Close this search box.

Paid Advertisement

Close this search box.

Crab Cake Row: The power and history of the St. Francis Neighborhood Center to lift Penn North


Paid Advertisement

Podcast Audio Vault


Paid Advertisement

The power and history of the St. Francis Neighborhood Center to lift Penn North and Reservoir Hill. Lily Goldsmith and Ayana Freelon educate Nestor on the oldest youth enrichment center in Baltimore at “A Cup Of Soup Or Bowl” at Faidley’s in Lexington Market. Oh, and an invitation to a really cool event: The Kaleidoscope Ball with a cool Wizard of Oz theme on May 3rd at Guilford Hall Brewery!


francis, absolutely, neighborhood, year, people, center, program, enrichment, talking, serve, torben, youth programs, today, students, community, guilford, maryland, field trips, learning, friday


Ayanna Freelon, Nestor J. Aparicio, Lily Goldsmith

Nestor J. Aparicio  00:04

Welcome back. We are live at fake news and I mean live like things are breaking things are happening. I have not hydrated nearly enough today. I’ve had half a fish sandwich no crab cakes. No shrimp salad, no oysters, all the things I usually do with fate these because I’m talking for a living eight hours a day. We’re gonna be doing eight hours on Tuesday cost is Wednesday. Coco’s Thursday. We’re gonna be at State Fair in Catonsville. And then on Friday, we’re going to be up at Pappas and Cockeysville getting done. We’re talking to people in the community making a difference. Torbin Greene was allegedly going to be the guest here from the St. Francis Neighborhood Center. I don’t really know Torbin, I only know of him. He is a he’s a little bit of a man about town, but he’s a little under the weather here today. So I want to make sure that I get the full story here. So I got Lily Goldsmith. I got a Ayanna Freeland here from the St. Francis Neighborhood Center. You’re not a lot of people have hit me over the years. John Enoch was involved with St. Francis Neighborhood Center. A lot of other people have come to me and said I need to promote you guys. I have invited Torben on for four years since played time, okay. And I have never had him on. I’ve had his wife on. But I’ve never had him on the show. And he came recommended, and I don’t know him. I still have never met him fully met him. He was eight feet away during the last segment when my equipment was falling apart. And I was making a mess of it. And I looked at Mr. Torbin, hey, hey, I look up. He’s gone now. So he was under the weather, which is giving COVID I don’t need him here. But the only time I’ve ever met Torben, are you ready for this? I’m at Quigley’s quickly says a bar, about this big. It’s a row home bar, over in rich Lee’s by the football, the baseball stadium that they’re 12 blocks from here, but a hospital. And it was opening day and there’s a band outside and I went inside to get a beer. And a guy’s in line in front of me. And he turns around to me, and he says, Hey, you’re nasty Nestor. And I’m like, Do you know who I am? I said, You’re Torbin effing green. And he said, I didn’t think you know who I was. I’m like, through my timeline all the time. You know, it’s, it’s Facebook. And so what do I need to know about Torbin other and I hope he’s doing well. He’s not under the weather. But when I think of St. Francis Neighborhood Center, I think a Torbin, so I’ve invited him, invited him invite him. It’s like I’m seeing tonight yawn. I’m shadowing her. She’s gonna do a great job that he shows up, and then he disappeared. So pressure. So what’s going on with Torbin what’s happening with him?


Lily Goldsmith  02:41

He’s just, you know, a hot commodity. He

Nestor J. Aparicio  02:44

just evaporated. Yeah,

Lily Goldsmith  02:47

now he’s feeling under the weather. But he’s generally usually very busy.

Ayanna Freelon  02:53


Yeah, these are busy times busy. Yes. The same neighborhood center. Yes.

Lily Goldsmith  02:57

He is a very busy man.

Nestor J. Aparicio  02:58

First things first St. Francis Neighborhood Center. Willie, where is that? Where is the St. Francis Neighborhood Center.

