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SPRING 2013

Road Show

The

With

John Davidson

New RVs to Eat, Play & Sleep In Top Five RV Beaches


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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013


It’s time to enjoy life. When winter departs and spring arrives RVers take to the highways and byways to enjoy the freshness of the new season. It’s the perfect time to enjoy the great outdoors and catch up with RVing friends. Whether you own an RV, are looking to trade yours, or want to join in the RV lifestyle, we’re here to help. Come shop with us! Our inventory of new RVs is unrivaled and after this winter our used inventory has grown quite extensively. If you’ve already got an RV bring it to us for a service check-up so you’ll be ready for the road when you choose. This is the perfect time to go outside and play in your RV. So don’t hesitate . . . contact us today.

TAMPA | 866.378.5635 TUCSON | 888.521.0209 lazydays.com

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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013


CONTENTS

10

15

28

32

Two for the Road Lazydays experts Dana and Snow take the 2013 Winnebago Tour 42GD for a spin.

Eat, Play, Sleep From food to fun to 40 winks, take your favorite activities to the next level in these new RVs.

A Maverick Born to Be Free Get to know adventureloving Brandon Dodgen and his family business: Born Free Motorcoach.

Taking the Show on the Road With John Davidson Meet the actor, singer and Wicked star who will be RVing cross-country on his national tour.

36

Top Five Beachfront Camping Destinations Get your fill of sand and surf at the Southeast's best waterfront RV resorts.

44 46

RV Quick Tips Helpful hints for organizing your galley storage space.

Destination: Southern Arizona Discover where avid birdwatchers flock each spring to admire the desert's avian gems.

54

Lessons in RVing: Bidding Goodbye to an Old Love One family reflects on an old love, treasured memories and new beginnings.

The Final Features

58

Home Cookin’: Pantry Pride

60

Troubleshootin’ With Ernie: Bed-Making

63

What’s Happening at Lazydays

65

Ed Said: Impressive Improvements

66 68 75 81

Great Gear

82

RV Open House RV Classifieds Partner Spotlight: Chris Pearson Technically Speaking


A big deal - we are authorized to administer not only our warranty but the warranty of our vendors too. Having this in-house will allow us to deliver quicker service times, happier dealers and more satisfied retail owners.

# 2 - QUICK ASSIST:

An industry first - we provide each coach with two hours of service time to quickly diagnose and fix issues without prior pre-authorization. This dramatically shortens the time it takes our owners to get back on the road.

# 3 - 24 HOUR FACTORY SUPPORT:

We provide access to a CrossRoads employee, 24 hours a day for timely, knowledgeable responses.

# 4 - 1 HOUR WORK AUTHORIZATIONS:

Our pledge to our dealers is to quickly and efficiently turn around authorization times within one hour of the dealer request.

# 5 - EMERGENCY PARTS LIST:

By providing our dealers a list of parts that 1: would render the coach unusable or 2: are frequently used, we can better ensure our dealers are prepared for potential issues and can get our owners back on the road without lengthy delays.

# 6 - DEALER STOCK ( OUR CLAIM, THEIR PART )

Making it easy and efficient is what NGV is all about. Allowing our dealers to quickly diagnose using Quick Assist, then allowing them to submit a claim and use their in-house parts to fix the issue is designed to be quick and easy for everyone.

For more details on construction, features & benefits visit our website, call or check out our exclusive retailer, Lazydays Tampa and Lazydays Tucson.

crossroadsrv.com w PH 260 593-3850 6

b betterRVing.com eett et t erR rR RV Vii g Vin g.c .ccom .com m | Sp S Spring prin ing 2 2013 013 13

# 7 - DEDICATED SUPPLIER REPS:

For added piece of mind, CrossRoads has partnered with the industries largest supplier to provide unparalleled support by having two dedicated CrossRoads reps on staff to quickly resolve issues.

# 8 - NGV OWNERSHIP DELIVERY PROCESS:

We Care - our NGV delivery process ensures our owners are not only comfortable with their purchase but they understand how to use, maintain and fully enjoy it.

# 9 - NGV OWNERS CARE KIT:

Generated by Retail Warranty Registrations, and Owners Care Kit gets mailed out to every new CrossRoads owner. The kits include items like caulk, roof sealant, soap, wax, a tire pressure gauge and other items to help maintain a healthy coach.

# 10 - SIX MONTH OWNERSHIP SATISFACTION CERTIFICATE: Peace of Mind - Owners can bring their new purchase back to the selling dealer for a six month check-up on CrossRoads’ dime to further enhance the ownership experience.

# 11 - SHOW ROOM READY INVENTORY:

To help ensure CrossRoads product makes a GREAT first impression, all CrossRoads sales staff and the newly formed DSC will inspect dealer inventory during visits to ensure our product is SHOW ROOM ready.

# 12 - COACH-NET 24HR ROADSIDE ASSISTANCE:

Each CrossRoads product comes standard with one year of Coach-Net for additional peace of mind while our customers are traveling.

©2012 CrossRoads RV

# 1 - CROSSROADS DIRECT:


When you camp with us cooking is optional and having fun is a given. Our beautifully landscaped campgrounds feature paved sites with full 30/50 amp hook-ups. You can relax by the pool, soak in the hot tub or play a game of pool. Best of all, each of our campgrounds has an incredibly cool restaurant and full-service bar for you to enjoy. Tampa sports the Exit 10 Restaurant & Pub, a custom designed 68’ RV that sits smack inside RallyCenter. Exit 10 has become the favorite gathering place of our Tampa campers for lunch and dinner. In Tucson, the Florizona Grille is where our guests meet for food, music and fun with a southwestern feel. Dine inside or al fresco on our covered patio for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Come camp with us and plan on fun instead of dirty dishes. lazydaysRVcampground.com Tucson, AZ | 888.521.0214 Tampa, FL | 877.406.8904

