Archive for 2012|Yearly archive page

The Best Outlet For Creative Expression in Baltimore

In strictlybaltimore on December 12, 2012 at 10:37 am


Creative Alliance

If you’re a known artist or up-and-coming you already know about the Creative Alliance. The Creative Alliance is a non-profit organization who presents and promotes all genres of art in Baltimore.

Located in Fells Point at the corner of Patterson Park, on 3134 Eastern Avenue, their building can be seen by their flashing lights and marquis.

Since 1995, they have been a positive force of creative and cultural expression in the city. If you have a voice, they want to hear it. If you have an instrument, they want you to play it. If you have a work of art, they want to help you showcase it. If you have a dance, they want to groove to it. If there’s a poem, they want to snap to it.

Creative Alliance hosts hundreds of programs, performances, screenings, and workshops for people to attend. Most are open to the public but some are exclusive to members.

Becoming a member costs as little as $40, but $25 if you’re a student with valid ID.

Creative Alliance hosts hundreds of events a year that are always looking for volunteers for support. If you want to help elevate the creativity of this city, you may want to consider joining.

As well as hosting, the Creative Alliance also hubs a number of group meetings in their space as well. For instance, the Baltimore Songwriter’s Association meets up in the Creative Alliance building during their bi-weekly meetings. If you’re looking for a high traffic and high quality site to rent for an event, you can book your next event at the Creative Alliance building.

Also you can rent their premium quality media equipment to make your next movie into a blockbuster.

If you want to get involved, you can start small by attending a few of their programs and then work your way up to being a full-fledged member. You can always support the arts by donating to the organization as well. Creative Alliance also offers a residency program for artists looking to cultivate their talent.

Where do you express your creativity?

Let us know!

Strictly Baltimore
Facebook | Twitter

Subscribe to our newsletter for more.


Building Relationships and Healthy Habits – The Y

In strictlybaltimore on December 11, 2012 at 10:27 am


Healthy Living and Relationships at The Y

If you set inside a Y facility you will see what they do and if you attend an event or program you can see why their necessary for a community. The Y is community based gym facility that hosts events and programs to enrich and cultivate the community.

The YMCA stands for the Young Men’s Christian Association but has evolved in to “the Y” due to its outreach to everyone. The organization was founded by George Williams in 1844 in London. It was built as a place of refuge for the young men from the harsh city life at the time.

Now over 160 years later the Y is still around but has now become an important part of the community it serves. Once a Y is established in a community, they become a vital part of a community’s growth through their activities and programs. With the help of the Y, people can realize their potential in volatile communities by becoming a safe drug free environment.

But there are more to just the Y then its facilities. Here are just a few more reasons why you should volunteer or join.

  • You become part of a community – By becoming part of the Y you build relationships with people in your community and become part of the overall good in the community.
  • You can become a mentor in a child’s life – Thousands of at-risk youth are being helped by the Y. Through the help of families and volunteers it is possible to give a child a future.
  • Get in shape – Becoming a member gives you access to gym facilities and access to a variety of exercise programs such as Zumba, yoga, and martial arts.
  • Gets kids off the streets – The Y’s engaging after school programs fosters learning and exercise which gives the ma healthy outlet as they get older.

You can be a part of your Y by becoming a member or volunteering. Find the one nearest you and if there is none, you can always donate.

Have you been to your Y?

Also don’t forget to check out our website to see what is going on in Baltimore

Subscribe to our newsletter for more.


Missing Lyrics and Melodies – A Community Helping to Cure Your Writer’s Block

In strictlybaltimore on December 10, 2012 at 10:40 am


The Cure For the Writer’s Block?

Do you have writer’s block or constructed a great instrumental but no lyrics to compliment them? The Baltimore Songwriter’s Association is here to offer ideas on how to create the song you envisioned.

The way the group has structured the event, it is a safe environment to share your piece. Each person comes in with the mindset of asking questions to understand your thought process then create feedback to help with conveying your message properly. Not only do they offer in-depth critiques of your work but also gives people creative exercises and activities to help people from writer’s block. They only ask that you come in with an open mind and with an understanding that everyone is there to help each other.

Songwriter’s of all levels meet up on the 2nd and 4th Monday of the month to get together to go over each other’s work and offer support. They meet at 3134 Eastern Avenuethe Creative Alliance Building @ 7:30 PM. The meetings are free and open to the public but must be a member to offer a song. To become a member costs $25 and can be paid online.

If you are looking to make that next step in becoming a better songwriter, come to their bi-event. The next one is tonight. If you are free come down and check it out.

How do you get over your writer’s block?

Let us know!

Like us on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter

Also don’t forget to check out our website to see what is going on in Baltimore

Subscribe to our newsletter for more.

