New Features Drew Shoppers to Illinois Show

March 28, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Springfield, Ill., residents Robert and Marlene Dawe were at the Springfield RV and Camper Show Friday (March 25) checking out some of the features on the new campers.

“We saw one that had an outdoor kitchen in it. We liked that,” Robert Dawe told the Springfield State Journal-Register.

The RV show concluded Sunday at the Prairie Capital Convention Center. About 60 RVs were on display, ranging from small popups to luxury motorhomes.

“We have every kind of RV there is,” said Dennis Johnston, event coordinator. “We have something for young families, and we have something for the person who wants to travel.”

The Dawes already have a 27-foot RV, but are looking at getting one a little larger. Last year, the retired couple spent about seven weeks on the road, including a five-week trip to the Northwest.

Both said they prefer camping to a hotel.

“You don’t socialize much when you stay in a hotel. You just go in your room and stay,” Marlene Dawe said. “When you camp, you sit outside around the campfire.”

Johnston calls that the RV lifestyle.

“At a campground, 90% of the time, some camper will wave at you and help you set up. It’s kind of a throwback to yesteryear, when neighbors took care of neighbors,” Johnston said.

Show patrons could walk through the campers and check out the amenities, which include large-screen televisions and satellite TV.

“There’s a motorhome back there that’s bigger than my first apartment,” Johnston said. “You’ve got satellite TV and slide-outs that come out on both sides of the vehicle making it 12 feet wide. There are living rooms that aren’t 12 feet wide.”

The outdoor kitchens that caught the Dawes’ eyes are also handy.

In one vehicle, a door on the outside of the camper opens to reveal a refrigerator, television and stove. That way, people can spend more time outdoors and visit with their campground neighbors.

“It’s all about the fresh air and enjoying the great outdoors,” Johnston said.

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