Baltimore has always been a hot destination but this summer and fall the city is sizzling with festivals, celebrations and events that you won't find anywhere else. In fact, visit over the next several months and you're sure to find yourself in the midst of the totally unique only-in-Baltimore experiences that will keep you coming back for more.
Kick off your summer in Baltimore at the Camden Yards sports complex June 18 - 20 for the African American Heritage Festival Baltimore's annual celebration of African American culture, history and heritage. Nearly 100,000 revelers will enjoy three days of nationally-renowned entertainment, food, art, children's activities and community, showcasing the history, spirit and strength of Baltimore's African American community. It's one of the largest celebrations of its kind in the United States.
The African American Heritage Festival is just one of nine international festivals taking place this season. Throughout the summer months and into the fall, Baltimore's Showcase of Nations Ethnic Festivals highlight the diverse populations that call Baltimore home, from the Polish and Greek communities that helped build this city to the Latino and Caribbean communities that thrive here today. Unique entertainment, cuisines and cultures abound.
Once you experience Baltimore's 4th of July Celebration, you just may want to make it an annual event. Celebrate our nation's birthday in Baltimore's famous Inner Harbor where the night sky comes alive with the rockets' red glare and bombs bursting in air! Enjoy live music, street performers and abundant family fun, leading up to a dazzling fireworks display choreographed to your patriotic favorites.
Experience it just once and Artscape, the nation's largest public art festival, is bound to become one of your favorites. More than 150 artists, designers, craftspeople, musicians and performing artists bring their unbridled creativity and spirit to Baltimore's Mt. Royal Avenue from July 16 - 18. This massive festival boasts exciting and diverse national recording artists and an unparalleled array of visual artists, vendors and activities for the entire family. You do not want to miss this!
And speaking of don't miss, join the living historians at Baltimore's Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine as they bring to life the Battle of Baltimore, wherein an outnumbered militia of Baltimoreans kept a young America safe from encroaching British naval invaders during the War of 1812, inspiring local attorney Francis Scott Key to pen the lyrics of our national anthem. Experience the bombs bursting in air for yourself during this commemoration of Defender's Day, September 10 - 12, with encampment at the fort by living historians, educational reenactments and a stunning fireworks display accompanied by live music.
But we're not just good looking. Home of Edgar Allan Poe, H.L. Mencken and Gertrude Stein among others, Baltimore has some major literary cred. In the spirit of our erudite heritage, the Baltimore Book Festival, settles into Mount Vernon Place September 24 - 26 with signings, readings and appearances by more than 100 local, national and celebrity authors as well as children's activities, vendors and a scholarly good time.
After all of this adventuring, we're pretty sure you've worked up an appetite. Lucky you! This August, sample the best of Baltimore's restaurant community with Baltimore's Summer Restaurant Week, August 13-22, 2010. This bi-annual celebration of the most aromatic, the most mouth-watering, the most delicious flavors the city has to offer features more than 100 local restaurants offering prix fixe two-course lunch and three-course dinner deals at special values. We recommend reservations and with so many amazing culinary opportunities, you have our permission to eat dinner twice tonight.
But if two dinners lead to two desserts, stick around and register for the 2010 Under Armour Baltimore Running Festival. Featuring the 10th anniversary of one of the fastest-growing marathons in America, the Baltimore Running Festival takes place on Saturday, October 16, and features an event for everyone, from the Kids' Fun Run to the 5K, relay, half-marathon or the big one. No matter your fitness level, come to Baltimore and get moving, or just cheer on the thousands of participants as they take to the streets!
After you've stretched your quads, expand your horizons with Free Fall Baltimore, a month-long opportunity to experience the finest in visual and performing arts throughout Baltimore for exactly zero dollars and no cents. Throughout October, from complimentary admission into the city's finest arts institutions to absolutely free performances by local instrumental, choral and theater groups, there are literally hundreds of opportunities for kids, adults and families to become better acquainted with Baltimore's arts communities.
All of these only-in-Baltimore experiences are available to visitors in addition to the myriad events, attractions and adventures that this city offers 365 days a year.
Plan your trip!
- In Full Glory Reflected: Maryland during the War of 1812 June 10, 2012 - December 31, 2014 | All Day
- Civil War Trains Exhibit August 16, 2012 - December 31, 2015 | All Day
- CAA Men's Basketball Championship March 7, 2014 - March 10, 2014 | 7:00pm - 9:00pm
- Target America: Opening Eyes to the Damage Drugs Cause February 11, 2014 - September 1, 2014 | 10:00am - 5:00pm
- Divided Voices: Maryland in the Civil War April 16, 2011 - December 31, 2015 | All Day