Dealers Pleased with Revived New Mexico Show

April 1, 2011 by · Comments Off on Dealers Pleased with Revived New Mexico Show 

Outdoor recreation enthusiasts turned out in high numbers as the crowded show floors resulted in steady sales this past weekend at the inaugural New Mexico RV, Boat & Travel Show, staged in Albuquerque and sponsored by DISH Network and Affinity Events.

New Mexico’s largest RV and boat indoor show of the year featured over 130 units as well as exhibits on campgrounds and accessories and entertainment.

“Both sales and attendance were strong, and the response from dealers and exhibitors alike was overwhelmingly positive. Albuquerque seemed to be waiting for a show like this to come back to town,” according to a news release.

“The turnout at the New Mexico RV, Boat & Travel Show exceeded everyone’s expectations, and sales were beyond what were projected,” said Jim Sibert, show manager. “Many high dollar RV units were contracted, as well as dozens of boat sales, and, according to the participating dealers, we look forward to many follow up sales to be made. It was an extremely positive show from move in to move out. There is no doubt that this first year show has legs to last for many years to come.”

Dealers had these comments:

  • Dan Ayers, sales manager of Aloha RV and Marine, was thrilled with the response. “The  show was awesome. There were a lot of people from the moment the doors opened Friday morning, and it didn’t quit. The crowd was diverse and ready to buy, for all types of models, and sales were excellent. We are ready to book our same spot for next year’s show!”
  • Jeff McCartney of Myers RVs concurred that interest was strong. “Given the already strong time of season for the industry and the fact that it was a new show, we opted for a smaller display space. However, we were happy to see that traffic was good, deals were written and there was continued interest in the market.”
  • Dane Wyatt, general manager of Camping World RV Sales of Albuquerque, saw measurable growth for the show as well. “We were very pleased with the traffic generated at the show and our sales results with both our RVs and accessories.”
  • Kathy Chowning of RV Sales of Moriarty agreed. “It has been a while since Albuquerque has had a show, and the attendees seemed ready to get out and shop. The crowd filtered through really well, and our first two days in particular were very successful. We have been busy ever since and are still benefiting with our after-show sales.”

Affinity Events is a division of Affinity Group Inc. Visit for information about upcoming consumer shows, exhibitor lists and discounted online tickets to the shows.

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Record Attendance at Mid-America RV Show

February 3, 2011 by · Comments Off on Record Attendance at Mid-America RV Show 

RV enthusiasts turned out in record high numbers this past weekend at the Affinity Events Mid-America RV Show in Kansas City, Mo., sponsored by DISH Network.

Attendees had the opportunity to see 2011 Class A, B, and C motorhomes, travel trailers, fifth-wheels, folding campers, park models and more from leading dealers in the region, according to a news release.

Show Manager Jess Bodelson said, “I’ve produced the Mid-America RV Show for six years and this year’s show out performed all the previous shows in attendance and sales.”

According to Show Promoter Patrick Riha, “This year’s show was the highest in ticket sales for a four-day show since the year 2000. Many dealers reported strong sales and were very happy with the results.”

John Wilbanks, salesman at Wilder RV, agreed, “The show was great with a lot of traffic and good flow. Saturday was the busiest day for us with quite a few RV sales. We were definitely satisfied with the turnout.”

Barry Lawson of Lifestyle RVs concurred, “The attendee traffic was great — by far our best show ever. Sales were up and we are excited to be back next year.”

As a family friendly event, attendees also had the chance to see over 75 different reptile species during Danny Connor’s Reptile Adventures show and learn how to cook delicious, yet reasonable campground dishes during the Ultimate Camp Cooking seminars with celebrity chefs Pat Mac and Mike Faverman.

Affinity Events is sponsoring upcoming RV shows in Minneapolis, Minn., Richmond, Va., Wichita, Kan., Charlotte, N.C., Atlantic City, N.J., Denver, Colo., Providence, R.I., Greenville, S.C., Raleigh, N.C., and Albuquerque, N.M. These shows will feature a variety of RVs, campground information and accessories along with expert advice and entertainment. Visit for information about upcoming consumer shows, exhibitor lists and discounted online tickets to the shows.

Affinity Events is affiliated with Affinity Group Inc. (AGI), parent company of

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Early-Season RV Shows Off to Strong Start

January 19, 2011 by · Comments Off on Early-Season RV Shows Off to Strong Start 

RV enthusiasts flocked to shows all over the country last week, including the 21st Annual Colorado RV Adventure Travel Show, 81st Annual Chicago Boat, RV, & Outdoors Show and the 25th Annual Washington Camping RV Expo.

The shows set up in Denver, Chicago and Chantilly, Va., filling the venues with 2011 Class A, B and C motorhomes, travel trailers, fifth-wheels, toy haulers, truck campers and tent trailers, as well as information on campgrounds, RV and camping accessories and entertainment.

All three shows reported impressive sales and steady high attendance, leading many to look forward to strong post-recession RV sales, according to a news release.

According to Dianne Seymour, show manager of the Colorado RV Adventure Travel Show, “The show was a great success. All of the RV dealers sold above and beyond what they had anticipated, with people coming to the show ready to buy.”

