Top 14 Events in May

April 30, 2019

April showers bring May Flowers and there is no shortage of opportunities to get out and smell (or buy) flowers this month! We’ve compiled a list of markets, hikes, spring festivals and other top events happening in May that you won’t want to miss. Mark your calendars now so you don’t forget!


1:     May 1 – Dig the Dunes Beer Run, Michigan City, IN –

We are heading back to the gardens! Dig the Dunes is excited to head back to Friendship Botanic Gardens for another Beer Run! Route will be approximately 3 miles (shorter options available). Discover the beautiful gardens just as the flowers start to bloom. Return to the main gate for a delicious beer provided by Burn ‘Em. Additional beer will be available. This one is very popular! Runners and walkers welcome.

Price includes entrance to gardens, run, one beer & tip. Purchase your tickets in advance here. Cost is $7 at the door.


2:      May 1 – Coffee Creek Farmers Market, Chesterton, IN –

OPENING DAY – Producer Only Farmers Market. All items are made/grown/produced by vendors. Limited exceptions include seasonal fruit and sweet corn directly from other local farms. Farmers, Specialty Food Vendors, Food Trucks, Select Artisans.


3:      May 4 – Chesterton European Market Day, Chesterton, IN –

Chesterton’s European Market offers a strong tradition of quality shopping, live entertainment, and a festive community experience. Come join us every Saturday starting May 4 to October 26 to enjoy the ambiance of downtown Chesterton!


4:      May 4 – 3rd Annual Earth Day 5k Run/walk, Valparaiso, IN –

On-site registration starts at 7:30 am and race starts at 8:30 am. Early registration with t-shirt $30, after April 26th & on race day; $35- shirts not guaranteed. Tickets can be purchased here.

Awards for top finishers & gift card raffles immediately following race. Refreshments & food served after race.


5:     May 5 – Dig The Dunes Botany Hike, Three Oaks, MI –

Spend the afternoon with Dig the Dunes and Steve Sass as we explore Warren Woods State Park; one of the region’s premier places to view spring ephemeral wildflowers. Depending upon spring temperatures, wildflowers in bloom may include Bloodroot, Yellow Trout Lily, Hepatica, Dutchman’s Breeches, False Rue Anemone, Limestone Bittercress and much more. Steve is extremely knowledgeable and participants will learn a bit about the physiology, history and folklore of the plants along the way, and late April should provide us with a number of migratory birds to hear and observe as well. The relatively easy to walk path leads along the Galien River, and depending upon the weather, it could be muddy in spots, so participants should wear suitable footwear. Binoculars and cameras are also highly recommended accessories

Please note: This hike is 12:00 CST and 1:00 EST, Limited to 20 people. This hike typically sells out quickly. Tickets can be purchased here.


6:      May 10 – 5×5 at The Depot, Beverly Shores, IN –

5×5 at the Depot is an art exhibit with a twist. All the artwork is the same size, 5”x5”. All the artwork is donated by the artists. But each artwork is unique in concept and from a variety of media. There is a great deal or pre-event chatter with patrons discussing their favorite artists. Patrons “claim” artwork by using a pre-purchased claim ticket. Once a piece is claimed it remains in the exhibit for others to admire but it is no longer available for purchase. This is a fund raising exhibit, with all proceeds going to fund the Depot’s programming and projects.


7:     May 11 – Plant & Rummage Sale, Gary, IN –

With over 120 varieties and 3,000 native perennials, trees and shrubs to choose from, picking plants could be a daunting task. However, our garden gurus and master gardeners will help with garden design and plant selection, making the process fun: not scary. Also plan to watch live herb cooking demonstrations and demos on how to plant a planter while listening to live music.

Plan to Celebrate MOM by buying her favorite plants, some treasured knickknacks from our terrific rummage sale and treating her to a box lunch and pie from Marilyn’s Bakery.


8:     May 12 – Mother’s Day at the Zoo, Michigan City, IN –

Spend a special day making memories that will last a lifetime. The Washington Park Zoo will offer free admission for all mothers and grandmothers with a paid child admission.


