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City News

Lead Paint Removal Program - No Cost Home Renovation

Lead Protection Plan Application (PDF)

Landlord Affordability Agreement (PDF)

Proposed Shoreline Regulations

Click here for more information (PDF)
      - Exhibit A Proposed Amendments as of December 4, 2018 (PDF)

City Hall Closed for Training

The City of Michigan City is announcing that on Thursday, December 6, 2018, City Hall will be closed from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., as the Michigan City Police Department presents an active shooter seminar to all City Hall employees. 

Doors to City Hall will be re-opened to normal business operations at 11:30 a.m.

The City of Michigan City appreciates your patience and understanding during the closure as our City Hall employees take part in this important safety training.

Barker Mansion Events

Christmas Behind the Scenes Tour
Fridays - December 7, 14 & 21st at 7pm

Venture behind the scenes at the 35,000 square-foot Barker Mansion and explore all 38 rooms during this immersive tour. The interpreter-led tour will feature the mansion’s “Christmas Room” which serves as their storehouse for the thousands of ornaments that go into decorating the 160-year-old mansion. Join us for this festive event! Tour lasts two hours and cost is $15 per adult or $10 per senior or youth, ages 15 and under. Reservations will be taken on Eventbrite one month prior to tour date.
Registration is required via Eventbrite or by calling the mansion at (219) 873-1520 x5.

Glowing Lights Night
Saturdays - December 8, 15, 22 and 29th from 4-6pm

Christmas tree lights will be the only source of illumination during Barker Mansion’s popular Glowing Lights Nights. The public is invited to take a self-guided tour of all three floors of the historic home, which has been decorated for the holiday season by local non-profit groups. Cost is $8 per adult and $5 per youth or senior.

Toys of Yesterday
Saturday, December 15, 10 am

Kids are invited to make their own toys this morning. We will look at Catherine Barker’s historic toys and others from the early 1900’s. Then, we will try our hand at making some ourselves. Cost is $2 per child with each accompanying adult free of charge. Registration is required via Eventbrite or by calling the mansion at (219) 873-1520 x5.

The Barker Mansion is located at 631 Washington Street in Michigan City. Visit for details.

Pet & Animal Changes

The City of Michigan City would like to inform our citizens that the Michigan City Controller’s Office, located in City Hall, will no longer service animal tags, reclaim fees or any other business related to pets and animals.

Effective immediately, all pet and animal related business will need to be conducted at the Michigan City Police Department which is located at: 1201 E. Michigan Boulevard.

Transit Triangle, La Porte County Commuters Service Michigan City – City of La Porte – PNW

Michigan City Transit Director Robin Barzoni-Tillman announced today significant changes to the fare structure for the Transit Triangle, as well as a closer relationship between the Transit Triangle and Michigan City Transit.

Effective November 1, 2018 fares for the Transit Triangle will be reduced to $1 for a full-fare ride, and 50 cents for seniors, students, and disabled riders. A calendar month pass will be available for $20 for regular riders, and $10 for seniors, students, and disabled riders. In addition to the fare reduction, passes from the two systems will be accepted for travel on both MC Transit and Transit Triangle. A free transfer will be available for one-way travel from one system to the other.

“Adjusting the fare structure in this way means that Michigan City Transit riders will be able to ride the Triangle for no additional cost,  Students traveling to Purdue Northwest will see a significant fare reduction, and La Porte residents will be able to access all Michigan City stops for one fare, including the South Shore, Washington Park Beach, shopping, restaurants, the Social Security office, and the Blue Chip Casino.

The Transit Triangle service is made possible by Federal Transit funding and local match contributions from the City of Michigan City (Ron Meer, Mayor), City of La Porte (Mark Krentz, Mayor), La Porte County (Rich Mrozinski, President, Board of Commissioners) and Purdue University Northwest (Thomas Keon, Chancellor). 

2018 Coat Drive & Giveaway

The City of Michigan City would like to announce that the annual coat drive is now underway.  Citizens can drop off new, and or, gently worn coats and snow suits at Concord Cleaners.  Concord Cleaners will clean and then deliver the coats and snow suits to the Michigan Township Trustees Office where they will be available, to those in need, beginning immediately.  The coat drive will continue throughout the winter season.   

“There is a large need for this yearly campaign in our community; I would like to thank our citizens for their generosity and also Michigan Township Trustee Rodney Washington and his office for their willingness to get involved and their help in addressing the needs of our residents.”  “My office recently spoke with the Trustee’s office and they informed us that they have racks of coats already out and ready” said Mayor Meer. 

“I would also like to personally thank Concord Cleaners for their generous offer to clean, at no cost, any coats and snowsuits that you wish to donate to the coat drive” said Mayor Meer.  “Simply drop off your coats at Concord Cleaners (3231 Franklins St.) and say they are for the coat campaign, and Concord Cleaners will clean them and deliver them to the Michigan Township Trustees Office weekly.”

This is the seventh year in a row, the City of Michigan City has partnered with Michigan Township Trustee Rodney Washington and his Office to move the distribution of coats from City Hall to the Michigan Township Trustees Office located at 2601 East Michigan Boulevard.   Hours of operation are: 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m., Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday.  You can also reach the trustees office at: 874-5201.

OPO patrols out throughout the City of Michigan City

The Michigan City Police Department will have OPO patrols out throughout the City of Michigan City.  Officer will be concentrating on Seat Belt Violations, Speeding, Following Too Closely, Texting and other distracted driving violations.

Officers will also be working the weekends for the Halloween parties and activities.  The Michigan City Police Department would encourage using a designated driver or seek other transportation options.

As a reminder, Michigan City Trick or Treat is Wednesday, October 31, 2018, from 5:00 PM – 7:00 PM.  Participating residents are asked to turn on their porch light during this time.  Motorists are asked to drive with extra caution during this time and watch for children.

The OPO Grant has allowed the Michigan City Police Department to add extra patrol Officers on the street, Officers working the grant can also assist with several calls for service.

