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Indiana Dunes Could Become Our Next National Park

A U.S. House committee has approved an Indiana-backed plan to designate Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore a national park.

WASHINGTON  -- The next national park could be right here in the Hoosier state.

The U.S. House Natural Resources Committee has approved a plan by Indiana lawmakers to make Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore a national park. 

If the full House votes in favor of the plan, it will move on to the Senate.

The proposal is backed by all nine of Indiana's U.S. House members, including Rep. Pete Visclosky of Merrillville. Visclosky believes the "national park" designation will draw more visitors to the area and invigorate the region's tourism industry.

Indiana Dunes is one of the state's most treasured places. Efforts to preserve and protect the area date back to 1899. The dunes became a state park in 1925 and earned the designation of "national lakeshore" in 1966.

The national lakeshore has been expanded four times in the last 50 years; today, it runs for nearly 25 miles along the southern shore of Lake Michigan and spans more than 15,000 acres.

(Photo by JoeyBLS/Thinkstock.)

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