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Trail Overview
Dunes Loop

Visitors can't resist the draw of Lake Michigan and the Indiana Dunes which anchor the top of Porter County. They congregate here for relaxing days of sunning on the beach and invigorating swims. Traveling south, you'll find a host of intriguing stops that celebrate the region. Art abounds in the communities of Valparaiso and Chesterton where you can view the works of world-famous artists at a top-notch university museum or visit small shops where you'll find local artisans at work creating everything from paintings to one-of-a-kind jewelry, even some made of beach glass. Discover an array of artisan foods and flowers at a jazzy European market, fill up on creative omelets and sandwiches at a trendy café, and enjoy a well-known musical at an intimate theater. A luxurious stay at an English country house inn or a romantic bed and breakfast top off your visit. Your journey starts at the…

Indiana Dunes Tourism
1215 N. State Road 49, Porter, IN 46304
(219) 926-2255; IndianaDunes.com

1. Air One Photography
64 W. Lincolnway, Valparaiso, IN 46383
(219) 462-1182; aironephoto.com
Open year-round, Monday-Friday 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
You might feel as if you're flying yourself when you see the amazing aerial photography that this shop offers, as well as panoramic photography. The subjects include Northern Indiana lighthouses and landscapes, as well as Chicago skylines plus architecture from both areas. When you visit this spacious downtown Valparaiso gallery, you can watch hundreds of prints being produced on large format printers and then choose your own favorite, often in sizes not normally found in the market.

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2. Artists’ Den
203 E Jefferson St, Valparaiso
(219) 462-3883
Open year-round, Tuesday-Friday 10am-5pm, Saturday 10am-3pm.
Shopping for fine art is all the sweeter when it’s displayed in a historic turn-of-the-century home, This is one of the longest operating family-owned galleries in Northwest Indiana and offers an array of styles ranging from sophisticated to whimsical fine art, glass, pottery, jewelry and sculpture. The art exhibits change frequently. Custom, creative
picture framing.

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Beverly Shores Museum & Art Gallery 3. Beverly Shores History Museum & Art Gallery
525 Broadway, Beverly Shores, IN 46301
(219) 878-1517;
Open May-October
Friday-Sunday 11am to 3pm, Monday (Memorial Day through Labor Day) 11am to 3pm
The Chicago South Shore and South Bend Railroad played a critical role in creating the Lake Shore and Beverly Shores developments. You can trace that history today in the museum and learn about how futuristic houses from the 1933 World's Fair were moved here. The art gallery has established itself as a premier venue for the exhibition of Fine Art. Housed in the former station master's residence of the Beverly Shores Depot, the gallery features exhibits of regional artists working in a variety of media. Museum exhibits change every two months. The Gift Shop offers an interesting variety of locally made items and books.

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Art & Earth Trail 4. Brauer Museum of Art – Valparaiso University <
Valparaiso University Center for the Arts
1709 Chapel Dr., Valparaiso, IN 46383
(219) 464-5365; valpo.edu/artmuseum.
Schedule a free docent-led tour: (219) 465-7926
Open year-round, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday 10am to 5pm, Wednesday 10am to 8:30pm, Saturday and Sunday noon to 5pm; For academic recess hours, summer hours, and closures, please check web site. View a nationally recognized collection of 19th and 20th century American art, including works by Frederic Edwin Church, Asher B. Durand, Childe Hassam, Georgia O'Keeffe and Ed Paschke. The museum also houses the largest known collection of works by Junius R. Sloan, a Hudson River School painter from the 1800s who lived and worked in the Midwest. You can also see world religious art and Midwest regional art as you visit on your own or as a docent guides you on a scheduled tour.

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Art & Earth Trail 5. Broken Wagon Bison
563 W. 450 N., Hobart, IN 46342
(219) 759-3523; brokenwagonbison.com
Open year-round, Monday-Saturday 8 a.m.-5 p.m., Sunday 2-6 p.m.
Learn all about the beast that is an American icon when you arrive here and view a video on the history of bison and buffalo. You'll be introduced to the importance of bison in Native American life and how bison are used today. If your group calls ahead, you can head for the pasture and get a look at the animals. The facility's shop features bison hides and skulls, as well as handmade purses, leather jewelry and the works of local artists. You also can buy frozen and canned bison meat and jerky to take home and try yourself.