Officers of the Michigan City Police Department will continue working the state Traffic Safety grants, including the countywide DUI Task Force to improve the Quality of Life to the citizens of Michigan City.

Det/Sgt. Ken Havlin
Grant Coordinator
Michigan City Police Department

Registration now open for Michigan City Adult Softball League

The Michigan City Parks & Recreation Department announces that registration is now open for the Michigan City 2018 Adult Volleyball Co-Ed & Women’s Leagues.  Rosters are due Friday, October 19th.  The season begins Tuesday, October 23rd.  For additional information, contact Abigale at the Michigan City Parks & Recreation Department at 219-873-1506.

Michigan City Urban Enterprise Association Announces New Business Start-Up Grant Program

The Michigan City Urban Enterprise Association (MCUEA) is pleased to announce a new Business Start-Up Grant ($1,500 Max).

This grant is intended for new businesses that are less than one year old.

It is specifically designed to help promote small businesses located within the Urban Enterprise Zone boundaries and to assist in the overall plan for the City by promoting visual improvements and structural integrity, boosting the quality of product and enhancing the customer experience. The grant is available for signage, machinery and equipment used in their business and for building improvements to the exterior and interior of the property.

The MCUEA will reimburse 50% of the eligible costs not to exceed $ 1,500.

The applicant must fill out the 2018 Business Start-Up Grant Program ($1,500 Max) application by December 31, 2018 and meet the requirements set forth in the application to be eligible. There is $ 20,000 appropriated for this program.

The application must be mailed or emailed to:

Michigan City Urban Enterprise Association
P.O. Box 43
Michigan City, IN 46350


Please contact Diane Wilczewski, Director at 219-561-6991 if you have questions concerning this grant.

Click here to view and print grant application (PDF).

Sullair Michigan City Campus Renamed to 1 Sullair Way

In partnership with the City of Michigan City, Sullair, an industry leader in innovative compressed air solutions since 1965, announced its address is changing for only the third time in its 53-year history. In cooperation with Michigan City, the entry road from Michigan Boulevard to the Sullair campus has been named Sullair Way. Effective immediately, the Sullair Michigan City campus address becomes 1 Sullair Way, Michigan City, Indiana 46360.

“We are proud of our longstanding relationship with Sullair and now Hitachi,” said Michigan City Mayor Ron Meer at an employee celebration attended by nearly 1,200 Sullair and Hitachi employees and family members. “A great deal of work went into this, and we are proud to recognize the impact Sullair continues to have on our community.”  

The ceremonial announcement of the new Sullair address occurred August 3rd during a celebration held on the Sullair campus recognizing the one year anniversary of Sullair becoming A Hitachi Group Company.  Mayor Meer was joined by Hitachi Executive Vice President Masakazu “Mike” Aoki, Sullair President and Chief Executive Officer Jack Carlson and Sullair Chief Operating Officer Charlie Takeuchi to unveil the new street sign marking the intersection of Sullair Way and Michigan Blvd.

Sullair established its presence in Michigan City in 1965 at 500 North Carroll Avenue. In 1969, Sullair moved to its current campus at 3700 East Michigan Boulevard in Michigan City, now recognized as 1 Sullair Way.

Reflecting on the occasion and recognition, Charlie Takeuchi, Chief Operating Officer of Sullair, added, “Hitachi is very keen on expanding the Sullair business in Michigan City. We look forward to continuing to positively impact the local community. In the past year alone, we have added more than 110 new employees, and we look forward to continuing to work closely with the City as we grow.”

About Sullair
Since 1965, Sullair has developed and manufactured air compressors with proven reliability and wear-free durability. Sullair is globally recognized as a leading manufacturer of air compressors for use in manufacturing, oil and gas operations, food processing, construction and more. Sullair has manufacturing capabilities in Michigan City, Indiana; and Shenzhen and Suzhou, China; as well as a JV (IHI-Sullair) based in Suzhou. For more information, visit Sullair is A Hitachi Group Company.

About Hitachi, Ltd.
Hitachi, Ltd. (TSE: 6501), headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, delivers innovations that answer society’s challenges, combining its operational technology, information technology, and products/systems. The company’s consolidated revenues for fiscal 2017 (ended March 31, 2018) totaled 9,368.6 billion yen ($88.4 billion). The Hitachi Group is an innovation partner for the IoT era, and it has approximately 307,000 employees worldwide. Through collaborative creation with customers, Hitachi is deploying Social Innovation Business using digital technologies in a broad range of sectors, including Power/Energy, Industry/Distribution/Water, Urban Development, and Finance/Social Infrastructure/Healthcare. For more information on Hitachi, please visit the company's website at

Visclosky Announces FAA Grant Award for the Michigan City Municipal-Phillips Field Airport

Congressman Visclosky announced today that the Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has awarded a grant for the Michigan City Municipal-Phillips Field Airport.

The $339,722 grant award supports updates to the existing airport layout plan and an ongoing environmental study to evaluate any potential environmental impacts related to relocating U.S. Highway 20 to improve the runway safety area.

Congressman Pete Visclosky stated, “I congratulate Mayor Ron Meer and the Michigan City Board of Aviation Commissioners for successfully identifying and utilizing this federal resource.  Because of your good work and vision, Michigan City will continue to lead the way to draw new businesses, economic activity, and good-paying jobs to our region.”

Michigan City Mayor Ron Meer stated, “I am excited that the Michigan City Board of Aviation Commissioners was able to secure this federally funded grant.  Michigan City continues to see a tremendous amount of economic development and redevelopment ongoing in our community.  We are fortunate to have a wonderful airport in our backyard and this grant will allow us the ability to make runway improvements, which are necessary upgrades to compete in this fast-paced, global economy.”

For additional information on the FAA grant program, click here.

Creating the Poster Child: Michigan City’s Journey to the Best City in the Midwest

The City of Michigan City is excited to welcome back Roger Brooks for a public presentation on the progress of the Plaza.  Roger will also assess the City on our progress to implement our Branding Master Plan.

For all those who are participating in and tracking the progress of the Michigan City Comeback, this is a MUST ATTEND event.