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LETTER FROM THE EDITOR

Better RVers,

t

his issue was created to celebrate what RVers teach the rest of the world every single day. RVers know how to celebrate life regularly. RVers have perfected the art of preserving life’s most memorable moments — making sure to pack the ingredients for campfire s’mores, or grabbing the camera to capture misty morning landscapes, or booking rally reservations for entertaining evenings spent dancing the night away. My favorite feature — “Eat, Play, Sleep” on pages 15-26 — provides tours of several different coaches and offers a chance to meet some of the personalities that make our hallways come alive with smiles. Be sure to make time in the next several months for sharing a good meal, enjoying a lazy morning or delighting in laughter with friends. Lazydays has been undergoing many changes for the better. One of the most exciting is the recent debut of a brick-and-mortar version of our legacy: The Better RVing Store. Many campers joined us to celebrate the grand opening, and we hope you will stop by between your happy travels. Our store is stocked with everything from toilet paper to fireplaces to handcrafted pepper mills. Check out our “Great Gear” section on pages 66-67 to see a few of my favorite items. Now that spring is here, take time to celebrate the events in life that refresh and renew, relax and rejuvenate. That is the true definition of the RV lifestyle. Happy travels,

Ann Cosentino ann@betterRVing.com

Advertising Director Liz Lema 866.317.4012 For advertising inquires: advertising@betterRVing.com Inquiries Subscription and customer service information: info@betterRVing.com Managing Editor Ann Cosentino ann@betterRVing.com All rights reserved © 2013 Lazydays® 6130 Lazy Days Boulevard, Seffner, FL 33584-2968 betterRVing.com is published four times per year by Lazydays. No responsibility can be accepted for unsolicited manuscripts or photographs, which must be accompanied by a self-addressed envelope with return postage. The views expressed in this magazine are not necessarily those of the publisher.

Lazydays units and list prices are subject to change and based on availability.

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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013


R

A

W

A

R D

W I N

N

E

HOME RUN! Touch all the bases with the luxurious new Winnebago Tour® 42GD! This unique, beautiful and supremely livable floorplan will delight you at every turn. Entertaining the team? Up front, the galley – with double sink, residential-style refrigerator and pull-out island — transitions gracefully into the dining area. From there, you enter the attractive lounge, which features our exclusive Rest Easy® Extendable Sectional Sofa as well as a huge 55-inch TV that puts you right in the middle of the action. Just beyond the huge walkthrough bath you’ll find the master bedroom with powered king bed, matching nightstands, deluxe wardrobe and chest of drawers. And since the 42GD is built on our tag-axle Maxum® chassis, storage abounds, while the ride and handling are as plush as its interior. It’s game time and you’re at the plate: Stop by Lazydays® to see the 42GD in person, call 800-643-4892, or see it online at GoWinnebago.com. ©2013 Winnebago Industries, Inc

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TWO FOR THE ROAD BY FRED SMITH

2013 Winnebago Tour 42GD Dana Philp 29+ years RV sales experience; Black Belt in RV fun Snow Chamberlain 33 + years professional RV experience; more than 500,000 miles driven

He’s logged more than half a million miles on the open road. She’s taught more RVers how to have a good time than she can remember. Here’s what happened when Lazydays’ road warrior and the RV industry’s guru of fun took the 2013 Winnebago Tour 42GD for spin.

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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013


EXTERIOR Dana and Snow admire the Tour’s Silver Sage full-body paint job glistening in the spring sun. Dana: Winnebago sure knows how to impress RVers. Their coaches took two gold awards and a silver in MotorHome magazine’s first-ever Readers’ Choice Awards, and Statistical Surveys just named them the country’s #1 motorhome manufacturer in terms of both volume and overall growth. They’ve also earned the RV Dealers Association Quality Circle Award every year since 1996, and they truly are one the easiest companies to do business with in our industry. Snow: I agree. Winnebago has been like a rock in this industry for more than five decades. Dana: Well, I’ll take full credit for their stock doubling last year, because I didn't buy any. Snow: I’ve been driving Winnebagos for 26 years, and I can say that the Tour is probably the most luxurious coach they’ve ever produced. Dana: Do you remember the first Class A you ever drove? Snow: Nah — I’m so old I can’t remember my first time.

INTERIOR Snow readies himself behind the wheel by adjusting the electronically adjustable brake and accelerator pedals while Dana gets comfortable in the Ultraleather™ passenger seat. Snow: The panoramic view is great, and I love that the controls are all within your reach so you don’t have to go bouncing around the cockpit when you want to adjust something. It’s even got a carbon-fiber dashboard that looks top-notch.

Snow cranks the Cummins® 450-horsepower ISL Clean Air diesel engine to life. Minutes later, the Tour accelerates onto the highway with ease. Dana: The Tour has an independent front suspension, which makes for a much quieter ride, since any bumps or vibrations from the road will be handled by the independent front suspension and not carry up into the coach. Snow: We’re doing an easy 60 miles an hour with no strain or pain. We’ve got a Freightliner® custom Maxum chassis that’s built specifically for Winnebago. The chassis has a drop-rail frame that not only gives it more stability, but also allows us 200 cubic feet of exterior storage. Dana: That’s 50 cubic feet more than a vehicle that doesn’t have a drop-rail frame. Safety is also important to Winnebago, which is why the Tour has Winnebago’s SuperStructure™ around the cab, surrounding the driver and passenger with plasma-cut steel that’s welded together for added strength. Snow: They thought of everything at Winnebago, didn’t they? Dana: They had to, since they knew you’d be driving.

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LIVING AREA Dana and Snow examine the 2013 Tour’s brand-new floor plan. Dana: This coach has a wonderful residential feel. I personally love the layout of the master chef’s kitchen, because I can cook up a storm and still be part of the party. The appliances are great, too. The stove has induction cooking, which means you can put your hand on the burner when it’s on and not feel a thing; but if you use a magnetic pot, it will boil water in 20 seconds. The microwave looks like it belongs in an art museum. It’s the same kind of appliance we would find in a Prevost® bus. Snow: Since Winnebago makes about 85 percent of

everything in this coach at their factory, it’s easy to get parts when you need them. I’m a big fan of the big-screen TV. That’s where you’ll find me on Sundays when the race is on. Dana: The TV is 55 inches and has an LED backlight that makes it so easy on the eyes. And the Rest Easy® L-shaped extendable sofa has recliners and ottomans with reversible tops, so they can be footrests or coffee tables. If you watch the race here, it’ll look like the cars are coming into your coach.

