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.
Camping World Inc. (CWI) and Good Sam Enterprises LLC today (March 8) announced plans to open a new supercenter in the Valdosta, Ga., market in November.
According to a press release, Camping World of Valdosta will feature the first co-located, co-branded 150-site campground and rally park for the company. In addition, the store will offer a wide array of RV sales, service, collision, parts and accessories for the outdoor enthusiast.
The new supercenter will join almost 100 other locations across the U.S., including four Georgia stores in the Atlanta, Macon and Savannah markets. Camping World of Valdosta will be located off I-75, exit 5, in Lake Park.
“We are excited to bring the Camping World one-stop shopping experience to Valdosta with our full-service RV lifestyle center that includes our proto-type Good Sam licensed RV campground,” said Marcus Lemonis, chairman and CEO of Camping World and Good Sam. “City leaders and landowners have embraced our recent acquisition because it puts money directly back into the local economy, brings jobs and helps to build revenue for businesses. Everyone wants to see success in their community.”
The co-located Good Sam park will take affordable family camping to a new level in the greater Valdosta area, according to Camping World. Visitors to the campground portion of the property will choose from 150 full-service campsites, including park models, as well as swimming pools, meeting rooms, pet playgrounds and other standard amenities with special rates for Good Sam Club members.
“We feel especially fortunate to be able to create a multi-business module that serves our southern Georgia and northern Florida communities with a wide choice of products and offering convenience off of I-75, while creating job opportunities,” said Roger Nuttall, president of Camping World Retail Group. “We look forward to serving the local community with high value products with the convenience and service fitting the greater Valdosta community’s recreational lifestyle.”
Camping World is the nation’s largest RV and outdoor retailer while Good Sam represents the world’s largest RV owners organization with more than 2,000 local RV chapters designed to bring RVers together from similar geographic regions for group camping excursions. Camping World is also the title sponsor of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series in addition to the Official RV and Outdoor Retailer of NASCAR.
Camping World Inc. and Good Sam Enterprises LLC announced the relocation of the Camping World of Ocala dealership to a new 85,000-square-foot facility in Summerfield, Fla. According to a press release, the new facility is just south of its existing location and will feature one of the largest indoor showrooms on the eastern seaboard.
“We initially acquired our Ocala location in November 2011 as part of a multi-store chain acquisition. We have realized great success, however, have not been able to execute our companies’ full offering,” said Marcus Lemonis, chairman and CEO of Camping World and Good Sam. “We knew that by binding both the retail and dealership locations in our network, we would get closer to achieving our goal of truly being the one-stop shopping location for the RV and outdoor enthusiast across the country.”
Camping World expects to open the new SuperCenter in Summerfield in June 2013, which is a short drive from The Villages, a retirement community with over 75,000 residents. The Villages offers 33 golf courses, eight country clubs, a wide variety of family and adult recreational areas as well as activities like archery, painting, pickleball, quilting, scrapbooking, synchronized swimming, tae chi and yoga. In 2012, Forbes magazine ranked The Villages as Florida’s fastest growing small town. Lemonis commented, “This close proximity to the Villages is a match made in heaven.”
Ocala is also known as one of the largest equestrian communities in the country. Camping World’s existing partnership with the annual Winter Equestrian Festival in Florida, coupled with this new SuperCenter located in one of the nation’s most treasured equestrian locations, further solidifies Camping World’s position as the leader in serving the horse-loving communities.
As the expansion begins, Camping World/Good Sam will add additional positions for seasoned and professional RV sales associates, technicians and retail support to assist at this new location to aid its existing employee base. Camping World’s goal is to add more quality manufacturers and brands, increase their presence in the market, and grow the workforce.
Camping World of Ocala will feature motorhomes and towables from the finest manufacturers and brands including Winnebago Industries, Fleetwood, Thor Motor Coach, Itasca, Coleman, Heartland, Keystone, Forest River, Cross Roads, Monaco, Holiday Rambler, Jayco, Starcraft, Coachmen and many more.
On the accessory side the new location 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, 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 their own private label lines of exclusive products for the RV, outdoor and home markets.
“After a thorough search in this part of Florida, which included Ocala, Gainesville, Leesburg, and Inverness we landed on Summerfield because we felt this location best served all of the aforementioned communities,” said Johnny Sirpilla, Chief Business Development Officer for Camping World and Good Sam. “Camping World has a strong history of customer service and we look forward to serving the Greater Ocala area in the near future.”
Camping World is the nation’s largest RV and outdoor retailer while Good Sam represents the world’s largest RV owners organization.