Please join us August 9th at 6:00pm for hors d’oeuvres, comments by Mayor Ron Meer and then the 6:30pm presentation by Roger Brooks. The event will be held at the future site of the Plaza at 7th and Franklin.

The Plaza is a key component to the revitalization of Michigan City. This effort will be possible with the development of a public assembly space, or plaza, that will be programmed 250 or more days a year with activity that can be enjoyed by ALL residents of Michigan City, regardless of age, gender, income or any other factor. Nearly all activity will be open to the public and free of charge. Some of the plaza options include public restrooms, a 5,000-7,000-square foot splash pad, 8,000-10,000-square foot ice skating rink, a permanent stage, lighting and sound system, abundant seating, raised planters, room for vendors and Farmers Market events, space to host events and much more. This is a monumental project to help create a vibrant city center that can be enjoyed by all.

Michigan City is becoming the incredible poster child for how to make things happen for ALL Midwest cities and a model for other communities to follow. This is just the beginning of an incredibly bright future for the people of Michigan City and your downtown.

Join us as we rally as a City to make the Plaza a reality!

Michigan City Mayor Ball & Golf Outing Proceeds

At the June 19, 2018 Michigan City Common Council meeting, a former City of Michigan City employee made false accusations and statements claiming that the Mayor’s political campaign fund has been the beneficiary of the proceeds from his golf outings and Mayoral Ball’s. 

In Ron Meer’s tenure as Mayor, which is now in year seven, there have been (5) Golf Outings and (3) Mayoral Ball’s and none of the money raised by these events has ever gone into the Mayor’s political campaign fund.  The truth is, the proceeds from these (8) events, which total $176,341.36, have gone to help many local organizations and non-for-profits.  Below is a breakdown of each event, the year it was held, the beneficiary and the amount of money each beneficiary received. 

Mayoral Ball’s:

2014--Public Art Committee ($15,900) and Commission on the Social Status of African-American Males ($15,900)
2015--North Central Community Action Agency ($20,790) and Commission on Women ($20,790)
2017--Michigan City Promise Scholarship ($46,181.84)
Golf Outings:

2013--Essence Rare ($9,183.77)
2014--Michigan City Area Schools ($12,492.79)
2015--Commission on the Social Status of African-American Males ($5,940) and Michigan City Police Youth Leadership Academy ($5,940)
2016--Young People’s Theatre ($6,335) and Michigan City Mainstreet Preservation & Education Foundation ($6,335)
2017--Soul Steppers Drill Team ($5,276.48) and the Michigan City High School Athletic Department ($5,276.48)

Mayor Ron Meer will host his 6th annual golf outing on Friday, September 14th at Michigan City Municipal Golf Course.  This year’s proceeds will benefit the Michigan City Zoological Society and Homeward Bound.  Those interested in sponsorship opportunities can contact the Mayor’s Office at: 219-873-1400 Ext. 8, for more information. 

US Hwy 12 Train Track Crossing Repairs

Due to train track crossing repairs being performed by Chicago South Shore in cooperation with INDOT, the City of Michigan City is announcing that the Chicago South Shore crossing, located near the NIPSCO west gate, on US Highway 12, will be closed beginning at 7:00 a.m., on Thursday, June 7, 2018.  The crossing is expected to reopen on Monday, June 11, 2018, but the length of closure may vary depending on track time, equipment and/or weather-related issues.

Detour signs will be put in place.  The City of Michigan City appreciates your cooperation during the repair process.

Local Hiring Registry Update

The Michigan City Human Rights Department is updating its Local Hiring Registry.  We are seeking qualified residents with documented experience in the building and construction trades that have an interest in working on municipally funded projects. Those individuals with union affiliation are encouraged to submit their information, including a resume along with copies of any training records.  All previous information will be purged from the hiring registry.

For further information, contact Carl Ridle, Director of the Human Rights Department, 100 E. Michigan Boulevard, Michigan City, IN 46360, 219-873-1429 ext. 2019 or via email at:

The Human Rights Department provides and promotes equal opportunity to the citizens of Michigan City by enforcing the human rights, equal employment rights and affirmative action ordinances.  It is a mission of the Human Rights Department to promote education while advocating for tolerant and anti-discriminatory attitudes and actions.

Ohio Street Reconstruction Project

The City of Michigan City would like to announce that The Ohio Street Reconstruction Project, between Country Road 400 North and US Highway 20, is scheduled to begin on Monday, April 30, 2018.  Traffic along that stretch of Ohio Street will be reduced to one lane, in the northbound direction with a posted detour for southbound traffic.  All necessary measures will be taken to maintain access for local businesses and residents.

This project, which is scheduled to be substantially completed by Friday, November 30, 2018, will include the installation of new utilities and storm sewers.  Future notifications and updates will be announced as construction moves forward.

The City of Michigan City appreciates your patience during this project.

Michigan City Transit Route #3 Detour

Monday, April ,30 2018 Reith-Riley Construction will be setting up phase 1 of the Ohio Street reconstruction project. This phase will close the Southbound (Westside) of Ohio Street from US 20 to 400 North (Kieffer Rd). All traffic on Ohio Street will be one way only (Northbound) until further notice, approximately the end of September.

During this phase of construction, Michigan City Transit route #3 will be unable to travel south on Ohio Street and unable to access the bus stops on Ohio Street between St. Johns Road and Kieffer Road.

Routes #3 service detour:

Est. Time

:58 - Marquette Mall to south Franklin Ave. (US 421)
:02 - Franklin Ave. (US 421) left onto Village Road west

:03 - Village Road left onto Southwind Drive south
:05 - Southwind Drive left onto Kieffer Road.

During construction expect route service delays.

Students Create Mural at Barker MansionStudents Create Mural at Barker Mansion

Michigan City High School art students recently created a mural in Barker Mansion’s lower level. The artwork features a Haskell and Barker Car Company logo from the 1800’s, which was found on letterhead in the mansion’s archives. Students completing the mural were senior Kara Davis, and sophomores Alexis Reynolds and Armani Torrance-Worlds. Art instructors Deanna Ehrhardt and Sue Cleveland supervised the project.

