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      Tourist Park Dam fully restored

      After nine long years, Marquette City officials, workers, and the community celebrate the opening of the fully restored Tourist Park Dam.

      Project Manager, Eric Booth, says it's a big deal.

      "This is a big milestone for us. This is something historic and significant for our community. It just gives us an opportunity to share that," said Booth.

      It was destroyed in the 2003 Dead River flood, where the Silver Lake Dam gave way because of a combination of excess runoff and heavy rain in the spring. The beach at the basin of Tourist Park, a popular fishing and swimming spot, was also destroyed in the process.

      Assistant City Manager, Karl Zueger, says the flood had an economic impact at Tourist Park.

      "We did have a significant percentage of decrease the year following. We tended to have those numbers come back over the years so we are at where we were in 2004," said Zueger.

      Families will now be able to go fishing and enjoy the restored beach, and it will also have on duty lifeguards.

      The new dam is designed to handle higher water levels with a back-up runoff area.

      "We have two spillways now. What that does for us is it increases the capacity to handle a large scale flood. So if the Silver Lake flood were to happen again today, God forbid, we could pass it. Where in the past, it wasn't set up for that," Booth said.

      It cost five million dollars to fix, and many local workers were part of the team that completed the project.

      While the water levels are low, they will get higher, once the dam gets filled in the next couple of weeks.