Jim Humble of Windish RV Center, agreed. “It was a fantastic show for us and it more than exceeded our expectations. We are up 45% in unit sales over last year and look forward to doing it again next year.”

According to Regional Manager Vilma Fraguada, “The success of the dealers at the Colorado RV Adventure Show validates earlier comments by RVIA that the RV industry is recovering from the recession. Consumer confidence continues to rise and the number of qualified buyers at the show makes that evident.”

At the same time, the Chicago RV Pavilion at the Chicago Boat, RV, & Outdoors Show had a similar positive turnout. John Slick of Collier RV Center said, “The turnout was phenomenal with better than expected attendance. We were overwhelmed, yet pleasantly surprised, by all the excited and enthusiastic attendee traffic.”

Chicago RV Pavilion Show Manager Harry Lutz, concurred. “The attendance was great and our dealers sold a lot of product. We received many compliments and are excited to see how the rest of show season goes.”

At the Washington Camping RV Expo, Show Manager Dave Body said, “The attendance was strong, comparable to our banner show last year, but with an increased amount of selling. The attendees were happy, the dealers were pleased and many of the campgrounds ran out of literature early each day.”

Robert Lentz, sales manager at Chesaco RV, agreed. “Since the show this past weekend, we’ve had a tremendous amount of direct responses through phones calls, appointments, and customer activity on our lot. The show definitely helped get our name out and we are more than pleased with the results.”

Affinity Events welcomes RV enthusiasts to get ready for the great outdoors with upcoming RV shows in Edison, N.J.; Kansas City, Mo.; Minneapolis, Minn.; Richmond, Va.; Atlantic City, N.J.; Denver, Colo.; Providence, R.I.; Greenville, S.C.; Raleigh, N.C.; and Albuquerque, N.M. These shows will feature a variety of RVs, campground information and accessories along with expert advice and entertainment.

Visit for information about upcoming consumer shows, exhibitor lists and discounted online tickets to the shows.

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Affinity Events to Run 25 RV Shows in 2011

November 10, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

43rd Annual St. Paul RV, Vacation and Camping Show held Feb 9, 2010

43rd Annual Minneapolis/St. Paul RV, Vacation and Camping Show held Feb 9, 2010.

Affinity Group Inc.’s (AGI) Affinity Events division has added three new RV shows to its roster in 2011 for a total of 25, including management of the RV component of the prestigious Chicago Boat and RV Show Jan. 12-16 at McCormack Place.

”The RV side of that show has really gone down hill,” said Tom Gaither, AGI Events senior vice president. ”We are taking over the RV pavilion side of the Chicago show, which is a new venue for us. They realize we can make a difference.”

Other new shows include the South Carolina RV and Camping Show March 11-13 at the Greenville Convention Center and the New Mexico RV and Travel Show March 24-27 at the Albuquerque Convention Center. Both shows previously had been organized by local dealers.

In 2010, more than 225,000 consumers attended AGI’s 22 RV shows which spanned the nation from coast to coast.

”We had a 24% increase in attendance at all of our shows last year,” said Gaither, a manufacturers’ rep for 15 years for Fleetwood Enterprises Inc., Pilgrim Inc. and Georgie Boy Manufacturing Inc. ”During the recession as customers went shopping on dealers’ lots, they saw a lot fewer floorplans. At our shows, people can look at all the RVs under one tent so they can compare.”

Gaither predicted that with RV sales on the rise coming out of the recession, show attendance in 2011 will be up across the board. ”I think dealers are finding pretty good leads at these shows — sometimes more than they will see on their lots all year,” he said.

The largest shows are the January Chicago Boat and RV Show, which draws in excess of 35,000 people, the Minneapolis/St. Paul RV, Vacation and Camping Show that brings in some 25,000 attendees and two Denver shows, the Colorado RV Adventure Travel Show in January and the Colorado RV, Sports, Boat and Travel Show, where attendance is in excess of 20,000.

Tom Gaither

Tom Gaither

Special programs are available for dealers, including posting RVs in a ”Screamin’ Deals” section on the website set up for each individual show. ”As consumers walk around the show site, they can look for the ‘Screamin’ Deals,” Gaither said.

And dealers participating in shows also can post 30 RVs for free on AGI’s website for up to 30 days. ”I tell dealers to do it after the show so that they can carry the momentum over,” Gaither said. ”It’s another incentive to help the dealers sell.”

Primarily, AGI shows are staged almost weekly — sometimes more than one each week — between January and early April, and then kick in again in August through October at a somewhat reduced pace.

”The shows are mostly divided between spring and fall,” Gaither said. ”We do the shoulder seasons so that dealers can get a boost. We typically don’t do shows in the summer because dealers usually are busy with their lot traffic. The spring shows set up the summer season and the fall shows help dealers clean out inventory to help them get ready for spring.”

Two types of consumers attend AGI shows, Gaither said. ” There are people looking for RVs and people who have RVs who are looking for things to do with them,” he said.

