Chartwood is a semi-secluded community on the west end of Benfield Boulevard, close to Kinder Farm Park, Chartwell Country Club and St. Andrew’s Pool. The community is close to Route 97 without having to bear too much of the Benfield traffic. Chartwood homes are on both the north and south sides of Benfield Boulevard.
According to “The History of Chartwood, Severna Park, Md.,” written by Ray Robertson, Chartwood dates back to 1954 when the “Merritt brothers and their partners purchased land in what now consists of Fairwinds on the Severn, Chartwell and Chartwood. Prior to this time, there were only scattered homes and farms west of Jumpers Hole Road.”
In the early 1960’s, Harry Meeks purchased land and developed the original Chartwood, and several homebuilders went to work. It’s said that Meeks wanted to name the community West Chartwell but was threatened with a lawsuit by the Merritt brothers. In 1970, Chartwood and Kearney Manor merged under the Chartwood name.
Each year, Chartwood neighbors host a children’s Halloween parade paired with a chili cook-off. There is also a Christmas party, Easter egg hunt, and adult-only activities such as progressive dinners and a brewery tour.
Neighbors look out for one another, and share tools, labor and services. But most of all, they share stories, laughter and even sadness.
Mike and Terry Davis
Residents For 23 Years
Mike and Terry Davis were living in Mount Airy 23 years ago. After a “horrible winter of snow and ice on the mountaintop, we decided it was time for a move to somewhere without so many ups and downs,” Mike said. “Chartwood offered us a nice neighborhood and a great value.”
Mike and Terry looked at several neighborhoods in Severna Park, hoping to find a rancher that met their needs.
Now that they are considered longtime residents, the couple has come to appreciate the Chartwood get-togethers, which include everything from bowling to chili to ice cream socials.
“Our neighbors are friendly and willing to pitch in if needed,” added Mike. “We’ve seen families come and go and watched their children grow up, and then new families have moved in.”
Larry and Lynnley Moore
Residents For 12 Years
Larry and Lynnley Moore met in College Park while attending the University of Maryland. After college, they lived in Annapolis for 13 years before deciding to move to Severna Park in 2007. They wanted to decrease their work commutes and have their children attend Severna Park schools.
“We looked at many neighborhoods but fell in love with Chartwood’s smaller-sized community, beautiful tree-lined streets, lovely homes and friendly people,” Lynnley said. “We also like the people we met when looking for a home, and we fell in love with our current home with a great view of the woods.”
Lynnley said the woods are “beautiful year-round, and we have a large variety of wildlife including foxes, deer, bunnies, hawks and birds.”
The Moore children attended Benfield Elementary and “loved it,” Lynnley said. “We appreciated the strong community involvement, and my kids had great teachers. The talent show was always a favorite every year.”
Neighbors have become a second family for the Moore family.
“Whenever it snows, the Conner family plows the main roads. When power goes out or there are storms, folks check in on one another. People with power offer their homes, showers, hot coffee or a meal to the folks without power,” Lynnley added. “When someone in the community needs support, we have created meal chains, arranged rides, offered home services, and provided transportation.”
Lynnley has held different offices as a community board member and represented Chartwood at Greater Severna Park Council meetings. She also has been on neighborhood committees, coordinated progressive dinners, and hosted Bunco groups. Currently, she is also a chief election judge at Benfield Elementary School during election years.
Jeff and Alexa Cardozo
Residents For Two And A Half Years
Jeff and Alexa Cardoza grew up outside Maryland, but after graduating from Towson University, they decided to make Maryland their home.
“When we decided to buy a home, we knew for certain that we wanted to be in Anne Arundel County,” Alexa said. “The house we bought in Chartwood was actually the first house we looked at. Our realtor, who also lived in Severna Park, presented all the pros of the area. After looking at many other areas, we knew she had read us well and that the Severna Park area was where we wanted to be.”
The Cardozos chose Chartwood for the homes, the neighborhood and the school district, but they plan to stay because of the neighbors and the schools.
“What we love most about Chartwood is that it is a smaller neighborhood within a larger community,” said Alexa. “You feel as if you live in a small town and know most of the neighbors. As newer neighbors, this has allowed us to really get to know most of our neighbors and easily get involved in the events and activities.”
Alexa is an Anne Arundel County Public Schools teacher, so she’s excited her children will be able to attend Benfield Elementary, a National Blue Ribbon School. The Cardozo family already loves Severna Park and their neighbors.
“It is a fun and social neighborhood. Everyone is so welcoming,” Alexa said. “The planned events are great for families and an excellent way to meet your neighbors and become involved.
“Every neighbor in Chartwood has been kind and welcoming,” she added. “As soon as we moved in, we felt we were part of the neighborhood. The neighbors welcome new families and make sure to include everyone in the events. We could not ask for better neighbors.”
Jeff is the treasurer of the homeowners association, and the family participates in as many of the planned events as they can.