“Painting at Barker Mansion was a very positive experience. The employees were very friendly which made the atmosphere welcoming, and I was also fortunate to be able to roam the historical halls at the mansion,” said Reynolds, who also volunteers at the mansion on weekends. 

The mural is a focal point within the newly created exhibit space at the mansion. Both Davis and Torrance-Worlds expressed how much they appreciated marking a mark on history within the mansion’s walls. The exhibit project in its entirety is slated for completion in early summer. A grand opening reception will be announced at a later date.

The Barker Mansion is located at 631 Washington Street in Michigan City. Visit for details.



Michigan City to Host SiteLink Forum

August 1-3, 2018, the Economic Development Corporation Michigan City (EDCMC), is partnering with Webster Global Site Selectors to host the SiteLink conference at Blue Chip Casino, Hotel, and Spa. Sponsored by several Economic Development Organizations in Northern Indiana, Southwestern Michigan, and private sector companies, SiteLink will convene a forum of seven internationally recognized site selectors who will make presentations on their areas of expertise. Site Selectors will meet with attendees one-on-one to provide feedback and advice on business recruitment strategies. There will be a variety of networking events, which provide individuals the opportunity to build relationships with the site selectors and regional leaders in Economic Development. Site selectors are specialists hired by companies to evaluate needs and make recommendations on the best places for business expansion or relocation.

The conference’s one-on-one meetings help attendees to take away best practices to implement in their communities and learn from Site Selectors on what they are looking for in communities. It is an opportunity to familiarize site selectors with what their community has to offer and move the community to the top of the list. Similar events occur a handful of times each year at various cities across the country in Denver, Chicago, and Orlando. What is unique about SiteLink is that it is being held outside of a major city and will specifically address the challenges of business recruitment in smaller communities.

The Economic Development Corporation Michigan City is pleased to be hosting with several Gold sponsors that include Valparaiso Chamber of Commerce, La Porte County Office of Economic Development, Lake County IN Economic Alliance, and Webster Global Site Selectors, the firm primarily hosting the conference. It is a great opportunity for the communities around Northern Indiana and the Midwest to meet with site selectors and for site selectors to learn more about what our region has to offer. Site Selectors will also have an opportunity to take a closer look at Northern Indiana.
More information about the site selectors, list of all sponsors and attending the event can be found at

Members Advantage Credit Union donates $1,500 to Michigan City Salvation Army

Members Advantage Credit Union (MACU) recently donated $1,500 to Michigan City’s Salvation Army. The money will help further the Salvation Army’s mission in Michigan City, which includes, among other outreaches, helping feed nearly 800 local families. 

Frank Beachnau, MACU President said, “It’s a privilege to be able to help facilitate donations that make such an impact on people’s lives. We pride ourselves on being community-focused, and it’s this kind of outreach that helps us put that focus into action.” 

Bob Havens, MACU Executive Vice President, added, “This is one example of why we are so proud to be a credit union. We are able to offer the same products and services as the big banks but still maintain our local community focus.” 

Members Advantage Credit Union is a locally managed, nonprofit, full-service financial institution. Open to anyone who lives or works in LaPorte, Porter or Lake County, Members Advantage has locations in Michigan City and Portage. For more information, call 1-877-874-6943 or visit

Michigan City Launches New Community Website,

Michigan City, IN--The City of Michigan City, Indiana is proud to announce the launch of

As a major digital focalpoint of the ‘Create. Play. Repeat.’ campaign, this new website is an exciting interactive way to promote a unique lifestyle that defines the cultural resurgence currently happening around Michigan City, from Lake Michigan to Patriot Park.

Visitors to will find ever-growing listings of creators, events, activities, and more focused on enabling residents and visitors alike to customize and maximize their Michigan City experience.

At its core, the ‘Create. Play. Repeat.’ movement is fueled by artists, small businesses, and community organizations, all of whom are playing a part in the process. ‘Create’ showcases arts, artisans, and builders of all kinds who are establishing the visual essence of the city. ‘Play’ illustrates the countless attractions, recreation options, signature events, and anything else that allows visitors and locals alike to experience what Michigan City has to offer. ‘Repeat’ embodies the overall effort of the city to develop a lifestyle surrounding an engaging and exciting community.

“Visiting is a great way for anyone in Michigan City – and beyond – to discover new experiences from every corner of our city,” said Michigan City Mayor Ron Meer. “I think this website will play an important role in the revitalization of Michigan City.”

Proposed Storm Water & Drainage Fee

After four public workshops, Mayor Ron Meer has decided to not move forward with the potential storm water and drainage fee increase that was being considered by his administration.

Over the past few weeks, the Mayor and his office have received numerous phone calls, letters and posts to social media, which have for the most part, been against any fee increase.  Mayor Meer respects the public hearing process and values the thoughts and opinions of his constituents. 

Mayor Meer’s administration, along with the Michigan City Sanitary District administration, will continue to look for alternative funding sources which will still be needed to address and fix the storm water and drainage problems highlighted during the public hearings.

Mayor Meer’s administration will continue their commitment to protecting the environment while also working to provide the residents of Michigan City with a high quality of life.

Washington Park Zoo Sets New Attendance Record

Washington Park Zoo Sets New Attendance RecordThe Washington Park Zoo has set a new record for attendance in 2017, up 2.6% from our last record season which was set in 2016.  As of the first week of September 2017, a total of 87,497 guests have visited our furry, feathered and scaly friends (which is 2,273 more guests than at the end of last year!)   While many of the zoo attendees came from Michigan City, about 88% were from out of town and their impact on the local economy is  estimated at $6 million.

Washington Park Zoo closed out 2014 by unveiling new branding for the zoo which focused on making sure that each animal has the best possible care and that every guest has a memorable zoo experience.  One of our main goals was to ensure our guests not only see the animals, but have a chance to connect with them on some level as well because guests that understand about the habitat, diet, and behaviors of an animal appreciate their zoo visits even more.   Education is an integral part of our zoo and helps to spread our message of wildlife conservation by engaging guests in fun, interactive programs that help foster stewards of wildlife.  Our programs include special events, summer camps, outreach programs, in house programs, tours, scout programs, and more.

