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LA Times Travel Writer Touts RV Centennial

Editor’s Note: Mary Forgione, Los Angeles Times daily travel and deal blogger, posted this short story about the RV Centennial.

It’s hard to believe that a century has slipped by since we started looking at vehicles as suitable places to eat, sleep and recreate, but 1910 marked the official dawn of RV civilization, in the view of the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association of Reston, Va.

In that year, camping trailers, or campers, were being mass-produced by Pierce-Arrow (a pricey model for the time was called a “Touring Landau”), Los Angeles Trailer Works and Auto-Kamp trailers, a report by the association says. And somehow these, and the flotilla of metallic Airstreams they spawned, morphed into behemoth RVs and mobile homes that carry folks to campgrounds and beyond every summer. Here are a couple of places to stop and experience the culture that all began with the Conestoga wagon:

The Rally 2010: Ten thousand RV enthusiasts are expected to converge Tuesday through Sunday at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville for entertainment, more than 150 seminars — from healthy cooking on the road to RV caravan travel — and a display of vintage RVs from 1937 to 1978. Comedian and actor Bob Newhart and country singer Tanya Tucker are scheduled to perform during the event. Camping prices, which include admission to activities, range from $149 to $369. Phone: (877) 749-7122.

The RV/MH Hall of Fame: This museum in Elkhart, Ind., showcases vintage recreational vehicles and motor homes, including an adorable 1915 Model T with a trailer built onto the back and a 1929 covered wagon trailer that does resemble an old Conestoga. The museum is open 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays. Admission is $8 for adults; $3 for kids ages 6 to 16. Phone: (800) 378-8694.

– Mary Forgione, Los Angeles Times Daily Travel & Deal blogger

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