For consumers buying RVs during a show, Affinity Events awards an ”RV Getaway Gift Package” valued at $500 that includes a one-year membership in AGI’s Good Sam Club along with a six-month membership in the Good Sam Club Emergency Road Service; a dry-camping site at AGI’s ”The Rally;” a one-year membership in Camp Club USA; a copy of the Trailer Life RV Parks & Campground Directory; and a subscription to Trailer Life or MotorHome magazines.

”It’s a nice starter package for somebody who just bought an RV,” Gaither offered.

Also for consumers attending a show, AGI presents educational seminars and activities that promote the RV lifestyle, including the Ultimate Camp Cooking Show with comedians Mike Faverman and Pat Mac; travel adventurer John Holod; and Dave Solberg, the ”RV Handyman” who advises consumers on what to look for when buying an RV, all of whom appear occasionally.

”We want to get people to want to use an RV,” Gaither said.

Here’s a rundown of AGI’s 2011 RV show lineup:

  • Jan. 7-9 — 22nd Annual North Carolina RV & Camping Show, Greensboro Coliseum, Greensboro, N.C.
  • Jan. 12-15 — 21st Annual Colorado RV Adventure Travel Show, Colorado Convention Center, Denver, Colo.
  • Jan. 12-16 — 81st Annual Chicago Boat, RV and Outdoors Show, McCormick Place, Chicago, Ill.
  • Jan. 14-16 — 25th Annual Washington Camping RV Expo, Dulles Expo Center, Chantilly, Va.
  • Jan. 21-23 — 44th Annual New Jersey RV and Camping Show, New Jersey Convention Center, Edison, N.J.
  • Jan. 27-30 — Mid-America RV Show, Bartle Hall, Kansas City, Mo.
  • Feb. 10-13 — 44th Annual Minneapolis/St. Paul RV, Vacation & Camping Show, Minneapolis Convention Center, Minneapolis, Minn.
  • Feb 11-13 — 26th Annual Richmond Camping RV Expo, Richmond Raceway Complex, Richmond, Va.
  • Feb. 17-20 — 57th Annual Kansas Sports, Boat & Travel Show, Kansas Coliseum, Wichita, Kan.
  • Feb. 18-20 — 22nd Annual Las Vegas Sportsmen’s RV & Travel Show, Cashman Center, Las Vegas, Nev.
  • Feb. 25-27 — 21st Annual North Carolina RV & Camping Show, Charlotte Convention Center, Charlotte, N.C.
  • Feb. 25-27 — 16th Annual Atlantic City RV & Camping Show, Atlantic City Convention Center, Atlantic City, N.J.
  • March 3-6 — 54th Annual Colorado RV, Sports, Boat & Travel Show, National Western Complex, Denver, Colo.
  • March 4-6 — 18th Annual Rhode Island RV & Camping Show, Rhode Island Convention Center, Providence, R.I.
  • March 11-13 — 7th Annual Virginia RV Show Hampton Roads Convention Center, Hampton, Va.
  • March 11-13 — South Carolina RV & Camping Show, Greenville Convention Center, Greenville, S.C.
  • March 18-20 — 22nd Annual North Carolina RV & Camping Show, North Carolina State Fairgrounds, Raleigh, N.C.
  • March 24-27 — New Mexico RV & Travel Show, Albuquerque Convention Center, Albuquerque, N.M.
  • April 7-10 — 6th Annual Pomona RV & Travel Show, Pomona Fairplex, Pomona, Calif.
  • Aug. 12-13 — Colorado RV Liquidation Super Sale, INVESCO Field at Mile High, Denver, Colo.
  • Aug. 19-21 — 17th Annual Summer Boat & RV Super Sale, Richmond Raceway Complex, Richmond, Va.
  • Sept. 9-11 — 10th Annual North Carolina Fall RV Show & Sale, Greensboro Coliseum, Greensboro, N.C.
  • Sept. 23-25 — North Carolina Fall RV Show & Sale, The Park, Charlotte, N.C.
  • Sept. 30-Oct. 2 — 14th Annual Fall Rhode Island RV Show, Rhode Island Convention Center, Providence, R.I.
  • Oct. 28-30 — 18th Annual Fall Atlantic City RV Show, Atlantic City Convention Center, Atlantic City, N.J.
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Affinity & NMMA Partner in Chicago Show

August 11, 2010 by · Comments Off on Affinity & NMMA Partner in Chicago Show 

The National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) announced today (Aug. 11) it is joining forces with Affinity Group Inc.’s (AGI) Affinity Events to produce the 81st Annual Chicago Boat, RV & Outdoors Show in 2011 in order to strengthen the depth and breadth of the RV Pavilion at the largest outdoors show in the Midwest.

“We’re pleased to partner with Affinity Events and combine our strengths in the boating and recreational vehicle industries to produce an outstanding event for Midwestern outdoorsmen,”Ben Wold, executive vice president of NMMA, stated in a news release. “Our partnership will allow the 2011 show to offer the best of both industries and will contain significantly more boating and RV product, features, events and seminars than in recent years – becoming a must-attend for both outdoor industry companies and enthusiasts.”

Affinity Events has agreed to oversee all aspects of the Chicago Boat, RV & Outdoors Show’s RV Pavilion, which will consist of more than 100,000 square feet of a number of RV models from the region’s leading RV dealers, plus exhibits of campground destinations, RV products and accessories. There will also be a variety of RV-related features, seminars and entertainment.

