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Tippecanoe River SP to dedicate Otter Bend Picnic Area
Start Date: 7/20/2020
Event Description:

Tippecanoe River State Park will celebrate the opening of Otter Bend Picnic Area with a ceremony on July 30 at 11 a.m. 

Early arrival is recommended for the ceremony, and guests will be advised of parking locations upon arrival. Shuttles from the parking area to the picnic area will run from 10 to 11 a.m.

This picnic area is located along the Tippecanoe River at the site of the Hilgemeier property, which was a 40-acre inholding in the park until it was purchased through the Indiana Heritage Trust, now the President Benjamin Harrison Conservation Trust, in 2007.

Picnic area development was preceded by a bank stabilization project funded through DNR’s Lake and River Enhancement (LARE) program, Indiana State Parks, and a variety of partners including the Pulaski County Soil & Water Conservation District, Arrow Head RC&D, First National Bank of Monterey, NIPSCO, Carroll White’s Operation Round Up, Fulton County REMC’s Operation Round Up, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Kevin Podell and The Nature Conservancy.

“Tippecanoe River State Park is truly a ‘home park’ for communities in Pulaski County and surrounding counties as well,” said Vernon Gillum, property manager. “We’re so grateful for the support we have received for the development of this site, which now provides access to the Tippecanoe River in a beautiful location for all Hoosiers.”

Tippecanoe River State Park was established in 1943 when it was turned over to the State of Indiana after initial development by the National Park Service as a Recreation Demonstration Area (RDA). The park’s eastern border winds for 7 miles along the banks of the Tippecanoe River, known for its recreational value, its high water quality and habitat for many species of mussels, including at least five that are currently federally endangered.

A two-story home on the site was used by three generations of the Hilgemeier family as a riverside retreat. It was removed after research and documentation as required by the Division of Historic Preservation & Archaeology, and several significant artifacts that lend meaning to the family’s history were preserved. Interpretive signage has been installed to remind guests of the site’s previous uses. The Indiana State Parks maintenance crew developed a road to the site, and park staff have prepared it for picnickers.

Light refreshments will be provided after the dedication, courtesy of the Friends of Tippecanoe River State Park group. Guests can enjoy a variety of family-friendly activities related to river ecology and history as well.

Tippecanoe River State Park ( is at 4200 N. U.S. 35, Winamac, IN 46996

To view all DNR news releases, please see

Contact Information:
Name: Ginger Murphy
Phone: 317-232-4143
State calendar entry type:
Press Release
State calendar entry category:
State calendar classification:
  • Residents
  • Visiting and Playing
  • Agency Name:
  • Natural Resources, Department of

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