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CalARVC Site Features GuestRated Review Functions

August 26, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

calarvc-logoThe California Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (CalARVC) has added the GuestRated review function to Camp-California.com, which gives consumers the ability to rate their camping experience, according to a news release.

“Consumers can now rate private campgrounds and RV parks throughout California using a survey tool that coverts their responses to letter grades,” said Debbie Sipe, executive director of the Auburn-based CalARVC, which manages Camp-California.com.

Private parks can be rated on their service quality, property condition, campsites and restrooms. “Overall grades are assigned to each park that has been surveyed,” Sipe said, adding that the number of surveys completed for each park is also displayed.

Sipe said the rating system, developed by Murrieta, Calif.-based GuestRated.com, was added to Camp-California.com this summer in response to consumer demand for an independent rating system for private parks throughout the Golden State.

“The letter grade system is a powerful marketing tool for parks with high scores since Camp-California also offers consumers the ability to sort parks by their ratings,” Sipe said. “Of course, it also provides an incentive for parks with lower grades to address areas of consumer concern if they want to remain competitive with their peers in the industry.”

Consumers can review campgrounds and RV parks they have visited by clicking on the “reviews” tab, which appears at the top of the screen after they click to see detailed information about the private park of interest to them. The rating form provided by GuestRated.com will then appear on the screen.

Sipe said more than 3,200 surveys have been completed for roughly half of the campgrounds and RV parks listed on Camp-California.com and those numbers will increase significantly as word spreads about the new ratings function.

The ratings capability was one of several upgrades made to Camp-California.com this summer by Orange, Calif.-based Friend Communications Inc., which manages and hosts for CalARVC.

Other improvements include the creation of subdomains on the site, which make it possible for consumers to bookmark park listings for future reference. The computer coding in URLs throughout the site has also been replaced with recognizable keywords to make it easier for consumers to find parks listed on Camp-California.com when they conduct Google searches or searches with other Internet search engines.

Parks listed on Camp-California.com can also be sorted by location and by the amenities or recreational activities they provide. They can also be listed alphabetically or by their ratings.

“We are continually fine tuning Camp-California.com to make it more user friendly and to give consumers the information they need as quickly as possible,” Sipe said.

For additional commentary, statistics and sources on the latest camping trends in campgrounds, RV parks and resorts in California or for leads on parks in your news coverage area, contact  Sipe at (530) 885-1624 or (530) 906-4592 (cell).

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Western Campground Conference Set for April 19-21

August 12, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

09convlogoRev Up in Reno, an event that brought together some 200 campgrounds owners and operators from several western states in the spring, will  return April 19-21, 2010, at John Ascuaga’s Nugget hotel and casino in Reno, Nev.

The California Associaiton of RV Parks and Campgrounds (CalARVC) was the lead organizer for the first-time effort and announced the dates this week.

“The hotel is great and the energy among 200 delegates from across the Western States is an atmosphere not to be missed,” CalARVC stated in its current Coffee Talk & Updates e-newsletter. 

More details will follow.

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CalARVC Urges Formaldehyde-free Chemicals

April 16, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

calarvc-logo1The California Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (CalARVC) is taking a bold pro-environmental stand with regard to formaldehyde in holding tank treatments  by asking three of the nation’s leading distributors of aftermarket parts and accessories, Camping World Inc., Lincolnshire, Ill., Coast Distribution System Inc., Morgan Hill, Calif., and Stag Parkway Inc.,  Atlanta, Ga., to halt shipments of chemicals containing the controversial chemical into the Golden State.

In letters to the CEOs of the three firms, Debbie Sipe, CalARVC executive  director, wrote, “Several studies have concluded that RV holding tank products that contain formaldehyde are harmful to consumers, while posing a significant threat to groundwater quality. Campground operators have also learned that while chemically based holding tank products effectively control sewage odors, they also destroy the bacteria that’s needed to break down the wastes contained in septic systems. Septic tank failures ultimately occur, costing campground operators tens of thousands of dollars in septic system repairs.”

She noted that the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) posted a fact sheet in January alerting consumers to these risks, while encouraging them to purchase holding tank products that do not contain formaldehyde.

Given these environmental hazards, she continued, CalARVC asked the three firms to refrain from selling these products in California and instead market environmentally friendly holding tank products, as recommended by the DTSC.

Sipe urged the companies to educate their customers about the dangers of using chemically based holding tank products.

“We think (the three firms) could make a positive statement on this issue by announcing its decision to ban these products on or before April 22, when our nation celebrates Earth Day,” she said. “We look forward to receiving your thoughts on this matter at your earliest opportunity.”

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