Skip Navigation

Image of the Baltimore County Historic Courthouse

Baltimore County News

Stay informed of what's happening in Baltimore County.
Keyword: oregon ridge nature center

Pavilion will host nature programs and events

Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz led a festive ribbon-cutting this morning of a new $190,000 nature pavilion designed to expand recreation and nature programming at the Oregon Ridge Nature Center in Cockeysville.

“This is truly one of our premier parks and the staff and nature council do a fantastic job, so, we are delighted to provide this expansive new nature pavilion that will be used for a great variety of events and nature programs,” Kamenetz said.

The Oregon Ridge Nature Center Council contributed $10,000 toward the construction of the pavilion and Bill Kidd's Toyota Volvo $40,000, with Baltimore County funding the remaining $140,000 of the cost of the Kidd's Nature Pavilion.

Oregon Ridge Park – picturesque and popular

Oregon Ridge is not only beautiful, it one of the County’s most popular parks with 330,000 people vising the park every year. They come to enjoy  the six miles of hiking trails, pavilions, outdoor sports, concerts, and the many nature and environmental programs put on by the Oregon Ridge Nature Council and County staff. Programs include animal encounters, summer camps, school field trips, scouts programs, Master Naturalist trainings and more. Last February’s Maple Sugar Weekends and the annual Pancake Breakfast brought in more than 8,000 visitors and the Honey Harvest coming up this October is expected to have attract 5,000 festival-goers.

Kamenetz increases land preservation to 90% of Oregon Ridge Park

On August 15, Kamenetz announced approval of an agreement with Land Preservation Trust places preservation protections on 450 acres of the County's Oregon Ridge Park in Cockeysville, bringing to 90% the total park acreage preserved so that it cannot be commercially or residentially developed. 

Baltimore County has aggressively promoted land preservation for decades, including placement of two-thirds of the County's geography in a rural zone, such that 80% of the County's population live on 30% of the land mass. Across all of its preservation programs, Baltimore County has preserved more than 63,000 acres of land from future development, ranking it in the top 10 counties nationally.

Nature Quest is Your Ticket to Outdoor Adventure

Nature Quest logoInterested in an adventure and a chance to find new parks in your area? You’ll love Baltimore County’s Nature Quest! Baltimore County Recreation and Parks, the Baltimore County Local Health Coalition and Wegmans grocery store have partnered to provide this fun, free adventure.

You can experience the outdoors and be active while discovering some of the best parks and trails in Baltimore County. It’s great for families, scout troops, seniors – anyone who wants to get outdoors and have fun. You can bike, hike, or canoe on designated trails and complete the Nature Quest while earning prizes.

All you have to do is finish at least five trails and you can join us on October 17 to celebrate at our Nature Quest Fest. This action- packed event will include various activities such as canoeing, fishing, live animals, crafts and more. So get your family and friends together and begin your adventure!

Complete Your Quest in Three Easy Steps!

1. Get your Passport booklet. Pick up a Nature Quest booklet from your local Wegmans store, at participating parks (Robert E. Lee Park, Center for Maryland Agriculture and Farm Park, Oregon Ridge Nature Center, Cromwell Valley Park, Marshy Point Nature Center, Benjamin Banneker Historical Park, or Honeygo Run Regional Park), or print one online at

2. Start hiking. Take your booklet and a pencil or crayon and head out on the trails. Record your progress by making a rubbing of the trail marker located on each of 13 trails. photo of hiker making rubbing from signpost

3. Collect your prizes. Prizes are awarded after accumulating rubbings from at least five of the 13 trails. In addition to the prizes, questers that complete five trails or more also receive free admission to the Nature Quest Fest on October 17. Extra incentives are available to questers that complete 7 to 13 trails! 

Shannon Davis, Park Ranger, Baltimore County Department of Recreation and Parks

Revised September 26, 2016