Chesterton Tribune



DNR a step closer to alcohol sales at Dunes State Park beach

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A restaurant serving alcohol could be established at the Pavilion at Indiana Dunes State Park beach, under a ruling by the Natural Resources Commission (NRC).

On Tuesday, the NRC gave its final approval to the sale and consumption of alcohol beverages “in a defined area”--that is, in the Pavilion--at Dunes State Park.

The NRC previously authorized--at its May 2012 meeting--the Department of Natural Resources to enter negotiations with a potential concessionaire for a restaurant, snack bar, and serve area in the Pavilion.

Alcohol will continue to be prohibited elsewhere at Indiana Dunes State Park.

An Economic Impact Statement on the rule change noted the following: “A lessee or concessionaire would be a private business operation to operate the Pavilion for a restaurant and rental for group sales that would allow for alcohol to be served. There is no comparable business from Chicago to Southwest Michigan that serves food and alcohol in a restaurant within or on Lake Michigan. No impacts should be affected, to other ‘like’ businesses along the Lake Michigan waterfront, by allowing alcohol to be served in this facility.”

In other actions at Tuesday’s meeting, the NRC:

* Dedicated two new nature preserves, Munsee Woods in Delaware County and Trevlac Bluffs in Brown County.

* Gave final adoption to several DNR property rules, including allowing the release of a pet or service animal from its leash in areas authorized by the DNR (such as the new dog park at Fort Harrison State Park), and clarifying that a person using a trail on a DNR property may leave the trail if participating in an activity authorized by a DNR license.

* Preliminarily adopted boating restrictions on designated swimming portions of Lake Michigan: in East Chicago, adjacent to the Jeorse Park Beach Swimming Area; and in Gary, adjacent to the Marquette Park Beach Swimming Area.


Posted 1/22/2014




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