Our last Baltimore by Bike ride of the year offers a chance to see the city through the eyes of Baltimore’s own H.L. Mencken – one of the most influential American writers of the 20th century. H.L. Mencken grew up and spent most of his life in a handsome brick rowhouse on Union Square but he never hesitated to explore the city he loved (and loved to skewer) as he walked, reported, and even rode a bike through Baltimore neighborhoods from Mount Vernon to Bolton Hill and beyond.
Mencken’s Baltimore by Bike
Sunday, November 11, 9:30am to 12:00pm
Meet at Union Square Park, Hollins Street and South Stricker Street RSVP online today! $15 per person.
Join us for a easy fall ride through H.L. Mencken’s Baltimore. The eldest son of August Mencken, a successful local cigar manufacturer, Mencken grew from roaming the alleys and vacant lots with gangs of West Baltimore boys to become one of the youngest reporters at the Baltimore Herald, launching a career in journalism and writing that endured for nearly 50 years.
We’ll ride along the streets that Mencken knew best as we discover the site of Little Joe’s Bike Shop where Mencken learned to ride a bicycle in the 1890s, imagine the fine meals Mencken enjoyed with friends at Marconi’s on Cathedral Street, stop by F. Scott Fitzgerald’s home in Bolton Hill and stop by the Poe House, just around the corner from Mencken’s birthplace on Lexington Street. Our tour ends with a chance to tour the H.L. Mencken House and enjoy light refreshments.
Join us this fall for three more fun Baltimore by Bike tours – a War of 1812 ride this Saturday to celebrate Defender’s Day with local scholar Kate Drabinski, a tour of West Baltimore murals with Baltimore Heritage board member Dr. Ralph Brown, and a free tour of Jewish Landmarks in northwest Baltimore (part of our new Baltimore Jewish Landmarks Photo Competition). Most of our rides are comfortable for everyone from teens to retirees and offer a great way to explore Baltimore’s historic neighborhoods.
War of 1812 by Bike
Saturday, September 8, 3:30 pm to 6:00 pmRescheduled due to predicted thunderstorms! New date: Saturday, September 22, 9:30 am to 12:00 pm RSVP today!$10 per person.
Meet at Riverside Park, Riverside Avenue and East Randall Street. Note – the starting location has been moved from Fort McHenry to Riverside Park.
This year we are taking our Defender’s Day celebrations beyond Fort McHenry with an afternoon bike tour around the harbor exploring the lives and landmarks that witnessed how the War of 1812 came home to Baltimore 200 years ago.
West Baltimore Murals by Bike
Sunday, September 16, 9:00 am RSVP today! $10 per person.
Meet at the intersection of Frederick Avenue and the Gwynns Falls Bike Trail on the north side of Frederick Avenue – at 2800 Frederick Avenue.
With over a dozen murals decorating walls and bridges, West Baltimore comes alive in this tour that explores a rich part of our city that many rarely visit. Please join us to learn about some seminal events of the 19th century that occurred in West Baltimore and changed the course of world history.
Baltimore by Bike: Jewish Landmarks in Northwest Baltimore
Sunday, October 14, 10:00 am to 12:00 pm
Meeting location at Beth Am Synagogue, 2501 Eutaw Place, Baltimore, MD. RSVP Today! Free thanks to Free Fall Baltimore.
In the decades after the Civil War, Baltimore’s economy boomed, countless immigrants arrived from around the world and many – including the city’s growing Jewish community – moved northwest into the rapidly expanding Baltimore suburbs around what is now Bolton Hill. We’re taking a two-hour bike tour past historic synagogues and other Jewish landmarks from from Eutaw Place to Park Heights – all free thanks to Free Fall Baltimore.
Urban renewal shaped the landscape of Baltimore in tremendous ways during the 1950s and 1960s – fundamentally transforming historic neighborhoods from Mount Vernon to Bolton Hill. We’ll be riding and walking through this fascinating history with two great programs – a happy hour and a free walking tour around State Center on Friday, August 24 followed by a morning bike tour on Saturday, August 25 across nearly all of central Baltimore. Both our tour and happy hour are organized in partnership with Bikemore – Baltimore’s new bike advocacy organization.
Toasting State Center at Dougherty’s Pub
Friday, August 24, 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm Dougherty’s Pub, 223 West Chase Street Baltimore, MD 21201 Free State Center walking tour starts from Dougherty’s at 5:15pm
Our regular Preservationist Happy Hour is back in Mt. Vernon at Doughterty’s – a great neighborhood pub with fifteen beers on draft, seasonal specials, and happy hour beer specials. If you’re looking for something to eat, they have a classic bar menu with burgers, sandwiches and more. We’re also offering a preview of our Urban Renewal by Bike tour with a free 45-minute walking tour through State Center – a complex of government offices built from the 1950s through the 1970s and one of the city’s largest urban renewal projects.
Baltimore by Bike Takes on Urban Renewal
Saturday, August 25, 9:30 am to 12:00 pm RSVP today! $10 per person.
Meet at Mount Vernon Place in the west park between Charles and Cathedral Streets.
Ride along for a tour of the city’s best brutalist buildings, modern apartment towers, and more as we explore the history of post-WWII urban renewal efforts from Mount Vernon Place to State Center. Of course, even in the 1960s preservationists fought to preserve historic buildings, so we’ll also get to take a look at once-threatened landmarks from the Garrett-Jacobs Mansion to the Shot Tower.
Beginning Memorial Day weekend, we are launching a brand-new series of Baltimore by Bike tours to highlight historic places in Baltimore. We are especially pleased that Dr. Ralph Brown, pediatrician, history lover, and founder of Monumental Bike Tours, has come out of tour retirement to lead many of our rolling sojourns this year. Our first tour – The Monuments of Baltimore – is this Sunday, May 27 for an affordable $10 or check out our free tour of West Baltimore Parks on National Trails Day, Saturday, June 2.
The Monuments of Baltimore
Sunday, May 27, 9:00 am to 12:00 pm RSVP today!$10 per person.
Meet in front of the Lee-Jackson statute across the street from the main entrance to the Baltimore Museum of Art. The tour will return before noon.
What better way to get into the spirit of Memorial Day than by learning about Baltimore’s great historic monuments? Peddle between major and minor landmarks with a full dose of history along the way from Dr. Ralph Brown.
Explore West Baltimore Parks
Saturday, June 2, 10:00 am to 12:00 pm RSVP today!Free!
Meet at the Francis Scott Key Monument – Eutaw Place and Lanvale Street.
West Baltimore’s unique landscape of parks and gardens feature everything from a monument to Francis Scott Key to innovative bioswales for sustainable stormwater management. The best way to get to know these local treasures? Hop on your bike and join us for a free National Trails Day ride through West Baltimore parks! Together with our partner Bikemore (a new citywide bike advocacy group), we’ll take an easy two-hour ride visiting over 10 small parks and gardens across west and southwest Baltimore.
Find more upcoming bike tours, including East Baltimore Bakeries by Bike on Saturday June 16 and West Baltimore Murals by Bike on Sunday, September 16 on our new Baltimore by Bike page!