The Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory has just released its list of the “Top Extended-Stay RV Parks in North America,” according to a press release.
Compiled by the guide’s editors and consultants, the list is tailored for travelers seeking RV resorts that provide amenities and social activities for vacations stays in some of North America’ most popular regions. To view the entire list click here.
Located across North America, extended-stay RV parks provide guests with all the amenities needed to enjoy a long vacation in one place. While some RV parks put strict limits on how long guests can stay, many parks cater to seasonal visitors, even providing special sections long-term guests.
Snowbird parks commonly embrace long-term guests, as more than 1 million RVers trek to the Sunbelt every year to spend their winters away from the snow. However, parks like Brookhollow RV Park in Kelso, Wash., remain open all year and give guests a chance to enjoy the Pacific Northwest all four seasons.
RV parks that accommodate RVers for long periods give guests a reason to stay. Ocean Lakes RV Resort in Myrtle Beach, S.C., has a church, 12,000-square-foot market, bicycle rentals and a recreational building. The resort’s 12-month activity calendar features events like a family scavenger hunt, entertainment and a New Year’s Eve Party. At Sun Vista RV Resort in Yuma, Ariz., guests can enjoy in-park hair stylists, massage therapists, ballroom dancing classes and regular entertainment. Guests also have access to locked mail boxes and free forwarding services and can get toned at the park’s two-story fitness center.
More information about extended-stay RV parks is available in the 2013 Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory, which combines two of the RV industry’s most popular and respected brands — the Trailer Life Directory and Woodall’s Campground Directory — into one comprehensive volume. The guide contains detailed information more than 8,000 private RV parks across North America; each campground is personally inspected and rated by the Good Sam’s consultant teams.
Camping World Inc. and Good Sam Enterprises LLC today (Oct. 21) announced their 2014 forecast for expansion and future development to meet customer needs for product and service in new markets. According to a press release, the new markets will raise the total number of supercenters to just shy of 120 nationwide. Additionally, the company is under contract with land owners and existing dealerships actively pursuing new markets and acquisitions that will be announced over the next six months.
“Camping World and Good Sam cater to travelers from all over the United States seeking quality outdoor products and services. We are proud to continue our commitment to the U.S. market with the opening of these new supercenters and look forward to having customers in these regions visit their new one-stop location for everything outdoor and RV,” said Marcus Lemonis, chairman and CEO of Camping World. “As part of Camping World and Good Sam’s growth strategy, the brand is making major investments in the quality of its dealer network. From facility upgrades to new store openings, the company’s network will continue to expand and evolve while serving our customers’ outdoor, RV and camping needs.”
Plans are underway to expand the company footprint with additional locations in high-traffic, outdoor-centric markets within the following areas: Pittsburgh, Pa.; Lexington, Ky.; Erie, Pa.; Des Moines, Iowa; Rapid City, S.D.; Minot, N.D.; and San Antonio, Texas.
These new markets are in addition to highly visible locations slated for first quarter 2014 that include:
• January 2014 – Coburg (Junction City area), Ore.
• January 2014 – Fresno, Calif.
• January 2014 - Lake Park, Ga.
• February 2014 - Saukville (Milwaukee area), Wis.
• April 2014 – Rossford (Toledo area), Ohio
This new market expansion is on the heels of new supercenters that have opened and /or had major renovations or relocations in the last year in the following markets:
• October 2012 – Kingston, N.Y. (new location).
• October 2012 – Spokane, Wash. (new location).
• February 2013 – Hanover, Pa. (new location).
• February 2013 – New Port Richey, Fla. (new location).
• May 2013 – Kansas City, Mo. (new location).
• June 2013 – Columbia, Mo. (new location).
• July 2013 – Lubbock, Texas (new location).
• October 2013 – Cedar Falls, Iowa (new location).
• October 2013 – Panama City, Fla. (new location).
• October 2013 – Berkley, Mass. (new location).
• August 2013 – Tampa, Fla. (relocation).
