Educational Tours give attendees the opportunity explore not only Baltimore Main Streets districts, but Main Street Maryland communities as well. Check out the successful and innovative stories they have to share.
- Tours on Sunday, April 1
- Tours on Monday, April 2
- Tours on Tuesday, April 3
- Tours on Wednesday, April 4
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.: Finding A Way to Freedom: Explore the Stories, Sites, and Landscapes of Harriet Tubman
One of the nation's most courageous heroines, Harriet Tubman was born and grew up in Dorchester County, Maryland. It was from here that she escaped from slavery in 1894. And it was here she returned again and again to lead enslaved people to freedom through the Underground Railroad. Join us to explore a secret network of people, places, and routes that intertwine and intersect with Main Street communities and byways within a distinct Heritage Area. Tour participants will also explore the downtown of Cambridge Main Street.Bus and walking; BB01: Harriet Tubman on the registration form; $45.
10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.: Cultivating Main Street: Implementing Urban Agriculture in Baltimore
Visit Hamilton-Lauraville Main Street (HLMS) to see how an urban agricultural movement has “grown” to unite urban farmers with local businesses and HLMS’ Tuesday Market in Lauraville. Like a fast-growing vine, the Hamilton Crop Circle (HCC) has enveloped the community, helping to unite residents, students, and the commercial district through local farm-to-table practices. On this tour, you'll visit the Hamilton Elementary-Middle School, which has a large garden that services the school as well as many of the restaurants in the neighborhood. Visit a bee-keeper who provides honey to several restaurants, a bakery whose owners mill locally grown wheat on premises, and a nursing home that uses locally grown produce. you'll also have an opportunity to taste food at several restaurants and visit the HCC garden.Bus and walking; BB02: Urban Agriculture on the registration form; $40.
10:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.: Critical Mass – Sustaining a Great American Main Street
Reach and sustain critical mass in your downtown by learning how to create effective partnerships, capitalize on local assets, and develop strategies to overcome challenges. Presented by community leaders from Downtown Frederick, Md., this session will give your community practical knowledge to help you reach your goals. Downtown Frederick, a Great American Main Street, now boasts more than 200 independently owned retailers, several arts venues, more than 300 professional businesses, a strong residential community, a beautiful urban park/waterway, and much more. Join us for this tour to learn how success was attained and how the community continues to work to sustain vibrancy.Bus and walking; BB03: Frederick on the registration form; $40.
1:00 - 4:00 p.m.: Baltimore Main Streets Overview
When thinking about Baltimore, thoughts of Camden Yards, the word “Hon,” Olympian Michael Phelps, and the Inner Harbor come to mind, but we are also known for our ethnic and cultural neighborhoods with their unique stores and eateries. This session takes you on an overview of Baltimore Main Streets neighborhoods. Highlights include visits to Pigtown, a neighborhood whose name dates back to the 1800s when pigs were transported down Washington Boulevard from the B&O Railroad, and Fell’s Point which blends the cobblestone streets of a 1700s maritime community with funky shops as a destination district. The final stop on the tour is in Federal Hill, a 2009 Great American Main Street award winner. Participants can take the tour bus back to the hotel or linger in the neighborhood for some shopping! The free Charm City Circulator will take you right back to the hotel.Bus and walking; BB04: Baltimore Overview on the registration form; $35.
12:30 - 3:30 p.m.: Baltimore Main Streets Overview
When thinking about Baltimore, thoughts of Camden Yards, the word “Hon,” Olympian Michael Phelps, and the Inner Harbor come to mind, but we are also known for our ethnic and cultural neighborhoods with their unique stores and eateries. This session takes you on an overview of Baltimore Main Streets neighborhoods. Highlights include visits to Pigtown, a neighborhood whose name dates back to the 1800s when pigs were transported down Washington Boulevard from the B&O Railroad, and Fell’s Point which blends the cobblestone streets of a 1700s maritime community with funky shops as a destination district. The final stop on the tour is in Federal Hill, a 2009 Great American Main Street award winner. Participants can take the tour bus back to the hotel or linger in the neighborhood for some shopping! The free Charm City Circulator will take you right back to the hotel.Bus and walking; CC01: Baltimore Overview on the registration form; $35.
1:00 - 5:00 p.m.: Not Just for Buildings: Adopting Most Endangered Lists to Raise Community Awareness
Take a diverse tour of Howard county's endangered historic sites. Starting with the modern history of Columbia's Lakefront Promenade, you'll travel along the National Road to the Ellicott City Historic District and the Thomas Viaduct. While each site has its own unique challenges, facing the development pressures placed on a growing county is the recurring theme on this journey.Bus and walking; CC02: Most Endangered on the registration form; $35.
