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MEGAN DOYLE | BMORE MINIMAL

A transplant from New York, Megan enjoys the community, connections, and camaraderie of living in Baltimore.
Megan is skilled at finding those hidden gems in our homes and in our lives that support connection and cultivate community.

Email Megan: bmoreminimal[at]gmail[dot]com
How interesting!: Megan’s first job out of college was with the documentary series Roadtrip Nation, living with strangers in an RV for weeks on end! Megan credits Roadtrip Nation for inspiring her deep appreciation of minimalism, well-designed spaces, and dry shampoo.

What brought you to Baltimore?
I’m originally from New York. I moved here with my fiancé, Ryan, in 2016. Before that, we lived in Philadelphia where I completed my Masters’ in Education, Culture, and Society at UPenn. We then lived briefly in DC, but each time we visited friends in Baltimore it got harder and harder to leave the comfortable, casual vibes of Charm City and return to Washington.

I started scheming about moving here and finally landed my dream job teaching at City Neighbors Public Charter School, a progressive, project-based school in Northeast Baltimore.

Ryan is a PhD student at UMD College Park, and he appreciated living in a city while still being just a MARC ride away from campus.

We rented in Ridgely’s Delight before buying our home in the Patterson Park neighborhood in 2018. I recently joined the Patterson Park Neighborhood Association (PPNA), and I’ve volunteered with the PPNA and the Friends of Patterson Park.

Living a block from the park means that there’s always something to do! Sometimes it’s reading on a bench on a quiet Sunday morning, other times it’s a festival or concert. Either way, the park is part of what makes living in a city so worthwhile.

What’s your connection to Baltimore?
In 2017, I signed up to pour beers at the Patterson Park Brewfest on a total whim. I had a great time meeting neighbors, talking to local brewers, trying new beers, listening to live music, and getting a taste of the events the Friends of Patterson Park offers. My commemorative beer glass is one of my few treasured possessions. I’m glad the Brewfest will continue on; my time at the Brewfest epitomizes what I love about cultivating community in Baltimore.

What do you like about Baltimore?
Early on in living here, I came across someone wearing the “Baltimore: Actually, I like it.” t-shirt. I love how cheeky and unpretentious both that shirt and this city, are. When I first planned to move here, many people I talked to clutched their pearls and their purses, but the longer I’ve lived here, the more I’ve come to know all aspects of city living, And, actually, I like it.

Just look at the Farmer’s Market. A highway overpass in any other city would be a wasteland. But in Baltimore, the overpass is a shelter, the support columns are murals, and the lot fills with local farmers and entrepreneurs hawking their wares. How cool is that?

I love that Baltimore has this underdog edge to it, like it’s not trying too hard to impress anyone while still striving to improve and grow. There are huge challenges facing the city, but creative people are tackling them in equally huge ways. And when they’re not working on improving water quality or securing funding for public schools, these folks are out racing on toilet bowls or finding even more ways to use Old Bay. Baltimore citizens manage to have a sense of urgent responsibility and a sense of humor.

New Baltimoreans should definitely check out:
bmore minimal: I’m a firm believer that our environment has an outsized influence on our well-being. With my home organization business, bmore minimal, I help people curate their spaces and belongings to better support the lives they want to live.

That said, I’m actually just as interested in improving communities as I am in improving homes.

The way we act as consumers isn’t sustainable for our planet or for our wallets, and it rarely addresses the root causes of our discontent: feeling bored, feeling anxious, feeling lonely, or feeling adrift. For that, we need connections and community.

My hope is to help people edit their possessions mainly so they can stop thinking about stuff so much. Once our own houses are in order, we can better focus on the pillars of vibrant communities—equality, fair housing, great schools, independent businesses, access to nature and nutrition, safe streets, civic engagement, etc. Making those things happen requires us to be creators and citizens, not just consumers.

Hence bmore minimal’s motto: less clutter, more community.

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