Sprawling urban development represents an increasing, major threat to native wildlife and water quality. That’s why people in developed areas have both an enormous responsibility and a unique opportunity to protect biodiversity and watershed health where they live, work, and learn. The National Wildlife Federation and our partners, along with Baltimore residents, are seizing this opportunity to help Baltimore’s wildlife by increasing green space in the city and planting wildlife-friendly gardens, all of which also help to address community priorities such as mitigating nuisance flooding, improving water quality, and beautifying neighborhoods.
To that end, we have planted pollinator gardens, rain gardens, and other polluted runoff best management practices at a variety of spaces including schools, vacant lots, and houses of worship. We’ve also provided training and resources to community members and teachers to maintain these practices and recreate them in their own backyards.
Taking place May 3-11, Baltimore Wildlife Week is bringing more attention to the importance of urban conservation, highlighting the positive impact that collective community actions have for Baltimore City and its residents, waterways, and wildlife.
FRIDAY, MAY 3
Wildlife Week Costume Party | Meadworks Taproom | 400 E Biddle St., Baltimore, MD 21202
5 – 10 pm
Join us to kick off Wildlife Week in style with a dance party at the Meadworks Taproom. There will be a DJ, dancing, mead, and even a guest appearance from Ranger Rick. There will be opportunities to win prizes through a raffle and costume contest. Charm City Meadworks will generously be donating part of the weekend’s proceeds to urban conservation.
SATURDAY, MAY 4
Art Opening/Urban Wilderness Day | Meadworks Taproom | 400 E Biddle St., Baltimore, MD 21202
1 – 5 pm (Outdoor Market); 5 – 6 pm (Native Plant Trivia); 7 – 9:30 pm (Project Bridge Gong Show)
Charm City Meadworks is hosting a full day of events centered around urban conservation. The day will begin with an environmentally-themed art show that will be curated by local artists. There will also be an outdoor market showcasing local food, local artists, and local conservation organizations looking for an opportunity to connect with residents about the work being done in Baltimore City.
In the afternoon, the Taproom will be hosting Native Plant Identification Trivia, hosted by the experts at Blue Water Baltimore. The trivia will be a fun way to educate ourselves about the many native plant species that you can plant at your homes and in your communities to support wildlife.
The night will end with a “Gong Show” hosted by Project Bridge. Scientists working on urban conservation will present their research to the general public. Luckily for us, if they mention anything that we don’t understand, the audience can ring their gongs until the presenter puts the research into more layman terms. This presentation helps bridge the gap between scientists and the general public.
SUNDAY, MAY 5
Family Fun Day | Meadworks Taproom | 400 E Biddle St., Baltimore, MD 21202
10 – 11:30 am (Nature Walk); 11:30 – 3:30 p.m. (Bird/Bat Box Assembly)
Bring your friends and family out to the Taproom for the final day of opening weekend. We’ll kick off the morning with a nature walk around the Jones Falls led by Blue Water Baltimore. In the afternoon, we will return to the Taproom to build bird and bat boxes with our friends at Open Works.
More information about events will be added as Baltimore Wildlife Week gets closer. Keep checking back for updates.
SATURDAY, MAY 4
Spring Fling Festival | Amazing Grace Lutheran Church | 2424 McElderry St., Baltimore, MD 21205
11 am – 3 pm
Join community members and local organizations as we celebrate all the good things happening in McElderry Park and East Baltimore! The 6th annual Spring Fling festival is hosted by Charm City Land Trusts and Amazing Grace Lutheran Church. There will be games, crafts, resource tables, a garden tour, planting opportunities, food, music, and more. The festival will take place in the Amazing Port Street Commons, a Community Land Trust that has been stewarded by residents for nearly 20 years.
Contact: Natalie Cohen
WEDNESDAY, MAY 8
Justice and Environment: Community Forum | Whitelock Community Farm | 930 Whitelock St., Baltimore, MD 21217
5 – 6 pm (Volunteer Hour); 6 – 6:30 (Dinner on the farm); 6:30 – 8:00 (Speakers and Discussion)
We invite residents of all backgrounds to join us at Whitelock Community Farm in the Reservoir Hills neighborhood for a panel-style forum that will focus on important issues in the community such as land access, fair economic development, food equity, and public health. The event will kick off with an optional volunteer hour to support the farm. This forum will be a medium for open discussion and will give us all a chance to spend an evening outside with good friends and complimentary food.
