Support the SoBo Pop-Up Pool

Help us transform Riverside Pool!

The SoBo Pop-Up pool is bringing some big-time love to the Riverside Park Pool in summer 2019. Through color, furniture, landscaping, and shade, we are working to create a vibrant, lively, and fun community hub for everyone to cool off in the summertime. The improvements will be permanent, ensuring that the community can enjoy these changes for many years to come.

Thanks to the South Baltimore Gateway Partnership, we have been generously funded for furniture, shade, and supplies. But we are not done yet! Through your support, you will enable us to bring public art and programming to further enliven this community treasure. What does this mean? A welcoming mural in the front of the building, to greet visitors of the pool and park. Activities and events to bring the community together, with the potential of long-term programming, such as fitness and swim classes.

Donations may also be made via check (memo: SoBo Pop-Up Pool) and mailed to:

Riverside Neighborhood Association
200 E. Wells St.
Baltimore, MD 21230

Stay tuned to the SoBo Pop-Up Pool Facebook page for updates and volunteer opportunities!

We can’t wait to see you out there this summer!

6th Annual Cookie Contest

Bakers and tasters of all ages participated in our Holiday Cookie Contest sponsored by Domino Sugar on Monday, December 17. This year’s panel of judges included (left to right) Delegate Brooke Lierman, Peter O’Malley of ASR/Domino Sugar, and Senator Bill Ferguson (selfie by Bill).

After a blind tasting and much deliberation, our judges named the following winners of this year’s contest:

First Place: Lexi Fisher

Chocolate Sugar Cookies with Mint Frosting

Cookie Ingredients

  • 1½ cups butter, softened
  • 2 cups Domino white sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3½ cups all purpose flour (17.5 oz)
  • 1½ cups cocoa (4.5 oz)
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt


  1. In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar until smooth, about 2 minutes.  Mix in eggs and vanilla, about 30 seconds.  Stir in flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt.  Cover and chill dough for at least one hour or up to 48 hours.
  2. Preheat oven to 400F.  Place about half the dough between two sheets of wax paper and roll to about ¼ – ½ inch thick.  Peel off the top wax paper, then replace gently.  Flip the dough and peel off the other piece of wax paper. Cut into shapes with cookie cutters.  Place cookies about 1-2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake 6-8 minutes.  Cool about 10 minutes on pan, then transfer to wire rack to completely cool before decorating.
  3. Repeat with other half of the dough.  Leftover dough will be easier to use if refrigerated prior to rerolling.

Royal Icing (Mint) Ingredients

  • 2 lb Domino powdered sugar
  • ¾ cup room temperature water
  • 2 tsp peppermint extract
  • 1 tsp cream of tartar
  • 5 Tbsp meringue powder
  • Gel food colors, as desired
  • Sprinkles, etc., as desired


Place the powdered sugar into a large mixing bowl.  In a measuring cup, combine water, peppermint extract, cream of tartar, and meringue powder.  Stir well to combine.  Add the wet ingredients to the powdered sugar.  Beat on low to combine, then on medium-high to high until stiff peaks form.  Keep covered, with saran wrap directly in contact with the frosting to prevent drying, at room temperature until use.  Thin with water to the right consistency prior to use.  Divide into portions and tint as desired.null

Second Place: Jen McLaughlin

Eggnog Blossoms from the Food Network


  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup Domino sugar
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream
  • 1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons rum extract
  • 1 small pinch ground cloves
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 4 teaspoons freshly grated nutmeg
  • 24 foil-wrapped striped milk chocolate-white chocolate drops, such as Hershey Hugs, unwrapped


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl until combined. Beat the butter and 1/2 cup of the sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed in a large bowl until creamy, about 1 minute. Add the cream, rum extract, cloves, egg yolk and 2 teaspoons of the nutmeg and beat until smooth. Add the flour mixture and mix on low speed until the dough just combines.
  3. Roll the dough into twenty-four 1-inch balls using a 1/2-ounce ice cream scoop or a tablespoon. Combine the remaining 1/4 cup sugar and 2 teaspoons nutmeg in a small bowl. Roll the balls in the spiced sugar to coat, and then arrange 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets.
  4. Bake the cookies, rotating the baking sheets front to back and top to bottom halfway through, until golden brown at the edges, about 14 minutes. Remove the baking sheets from the oven, place on wire racks and immediately press a chocolate drop in the center of each cookie while it is still soft and warm. Do not move the cookies until the chocolate has completely set and the cookies are cool, at least 1 hour.

Third Place: The Johnson Family

Chocolate Truffle Cookies from Taste of Home


  • 2 cups (12 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips, divided
  • 4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 1/3 cup butter, cubed
  • 1 cup Domino sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons baking cocoa
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Domino confectioners’ sugar


  1. In a microwave, melt 1 cup chocolate chips, unsweetened chocolate and butter; stir until smooth. Cool 10 minutes.
  2. In a large bowl, beat sugar and eggs 2 minutes. Beat in chocolate mixture and vanilla. In another bowl, whisk flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt; gradually beat into chocolate mixture. Stir in remaining chocolate chips. Refrigerate, covered, until firm enough to handle, at least 3 hours.
  3. Preheat oven to 350°. With lightly floured hands, shape dough into 1-in. balls; place 2 in. apart on ungreased baking sheets. Bake until lightly puffed and set, 10-12 minutes. Cool on pans 3 minutes. Remove to wire racks to cool. Dust with confectioners’ sugar.