“We’ve worked with NMMA on several projects in the past, and we look forward to forging a strong partnership with this event,” said Steve Hedlund, president of Affinity Media & Events. “Our goal is two-fold. We intend to strengthen the value provided to RV enthusiasts in the Chicago area by leveraging our knowledge and media assets in order to bring more RVs, product, information and education to the show. Furthermore, we’ll help exhibitors connect with their target audiences by aggressively tapping into the marketing power of our affiliated companies including the Good Sam Club, MotorHome, Trailer Life and Camping Life magazines in order to bring qualified buyers to the show.”

Affinity Events,  a division of Affinity Group Inc. (AGI), is the nation’s largest provider of outdoor recreation clubs, services, media and events. The company currently produces 21 RV shows throughout the United States.

The 2011 Chicago Boat, RV & Outdoors Show will take place Jan, 12 -16, 2011, at McCormick Place.

AGI is the parent company of

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RVs & Boats in Spotlight at AGI’s Pomona Show

June 14, 2010 by · Comments Off on RVs & Boats in Spotlight at AGI’s Pomona Show 

Pomona Boat & RV Super Sale logoThe nation’s boating and RV industries have weathered a severe slowdown in business as consumers grapple with job losses, home foreclosures and a general flatlining of the economy.

But representatives from the two industries say things are beginning to pick up. And consumers will get an up-close look at some of the newest models at next week’s Boat & RV Summer Super Sale at the Fairplex in Pomona, Calif., according to the San Gabriel Valley Tribune.

The show will feature a wide array of new and used recreational vehicles, as well as about 250 boats.

“This has been a fairly good year for the RV dealers in Southern California that haven’t pulled their horns in all the way,” said Jim Sibert, Southwest sales manager for Affinity Events, which produces shows serving the RV industry. “But 2009 will go down as the deepest part of the recession for us.”

Sibert said RV sales were off about 50% last year.

“There was a lot of left over merchandise that had to be cleared out,” he said. “Basically, RV dealers were caught flat-footed. They just didn’t see the recession coming.”

Sibert said many RV dealers have been forced to offer drastic discounts to move their inventory.

“Last year you saw some units originally priced at $350,000 that were going for $250,000,” he said. “And a $50,000 travel trailer might have sold for $35,000.”

Still, Sibert said people are making use of their RVs.

“The campgrounds and national parks have reported record sales,” he said. “People who had RVs last year were using them. They’re weren’t taking that Hawaii trip, so usage of RVs was up.”

Bob Brown, a spokesman for the Southern California Marine Association, said the boating industry has also taken some heavy hits.

“It’s been a rocky period for the recreational boat industry for the past three – and almost four years,” he said. “Boat prices have come down 25 to 30 percent.”

But shows like the upcoming Boat & RV Summer Super Sale help to generate business. Some consumers will buy on the spot, he said, and others will find the craft they want and make plans to buy it down the road.

“The desire to buy a boat has not declined,” Brown said. “But people find it more difficult to get the financing. Consumer confidence has improved a little in 2010.”

Affinity Events is a division of Affinity Group Inc. (AGI), parent company of

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Rhode Island RVers Look for RV Industry Upturn

March 1, 2010 by · Comments Off on Rhode Island RVers Look for RV Industry Upturn 

People in the recreational vehicle industry are hopeful 2010 has gotten past a long stretch of bad road, according to the Providence Journal.

“We’re looking up instead of down, so it’s promising,” said Phil Ingrassia, spokesman for the Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA).

The RV industry celebrates its 100th anniversary this year, and RV dealers, like the ones who displayed their vehicles at the 17th Annual Rhode Island RV & Camping Show at the Rhode Island Convention Center this past weekend, are hopeful business is set for a turnaround.

Attendance at the RV shows, put on by Affinity Group Inc.’s Affinity Events, the organizer of the Rhode Island show, is up 22-23% so far in 2010, said show manager Andy Tedesco.

And, after two years that saw sales off 50% because of the downturn in the economy, the industry is expecting to grow 25-30% in 2010, according to the RV association. RV shipments from wholesalers to dealers went up 116% in January compared with January 2009 when the industry was in a deep, deep trough.

As he watched workers position six vehicles they brought to the show from Rutland, Mass., north of Worcester, Todd Wozniak of Mann’s RV said he hoped people would put the recent past behind them when it comes to buying an RV.

“It’s not the economy as much as it is everybody talking about the economy,” said Wozniak.

If Wozniak has any luck, some of the 10,000 people expected to visit the Providence show will be looking down the road and picturing themselves rumbling along in one of his RVs.

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Atlantic City RV/Camping Show is March 5-7

February 26, 2010 by · Comments Off on Atlantic City RV/Camping Show is March 5-7 

In 1910, the very first car campers and camping trailers rolled out of America’s factories, giving birth to a uniquely American pastime, RVing. These humble campers are a far cry from the sophisticated modern day RVs that will be on display at the 15th Annual Atlantic City RV & Camping Show, sponsored by GEICO. The event will take place March 5-7 at the Atlantic City Convention Center, according to the Asbury Park Press.