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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013

MASTER BEDROOM AND BATH Surrounded by coffee-glazed wood trim cabinetry, the duo takes in the Tour’s master bedroom and bath. Snow: The bathroom has a ton of space and a one-piece shower stall. Dana: You’ve also got a stackable washer and dryer that sit on top of tile instead of carpet, which is much better over the long haul. Snow: This closet in the bedroom is so big you could sleep in it. Dana: I’d prefer sleeping in the king-size adjustable bed

with separate controls for firmness. Snow: That might cut down on my snoring. Dana: You’d snore a lot less if you slept on the couch. ■


LiƩle Guy is proud to announce its newest partner, and western Florida’s exclusive LiƩle Guy dealer, Lazydays ● So light any car can tow ● Fun, fuel efficient, and cost effec ve ● Queen and king size beds ● Sinks, stoves, fridges, A/C, heat, TV, roof racks and more! The possibili es are endless!! ● Over a dozen models to choose from ● Made in an Amish factory with high quality materials

As seen on

● Under 1,700 pounds ● Tow it with any small SUV, even a VW Beetle ● Loaded with op ons, sink, stove, fridge, heat, A/C, TV, dine e, queen bed, and more ● Different color choices available to fit your style ● 3 floor plans to choose from ● Made in the same Amish factory with high quality materials ● Add space to your T@B with our custom awning and add-a-room tent made just for the T@B

877.545.4897

Fun, fuel efficient, and cost effec ve…..What more could you want!

Get yours today

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Our popular Phaeton® is engineered for years of reliability. So you can arrive in time for the show. And since we’re every bit as particular about your buying and service experience, we are proud to partner with Lazydays. Visit tiffinmorhomes.com.

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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013


Get your apron on. Go exploring. Grab some Zs under the stars. Big or small, luxurious or nimble, there’s a perfect RV ready to take you on your dream adventure. When you’re out there on the road, there are no worries. It’s just eat, play, sleep.

BY JENNIFER RUYLE, PHOTOGRAPHY JEFF FAY

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eat

Grand Design Solitude

The Grand Design Solitude Galley Sizzles With 5-Star Features No matter how you slice and dice it, the new Grand Design Solitude will have you drooling over its spacious and functional premium galley. The heart of this well-designed fifth wheel gives seasoned cooks and social eaters alike a place to prepare and gather for memorable meals. Grand Design RV, a new company launched by former Thor executives, took special care and the female perspective into account when creating the galley. For example, the upper freezer is positioned at a mid-level height for easy visibility inside. Soft flooring makes for more comfortable entertaining around the island. And a

Jerry Brown — a 27-year Lazydays sales veteran and professionally trained chef — cooks up Cajun

perfect working triangle

gourmet in the Solitude’s functional galley. “I don’t have to go more than three steps to get what I need.”

gives the family chef easy access to the large pantry, undermount sink and food prep areas. Whether you crave gourmet goodies or good ol’ barbecue, get in the Solitude and get eatin’! If this preview whets your appetite, you’ll discover a lot more to savor in the Solitude. Email Jerry Brown for information or a tour. jbrown@lazydays.com

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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013


Large, Luscious Pantry Multi-size,

HIGHLIGHTS

full-extension drawers have built-in latches

• LG® True Solid-Surface

so food stays in place.

Countertops • Stainless Steel

Premium Faucet and Sink The stainless steel undermount sink and metal pullout spray faucet make for easy cleanup. Appetizing Extras LED and soffit lighting create added ambiance.

Undermount Sink • Large Pantry • 80-Pound Full-Extension Drawer Glides With Built-in Latches • Metal Pullout Sprayer Faucet • LED Lighting • Residential-Size

FLOOR PLAN: 369RL

Microwave • Backsplash • Power Vent Fan • Soffit Lighting • Optional 12 Cubic-Foot Refrigerator • Optional Convection Microwave Oven MS RP: $72,060

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without compromise

LISTEN.

Do you hear the roar of an engine, the churning

of tires? What about the sudden stir of wind as you open up the throttle?

YOU DON’T HEAR IT?

Well, good. When you drive an Entegra Coach, you should expect the quietest-riding, best-handling motor coach. Period.

THE RIDE OF YOUR LIFE STARTS WITH OUR CAB-FORWARD DESIGN. hear it for yourself.

visit lazydays, our exclusive retailer, for your next joy ride. 18

betterRVing.com | Spring 2013commitment of unfailing customer service and unmatched quality. Sharing in our


eat

Winnebago Adventurer

The Winnebago Adventurer Makes Entertaining Easy and Mealtimes Memorable HIGHLIGHTS • Full-Wall Slideout Floor Plans

FLOOR PLAN: 32H

• TrueAir® Maximum Comfort Air Conditioning System • MCD American Duo™ Solar/ Blackout Roller Shades • Swivel Ultraleather™ Cab Seats • Clean and Convenient Gasoline Power • Stylized Aluminum Wheels • RV Radio®/Rearview Monitor System MSRP: $159,371

When you own a Winnebago Adventurer, you can’t help but want to stay in for dinner ... and invite company over to show off the spacious and ultra-luxurious dining and entertaining areas. The Adventurer is sure to impress with its roomy U-shaped dinette or optional BenchMark® full-comfort dinette, which boasts hidden storage beneath flip-up

The 2013 Winnebago Adventurer embodies a

seats. With a flawlessly designed, L-shaped

brand built on innovation.

layout, the premier galley

Email Matt Sibbick to learn

gives you every reason

about more goodies in

to get cooking — and

this great RV. msibbick@

entertaining.

lazydays.com

19


Right Height With an exterior height

HIGHLIGHTS

under 11 feet, the Four Winds easily clears

• Leatherette Driver and Passenger Captain’s Chairs

bridges and RV storage units.

• 55-Gallon Fuel Tank

Room for All Lots of sleeping options mean you can bring the whole family. ®

Power to Go A Ford 6.8-liter V10 gas engine (or available Chevrolet® 6-liter V8) gives you ample horsepower and torque.

