The last issue of the quarterly PopUp Times magazine under Publisher Dave Newhouse goes to the printer Thursday (June 18).
Newhouse has sold the niche magazine and the PopUp Times website (popuptimes.com) to Dean Babb, who operates the PopUp Explorer Internet website (popupexplorer.com).
”I love it, but after about 11 years publishing PopUp Times, I just got to the point that I couldn’t do it anymore,” Newhouse told RVBUSINESS.com. ”There’s just so much that you can say about popups. It’s been a labor of love rather than a money maker.”
The magazine, founded in 1998 featuring product reviews, new equipment announcements, camping advice, technical tips and fireside recipes and currently has circulation in the mid- to high-teens, Newhouse said.
”I wanted someone to take the magazine who could give it a new look and pump some life in it,” he said.
For his part, Babb, a freelance designer based in The Dalles, Ore., said he doesn’t plan any major changes to the magazine.
”We are going to keep the focus on popup campers and smaller RVs,” he said. ”The biggest change is that it will have a new look — a new masthead and design.”
Babb also will continue to operate both Internet websites, describing Pop Up Explorer with 16,000 registered members that he founded in 2002 as ”primarily a message forum.”
”This will be my first foray into being an actual publisher,” Babb said.
Newhouse said he will continue to sell ads for PopUp Times, and is exploring the idea of starting a new regional magazine with PopUp Times editor Terry Hanley that would focus on outdoor life in the mid-Atlantic states.
”We’re hoping to have an issue out by the first of the year,” said Newhouse, who published PopUp Times from the Washington, D.C., suburb of Vienna, Va. ”We’ll includes some RVs in it, but it will be more outdoor-oriented.”
He also will continue to publish the annual directory for the Virginia Campground Association.
Although folding camping trailer sales have been in decline, Newhouse added the RV industry’s current malaise wasn’t soley responsible for his departure.
”It might have had a little bit to do with it, but that wasn’t the main reason,” he said. But it apparently played a significant role.
”When I started the magazine in 1998, they were selling 63,000 Popups a year,” Newhouse said, noting that a recent estimate by economist Richard Curtin of the University of Michigan is that the RV industry will retail only 10,900 folding camping trailers this year.