Charm in Quirky: Baltimore Neighborhoods Are Lit Up for Light City

Sydnee Logan
By Sydnee Logan  | 
Charm in Quirky: Baltimore Neighborhoods Are Lit Up for Light City

This April (April 6 – April 22) Baltimore’s is hosting its 3rd annual Light City, a free, family friendly festival that celebrates light, music and innovation. Pursuing a graduate degree in nursing is hard work. What’s more, many students at Johns Hopkins School of Nursing are reaching milestones in their personal lives—raising children and planning weddings. If you’re starting to feel overwhelmed, Light City is a great way for friends or the whole family to take a break, get out, and get to know Baltimore.

Here’s a video about the festival:










The attractions include bright, glowing see-saws and lit-up interactive sculptures, as well as performances, concerts, and some of Baltimore’s signature food vendors.  This year is a little different because the organizers expanded “Neighborhood Lights” (a collection of satellite light installations in Baltimore neighborhoods) from 8 installations to 12. They are designed by Baltimore artists and are intended to spread the energy of Light City throughout the city. Going to find the attractions is a great opportunity for Baltimore newbies to explore neighborhoods they don’t know much about. So here are some Neighborhood Lights installations you can visit, and a little bit of history about the neighborhoods.

Waverly, Rise & Shine Waverly, by The Rise of Charm City

Waverly Main St. Offices (old Boulevard Theater)
3302-B Greenmount Ave, Baltimore, MD 21218

You may not have heard of Waverly, but it’s the neighborhood where you’ll find Johns Hopkins Eastern Campus. Waverly was once home to Memorial Stadium, but it closed in the late 1990s, which caused Waverly Main Street—the historic commercial district on Greenmount Avenue—to suffer. But Waverly’s dedicated residents, local nonprofits, and neighboring institutions like Johns Hopkins are driving efforts to revitalize the neighborhood. In 2013, Waverly Main Street was designated on the National Register of Historic Places, and in the next year there will be extensive neighborhood beautification and development projects.

Highlandtown, Breaking Bread, by K.Lechleiter Architect, LED-BETTER Studio and BE|THE|TO
25 S. Conkling St., Baltimore MD 21224

You may or may not have heard of Highlandtown—it’s on the other side of Patterson Park. When the neighborhood was founded in 1866 it was known as “Snake Hill” and then became “Highland Town” in 1870 because neighborhood residents admired the view of Baltimore. Today Highlandtown is a diverse neighborhood with international markets and ethnic restaurants. It’s also home to the city’s largest Arts and Entertainment District.

Patterson Park, Breaking Bread, by Pablo Machioli and Owen Silverman Andrews
158 N. Linwood Ave., Baltimore, MD 21224

You’ve definitely heard of Patterson Park—it’s within walking distance from the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing. You may not know that Patterson Park was one of many Baltimore neighborhoods in decline in the 1980s and 90s. Neighborhood residents—including several members of the Johns Hopkins community—invested in Patterson Park to build it into the thriving community there today.

Here’s a list of all of the neighborhoods included in Light City this year with descriptions.

  • Baybrook (Brooklyn and Curtis Bay)
  • Belair-Edison
  • Bromo Tower Arts & Entertainment District
  • Darley Park
  • Federal Hill
  • Hamilton-Lauraville
  • Highlandtown
  • Hollins Roundhouse/Southwest Baltimore
  • Little Italy
  • Locust Point
  • Patterson Park
  • Pigtown
  • Remington
  • Waverly

There’s also an interactive map of the light installations. 



Sydnee Logan is the Social Media and Digital Content Coordinator for Johns Hopkins School of Nursing. She shares what’s going on here with the world.

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