Baltimore’s first park! In 1827, six acres of what is now known as the 134 acre Patterson Park, were donated by William Patterson to create a public walk. Patterson Park has a rich military history as an important site in the War of 1812 decisive battle of North Point, and was expanded as a Civil War Army Hospital and camp for Union soldiers (Camp Washburn). Following the Civil War, the park boundaries were again expanded on the recommendations of the Olmsted Brothers to result in the current footprint.
Today the park is Baltimore’s most intensively used large park and remains an outstanding example of 19th century park design. When you visit the park, some of the amenities you will find:
Patterson Park Pagoda
The Pagoda, originally known as the Observatory, was designed in 1890 by Charles H. Latrobe, then Superintendent of Parks. While known as the Pagoda because of its oriental architectural appearance, the design was intended to reflect the bold Victorian style of the day. From the top of the tower one can view downtown, Baltimore’s many neighborhoods, the Patapsco River, the Key Bridge and Fort McHenry. The Pagoda is operated, maintained and staffed by The Friends of Patterson Park and volunteers. The Pagoda is open 12 noon to 6 pm on Sundays from mid-April through mid-October. www.pattersonpark.com
The Patterson Park Boat Lake was created during grading operations in 1864 when extensive earth-moving work was performed to remove military emplacements and to fill ravines. When residents began using the lake as a skating pond in 1865, the Board of Public Park Commission authorized expansion of the lake to accommodate skating as well as boating. This work, completed in 1875, enlarged the Lake to its present size and included a brick retaining wall, an island, and plantings of trees and shrubs. Today, the Lake is a combination of open water and a wetland habitat for fish, waterfowl, and songbirds. The Boat Lake is enjoyed by many for fishing, wildlife viewing, and educational programming.
Patterson Park has two very accessible playgrounds that provide hours of fun for children of all ages (and parents too!).
Located inside the park near Linwood Avenue, this playground was completely renovated in 2000. It has swings, slides, and climbing apparatus for the kids, as well as shaded benches for the adults. If that isn’t enough there is also a water fountain for all to enjoy. Conveniently located near the pool, ice rink, and tennis courts, be sure to pop in for a little playtime on your next visit to Patterson Park.
Located inside the park near Eastern Avenue between Milton and Montford Avenues, this playground, constructed in 2005, pays homage to the Baltimore’s distinct architecture and landmarks – complete with rowhouse facades, a Bromo-Seltzer clock tower and a gazebo reminiscent of the Music Pavilion, one of Patterson Park’s lost landmarks. This playground is “Bawlmer”, Hon.
Ice Skating Rink
Dominic “Mimi” DiPietro Family Skating Center, located at 200 S. Linwood Avenue, is a popular center of activity for cold weather activities. The rink features public ice skating sessions, ice hockey, broomball, and sled hockey from October until March 30, 2013. The rink also hosts many of Baltimore’s hockey teams, as well as seasonal special events. www.bcrp.baltimorecity.gov
The Patterson Park Swimming Pool is located at 148 S. Linwood Ave. The newly renovated Patterson Park Pool will be open on weekends Memorial Day weekend until June 19 . From June 20th – August 20th, the pool will be open seven days a week and will close for the season September 4. Patterson Park also offers a toddler area, lap swim, aqua Zumba, swim lessons and more!
For more information please call the Patterson Park Pool at 410-396-8975 or Baltimore City Recreation and Parks Aquatics Division at 410-396-3838.
Virginia Baker Recreation Center
The Virginia S. Baker Recreation Center is a hub of activity with a year-round schedule of programs. The Recreation Center is located inside the park at 2601 E. Baltimore Street (near Luzerne and Baltimore). The center includes a large multi-purpose room, gymnasium, game room, meeting room, kitchen, and computer lab. Activities have included Salsa classes, Yoga, Volleyball, Karate, Zumba, Cooking classes, Youth Basketball, Pinata making and much more. Please call 410-396-9156 or visit www.bcrp.baltimorecity.gov/recreationcenters for more information on a current schedule of activities.
Athletic Fields, Tennis Courts & Basketball Courts
Patterson Park has five basketball courts, ten tennis courts and a variety of baseball, softball, football/soccer fields, including the Utz Twardowicz synthetic turf field. For reservation information, call Recreation and Parks Permits Office, 410-396-7070
We love our four-legged visitors too! Go to www.pattersondogpark.org for additional information.
Audubon Wildlife Habitat Meadow
Over 200 species of birds visit Patterson Park annually! Learn about our natural visitors by spending time in the meadow or joining one of the Audubon Society’s scheduled bird walks in the park. pattersonpark.audubon.org/urban-bird-walks
Spend the day
A delicious array of restaurants are available on the perimeter of the park or visit Canton Square’s famous bars and restaurants, a short six block walk south on Linwood Avenue. There’s a dog park there too! www.cantoncommunity.org