Inner Harbor - Visit Baltimore - © 2016
Inner Harbor - Visit Baltimore - © 2016
Baltimore Skyline - Visit Baltimore - © 2016
Inner Harbor Aerial Shot - Visit Baltimore - © 2016

Field Trips

Baltimore has ready access to well-known scenic sites and we’re pleased to offer many exciting and informative scientific excursions. Half-day trips will be offered on Tuesday, April 11th and full-day trips will be offered on Thursday, April 13th.

Half Day
  Tuesday, April 11 - 1:00pm to 5:00pm

National Aquarium – Sustainable Seafood Talk and Tour

Join us and a special guest speaker at the National Aquarium to get a behind the scenes tour geared towards sustainable seafood! Learn what Baltimore and the Chesapeake Bay are doing to help educate commercial fisherman and famers, distributors and local market owners. After the talk and tour, you will be able to explore the aquarium and see the tropical forest exhibits, watch the dolphin show, and see shark alley! all on the other side of the Inner Harbor just a short walk from the conference hotel.

Fee: $65
Olmstead-designed Parks and Wooded Areas

Although many are familiar with the Olmsted-designed parkways of Manhattan, the Olmsted’s also played an important role in the planning of Baltimore's parks, especially following the comprehensive report of 1904.  This tour will begin at the city's north-south center (Charles St.) for Wyman Park Dell, a small gem, perhaps the most complete example of an Olmsted-planned park in Baltimore; then follow the set of Olmsted-inspired (and now historically designated parkways through Druid Hill Park--the city's major comprehensive park) and further along Gwynn’s Falls Parkway to Gwynn’s Falls Park, where the wooded, secluded valley always comes as a surprise to those not expecting such scenery within the city's limits.  

Fee: $30
Restoration Efforts in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor

Once known for its high levels of pollution, Baltimore’s Inner Harbor has experienced a remarkable resurgence in both economic and environmental terms.  This tour will visit ongoing Harbor restoration efforts as part of the Waterfront Partnership; including several floating wetlands, biohut oyster structures, and the demonstration of a novel living bulkhead system.  A short jaunt to the Dundalk Marine Terminal will allow us to visit a functional water scrubber system that uses algae to remove pollutants from Harbor waters.

Fee: $30
Tour of the IMET Biotechnology Center

The Institute of Marine & Environmental Technology is a joint research institute between the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science, the University of Maryland Baltimore County, and the University of Maryland Baltimore. Scientists at IMET conduct marine and environmental research and create technologies designed to foster and protection and restoration of coastal marine systems and their watersheds.  Just a short walk from the conference hotel past the National Aquarium, IMET’s work includes novel uses of aquaculture and genomics to foster marine bioenergy; environmental sensors; environmental remediation; marine biomedicine; and sustainable urban ports and ecosystems.

Fee: $30

Full Day
  Thursday, April 13 - 8:00am to 5:00pm

Baltimore’s Urban Forest Patches

One fifth of Baltimore’s tree canopy is made up of woodland patches (>10000 ft2) outside of parks and many on privately owned land. Scientists and community non-profits are collaborating to understand their biodiversity and the ecosystem services they provide. Tour representative patches and learn about their unique character, how local citizens are playing a role in protecting some while reshaping others, and how collective understanding is being harnessed to maintain Baltimore’s Forests.

Fee: $60
Smithsonian Environmental Research Center

Since 1965, the Smithsonian Institution has operated a scientific research center on the Chesapeake Bay. Its campus boasts 2,650 acres of diverse landscape, 16 miles of protected shoreline, and a 92,000 ft2 LEED-platinum laboratory building with advanced energy and storm water management systems. SERC’s research in the coastal zone--where 70% of the world’s people live--addresses pressing environmental issues, including: toxic chemicals, water quality, invasive species, land use, fisheries, and global change. On the tour of research sites, talk with SERC scientists about elevated CO2 experiments in coastal marshes, the effects of tree diversity on forest function, watershed discharges to Chesapeake Bay, the effects of stream restoration on nutrient transport, and other SERC projects. Cruise the Rhode River on the R/V SERC (weather permitting) and observe shoreline transitions first hand.

Fee: $80
The Baltimore Ecosystem Study Site Tour

Since 1998, Baltimore has been home to NSF’s first Urban Long Term Ecological Research Site: The Baltimore Ecosystem Study. A pioneer in the study of urban ecosystems, the BES-LTER is known for its use of watersheds in understanding the integrative effects of human land use own ecological function in a patch-dynamics framework along an urban-rural gradient. Tour some of the sites that have informed this groundbreaking scientific study and learn about feedbacks among social, economic, and historical processes that drive differences in ecological outcomes.

Fee: $75