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Central Park Plaza 6. Central Park Plaza Market/Summer Rhapsody Music Festival
Valparaiso Community Festivals & Events
162 W. Lincolnway, Valparaiso, IN 46383
(219) 464-8332; ValparaisoEvents.com
Market open June-October, Tuesday and Saturday 8am to 2pm. Music Festival dates through summer.
Shop at Central Park Plaza for all kinds of fresh fruits and vegetables that local growers raise. You can also choose from a wide range of beautiful flowers and plants, home-baked artisan breads, pies and other treats, plus arts and crafts. On most Tuesdays, enjoy live entertainment from 11am to 1pm CST featuring blues, jazz and other performances. Bring the kids along for the water thrills of the park’s Splash Pad. Warm weather also brings the Summer Music Festival with concerts in Central Park Plaza downtown.

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7. Chesterton Art Center
115 S. Fourth St., Chesterton, IN 46304
(219) 926-4711; ChestertonArt.com
Open daily, year-round; Monday-Friday 11am to 4pm; Saturday and Sunday 1pm to 4pm.
See all the creativity that flows in Northern Indiana at this unique gallery, located in an old machine shop. Exhibits change each month and you'll always find fine art and original crafts created by more than 100 regional artists. On select Saturdays, the center offers "Brown Bag Art" where you can create your own painting, ceramic work or stained glass, with different artists hosting and lunch provided by local restaurants.

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Chesterton’s European Market 8. Chesterton’s European Market
220 Broadway, Chesterton, IN 46304
(219) 926-5513; ChestertonsEuropeanMarket.com
Open first Saturday in May through last Saturday in October, 8am to 2pm.
It's the trendiest of markets and people from as far away as Chicago are discovering the lure of artisan cheeses, breads and pastries, plus ethnic food, fresh produce, locally produced honey, nuts and dried fruit. More than 100 vendors offer these goodies, along with fine art, flowers, rare books, jewelry, clothing and prepared food. Enjoy live entertainment from 10am to 1pm and relax for lunch at a picnic table in the adjoining park.

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Art & Earth Trail 9. Chicago Street Theatre
154 W. Chicago St., Valparaiso, IN 46383
(219) 464-1636; ChicagoStreet.org
Open year-round, Monday-Friday 10 a.m.-2 p.m. and two hours before each show.
Enjoy well-known shows and musicals, along with some that may be new to you in this intimate 130-seat theatre in downtown Valparaiso. Past shows have included Annie, Frost/Nixon, Pinocchio and The Clean House. Upcoming this year is the romantic comedy The Graduate, along with Arthur Miller’s A View from the Bridge and Shakespeare’s The Comedy of Errors. The casts are made up of actors and actresses from all over Northwest Indiana, as well as Chicago. Concessions are available on theatre nights. Theatre classes are available for adults and children.

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Duneland Pizza & Dunes Photography 10. Duneland Pizza & Dunes Photography
 
520 Broadway, Chesterton, IN 46304
(219) 926-1163; DunesPhotos.com; DunelandPizza.com
What more can you ask for than delicious pizza and amazing Lake Michigan photography all in one place? This pizzeria is a 41-year tradition in Chesterton and offers five styles of crusts with a choice of 25 different toppings, and specialties such as taco pizza and barbecued chicken pizza. In the dining room, you’re surrounded with framed photographs of the Indiana Dunes, Lake Michigan, driftwood, and stones that were collected along the beach and endless Lake Michigan shoreline.

