October 2, 2023 / President's Letters

President’s Letter: October 2023

AIA Baltimore just had the absolute pleasure of hosting AIA Big Sibs; a gathering of the largest AIA components from around the country.  The biggest question I got during the conference was “why do they call Baltimore charm city?”  I proceeded to explain the history; how calling Baltimore “charm city” was a part of a campaign in the 1970s to encourage people to come downtown and see how charming the city can be.  Visitors were encouraged to go to certain sites around the city where they could collect a series of charms for a charm bracelet.

The “charm city” campaign is not too dissimilar from our upcoming Doors Open Baltimore event organized by the Baltimore Architecture Foundation.  This year is Doors Open’s 10th Anniversary, which is truly an amazing milestone!  This premier event is coming up this week, starting with the kickoff lecture on October 5, followed by the weekend-long festival of open houses (Oct. 7) and guided tours (Oct. 8). Thank you to everyone who has signed up to volunteer for the event and share your love for Baltimore with others!  A huge thanks to our staff and volunteers on the Doors Open Committee, especially Chelsea Thomas, who brought Doors Open to Baltimore ten years ago!  This program would not happen without your leadership and dedication!  I certainly enjoy attending and volunteering for Doors Open each year and hope you all will join me as we celebrate a decade of sharing amazing spaces with our community.

Programs like Doors Open are not possible without the help of donations to the Baltimore Architecture Foundation.  I encourage all our members, if they cannot help volunteer time for the event, to consider a monetary donation to BAF.  If every member donated just $100, BAF could support another year of Doors Open and add programming to increase advertising, tours, and much more.  Any donation, no matter how small, can help add value to what BAF can do for our members and the architectural community.

I feel truly blessed to have had the opportunity to share what I love about Baltimore with people from around the country at Big Sibs.  As a social event, we took them on a boat cruise in the inner harbor and pointed to all the new development, historic buildings, and adaptive reuse along the waterfront.  I was reminded of how truly beautiful and wonderfully unique this city is.  I hope you can explore more of what Baltimore has to offer through Doors Open Baltimore and the rest of our offerings during October’s architecture month.

For more information about these and other upcoming events, checkout the websites below!

Now get out there and enjoy the charm of Charm City!