The Crusader Newspaper Group

Free Symphony Concert in the Dunes

This year’s free concert by the Northwest Indiana Symphony on Friday, August 4 at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore’s West Beach will have a family focus. “We are encouraging families to come out and make a full day and evening of the concert to celebrate before returning to school,” according to park education specialist Kim Swift.

On Fridays this summer, West Beach is the place for water recreation. Park rangers are bringing out snorkel gear, paddle boards and kayaks for kids and adults to try. This activity takes place from 1 p.m. until 5 p.m. Then families can pick up a bite to eat at one of several food vendors who will be on hand especially for the concert. Dunes Learning Center is providing a wine tasting event for adults to enjoy that is a fundraiser for their educational operation.

In addition, other partners will be on hand with activities and information. Kids can join some of the symphony performers one hour before show time to play instruments brought by Plum Grove Music. The Instrument Garden provides an opportunity for children and adults to try their hands at playing an orchestral instrument.

The actual concert begins at 7:30 p.m. and will feature a variety of popular and classical music all set amidst the backdrop of the setting sun over the beautiful Indiana dunes landscape.  This performance is presented in partnership with Dunes Learning Center, Dunes National Park Association, the Friends of Indiana Dunes, and Eastern National and continues the tradition begun last year when the park celebrated its 100th anniversary of the National Parks and the 200th of the State of Indiana.

Enjoy the 40-piece Northwest Indiana Symphony under the direction of Conductor Kirk Muspratt for a 90 minute performance of music featuring a mix of patriotic songs, light classical pieces, and movie and Broadway tunes. The stage and seating area will be set up in the southwest parking lot at West Beach. Limited seating is available so visitors are strongly encouraged to bring folding chairs. Purchase food from one of several food vendors who will be on site during the concert, or bring a picnic.

A new feature this year will be a wine tasting event sponsored by Dunes Learning Center to raise funds for their education programs in the park.  Wines will be available for purchase. Fee collection at West Beach will stop at 5:30 p.m. on the day of the concert. Please carpool if possible.

In the event of inclement weather, the concert will be moved indoors to the Chesterton High School Auditorium. If the concert is moved indoors, the information will be posted at the entrance to West Beach, on the park’s website, and on the park’s Facebook page

For information on this and other programs being offered this year at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, call 219-395-1882 or check the park’s website at


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