Editor’s Note: The following is an exclusive report by RVing Examiner reporter Julian Gothard.
Scottsdale Arizona-based Carefree RV Resorts has joined the rapidly increasing roll of Tents for Troops (T4T) members and brought a further 28 RV resorts — including 14 Canadian parks — into the Castle Rock, Washington-based organization’s philanthropic military camping network.
The RVing Examiner reported that the inclusion of select campgrounds from Carefree RV Resorts — which owns and operates 79 destination RV parks and manufactured home communities across North America — not only augments and strengthens the Tents for Troops roster in Florida, Texas, North Carolina, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and Arizona but also provides the T4T network with a superlative set of international credentials.
“It’s the biggest single day addition to our park roster we have ever seen,” said Charlie Curry, 57, the founder and driving force behind the diminutive 501c3 non-profit advocacy group that has since its inception in 2010, offered active military, reservists and their dependents complimentary camping across America.
To read the entire article click here.
“Tents for Troops” reported it has added 15 parks across 13 states during the past two weeks. According to a press release, the program offers free RV and camping sites to active military personnel and their families by utilizing your otherwise vacant sites.
“We are getting close to having parks in all 50 states,” said founder Charlie Curry, noting that remaining states were Rhode Island, North Dakota and Hawaii. “We never ask for a site that a park could otherwise have rented.”
New parks include:
• Hartland Lake Marie Campground, Grafton, W.Va.
• Hoquiam RV Park, Hoquiam, Wash.
• Benton RV Park, Benton Mont.
• J & J RV Park, W.V.
• Cooters Cabins & Camping, W.Va.
• Sacajawea Inn & RV Park, Idaho
• Fans of Sycamore Springs, Ind.
• Paradise Island RV Park, Ala.
• Abrams Creek Lodge & Family Campground, Va.
• Logan landing RV & Cabin Resort, Ala.
• Wallace Hotel & RV Park ID, Idaho
• Rawlins KOA, Wyo.
• 711 Ranch, Colo.
• Washington Valley RV Park, Okla.
• Lake Aire RV Park & Campground, S.C.
Tents for Troops (T4T) has added three new parks as a result of the recent National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (ARVC) conference in Knoxville, Tenn., according to a press release.
“Although we were unable to attend the show this year, Jennifer Schwartz and Erica Owens of ARVC both went out of there way to make sure that T4T would not miss out on getting some new parks as a result of the conference,” said founder Charlie Curry.
Curry reported that just a few days prior to the conference T4T received a letter from the White House’s “Joining Forces” – an initiative started by First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Byden, wife of Vice President Joe Biden – encouraging RV parks and campgrounds to consider joining the T4T Program. “With truly only hours to spare, Jennifer and Erica inserted a copy of this letter along with a T4T application into the welcome bags of all attendees,” Curry said.
As a result of the efforts, T4T added three parks from northern New Jersey, which raises the total number of facilities to nine in the state. New parks include Kymers Camping Resort, the Delaware River Family Resort and Panther Lake Camping Resort.
For more information on Tents For Troops visit http://tentsfortroops.org.
Since its inception in 2010, the Tents for Troops (T4T) program that offers free camping to active U.S. military members has grown to an impressive 245 parks in 41 states. But its founder, Charlie Curry, is just getting started.
“We want to visit every military base in the country. We’d go in with a motorhome, set up for the day and give handouts about the program,” Curry said. “And when we’re done, we’d just start over again.”
Woodall’s Campground Management reported that Curry’s passion for the program is evident from the time and effort he spends aggressively promoting it and expanding upon it in addition to running his own campground, Toutle River RV Park in Castle Rock, Wash. “I work days here, but I’m usually up until 2 a.m. working on Tents for Troops,” he admitted.
In response to his efforts, Curry has gained support from entities like the National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (ARVC) and Fleetwood RV Inc., government representatives and high-ranking military officers, and celebrities such as Robin Williams and Willie Nelson, who brought thousands of visitors and “likes” to T4T’s website and Facebook page through social media endorsements.
Believe it or not, these aren’t the only items on his agenda for 2013. Curry’s current headliner is a free RV loaner program whereby active military could borrow fold-down campers, travel trailers or motorhomes. He’s already selected a prime area in which to launch his detailed pilot program to test its success level and work out the kinks before expanding it to a broader market. “It could potentially use well over 1,000 RVs, if it were successful,” he predicted.
To read the entire article from Woodall’s Campground Management click here.
Tents for Troops (T4T), an initiative promoting free camping for military personnel, has partnered with motorhome builder Fleetwood RV Inc.
According to a press release, Decatur, Ind.-based Fleetwood will package an information sheet written by T4T board member Evanne Schmarder in the owners manual of every new Fleetwood motorhome. T4T founder Charlie Curry noted that the manufacturer has been a strong support since the program’s inception.
“This is just great news for us and we can not thank Fleetwood enough,” said Curry. “We had hoped to be able to provide Fleetwood with small and classy T4T stickers but after exploring the cost of having those produced we had no choice but to go with to go with a simple information sheet which is fine. Fleetwood sells a lot of RVs and we hope that many of these new RV owners will be helping us spread the word about T4T.”
In other news, Curry reported that actor Robin Williams recently mentioned Tents for Troops on his Facebook page, which in turned generated a surge on the T4T Facebook page in just over 24 hours.
Tents for Troops added parks from 10 states at the recent National Association of RV Parks and Campground’s (ARVC) Outdoor Hospitality Conference and Trade Show in Las Vegas.