• Queen-Size, Pillow-Top Denver Mattress® • One-Touch Dream Dinette® Sleeper • 6-Gallon DSI Gas/Electric Water Heater • Residential Refrigerator

MICRO

CLOSET

SHOWER

FLOOR PLAN: 26A

22” LCD TV

BOOTH DINETTE SOFA

QUEEN BED 60” X 74”

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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013

With 1800-Watt Inverter • Side-Mounted Patio Awning

CAB OVER BUNK

• 5,000-Pound Trailer Hitch MSRP: $91,010

REFER

ENTRY


PLAy Thor Four Winds

The Four Winds Class C Caters to Your Every Whim — From the Great Wide Open to Cozy Campsites Perfectly sized and packed with amenities, the Four Winds by Thor Motor Coach gives you all the luxurious comforts and premium finishes found on larger motorhomes — without the extra bulk. This powerhouse Class C easily maneuvers anywhere, from the local mall to breathtaking national parks. With many floor plans under 30 feet, like the 26A shown here, the Four Winds is ideal for those who want to get up and go. Find a secluded spot, put up the patio lights and head out to play. Having fun comes standard ... sleep Whether you’re tailgating on weekends or trailblazing uncharted territory, the Four Winds has built-in versatility to take you on any adventure.

is optional. Feeling inspired by the beachy-keen campground in these pics? See page 37 for details on Fort DeSoto (shown here) and other great waterfront RV sites.

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PLAy Thor Four Winds

Take Advantage of New Technology on the Road Audrey and Dave Watkins live their RVing life to the fullest. You will always see these (mostly) full-timers with smiles on their faces and technology devices in their hands. Dave is responsible for keeping Lazydays RVers updated on new, fun and useful technology in our weekly seminar courses. Stop by and sit in on this college professor's many classes, like "Traveling With a Smart Phone," to stay current on the fast-paced information highway. You're sure to walk out with useful information — and a smile. Find a class at lazydays. com/explore-lazydays/ education-training.html

Ready for some fun? Email Mario Defreitas to learn how Four Winds puts the “recreation” in RVing. mdefreitas@lazydays.com

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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013


DRIVEN FURTHER.

2013 AMERICAN EAGLE

Our dedication doesn’t stop when a customer drives off the lot. It’s the pivotal force that sets us apart through dealer partners like Lazydays, unparalleled customer support, and industry-leading engineering and construction. After all your hard work, many will see your motorcoach as the ultimate sign of success. At American Coach, we measure our success through the satisfaction of the most loyal customers in the industry. We’re more than a motorcoach manufacturer. We’re a partner in the pursuit of your passion. Begin at Lazydays or visit AmericanCoach.com to build a customized American Coach that’s all your own.

DRIVING YOUR PASSION

AMERICAN HERITAGE | AMERICAN EAGLE | AMERICAN TRADITION | AMERICAN REVOLUTION Find us on Facebook at facebook.com/americancoach

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sleep Forest River Georgetown

Enjoy Sweet Dreams for Up to Eight in the Forest River Georgetown When the sun goes down, Forest River’s Class A Georgetown becomes the perfect oasis where you can unwind. In addition to a walk-around queen bed in the private master bedroom, this R&R haven offers a bunk over the cab, a convertible dinette and even a soft-touch Hide-aBed® queen sleeper sofa. With enough room to accommodate eight, there is plenty of space for everyone to find comfort after a day of play. Then, when the sun comes up, start the day off with breakfast in your Dream Dinette™ and feature-rich kitchen, which includes thoughtful additions like a hand-laid glass tile backsplash and high-ride kitchen faucet

When your traveling companions stay up late, you can shut the solid pocket door and sleep soundly in the walk-around

with pull-out sprayer. The

queen bed. There’s also ample room in the wardrobe closet for all your favorite pajamas.

Georgetown combines beautiful interior styling with spacious exterior storage. So whether you're planning a romantic adventure for two or full-family togetherness, this dreamy RV is the perfect fit. Started daydreaming about your RV adventure yet? There are a lot more popular options to see in person. Email Jeri Abell for information or a tour. jabell@lazydays.com

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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013


Easy-Access Cockpit A deluxe dash and

HIGHLIGHTS

soft-touch cab seats make for a supremely

• Seamless Wrap-Over

comfortable cockpit.

Fiberglass Roof • Deluxe Solid-Surface

Huge Rear Storage Ample exterior compartments allow you to bring everyone's favorite toys and gear. Power Pro Electric Awning The optional electric awning makes it a snap to enjoy the great outdoors, day or night.

Kitchen Countertops • Undermount Stainless Steel Sink • One-Piece Windshield for Panoramic Views • Dream Dinette™ • Flat Floor Throughout • Slide-Out Pantry • 32-Inch LCD/HD Bedroom TV • 30-Inch Over-the-Range

FLOOR PLAN: 329DS

Microwave • Rear-Vision Color Backup Camera • Slide-Out Awnings • Outside Shower • Designer Lighting Package • One-Piece Fiberglass Shower MSRP: $127,199

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sleep Coachmen Clipper

The Clipper Gives

STORAGE

Them Even More

SEATING W/STORAGE

DINETTE

Reasons to Ask,

O/H

CLOSET

“Are We There Yet?” SEATING W/STORAGE

The Coachmen Clipper ultralight conventional travel

FLOOR PLAN: 13SV

HIGHLIGHTS

trailer will help you create

• Residential-Grade Flooring

priceless family memories

• Lumbercore Cabinetry

— at an unbelievable price.

• Extra-Deep Kitchen Sink

Depending on floor plan,

• Two-Burner LP Range

you’ll find a roomy full bed

• Power Bath Fan

for Mom and Dad, bunks

• Diamond-Plate Front Wall

for the kids and/or a dinette

Protector • .024 Mesa Aluminum Exterior

that converts into a sleeping area. Big on comfort. Big on amenities. Low in price. The

• One-Piece Rubber Roof

Coachmen Clipper offers

• Exterior Speakers

everything you ever wanted

MSRP: $12,022

in a family vacation. Easy to Own Enjoy the

Can’t get the Clipper out of your mind?

highest standards of safety, fit, finish and practicality.

