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.
Camping World Inc. and Good Sam Enterprises LLC announced the signing of an agreement to acquire Holiday on Wheels, an existing RV dealership in Panama City, Fla., in the next 90 to 120 days with an official grand opening a few months later.
According to a news release, plans are for the location to undergo expansion to renovate into larger facility including additional service bays, a new Camping World retail store and a state-of-the-art collision center.
“We are pleased to begin the acquisition of Holiday on Wheels and expand our market share throughout Florida,” said Marcus Lemonis, chairman and CEO of Camping World and Good Sam. “We are no stranger to the state of Florida and with all the activities Panama City offers — shopping, boating, hiking, fishing, state parks, and so much more, bringing a full-service RV supercenter to better serve the RV industry makes sense and completes our presence in the Panhandle.”
The new location will be officially named Camping World of Panama City and represents the third Camping World RV supercenter in the Panhandle, with nearby locations in Tallahassee and Gulf Breeze.
“We expect the Panama City market along with its close proximity to the major tourist areas of Destin and Fort Walton to allow us to broaden our customer reach, build upon our market leadership position in recreational sales, and make Camping World the leading retailer in the growing outdoor market,” continued Lemonis.
The new outlet will add to Camping World’s future growth plans and the company expects to soon announce several additional markets of expansion throughout the country. The company will also be adding new positions for seasoned and professional RV sales associates, technicians and retail support to join current employees at the Holiday on Wheels location as the facility expands.
Camping World Inc. and Good Sam Enterprises LLC announced the signing of an agreement to acquire American RV, an existing RV dealership in Olive Branch, Miss., in the next 60 to 90 days.
According to a news release, plans are for the location to undergo expansion to renovate into larger facility including additional service bays, a new Camping World retail store and a state-of-the-art collision center. The company has nearby RV supercenters in the Little Rock, Nashville and Calera markets and a total of seven stores in the greater regional area. American RV is owned by Peter Albano, who previously served as Convention/Expo Chairman for the Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA).
“We are pleased to begin the acquisition of American RV and expand our market share throughout Mississippi as well as nearby Alabama, Arkansas and Tennessee,” said Marcus Lemonis, chairman and CEO of Camping World and Good Sam. “We expect the greater Memphis market to allow us to broaden our customer reach, build upon our market leadership position in recreational sales, and make Camping World the leading retailer in the growing outdoor market.”
Lemonis continued, “Our goal is to add more quality manufacturers and brands, increase our presence in the market, and grow the work force. The greater Memphis area is perfect for outdoor enthusiasts to fish, hike, camp, and swim and just enjoy life. We are excited to begin serving this market. “
The new location, officially named Camping World of Memphis, is the first full-service location in Mississippi for the company. However, Camping World, Lemonis and his family have long-standing ties to the nearby Memphis area with its continuous support of the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, which provides pioneering work in finding cures and saving children with cancer and other catastrophic diseases.
The new outlet will add to Camping World’s future growth plans and the company expects to soon announce several additional markets of expansion throughout the country. The company will also be adding new positions for seasoned and professional RV sales associates, technicians and retail support to join current employees at the American RV location as the facility expands.
Lincolnshire, Ill.-based Camping World RV Sales today (March 20) reported 2012 revenue on rolling stock sales of $1.48 billion, a 28.8% increase over 2011.
According to a news release, income from operations for the year totaled $67.4 million, an increase of 74% over 2011 results.
The company noted that the results do not include revenue or income from operations of the company’s affiliate Good Sam Enterprises LLC.
An employee of Camping World Inc. and Good Sam Enterprises LLC was declared the winner on “the Biggest Loser: Challenge America,” the NBC reality weight-loss competition currently in its 14th season. According to a press release, Danni Allen, a 26-year-old advertising coordinator from Wheeling, Ill., lost 121 pounds while competing on the show.
“From Day 1, I did not know this was in me,” she said. “I was a scared, self-conscious person. I did not know I could be here. I did not know I could get past the first workout. I didn’t know that my dreams were possible and I finally feel like my dreams come true… I feel amazing.”
When she started on the show, Allen weighed 258 pounds. She finished at 137 pounds and lost 46.9% of her starting body weight by eating healthy and plenty of daily exercise.
Besides taking the “Biggest Loser” crown, Allen took home the $250,000 cash prize.
“As a company we are pleased to share in Danni’s achievements in reaching her health and fitness goals,” said Marcus Lemonis, chairman and CEO of Camping World and Good Sam. “She is a shining example of corporate wellness and the entire company and the RV industry was rooting for her from the beginning.”
Camping World Inc. and Good Sam Enterprises LLC today (March 14) announced the signing of an agreement to acquire Camper Coaches, an existing RV dealership in Lubbock, Texas, in the next 30 to 60 days. According to a press release, plans are for the location to undergo 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.
“We are pleased to begin the acquisition of Camper Coaches and expand our market share throughout Texas as well as nearby New Mexico and Oklahoma,” said Marcus Lemonis, chairman and CEO of Camping World and Good Sam. “We expect the Lubbock market to allow us to broaden our customer reach, build upon our market leadership position in recreational sales, and make Camping World the leading retailer in the growing outdoor market.”
He added, “I always look for three things – people, process and product – in relation to enhancing our Camping World and Good Sam presence. Our goal is to add more quality manufacturers and brands, increase our presence in the market, and grow the work force.”
Camping World of Lubbock, with easy access off Interstate 27, will offer a wide array of RV sales, service, collision, parts and accessories for the outdoor enthusiast. It represents the fourth full-service location in Texas for Camping World along with outlets in the San Antonio, El Paso and Houston markets as well as two stand-alone retail stores in the state.
Lemonis said the new supercenter will add to Camping World’s future growth plans and the company expects to soon announce several additional markets of expansion in the state of Texas. Camping World of Lubbock will also be creating additional positions for seasoned and professional RV sales associates, technicians and retail support as the facility expands, joining the current employees at the Camper Coaches location.