This year’s show will feature leading RV dealers from across the region offering new Class A, B and C motorhomes, toy haulers, park models, tent campers, travel trailers and hybrid travel trailers. The show will also feature RV services and accessories along with information on an array of campgrounds across the region, camping equipment, apparel and accessories.

As an added incentive this year, attendees who purchase an RV at the shows will receive an “RV Getaway Gift Package.” The one-of-a-kind gift package is a special offer from Affinity Events, a division of Affinity Group Inc., to those who purchase an RV at the show.

For more information, visit or call (800) 441-0013.

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January Shows Generating Strong Sales, Traffic

January 19, 2010 by · Comments Off on January Shows Generating Strong Sales, Traffic 

Florida RV SuperShow logoAttendance at the bellwether Florida RV SuperShow in Tampa that ended Sunday (Jan. 17) increased 12% over last year, despite questionable weather on the last day of the show’s five-day run.

”The show was very, very upbeat,” said Lance Wilson, executive director of the sponsoring Florida Recreation Vehicle Trade Association (FRVTA). ”The weather was iffy on Sunday, but the dealers we talked to all said the same thing — that they didn’t hear any negative talk at all. People weren’t complaining about the economy or gas prices. They were just happy to be there.”

Some 50,753 people passed through the gates of the Florida State Fairgrounds Wednesday (Jan. 13) through Sunday.

”We had a nice increase (in sales) from last year,” said Ken Stumpe, Florida Show sales manager for Lazydays RV SuperCenter in nearby Seffner, Fla., ”There was a lot more traffic than last year. It was a totally different atmosphere. A lot of people said they were tired of waiting.”

Camping World RV Sales, which had a dozen displays at the show, sold 179 units, 37 of them Damon and Four Winds motorized RVs, according to President Marcus Lemonis.

Increased attendance at the Florida Show generally mirrored that of other early 2010 shows in Denver, Cleveland, the Washington, D.C., area and Greensboro, N.C.

“Seeing all the aisles full and the dealers not being able to handle all the customers is great,” said Tom Gaither, senior vice president of Affinity Group Inc.’s Affinity Events division.

Gaither reported positive attendance results at three U.s. shows that his organization operates:

  • The 20th Annual Colorado RV Adventure Travel Show Jan. 13-16 in Denver increased 26% compared to 2009.
  • The 21st Annual North Carolina RV & Camping Show Jan. 8-10 in Greensboro was up 1%.
  • The 24th Annual Washington Camping RV Expo in the Washington, D.C., suburb of Chantilly, Va., increased a startling 154%.

”Just the fact that attendance was up tells me that people are looking for RVs and want to go camping,” Gaither said.

Elsewhere, the 34th Annual Ohio Supershow Jan. 6-10, sponsored by the Great Lakes Recreation Vehicle Association, saw a 30% increase in attendance.

”It was one of the best shows in 34 years,” said Great Lakes President Bruce Wolfson. ”It was a great start to the year. People were very upbeat, so the dealers were upbeat because of it.”

Bob Moore, co-owner of Moores’ RV, North Ridgeville, Ohio, said this year’s Ohio Show was the best he’d had in three years.

”The public’s attitude is improving,” Moore said. ”People came in in much better spirits and were much more interested in buying. Their level of creditworthiness and their willingness to put money down was up substantially. That has made us very optimistic about how things are going to go for the summer.”

Not all reports were upbeat, however.

At the Tarrant County RV Show Jan. 7-10 in Fort Worth, Texas, attendance wasn’t quite as strong as last year, said show director Pat Hahn.

Considering below-freezing temperatures for four days before the show and competition from a Dallas Cowboy’s playoff football game, ”I was very pleased with attendance,” she said. ”It was almost as good as last year and last year’s show was terrific.”

Stacy Rist, general manager of Bennett’s Camping Center, a towable dealer in Granbury, Texas, said that while sales at the Fort Worth show weren’t strong, the dealership got a lot of leads.

”There was lots of traffic, but nobody was turning lose of any of their money,” Rist said. ”We might not be over the hump yet. I’m not completely disappointed, but the days of the impulse buyer are gone. You have to work hard for each sale.”

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Affinity Events Announces 17 Spring RV Shows

December 8, 2009 by · 1 Comment 

Affinity logoComing off a successful fall show season, Affinity Group Inc.’s Affinity Events will host 17 consumer RV shows during the 2010 spring show season.

Affinity Events and show exhibitors are combining efforts to bring the latest RV models and camping supplies to outdoor recreation enthusiasts across the country. The upcoming shows will also feature various campgrounds from across the United States, offering RVers a chance to shop and plan an exciting summer vacation, according to a news release.

“Our fall shows helped bring RV dealers and enthusiasts together at a critical time in the RV industry,” said Tom Gaither, senior  vice president of Affinity Events. “It was a win-win show season.

“Our exhibiting dealers moved inventory and buyers capitalized on ‘Screamin’ Deals’ offered at the shows. The Affinity Events fall RV shows drew strong crowds and helped participating dealers sell to first-time buyers as well as long-time RV enthusiasts.”