• April 2013 – Jacksonville, Fla. (relocation).
• September 2013 – Ocala, Fla. (relocation).
• September 2013 – Tucson, Ariz. (relocation).
All new locations will offer a wide array of RV sales, service, collision, parts and accessories for the outdoor enthusiast. It will feature motorhomes and towables from the finest manufacturers and brands including Winnebago Industries, Fleetwood, Thor Motor Coach, Itasca, Coleman, Heartland, Keystone, Forest River, Crossroads, Monaco, Holiday Rambler, Jayco, Starcraft, Coachmen and many more.
On the accessory side the new locations will feature new and innovative products including interactive displays and customer experiences from the top vendors such as Dometic, Honda, Thetford, Goodyear, Winegard, ADCO, Camco, Roadmaster, Husky, Reese, Cequent, Exide, Ultra-Fab, Coleman, Valterra, Dicor, Champion, Rand McNally, Max-Air, BAL, Furrion, Select Comfort, ASA Electronics, Cummins, Onan, WFCO, Weber, HWH, Presto-Fit, Stromberg-Carlson, Atwood, RDK Products, Magellan, King Controls, Charbroil, Amerigas, Exxon Mobil products, Norcold and many more. Camping World also carries and creates its own private label lines of exclusive products for the RV, outdoor and home markets.
“This is an exciting announcement not only for those of us who love the outdoors, but also for the community members of these great cities. These recent acquisitions not only increase our presence in existing markets and new territories but are also in alignment with the strategic growth plans we have for the company,” continued Lemonis. “We are constantly reviewing our footprint and evaluating where we can strengthen our position within each of our markets.”
Camping World Inc. and its Good Sam Enterprises LLC affiliate apparently made good on a promise this past weekend (Oct. 17-20) to bring thousands of RV enthusiasts together “to experience world-class evening entertainment, warm southern hospitality and to shop for hundreds of new RVs, outdoor products and camping accessories” by drawing 2,717 consumer coaches to the surrounding lots and infield of the Atlanta Motor Speedway.
All things considered, the Rally, which ended last night with a concert by the Vogues, a 1950’s group well suited for the event’s older demographic, also drew about 500 walk-in attendees a day, Vice President of Media and Events Mark Boggess told RVBUSINESS.com.
He said things actually couldn’t have gone much better, especially considering that the Rally drew about 6,000 people for a Friday night concert by the legendary Beach Boys and another 5,000 for Saturday evening’s performance by C&W entertainer Vince Gill. “It was awesome, and we had a great turnout here,” said Boggess as CW/GS’s staff was preparing to wrap things up last night.
“This was our first time here at the Atlanta Motor Speedway and, you know, all the venues are different, and I’d say probably the best part of this event here was the ability to park rigs. I mean, this place was really easy for consumers to access, and we heard it a lot at registration about how easy it was for people getting in and how they didn’t have to wait in line. So, that was a big thing as far as impressions and people came in happy. That was a good thing.”
While consumers, with the exception of the handicapped, were parked outside the speedway facility, all of the supplier and OEM displays were located in the infield, with Camping World alone showing 160 units while the number of commercial rigs on hand in the outdoor displays totaled around 300. Activities during the included about 20 seminars a day plus a veterans’ salute, Huey helicopter rides, dog Frisbee performers plus presentations by Food Network’s “Surreal Gourmet” Bob Blumer and tours of Antebellum homes, the CNN Center and the “World of Coca-Cola.”
From a commercial standpoint, Boggess says the exhibitors at the Rally were pleased with the pace of business.
“We filled two NASCAR garages and a Camping World tent at least 80 feet long with Camping World and Good Sam product,” Boggess reported. “We had over 300 indoor exhibitors sold. We even spilled over into the outside areas. People wanted to be at this Rally, so it was a huge success, and all the manufacturers did very well – Jayco particularly in the towables, as well as Keystone and Heartland.”