Since 2015, the Zoo has been moving forward with our 5 year strategic plan, which has enabled us to continue upgrading exhibits, buildings, and grounds. With so much done and yet so much left to do, we are gearing up to launch a major “Roaring Wild for the Zoo” fundraising campaign.  The campaign is going to focus on raising funds to modernize some of the major exhibits like the historic Monkey Island and the Big Cat Habitats.  Monkey Island which was built in 1932, and the Big Cat house which was built in 1975, are not in line with our zoological practices of today. We want the public to know that “we don’t like them either” and that this campaign will help us update these habitats, as well as others.

Washington Park Zoo Sets New Attendance Record 2018 will mark the 90th anniversary of the Washington Park Zoo and to celebrate we are planning a fun filled season.  The Zoo has a long and rich community history beginning with our start in 1928 and our WPA (Works Progress Administration) construction in the 1930’s.  To mark this significant milestone, a variety of activities will be offered to visitors to commemorate the lasting effects the Zoo has had on Michigan City and the surrounding community and beyond.

The Washington Park Zoo is also dedicated to being a sanctuary for exotic animals in need of a safe home. Some of the zoo’s residents have been misplaced pets that proved to be too wild or were confiscated as illegally owned.  Some have suffered injuries that would make life in the wild impossible and others were removed by the DNR.  In all cases the residents are given the best environments that our staff can provide for their health and mental enrichment needs.  Our Staff is dedicated to the health and welfare of the animals in our care and their relatives in the wild.

If anyone is interested in helping with our campaign, please contact the Zoo to find out more about the projects.  Every dime counts and the contributions made to this project will be quite tangible; the evidence of “before and after” will be profound. The Zoo will also be offering “Zoo–nique” awards to schools, classes, clubs and even businesses who want to contribute with their own fundraising challenges like coin wars, bake sales or blue jean donation days.   All donations are tax deductible and will be directly reinvested in the zoo.  

Approximately 200 animals call the Washington Park Zoo home.  We are open daily from 10am to 4pm until October 31st. Regular admission is $7 for adults, $6 for senior citizens and children ages 3-11, and 2 and under are free.

For more information about the Washington Park Zoo, please visit the Zoo on Facebook or at

Washington Park Zoo Sets New Attendance Record   Washington Park Zoo Sets New Attendance Record

Michigan City Awarded $650,000 to Improve Trail Creek

The Michigan City Sanitary District has been awarded a $650,000 grant for the Cheney Run Wetland Project. The grant, awarded by Sustain Our Great Lakes, will help the City create approximately five acres of wetlands on Trail Creek to manage and treat stormwater from the Cheney Run stormwater sewer system.  The wetlands will improve water quality in Trail Creek and Lake Michigan, increase recreation opportunities, and improve habitat for animals and plants.

“This project will help advance multiple goals of the Sustain Our Great Lakes program,” said Todd Hogrefe, Central Region Director for the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.  “The new wetlands will benefit the local community by increasing stormwater storage and reducing harmful stormwater runoff, while at the same time providing many fish and wildlife species with more of the habitat they need.”  Sustain Our Great Lakes, administered by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, receives funding and other support from ArcelorMittal, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Forest Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service.  Significant program funding is provided by the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, a federal program designed to protect, restore, and enhance the Great Lakes ecosystem. Additional Sustain Our Great Lakes information on grant awards can be found here

With the grant funding, the Michigan City Sanitary District, in collaboration with the Delta Institute and Alliance for the Great Lakes, will install 5 acres of wetlands that will reduce runoff from storm events, which carries harmful pollution into waterways.  Runoff pollution flows off the land in the Cheney Run watershed during storm events and into Trail Creek and, ultimately Lake Michigan.

When completed the project will benefit Trail Creek, Lake Michigan, and the quality of life of Michigan City residents by:

  • Improving Trail Creek & Lake Michigan Water qualityThe wetland will help to manage an estimated 37.5 million gallons of storm water each year, reducing the amount of pollutants such as sediment, E. coli, and nutrients entering Trail Creek & Lake Michigan. 
  • Increasing Recreation OpportunitiesNew trails will be created as part of the project, connecting nearby neighborhoods and existing trails, and will include new fishing access point an a new kayak launch on Trail Creek.
  • Improving Critical Coastal Habitat New high quality wetland habitat will help coastal Indiana’s animals and plants survive and thrive.  And, improved water quality and habitat in Trail Creek is critical to protecting the City’s famous Salmon and Steelhead Trout runs.

“The Cheney Run Wetland Project is another one of the many projects that we are implementing to improve the local environment for our residents and visitors,” said Mayor Ron Meer.

Several partner groups are also involved in the project, including the Alliance for the Great Lakes, Delta Institute, and the Trail Creek Watershed Partnership.  Partner groups will support Michigan City in planning and managing the overall project.  Moreover, they will engage residents and neighbors of the future wetlands site in identifying how the community plans to use, enjoy, and care for the site’s future recreation amenities.

Michigan City is also currently awaiting news on an additional $500,000 grant request from the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative to help fund additional pieces of this project.

Friendship Botanic Gardens Is Asking For The Community's Help To Locate Historical Pictures of the Gardens

Friendship Botanic Gardens (FBG) has a storied history spanning many decades, and now we’re commemorating our rich legacy by publishing a book of photographs and stories that will provide readers a window into the remarkable past of FBG. The FBG Board of Directors is asking for your help in locating old photographs taken in the Gardens in the 1930’s, 40’s, 50’s or 60’s.  

The Gardens held a very prominent place in the lives of Laporte County residents in the mid-twentieth century, and many members of the local community may have historical pictures from the heyday of Friendship Botanic Gardens stored in their attics and basements. If you have images from these bygone eras, please contact us at 219-878-9885 or and help us bring the history of the Gardens to life for a whole new generation of visitors from Laporte County and beyond!"

