Safari Beach Tan has opened two new locations

Then-East Chicago Fire Department Paramedic Randy Anderson opened Safari Beach on 45th Avenue in Munster in the early 1980s and it quickly became a destination for those seeking a more bronze hue.

The tanning salon took off so much he was able to quit his job and work full-time as a business owner.

"It started as a side project and blew up from there," Anderson said.

His tanning business expanded to also include salons in Merrillville and Chicago. But in 2003, he sold them all to L.A. Tan, a chain that quickly spread around the Region.

Anderson opened a new Safari Beach Tan in Valparaiso in 2004 with standup booths he developed.

"It's a quicker way to tan and much cleaner," he said. "You don't have to touch anything, and it takes six to 10 minutes instead of 20 or 30 lying down. It's easier to keep cleaner."

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.