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Air Quality Action Day July 23: Ozone Levels High

An Air Quality Action Day (AQAD) has been forecast for northwest Indiana for Saturday, July 23, 2016 for ozone. The AQAD includes the counties of Lake, Porter, and LaPorte and the cities of Gary, Hammond, Whiting, Ogden Dunes, and Michigan City. Ozone levels are expected to be in the orange or Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups range. Active children and adults, and people with respiratory disease, such as asthma, should limit prolonged outdoor exertion.

For more information, please visit the IDEM Smog Watch web site at http://www.in.gov/apps/idem/smog/ or the EPA AIRNow web site at http://www.airnow.gov/ and click on Indiana.

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Soul Children of Chicago to Perform Aug 5

Soul Children of Chicago to Perform Aug 5Mayor Ron Meer is proud to announce that after much work and effort, the Mayor’s office in conjunction with the Michigan City Commission on the Social Status of African American Males, the Michigan City Public Art Committee and the LaPorte County Commissioners,  the City of Michigan will host a special event featuring the Soul Children of Chicago gospel choir to perform in downtown Michigan City on Friday, August 5th at 6:00 p.m.

The internationally renowned children’s gospel choir group led by the charismatic social activist and choir director Walt Whitman performs regularly around the country and across the world and has also performed for at the White House for President Barack and First Lady Michelle Obama.

The Mayor requested permission from the LaPorte County Commissioners that the event take place on the Laporte County Courthouse parking lot at Washington and 4th Streets on the First Friday of August which is also the opening night of the Taste of Michigan City.  The performance features a gospel choir of 25 – 30 children that will perform a live concert for approximately 45 minutes.  The Michigan City Soul Steppers will be the opening act for the Soul Children of Chicago.

Mayor Ron Meer said on Wednesday, “We are all looking forward to this special evening.  We feel this event embraces our goals to celebrate the rich diversity of our City and County by bringing this special cultural experience to our downtown.  Our own Soul Steppers will open the evening and we can’t wait to welcome the Soul Children of Chicago to Michigan City."  The Mayor reported there will be a reception after the event where the Michigan City Soul Steppers and the Soul Children of Chicago will share a meal and fellowship together.  Mayor Meer added, "What a great networking opportunity for these young, creative people from Michigan City and Chicago to meet each other and appreciate each other’s talents."  Marty Corley of the Michigan City Commission on the Social Status of African American Males said on Wednesday, “We are happy to welcome these talented and soulful children to perform in Downtown Michigan City.  With our own Soul Steppers to open, and the Soul Children of Chicago, this will be a great evening for Michigan City."

The Michigan City Soul Steppers will perform thanks to the sponsorship of Mike and Rudy Conner.  The reception for the Soul Steppers and Soul Children of Chicago to follow the performance will take place at the Lubeznik Center for the Arts.  Local Michigan City restaurant Mucho Mas has offered to provide the food for the children's reception.  Janet Bloch, Education Director of the Lubeznik Center for the Arts said she is looking forward to participating in the special event.  "I am honored that Lubeznik Center for the Arts is hosting the reception after the performance. Our organization is deeply committed to a diverse range of cultural expressions and wants our community to feel welcome here,” she said.

In the event of rain, the performance will take place at an alternate location, The Elston Middle School Auditorium, on the same date at the same time.

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Children's Art Scholarships Available

Children's Art Scholarships AvailableThere is still money remaining in the MAC (Michigan City Public Art Committee) children’s art scholarship fund, so now is the time to take advantage of this opportunity.

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. New this year is the youth glassblowing workshop with artist and instructor Ian Osborne that will be given at The Nest 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 online or at the Visit Michigan City LaPorte, Marquette Mall, 4073 S. Franklin St., Michigan City, IN. Click here for Scholarship Guidelines and Application. Submission can be made to Jane Daley at the location or you can contact her via email (jane@michigancitylaporte.com) and the applications will be sent to you.

You can find art classes for children at the Lubeznik Center for the Arts or at The Nest of Michigan City.