Children's Art Scholarships Available

Children's Art Scholarships AvailableMAC (Michigan City Public Art Committee) is offering children’s art scholarship to qualified Michigan City children.

The Michigan City Public Art Committee, created in 2011 by the Michigan City City Council, has established a scholarship fund to assist Michigan City children in taking art instruction.

Visual art classes or individual art instruction for qualified children between 5 and 18 years of age will be funded. The maximum grant request per individual is $200. Funds will be available for instruction in painting, drawing, printmaking, sculpture, ceramics, collage, crafts such as beading, mosaic work and weaving, art camps or any combination of these taught by a legitimate instructor. Continuing this year is the youth glassblowing workshop with artist and instructor Ian Osborne that will be given at Quality Beat in Michigan City. The committee will not fund music, writing, dance, or drama instruction. 

Applicants must show financial need and take instruction from an art provider located in the Michigan City city limits. The deadline for applying is at least 30 days before the instruction is scheduled to start. Applications are available at the Visit Michigan City LaPorte, Marquette Mall, 4073 S. Franklin St., Michigan City, IN. Submission can be made to Jane Daley at the location or you can contact her via email and the applications will be sent to you.

You can find art classes for children at the Lubeznik Center for the Arts  or Ian Osborn, Glass Flameworking Artist & Instructor.

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Free Smoke Alarms

The American Red Cross, along with the Michigan City Fire Department, are sponsoring HOME FIRE PREPAREDNESS AND SAFETY. Free Smoke Alarms will be installed in homes to keep families safe. If you are interested and would like to have up to three free smoke alarms installed in your home and receive fire preparedness information to keep your family safe, please contact the American Red Cross of Northwest Indiana at 219-756-5360.

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Transit Tringle PNW Campus Bus Stop

Effective January 1, 2017 Transit Triangle Commuter Route Buses will no longer be stopping at the PNW Schwarz Hall. The New Bus Stop location will be in front of the Dworkin Complex.

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Looking for the 421 South Franklin Street South Gateway Plan?

Are you seeking more information on the 421 South Franklin Street South Gateway Plan? Click here to find the plan document (PDF, 307MB).

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Seeking Public Input on Parks Master Plan

The Michigan City Parks and Recreation Department is seeking PUBLIC INPUT for our 5-year Master Plan.

Take the survey online. Click here for the 2017-2021 Michigan City Parks Department Master Plan Online Survey.

Or, download th survey and fax, mail or e-mail it in. Click here for a PDF of the 2017-2021 Michigan City Parks Department Master Plan Survey.

Surveys are also located at the Park Office, The Michigan City Senior Center, The Washington Park Zoo, The Michigan City Golf Course, The Michigan City Public Library, LaPorte County Convention and Visitors’ Bureau, and Mayor Meer’s office in City Hall.

The Michigan City Parks and Recreation Department greatly appreciates your time and input.

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Michigan City Launches Official Social Media Presence

Four new social media pages launching today will provide new ways to interact with and promote the community. Each one will offer a different experience and a different way to show off “#myMichiganCity.”

Initiated by the Michigan City Redevelopment Commission, these pages will support local businesses, bolster economic development, create awareness and excitement for local events, and foster a strong online community. The effort will build on interest already generated by existing Michigan City social media presences, such as the Facebook pages of the Uptown Arts District, the Parks and Recreation Department, and many others.

Don Babcock, Vice President of the Michigan City Redevelopment Commission said, “The Redevelopment Commission is investing tens of millions of dollars to help revitalize our great city. A critical part of that effort is to help existing and new businesses thrive. This initiative will help build pride in our community and help sustain our momentum for the next generation.”

The four pages will consist of two separate Facebook pages, an Instagram account, and an official city LinkedIn page. The Discover Michigan City Facebook page will promote local businesses, events, and accomplishments. The Michigan City Resident Updates page will be home to announcements relevant to Michigan City residents. The Discover Michigan City Instagram account will share photos focused on food and drink, arts and culture, as well as great shopping and events. The LinkedIn page will build the City’s image as an excellent place to do business, reaching the professional community in and outside the City. Readers may “like” and “follow” the pages by visiting these links online.

A 16-member Social Media Advisory Council has overseen development of the social media launch and will oversee the content posted to each page. City Councilman and Social Media Advisory Council member Richard Murphy said, “We can bring the stunning visual imagery of our natural resources, the energy of the renaissance occurring in arts and culture in our downtown, and the many positive community efforts we have going on across our city right now to create a powerful online presence that will help Michigan City economically, and improve its image to residents and visitors alike.”

In the coming weeks, workshops will be announced to help businesses and organizations optimize their use of social media, support each other’s efforts online, and promote the City in general.

#myMichiganCity Program Offers Discounts & Prizes

The #myMichiganCity program will promote local businesses and encourage participation from residents and visitors alike. Social media users who post using the #myMichiganCity hashtag, and “check in” or “mention” specific businesses on any social network may earn discounts at participating businesses, plus enter for a chance to win prizes. Julia Nielsen, a Social Media Advisory Council member, says, "We look forward to supporting the City's new social media campaign and are excited to be a part of such an excellent community."

Nielsen's eclectic boutique, The Closet by Franklin Vintage, will offer a 10% discount as part of the program. Other participating businesses include Arturo’s Baked Goods & More, Burn ‘Em Brewing, Hoity-Toity, The Great Escape Spa & Art Shop, At The Beach Swimwear Boutique, Finders Keepers Consignment LLC, Threadbenders Quilt Shop, Maple City Roasters, Urban Soles Inc, and Beach Bum Jewels.

Residents and visitors using the #myMichiganCity hashtag anywhere in the City may also enter for a chance to win prizes, including a $50 gift card for Lighthouse Premium Outlets, a one-year family membership to the Lubeznik Center for the Arts, a one-night stay at Blue Chip Casino Hotel & Spa, a complimentary wine tasting for six with Perfect Pairing appetizers at Shady Creek Winery, and two VIP Passes for the Great Lakes Grand Prix provided by the LaPorte County Convention & Visitors Bureau. The drawing entry form is online at

Any business can join the program at any time by visiting To help businesses advertise their incentives, customizable, printable table tents are also available for download at the website.