Email Patrick Calabro

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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013

for a proper introduction

Easy to Enjoy The Clipper

to your dream RV.

is Certified Green by

pcalabro@lazydays.com

TRA Certification.■


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A

Maverick Born to be Free You’ve heard the 1966 Academy Award-Winning song from the movie of the same name, and you know the lyrics by heart. Here’s one generation-nexter who lives the “Born Free” song refrain … and is ready to take its mission even higher. BY MONICA SURFARO SPIGELMAN FAMILY PHOTOS COURTESY OF BRANDON DODGEN

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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013

L

ooking for inspiration to roll through life with gusto and adventure? You’ll find it in 30-yearold Brandon Dodgen, grandson of Born Free Motorcoach founder John N. Dodgen. Welcoming new friends with his trademark grin, Brandon comes across as a well-rounded individual who has already done many things in life. But his current incarnation — working in the family business at Born Free — may be the most fulfilling. “There’s no place else I’d rather be,” says the engaging Iowan, whose life is a snapshot of the Born Free spirit. “Born Free is about finding your open road and enjoying where it takes you. That’s the message my grandfather taught me, and his love of adventure is certainly in my blood.” Brandon’s earliest memories on the road with his grandfather give his adventurous spirit wings. He recalls the family motoring through Mexico when he was six years old. In his teens, Brandon was riding shotgun on caravans to Alaska. Now a lawyer by trade, this piercingly smart guy is eager to share his stories so you will understand his enthusiasm. And, instantly, you do.


Road Tales The way he tells it, Brandon’s journey illustrates what it means to drive through life with the wind in your face. He worked his way through college, spending summers delivering his family’s custom coaches to customers across the country. After graduating from Duke University, Brandon practiced corporate law in Chicago. When wanderlust kicked in, he set off; first to pilot a 30-foot Carver® Mariner down the Mississippi, where he swapped stories with friendly boaters he met along the way. Then Brandon, his grandmother, Wanda, and his grandfather each commanded a Born Free coach, embarking on a month-long trek where they met up with fellow RVers at campgrounds and fully experienced America’s unique topographies. After that, Brandon headed south, motorcycling with his sister Nealy through Central America. A call from a friend redirected him to Jordan, where he completed a five-month assignment teaching science to third-graders before returning to the United States early in 2012. “It was around this time that illness took my grandfather away from the day-to-day running of the

business,” recalls Brandon. So he joined his father, John C.T. Dodgen, to work in all aspects of the company’s Humboldt, Iowa plant. He hasn’t looked back since. “Each adventure introduces me to incredible people and helps me fully experience the profound and varying beauty of our world,” Brandon explains. “Everyone I meet has an amazing story to tell. That’s probably the best part of Born Free — we’re all about the people, and connecting people with their passions.” Made in America Legacy The Born Free organization has been forging emotional connections and impeccably handcrafted coaches for decades. In the 1950s, Brandon’s grandfather began his business by manufacturing farm equipment; but when he saw customers traveling south for winter business, John Dodgen realized there was a way to couple his machinery knowledge with his love of travel. He began manufacturing his award-winning, aerodynamic fiberglass hulls in the 1960s.

29


Brandon’s Recommendations for life on the road

Best BBQ Sauce Sweet and tangy Countryside Bar-B-Q Sauce, made in Algona, Iowa

Best Ride Born Free’s 25-Foot Rear Bath with Slide-Out; it has lots of room with great maneuverability

Best Driving Pastime Sci-fi audio books

Dodgen Family

Best In-Town Transport Honda® 200 motor scooter — comfortable and powerful

Best Rally Food Ribs … and a good, locally crafted beer

Recently Read Solaris, the science fiction novel by Polish author Stanislaw Lem

Family Factoids Brandon is the oldest of seven children. His 14-year-old brother, Thomas, recently accompanied him on a cross-country ride, ensuring that the Dodgen family legacy of sharing adventures continues.

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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013

FUN

Brandon gathers with four of his six siblings for a family photo.

Best-in-Class Service If Born Free customers seem fanatical about their coaches, the company’s employees are even more so. They know it’s not enough to just build a Born Free product. Teams work on each coach, knowing by name (not by number) the family purchasing it. “There are motherson and husband-wife teams, generations working together,” says Brandon. “They know who they’re building the coach for, what the customer’s preferences are. The family’s photo sits by the assembly. There are always last-minute modifications, and everyone contributes. That’s part of the pride,” Brandon smiles. “It’s a badge of honor when you’re finished. We don’t do mass production. When you see another Born Free on the road, no matter where you are, you know you’re sharing camaraderie,” he adds. Caravan Cruisin’ Brandon recalls the motorcoach caravans of his childhood as a big part of the closeknit Born Free experience. Annually, a group of about 25 RVs would head out

through Canada to Alaska for a monthlong adventure. Along the way, the travelers would unwind, swap stories, hike and fish. This year's adventure will be held in July, with the Born Free factory hosting the caravan. “It’ll be led by one of our salesmen and my dad, who will be the tailgunner! My mom and four of my younger siblings will also be joining him,” explains Brandon. “Best part of caravanning for me was the potluck dinners,” he adds, fondly recalling his grandfather’s famous wagon-master stew, which consisted of a “delicious, big pot full of fresh, chopped Southern vegetables like okra and lots of hearty ground beef.” Grills & Grub As the wagon-master stew might imply, Born Free takes its old-fashioned traditions involving food very seriously. According to Brandon, each custom coach ordered from the Born Free factory is delivered with a hefty pack of Iowa chops in the freezer. While the logistics haven’t yet been worked out to make the chops