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DunesWalk Inn at the Furness Mansion 11. DunesWalk Inn at the Furness Mansion
1491 N. Furnleigh Lane, Chesterton, IN 46304
(219) 728-6393; DunesWalkInn.com
Open year-round (tours available by appointment)
The Furness Mansion, built in 1881 by one of Porter County's earliest settlers, had fallen on hard times until it was rescued, refurbished and turned into a beautiful boutique hotel. Today DunesWalk Inn welcomes guests to a serene haven, where you can choose from two luxurious suites or three guest rooms. It's set amid four acres of woodland forest landscape abutting the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. During the renovation, fine details of the old mansion were retained, including the woodwork and vertical mullion windows.

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Art & Earth Trail 12.Figure Eight Brewing
150 S Washington Street, Valparaiso, IN 46385
(219) 477-2000; FigureEightBrewing.com
Open year-round, Thursday and Friday 5-8 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 1-5 p.m.
Hand-crafted beer is brewed right on the premises at this new micro brewery. The tasting room gives you a chance to sit with your friends, sample some of the brews and even play some pinball. Carryout also is available. Some of the intriguing names, such as First Ascent, Ro Shampo, Where Lizards Dare, Snake pro and Crash Test Blonde, will have you pondering which one to try first.

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Gray Goose Inn 13. Gray Goose Inn
350 Indian Boundary Rd., Chesterton, IN 46304
(219) 926-5781 or (800) 521-5127; GrayGooseInn.com
Open year-round, daily 9 a.m.-9 p.m.
You may feel as if you're in jolly old England when you settle into this English country house amid a stand of towering oaks, overlooking a private lake and tucked into 100 wooded acres. Choose from five spacious rooms or three suites. All of these guest accommodations are luxuriously decorated. You can walk trails on the grounds to work up an appetite for a scrumptious gourmet breakfast. Later, relax in the large screened Gazebo overlooking Lake Palomara. The inn is just one mile from Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore and Dunes State Park.

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Holly Jackson Art Studio and Gallery 14. Holly Jackson Art Studio and Gallery
103 S. 2nd St., Chesterton, IN 46304
(219) 926-8290; HollyJacksonArt.com
Friday 10am to 5pm, Saturday 10am to 4pm, Sunday-Thursday by appointment, so call ahead.
Visitors find an energizing environment and leave with a good taste of local color when they visit Holly Jackson’s gallery. You often find the artist working at her easel. Shop for fine art, including acrylic and oil paintings, framed prints and one-of-a-kind cards. Some of the paintings portray the area landscape, so you can take home a reminder of your vacation in Northern Indiana.

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15. Inspiration Wood Cottage Retreat
642 E. Inspiration Rd., Westville
(219) 983-9922; InspirationWood.com
Open year-round. Check-in 3 to 6pm; checkout 11am.
What a perfect place for an extended family gathering! This cottage retreat is just 10 minutes from the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, with cheerful, fully modern cottages that will sleep between two and eight people and well-equipped kitchens. Each cottage is nestled in the woods, among wetlands where you can observe wildlife. And there’s so much to do! Hit the walking trails, take in family movie night, and enjoy a bonfire, hayrides and the petting farm. You can take card-making and jewelry-making classes or buy these hand-made items and sundries in the Greeting Barn. Inspiration Wood also offers business and church group team
building retreats.

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Molly Bea’s INGREDIENTS 16. Molly Bea’s INGREDIENTS
761 Indian Boundary Rd., Chesterton, IN 46304
(219) 983-9401; MollyBeas.com
Open daily year-round; Monday-Thursday 10am to 7pm, Friday-Saturday 10am to 5pm,
Sundays 12pm to 4pm.
Whether you love to cook, bake or just eat, you're in for some fun at this shop. It may be small, but you'll find more than 1,000 food items displayed in bulk bins, including many hard-to-find ingredients. Looking for unique spices, seeds, nuts, teas or chocolates? They're all here, along with everything from granola to gummies and pasta to power bars. You can even grind your own peanut butter.