He added, “As for motorized, we heard nothing but great comments from Winnebago, Thor, Fleetwood and Newmar. They were all in the infield. So it made it very convenient for the handicapped people in particular to get to their exhibits. Then we shuttled people by tram and bus from all the parking around the Atlanta Motor Speedway venue through the tunnel, and that went very smoothly, too.”
Camping World Inc. and Good Sam Enterprises LLC announced their forecast for expansion and future development to “meet customer needs for product and service in new markets,” according to a press release.
The new markets will raise the total number of supercenters, just shy of 115 nationwide. Additionally, the company is in discussions with land owners and existing dealerships actively pursuing new markets and acquisitions that will be announced over the next six months.
Plans are under way to expand the company footprint with additional locations in high traffic, outdoor-centric markets within the following timeframe and markets:
• August 2013: Panama City, Fla.
• September 2013: Ocala, Fla., relocation; Tucson, Ariz., relocation; Cedar Falls, Iowa.
• November 2013: Berkeley (Boston area), Mass.
• January 2014: Coburg (Junction City area), Ore.; Fresno, Calif.; Harrisburg, Pa., retail store expansion; Lake Park, Ga.; February 2014 – Saukville (Milwaukee area), Wis.; Olive Branch (Memphis area), Miss.
• April 2014: Rossford (Toledo area), Ohio; Rapid City, S.D.; Pittsburgh, Pa.; Jackson, Miss.
“We are proud to continue our commitment to the U.S. market with the opening of these new supercenters and look forward to having customers in these regions visit their new one-stop location for everything outdoor and RV,” said Marcus Lemonis, chairman and CEO of Camping World. “As part of Camping World and Good Sam’s growth strategy, the brand is making major investments in the quality of its dealer network. From facility upgrades to new store openings, the company’s network will continue to expand and evolve while serving our customers’ outdoor, RV and camping needs.”
He continued, “These recent acquisitions increase our presence in existing markets and new territories and are in alignment with the strategic growth plans we have for the company. We are constantly reviewing our footprint and evaluating where we can strengthen our position within each of our markets.”
Camping World Inc. and Good Sam Enterprises Inc. announced the signing of an agreement to acquire Ace Fogdall RV, an existing RV dealership in Cedar Falls, Iowa, in the next 30 to 45 days.
According to a press release, plans are for the location to undergo a massive expansion to renovate into a larger facility including additional service bays, a new Camping World retail store and a state of the art collision center. Camping World currently has nearby Midwest area supercenters in Madison, Wis., Chicago, Council Bluffs, Iowa, and three locations in Missouri.
“We are pleased to begin the acquisition of Ace Fogdall RV and expand our market share throughout Iowa and the greater Midwest area,” said Marcus Lemonis, chairman and CEO of Camping World and Good Sam. “For over 50 years, the Fogdall family has proudly served the Cedar Falls area with top-notch service and the best products. Jim Fogdall is a pioneer in the RV industry and has been chairman of the board of the Recreational Vehicle Dealers Association and inducted into the RV/MH Hall of Fame. The Fogdall family’s achievements speak volumes of the legacy they have made in the community that we are proud to continue.”
The supercenter, officially named Camping World of Cedar Falls, is the second full-service location in Iowa and will offer a wide array of RV sales, service, collision, parts and accessories for the outdoor enthusiast. It will also feature motorhomes and towables from high profile manufacturers along with an array of products and accessories. Camping World also carries and creates its own private label lines of exclusive products for the RV, outdoor and home markets.
Lemonis continued, “We expect the Midwest market to allow us to broaden our customer reach, build upon our market leadership position in recreational vehicle sales, and make Camping World the leading retailer in the growing outdoor market.”
The new store in the Cedar Falls market will add to Camping World’s future growth plans and the company expects to soon announce several additional markets of expansion throughout the country. Camping World of Cedar Falls will also be adding additional positions for seasoned and professional RV sales associates, technicians, and retail support as the facility expands and is pleased to have the current employees at the Fogdall RV location join the Camping World staff.
