For the second straight year, real estate firm Northland Corp. will be leasing sites to manufacturers for the Elkhart County RV Open House in northern Indiana, having locked in several confirmations immediately following the close of last year’s event.
“It was the first time that we offered locations and we weren’t sure what kind of reception we would get,” said Rob Letherman, vice president for Elkhart-based Northland. “After the show, four manufacturers wanted space for 2013.”
EverGreen Recreational Vehicles LLC, Cruiser RV/DRV Luxury Suites, Augusta RV and Livin’ Lite Recreational Vehicles LLC all reserved sites along “the gauntlet” on Executive Parkway (see map) – the primary feeder leading to Thor Industries Inc.’s massive display area at the RV/MH Hall of Fame.
Letherman reported that startup Grand Design RV is also on board, reserving an approximately 15-acre lot sandwiched between the east side of Executive Parkway and County Road 6.
“Grand Design’s space is by far the largest,” Letherman said. “EverGreen also has a nice size lot on the corner of Executive Parkway and County Road 17. Both EverGreen and Cruiser/DRV just absorbed another lot from what they rented last year.”
Initiated by Forest River Inc. in 2009, the Open House attracted approximately 4,000 dealer representatives to the area in 2012. This year’s edition, officially running Sept. 17-19, promises to be even larger as the event has matured into a mainstay on the RV trade show circuit.
“The Open House has evolved into a huge event,” Letherman said. “It’s good for the community and especially good for the manufacturers in our area.”
Last year, Northland’s site offerings were centered along CR 6, a major east-west artery on the north side of Elkhart running between the focal points for the Open House – Thor’s Hall of Fame display and Forest River’s exhibit area on the grounds of its Dynamax subsidiary.
“We decided not to push the CR 6 spots this year because it was apparent that OEMs wanted to be on or near Executive Parkway,” Letherman said, adding that lots were still available.
He said that Northland just rents “vacant land” to manufacturers. “They’re allowed to bring in tents, generators and even mulch if they want,” he said. “We get the site prepped a week in advance and they generally start bringing in units the Friday before the show.”
For additional information contact Letherman at email@example.com.
Topeka, Ind.-based towable builder Starcraft RV Inc. will host an open house September 18-20 as part of the 5th Annual Elkhart County RV Open House Week. According to a press release, Starcraft will be displaying product from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 2702 Ada Dr. in Elkhart, just off of County Road 6.
During the week, Starcraft will showcase 35 towable models from its 2013 towable lineup, 18 of which are new or redesigned. On display will be the new AR-ONE WideBody series, an addition to the popular AR-ONE, a lightweight, family-friendly unit. Also, the Travel Star EXP will feature two new floorplans, one with a slideout and another featuring a king-sized bed.
“With our display being one-third larger than last year we are very excited for the open house.” said Starcraft National Sales Manager Brent Froman. “We have several new price points being featured, so we have some big expectations for this year’s open house.”
Starcraft, a division of Jayco Inc., will use the open house as a platform to introduce many “exciting changes and brand new additions” to its camping trailer offerings, including a new Comet RT Off-Road series and new floorplans that will appeal to a broader camping trailer market.
Starcraft’s regional sales managers will be on-site during the open house hours Tuesday through Thursday to talk with dealers. “We enjoy the open house because it lets us reconnect with our current dealers, connect with new ones and show everything Starcraft has to offer for 2013.” commented Froman.
In addition to the units, Starcraft will also provide lunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday for visitors.