Star-Spangled Spectacular to Impact Vehicular Access, Bag Policy at Fort McHenry National Monument

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News Release Date: September 6, 2014

Contact: Mike Litterst, 410-962-4290

Shuttle Access to the Site and Security Check-Points Ensure Visitor Safety

BALTIMORE – As Star-Spangled Spectacular events kick off at Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine kick off this weekend, the National Park Service reminds visitors to plan ahead and be aware of changes to normal park vehicular access and bag policies that will be in place. 

Access to Fort McHenry:
There is no vehicular access to Fort McHenry from September 9-16, due to lack of available parking at the site. Additionally, East Fort Avenue between Andre Street and Fort McHenry will be closed from Wednesday, September 10 at 11:59 p.m. until Monday, September 15 at 7:15 a.m., and there will be no parking in the Locust Point neighborhood during the same time period. Local traffic will be permitted on Fort Avenue, east of Lawrence Street.

Visitors should take public transportation to Fort McHenry from September 9-16: 

  • The free Charm City Circulator, as well as the MTA Route #1, will run from the Inner Harbor to the gates of Fort McHenry National Monument on September 9-10 and September 15-16;on September 11-14, it will drop passengers at East Fort Avenue and Andre Street;it is a one-half-mile walk from the shuttle stop to the entrance to Fort McHenry National Monument. 
  • The free Spectacular Shuttle will run to Fort McHenry (East Fort Avenue and Andre Street) from the Inner Harbor (Light St. and W. Conway St.) from September 12-14. 
  • All public transit will drop visitors along East Fort Avenue at Andre Street;it is a one-half mile walk from the shuttle stop to the entrance to Fort McHenry National Monument. 
  • Accessibility shuttles will drop mobility-impaired visitors at the front gate of Fort McHenry. The MTA mobility shuttle will pick up at Francis Scott Key Elementary and intersection of East Fort Ave. and Andre Street from September 11-14; the Spectacular ADA Shuttle will run from the Inner Harbor to Fort McHenry on September 12-14. Normal MTA accessibility shuttle operations will be in effect on September 9-10. 
  • On Sunday, September 14, the Charm City Circulator will begin operation at 7 a.m. for visitors attending the By Dawn's Early Light bicentennial commemoration of the flag-raising at Fort McHenry. The MTA mobility shuttle will begin operation at 6:15 a.m. 
Hours of operation, transit schedules, and drop-off locations for all shuttles are online

Security Screening / Prohibited Items:
From Thursday, September 11 through Sunday, September 14, a security screening and bag policy is in effect at Fort McHenry for the safety of all visitors. Visitors will be able to carry one clear bag per person, not to exceed the size of a gallon freezer bag and/or a small clutch bag, approximately the size of a hand (exceptions will be made for medically necessary items). No other bags will be permitted. 

Strollers, blankets, sunscreen and bug spray in non-aerosol containers, and ponchos or personal umbrellas are permitted. 

Prohibited items include outside food and beverages, chairs, coolers, weapons, pets, and more. For a complete list of prohibited items, go to Water and food is available on site, and there will be a limited number of chairs are available at Fort McHenry for visitors with mobility impairments or who are otherwise unable to use blankets or stand for extended periods of time. 

The security measures implemented at Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine for the Star-Spangled Spectacular were developed as a collaborative effort by the event's state, local and federal partners, in consultation with the Department of Homeland Security, Baltimore City Police, U.S. Navy, and the United States Secret Service, and are based on best practices currently used at large events and festivals across the United States. 

Detailed information for visitors planning to attend events at Fort McHenry and throughout the city is posted on the Star Spangled Spectacular's website at:


About Fort McHenry National Monument &Historic Shrine
During the Battle of Baltimore, September 13 –14, 1814, the valiant defense of the star-shaped Fort McHenry against the might of the British navy inspired Francis Scott Key to write "The Star-Spangled Banner." The 15 broad stripes and 15 bright stars still fly over the fort 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The fort was used continuously in a variety of ways through World War II. Most famous as the birthplace of our National Anthem, many special activities are planned at Fort McHenry National Monument &Historic Shrine in 2014 to commemorate the Bicentennial of the War of 1812, the United States' second war for independence. Phone: 410-962-4290 Follow us on Facebook at and on Twitter, @FtMcHenryNPS. 

Last updated: February 26, 2015

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2400 East Fort Avenue
Baltimore, MD 21230


(410) 962-4290 x250

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