RV park owners in Kansas have faced many hurdles during this camping season.
“Road construction, floods, drought and of course the unrelenting heat have added burdens to Kansas RV parks and have caused some RVers to adjust or even cancel their summer vacation plans, but the mid-summer reports from many of our park owners look mighty fine, all things considered,” Mary Arlington, president of the Kansas Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (KARVC), stated in a news release.
Park owners had the following comments:
Capital City KOA (Topeka) reports overnight traffic is up 20%. This June was their best month ever. Charlie Reaser, owner, said he is also seeing good results from local advertising. He said, “In the last year we have added cable TV and finished our floors in the bath house and barn. The addition of cable TV has been well worth it. I believe it is now the second most sought-after amenity, next to Wi-Fi.”
Brenda Harris, owner of Rutlader Outpost (Louisburg), reports a busy summer, and 2011 will be one of their best years. They opened in 2001. This year they’re seeing a considerable increase in the monthly and weekly stays. She also reported that, although RV club rallies are down, there are a few huge rallies scheduled for the fall.
Greg Wright, a partner with Walnut Grove RV Park (Merriam), says, “The year has just been great” with occupancy being up every month of the year.
Some campgrounds reported slightly lower occupancy over last year, but not as much as was feared when media reports were projecting fuel prices to be $5/gallon.
Speaking for KARVC, Arlington added, “Not all parks are so fortunate. A few of our members are truly uneasy about the season, but they haven’t yet given up on 2011. I remain hopeful they’ll see a turn-around very soon. For example, Kansas City Jellystone Park is still recovering from last year’s change in name and management, and the interstate road construction hasn’t helped their situation. The park’s team is working hard to catch up, and with the array of special events they have scheduled for July and August, including an open-house and barbecue, I’m remaining very hopeful about their turn-around.”
Reaser summed it up best when he said, “I hope the trend (he’s seeing at Capital City KOA) continues well into the fall season because, like a lot of other parks, the last three years have been difficult.”