Gaither points to Affinity’s strong connections to RV enthusiasts through its many clubs, services, media outlets and events as a key differentiator for Affinity shows. “The relationships we maintain with RVers offer us an intimate understanding of the RV industry,” said Gaither. “We are proud to match RV buyers with dealers and we look forward to continued success for our show exhibitors in 2010.”

New next year, attendees who purchase an RV at the shows will receive an “RV Getaway Gift Package,” a one-of-a-kind gift package from Affinity Events. “We want to ensure RVers are ready to hit the road in their new rigs by supplying them with the best information and resources available,” says Jeff Haughton, vice president of Affinity Events.

The package will include: Good Sam Emergency Road Service six-month membership, Good Sam Club one-year membership, Camp Club USA one-year membership, dry camping reservation at The Rally 2010, Golf Card one-year membership, Good Sam Club cookbook, Good Sam Club Road Atlas, Trailer Life Directory, Ultimate Camp Cooking DVD, a one-year subscription to either MotorHome or Trailer Life magazine, Woodall’s One Tank Trip book and Towing/Dinghy Guides.

The spring shows will also include a variety of featured entertainment:

  • The Ultimate Camp Cooking Comedians, sponsored by Good Sam Emergency Road Service, Trailer Life Directory and the Good Sam Club, will be appearing at eight different shows to demonstrate easy, yet affordable gourmet camp cooking recipes. They’ll also keep everyone laughing with their lively antics while they cook. Ultimate Camp Cooking will be featured at the North Carolina RV & Camping Show – Greensboro, Mid-America RV Show, Minneapolis/St. Paul RV, Vacation & Camping Show, Kansas Sports, Boat & Travel Show, Rhode Island RV & Camping Show, Colorado RV, Sports Boat & Travel Show and Pomona RV & Travel Show.
  • John Holod of RV Adventure Video will be at four different shows sharing tips and techniques he has developed over 20 years of RV travel and showing attendees the smartest ways to see the country in an RV. His featured videos will include “Alaska: Highway and Ferry,” “East Coast: Maine to Key West,” “Baja Mexico” and the all-new “Rocky Mountain RV Adventure.” He will appear at the Washington Camping RV Expo, Minneapolis/St. Paul RV, Vacation & Camping Show, Virginia RV Show and Colorado RV, Sports, Boat & Travel Show.
  • Other special features at the Affinity Events spring RV Shows include RV expert Dave Solberg, presenting RV Safety, Turning your RV TV digital and RV Buying seminars; Live Shark Encounter performing live at the Kansas Sports Boat & Travel Show; and Sea Lion Splash performing live at the Mid-America RV & Boat Show.

Visit to find information on the shows in given locales. 

The 2010 Affinity Events RV Show schedule includes shows from Rhode Island to California. Scheduled shows are:

  • Jan. 8-10, 21st Annual North Carolina RV & Camping Show – Greensboro.
  • Jan. 13-16, 20th Annual Colorado RV Adventure Travel Show.
  • Jan. 15-17, 24th Annual Washington Camping RV Expo.
  • Jan. 15-17 and 22-24, 5th Annual Mid-America RV Show.
  • Jan. 22-24, 43rd Annual New Jersey RV and Camping Show.
  • Feb. 11-14, 43rd Annual Minneapolis/St. Paul RV, Vacation & Camping Show.
  • Feb. 12-14, 25th Annual Richmond Camping RV Expo.
  • Feb. 18-21, 56th Annual Kansas Sports, Boat & Travel Show.
  • Feb. 19-21, 20th Annual North Carolina RV & Camping Show – Charlotte.
  • Feb. 19-21, 21st Annual Las Vegas Sportsmen’s RV & Travel Show.
  • Feb. 26-28, 17th Annual Rhode Island RV & Camping Show.
  • Feb. 26-28, 21st Annual North Carolina RV & Camping Show – Raleigh.
  • March 4-7, 53rd Annual Colorado RV, Sports, Boat & Travel Show.
  • March 5-7, 15th Annual Atlantic City RV & Camping Show.
  • March 12-14, 6th Annual Virginia RV Show.
  • April 8-11, 5th Annual Pomona RV & Travel Show.
  • April 9-11, 4th Annual Iowa RV & Travel Show.

Affinity Events is a division of Affinity, parent company of RVBusiness magazine and RVBUSINESS.COM.

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Affinity Events’ Sports Shows See Strong Sales

October 19, 2009 by · Comments Off on Affinity Events’ Sports Shows See Strong Sales 

affinity3The Affinity Events division of Affinity Group Inc. (AGI) has welcomed the winter season with back-to-back successful powersports shows. The 16th Annual Big East Powersports Show, Oct. 2-4 in Syracuse, N.Y., and the 24th Annual Rocky Mountain Snowmobile Expo, Oct. 10-11 in Denver, Colo., both boasted increased attendance and strong sales.

The Big East Powersports Show, sponsored by Camping World and Snow Goer magazine, featured the latest snowmobile and ATV models from Arctic Cat, Polaris, Ski-Doo and Yamaha alongside aftermarket products, open and closed trailers, clothing, accessories and resort information. The excitement surrounding the debut of the 2010 sled models along with attractive prices on gear and accessories led to a 7% increase in attendance from last year’s show.