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Summer Mosquito Spraying

The City of Michigan City is announcing that mosquito adulticiding (spraying for adult mosquito control) is scheduled to begin on Wednesday, June 29, 2016 and continue as needed throughout the remainder of the summer. When spraying occurs, it will commence at dusk and continue through the night until finished. The city asks the public to be alert when they see trucks with flashing lights and a spraying ULV machine, and to please give them plenty of room.

The public can help the City by policing their yard and home for these type of items:

  • Get rid of old tires, tin cans, buckets, drums, bottles or any water holding containers
  • Fill in or drain any low places (puddles, ruts) in yard
  • Clean gutters periodically
  • Keep drains, ditches and culverts clean of weeds and trash so water will drain properly
  • Cover trash containers to keep out rain water
  • Repair leaky pipes and outside faucets
  • Empty plastic wading pools at least once a week and store them indoors when not in use
  • Make sure your backyard pool is properly cared for while on vacation
  • Fill in tree rot holes and hollow stumps that hold water with sand or concrete
  • Change water in bird baths and plant pots or drip trays at least once a week
  • Keep grass cut short and shrubbery well-trimmed around the house so adult mosquitoes will not hide there

The city would like to thank our residents for their patience and any active participation in making the community more livable, safe, and comfortable.

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New Officers at MCPD

Officers Nick Baker, Nicholas Charo, and Louis GallegosThe Michigan City Police Department is proud to announce the graduation from the Indiana Law Enforcement Academy of their 3 newest officers. Officers Nick Baker, Nicholas Charo, and Louis Gallegos were hired on November 16th, 2015.

They began their training on March 14th, at the Indiana Law Enforcement Academy and graduated on June 24th, 2016. While at the academy, they received intensive training in various areas including firearms, defensive tactics, emergency vehicle operation and criminal law. Prior to beginning the academy, the three had one month of a local academy and completed two months of a four-month field-training program. The three will complete their field-training program over the next two months, ending with an evaluation phase; once completed, they will then be released on their own.

Nick Baker is the son of Teri and David Baker, and is currently in the Air National Guard stationed out of Ft. Wayne. Nick is following in his father, David Baker, and uncle’s (Tim Baker), footsteps with the Michigan City Police Department. Nick is unmarried and has no children.

Nicholas Charo is the son of Rose and David Charo, from Westville, Indiana. Nicholas is currently enrolled at Purdue North Central pursuing a degree in sociology. Nicholas is unmarried and has no children.

Louis Gallegos is the son of Olivia and Luis Gallegos. Louis came from the Porter County Sheriff’s Department where he spent seven years working in the Jail Division. Louis is currently in the Army National Guard as a 12 year veteran. Louis has one brother that is also in law enforcement in Lake County. Louis is unmarried, and the father of an 11 year old son.

We congratulate these new officers and wish them well in their Law Enforcement Careers!

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Barker Mansion Recognized for Achievement

Barker Mansion by Matt KubikThe Barker Mansion, an historic home museum in Michigan City, today announced that it has received a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence. Now in its sixth year, the achievement celebrates hospitality businesses that have earned great traveler reviews on TripAdvisor over the past year. “Our staff and volunteers do a great job welcoming the local community and tourists alike,” said Barker Mansion Director Jessica Rosier. “This achievement goes out to them for their dedication to sharing our story with others in a welcoming and fun way.”

"With the Certificate of Excellence, TripAdvisor honors hospitality businesses that have consistently received strong praise and ratings from travelers,” said Heather Leisman, Vice President of Industry Marketing, TripAdvisor. The Certificate of Excellence accounts for the quality, quantity and recency of reviews submitted by travelers on TripAdvisor over a 12-month period. To qualify, a business must maintain an overall TripAdvisor bubble rating of at least four out of five, have a minimum number of reviews and must have been listed on TripAdvisor for at least 12 months.

The Barker Mansion is located at 631 Washington Street in Michigan City, IN. The 38-room mansion was built by freight car industrialist and philanthropist John H. Barker in 1905. Visit www.barkermansion.com for details.

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New Traffic Patterns in Effect in Uptown Arts District

New traffic patterns within the Uptown Arts District took effect the week of June 13, 2016. Pine Street and Washington Street was converted from one-way traffic to two-way traffic between 11th Street and 2nd Street. Likewise, 9th Street was converted to two-way traffic from Wabash Street to Pine Street. Lastly, Franklin Street between 2nd Street and Washington Park Bridge was reconfigured for two-way traffic.