“Some amazing parks joined the Tents for Troops (T4T) program in Las Vegas recently and we welcome each and every one,” founder Charlie Curry stated in a news release. “We wish to thank the entire staff at ARVC for providing us the opportunity to attend the conference and meet so many park owners.
“It was a fantastic show and T4T gained a lot of really nice parks. We also wish to thank Dean Crawford at Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Parks for all of the support we have had from Jellystone Parks including two that just joined T4T in Las Vegas.”
Curry told Woodall’s Campground Management he had hoped to add 50 new members after the ARVC event but said he’s pleased with the number of new signees all the same.
The program encourages RV parks and campgrounds to provide camping discounts for active military.
To read the entire story click here.
Tents for Troops (T4T) has created a petition on the White House ‘We the People’ website asking President Barack Obama to issue an executive order compelling all federal parks and recreation areas to allow complimentary camping for both active military and active reserves, a program that’s already in effect at a number of private campgrounds across the United States.
Examiner.com reported that T4T believes that those who are charged with protecting and preserving the constitution and people of the United States “against all enemies, foreign and domestic” should not have to pay in order to enjoy access to federal lands. As a consequence the charity is urging the president to allow a minimum of two nights of free camping for serving personnel, reserves and their immediate families, providing space is available.
Tents for Troops need 25,000 signatures by May 1, 2012, for this petition to be actioned by the current administration and they are asking RVers and recreation enthusiasts for help. To add your support for this initiative – and for the US military – simply head over to the “We the People” website and back the petition.
To read the entire article by Examiner.com click here.
Tents for Troops (T4T), the nationwide network of RV parks and campgrounds offering complimentary camping to active military and their families, added 40 new park participants following a presentation at the National Association of RV Parks and Campground’s (ARVC) Outdoor Hospitality Conference Nov. 29-Dec. 2 in Savannah, Ga.
According to a press release, park owners/operators in attendance were able to learn about program details from founder and park owner Charlie Curry. Several U.S. Marines, including Staff Sgt. Joaquin Montada, Staff Sgt. John Echenique, Sgt. Benjamin Harrelson and Sergeant Matthew Griener, manned the T4T booth to help sign up new participants for the program.
“We are absolutely thrilled with the comments, feedback and registrations we received at the ARVC Outdoor Hospitality Expo,” said Curry. “This exposure gave us the opportunity to talk about Tents for Troops, confirm that there are no obligations for park owners to commit sites during their busiest periods, and communicate the gratitude our troops have expressed for this program.” He added his sincere thanks to ARVC for supporting T4T as well as our troops and for the opportunity to be present at the conference.
Several park representatives spoke with Curry and took information back to their parks for further consideration. Curry expects quite a few more parks to join the network after the New Year as a result of the expo.
New park participants are being added to the T4T website daily with the total number of participating parks at nearly 200 and growing. To complete the registration form visit www.TentsforTroops.org, and submit it to Curry at TentsforTroops@aol.com or via fax at 360-274-5390.
Tents for Troops (T4T), www.TentsforTroops.org, the nationwide network of RV parks and campgrounds offering complimentary camping to active military and their families, is seeking assistance with a feasibility study.
According to a press release, T4T is interested in studying the possibility of offering the use of RVs to troops nationwide at no cost. T4T said the scope of this program could prove very large, requiring a great deal of input in determining program viability.
According to the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA), 7.7% of the active military personnel camped in an RV in the past six months. Based on a recent comScore Inc. report, that equates to approximately 115,000 troops.
T4T is interested in establishing how such a program may operate and examining the logistics of such an undertaking in the following areas:
• Demand for such a program and the number/type of RVs most suitable.
• Optimum location to work from – near major military bases, major population areas, etc.
• Administration and housing of RVs – possibilities may include national or regional RV retailers and/or service centers, national or regional RV rental firms, retail big box chains, auto or truck rental firms, military bases.
• Fleet maintenance – modeled on the Cruise America/Jiffy Lube program.
• Designing and locating a pilot program if deemed appropriate.
• Examining long- and short-term funding requirements, funding sources, self-sustainability.
T4T welcomes assistance from every corner of the RV and outdoor hospitality industry whether it’s simply a comment or observation or staff time to commit to the feasibility study. As noted, this project is in an exploratory phase. With help from those in the industry, T4T can determine whether or not to move forward with this RV availability project. Interested parties are encouraged to contact Tents for Troops founder Charlie Curry at 360-274-7915 or TentsforTroops@aol.com.
Tents for Troops, the organization that provides free camping for active military, received a huge boost Tuesday afternoon (April 26) as American country singer-songwriter Willie Nelson gave the program a hand in helping spread the word.
Nelson mentioned the program on his Facebook and Twitter account, which combined have over 800,000 viewers. Within an hour the amount of “likes” for the Tents for Troops page doubled, and by that evening it had nearly tripled, according to a news release from the Castle Rock, Wash.-based organization.
“What a gentleman Mr. Nelson is,” says volunteer Lucas Karn. “I think he realizes we need help spreading the word about this program, and he certainly did just that. We now have many more people interested in the program, and many are asking what they can do to help. We have even had new parks asking to join because they heard about it through Mr. Nelson’s Facebook page.”
By Wednesday morning nearly 2,000 people “liked” Nelson’s comment, and it served as a great way to help spread the word about the Tents for Troops program.
“We are very grateful for Mr. Nelson’s help with this, what an amazing guy he is,” Karn added.