Patterson Park News

New Sanitation Resources Posted

New neighbors need some help with the trash schedules and the ins and outs of city living and keeping things clean? Interested in how to organize a block cleanup? Need the details on dealing with rats in the city? Check out the PPNA Sanitation page, where we’ve added a lot of new resources. Anything else you’d like to see, let us know!

Patterson Park buzzes with activity in the summer

Cannons at Patterson Park

Cannons at Patterson Park

I kept saying “Wow” as I walked along East Pratt Street in Butchers Hill. The changes in this neighborhood over the nearly 40 years I’ve been writing about it amaze me. I think of the 1970s, when the streets lined with three-story brick homes imparted a depressing, worrying feeling. Could these potentially magnificent homes find a new life?

This summer I observed clean streets and washed windows. There was pride of ownership on every block.

What I encountered in the section of Southeast Baltimore generally known as Patterson Park left me anything but disappointed. The park’s flower beds had just been thoroughly weeded by volunteers. A Victorian fountain basin had just been scrubbed. Forrest Taylor, a master restorer of ancient field artillery, had his crew resetting the historic cannon once placed there to defend Hampstead Hill from the invading British in the War of 1812.

I stood on Pagoda Hill in the park and looked toward the Patapsco River and the Key Bridge. A rainy summer has kept the park lush. On a balmy midmorning, its paths were full of solitary walkers, dogs and their masters, and families with baby strollers. In the distance I kept hearing a port city’s train whistles.

The neighborhoods came with good housing bones, and so did the park itself. I pass through it a couple times a month and always think the place is being happily used the way a city greensward should be. This summer, its patronage seemed amazing.

Patterson Park was a summer sports camp: tennis courts full. Ditto the swimming pool, kickball and soccer fields, and the baseball diamond.

It’s obvious that someone loves Patterson Park. The city’s parks and rec department does its job, and a neighborhood-based organization, the Friends of Patterson Park, adds the right grace notes. The group does an exhaustive job of programming the place. I got winded just scanning its offerings: a water ballet, yoga under the trees, Zumba sessions, 5K training, an Audubon club and tennis lessons. Or you could help volunteer by cleaning the boat lake or mulching trees. These calls for service are answered. Some 38 people came out at 8 a.m. on a recent Saturday to get dirty in the lake and the tree pits.

“There are so many different kinds of people doing so many different things,” said Chris Ryer, director of Southeast Community Development Corp.

A few weeks ago I heard about something new. The Friends put out the word of a new dinosaur garden and a fairy garden. It turns out both of these are tucked into the base of the park’s fabled pagoda. The base plantings are basic hosta and black-eyed Susans. But here and there are miniature dinosaurs and their eggs. The fairy garden had wooden toadstools made by Mark Supik, a professional wood turner who makes stair spindles and beer tap handles when he is not volunteering.

The fairy garden was the concept of Janet Arndt, who died in 2014. She lived in nearby Canton and walked her dog and granddaughter here. When she died, she asked her friends to remember her with contributions to a fairy garden she envisioned.

Her daughter, Jennifer Arndt Robinson, is executive director of the Friends of Patterson Park. She concedes that she was initially a little skeptical.

“I kept telling my mother, ‘You have to be prepared for anything that might happen. This has to be a public place,'” she said.

The garden was dedicated July 21.

“We had more than 100 people,” Robinson said. “We saw such engagement from the children. They took such ownership in those gardens. It was amazing. People walked here. It’s obvious that more families are staying in the neighborhoods because of the parks.”

As evidence, she said, there are now seven children in the block of East Baltimore Street where she lives.

“We don’t spend out time on yardwork,” she said. “We use the park as our yard.”

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun

200 N. Belnord Street Bonanza!

January 2014, the Greening Partnership team was working hard on the infamous CBT Grant. A call was sent out to neighbors to incorporate any projects they had on their wish list. But the catch was, there had to be a block leader and this would remain their project to carry out, not the Greening Partnership’s project. Fatima Wilkerson was one of the neighbors to step up to the challenge. Fatima wanted her block green, so we came up with a planter project because her block is too small for trees. Fatima canvassed her neighborhood and got all of the neighbors to agree and sign pledges to maintain these planters. But they also wanted larger planters, so 4 large planters were agreed upon as place makers at the entrances to the block. Fatima went out to get quotes for all of the items needed and helped to write it into the CBT grant. She also wanted her block clean, so funding for an alley makeover was also asked for in the grant.

Fast forward to June 2015. With the help of the Greening Partnership and neighbors, Ms. Wilkerson picked up all of the items needed for the project, including creating fliers, canvassing her neighborhood for volunteers and creating excitement for the project. Healthy Harbor was so impressed with Fatima’s and the Greening Partnership’s dedication to this project, they offered to give us matching funds towards the purchase of the recycling bins and the trash cans.

The Bonanza was a huge success. Over thirty adults and fifty children came out to volunteer. Neighbors blasted music to make a festive atmosphere, food was donated and a grill was lit. Popsicles were shared to beat the heat. Tree pits were cleaned and mulched, the alleys were cleaned and all of the planters were planted and placed. The block completely transformed. The neighbors themselves were the first ones there at 9 am and were still going strong with last minute details at 3 pm.

The Greening Partnership loved working with Fatima. She had a spark of an idea, followed it through to completion and took care of all of the details in between. We helped and supported Fatima as much as possible and Fatima motivated us to work just as hard as she was working. Neighbors like Fatima are how we can get more similar projects completed.

Teressa Carter Wotring, Greening Partnership

PPNA July 13 General Meeting Minutes: Statistically Speaking, You Should Read This

Patterson Park Neighborhood Association

Monthly General Meeting
Monday, July 13th, 2015
St. Elizabeth of Hungary Church, Basement Multi-Purpose Room

2015 PPNA Board Introduction
Board introduces themselves, everyone has been here before! Crazy!

Citizens on Patrol!
COP walks are a bunch of fun! Feel free to bring your dog
Next C.O.P. Walk:
Wednesday, 7/22 at 7 pm
Park entrance at Linwood & Baltimore
Come patrol, meet your neighbors, chat with local law enforcement, pet some dogs. 

Special Mid-Year Election: Secretary Edition
A Secretary Election will be happening next meeting.
If you want to run, be there. If you know someone who wants to run, tell them to be there. If you’re looking to make some lawn signs, talk to Mark Parker.
Be at next month’s meeting to vote on the next PPNA Secretary!

Quarterly Newsletter Coordinator
A newsletter coordinator- WE NEED ONE. This is not a super-involved job, other people create the content and print the newsletter, we just need someone coordinate those things. Shout-out to Mazie, our wonderful Coordinator who is moving away );
Interested in getting involved in the newsletter? Email Leigh at

Community Park Weeding – Steve Preston
Come weed with us! Everyone is jealous of our entrance. Help us keep it that way.
Next Park Entrance Weeding:
Tuesday, 7/ 21 * DIFFERENT * Weeding has been moved back a week for weather and vacations *
6pm, Linwood & Baltimore
Feel free to bring children, drinks, food
Come weed with your neighbors and make new friends!

Pocket Park Clean Ups
We’ve been regularly cleaning up the pocket park at Potomac and Fayette. Please join us! Now that we’ve got it down, cleaning only takes 15 minutes and there are popsicles afterwards!
Next Park Clean Up:
Wednesday 7/22, 6:30
Corner of Potomac and Fayette
Come clean up the tiny park and eat delicious popsicles with community members!

Greening Update: Kim Wiggins / Terresa Carter
We’ve gotten a grant for rain barrels, if you already have signed up for a rain barrel talk to Kim about getting it installed. You can also email Kim if you want to be put on the rain barrel waitlist

Blue Water Baltimore is mulching tree pits- yay!
We’ve been doing awesome clean-ups so far in July, if YOU want an awesome clean up for YOUR block, come to a Greening Partnership mtg and we’ll help you put it together!
Email or come to a Greening Partnership Meeting- every 2nd Saturday at 11am. 

PSA: 311 app is a great way to get the city to pay attention to things and help us out with that sort of stuff

Patterson Park Green City Guide
Baltimore Community Foundation and Chesapeake Bay Trust have funded a guide for trash, rats, dumping, etc. Kim and Sadie are on the steering committee, along with many other great people. The guide is almost ready! We’ll have it on the website and Facebook page once it’s published.
Follow us on Facebook to receive all sorts of exciting updates!

Patterson Park Home and Garden Tour
The tour is moving back to Fall- it will be Sat, Sep 26, from 11-4 or 12-5, still deciding :)
To avoid asking participants to walk marathons, we will be divided future tours into East and West starting this year. 2015 Tour will be all houses East of Linwood, 2016 will be West of Linwood.
To get involved with planning or to make your house part of the tour email Kim at

Understanding the Juvenile Justice System and Youth Mental Health – Everett Smith
Everett is a therapist and faculty member at University of Maryland School of Social Work. He has worked with many young people in juvenile justice system.

Lots of people in the community think that juveniles just get a slap on the wrist when they’re picked up- not so! Here’s the deal:
Families he works with are often dealing with a lot of things at once.
They often consist of one adult managing multiple kids, are economically disadvantaged, black (not necessarily African American, sometimes Caribbean American, etc.)

What Happens When a Young Person is Arrested?
They are taken to Baltimore Juvenile Justice Center- 80% are sent on to the State’s Attorney’s Office, 20% they resolve it locally with the family, school, or whomever
Next business day- preliminary hearing, trying to figure out if it would be okay to release them back into the community until their court hearing.
Social science research says that the longer you keep youth in detention the more likely they are to re-offend. 
Release back to the community- doesn’t always mean back home; sometimes juveniles are sent to a supervised DJS setting with a gps locator, or they sleep at home and go to a monitoring center during the day.

IF they are found guilty, they might ‘just’ be given probation which often confounds community members, especially those who have been impacted by their crimes. Probation means that the juvenile takes a bunch of assessments and is assigned supports & services based on the results.

4k complaints (potential cases) are registered in a year in Baltimore City. There are 56k youth in the City of Baltimore
(a small portion of the youth are committing more than their share of the crimes) For the past 3 yrs, juvenile delinquency has been going down in Baltimore City.

For more info & for ways to get involved in community interventions, email Everett!

JHU Trash/Rat Team Update
Graduate students from the Hopkins School of Public Health have conducted interviews and a focus group in our neighborhood to learn about the rat problem & figure out possible solutions.
Michael, Pat and Chris perform a heartfelt dramatic reading of selections from rat interviews conducted by the students, a portion of which can be found online on the Patterson Park Neighbors Facebook page. THANK YOU to all who participated in the research!
For more of their findings, email Sadie at

Baltimore Retrofit – Paul Cole
Low & Moderate Income Homeowners can get FREE Energy Assessment from Baltimore Retrofit thanks a grant from the Maryland Energy Administration
Also available to renters, and you qualify based on the renters’ income! If you’re not low or moderate, you can still qualify for a subsidy so the whole assessment is only $100.
Please help get the word out! They’ll also be canvasing soon, so let your neighbors know that Baltimore Retrofit is not an energy scam 😛
Help save the earth and save yourself some money!

Baltimore Transit Survey – Delegate Brooke Lierman
Want your voice heard about transit in Baltimore? Express your opinions!!
Fill out this survey so Brooke can fight for what YOU want

PPNA/PPPCS Partnership Update – Leigh
We’re still working out a partnership with the Patterson Park Public Charter School! As part of this partnership, our August PPNA Meeting will be held at the school! We’ll be in the cafeteria, which is the Baltimore St entrance.

PPNA June 8 General Meeting Minutes

Sorry for the late post – here’s the minutes of the last PPNA Meeting, which featured a talk and Q&A with Mayor Stephanie Rawlings Blake.

Patterson Park Neighborhood Association

Monthly General Meeting
Monday, June 8th, 2015
St. Elizabeth of Hungary Church, Basement Multi-Purpose Room

2015 PPNA Board Introduction
Hi, we’re the board! Hello new people! Tell us your spirit animal.

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South Sector Cleanup – Saturday June 6

Join us this weekend to continue the great neighborhood cleanup efforts that have been going on this spring! This Saturday, June 6, we’ll have a dumpster available in the unit block of East Avenue, so please use it to clean up your alleys, yards and basements. We’ll post on the Patterson Park Neighbors Facebook group when the dumpster is delivered.

As part of the sector cleanup, we’ll be focusing on cleaning the long alley between Baltimore and Leverton/East and Highland. Join your neighbors at 9:00 am to help us with this area. We’ll have coffee and a quick bite to fuel up for the cleanup. As available, we’ll move onto other areas needing some community love. After the cleanup, it’ll be time for the Taste of Three Cities Food Truck Rally in Patterson Park!

Cleanup tool and trash bags will be provided for the Baltimore/Leverton cleanup. If any nearby neighbors have wheelbarrows to borrow, we’d be grateful. Also, any unit East block neighbors who could use their vehicles to hold a spot for the dumpster delivery Saturday morning, that’d be much appreciated. Contact

SouthSectorCleanup (flyer)