Additional four-way stops were added at the following intersections: Washington Street at 4th, 5th, 7th, and 9th Streets; Pine Street at 6th and 9th Streets. Please be diligent with the new configuration and look both ways before making a turn.

Please be patient and bear with us as we wrap this project up. Please be cautious and protect the safety of our workers. The Michigan City Redevelopment Commission set out to improve the safety and lane-configurations within the Uptown Arts District as part of the ongoing revitalization efforts in Michigan City. The two-way street conversion will improve the flow of traffic and improve connectivity throughout the area.

“The new configurations will provide people will multiple options to get between the area’s train stations, parks, restaurants and businesses, which will increase the flow of traffic,” said Brad Minnick, Senior Project Engineer for the project’s design firm, Primera Engineers. “More importantly, the reconfigured lanes are narrower than the previous lanes which is designed to reduce speeds and help improve safety for pedestrians, cyclists and motorists alike.”

The street conversion project also includes improved streetscaping with new pedestrian and high-mast lighting, traffic signage and signals. New LED flashing stop signs will help alert residents and out-of-town visitors of the new configurations throughout the transition period. Planning for the project began in early 2015 and it is anticipated that the project will be complete by mid-summer.

New Traffic Patterns in Uptown Arts District Take Effect mid-June

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Old Fuse Box Key at Barker MansionSpecial Programs at Barker Mansion

Summer Tours

The historic Barker Mansion is offering expanded tour options this summer, designed to appeal to a wide range of audiences and interests.

New this year, a self-guided tour of the first floor and garden will begin at 10 am, Tuesday through Saturday. On this exploratory tour, visitors are given guide books which point out interesting facts about each room and tell the story of the Barker legacy. Visitors also encounter “Discovery Baskets” filled with replica items from the time period, which can be touched and examined. Plan to stay 45 minutes for this tour; cost is $5 for adults and $2 for youth, ages 15 and under. Reservations are not needed and doors open promptly at 10 am for this tour.

The guided mansion tour, which has been a standard offering for decades, will begin at 1 pm Tuesday through Saturday. Visitors view all three floors of the mansion on this tour, which is led by a trained interpretive guide. The tour lasts one hour and costs $8 for adults and $5 for youth, ages 15 and under. Reservations are not needed and doors open at 12:45 pm for this tour.

Back by request, a guided Wednesday evening tour will take visitors behind the scenes of the historic home at 7 pm. Guests will venture into all spaces normally off-limits, including basement, closet, and storage areas. The tour will visit the old laundry room and summer kitchen and former servants’ quarters. The two-hour two costs $15 for adults and $10 for youth, ages 15 and under. Space for this tour is limited to the first 15 people to walk-up that evening; reservations are not accepted. Doors open at 6:45 pm for this tour.

The aforementioned tour times and prices are valid through Labor Day 2016. Please note that the mansion is closed on Mondays for upkeep.

 

Kidsí Programs Return to Barker MansionKids’ Programs Return to Barker Mansion

Curious children ages 10 and under are invited to programming at Michigan City’s Barker Mansion this summer. The popular series, Kids’ Nature Play in the Garden, will return this summer. The remaining session will be held on August 11 at 9 am.

The 1.5-hour program will encourage youth to explore the garden just as Catherine Barker may have done as a young girl. Activities, all with a theme, will take place in the outdoor garden and include a story, an art project, and a snack.

The interactive session will be led by Indiana Master Naturalist Cookie Ferguson. A $2 fee per child applies; each accompanying adult is free. Registration is not necessary. The program will be moved indoors if raining.

 

 

Summer History Camp at Barker MansionSummer History Camp at Barker Mansion

Barker Mansion is holding it’s first-ever Summer History Camp from July 25-28. The camp is ideal for ages eight and up, though all are welcome to attend. Mansion staff will facilitate hands-on activities throughout the week, including an “off-limits” tour, where kids venture behind the scenes of the historic building. A scavenger hunt and a field trip to the Old Lighthouse Museum are also on the agenda.

