Michigan City is a city in LaPorte County, Indiana, USA. It is one of two principal cities of and is included in the Michigan City-La Porte, Indiana Metropolitan Statistical Area, which is included in the Chicago-Naperville-Michigan City Combined Statistical Area.It is also part of an area known to locals as Michiana. It is approximately 50 miles east of Chicago and 40 miles west of South Bend. The population was 32,900 at the 2000 census.
Michigan City is noted for both its proximity to the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore and for its bordering Lake Michigan; because of this, Michigan City receives a fair amount of tourism during the summer months, especially by residents of Chicago and parts of Indiana.
There were 12,550 households out of which 30.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 40.0% were married couples living together, 18.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.0% were non-families. 30.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.41 and the average family size was 3.02.
In the city the population was spread out with 25.0% under the age of 18, 9.6% from 18 to 24, 30.8% from 25 to 44, 20.6% from 45 to 64, and 14.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 101.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 100.9 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $33,732, and the median income for a family was $39,520. Males had a median income of $32,194 versus $23,125 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,995. About 10.4% of families and 13.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 20.2% of those under age 18 and 9.5% of those age 65 or over.
Michigan City Area Schools, the city's public school system, includes one high school (Michigan City High School), three middle schools, and nine elementary schools. Michigan City also has three parochial high schools - Marquette, La Lumiere, and Duneland Lutheran. There are several parochial elementary schools in the city, including St. Paul Lutheran School, St. Stanislaus Kostka School, Queen Of All Saints, and Notre Dame Catholic School. At one time Michigan City had two public high schools, M.C. Elston High School (Red Devils)(Elston is now the name of one of the middle schools located in the city and is located at the former Elston High School), and M.C. Rogers High School (Raiders). The two schools combined after the 1994-1995 school year and now constitute the present day Michigan City High School. The school is located at the former Rogers High School site.
Michigan City is the home of the Old Michigan City Light, one of Indiana's few lighthouses. Michigan City's largest shopping center, Lighthouse Place Outlet Mall, which was built in the mid 1980s, pays homage to the lighthouse. Marquette Mall, constructed in 1965, is Michigan City's sole conventional shopping mall. St. Anthony Memorial Health Center is Michigan City's sole hospital.
In terms of media, Michigan City has one daily newspaper, The News-Dispatch. It also has one FM radio station, WEFM, and one AM radio station, WIMS, together with one government access cable TV station, Access LaPorte County. Michigan City is in Chicago's Area of Dominant Influence. Radio and Television broadcasts from both Chicago and South Bend reach most of the population. There are also a couple of websites which offer information and gathering points to the community in We are MC and City by the Lake Michigan City also houses a zoo, and features on its outskirts the Indiana State Prison.
Known for its many talented musicians, Michigan City also has one of the nation's oldest active municipal bands. Free concerts are performed for the public every Thursday evening at the Guy F. Foreman Amphitheatre located in Washington Park.
The eastern edge of the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore is also located in Michigan City. Features include Mount Baldy, a large wandering dune. A larger dune, Hoosier Slide, sat at the site of the current electrical generating station. This dune was mined for its sand in the late 19th century. The sand found on the beaches in and near Michigan City is nicknamed "singing sand" because of the sound it produces.
In recent years, Michigan City has added a riverboat, The Blue Chip Casino. This casino is the largest riverboat in Indiana. The Blue Chip is currently in the midst of building the biggest building in all of northwest Indiana by adding a 22 story hotel to its offerings. Michigan City has also added a new skatepark at Pullman Field to its tourism offerings.
Mayor Chuck Oberlie was sworn in as Michigan City’s 39th mayor on January 1, 2004. Michigan City has a Council with nine members. Six are elected from geographic wards and three are elected as at-large members.
The following are the City Council members
Richard Murphy First Ward
Marc Espar Second Ward
Ron Meer Third Ward
Patricia Boy Fourth Ward
Willie Milsap Fifth Ward
Phillip Jankowski Sixth Ward
Joseph Doyle Councilman At-Large
Angela Nelson Councilwoman At-Large
Robert McKee Councilman At-Large
Michigan City is a major stop along the South Shore Line, one of the last interurban rail lines in the U.S. The train runs directly through on 11th Street (it has no separate right-of-way, and shares the street with automobiles and other road traffic), making two stops in Michigan City's downtown area (11th Street and Carroll Avenue).
Michigan City Municipal Airport has a 4100-foot runway and averages 118 operations per week.