Miracle at 34th St – 5 Reasons Why You Should Go to Hampden

In strictlybaltimore on December 7, 2012 at 9:08 am
English: Photo of the Christmas lights on 34th...

English: Photo of the Christmas lights on 34th Street in Hampden (Baltimore, Maryland). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Looking for the Christmas Spirit?

If you think that the Holiday Spirit is all gone then go to Hampden to prove you wrong. You may not be in the Christmas mood and no one can blame you. Cards to send, gifts to buy, every year it becomes easier to lose sight of what Christmas and the holiday season is all about.
But down in Hampden that is not the case.
On one block in Baltimore, the meaning of the holiday season is not lost. Come down to the 700 block of 34th St, between Chestnut St. and Keswick Rd. to see a glimpse of Santa’s North Pole. For the past few weeks until the end of the year, this block will be filled with lights and spirit for all to see.
Why you should see the Miracle in 34th St?
  • Gets you in the Christmas spirit. For some people it takes the weather to get into the spirit of Christmas, particularly snow. But since that hasn’t happened yet and with the weather being as unpredictable as it has been, the lights and decor should get your spirits up to last you until the rest of the holiday season.
  • It’s a local tradition. Baltimore’s Miracle at 34th St. has been ongoing since 1947. Now in their 65th year anniversary, it is truly a Baltimore gem and treasure.
  • Cheap date. Grab some hot chocolate or coffee from the cafe up the street and walk over to the lights show. With a block full of exhibits and conversation starters you can keep the date flow going effortlessly. Have you eve seen a hubcap Christmas tree?
  • Supporting local businesses. Have a drink or check out their trendy thrift shops while your there. Hampden is known for their local shops. Any store door you walk into will help the community out.
  • It’s free. While you may be strapped for cash after you bought all your gifts for your friends and family, you can go to this event free of charge and you can bring as many people as you want.

City sidewalks dressed in holiday style, get the feeling of Christmas time in Hampden.

How do you get into the Holiday Spirit?

Let us know!

Like us on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter

Also don’t forget to check out our website to see what is going on in Baltimore

Subscribe to our newsletter for more.


Stories That Move You

In strictlybaltimore on December 5, 2012 at 9:40 am


A Celebration of Books, Reading, and Urban Dance

This Saturday, December 8 from 9:30 – 12 PM @ Patterson Park Public Charter School, The Baltimore Dance Crews Project is partnering up with Reading Partners to host “Stories That Move You.”

Baltimore Dance Crews Project and Reading Partners created this event out of their same desire to help youth reach their full potential, BDCP through dance and Reading Partners through reading skills.

The event is two programs in one. The first half is a reading hour and the second half is a dance workshop.

The program is free but monetary and elementary-level book donations are highly encouraged.

If you would just like to help, volunteers are needed ASAP. If you are interested, contact BDCP in the information below.

Patterson Park Public Charter School
27 N. Lakewood Ave
Gymnasium entrance on Baltimore Street

9:30 Sign In Opens
9:50 Welcome by Reading Partners
10:00 Reading Hour
11-12 Workshop
Donation of an elementary school level book
orFREE EVENT / Pay What You Can
$3 suggested for K-12 students
$5 suggested for adults
More always welcome

Proceeds support BDCP End of the Year Community Show


Reading Hour Volunteers

  • Reading Buddies
  • Station Leaders
  • Chaperones
Dance Hour Volunteers

  • Dance Buddies
Please contact Brian Gerardo ASAP at 410-419-1562 or

Reading Hour VolunteersReading Buddies

  • Support students by reading aloud and asking questions
  • Book is appropriate for K-4 grade levels

Station Leaders

  • Three stations will be conducted after the reading to help students explore themes and comprehension
    • Station 1 – help students act out a scene from the story
    • Station 2 – help students write an alternative ending to the story
    • Station 3 – help students draw a scene from the story to show understanding
  • Each station is 10 minutes long (yes quick). Students rotate to all three.  Total of 30 minutes 


  • Help with transitions between activities 
  • Help station leaders with prepping and resetting stations
  • Serve as reading buddies if needed

Workshop Volunteers

Dance Buddies

  • Pair up with students to help through dance activities

A free dance workshop and a chance for you to spark a child’s imagination!

Also don’t forget to check out our website to see what is going on in Baltimore.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Subscribe to our newsletter for more.


Finding a Plant in a Concrete Jungle

In strictlybaltimore on December 4, 2012 at 9:45 am


Baltimore Green Space

In this concrete jungle it is rare that you see plants and vegetables growing in your neighborhood.

But with Baltimore Green Space they are looking to change that one neighborhood at a time.

Baltimore Green Space, a nonprofit land trust, preserves and supports community gardens and community-managed open spaces. Founded in 2007 they have expanded to three locations, one in Upper Fells Point, Duncan Street, and Pigtown.