Help spread the word about our great city! Use #myMichiganCity to show your civic pride. Follow, like, and interact on the Michigan City Resident Updates Facebook page, Discover Michigan City Facebook page, Discover Michigan City Instagram page, and The City of Michigan City LinkedIn page.

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Envision Washington Park

Envision Washington ParkMichigan City Parks & Recreation recently launched ENVISION WASHINGTON PARK. This is a community-based planning process to create a new master plan for Washington Park. Get involved and help envision a better Washington Park!

As part of the Park Department Master Plan, the Board and Staff are developing a Washington Park Master Plan, which will provide recommendations for improvements over a five-year period. Washington Park is the biggest and best-positioned lakefront in the region, serving the Chicago and Indianapolis metropolitan areas and everyone in between. As the centerpiece of the Lake Michigan Gateway, opportunities exist to create a world class, eco-recreation destination and catalyze development within the downtown Michigan City area. By planning for the future of Washington Park, the Board and Staff aim to create a regional destination that fosters year-round recreation opportunities, enriching programs and events, and improves the quality of life for residents, visitors and future generations.


We are looking forward to a great community conversation on the revitalization of Washington Park through the 2016 Master Plan process!

Click here for a printable flyer (PDF).

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Changes to Hand Gun Permit Process

The Michigan City Police Department is announcing that changes have been made to the hand gun permit process due to recent implementation by the Indiana State Police. Those interested in obtaining an application must do so on-line via the Indiana State Police website, which is located at or at the Michigan City Police Department website at

For additional information, please click here.  

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Michigan City Crime Map

A crime mapping tool used by law enforcement agencies across Northwest Indiana to track and solve everything from car break-ins to homicides can now be accessed online by the public. Michigan City's crime data is now part of the Regional Crime Report available online at Click here to access the Crime Report online for Michigan City.

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Looking for Information on the Michigan City Lake Michigan Gateway Implementation Strategy?

Are you seeking more information on the Michigan City Lake Michigan Gateway Implementation Strategy? Click here to learn more from the Hitchcock Design Group, the team commissioned by the City to design the implementation strategy.

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Cheney Run Floodplain

Mayor Meer has made available the following documents related to the Cheney Run Floodplain:

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Texting and Driving - $150.00 FINE - A Simple Explanation

Cell phone use - especially texting - has become so ingrained in society that far too many people ignore the NO TEXTING AND DRIVING LAW.

The Michigan City Police are noticing more and more of this on a regular basis and now with the busy shopping season and fast approaching dangerous driving weather upon us and we are warning citizens of not only the dangers yet the fact that citations will be issued.

57 percent of Americans view their cellphones as key to their social life, and most view texting as a vital feature. Yet to mix this activity with driving is statistically extremely dangerous.

  • Five seconds is the average time a driver’s eyes are off the road while texting. When traveling 55 mph that is enough time to cover the length of a football field.
  • In 2011, at least 23 percent of auto collisions involved cell phones, equaling 1.3 million crashes.
  • At any given daylight moment across America, about 660,000 drivers are using cell phones or manipulating electronic devices while driving. IC 9-21-8-0.5 

Specifically, the Indiana distracted driving law  (IC 9-21-8-59) prohibits drivers from typing a text message, transmitting the message or reading an electronic mail message. This also means all drivers regardless of age are prohibited from texting or surfing on the internet even when stopped for a traffic light.

Cell Phones
Drivers under 18 – are prohibited from using cell phones (handheld or hands-free) while driving. PERIOD

All Indiana drivers NO MATTER WHAT AGE are prohibited from texting while driving

How is it Enforced?
Indiana’s cell phone and texting laws are considered “primary” laws. A primary law means that an officer can pull you over for the offense without having to witness some other violation. That is, the officer sees you texting and can pull you over immediately and issue a citation. The citation will cost you $150.00 and is tripled in a construction zone!

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Uptown Arts District Façade Improvement Applications Now Available

The Michigan City Uptown Arts District Façade Improvement Program through the Redevelopment Commission is designed to promote the continued use and maintenance of commercial and residential buildings in the downtown/Uptown Arts District area. It is intended to help property owners and commercial tenants to rehabilitate and restore the visible exterior of existing structures. Improvements must meet criteria for appropriateness of design.

For complete program information and application, please click here (PDF).

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Michigan City Animal Control Seeks Volunteers

The Michigan City Animal Control Division would like to announce a new volunteer program that will encompass Kennel duties located at Michigan City’s Central Maintenance on the west side.  Some of the duties will include, but not limited to feeding of cats and dogs and cleaning the kennel if required.

Volunteers must be at least 18 years old and have their own transportation.  You can find the Application and Waiver forms at under the Animal Control tab and the Michigan City Police Department’s Facebook page.  Applications and Waivers will also be available at the front desk of the police department.  Once the forms are completed, please turn them in at the Michigan City Police Department for review, you will be contacted shortly thereafter.

Click here for Dog/Cat Kennel - Michigan City, Indiana Volunteer Application (PDF)

Click here for Dog/Cat Kennel - Volunteer Waiver And Release (PDF)

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Streetlight Outage Reporting

Mayor Ron Meer, in conjunction with NIPSCO, would like to inform the public of an online option available to them in reporting a streetlight outage. is an interactive website designed to allow the public an easier, faster, and much more efficient means of reporting a streetlight outage.  When a person accesses the website, they can report a streetlight outage with just three simple steps. 

Mayor Meer asks the public to please utilize this method of reporting when possible.  This website will eliminate steps in the reporting process and generate an immediate online report directly to NIPSCO.  However, for those who do not have internet access, you are encouraged to please call Central Services at 873-1500.  Central Services will then enter and submit the information on your behalf.

Mayor Meer would like to thank you for your help.  A well lit Michigan City is a safer and more appealing place for both our citizens and visitors.

