- On Friday, February 15, the name of the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore was changed to reflect its new status as a national park.
- The name change was part of a broad bill signed by Donald Trump, which also provided the President with $US1.4 billion to begin constructing a wall on the US-Mexico border.
- Leaders of the National Park Service first began fighting to change the location’s name and status as early as 1916, according to the South Bend Tribune.
- The change will not affect the location’s funding or daily operations but is expected to bring in more tourists seeking national parks.
- Before the change, the area was one of 418 “national park units,” but now it is one of 61 officially named national parks, according to IndyStar.
After a 103-years-long fight, the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore has officially become a national park.
On Friday, February 15, Donald Trump signed off on the name change as part of a broader bill from Congress that provides the President with $US1.4 billion to construct a wall against the US-Mexico border.
The name change went into effect immediately
Though the park’s updated status has already gone into effect, there aren’t many changes expected at the newly-named Indiana Dunes National Park. Of course, signs and literature at the park will be updated, but daily operations and park funding are expected to remain the same.
What government officials and park leaders are hoping to see as a result of the name change is a boost in tourism, according to the South Bend Tribune.
Leaders of the National Park Service, as well as members of Congress, have spent 103 years fighting for the name change
In 1916, the National Park Service’s first director Stephen Mather was the first to introduce an idea to turn the lakeshore into a national park.
However, his plan was halted by World War I, according to the South Bend Tribune. Since then, members of Congress and the National Park Service have continued to fight for the change, but to no avail.
The Trump Administration recently refused to grant national-park status to the lakeshore in 2018
Congressman Pete Visclosky earned support of the Senate in 2017 to change the destination’s name, but lost it the following year in 2018.
At the time, members of Trump’s administration reportedly said the “national park” title was being reserved for larger and more varied areas of land and water, according to the South Bend Tribune.
Indiana Dunes National Park is home to a wide range of landscapes
Spanning 15,000 acres, the location is ideal for bird watching, swimming, and fishing, among other activities, according to the National Park Service’s website.
There are also a variety of nature elements to experience at the park, including “rugged dunes, mysterious wetlands, sunny prairies, meandering rivers and peaceful forests.”
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