Community-managed gardens and open spaces contribute positive effects to the community. An empty abandoned lot will transform an eye sore in to one of the prides of the community. Which will also increase the property value of your house.

While the Baltimore Green Space assists with protecting and preserving the community lot, it is up to the community to nurture and maintained. This is done through a community partner to maintain the quality of the green space which bond the community together.

They are always looking for assistance and locations to expand. If you have or know of an open space in your area that you would like to preserve please let them know. You can also volunteer your time or donate to the land trust.

When was the last time you watered a plant or stopped to smell a rose?

Also don’t forget to check out our website to see what is going on in Baltimore.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Subscribe to our newsletter for more.


Find Inspiration in the Past

In strictlybaltimore on December 3, 2012 at 9:08 am

Walters Art Museum

Walters Art Museum

Discover the Walters Art Museum

It’s easy to overlook something that has been a free source to the public but the Walters Art Museum should not be one of them. Baltimore’s art museum is in the heart of Mt. Vernon and free to the public.

Walk like an Egyptian in ancient Egypt. Learn from a scholar in ancient Greece. Find your knight in shining armor. With hundreds of arts spanning the centuries, from different cultures and places around the world, the Walters Art Museum has something that can appeal to everyone.

Imagine what life was like before electricity. Fascinating sculptures and paintings from different eras bring us glimpse of their culture and world. Learn from the geniuses of their era living in a land before the internet, laptops, or phones.

The Walters Art Museum wants you to do more than just admire the works of art from the past. With weekly events from classical music recitals to luncheon debates the Walters Art Museum aims for people to engage in the experience. Indulge yourself and attend one of the Walters Art Museum’s many events.

Hopefully the experience you gain from the gallery can inspire you to do something, art related or not.

What Will You Discover?

Also don’t forget to check out our website to see what is going on in Baltimore

Subscribe to our newsletter for more.


Santa’s Tugboat Arrival

In strictlybaltimore on November 30, 2012 at 9:29 am

Santa Claus

Santa‘s Toot-Toot in Fells Point

Looking for something to do this weekend?

Want to get into the Christmas spirit?

Then come down to Fell’s Point for their 9th Annual Olde Tyme Christmas for a whole weekend of festivities.

This weekend marks the holiday season in Fells Point and marks the start of the Christmas Market, the one stop shop for all your holiday arts, crafts, and favors.

Some key events happening tonight are horse sleigh rides, Christmas music by Mix 106.5, holiday beer and wine tastings, and an address from Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake.

And what better way to celebrate the 1st of December than with Santa’s arrival on a tugboat! Saturday is also sung with live Christmas Caroling and music with Santa’s arrival, gingerbread house making, Christmas Tree lighting, pub crawls, and more.Sunday ends with pet costume contests, wine and beer tastings, and studio dance and art.

The event is free and proceeds from the Olde Tyme Christmas will go to the Baltimore City Police Explorers Program, a police youth mentor program. The program exposes thousands of Baltimore youth to anti-crime and pro-education messages.

Check out Olde Tyme Christmas for details of each event. Also look at Santa’s entrance last year.

Also don’t forget to check out our website to see what is going on in Baltimore

Subscribe to our newsletter for more.

Helping Kids Get The Right Play

In strictlybaltimore on November 29, 2012 at 9:11 am

Playworks Volunteer Training Tonight!

WANTED: Enthusiastic high school students and adults looking to help their local elementary and middle schools with organized games.

Playworks is a non-profit organization that strives to improve the health and well-being of children by increasing opportunities for physical activity and safe, meaningful play. Playworks needs volunteers to help Playworks coaches facilitate safe and healthy play and physical activities to low-income schools.

Tonight, November 29, from 6 – 8 PM at Waverly Elementary / Middle School, there will be Playworks Volunteer Training. During this training, volunteers will learn more about Playworks, play games that will help students focus more on their school work, and discover how much of an impact they can be in a child’s life and in the community by becoming a volunteer. Dinner will also be provided.

Most high schools need volunteer hours to graduate. The “volunteer” work done can count towards those required hours. Also the volunteer service that is done will look great on their college application.

If you can not make it to the volunteer training tonight, learn more from their website and apply online.

WHO: Playworks Volunteer Training
Waverly Elementary/Middle School, 3400 Ellerslie Ave Baltimore, MD 21218
11/29, 6 – 8 PM
WHAT: Learn more about Playworks. Discover new ways of volunteering through Play. Dinner will be provided. High school students and adults welcome. 

Also don’t forget to check out our website to see what is going on in Baltimore

Subscribe to our newsletter for more.


Support Your Community Today – #GivingTuesday

In strictlybaltimore on November 27, 2012 at 9:35 am

11/27 – #GivingTuesday. Day to donate online to support the local United Way of Central Maryland. All proceeds stay local.

