We are prepared to spend the rest of our lives if necessary to save the dunes."

–Dorothy Richardson Buell, Save the Dunes Founder

Join and Give

You can be an advocate to address the ongoing and emerging conservation threats affecting the Indiana dunes and Lake Michigan through membership. Please join at one of our existing or new elevated membership levels today! Together, we will find balanced solutions to complex problems that honor the lands and waters we love.

Here are several ways your Save the Dunes membership directly impacts our work:

Strengthen our Legal Standing

If we’ve learned anything over the years, it’s that no victory is permanent. When all other efforts have been exhausted and legal action is the only solution, we represent the interests of the dunes and Lake Michigan in court. Membership provides legal standing–demonstrating that Save the Dunes’ interests to protect area lands and water are supported by a number of individuals and families who share that same interest. Recent examples include efforts in court to defend the public trust, ensuring the public’s right to freely use the Lake Michigan shoreline for recreation.

Support Advocacy

Save the Dunes is responsive to existing and emerging threats to our region’s natural areas. Your membership donation allows us to use advocacy tools such as community training opportunities, listening forums, policy and permit review, and legal action to name a few. We also propose meaningful solutions to advance the dunes and Lake Michigan’s ongoing protection. Without your Membership, these efforts would not be possible. 

Be a Change Agent

Save the Dunes’ members have the privilege to influence the direction, decision-making, and activities undertaken by the organization. Members are invited to attend our December annual meeting to vote on Board leadership and to learn more about programmatic efforts and how to get involved. 


Individual $40

Household $60

The Dunes Club (New!)

Pollinator Protector $100

Wetland Warrior $250

Dune Defender $500

Coastal Champion $1,000

Save the Dunes strives to be an inclusive organization. Individuals who wish to be members of Save the Dunes but cannot afford to pay the full member dues are encouraged to apply to our membership assistance program. Please contact office@savedunes.org to learn more and apply today.

Make a gift to support the Indiana Dunes & Lake Michigan

Leave a legacy

Making a planned gift is a way to create a lasting legacy of protection for the dunes, and could provide tax benefits for you today.

Planned Giving Options

Make a stock contribution

A donation of appreciated stock will reduce your tax burden while making a significant gift for conservation. Donating appreciated securities provides dual tax benefits. When you transfer stock to Save the Dunes, you receive an income-tax deduction of the fair market value of the stock, and you’ll avoid paying capital gains on the securities you donate.

Name Save the Dunes as a beneficiary

Naming Save the Dunes as a beneficiary of your life insurance or retirement plan can be one of the easiest ways to make a significant gift. Donating a portion of these plans could allow your loved ones to avoid income and estate taxes on the donated amount. You may choose a percentage or designated amount to leave for each beneficiary or name Save the Dunes as a contingent beneficiary.

Receive income through a charitable gift annuity

Receive income for life while benefiting nature with a charitable gift annuity. Make a gift of cash or appreciated stock to establish your annuity, and you’ll receive a tax deduction now for a portion of your payment and a fixed payment every year for the rest of your life. The remainder will support the mission of Save the Dunes.

Donate personal property

Making a gift of your personal property  (from land to artwork to vehicles) will provide a significant gift while allowing you to enjoy immediate tax benefits. Save the Dunes may elect to hold the property or sell it at some point in the future and use the proceeds for its programs. It is important that you contact Save the Dunes to make certain we can care for your property before initiating your gift.


Estate giving provides flexibility

Making a gift through your will or trust allows you to provide a future gift to Save the Dunes while retaining control of your assets during your lifetime.

There is no upper limit on the estate tax deductions that can be taken for charitable bequests, and you can maximize your tax benefits by donating your most-taxed assets while passing those with lesser tax demands to your loved ones.

Our Tax ID is 35-1915468.

Already included Save the Dunes in your estate plans? Thank you! Please let us know.


To maximize regional effectiveness, we encourage you to volunteer directly with the Indiana Dunes National Park or Indiana Dunes State Park.

The Indiana Dunes are made up of sand grains that are mainly composed of the mineral quartz.

Quartz is the same mineral that is in glass, and the sand grains create an interesting sound when you walk on it, called “singing sands.”There are few other places in the world that have singing sands, including Dubai and Japan.