“Enthusiasm was evident and energy on the show floor was high as attendees shopped the new models and found great deals on everything they need for the coming winter season,” said show manager, Laurie Hallowell. “The exhibitors were thrilled to see such large, enthusiastic crowds and all agreed that the success of the show is a positive sign of things to come in 2010.”

Robin Ingles, owner of Ingles Performance of Phoenix, N.Y., agreed. The company celebrated its 14th year of participation in the show and reported strong sales and increased booth traffic this year. “The show attendees were excited to get back on their sleds,” Ingles said, “and our sales were better than they’ve been in over two years.”

The Rocky Mountain Snowmobile Expo, also sponsored by Camping World and Snow Goer magazine, took place  at the Denver Merchandise Mart and saw the second best attendance in the history of the event. The chilly temps and snow showers on Saturday did not deter the crowds from visiting the Expo to see the newest 2010 snowmobile models and shop the popular Swap Meet Extravaganza. In fact, the line to participate in the Swap Meet formed three hours before the Expo opened.

“The snowfall added to the atmosphere of the show,” said show manager, Dianne Seymour. “The attendees were excited at the thought of another great snowmobiling season and it showed. Our exhibitors sold more than they have in years.”

Tom Gaither, senior VP of Affinity Events, pointed to the close relationship Affinity Events maintains with powersports enthusiasts as the main reason for the continued success of the shows. “Our connection to ATV and Snow Goer magazines gives us an intimate understanding of the powersports world. The enthusiasts who attend the shows are our friends. We know and love the powersports world as much as they do,” he said. “That continued relationship we maintain with the show attendees, combined with the great variety of local exhibitors featuring new products and services continues to generate amazing interest from local powersports enthusiasts.”

 AGI is the owner of RVBusiness and


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RV Show Offers Free Entry to Public Servants on Oct. 16

October 8, 2009 by · Comments Off on RV Show Offers Free Entry to Public Servants on Oct. 16 

The 21st Annual New Jersey Fall RV & Boat Super Sale will take place Oct. 16-18 at the New Jersey Convention & Exposition Center in Edison, N.J.

This year’s sale will feature recreational vehicles, travel trailers and lightweight towables alongside sport boats, pontoons, personal watercraft and more.

More than 20 dealers from around the New York and New Jersey regions will be aggressively pricing new 2009 units, pre-owned units and even some of their new 2010 models, according to a news release.

Friday, Oct. 16 is Public Service Day at the sale. In appreciation for their service, show sponsor Affinity Events will give free admission to all members of the military as well as police officers, firefighters, teachers and all other municipal employees who attend the show that day. This offer is limited to one ticket for each person with a military or municipal ID.

In partnership with The Community FoodBank of New Jersey, all sale attendees who bring a canned or packaged food item will receive $1 off the price of admission. Most-wanted food items include canned meats, fish, chili, fruit, vegetables as well as peanut butter and boxed meals. Glass containers and cellophane should be avoided. All attendees will be able to register to win a new Keystone RV in the Live Your Dreams Sweepstakes, along with a variety of other prizes.

Show hours are Friday 1-8 p.m.; Saturday 11 a.m.-8 p.m.; Sunday 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Tickets are $8 for adults, $7 for seniors (on Friday only), $6 for kids ages 12-17 and free for kids ages 11 and under. Discounted online tickets are available on the show website.

For more information, visit the show website, or call (800) 441-0013.

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RV Dealers Report Good Results at North Carolina Show

September 18, 2009 by · Comments Off on RV Dealers Report Good Results at North Carolina Show 

The 8th Annual North Carolina Fall RV Show & Sale, which took place last weekend at the Greensboro Coliseum, boasted increased attendance and strong sales.

This year’s sale attracted numerous RV enthusiasts optimistic about the economy and ready to purchase their next RV, according to a news release from the sponsor, Affinity Events. The low prices on new 2009 and 2010 RVs along with special tax deductions for qualified buyers brought thousands of attendees to the sale.

“The majority of the dealers participating in the show reported having met their sales goals and they were all very happy with the quality of traffic throughout the show,” said  Anthony Tedesco, show manager. “With all the discouraging news we are seeing about the economy, we were excited to have so many people come to the sale intent on making a purchase. It was great to see the dealers do so well.”

Steve Plemmons, president and CEO of Bill Plemmons RV World, reported strong sales and plenty of great interest from show attendees around one of his newest offering, the KZ RV Sportsmen Classic, a retro-design travel trailer retailing at $4,995.

“Attendees were very excited about the KZ model and its great price. We were even able to sell a few on the spot at the show,” reported Plemmons.

Plemmons wasn’t the only dealer who did well. Alan Good, sales manager with the RV Superstore, also reported strong sales. “We were also able to talk face-to-face with a lot of people, avid RV enthusiasts as well as people who were looking at purchasing their very first RV,” he said. “That is something that we really enjoy about participating in events with Affinity. We always expand our reach and meet lots of new potential customers at the sale.”