“Best part of caravanning for me was the potluck dinners,� he adds, fondly recalling his grandfather’s famous wagonmaster stew, which consisted of a “delicious, big pot full of fresh, chopped Southern vegetables like okra and lots of hearty ground beef.�

available to customers who purchase their RV at Lazydays, “It’s something I’d like to do,� says Brandon. Until then, he encourages those Lazydays customers to visit the Humboldt plant when they travel through Iowa. “We’ll definitely hook them up with some chops!� Ever the grill master, founder John Dodgen has spent decades perfecting his barbecues; and the company regularly hosts employee potluck gatherings that feature a Dodgen-grilled Iowa pork loin, slathered with locally made sauce. Brandon often shows up at rallies in his classy, 31-foot, 4-wheel-drive diesel pulling a huge rotisserie and smoker designed by his grandfather. “Food is all part of the adventure,� smiles Brandon. New & Cool Brandon is finding his next adventures back in his hometown, as he works on tech and design enhancements for Born Free coaches. There’s the overhaul of coach interiors, begun last year, which includes DuraCeramicŽ tiles and knotty, grown-in-America, hickory hardwood

cabinet features. These homey touches complement the new high-tech, in-dash touchscreens and electronic shades. Hidden amenities like tankless on-demand water heaters and LED recessed lighting focus on environmental features. An integrated universal control pad to adjust lighting, entertainment and other coach functions is set to be on board this year. Perfect Partners With all the innovation unfolding at Born Free, the recent announcement of a Factory Direct Plus partnership with Lazydays comes as a happy demonstration of shared commitment to quality and the adventurous spirit. “It’s cool that Lazydays is also an American family success story,� remarks Brandon. “Lazydays people go out of their way for each other. So does Born Free. We both understand that people enjoying their passions are what it’s all about, and how working together makes all the difference.� ■

WE ARE SO MUCH MORE THAN TOWING. We have a family of products and we support you in every avenue of recreational travel. 7HETHERITSINAN26 TRAVELTRAILER ORkFTHWHEELTRAILER  WEVEGOTYOUCOVERED!NDWHENYOUPURCHASEA"LUE /XŽPRODUCT YOURENOTJUSTACUSTOMER YOUBECOMEPART OFOURFAMILY My name is Joan Beckman, and I’ve been assmbeling our vast line of products for over 30 years. Blue OxŽ has supported my family in the small town of Pender, Nebraska and holds the same values I do: honesty, dedication, and loyalty. I’m proud to be an Ox. And you should be, too.

  rWWW"LUE/XCOM

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Taking THE

Show Road ON THE

Broadway and TV star John Davidson turns his 41-week Wicked tour into the ultimate RV adventure.

BY JENNIFER RUYLE, PHOTOGRAPHY JEFF FAY

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“The people you meet in the RV parks are great people. It doesn’t matter if you are a doctor, a plumber, a former TV star; if you are an RVer, you share the stories and the camaraderie.”

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his is the year TV icon and musical entertainer John Davidson celebrates his 50th anniversary in show business. This is the year he gets to play the all-powerful Wizard in the national tour of the wildly popular musical, Wicked. And this is the year he fulfills a dream of venturing cross-country in his new Fleetwood Bounder 35K. Rather than staying in hotels for five to six weeks at a time, John and his wife Rhonda will drive from city to city, staying at nearby campgrounds to relish the independent RV lifestyle. “I didn’t want to stay in a hotel for nine months when I could be in a beautiful setting, bring my bikes and sit under my awning playing my instruments,” he enthuses. No stranger to RVing, John’s first purchase was a Four Winds Majestic. “I started out renting, then bought the Majestic; and it was just a great way to discover what RVing was all about.” We were able to catch John in between rehearsals to find out more about this unique performer’s pending journey. Read on for the inside scoop:

John Davidson’s Wicked Tour Dates Dallas, TX

4 / 10 – 5 / 5/ 13 How did you decide to purchase your RV at Lazydays?

Do you think you might sing a song or two for those fellow RVers around you?

New Orleans, LA

I thought, “Where can I find the widest selection? It’s Lazydays.” The biggest benefit is that it doesn’t matter what you are looking for, small or big — they will find what’s right for you. There’s also no pressure. It’s all about finding what you want.

Oh, sure. The people you meet in the RV parks are great people. It doesn’t matter if you are a doctor, a plumber, a former TV star; if you are an RVer, you share the stories and the camaraderie.

Columbus, OH

What are some of your favorite features of the Bounder?

No. Especially not those 8 a.m. knocks on the door to clean your room!

First of all, I knew the minute I saw it. I loved the layout in the Bounder. Two bathrooms are a dream. My wife can have her own bathroom and spend as much time in there as she wants! Also, obviously, I love to watch television. The placement of the TV is perfect. And, wow, the fireplace...! Then there’s the 84 inches of headroom. Height is very important to me.

Is there anything you’ll miss about the lavish hotel lifestyle?

John will soon be on his journey, toting costumes, three guitars, a banjo and a cat named Folly. If you happen to be on your own adventure in one of the cities where the show is on tour, plan a night out away from the campground to see this wickedly talented RVer. ■

5 / 8 – 6 / 2 / 13 6 / 5 – 6 / 23 / 13 Philadelphia, PA

6 / 26 – 8 / 4 / 13 Boston, MA

8 / 7 – 9 / 15 / 13 Minneapolis, MN

9 / 18 – 10 / 27 / 13 Chicago, IL

10 / 30 – 12 / 21 / 13 Providence, RI

12 / 26 / 13 – 1 / 12 / 14 Pittsburgh, PA

1 / 15 – 2 / 9 / 14 Appleton, WI

2 / 12 – 3 / 2 / 14 Cincinnati, OH

3 / 5 – 3 / 23 / 14 Richmond, VA

4 / 23 – 5 / 4 / 14 Omaha, NE

It has to be quite unusual for a performer to drive on his own and stay at a campground. What will your fellow performers think?

5 / 7 – 5 / 25 / 14

A lot of singers and actors don’t realize the luxury in these RVs. It’s not camping; this is more like “glamping.” Plus, I love the independence. I love getting away from it all. I can sit around a campfire and play my instruments. My wife can cook. I can go for a bike ride.

For the most up-to-date tour route information, visit www.wickedthemusical.com.

Tulsa, OK

6 / 18 – 7 / 6 / 14

You can follow Rhonda and John’s journey by going to johndavidson.com and clicking on the Twitter link.

