create this great vibrant space … And it becomes a destination.”
FIVE FAST BUSINESS READS
• Kroger to create 600 jobs with new Dayton-area stores
• RETAIL ROUND-UP: 3 stories about Cabela's, RadioShack, Starbucks
• Development officials see growth in downtown
• Centerville strip mall demolished next to Elsa's
• Ohio economy to win big with future NCAA games