9:     May 16 – Light Up Your Life! Lantern Making Class, Valparaiso, IN –

Wine lovers, this one is for you! Join Dig the Dunes and Jenny Rusboldt as we create a beautiful faux stained glass lantern.

Draw over wine glass, grapes and “cheers” templates with liquid leading to complete a design on each plane of glass. Then fill in the sections with vibrant stained glass colors. Once dried you can slide the colored glass back into your lantern. Add a candle and watch as the colors illuminate from inside, and onto your walls.

Class includes all materials, instruction and one glass of wine. Charcuterie and flatbreads are available for purchase.This event is 21 and over. Tickets can be purchased here.


10:      May 18 – Spring Out to Sunset Festival, Valparaiso, IN –

Join Porter County Parks for an annual celebration of Spring at Sunset Hill Farm County Park! The festival runs 12-4pm and includes family activities, farm animal visits, crafts, bounce houses, food vendors, and more. The Sunset Hill Colonels vintage baseball team will also play their home opener. The 2019 Spring Out festival will also feature an official Kansas City BBQ competition. More information can be found on the event website.

Entrance to the festival is only $5 per car. Visit our website at here to learn more.


11:      May 25 – Indiana Dunes Clean Up, Chesterton, IN –

Come and clean our beach of the trash left by others. Bags and gloves will be provided. You will meet at the pavilion and walk east toward Michigan City for one hour then walk back. Go at your own pace all are welcome.


12:      May 26 – Bailly/ Chellberg History Hike, Porter, IN –

Explore the grounds of both historic homes. Learn about early settlers and farmers who came to this region in the 1800s.

The Chellberg/Bailly parking lot is on Mineral Springs Road between U.S. 20 and Highway 12 in Porter, Indiana.

For more information on this or other programs at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, visit the Events Calendar at the park website here or contact the park’s information desk at 219-395-1882.


13:      May 26 – 8th Annual Oysterfest, Beverly Shores, IN –

Join Bartlett’s Gourmet Grill for their 8th annual Oysterfest!! This year they are heading to the bayou! Shuck your own oysters by the dozen, enjoy steamed creole crawfish, try a gulf shrimp boil with andouille sausage or a full slab of dry rubbed baby back ribs! All entrees include a southern inspired buffet with all the condiments and a ticket for beer or wine. Live zydeco music with Gerry Hundt and friends!

Full cash bar available. Cost is $38 per entree and includes full buffet of sides and one drink. Tickets can be purchased here.


14:      May 31 – Postcard Photo Contest!

Deadline May 31! Celebrate the Indiana Dunes! Dig the Dunes and Along the South Shore have teamed up to create a unique set of Indiana Dunes postcards, but we need YOUR help! We will be selecting 24 winners for our postcards and bundling them into 3 packs of 8.

All ages welcome!

To enter go to

1. Submit unique shots of trails, beaches, breweries, wineries, shops, landmarks, restaurants, etc. in and around the Indiana Dunes.
2. Clearly label location of the photograph
3. High-resolution photos must be available
4. You may ONLY submit up to 3 photos per person
5. The photo(s) selected will be used by the SSCVA and/or Dig the Dunes for future promotion/marketing purposes.


And one more!

June 1 – Jammin’ with Save the Dunes, Michigan City, IN –

It’s time again for Jammin with Save the Dunes!! Jammin is Save the Dunes signature fundraiser which brings hundreds of dunes lovers to beautiful Washington Park in Michigan City on the Lake Michigan shoreline. The festival features many of your favorite local breweries, local wineries and local food. 

Get your tickets today! Tickets are $20 online and $25 at the door. All beer is only $5 each and includes a signature recyclable plastic cup. Food and beverages are available for an additional cost. Not only is this an amazing deal to see these bands, but it supports a worthy cause! Purchase your tickets in advance here.




Welcome to Dig the Dunes!

Dig the Dunes uncovers all the secrets of the dunes! From trails and beaches, to people, places, events and even the history and geology. Visit our page frequently for fun facts and new adventures for you to embark upon!

We offer lots of classes like beach glass art, jewelry making, wine and canvas, hikes, comedy shows and more!

Questions or ideas? email us at