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Michigan City Parks & Recreation Department

A Citizen & Visitor’s Guide

Beach Location Marker Project

The MIchigan City Parks & Recreation Department announces it has begun work to dig up and reset its emergency marker signs along the lakefront from stop 1 to stop 13.  It is imperative for safety purposes that each of these markers are visible and not covered in the dunes.  We recognize the importance of our living dunes and we will conduct this operation with the utmost care to limit the disturbance to the dunes.  Upon completion, we will back fill and contour these areas.  If you have any questions regarding this project, please contact us at (219) 873-1506.



2017 Washington Park Annual Parking Sticker Distribution - NEW LOCATION


The Michigan City Park Department will begin issuing the annual Washington Park parking stickers on Monday, April 3, 2017.

Stickers will be distributed at the NORTH POINTE PAVILION in Washington Park, 6 on the Lake, Michigan City, IN 46360. 

 Hours:  Monday through Friday, 9 am to 4 pm (excluding holidays), and Saturdays May 6th through July 29th, 2017.  Saturday hours are 9 am to noon.

Please bring a current vehicle registration; a certificate of registration will not be accepted, it must be a valid original registration card. 

If you own property in the civil city but reside outside of the civil city limits, bring a utility bill or tax bill (the name on the bill must match the name on your vehicle registration) for the city property along with your current vehicle registration and the fee will be waived.


  • FREE - Civil City Residents       
  • $  25  -  LaPorte County Residents
  • $  40  -  Indiana Residents          
  • $100  -  Out of State                 
  • $  23  -  Senior Center member (must show current membership card)


For more information, call 219.873.1506.


shelf ice

This Article Could Save Your Life


By Jeremy Kienitz, MC Parks Recreation Director

Rip Currents and Beach Safety


Visitors come to Washington Park beach to enjoy the natural beauty of Lake Michigan’s coastline.  Some enjoy the beach itself, while others enjoy sun bathing and sights such as the Lighthouse and Chicago skyline.   Michigan City is very fortunate to have such a beautiful attraction and recreational area to spend the summer months with family and friends.  As wonderful as it can be, Lake Michigan still presents a danger to those who visit in the form of rip currents.

Rip currents are powerful, channeled currents of water flowing away from shore.  They can occur at any beach with breaking waves, including Lake Michigan, and they can be deadly.  Rip currents are particularly dangerous for weak or non-swimmers.  Rip current speeds are typically 1-2 feet per second.  However, speeds as high as 8 feet per second have been measured; this is faster than an Olympic swimmer.  Thus, rip currents can sweep even the strongest swimmer out to sea. The following tips could save your life.

  • Swim at a lifeguard protected beach
  • Never swim alone
  • Be cautious at all times!  If in doubt, don’t go out!
  • Obey all instructions and orders from lifeguards.  Lifeguards are trained to identify potential hazards.  Ask a lifeguard about the conditions before entering the water.
  • Stay at least 400 feet away from piers and jetties.  Permanent rip currents often exist alongside these structures.
  • Pay especially close attention to children and elderly when at the beach.  Even in shallow water, wave action can cause loss of footing.

If you are ever caught in a rip current, remain calm to conserve energy and think clearly.  Never try to fight the current or swim against it as you will tire quickly and become fatigued.  To remove yourself from a rip current swim parallel to shore.  When out of the current swim at an angle, away from it, towards the shoreline.

Rip currents cause more than 100 deaths annually in the United States and cause 80% of all rescues by beach lifeguards.  These statistics show the importance of always adhering to warnings and beach closings.  The Washington Park Lifeguard Staff is available for information while on duty Memorial Day through Labor Day.  Please take the opportunity to ask them questions about the conditions prior to entering the water.  It will help keep you safe and could save your life!