Millions of families across North America are hitting the road in a recreational vehicle and leaving airlines and hotels in the dust. According to a press release, the Recreational Vehicle Industry (RVIA) recently reported that the number of RV-owning households in the United States has risen to a record 9 million, and roughly 40% of these have kids that are 18 years old or younger.
To help RVers find the parks best-suited for family play and relaxation, Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory has compiled a list of the top family RV Parks for 2013. Boasting campgrounds from Alberta, Canada, to the Emerald Coast of Florida, this list of 52 RV parks is tailored for RV travelers seeking campgrounds that help them get away from the stresses of everyday life.
Each park on the list boasts unique qualities that make it a special vacation destination. At Normandy Farms Family Campground in Foxboro, Massachusetts, families can participate in an Easter egg hunt, a Mother’s Day weekend and Fourth of July celebration. In Warrens, Wisconsin, the staff organizes themed activity weeks, such as Wild West Week and Yogi’s Birthday Week. Some RV parks create a whimsical environment.
To view the list click here.
Hundreds of couples lined up early at the New York State Fairgrounds last week to get hitched, again.
The Post-Standard, Syracuse, reported that the people who crowded into Chevy Court with the goal of setting a new world record for largest wedding vow renewal were camped out at the fairgrounds for the Camping World/Good Sam Rally, which bills itself as the biggest and best RV event in North America.
As couples filed through turnstiles and volunteers collected signatures from each couple renewing their vows, video cameras on stage recorded every moment of the event.
The cameras, turnstiles and signatures were necessary for Guinness World Records, Mark Boggess, an event organizer said. The current record for most couples renewing their vows at once is 1,087, he said.
While it won’t be known for some time if a new record was set, that fact hardly seemed to weigh on the minds of the thousands of people drove and towed nearly 3,000 RVs and campers to the fairgrounds for the four-day event.
“It’s just about having fun,” Boggess said. “They came here to have a good time.”
RVs and campers of all shapes and sizes packed into every corner of the fairgrounds, ranging from small popups and tow-behind campers, to travel trailers and monster RVs.
Punishing rainfall over the last few weeks made several RV parking areas into little more than ponds, forcing organizers to send about 400 RVs to a parking lot nearby at Destiny USA.
“But it hasn’t stopped people from having a good time,” Boggess said.
The weather didn’t stop salesmen from hawking their wares: RVs, campers and accessories.
Accessories for RVs and campers run the gamut from practical to novel. Lawn furniture, satellite dishes, and fireplaces are options, as are flagpoles, on-board generators and built-in exterior grills.
To read the entire article click here.
After a soggy start to the largest RV rally in the Northeast, things are finally starting to clear up for the RV enthusiasts split between the New York State Fairgrounds and the parking lots of Destiny USA.
WSYR TV reported that “The Rally,” hosted by Camping World/Good Sam Rally, brings together thousands of RV owners, opened earlier this week to heavy rain, forcing rally organizers to turn RV drivers away from the Fairgrounds and detour them to the parking lots at Destiny.
Within a matter of hours, the mall and rally organizers coordinated to provide shuttles, port-a-potties and trash pick-up for the hundreds rerouted to Destiny.
Jim McParland and Robyn Currie, who traveled all the way from Ontario, Canada are impressed with the way organizers and mall officials handled the situation.
“They’ve made a great situation from what could have been a disaster,” McParland said. “I think the fact that they’ve adopted or adapted so well to the conditions speaks volumes of Syracuse and for the person that runs that mall coordinating with the rally people.”
“It’s been fine – slightly inconvenient not to be over there [at the Fairgrounds] but it’s been safe here and there are a lot of people to talk to,” Currie added.
Destiny USA called in extra security to help secure the entire perimeter surrounding the RV’s.
“We have the guard towers we put in place as the parking lot project a few years ago. Whatever they need, we’ll do it,” said Destiny USA General Manager Rob Schoeneck.
The weekend will go as planned with an RV show and concerts featuring Wayne Newton Friday night and Reba McEntire Saturday evening.