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o C Top Five Beachfront RV Destinations BY PHIL AMMANN

amping on the beach can be an excellent road trip, with

breathtaking views and plenty

of sun, sand and fun. Locating great RV parks near the ocean is not difficult, especially in the Southeast. However, for some RVers, the best family vacations on the beach are when

they can walk out of the rig and put their toes right in the sand. The ultimate beach spot is something directly on the surf. For the RVer who thinks being near the beach is just not close enough, here are the top five places for RV camping on the beach.

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Photo Courtesy of Pinellas County Communications


Fort De Soto Beach St. Petersburg, Fla. South of St. Petersburg, Fla. sits a perfect blend of history, natural beauty and world-class beaches. Fort De Soto Beach has regularly been voted as one of America’s best beaches, with soft, sugarlike sand and stunning views of the Gulf of Mexico. Campers can walk miles of nature trails, rent a kayak, observe wild birds or visit the site of the fort, which dates back to the Spanish-American War. Camping is accessible year-round. With 85 spaces for vans and pop-up trailers and 150 spaces for larger RVs, occupancy is at high demand. Reservations (for a maximum of 14 days) can be made up to six months in advance at www.pinellascounty.org/parks.

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Red Coconut Beach Fort Myers, Fla. Red Coconut RV Resort on Fort Myers Beach, Fla. is one of the finest places to hook up an RV with the Gulf of Mexico as your backyard. Billed as the “world’s safest beach,” Fort Myers Beach has no undertow and is ideal for relaxation in the sun. Silky white sand edges an island seven miles long and only a half-mile at its widest; so even though RV spaces are tight, there are fantastic beach views everywhere. Enjoy the freshest catch-of-the-day seafood for casual dining from nearby fishermen’s docks. The best rates are from May to October, but reservations can be made yearround at www.redcoconut.com.

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Flagler-bythe-Sea Flagler Beach, Fla. This small, no-frills campground is directly on Flagler Beach, about 30 miles south of St. Augustine, Fla. With only 31 full-hook-up sites (13 are pullthrough), Flagler-by-the-Sea is a straightforward RV beach camping experience, providing sand, sun and a terrific view of the Atlantic coast. Reservations are available by calling 386.439.2124.

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Ocean Lakes Myrtle Beach, S.C. Ocean Lakes Family Campground, located on Myrtle Beach, S.C., offers much more than RV camping on the water; it is one of the best family vacations available! The campground boasts a two-acre recreation complex with a pool, sun decks, game center, mini-golf course and an indoor/outdoor cafe. Ocean Lakes offers 893 large, pull-through sites that can accommodate even the biggest luxury RVs. Not only are RVs welcome at Ocean Lakes; golf carts are the preferred way to get around. Bring your own cart or rent one for your stay and take part in one of Ocean Lakes’ regular golf cart parades! Online reservations can be made at www.oceanlakes.com or call 877.510.1413. Express reservation services are also available.

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Anastasia State Park Jacksonville, Fla. Anastasia State Park in St. Augustine, Fla., has 80 sites for RVs with a maximum length of 40 feet. Each site is surrounded by a forest of incredible hammock trees. The glorious foliage offers a canopy of privacy, naturally shielding campers from blowing sand and salt spray. There are 4.5 miles of beach, giving visitors an opportunity to watch birds, dolphins and even whales. Reservations can be made up to 18 months in advance at www.floridastateparks.org/anastasia or by calling 904.461.2033. â– 

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TYRON DRIVES SAFETY HOME. To an RVer, there’s nothing quite as frightening as a blowout. When a tire deflates, air pressure can no longer keep it in place on the wheel and it can cause serious damage and loss of control and braking. When you have Tyron blowout protection fitted to your wheels, deflated tires are supported and kept in place, preventing them from slipping and flailing. Stability, steering and braking are dramatically improved, which can help you avoid damage and disaster. Call 866.531.6818 to talk to a Lazydays sales professional about Tyron.

TYRON 42

betterRVing.com | Spring 2013


THERE’S ONLY ONE RV REPAIR SHOP YOU’LL EVER NEED. (The one staffed by Lazydays service experts.)

Lazydays is your one-stop RV repair shop. We have a diversified team of RV experts ready to take care of your RV service needs. No job is too small or too large for us to handle for you. Within our service department we have specialty shops staffed with experts who are trained to perform those particular RV repairs. We’ve featured three of them here and you can explore more in depth on our website, LazydaysService.com. By the way, your RV did not have to be purchased at Lazydays to take advantage of our RV repair expertise. So when your RV needs attention, just call us for help.

RV SERVICE

Collision: When it comes to repairing your RV after a collision just come see us. We have access to more parts, employ more trained experts and have more experience with bodywork and collision repair than anyone else in the RV industry.

Chassis: There’s a lot riding on your chassis - your family’s safety and comfort, your possessions and your RV lifestyle. We take care of it all. From simple manufacturer recommended routine maintenance to major repairs on your RV frame, engine or electrical systems we keep you on the road . . . safely.

Interior Remodeling: If your RV travels have taken a toll on your RV’s interior bring it to our Tampa Design Center. Whether your RV needs minor repairs or a maximum makeover, our craftsmen have the expertise to make your RV feel like brand new again.

A craftsman for every need TAMPA | 866.456.7014 TUCSON | 888.521.0212

LazydaysService.com

un! CAMPING GEAR RV PARTS, ACCESSORIES AND fFUN

Comep! sho Lazydays Main Bldg. | 6130 Lazydays Blvd., Seffner, FL 33584 | 866.531.6818 Monday - Friday 8am - 5.30pm | Saturday 8am - 5pm | Sunday Noon - 5pm 43


RV Quick Tips

(find more tips at betterRVing.com)

BY BOB DIFLEY

Save Time and Accomplish More With a Junk Drawer Slash the time you spend on simple maintenance and repair chores with a wellplanned “junk drawer.” The key is to replace the usual odds and ends with an assortment of useful tools and supplies. Include a 4-in-1 screwdriver, small tack hammer, regular and needle-nosed pliers, adjustable crescent wrench, cellophane and duct tape, AA and AAA batteries, replacement batteries for your smoke and LP gas detectors, small flashlight, razor blade or box cutter, multi-tool pocket knife, knife-sharpening stone, extension cord, measuring tape, Super Glue® and WD-40®. Add other multi-purpose tools and your own go-to favorites. When you can quickly grab the items you need — rather than having to search through cabinets, outside compartments or tool boxes — you’ll surprise yourself with how easily your “junk drawer” enables you to handle quick fixes.