Help Your Community Shine

On November 27, United Way of Central Maryland and many of its local funded partners will join #Giving Tuesday™–a national effort that will launch the giving season and that is transforming philanthropy into something easy, achievable and trendy.

We all know about Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and how those two days continue to grow every year. For the first time this year, more than 400 nonprofits across the nation are committed to making #Giving Tuesday as big for charitable organizations as its older siblings–Black Friday and Cyber Monday–are for retail.

For years, shoppers have crowded stores on Black Friday, the first day of the holiday shopping season. More recently, Cyber Monday became the nation’s biggest online shopping day.

This year, for the first time, charities have put their stake in the ground to create a new tradition that celebrates giving back with #Giving Tuesday™— the Tuesday following Thanksgiving, when organizations, families, businesses and individuals come together to support the causes they care about most.

Locally, United Way of Central Maryland (UWCM) will serve as the giving portal for its own programs, which include the Access to Healthy Food and Family Stability initiatives as well as 2-1-1 Maryland at UWCM, and for its local funded partners—health and human service organizations serving people living at or near the federal poverty level in central Maryland.

“While no one person acting alone can solve tough social issues like homelessness and hunger, United Way consistently demonstrates that, acting together, people can make a real difference in the lives of the less fortunate,” said Mark Furst, president and CEO of UWCM. “Individuals giving to United Way of Central Maryland on #Giving Tuesday™ can rely on the money being directed to help those facing poverty locally get and stay out of crisis and move to self-sufficiency.”

#Giving Tuesday™ is becoming a digital phenomenon, and is an indication of how charitable giving is changing in the world of new media. Giving transactions will occur primarily online, and promotion of the effort has come to life mostly via social media. Giving among young people, many of whom are new to the world of philanthropy, is also expected to be high on #Giving Tuesday™.

“The days following Thanksgiving historically have centered on buying gifts for family or friends—or shopping for yourself,” said Elise Lee, UWCM’s chief development officer. “#Giving Tuesday™ is a national celebration of generosity to kick off the holiday giving season. There is nothing more powerful for our neighbors in need than the impact of the collective.”

It’s not only an easy way for local individuals to support the causes they care most about in their community, but it is an interesting case study as to how technology is shaping the future of philanthropy and giving back, making it more accessible to more people.

It’s not only timely, but will help promote the effort to support our most vulnerable neighbors, thereby supporting our whole community during this holiday season.

See all the organizations that your donations will support. Every little bit helps and will affect the city we live in.

Participating Central Maryland Organizations (As of November 16, 2012)

You may support these following organizations on #GivingTuesday at

▪  American Heart Association
▪  Anne Arundel County CASA
▪  Arundel House of Hope
▪  Associated Black Charities
▪  Baltimore City Health Department
▪  Boys & Girls Clubs of Harford County
▪  Boys & Girls Clubs of Metropolitan Baltimore
▪  Bridges to Housing Stability
▪  Caroline Friess Center
▪  Carroll Food Sunday
▪  Civic Works
▪  Community Action Council of Howard County, Maryland
▪  Domestic Violence Center of Howard County
▪  Food Link
▪  Good Shepherd Center
▪  Govans Ecumenical Development Corporation
▪  Habitat for Humanity Susquehanna
▪  Habitat of the Chesapeake
▪  Harford Community Action
▪  Harford Family House
▪  HealthCare Access Maryland
▪  House of Ruth Maryland
▪  Legal Aid Bureau
▪  Light House
▪  Living Classrooms Foundation
▪  Marian House
▪  Maryland Center for Veterans Education and Training
▪  Maryland Coalition Against Sexual Assault
▪  Maryland Food Bank
▪  Maryland Society for Sight
▪  Mason-Dixon Community Services
▪  Meals on Wheels of Central Maryland
▪  Middle Grades Partnership
▪  Neighbor Ride
▪  Night of Peace Family Shelter
▪  Partners in Care
▪  Project PLASE
▪  Prologue, Inc.
▪  Salvation Army, Greater Baltimore Area
▪  St. Vincent de Paul of Baltimore
▪  The Arc of The Central Chesapeake Region
▪  The Samaritan Women
▪  The Sexual Assault/Spouse Abuse Resource Center (SARC)
▪  The Women’s Law Center of Maryland
▪  TurnAround
▪  Urban Alliance
▪  Women’s Housing Coalition
▪  YWCA of Annapolis and Anne Arundel County

Be One of The Many Who Will Support on #GivingTuesday. 

The following was from the press release of the United Way of Central Maryland. Strictly Baltimore supports their efforts for #GivingTuesday and wish to aid in their efforts for this day. 

Giving Tuesday

Strictly Baltimore
Like us on Facebook
Follow Us on Twitter

Also don’t forget to check out our website to see what is going on in Baltimore

Subscribe to our newsletter for more.

%d bloggers like this: