Winnebagos crawled along the chalky-gray asphalt of a downtown RV park last week as another RV City was built.
RV City, a temporary motorhome park managed by the city next to Gator Bowl Boulevard in Jacksonville, Fla., springs up every year for the Georgia-Florida game, according to a report by the Florida Times Union. This year’s edition saw the Bulldogs pull out a 23-20 win last Saturday (Nov. 2).
Longtime denizens of the park, which is a parking lot picked for its vicinity to EverBank Field, say there’s a special atmosphere that they can only find in RV City.
Like a real city, there are pedestrians, police officers, party animals, grill masters, grandparents and sports fanatics. There are houses divided and baby Gators and actual bulldogs adopted to be Bulldogs. There’s even lakefront property.
The SEC showdown has attracted hordes of football fans every year since the Florida Gators and Georgia Bulldogs began duking it out in Jacksonville in 1933. But those in RV City like to get the party started well before the other revelers arrive.
Rent can get expensive — $125 a space per night, not including utilities — but visitors say it’s worth the price. Move-in day was Wednesday, and each area of RVs is said to have its own personality.
The subdivisions go like this: the north side has the best parties, the east bend has the best decorations and the south end is the place to be for a calmer, quieter cookout.
On the northern end of RV City sits Alligator Alley. Orange-and-blue golf carts dot the Gators-only strip of motor homes, and the stories of parties past linger in the hot midday air.
Linda Shiver, a Callahan resident who parked at the end of Alligator Alley, said a neighbor is expecting at least 70 guests.
“We hear it gets really crazy,” said Shiver, 55.
Nancy Wall, a Hawkinsville, Ga., resident and Georgia fan, said Alligator Alley regularly gets packed with fans shoulder-to-shoulder.
“They have to put their chairs up and everything because there are so many people,” said Wall, 62. “It gets wild up there.”
On the eastern end of the lot, next to a small lake under the shade of a highway overpass, the visitors deck out their temporary homes for the decoration competitions. Some aim for Halloween themes, while others opt for truckloads of SEC decor.
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