Ayanna Freelon  03:03

We are located in reservoir hill. We were founded in 1963. And we’ve been on the same block of white lock street. That entire time. Last year, we celebrated our 60th anniversary. You’re not 60? Yeah, neither one of us where? Yeah, we’re in the heart of reservoir Hill, just south of Druid Hill. Park. 21217 is our service area we also serve. We serve reservoir Hill and Penn North primarily through a variety of community programming all


Nestor J. Aparicio  03:33

blue. Yeah, I know exactly. I know what you guys are. And I’ve, I’ve had a whole bunch of people over the years tell me that you’re something you’re the you’re the basis of Baltimore positive, you’re, you know, you’re a thing. You’re a foundational part of things that I would be talking about. I mean, I hear a lot about your place. I’ve never been over. I’ve had guests on to talk about it not Torben who’s avoiding duck in me. He’s talking me through the Orioles get sold. I get it. It’s fun. But I know you guys do beautiful work. So I just want to start soup to nuts. If people don’t know about you, what do they need to know? Sure.

Lily Goldsmith  04:06

So, St. Francis Neighborhood Center. We offer wraparound services for youth adult and the children’s parents. We have youth programs that we run after school, in partnership with Dorthea Heights Elementary School, we have a senior program that that we run in the center, and we also have a food program that we offer to the neighborhood. Every week we we have neighborhood the neighborhood comes in and they they get the food. Do you want to talk about a little bit about the youth program? Yeah,

Ayanna Freelon  04:43

sure. So the well, um, so the power project is our flagship program it serves K through eight students who they either live attend school or their parents work or worship in the 21 seven zip code So they come to us after school, we provide transportation if needed. So we have bus drivers who somehow make their way across the entire city and pick these kids up, bring them to St. Francis. And from around two until 6pm, we have enrichment partners come in, we work with organizations called Baltimore Clayworks art with a heart, just to name a few Baltimore peace players, we do arts enrichment, we do outdoor athletic activities to get kids moving during the year, and then we also have the igniter internship program which serves. So after eighth grade, if students choose to continue with us, and they, they tend to some we have some students who start kindergarten go all the way through middle in high school. So when they graduate, middle school, then they go to high school, the high school Internship Program, where they do workforce development, they do career planning, resume building, and kind of expose themselves. Right now we have interns, kind of working under different staff members. So you know, I have an interest in learning about marketing and marketing and communications, work. And we’ve got people working in community engagement, type stuff, volunteer coordination. So that’s, that’s during the academic year. I don’t know if you also want to know about the summer program.

Nestor J. Aparicio  06:15


Programs are more intense, right? Because kids don’t go to school, right? This is when trouble happens. So let’s be honest, idle time, right? I mean, you’re trying to keep people active and keep their keep them where they should be focused.

Ayanna Freelon  06:27

Absolutely. summer learning loss is a huge issue, no matter where, no matter where you are. Um, and that was a big issue during the pandemic, as well exacerbated. So, during the summer, we have two sessions, some students do bulk sessions, some do just one depending on other things that they want to do during the summer. But we it’s the same kind of follows the same idea of arts enrichment partners that we go on field trips. So the program is called the summer of service excursion. So the idea is to get kids out, get them new experiences, we travel all over, not just Baltimore, but the whole like Maryland region. So we go on different field trips. We and then the other part component of it is a service learning portion. So they learn how to sort of get engaged with their community see how that they how they can make an impact. So you know, this this past year, we talked about beekeeping because we have a bee colony at St. Francis. So they learned about how

Nestor J. Aparicio  07:22

bees report. Yeah. Chain everything. Yes,

Ayanna Freelon  07:26

yeah. So you know, how is something in your neighborhood can really connect to something that affects us all? So So pouring back into your community? So that’s one of our core kind of things to get through whatever you


Nestor J. Aparicio  07:39

do. Okay. So, I have a right here, S fn C, that’s the St. Francis Neighborhood Center is the oldest neighborhood center providing enrichment and all the Baltimore City The mission is committed to ending generational poverty through education, inspiring self esteem, self improvement, and strengthening connections to the community people you serving over there, yada.