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Indiana CLEAN Community Challenge

The Indiana Comprehensive Local Environmental Action Network (CLEAN) Community Challenge is a voluntary recognition program for local Indiana government. CLEAN helps communities take steps to plan, develop, and implement a quality of life plan. This plan includes gathering input and support from the community and local businesses.

Michigan City was awarded the status of a “CLEAN” community effective December 19, 2007.

To review Michigan City’s Quality of Life Plan and status of our existing projects go to

For questions on our local please contact:

Charlie Cate, Stakeholder Committee Leader
(219) 833-7591

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Indiana CLEAN

Free Prescription Drug Card Program

As a resident of Indiana, you and your family have access to a FREE Prescription Drug Card program. Simply download your Prescription Drug Card here to receive savings of up to 75% at more than 50,000 national and regional pharmacies. You may create as many cards as you need. Participating pharmacies include the following: Target, Kmart, CVS/pharmacy, Walgreens, Meijer, Kroger as well as thousands of independent pharmacies.

Discounts range in price from 10-70% but average about 30%. It is NOT's a membership program, but like insurance you get a card that you show at the pharmacy and they can calculate your discount.

For people with insurance or Medicare, this can work with them as well. Because it is NOT insurance, members would be able to see if they get a better price with their existing insurance or with the card. Usually, the co-pay through insurance will be better, but not always. So having the card could be helpful even to people that already have insurance. (Not to mention many individuals and businesses are going to high deductible plans that don't cover prescriptions.)

This benefit is sponsored by United Networks of America a national healthcare company in conjunction with a consortium of the pharmaceutical companies. This exact program has launched successfully in 30 states over the last 2 years. UNA expects the program to discount over 20,000,000 prescriptions in 2009 for tens of millions of American families when they need help the most.

The membership program may not meet everyone’s need but offers an inexpensive alternative for many. Click here for frequently asked questions about the program.

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Do You Have Special Medical Needs? Let The Fire Dept. Know!

The Michigan City Fire Department is in the process of gathering information on adults and children in the community who have special medical needs. Fire Chief Dave Lamb urge families who use medical care aids such as cardiac monitors, ventilation devices, feeding tubes, wheel chairs, or any other such devices for sustaining the life and health of a family member, to complete this form. Please click here to view and print the form. It then needs to be forwarded to the Fire Department. This form should also be used for community members who are non-ambulatory and would require assistance in leaving their homes in an evacuation situation.

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Are You In Compliance With City Trash Regulations?

Setting out your weekly trash pickup may seem like a fairly simple mundane task. However, have you considered if you are actually doing so in accordance with city trash regulations? Are you using city trash containers --- or just placing bags along the curb? If you are using trash containers, great! But are they in compliance with city trash regulations? Are you remodeling a home or building a new one? If you are, what are you doing with the construction rubbish?

  • According to the City Code, it shall be the duty of every person owning or leasing a residence or place of business in the City wherein garbage accumulates to maintain in a clean and odor free condition a cart provided by the City.
  • The only container that may be used must be a cart that the City will supply.
  • All garbage, trash or rubbish which accumulates shall be deposited in either a cart or dumpster.  The lid to every cart and dumpster shall be kept on and closed at all times, other than when placing items in them.
  • Plastic garbage bags with tight-fitting tie closures may be used, but shall be placed inside either a cart or dumpster.
  • All carts must be put out for collection by 7:00 a.m. on the day scheduled for their collection with the arrows located on the carts pointing out toward the street or alley from which collection is made.  All carts must have open access for the trash collectors to retrieve them.
  • For street-side pickup, carts shall be set out no more than 24 hours prior to the usual time of collection and shall be removed within 24 hours after collection.
  • At no time shall the cart be moved from its assigned address.
  • The Refuse Department must be contacted at 873-1530 for special pick-up at the normal collection location of all large items that cannot fit within the cart.
  • The two-wheeled cart Toters are to be used for trash only and they are not to be used for construction materials or compost.

If you're unfamiliar with city regulations on trash containers and construction waste, are curious about what it looks like to be in compliance and not in compliance with the recently revised city trash regulations, or have any questions about city trash regulations, compliancy, or trash pick-ups, click here to learn more.

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Rental Property Smoke Detector Enforcement

The City of Michigan City and the Michigan City Fire Department have begun the implementation of recently enacted Michigan City Ordinance #4020, which regulates smoke detectors for rental properties.

The Fire Department Administration would like to remind all owners of rental property in Michigan City that a two-step process has been enacted to protect the health, safety and general welfare of the citizens of Michigan City.  First of all, all residential rental units shall be equipped with smoke detectors.  And secondly, a registration requirement has been enacted stating that owners of property which is used as residential rental dwelling units or contains a rental dwelling unit are required to register all such properties with the Michigan City Fire Department.

The passage of Ordinance #4020 included an initial 45-day registration period and owners who have not yet registered their properties should do so immediately.  After this initial registration period following the passage of the Smoke Detectors for Rental Properties Ordinance earlier this year, owners shall be required  to register all such properties on an annual basis, by January 31st of each year.  Additionally, for new owners of rental property at any point throughout the year, registration is required within 30 days of becoming an owner of the real property to be used as residential rental property or rental dwelling units.

Rental property smoke detector registration forms can be obtained electronically over the internet at, or they can be obtained in person from the Fire Department Administrative Office at 2510 East Michigan Boulevard.

Anyone with questions regarding smoke detectors for rental properties can contact Kyle A. Kazmierczak, Division Chief of Inspections, at (219) 873-1453 or Jeff Santana, Assistant Inspector, at (219) 873-1440.         

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Michigan City Noted as Top City for Affordability

Michigan City has been identified by as one of the state's top cities for affordable property taxes.

Compared to other communities which are similar in size and diversity to Michigan City, our community is in the top 12% of communities regarding affordable property taxes, top 17% of affordable rent. Compared to all communities in the state, Michigan City rates in the top 14% of short commute times.

The website page dedicated to Michigan City,, lists many other demographic statistics, including politics, wealth, ancestry, commute and sprawl, housing, crime and climate.

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