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Schoolhouse Shop 17. Schoolhouse Shop
278E 1500 N, Chesterton, IN 46304
(219) 926-1551; SchoolhouseShop.com
Open year-round, Monday, Wednesday-Saturday 10am to 5pm; Sunday 11am to 5pm.
The students who learned their lessons in this 1886 schoolhouse would have a lot more fun today shopping for gourmet foods, gifts, flowers, fancy clothes from a trendy boutique, picking out ever-so-fresh produce at the weekend farmers market and having lunch on the patio. It's an intriguing stop in the Indiana Dunes region that features Northern Indiana's bounty, including fresh and frozen
fruit pies.

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Songbird Prairie Bed and Breakfast 18. Songbird Prairie Bed and Breakfast
174 N 600 W, Valparaiso, IN 46385
(219) 759-4274; SongbirdPrairie.com
Open year-round.
The bluebirds and their other feathered friends just outside entertain and serenade you with song as you enjoy a three-course breakfast that features freshly baked breads, fruits, a special entrée and even a decadent dessert at this romantic retreat. Even the luxurious rooms with warming fireplaces and spa tubs boast songbird themes. You'll want to roam the six acres of deep-shaded paths that wind through sheaves of prairie grass and wild rose before you indulge in a traditional afternoon tea.

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Stephanie Swanson Jewelry 19. Stephanie Swanson Jewelry Design, Fine Art Gallery and Gifts
206 S. Calumet, Suite C, Chesterton
(219) 926-2444; stephanieswanson.biz
Open year-round, Tuesday-Friday 9:30am to 5pm; Saturday 9:30am to 4pm.
You can't help but think of the Lake Michigan beach, so close to this Northern Indiana community, when you peruse this artist's hand-crafted jewelry in the blues and greens that reflect the lake and sky. She even creates originals from beach glass, as well as sterling, gold, gemstones, fossils and Roman coins. Visitors get a first-hand look at how she makes her jewelry and can bring in their own stones and beach glass and have them transformed into a wearable piece of art. A fullservice jewelry and watch repair shop, that recently expanded into a gallery carrying fine art paintings, antiques, pottery, glass, handmade gifts and estate jewelry.

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20. The Hazel Hannell Collection - Permanent Art Gallery at Pines Village Retirement Communities
3303 Pines Village Circle, Valparaiso, IN 46383
(219) 465-1591; PinesVillage.org
Open year-round; Monday - Friday 8am to 4pm.
The paintings of artist Hazel Hannell, a longtime resident of Porter County, are legendary in Northern Indiana. Beginning in 2011, her works went on display in the Permanent Art Gallery at this retirement community. She continued painting until her death at the age of 106. The new collection features 22 of the final works she completed, many of them landscapes, as well as pieces of her ceramics and printmaking. Take a self-guided tour. You can buy postcards featuring her art, as well as original works of regional artists featured every six weeks.

Third Coast Spice Cafe 21. Third Coast Spice Cafe
761 Indian Boundary Rd., Suite 6, Chesterton, IN 46304
(219) 926-5858; ThirdCoastSpice.com
Open daily year-round 6am to 3pm.
It's amazing what delicious creations this restaurant whips up, using cage-free Indiana eggs. You might opt for one of the gourmet omelets, perhaps a Garden that includes caramelized onions, roasted red bell peppers, artichoke hearts and Swiss cheese. There's plenty to accompany these main dishes including pastries and smoothies. Scrumptious soups and sandwiches, both cold and griddle versions, round out the lunch menu. Everything is made from scratch with no preservatives.

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Westchester Township History Museum 22. Westchester Township History Museum
700 W. Porter Ave., Chesterton, IN 46304
(219) 983-9715; wpl.lib.in.us/museum
Open year-round, Wednesday-Sunday 1pm to 5pm.
Victorian era gardens welcome visitors to the elegant 1885 Brown Mansion, which houses the works of Northern Porter County artists and exhibits that detail the history of the area and saving the Indiana Dunes. Tour the Queen Anne style home and view changing exhibits. You can shop for books about area history and culture, artworks, beach glass jewelry, mugs, Christmas ornaments and more in the museum store.

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