Lily Goldsmith  07:59

Well, our youth programs serve about 60 students, okay, our senior programs serve about, I guess, we have maybe about 30 seniors that we serve, but We service the entire two into and seven. So through our food programs, and the wraparound services that we provide. The number is is really infinite.

Nestor J. Aparicio  08:18

Well, look, you got to save the date card here. And that probably means that you’re throwing a party of some kind. So when I see save the date, I got a little QR code back here. What is going on on Friday, the May 3 at the other than that’s the day before the Kentucky Derby and my wife’s out of town, so I’m gonna have a good time. Paul brewery saved the day a fundraising gala. What are we doing that night? Yes.

Lily Goldsmith  08:41


So we’re really excited to be partners with Guilford Hall brewery this year. And they’ve been so gracious to work with us and

Nestor J. Aparicio  08:49

to do good work of their

Lily Goldsmith  08:52

exceptional Yeah, they are. Yeah. And they’ve been so gracious to working with us on our fundraising gala. So this year, instead of hosting our gala at St. Francis Neighborhood Center, we’ll be hosting at Guilford homebrew one of

Nestor J. Aparicio  09:05

the food’s gonna be good here. Let’s use showcase. That’s your charge of that. Oh, boy. I might be charged at buffet music and dancing. Absolutely. That’s one night out. May 3 is tonight to save the day. You can find out all the information, tell people where to go and get more information on you so they can pitch and help you guys out.


Lily Goldsmith  09:22

Absolutely. Well. If they would like to they can email me directly perfect.

Nestor J. Aparicio  09:29

At first, absolutely.

Lily Goldsmith  09:30

Jana but not her? Absolutely. So they can definitely reach out to me directly. My email address is on the website, but it’s also Ayana at St. Francis We will we have a

Nestor J. Aparicio  09:47


for awhile.

Ayanna Freelon  09:50

invited to this event before you be attending this year.

Nestor J. Aparicio  09:54

I can’t say right now. I have to check my schedule my crowd. My dance card I know Yeah. I’m in town. I’m in cat duty. My wife goes away with her sister running around. I watched the cat. So as long as I feed the cat around 530 I can be there at six. Okay, perfect. Yeah, you’re

Lily Goldsmith  10:11

gonna have a good time. All right, well, it’s got everything I want open


Nestor J. Aparicio  10:13

bar buffet music and dancing. We

Ayanna Freelon  10:16

actually have something pretty special. I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but we’ve been keeping keeping the secret pretty close to our chest bedroom anymore. We recently picked the theme for this year’s gala. We kind of keep it a secret. No, no, no. We decided that we wanted to debut it on your show. Today is a special a special treat for people who

Nestor J. Aparicio  10:37

are on hold on hold on theme theme Island. No. All right. All right. Hold on. Hold on. Hold on. Taylor Swift. Now. All right. Wait out blackout purple out. No, no, that’s taken. What are you doing? Tell me tell me the theme.

Lily Goldsmith  10:53


So our theme this year is the ways journey to art. Okay, so

Nestor J. Aparicio  10:59

I’m either going to be Dorothy toto can I be the Great Wizard of Oz? You

Lily Goldsmith  11:04

could? You could. All right. Absolutely. So coming your most festive with outfits. Emerald City. We’re gonna have to go. Oh, absolutely.

Nestor J. Aparicio  11:17

We represent. Remember that one? Yeah. I’ll have to think about that. If I could pick one. I wouldn’t be the Cowardly Lion. I don’t want to be that guy. I wouldn’t want to be the Scarecrow. Oh, but he’s really really brave. You don’t want the Tin Man. Looks like a lot of work. I’ve seen people do Tin Man. On Halloween. Don’t let you can pee. Important thing is that you can pay? Yeah, one year I dressed up like grapes. We were the fruit of grapes. Yeah, no, no, you cannot relieve it says open bar. I’m going to be drinking. Yeah, definitely. Not gonna be. I’m gonna do something that’s normal.


