Going into Dayton, to see a show or performance at
The Schuster, is always a treat. It's a beautiful structure, inside and out!
But there was a time that going down to Second and Main meant something very different.To Daytonians it meant, "Going down to Rike's".
Rikes was a seven-story department store in downtown Dayton, Ohio. It began in the 1850's as a dry goods firm and moved to the corner of Second and Main in 1912 where it remained until it was demolished in 1999.
Once upon a time, a wonderful and magical holiday tradition was on prominent display, entertaining and delighting children of all ages - hopefully creating memories that would last for the duration of their lives.
These glorious windows became the focal point of Christmas in downtown Dayton, and nearly every area family would bring children downtown each December to enjoy the magnificent presentations featuring dancing elves, woodland creatures, happy families and all manner of holiday delights!
Yes, for most of us who grew up in the Dayton, Ohio area, going down to Rike's department store during the holidays was a must do! Their windows were just such fun! I can still remember standing in the bitter temperatures, nose pressed to the cold glass, drinking in every single detail each scene offered.
Now, I am sure that to our technology fed children, these scenes seem all too simple in nature and but to us, the children of the 50s and 60s, they were an integral part of our Christmas magic.
When Rike's was imploded to make way for the Schuster, these scenes were salvaged and reconditioned. Each holiday season they are, once again, brought to life in the very spots where they once delighted scores of children. Where once they were inside of Rike's, they now spend the holidays inside the Wintergarden section of the Schuster Center. They stand ready to bring smiles to the young ones and fond memories to those of us who are a wee bit older! What a treat for the children of today and for those of of a *certain* age who still remember this sweet holiday delight
and have kept their child like enthusiasm locked securely in their heart!
Love from your Rabbit Run Cottage photographer...Susie Q!