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Controlled fire planned in Gary's Miller neighborhood

A wooded area in Gary's Miller neighborhood. A controlled fire is planned by the Marquette Trail in the Miller Section of Gary Monday.

Don't be alarmed if you see smoke off in the distance, because the National Park Service plans to burn around 37 acres of Indiana Dunes National Park land in Gary's Miller neighborhood Monday.

The controlled burn along the Marquette Trail in the lakefront Miller Section of Gary aims to reduce fire hazards, restore natural habitat and boost ecosystem health in the Miller Woods, which is part of the 15-acre-long stretch of nature along the southern shore of Lake Michigan that's managed by the National Parks Service.

"Prescribed fire in this area helps to reduce the risk of wildfires to the Miller Neighborhood while also restoring natural plant and wildlife habitat," Fire Information Officer Micah Bell with the Porter-based Great Lakes Fire Management Zone said in a press release.

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The prescribed fire Monday will take place north of the Marquette Trail, immediately east of the New Gary Middle School and south of Hemlock, Hickory and Lakewood Avenues in Gary's Miller Beach neighborhood. Fire crews will begin the burn at around noon and expect to have it wrapped up by 3 p.m.

For more information or updates, check facebook.com/IndianaDunesNPS

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Business Reporter

Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.