Lily Goldsmith  11:53

Okay, well, if you can’t figure it out, always, you know coming your best Emerald City outfit. I can just wear green. You can you can perfect. You absolutely all red, yellow.

Nestor J. Aparicio  12:04

I got a free lunch here. Lily Goldsmith. This year. They’re from the St. Francis Neighborhood Center. They’re doing your annual fundraising gala on May 3, but you can find them anytime right out. Fit Sue, right? Absolutely. Torben I hope he feels better accidentally. Stop talking me. Tell him to come on the show one day. Oh, yeah.

Ayanna Freelon  12:22

We’ll we’ll come on the show. Again. We certainly

Lily Goldsmith  12:24


will. And also, if anyone is interested, please, you can visit St. Francis to sign up for the official mailing list for when our tickets go live.

Nestor J. Aparicio  12:36

If I do that, right. Oh, no, I’m just, I’m just making sure. Absolutely

Lily Goldsmith  12:41


Ayanna Freelon  12:42

No, but we do. We do have a earlybird discount particularly. So you’ll be the first to know should you sign up. You’ve given us now


Nestor J. Aparicio  12:48

have an idea from the week by the way. I didn’t like the what’s the prequel? The they played up the street? Wicked. Oh, yeah. I wasn’t a wiki guy. You know, I’m

Lily Goldsmith  13:02

a musical girl. So I love music. You’d like with the waves is definitely my favorite

Nestor J. Aparicio  13:08

easel down the road. I want to go down the road. Alright, my thanks to Lily and Ayanna. We are data families. We’re doing it all for the Maryland Food Bank. It’s a couple of Super Bowl it is it sits crabcake row we couldn’t do radio row in Vegas, the Ravens loss, but I have a raven world champion. I feel him he’s here in a couple minutes. I got one segment I got to do but Femi either Dasia is going to be here. We’re going to talk to Casey cares on next and then we’re going to have family in here. Families with a great great group that came to me through my chiropractor, Dr. Steve belly group called turnaround so we’re going to learn about them as well. We’re learning about a lot of great shared here today. It’s all brought to you by the Maryland law but you got to get your tickets. My goodness, 10 times the cashier for Aiyana. And, and for Lilly, you know, I would give one to Torben, but he’s kind of got to be out. You got to be here to be eligible. You know, you gotta be present to win. That’s all I’m talking about. Tomorrow, we’re going to be cost this Wednesday. We’re going to be Coco’s Thursday. We’re going to be state fair Friday at Pappas and Cockeysville nine until five, I swear if my equipment makes it till Friday, and my sanity and my voice. I’m going to rest on Saturday, and then I’m going to Hollywood casino on Sunday I’m going to watch I hear Taylor Swift’s going to a football game you wear this or not? You chiefs your Niners What do you got

Lily Goldsmith  14:23


Niners? Yeah,

Ayanna Freelon  14:26

I tuned out after

Nestor J. Aparicio  14:27

you know a lot of people did on this tour. We’re back for more from families. We are wn st am 5070, Towson Baltimore and we never stop talking Baltimore positive

Share the Post:

Paid Advertisement

Right Now in Baltimore

Thomas Dolby: A Totally Tubular 80s music fest that is poetry in motion

Our resident professor in residence at Johns Hopkins and 80s MTV icon Thomas Dolby returns with Nestor at State Fare on the Maryland Crab Cake Tour to discuss his new book, new hair and Totally Tubular 80s Tour this summer…

Smalltimore, sports and the trust of local news

As the Maryland Crab Cake Tour always seeks to introduce mutual old friends of ours and network to make new friends, this time its our favorite family chiropractor and philosopher Steve Elliott joining longtime WBAL broadcaster John Patti and Nestor…

It's your move, Mike Elias...

Luke Jones and Nestor assess the work ahead to improving the Baltimore Orioles pitching before the July 31st trading deadline. A starter? A pair of relievers? And at what cost...

Paid Advertisement

Scroll to Top