HELP WANTED: Public Safety Chair

RNA Volunteer Board Member Position Opening:
Public Safety Chair

In this role, you would perform duties including but not limited to:
(1) Act as a liaison between the Riverside Neighborhood Association and the Southern District of the Baltimore Police Department
(2) Confirm officer attendance at monthly meetings and safety walks
(2) Attend or delegate attendance to monthly Community Relations Council meetings (third Thursdays)
(3) Respond to resident concerns, and take issues to the Southern as needed
(4) Provide crime updates/prevention tips for newsletter articles
(5) Attend monthly neighborhood meetings as often as possible (last Mondays)
(6) Participate in quarterly Board meetings

If you are unable to attend all meetings, it is very possible to share these duties with another person or a small committee. If you live in the Riverside neighborhood (map) and are interested, please e-mail John at

Residential Permit Parking Update

On Monday, February 26, residents were updated on the Residential Parking Permit (RPP) process and the status of Riverside Neighborhood Association’s application. Steve Robinson of the Parking Authority of Baltimore City (PABC) reviewed the current RPP process. He was followed by Jeff Brown, RNA’s parking committee chairman, who presented a comprehensive presentation that outlined the history of RPP in our community, the details of our application, and the next steps we will take to begin implementation. At the conclusion of the presentation, Jeff distributed this one-pager for residents, and questions were answered, as detailed in the meeting minutes.

The parking study referenced throughout can be found here. Please note that for the purposes of this study, “Riverside” refers to what is now known as Riverside and Federal Hill South. RNA’s boundaries can be found on the About Us page.

If you have any questions about RPP in our neighborhood, please don’t hesitate to contact Jeff at or ask us at the March 26th social at Wiley Gunters.

5th Annual Cookie Contest Winners – 2017

Our 5th Annual Holiday Cookie Contest was held on Monday, December 11. It was such a wonderful event! Thanks to our resident bakers, to our judges- repeat past winner Erin Chrest, Peter O’Malley of Domino Sugar Baltimore, and Major Ward of the Baltimore Police Department- Southern District, and of course to Domino Sugar for sponsoring our contest each year! As the crowd enjoyed the cookies, the judges were hard at work determining the top three.

After much deliberation, the winners were announced!

1st Place – Blake Fisher

Thick and Chewy Triple Chocolate Cookies
2 cups flour (10 oz)
0.5 cup cocoa (1.5 oz) – Blake used dark
2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
4 large eggs
2 tsp instant coffee
2 tsp vanilla
10 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
1.5 cups brown sugar (10.5 oz)
0.5 cup white sugar (3.5 oz)
16 oz semi-sweet chocolate – Blake used chips
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips (12 oz)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Line baking sheet(s) with parchment paper.
3. Melt 16 oz of semi-sweet chocolate over simmering water in heat-proof bowl.  Allow to cool while proceeding.
4. In medium bowl, whisk flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt together.
5. In small bowl, whisk eggs, instant coffee, and vanilla together, until coffee dissolves.
6. In large bowl, beat butter, brown sugar, and white sugar with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3-6 minutes.
7. Add egg mixture (from step 5) to the large bowl and beat until mixed.
8. Add melted chocolate (from step 3) to the large bowl and beat until mixed.
9. Reduce speed to low and slowly add flour mixture (from step 4), mix until combined.
10. Stir in chocolate chips until incorporated.
11. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and allow to stand at room temperature until scoopable, at least 30 minutes.
12. Using a 3 Tbsp cookie scoop, portion the dough and roll into balls.
13. Place on prepared baking sheet about 2 inches apart.
14. Bake at 350 until edges are set, but centers are still soft and puffy, about 10-12 minutes.  (Cookies will look underdone between the cracks.)
15. Let cookies cool on sheet(s) for 10 minutes, then transfer to wire rack and cool completely.
16. Repeat steps 12-15 with cooled cookie sheet.
Make ahead – Blake did this
Portion as directed (in step 12), place close but not touching onto baking sheet,  Place baking sheet in freezer.  Once frozen completely, transfer to a ziplock bag.  To bake, transfer frozen dough to parchment-lined baking sheet (step 13) and bake as directed (in step 14), increasing cooking time to 12-17 minutes.

2nd Place – Jen LaHatte

Recreate Jen’s Red Velvet Thumbprints with Cream Cheese Marshmallow Frosting cookies with this recipe, but leave out the chocolate chips.

3rd Place – Katie Dunn

Recreate Katie’s Compost Cookies with this recipe. Yum!
Each winner went home with a crate full of sugar and a gift certificate to a local restaurant! Congratulations and enjoy!!