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Debris from waves closes Central Avenue Beach

Beach goers compete for bathing spots amid chunks concrete after erosialong Central Avenue Beach IndianDunes National Lakeshore. | Carole Carlson~Sun-Times

Beach goers compete for bathing spots amid chunks of concrete after erosion along Central Avenue Beach in the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. | Carole Carlson~Sun-Times Media

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Updated: September 3, 2014 6:09AM



BEVERLY SHORES — Strong waves this past week, estimated as high as 11 feet along the shoreline, unearthed buried debris that will be removed Monday and Tuesday, closing the Central Avenue Beach and its parking lot, according to the National Park Service.

The beach will reopen at 7 a.m. Wednesday. The area, just east of Beverly Shores, is part of the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore.

On Friday, visitors navigated the sand pathway to the beach around chunks of exposed concrete and other hazards, including a vault from an old septic system. Several people played in the water near the narrow strip of unguarded beach.

“It’s kind of surprises you when you’re walking along because you don’t expect it because you’re looking at the big beautiful lake,” said Sue Sipple, a visitor from Cincinnati.

National Park Service spokesman Bruce Rowe said the parking lot holds 144 vehicles and almost always fills up on summer weekends.

Rowe said heavy equipment will be brought in to remove the debris. He said he was told there was a road near the shore decades ago and that might be part of the rubble.

Some of it also might be from houses torn down long ago, Rowe said, adding that “we want to get that stuff out of there.”

Rowe said beaches on the national park’s eastern end, west of the Michigan City harbor breakwater, tend to have narrower shores and more erosion because they don’t receive the sand that other areas normally get.



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