Kettering is located in Montgomery and Greene counties. With a population of more than 56,000 residents, the city is the biggest suburb of Dayton. Historians say the area where Kettering is located was first settled between the late 1700s and mid-1800s. In those times, it was mostly farmland. However, the population in the area eventually grew, which prompted the establishment of Van Buren Township in 1841. Later, in 1952, voters in the township incorporated the town into what became the Village of Kettering.
By 1955, the village’s population had grown to 38,118 people, which enabled it to attain city status. On June 24 of that year, however, the official proclamation came from the state. Kettering is named in honor of the famous inventor, Charles F. Kettering, who lived here. His home is known as Ridgeleigh Terrace. He lived there from 1914 until the time of his death in 1958. Kettering was known for his numerous inventions and his contributions to the Dayton area. From the 1950s and into the 1970s, the population in Kettering grew to more than 30,000 residents. Much of this growth was in large part because so many people started moving away from Dayton after World War II. Since the 1980s, however, Kettering’s population has been declining because of its aging population and a drastic decrease in the number of manufacturing jobs available.
With nearly 20 parks sprawling over a combined 284 acres, Kettering is home to the Fraze Pavilion, which serves as a major outdoor entertainment venue that serves as host for the summer concerts of the Dayton Philharmonic. Kettering also has the James S. Trent Arena, which opened in 2005 and has a seating capacity of 4,400 people overall, in addition to Skate Plaza, which is a 40,000-square-foot skate park that was established the same year a product of a collaboration between the city and its native resident national celebrity Rob Dyrdek, who was professional skateboarder who grew up in Kettering.