According to Jeff Haughton, vice president of Affinity Events, the success of the sale can be credited, in part, to the strong connections Affinity creates with RV enthusiasts through its many clubs, services, media outlets and events. “Affinity is proud to produce sales events that play an important role in the process of getting loyal RV enthusiasts behind the wheel of the RV of their dreams,” Houghton said.

Bill Plemmons RV World also premiered the first ever “green” RV on the market, the Evergreen Ever-Lite. The Ever-Lite is revolutionizing the RV industry through the use of composite materials (rather than traditional wood products) to help eradicate formaldehyde and out gassing to make a healthier, more environmentally sound RV. The model is also much more resistant to water leaks and rotting, which makes for much a higher resale value in the long run, an important feature for many buyers.

RV enthusiasts throughout North Carolina and the surrounding regions will have one more opportunity to take advantage of discounts on a new RV before the summer ends at The Charlotte Fall RV Show & Sale. The event will take place Sept. 25-27 at The Park (formerly Charlotte Merchandise Mart).

For a complete list of exhibitors and additional show information, visit or call (800) 441-0013.

Affinity Events is a subsidiary of Affinity Group Inc., publisher of RVBusiness and RVBUSINESS.COM.

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Georgia Couple Wins Keystone Springdale Trailer

July 1, 2009 by · Comments Off on Georgia Couple Wins Keystone Springdale Trailer 

keystone-springdale-winnersA South Georgia couple, Mackie and Gail Daniels, shown at left, have won a new $26,000 Keystone Springdale travel trailer in the first phase of a unique new retail promotion — Keystone’s Live Your Dreams Sweepstakes — through which Keystone RV Co. Inc. is giving away four towable RVs between June 2009 and February 2010.

As part of this aggressive new program, a joint effort between the Goshen, Ind.-based Thor division and the RV-related websites, e-newsletters, magazines and retail shows of Ventura, Calif.-based Affinity Group Inc., the Danielses’ name was chosen at random in April from more than 50,000 entries in the inaugural round of the Live Your Dreams sweepstakes.

Suffice to say that the Danielses, of Fitzgerald, Ga., appreciated their good fortune.    

“When my wife received the phone call from Keystone informing us that we had won, we were skeptical,” said Mackie Daniels, a retired telecommunications worker. “‘Must be a practical joke,’ I thought. ‘What are the odds?’  But when I returned the call to Keystone and spoke with the people there, I realized this is real. What a surprise! This is the first time I have ever won anything and this is really big!”

The Danielses, who ironically own a 2002 Springdale travel trailer, are avid campers who are planning future camping trips with their grandchildren. “We camp almost every other week,” adds Daniels. “This new model has more space and conveniences than our 2002 and we are sure going to enjoy the additional features.”

Signups are currently under way on Keystone’s website and at point-of-entry displays at Affinity Events shows for Phase #2 of the national giveaway through which the winner of an Outback travel trailer will be announced Aug. 15 at Affinity’s Colorado RV Super Sale. Next up is a Cougar fifth-wheel in October at Affinity’s Atlantic City RV Show. Then comes the finale, a Montana fifth-wheel, the winning name of which will be released in February at Affinity’s St. Paul RV, Vacation and Camping Show.

“Literally tens of thousands of interested consumers have visited the Keystone web site due to the exposure this sweepstakes has generated,” says Ron Fenech, president and CEO of Keystone, the nation’s largest manufacturer of travel trailers and fifth-wheels, with manufacturing facilities in Goshen and Pendleton, Ore. “These visitors learn more about Keystone travel trailers and fifth-wheels and, many times, contact our dealers for further follow up. The Live Your Dreams promotion is a win for the consumer, a win for our dealers and a win for Keystone RV and our employees.”

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Pomona RV Show Partners with Summer Fest

April 22, 2009 by · Comments Off on Pomona RV Show Partners with Summer Fest 

The Pomona RV & Travel show, originally scheduled for April 23-26, will now be held June 19-21, and is partnering with Summer Fest ’09.

In addition to the RV show, visitors will be able to attend the Boat, Home & Backyard and Computer Spectacular all for one price, according to a news release. The show will run Friday, June 19, from 12 noon to 7 p.m.; Saturday, June 20, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; and Sunday, June 21, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Pomona Fairplex in Pomona, Calif.

Comedians with a love for life on the road, Pat Mac and Mike Faverman, will delight attendees with their outdoor cooking tips and easy recipes as they present “Ultimate Camp Cooking” on stage at the Show. They have several years of professional cooking experience and even more years performing to audiences as stand-up comics. They get crowds fired up about the outdoors and especially talking about great food.

Other events at the Fairplex during the weekend will include the 45th Annual LA Roadster Show and Wine and Cars Under the Stars events. (Separate admission is required for these two events.)

Show attendees will be able to register to win one of four Keystone RVs in the “Live Your Dreams Sweepstakes.” Other prizes include “The Rally 2010” dry camping reservation, a one-year Good Sam Emergency Road Service membership, a one-year RV Handyman Club membership, a Woodall’s North American Campground Directory and a one-year Good Sam Club membership.

The Pomona RV & Travel Show is produced by Affinity Events a division of Affinity Group Inc. (AGI). Call (805) 290-2203 for more information or visit

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