1:00-5:00 p.m.: The Frederick Wine Trail
Enjoy tastings at a selection of the wineries that make up Maryland's first wine trail, the Frederick Wine Trail. you'll stop at the state's first urban winery located in Historic Downtown Frederick and learn how the wineries in the surrounding countryside partner with downtown restaurants that focus on local food and drink. The Frederick Wine Trail grew out of a collaboration between participating local wineries and tourism and economic development offices, with the assistance of a state grant.Bus and walking; CC03: Frederick Wine on the registration form; $45.
1:15 - 3:15 p.m.: Looking Up Downtown: The Architecture and History of Baltimore's Central Business
Growing rapidly after the Civil War, Baltimore's historic central business district is full of wonderful architecture – both grand and small. It shows the scars of a horrendous fire in 1904, the influences of urban renewal projects, and the individual efforts of many Baltimoreans. And it's got loads of gargoyles, statuary, and grotesques peering down on unsuspecting pedestrians every day. This two-hour walking tour will feature the architecture, history, and whimsy of central downtown Baltimore.Walking; CC04: Looking Up Downtown on the registration form; $25
10:30 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.: Leveraging Investment and Creativity with Arts and Entertainment Districts
Tour three state-designated Arts and Entertainment Districts. You'll see the attractions and retail offerings in Bethesda, Silver Spring, and Gateway and learn their strategies for revitalization, tourism, and economic development. These three districts, all part of the Maryland Arts and Entertainment Districts program, will share success stories and lessons learned from the past decade as they grew their downtowns by rehabbing existing buildings, identifying anchor attractions, enticing complementary businesses, marketing and promoting events, and encouraging the arts and entertainment role in economic and community revitalization. Maryland is one of the first states in the nation to develop Arts and Entertainment Districts on a statewide basis to promote and support diverse artistic and cultural centers in communities that preserve a sense of place, provide unique local experiences, and spur economic revitalization and neighborhood pride.Bus and walking; DD01: Arts & Entertainment on the registration form; $40.
12:30 - 3:30 p.m.: NTCIC Tour of Historic Tax Credit Investments in Baltimore
Take this guided tour of the National Trust Community Investment Corporation's historic tax credit investments in Baltimore and learn how using tax credits on various types of projects and sites can transform an area. Gain insight on how to rehab historic properties with tax incentives to support economic development and create community benefits that meet the goals of local organizations and citywide plans. You'll tour the American Brewery Building, a long-time vacant brewhouse that now houses the nonprofit human services organization Humanim. You'll also stop at the Masonic Temple, the Professional Arts Building in Mt. Vernon, and the Hippodrome Theater, meeting key people involved in the projects along the way.Bus and walking; DD03: NTCIC Tax Credits on the registration form; $30.
1:00 - 4:00 p.m.: Community Gardens in Emerging Neighborhoods
Community gardens make cities more livable – and increase property values. How can these grassroots efforts bolster Main Street programs? Do they have a role in areas without a Main Street program? Join local land trust Baltimore Green Space in this bus and walking tour that will explore community gardens in Reservoir Hill, Waverly, and East Baltimore. Wear closed-toe shoes and clothing that can get dirty, as we will be pitching in at one of the gardens.Bus and walking; DD02: Community Gardens on the registration form; $35.
1:00 - 5:30 p.m.: The Beer of Baltimore Main Streets
Find out how craft beer bars and festivals can bring shoppers and tourists to your Main Street. We'll visit Baltimore's first microbrewer’s large-scale brewery, one Baltimore's first brew pubs, and one of the nation's largest beer bars. This tour has an age restriction of 21+ as there will be samples! There is no better segue to the Main Street Bash than this tour!Bus and walking; DD04: Beer of Baltimore on the registration form; $40.
10:15 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.: Station North: Where Arts and Entertainment Mean Business
Located in the heart of Baltimore, Station North was the first state-designated Arts and Entertainment District in Maryland. Spanning the communities of Charles North, Greenmount West and Barclay, Station North has a diverse collection of artist live-work spaces, galleries, row houses, and businesses. The tour will begin at Penn Station and visit some of the arts venues that make this such a vibrant neighborhood. Stops include the City Arts building, an apartment building where artists can live and showcase their work; the Charles Theater, a one-of-a-kind theater that features everything from specialty films to Hollywood movies; and the North Avenue Market, a repurposed public market where artists and entrepreneurs have developed eclectic arts and entertainment spaces. www.stationnorth.org.Bus and walking; EE02: Station North on the registration form; $25.
10:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.: Baltimore Heritage Walk
Discover four centuries of American history in and around the Inner Harbor. Follow trail markers and signs connecting 20 cultural heritage sites and museums. Discover the country's oldest big city train station. Stroll through charming Little Italy to the house where the Star-Spangled Banner was sewn. Next door, explore the East Coast's largest museum of African-American heritage. Travel Corned Beef Row to visit the nation's largest regional Jewish museum. On the way back to the Inner Harbor, experience the nation's very first museum building and the first war memorial honoring the common soldier.Walking; EE01: Heritage Walk on the registration form; $25.