Agency Touts Impact of Tourism

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An annual report released by Indiana Dunes Tourism says Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore remains Porter County's biggest attraction, drawing 3 million visitors annually. The report cites research suggesting a majority of visitors to the park come from outside Indiana. February 21, 2014

News Release

PORTER, Ind. - Indiana Dunes Tourism assisted more than 73,500 people - including visitors from 48 states and 33 foreign countries - at its Visitor Center during 2013, according to its just-completed annual visitor report.

Indiana Dunes Tourism said its visitor register was signed by people from such distant locations as Australia, China, Germany, Spain, France and Russia last year. Germany had the highest number of visitors who signed the register.

Lorelei Weimer, executive director of Indiana Dunes Tourism, the official tourism agency for Porter County, said the Indiana Dunes remains the biggest tourist attraction in Porter County. She said more than 3 million people from across the world visit the dunes each year.

Weimer said the Visitor Center's location at 1215 N. State Road 49 in Porter is ideal for assisting visitors because it is located just minutes from Indiana Dunes State Park and the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. She said the Visitor Center's location at Ind. 49 and U.S. 20 also makes it easy to direct people into the cities and towns of Porter County for unique dining, lodging, shopping and attractions.

"We are excited to be attracting visitors from all across the country and the world, and that we are able to assist them so they get the most out of their visit," Weimer said.

An Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore study showed 2 percent of visitors are international visitors, 40 percent are from Illinois, 40 percent are from Indiana and 18 percent are from other states.

In addition to assisting walk-in visitors, Indiana Dunes Tourism last year distributed more than 100,000 copies of its Indiana Dunes Country Activities Guide, which provides a comprehensive look at all there is to do in Porter County and the incentive visitors need to extend their stay.

Indiana Dunes Tourism also had 268,347 unique visits to its website - www.IndianaDunes.com - during 2013. That is a 57 percent jump from the previous year.

Weimer said 60 percent of prospective visitors who saw the tourism bureau's materials actually visited Indiana Dunes Country and 37 percent of people who received the information visited an attraction different than they originally planned.

Source: Indiana Dunes Tourism