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The Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) joined our Washington Village neighbors on the 700-900 block of Washington Boulevard on September 9 to celebrate the 5th Annual Pigtown Festival. The event celebrates the neighborhood’s revitalization and the growing commitment of its residents to preserve its historical significance while improving their quality of life.
Pigtown, its name derived during the turn of the century when pigs ran through the streets from the B&O railroad to the local slaughterhouses, is a resurging community in Baltimore. The Pigtown community lies within one of our Environmental Benefits Districts (EBD). MDE is housed in the old Montgomery Ward building, now known as Montgomery Park, which has been revitalized into an ecologically friendly “Green Building”. The commercial buildings, combined with re-faced and remodeled old form-stone row houses, to the new town homes being constructed all reflect how much the neighborhood is growing.
Last month’s festival showcased the neighborhood and the diverse population that calls Pigtown home. The public came from all over the city and state and beyond to come down and enjoy a day in Baltimore and from as far away as the Eastern Shore and Pennsylvania.
Heat Turns Running into “Walking” of the Pigs
The highlight of the day was the traditional running of the pigs. Washington Boulevard was fenced off for four blocks and the center of the street was set up for a half-block pig run. The heat actually could only encourage the “Walking of the Pigs.”
Stages set up at each end of the festival featured bands and entertainment, a rib cooking contest, and vendors selling everything from Natty Boh T-shirts to crab cakes. Face painting, clowns and stilt walkers also entertained the crowd. Numerous community organizations distributed information. MDE provided information from lead paint removal, to air pollution, to recycling/e-cycling and the Chesapeake Bay Restoration Fund.