Chesterton Tribune



Pavilion at Portage Lakefront remains open; beach access not possible

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The National Park Service (NPS) is announcing that the Pavilion at Indiana Dunes National Park’s Portage Lakefront and Riverwalk site remains open and safe for use despite the recent erosion of a sand dune directly west of the Pavilion.

NPS reports that while access to the beach is not possible due to the erosion, the Pavilion itself remains safe for public use.

Despite the closure of beach access, all other areas of Portage Lakefront remain open to the public, including the Pavilion, upland trail, riverwalk, and breakwater. Activities such as park programs, weddings, and public meetings can still take place in the building.

“Lake Michigan’s water level remains well above the long-term average,” NPS said. “The higher lake level, in combination with recent storm waves, has resulted in continued erosion and narrower beaches along the Lake Michigan shoreline. The National Park Service will continue to monitor the conditions at Portage Lakefront and along the entire 15 miles of park shoreline. The park plans to reestablish a safe beach access trail at Portage Lakefront in time for the summer season.”

Portage Lakefront, one of the most popular sites in the National Park, is owned by the federal government but jointly operated by the City of Portage and NPS.

“The National Park Service and the City of Portage will continue to work with other partners in seeking a sand nourishment solution for the erosion issues at Portage Lakefront,” NPS said. “Sand nourishment involves placing sand, obtained from other locations, onto eroded beaches. While this method has to be repeated over time, it is known to be the most effective solution and does not cause damage to neighboring stretches of beach like rock walls or other armoring techniques.”

For more information on beach access at Indiana Dunes National Park, call (219) 395-1882 or visit



Posted 11/20/2019




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