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Historically the Marquette Park lagoons marked the location where the Grand Calumet River flowed into Lake Michigan. As industry in the area developed, the flow of the Grand Calumet was altered, and the lagoons are now a part of the headwaters of the east branch of the Grand Calumet River. The East Branch extends 12 river miles to the junction with the Indiana Harbor Canal. The river system is complex and driven primarily by lake level fluctuations in Lake Michigan and by the many discharges along the river that are associated with urban and industrial development.

As a result of this development, over time, sediment has accumulated within the lagoons, reducing the water depth and available fish habitat. Fortunately, over the past decade, the lagoons have been the subject of many restoration efforts. In 2001 Save the Dunes Conservation Fund organized the Grand Calumet River Lagoons Erosion Control Project at Marquette Park, repairing damage caused by erosion and sedimentation, improving public access to the lagoon, and restoring the natural landscape. The project raised funds and installed the fishing deck south of the Pavilion, providing users a launch point for non-motorized watercraft, including kayaks and canoes. In 2012, the City of Gary, in collaboration with the U.S. EPA, restored the east lagoon. Restoration efforts included dredging portions of the lagoon, the reconstruction of Patterson Island, some shoreline restoration, the creation of fish habitat, and the construction of an additional non-motorized watercraft launch and new fishing overlook.

Note: Fish Consumption Advisories may be in effect and certain fish should not be consumed without taking precautions. Additional information is available from the Indiana State Department of Health.

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Marquette Park

1 North Grand Boulevard • Gary, IN 46403
(219) 938-7362 Phone • (219) 938-7380 Fax