Located in the heart of the Shenandoah Valley, the town of Dayton is one of the oldest settled communities in Rockingham County. Dayton is surrounded by prime agricultural farmland, mainly owned and farmed by members of the Old Order Mennonite community.
Dayton is home to a national historic registered landmark, The Daniel Harrison House, also known as Fort Harrison, is the oldest house in Dayton and is listed as a national historic landmark.
The Dayton Farmers Market offers shopping at 20 specialty shops featuring a wide variety of merchandise, including locally-made items. Nearby is the Silver Lake Mill, a landmark structure that now houses a store that offers mill-themed products, and collectibles.
Dayton’s oldest and most attended event is the Dayton Autumn Celebration, also known as “Dayton Days,” an arts and crafts festival held annually on the first Saturday in October. The festival attracts an estimated 20,000 attendees annually and is known for handmade quilts and food.
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The Silver Lake Mill was built in 1822, in Dayton, Virginia, a few miles south of the City of Harrisonburg. The mill pond there is a favorite subject for photographers. Photo: Hank Zimmerman