They call Patterson Park the "Best Back Yard in Baltimore" and that's an apt name because few of the rowhouses near this urban oasis in Southeast Baltimore have more than a small patch of concrete behind them.
But this 155-acre city park provides a lot more than your typical backyard. Here neighborhood residents and visitors find a lush, open space for playing, dog walking, sledding, fishing and picnicking plus Patterson Park's recreation facilities include a pool, two playgrounds, an ice skating rink, basketball and tennis courts, rec center and many ball fields.
Friends of Patterson Park:
But beyond its physical characteristics, Patterson Park provides a space for community connections, programming and festivals. The Friends of Patterson Park (FoPP), the organization that spearheaded much of the the park's renaissance in recent years, helps provide programming such as concerts and family activities. FoPP also organizes community members into maintenance teams that meet monthly to help care for the park. From May to October, the Friends also opens the Pagoda to visitors every Sunday from noon to 6 p.m.
FoPP advocates for the park with the city and provides assistance with maintenance and programming in the park.
In addition to the park's regular maintenance, Baltimore City Parks & Recreation oversees Patterson Park's festivals (usually held in the area near the Pulaski Monument) staffs the pool, recreation center and ice rinks, provides permits for picnic pavilions and events and administers its City Farm program, which allows city residents to rent a garden plot in the park.
Patterson Park Amenities:
- Ice skating rink
- Tennis courts
- Jogging track
- Utz Stadium playing field
- Athletic fields
- Basketball courts
- Two playgrounds
- Recreation center
- Small, stocked lake
- Festival grounds
- Two picnic pavilions
- Victorian pagoda and observation tower
- Landscaped public areas and gardens
- City Farms program - garden plot rental
Patterson Park Programming:
In addition to the Friends of Patterson Park, organizations like Audubon Maryland-DC provide ongoing programs in the park. While events and programs in Patterson Park do change from year to year, some of the annual ones include:
- Pagoda concert series
- Kinetic Sculpture Race
- Halloween Lantern Parade
- Latino Fest
- Polish Festival
- Bike Jam
- Moonlight Pagoda cocktail party
- Wine Tasting at the Marble Fountain
Patterson Park is between Eastern Avenue and East Baltimore Street with South Patterson Park Avenue to the west. South Linwood Avenue splits the main part of the park from Patterson Park East, which is bordered to the east by south Ellwood Avenue and to the north by East Pratt Street. Patterson Park East has a running track and athletic fields. See Map
The Pulaski Monument, site of most festivals in Patterson Park, is at the corner of Eastern and Linwood avenues. The Pagoda and Marble Fountain are near the intersection of Lombard and Patterson Park avenues.
The tennis courts, ice rink and pool are easily accessed from Linwood Avenue, where there is usually plentiful parking. The driving entrance to the park is along Baltimore Street at North Luzerne Avenue. Visitors are not permitted to drive or park in the park without a special permit issued by the parks department.