Piping Plover photo by Craig Sterken

Experience Hammond, Indiana!

Triple-Dog-Dare You to Visit Hammond!

Straddling Indiana’s border with Illinois sits Hammond, a city that thrives despite the decline of factory communities along the southern tip of Lake Michigan. This, folks, is the place that inspired A Christmas Story. You’ll find a nice mix of culture and wilderness here that gives you plenty of options when planning your stop, whether for a quick breather or a long rest.

Windsurf Wolf Lake and enjoy its Memorial Park
Step into the past at the Gibson Woods Nature Reserve
Birdwatch at Hammond Lakefront Park and Bird Sanctuary
Play a hand or see a band at the Horseshoe Casino and Venue
Stand and ovate at the Towle Theater
Blast off at the Challenger Learning Center
Appreciate imagination at Paul Henry’s Art Gallery

Want to know the best place around for windsurfing? Wolf Lake has all the breeze of the Windy City but its flatter water lets you really pick up some speed. Of course, for those that like a little less excitement, Wolf Lake also is great for a leisurely canoe trip or scenic paddle in a kayak. Wolf Lake Memorial Park boasts wonderful walking paths, bike paths and trails through a remarkably biodiverse green pocket smack dab in the middle of Southern Lake Michigan’s industrial belt.

Gibson Woods Nature Reserve is a little time capsule of land kept as natural as possible over the past 4000 years. It’s available to explore via rapproximately 1.5 miles of trail that provide a nice little walk through Indiana’s native foliage.

Appreciate a good bird? Hammond Lakefront Park and Bird Sanctuary is a great place to spot a few. With native species and migratory birds taking advantage of this sheltered strip of land with its own little stretch of Lake Michigan beach, it’s a great place to get away from the hustle and bustle and to get little more birdsong in your life.

The Festival of Lakes rolls into Hammond once a year, bringing fun along with it. The revelries call Wolf Lake Memorial Park home, with bands playing in its Frank Lloyd Wright inspired pavilion, affectionately known as the PAV, and games, rides and food available in the surrounding grounds.

Any day of the year, a good time can be had at the Horseshoe Casino, or at its entertainment venue, known simply as The Venue which features concerts and shows from some big names in entertainment. Whether you’re feeling lucky, or feeling the beat, the Horseshoe has you covered.

For a cozier production, visit the Towle theater and take in one of their wonderfully performed plays. Musical, comedy, tragedy, it’s all good. Just sit back and be entertained.

Paul Henry’s Art Gallery shows off the work of local artists, as well as hosting classes and jam sessions. It’s a laid-back place to take in beauty in all its many forms.

Leave with more fun and knowledge than you came with by visiting the Challenger Learning Center for a planetarium experience or a lightshow. If you’re in the area during one of their public events, definitely take the opportunity to attend as there’s sure to be plenty of scienc-y fun for everyone and all proceeds go to their school programs, which let kids go on simulated missions while learning more about our solar system and what it takes to explore it.

Hammond walks the line between culture and nature as gracefully as it balances the Indiana/Illinois border. So whatever you’re in the mood for, come find it in Hammond.

For more travel information about Hammond, Indiana, please contact this tourism resource:

Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce
5246 Hohman Avenue, Suite 100
Hammond, IN 46320
(219) 931-1000