Indiana Dunes National Park Offers Beach Parking Information Line

With severe shoreline erosion along Lake Michigan and the need for social distancing due to COVID-19, Indiana Dunes National Park announces they will assist the public in finding an open beach with a new telephone line. Recorded messages will alert residents about available parking at National Park beaches and nearby Indiana Dunes State Park.  The information will be updated regularly throughout the day during beach season, between Memorial Day and Labor Day weekends.  The Beach Parking Information Line will begin fielding phone calls Saturday, May 23rd at 9am at 219-395-1003. The National Park Service says the potential for dangerous crowding on beaches increased with the current closure of beach access at Central Avenue and Lake View due to erosion damage. Record-high water levels on Lake Michigan have also resulted in narrower beaches, leaving less room to observe proper social distancing. Information provided by the Beach Parking Information Line can help visitors avoid smaller national park-beaches and parking lots like Porter, Kemil, and Mt. Baldy that tend to fill early on weekends. Access to the beach at Portage Lakefront has also been restored in time for the holiday weekend, and officials say Porter Beach—recently closed due to overcrowding—will reopen for Memorial Day weekend, but the National Park Service town authorities will monitor all beaches closely for overcrowding.