Evanston dog owners should be able to let their pets romp on the beach this summer after all.

City officials had said they didn’t believe they’d be able to open the city’s dog beach, located just north of the Church Street boat ramp, because rising Lake Michigan water levels had eroded most of the sand away.

But Parks Director Lawrence Hemingway told aldermen Monday night that city staffer’s believe they’ve come up with a solution.

He says they’re using sand dredged from the boat ramp to build a new dog beach just south of the ramp, in what hopefully will be a more sheltered location, better protected from the waves.

An undated image from Google Earth, showing the since-eroded dog beach on the right, and the area now being filled with sand just to the left of the boat launch.

Hemingway says he’s hoping the new area — which will be about 90 feet long by 12 to 20 feet wide — won’t wash away.

He said the plan is to fence off the area to keep the dogs from floating over onto the Greenwood Street beach for people further to the south and that he hopes to have the new dog beach open by Memorial Day.

Related stories

Dog beach gone? Just wait, it will return (5/3/16)

High water levels delay dog beach opening (3/25/16)

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

Join the Conversation


  1. Thank Goodness!
    I am so happy to hear the city will be spending the material and labor dollars necessary to placate the poor pooches of Evanston. I know my pup has been seriously depressed since he read that he would not be able to swim in the beautiful waters of Lake Michigan 2.2 miles to the east of our home. All he has done since is lay around and howl about his great memories from years past and all the good times he was expecting this summer. Oh, and my kids are super excited to go to the dog beach and manage the mutt instead of going to the people beach to create memories which will actually matter in their human lives. And the best part is when the water recedes in the next few years we will have two dog beaches! You know what’s better than one dog beach? Two dog beaches!!!

    1. There is really no need for

      There is really no need for such rude comments "concerned dog owner." Why do you have a problem with there being a place where families can take their dog and enjoy some down time? Many dog owners in evanston live in appartments or in houses with tiny yards with no place for a dog to run. This gives them a place to go an enjoy time with family and pet. My kid not only love going to dog beach with their pup but actually go in groups with their friends and their pups. and having such places make evanston more livable and more marketably and therefore help increase property values.


      1. Well maybe you poor oppressed
        Well maybe you poor oppressed dog owners should raise the money privately for this. Or Evanston can implement a dog tax so Evanston taxpayers who don’t own worthless wasteful animals don’t have to pay for them dirtying our lakefront.

        1. There already is a dog tax
          1) It’s called a license, and to be able to use the dog beach, your dog MUST have one.
          2) Use of the dog beach is NOT free, pet owners pay for the privilege to use the beach area (same as the shared Skokie/Evanston Dog Park)
          3) Dog owners are required to clean up after their animals at both the beach & park locations.

          It’s the city’s fault for not planning ahead for repairs and improvements and now it’s a mad rush to fix that Cash Cow they thought to milk until it ran dry.

    2. Dear Concerned Dog Owner

      Dear Concerned Dog Owner—our dogs (and cats and other pets) are integral members of our family. The love and responsibility we feel for them is just as real and valid as our love for the human members of our family. Dogs, pets, animals enrich my life and the lives of my children. When we go to the dog beach to play with and exercise our dogs as a family, WE ARE making real memories that will last a lifetime. Not only does it give my kids a chance to exercise, run around and play in the water (just like they can at the human beach), it teaches them respect for animals and nature, and gives them a chance to meet new people and dogs. Honestly, it's WAY more interactive than the human beach. I don't know the last time I fell into an hour long conversation with someone at the human beach, but it happens all of the time at the dog beach. You see, it's not just for dogs—it's really for the people. You may not share our views, our love or our compassion for animals—and that's ok, I respect your opinion—but that doesn't give you the right to belittle ours. By the way, we pay for permits to use the dog beach, so Evanston receives revenue for maintenance. And, there is TONS of beach space and park space dedicated to humans—this 90' x 20' stretch of land is a miniscule percentage of that. If you have grievances or questions about how funds or materials are alocated, please take them up with the city, not with your neighbors. Thanks.

  2. Insulting our Neighbors
    Bill – when comments are not additive or constructive, why allow them to be posted? Seriously, attacking people for liking dogs and calling dogs worthless is sure to incite animosity at best. People that post such vitriol are not helping anything. In fact, they are hindering with hate. I know you moderate and in the early years of this site, I know you made an effort to keep it civil. Can’t we make an effort to get back to a shared sense of community with well-thought out and rationally shared opinions?

    1. So many of the negative

      So many of the negative commenters on this site don't want to spend tax money for *anything.* I wouldn't take it personally. 

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