Dayton

Xenia, Ohio Can Be Your Historical, Natural Home

Comes packed with a history lesson and acts as trail hub.

March 13, 2018

By

Jessica Reyes

on

Oct 16, 2018

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“Xenia” comes from the Greek word for “hospitality,” which makes sense with the welcoming community that Xenia offers to its residents. About 21 miles south of Dayton, it’s considered part of Dayton’s Metropolitan Statistical Area, meaning it’s close enough to the city so that you can commute and visit. 

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Brimming with both historical and natural attractions, it’s difficult to pick just a few, but we’ve done you the favor of highlighting some of the most popular spots that you should consider:

  • Xenia Station
  • Greene County Parks & Trails
  • Ohio Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Home
  • Jackson’s Market
  • Nick’s Restaurant

Xenia Station

Actually, there are two Xenia Stations and neither of them is stations! One Xenia Station is the building replica of the original railroad station that used to be at the same site, and the other is the park in which the replica resides. Xenia Station (both of them) used to the former PRR freight yards. The closest thing left of a railroad station is the leftover caboose from the old B&O Railroad, located nearby the park.

red caboose
‍Image courtesy of My Dayton Daily News

The park itself allows visitors to use its facilities to play, fish, and enjoy themselves. After years of existence, it has become one of Xenia’s most defining landmarks. The Xenia Station building also serves as a “hub” between five different bike trails and includes a “Hub Lookout” tower for visiting bikers.

Greene County Parks & Trails

Nearby Xenia Station is the base of Greene County Parks & Trails, which spans through Xenia and beyond. Their trail system has about 2,600 acres of parks and nature reserves to explore. In fact, they’re at the heart of five major bike trails with about 60 miles total of paved bike trails. In total, they have more than 330 miles of paved trails. They have pretty much anything an outdoor enthusiast would want like fishing spots, hiking trails, and picnic areas. The parks also offer many activities such as classes and camps.

Ohio Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Home

The Ohio Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Orphans’ Home (also known as the Ohio Veterans’ Children’s Home) isn’t actually an orphans’ home anymore, but people still remember the OSSO due to the work of the Association of Ex-Pupils (AXP). The AXP established a museum that the public often comes to visit to learn about the home’s history.

large brick building

The OSSO originally started in the 1870s as a home for children who lost their father in the Civil War and eventually expanded to include children who lost their father in any military conflict. Veterans and their spouses sometimes also admitted their children if they couldn’t afford to take care of them due to financial reasons. It’s no longer operational, but now holds a retirement community, Christian school, and other businesses.

Jackson’s Market

strawberries

Jackson’s Market is one of the best known local markets that specializes in homegrown produce. The locals know the place as a “permanent roadside market” that sells fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, and honey. Jackson’s is best known for their strawberries, so I suggest going in the early summer for strawberry season. You can even pick your own!

Nick’s Restaurant

restaurant patio
‍Courtesy of Yelp

Nick’s Restaurant opened as the vision of chef Nick Malavazos. Now, as a result of he and his staff’s hard work, Nick’s Restaurant has been able to survive decades of service and become a staple in Xenia. Family-owned, homestyle and pub foods are the restaurant’s specialties. Some customers mention the small space, but the restaurant aims to make you feel like part of the family. Besides, the patio area is airy and refreshing on a warm day!

And there’s even more dedicated to explaining Xenia’s history and nature reserves! If you’re interested in a community rich in historical and natural attractions, then check out Xenia.

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