Every time you crack a pop can, you're holding a piece of Dayton. But the soda-can pull tab is just a B-lister in the annals of Dayton inventions, which include the cash register (1879) and most famously, the airplane (1903).

What to do

Carillon Historical Park The 65-acre indoor-outdoor museum covers Dayton history. See the original 1905 Wright Flyer III and a circa 1924 Sun Oil Station. daytonhistory.org

Dayton Art Institute Immerse yourself in a diverse collection art spanning 5,000 years. daytonartinstitute.org

Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park Sites with an overview of the Wright brothers' lives kick off an exploration of Dayton's role in aviation history; nps.gov/daav

National Museum of the U.S. Air Force Acres of airplane hangars await, housing items outlining the early history of military flight through World War II. The collection spans a 1909 Wright Military Flyer, retired presidential planes and lunar landers. nationalmuseum.af.mil

RiverScape River Run Kayakers can take a 7-mile paddle down the Great Miami River. metroparks.org

Wright Cycle Company Complex Rangers and displays answer questions about Dayton's aviation history. And you'll find an overview of the Wright brothers' lives and the quirky Parachute Museum on the second floor. (937) 225-7705; nps.gov/daav

Wright Flyer III
Wright Flyer III.

Where to eat

The Pine Club This restaurant has been serving terrific steak dinners since 1947 and stays proudly old-school (no credit cards; no reservations). thepineclub.com

Butter Cafe Breakfast on free-range eggs and French toast kabobs at this adorable spot near the University of Dayton. buttercafedayton.com

El Meson A lunch of Mexican food is a fiesta when eaten on the colorful glass-roofed patio. elmeson.net

El Meson

Roost Dine on modern Italian fare such as braised lamb shank and puttanesca. roostdayton.com

Carillon Brewing Company Technique and recipes adhere to the antebellum era. carillonbrewingco.org

Where to stay

Marriott at the University of Dayton This recently renovated college-town hotel honors the Wright brother's first plane design. marriott.com

For more information daytoncvb.com