The camp runs from 9 am to 11:30 am, Monday through Wednesday and from 9 am to 1 pm on Thursday. Craft materials and snacks are provided each day, and lunch is included on Thursday. A $40 fee includes all activities and materials, plus a Barker Mansion t-shirt.

Registration and pre-payment is required by calling (219) 873-1520. Deadline for registering is July 18. Guardians must sign a consent form at Monday morning camper drop-off.

 

Movies by Moonlight at Barker Mansion - Metropolis - July 29 at 8pmMovies by Moonlight at Barker Mansion

A free movie will be shown in the Barker Mansion gardens on July 29 at 8 pm. Guests will view “Metropolis”, which is hailed as the most famous and influential silent film ever created. The film, produced in 1927, takes place in the year 2026. The plot depicts a German population divided between workers who must live in the dark underground and the rich who enjoy a futuristic city of splendor, complete with robots. “Metropolis” is suitable for ages 13 and up.

Guests are encouraged to bring lawn chairs, blankets, and snacks to enjoy during the movie. The mansion will have candy for sale which was popular, or invented, during Catherine Barker’s era. Following the two-hour film, Heritage Interpreter T.J. Kalin will give a short talk on the film’s influence for those who wish to participate. Reservations are not necessary for this event.
Click here for further event details.

 

Hop the Cosmos: Stargaze & Brews at Barker Mansion

Friday, August 26, 2016 from 7:30 PM to 9:30 PM
Barker Mansion - 631 Washington St., Michigan City

Join us for a stargazing party in the garden featuring beer from Michigan City's newest brewery, Zorn Brew Works. We'll have snacks and night sky interpretation (with a really big telescope) courtesy of Indiana Dunes State Park; we'll likely see some of the same things the Barkers saw when stargazing over 100 years ago! The event takes place in the beautiful Barker Mansion gardens, nestled between Michigan City's Uptown Arts District and the Haskell and Barker Historic District. Tickets for those 21+ start at $20. Kids are welcome at this laid-back event (we'll have some lemonade for them to drink). Kid tickets are $15.
Learn more and buy tickets online.

 

Heritage Ball at Barker Mansion

Saturday, October 1, 2016 from 4:00 PM to 10:30 PM
Barker Mansion - 631 Washington Street, Michigan City

Celebrate 180 years of Michigan City history with cocktails, jazz, costumes and more! Michigan City will be celebrating the 180th Anniversary of Incorporation, as well the the Bicentennial of Indiana! Join us on October 1, 2016 for the Heritage Ball at Barker Mansion and Barker Hall to celebrate. Start the evening at Barker Mansion with a champagne reception from 4 – 6 pm. Take the time to tour the building and absorb all of the history it brings to Michigan City. Then head to Barker Hall at 6pm for an evening filled with music and the ambiance this hall offers the residents of our wonderful city and beyond. There will be stations with delicious food to fill your belly, and the Calumet Ridge Jazz Ensemble will be there to enjoys and for dancing. A cash bar with feature beer, wine and liquor as well as our Barker Signature drink. ASilent Auction with feature items from both the Barker Hall and Barker Mansion as well as items that highlight the history of our wonderful city. Dress for a nice evening on the town, or in historic costumes to celebrate our city's history. Tickets are $50/person or $85/couple. They can be purchased now by calling Barker Mansion (873-1520) or Barker Hall (874-4355). Please be sure to leave your name and numbers and your call will be returned to make ticket payment arrangements. This event is being arranged to help support the historic preservation of the Barker Heritage buildings.

The Barker Mansion is located at 631 Washington Street in Michigan City, IN. The 38-room mansion was built by freight car industrialist and philanthropist John H. Barker in 1905. Cost is $5 per adult and $2 per child. Reservations are not necessary. Visit www.BarkerMansion.com for details.

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Seasonal Storms Pave Way for Scammers

Unfortunately, LaPorte County can be known for a crazy storm season. Wind, hail and rain damage may put many people in the market for home repair services. But when storms roll through, scammers are not far behind. If your home or property has been damaged, beware of home improvement scammers who may be looking to prey on your situation and swindle you into paying for inferior, overpriced or unneeded work.

