Oakenshawe December Updates

Happy December Oakenshawe Neighbors,

This month’s Oakenshawe Improvement Association (OIA) Newsletter includes:

  • 2023 Recap
  • Lost Key
  • Become a Baltimore Treekeeper
  • Oakenshawe Meal Exchange
  • Save the Dates and more!

Happy Holidays & 2023 Recap

On behalf of the OIA Board, we hope you have a wonderful holiday season and end of year with your loved ones. We are thankful to live in such a wonderful community, with amazing neighbors.

While the beginning of the year may feel like yesterday, a lot has happened. Below is a brief recap of some highlights from the neighborhood:

  • January: We held our quarterly meeting & parking permit pickup at the University Baptist Church where we launched the new OIA Committee Structure.
  • February: We launched the Oakenshawe Opines series in this newsletter, calling all neighbors to submit content, business reviews, suggestions, and ideas to share with neighbors.
  • March: We held two training sessions for the Green Space Mowing volunteers and coordinated the schedule. Thank you Laurie and Louisa for your leadership and the volunteers who keep the Green Space beautiful.
  • April: We held our quarterly meeting and launched the OIA Block Captain system to try to better communicate with neighbors, especially those who may not be on this newsletter or new to the neighborhood. Many neighbors also joined the East University Parkway Task Force as part of the Mayor’s Spring Cleanup and Day of Service on Earth Day and participated in the relaunch of Progressive Dinner.
  • May: Anne and Shannon led a walkabout of the neighborhood to identify trees for removal, stump grinding, and pruning (Check out the community updates below if you are interested in becoming a Baltimore TreeKeeper).
  • June: We held a field day in the Green Space full of fun, friends, and games for kids around the neighborhood and appreciated the floral fruits of the labor of all those who helped create the new pollinator garden as it bloomed this summer.
  • July: We held our quarterly meeting and Louisa organized a summer spruce up of the Green Space to weed, spread mulch, prune buses, trim grasses, and weed the pollinator garden.
  • August: We mostly enjoyed the waning days of summer and planned for the upcoming OIA Block Party on Homewood Terrace, our signature annual event.
  • September: We held a smashing OIA Block Party, despite the uncertain weather, thanks to all of the volunteers who helped clean, string lights, set up the party, cooked food, and so much more. P.S. Fill out this survey and let us know how we can improve the block party for next year.
  • October: We held our quarterly meeting and the annual Oakenshawe Halloween Parade for kids — and kids-at-heart — thanks to the organizing of Colin and Susan.
  • November: We celebrated the ongoing renaissance of Greenmount’s business district, with the opening of several new businesses along the corridor this year, including Jinji’s Chocolate and Toki Underground.

Do you have ideas for what you would like to see more of next year? Please write to us at oakenshawenews@gmail.com. Or better yet, save the date for the next OIA meeting on January 20th and share in person. Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!

Lost Key

Are you missing the key pictured above? Please reach out to johnhillegass@gmail.com and share the general timeframe (i.e. week) you lost it so we can try to confirm it is yours.

January Parking Permit Pickup

OIA plans to host another parking permit pickup, coinciding with the January board meeting. The parking permit pickup provides an alternate option for neighbors who do not want to pick up their permit at the offices downtown or pay extra to have it shipped.

OIA plans to host the parking permit pickup *tentatively* on January 20.

More details to come in future newsletter updates.

Save the Dates

Below are some important dates that you should add to your calendar. 

  • Sunday, December 31: East University Parkway Task Force Community Cleanup 
  • Saturday, January 20 *Tentative*: Parking Permit Pickup & OIA Quarterly Meeting
  • Saturday, September 7, 2024: Annual Oakenshawe Block Party 

Community Updates

Become a Baltimore TreeKeeper

Baltimore TreeKeepers is TreeBaltimore’s free, city-wide tree stewardship program open to all city residents interested in helping Baltimore’s trees. As a TreeKeeper, you’ll learn how to help plant and care for trees on your street, in your neighborhood, around your schools, and in your parks. Upon completion of this workshop, participants will get a certificate that allows them to trim street trees as needed.  And, you’ll join a growing community of people who care about Baltimore City’s tree canopy. Sign up now! TreeBaltimore’s next pruning training on Saturday, January 13th, from 10am-1:30pm

Oakenshawe Meal Exchange

Interested in joining a neighborhood meal exchange for adventurous planners. The idea is to stimulate community, while reducing the overall amount of thought process behind meal planning at home. Meeting and exchange location will mainly occur at the Oakenshawe green space unless otherwise communicated. If interested in learning more, reach out to Davon Pulliam at geraldrinkcidre@gmail.com.

Pro-Tip: Watch the Winter Sunet from the Hopkins Bleachers

Looking for some cheap, meaningful thrills to combat the winter blues? Catch the sunset from the Hopkins stadium bleachers. It’s a great way to spend some time marveling at creation and appreciating the community asset.

Councilmember Ramos Weekly Newsletter

Councilmember Ramos sends out a weekly District 14 newsletter (Oakenshawe falls within Council District 14) that includes updates on legislation in City Council, events, and more. This is a good resource to stay up to date on local news. Sign up for the Councilmember’s weekly newsletter on her website.

Oakenshawe Opines

If you have a local business review, poem, or story for the next newsletter you would like to see featured, submissions can be sent to John Hillegass at johnhillegass@gmail.com. Publication and editing decisions are at the discretion of the OIA Board.

Contractor Recommendations

Have you had a good experience with a contractor, handyman, landscaper or house cleaner?  Are you willing to share with your neighbors? The Oakenshawe Improvement Association often gets emails from members asking for suggestions for repairs, home improvements or just help with the yard.

We have created this google doc for folks to add names and contact info for the ones you have liked and recommend.  Help your neighbors and help a contractor with new business.Be sure to include your name and contact info! 


OIA Block Captains

OIA’s Block Captains help communicate with neighbors, especially those who may not be on this newsletter. Thank you to the amazing volunteers listed below. Hopefully, most of you have already met your Block Captain. 

BarclayVanessa ProtoSouthway 200-300sJessica Kohnen
BirkwoodRachael EdginSouthway 400sShannon Frede
CalvertLaura UrbanEUP 200sEd & Karen Stokes*
CalvinDavon PulliamEUP Guilford HallNeed Volunteer
The CarrolltonKevin ClearyEUP 301-320Need Volunteer
Guilford Terrace (Even side)Ben WrightEUP 321+Bethan McGarry
Guilford Terrace (Odd side)Co-Captains: Marcy Feeney & Anne KernUniversity Place (Odds)Robin  Prescott
Homewood TerraceLeah GlasheenUniversity Place (Evens)Amelia Jamison
Oakenshawe PlaceJenny SorelVenableDavon Pulliam**

*Ed and Karen Stokes have agreed to help temporarily on the 200 block of EUP until we can find a permanent block captain.

**Davon Pulliam has agreed to help temporarily on Venable until we can find a permanent block captain.

If you know anyone who lives on a block without a captain, ask them if they are interested in volunteering or can think of a friendly neighbor who might be interested. Block Captains greet & welcome new neighbors, drop off flyers ahead of quarterly OIA meetings, seek volunteers for events, and gather contact information to keep OIA’s neighbor database up-to-date. If you are interested, please reach out to John at johnhillegass@gmail.com

On behalf of the OIA Board, we hope you have a wonderful December and we look forward to seeing you around the neighborhood.

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