Rain Date: Wednesday, May 15
THURSDAY, MAY 9
Community Night at Gertrude’s Chesapeake Kitchen | 10 Art Museum Dr., Baltimore, MD 21218
5 – 9 pm
For over 20 years, Gertrude’s Chesapeake Kitchen has served as a prominent voice for the use of local, fresh ingredients that are native to our unique Chesapeake Bay region. As supporters of wildlife and urban conservation, Gertrude’s will be donating up to 20% of all proceeds to the National Wildlife Federation for Baltimore Wildlife Week. Come out and join us in their beautiful restaurant located in the Baltimore Museum of Art.
Contact: Reservations | 410-889-3399
SATURDAY, MAY 11
B’More Wild Fest & GreenScape | Middle Branch Park
11 am – 3 pm
In conjunction with the Baltimore Office of Sustainability, the National Wildlife Federation is hosting a family-friendly free festival along the water at Middle Branch Park. There will be a DJ, free food, and many environmental organizations present to hang out and coordinate activities for kids. The Middle Branch staff will be coordinating trips along the Gwynns Falls bike trails, as well as allowing interested festival-goers a chance to canoe out onto the water. This is a fun event for all ages.
Thank you to all our partners participating in and supporting Baltimore Wildlife Week.
Amazing Grace Lutheran Church
Baltimore City Recreation and Parks
Baltimore Office of Sustainability
Blue Water Baltimore
Carrie Murray Nature Center
Charm City Meadworks
Greater Baltimore Wilderness Coalition
Lights Out Baltimore
Maryland Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education
Maryland Department of Natural Resources
Parks & People Foundation
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Chesapeake Bay Field Office
Whitelock Community Farm
For more information on partnership opportunities or to add your event to the list above, contact Justin Shapiro at ShapiroJ@nwf.org.
The National Wildlife Federation works year-round in partnership with Baltimore residents to improve the quality of the city by creating backyard sanctuaries, beautifying neighborhoods and schools, reducing pollution, and furthering a sense of community. This community-based approach involves participation from Baltimore residents in their schools, neighborhoods, and the city itself.
Schools: Baltimore City schools have an incredible opportunity to make a difference for their students, and wildlife. The National Wildlife Federation’s Schoolyard Habitats® program creates outdoor classrooms that raise enthusiasm for learning, attract parent volunteers, and become a source of pride for students, faculty, and principals. We are currently working with 10 schools in the Gwynns Falls watershed, in south and west Baltimore, to create wildlife habitat and reduce stormwater pollution flowing into the Chesapeake Bay.
Neighborhoods: Baltimore is a city of neighborhoods. Our long-range action plan protects and restores the biodiversity of Baltimore, decreases polluted water, and addresses pollinator decline and invasive plant species by teaching Baltimore City residents how to beautify their neighborhoods by gardening for wildlife.
City: The National Wildlife Federation collaborated with the Baltimore Orioles and the Maryland Stadium Authority to design and install the Oriole Garden at Camden Yards, a showplace demonstration garden that provides habitat for orioles, other local birds, and butterflies. Home of the beloved Baltimore Orioles, there’s no better place than Oriole Park at Camden Yards to educate and inspire fans to grow together.
All new gardens in Baltimore will count toward our goal of creating the largest National Wildlife Federation Community Wildlife Habitat® along the Chesapeake Bay. To learn more and certify a garden, please visit our Certification page.
The National Wildlife Federation believes our work is only possible through collaboration. Our incredible partners in Baltimore include Audubon Maryland-DC, Baltimore City Department of Recreation and Parks, Baltimore City Schools, Baltimore Office of Sustainability, Baltimore Orchard Project, Blue Water Baltimore, Greater Baltimore Children and Nature Collaborative, Maryland Institute College of Art, National Aquarium, Parks and People Foundation, and Reservoir Hill Improvement Council.
You don't have to travel far to join us for an event. Attend an upcoming event with one of our regional centers.