When someone’s home or property is damaged, they often need the work done immediately to avoid further harm. Out-of-state contractors that swing into town and offer work right then and there can be appealing, but this can also be risky.

"Storm Chasers" show up at the perfect time and pull one over on desperate homeowners. If you don’t take the time to research the best company, you may be left with a leaky roof and a hole in your pocke! Iit is always better to contract with an established local business who can back up and guarantee their workmanship.

Door-to-door home repair scammers victimize people by urging immediate action or offering tempting discounts so that the customer doesn’t have time to fully evaluate the contract or the company. Be cautious of anyone offering to “help you with your insurance claim”. Call your homeowner insurance company yourself.

Here are some helpful tips to avoid a home improvement scam:

  • Take your time. Don’t let the contractor rush your decision.
  • Do your research. Know how much you can afford and what you want done.
  • Get multiple price quotes from different contractors.
  • Check with the Better Business Bureau and the Attorney General’s Office to see if complaints have been filed against the contractor.
  • Check to make sure the contractor is locally licensed, bonded and insured. A performance bond provides the most direct protection for the consumer. Bonds that cover municipal code compliance may be helpful, but would not offer direct monetary recovery for an aggrieved consumer.
  • Opt for the local, well-established contractor rather than the door-to-door "storm chaser".
  • Get a contract in writing that details what work is to be done and when it will be finished.
  • If the contractor came to your door unsolicited, ensure you receive a notice from the contractor of your ability to cancel the contract within three days for a full refund before signing any contract.
  • Never pay for the entire project before the work begins. Do not pay more than a third of the total cost as a down payment.

As always, if you feel that you have been scammed or someone is attempting to cheat you, please contact Sgt. Chris Yagelski at 219-873-1461 ext. #333 or email ASKACOP@Emichigancity.com.

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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.

ONLINE: www.placespeak.com/washingtonpark

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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4-Way Stop Becomes Permanent

The City of Michigan City would like to make our citizens aware that the temporary stop signs that were installed on Lake Shore Drive, at the corner of Krueger Ave., during the Franklin Street Bridge painting project, will remain in place.

At their November 16th meeting, the Michigan City Board of Public Works and Safety voted unanimously in favor of making the stop signs, located on eastbound and westbound Lake Shore Drive at the corner of Krueger Ave., and the exit to Fedder’s Alley (Ontario Street) permanent.

With the curves on Lake Shore Drive at this intersection producing less than ideal site lines, these new stop signs will allow motorists coming out of Fedder’s Alley and also those coming off of Krueger Hill, more safety as they enter onto either eastbound or westbound Lake Shore Drive.

In addition, a “stop ahead” sign will be placed on eastbound Lake Shore Drive, west of the intersection.

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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 http://bitly.com/myMichiganCity.

Any business can join the program at any time by visiting http://bitly.com/myMichiganCity. 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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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 www.in.gov/isp or at the Michigan City Police Department website at www.michigancitypolice.com.

For additional information, please click here.  

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Mid-Town Grant Program Announced

The Michigan City Urban Enterprise Association announces their Mid-Town Grant program.

There is a new grant program for Mid-Town district businesses located on Franklin Street from 11th Street to Coolspring.  The purpose is intended to promote visual improvements, historic preservation, structural integrity, boost the quality of product and enhance the customer experience.  It can be used for exterior and interior rehabilitation of the building or machinery and equipment used in the business.

The Michigan City Urban Enterprise Association will reimburse 60% of eligible costs up to $2,500.

Please contact Executive Director, Diane Wilczewski at 219-561-6991 or email at mcuea1984@gmail.com for an application.

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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 nwi.com. 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

Texting
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 emichigancity.com 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.

www.nipsco.com/streetlightout 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 http://www.in.gov/idem/prevention/2361.htm.

For questions on our local please contact:

Charlie Cate, Stakeholder Committee Leader
(219) 833-7591
ccate@emichigancity.com

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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 insurance...it'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 http://www.emichigancity.com/cityhall/departments/fire/, 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 CityTownInfo.com 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, http://www.citytowninfo.com/places/indiana/michigan-city, lists many other demographic statistics, including politics, wealth, ancestry, commute and sprawl, housing, crime and climate.

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