For rally attendees such as Barb Heibein, some bad weather isn’t going to spoil their fun.
“We come for a good time and this is a good place to have it,” said Heibein.
People all over Syracuse are celebrating because the rally is expected to bring in millions of dollars as vendors and event attendees visit restaurants, stores, and stay in area hotels.
Good Sam Enterprises LLC announced today (April 30) that it has purchased the RV.com domain name from Dometic Group, according to a press release.
RV.com, one of the most recognizable URL’s in the industry, will be used by Good Sam to make it easier for RV and outdoor lifestyle consumers to learn about everything RV – from how to select and buy an RV that suits their lifestyle, to researching and reserving a campsite to interacting with fellow RVers.
“The term “RV” defines not just a type of vehicle, it defines a lifestyle,” said Good Sam Chairman and CEO Marcus Lemonis. “We strive to be the one-stop shop for everything in the RV lifestyle and integrating www.RV.com into our suite of web-based services for RVers further solidifies our position as the leader in this industry.”
Launching in August 2013, Lemonis said the new RV.com will be content-rich and feature tools and services that the Good Sam Club member base and today’s RVers find most useful, including access to new and used RVs for sale, how-to videos and content offering demonstrations of RV maintenance and use, as well as integrated social media tools enabling RVers to communicate with each other. RV.com will also serve as a centralized RV trip planning service, with extensive content regarding RV travel destinations and events, RV related gear reviews and RV park and campground descriptions and ratings.
With 20,000 websites linking to RV.com today, the reach of the new RV.com will be significant from its launch and is expected to grow exponentially as new services and additional content is added.
“It has been a pleasure to partner with the Dometic team in our efforts to increase ease of access to the RV lifestyle,” said John A. Sirpilla, chief business development officer of Good Sam. “We are always looking for new partners and opportunities that help to increase the enjoyment of all RVers, and that help welcome new RVers into the fold.”
“Dometic’s primary focus within the RV business community is to continue to expand and service our extensive dealer, OEM and value-added reseller network. We view strategic, long-term relationships like the one we’ve formed with Good Sam as an extension of our global network,” said Frank Marciano, president Dometic Americas. “We’re pleased Good Sam will be able to better serve the industry with the RV.com web domain and that Dometic will benefit from the added brand exposure and web traffic through this valuable channel.”
Good Sam Enterprises LLC announced that it will be launching a new web-based trip planning service this summer, according to a press release. The Good Sam Trip Planner, which will be available exclusively to Good Sam Club members, will be a comprehensive road trip planning tool featuring both routing and information about thousands of RV parks and campgrounds as well as points of interest across the U.S.
The Good Sam Trip Planner will be the second product to be released as part of the recently announced Good Sam-Rand McNally partnership and follows the release of the Good Sam GPS. With the new Trip Planner, Good Sam Club members will be able to create point-to-point directions, research and plot thousands of points of interest across the U.S., and create custom road trips, either across town or across the country.
“Good Sam is dedicated to helping our members make the most of their travel, whether in their RV or car,” said Marcus Lemonis, chairman and CEO of Good Sam. “The new Good Sam Trip Planner acts as a personal travel assistant, helping people map routes to their destination, find new places to visit and camp and to find interesting things to do and see along the way.”
Users will be able to map their routes from start to finish while searching for and adding points of interest along the way. Camping World Super Centers and Pilot Flying J locations are integrated into the Good Sam Trip Planner, making it a comprehensive road trip planning solution. To assist users with making the most of their time on the road, the Trip Planner will also include pre-planned scenic routes and recommended points of interests based on content from Rand McNally’s Best of the Road program.
The planner divides road trips into manageable days, based on desired daily travel distances, quickly allowing the user to add stops from either the Trip Planner database or their own experience. It also provides users with the ability utilize printable directions and share information with family and friends on social media sites such as Facebook.
Additionally, the Good Sam Trip Planner will seamlessly integrate with the Good Sam GPS, enabling users to create custom road trip itineraries and download them directly to their Good Sam GPS.