Maximize Galley Space When provisioning the galley of your RV, you can gain valuable additional storage space by measuring the interior dimensions of your cabinets and buying plastic containers that will fit them like a 3-D jigsaw puzzle, topto-bottom and side-to-side. This is especially helpful for overhead cabinets, where space is often under-utilized. Start by spreading out all the items you will be loading and group them by category, such as cans, dry bulk (rice, beans, pasta, cereal) and snacks; then fill each container snugly with similar items. Finally, label each container on the front-facing side and arrange them in your cabinets. Items inside the containers will not shift or spill when driving, and you’ll have easy access to items at the back of your cabinets by simply sliding out the corresponding container. ■

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The Desert’s Avian Gems discover a special place where winged masters flaunt their grandeur STORY AND PHOTOS BY MONICA SURFARO SPIGELMAN

Springtime in Southern Arizona is for the birds! That’s why it’s a great time to capture Kodak® moments, thanks to displays by hundreds of feathered species that either reside near Lazydays Tucson or stop here en route to warmer climates. 47


Spring birders will chance upon dense nesting areas and may observe hawks, vermilion ycatchers, orioles or hundreds of other species.

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Ground Zero One notable place to be wowed by avian acrobatics is the historic San Pedro House, a 1930s ranch house converted to a visitor center, located just an hour southeast of Tucson. Open daily, with its bustling bookstore and info desk, the San Pedro House is a scenic oasis that’s perfect for picnics and photography. Just a meander from the San Pedro River, the house serves as a starting point for a number of easy trails that wind from the grasslands through to the river. Along here, spring birders will chance upon dense nesting areas and may observe hawks, vermilion flycatchers, orioles or any of the hundreds of other species that have made San Pedro their migration highway. Rare Riparian The river flows through a riparian forest — one of the most endangered forest types in the world — where cottonwoods, velvet mesquite and willow trees provide essential habitat for a variety of wildlife. Riparian zones are part of what make Southern Arizona such a delightful birder attraction. The natural desert ecosystem comes alive when snowmelts drain from mountains. Birder central just might be the San Pedro House, which sits in the heart of the San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area — a huge public land expanse of nearly 57,000 acres designated as a national conservation area in 1988.

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Birder central just might be the San Pedro House, which sits in the heart of the San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area.

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Up With Birding Adjacent to the San Pedro House are ramadas, interpretive exhibits, picnic tables and bird feeders for close-up encounters with the tiny travelers. For a full day of birding, there are guided tours and special programs including hummingbird banding sessions, where trained staff from the Southeastern Arizona Bird Observatory (SABO) band and release hummers as part of bird life migration research. People often return to banding sessions year after year, to check in on record-holding hummers (like the 10-yearold female black-chin, banded in 2006).

Photo courtesy of Derrick Neill

Hoots and High Sightings Bandings, workshops and other programs are held regularly at the San Pedro House, free of charge. Check the Friends of San Pedro River website (www.sanpedroriver.org) for a complete calendar of events. One special celebration you won’t want to miss is the annual Spring Festival and International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD), which will be held on Saturday, May 4, 2013. The all-day event features birdwatching, river walks, live reptiles, raptor show-and-tell, plant sales and family-friendly activities. IMBD is celebrated in Canada, the United States, Central and South America, and the Caribbean. Learn more at www.birdday.org. If a colorful flash of feathers buzzing through the desert quickens your heart, head on out to the San Pedro, where avian encounters will trigger snapshots as well as astonishment. Prime birdwatching — that’s part of the perfection of Southern Arizona’s spring.

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Special programs include hummingbird banding sessions, where trained staff band and release hummers as part of bird life migration research.

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Getting There The San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area is located about seven miles east of Sierra Vista. From Tucson, take Interstate 10 east to State Highway 90. Follow the highway south. You’ll find the San Pedro House visitor center at 9800 Highway 90, Sierra Vista, AZ 85635. Watch for the entrance along a dirt road turnoff just before you cross over the San Pedro. GPS: 31.548192, -110.141464 Beyond Birding The San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area is full of opportunities beyond wildlife viewing. These include camping, hiking, biking, horseback riding and visiting local attractions — like Fairbank Historic Townsite (see below) — as well as a variety of children’s programs. Peek Into the Past You’ll learn tales of the wild west with the San Pedro as your backdrop when you visit the Fairbank Historic Townsite. Once there, you can peer into a restored schoolhouse, view an 1882 Mercantile building and walk the trails to the river. Learn how life was scratched out by hardy pioneers in this historic ghost town, once a thriving stagecoach station and railroad depot. More details can be found on the Friends of the San Pedro River website (www.sanpedroriver.org/fairbank.shtml). Fairbank is located along State Highway 82 (accessible from State Highway 90) in Huachuca City, AZ 85616. GPS: 31.7231456, -110.1884107 ■

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Bidding Goodbye to an Old Love BY CHRISTIAN MUFFOLETTO

W

Christian, daughter of Sales Manager Jim Lazzarino, is currently a college student who has been RVing since she was born. She has seen plenty of RVing gone right and plenty gone funny. Become a better RVer by learning a few humorous lessons.

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M

emories tend to tie themselves to home. No, not houses with white-picket fences, lemonade stands and lunchboxes. But “home” — the place where tears are shed, dreams are shared and memories are made. In our case, home happened to be a place where everyone got the stomach bug and we all had to share a single bathroom. A place where we learned you can’t use a hairdryer, toaster and four cellphone chargers all at once, because something will explode. For my family, home wasn’t always a house; home meant being together and sharing adventures. Home was a Winnebago named Willis. When my parents bought Willis seven years ago, he wasn’t a new RV. But he was the nicest thing we had ever ridden in, and ever had the privilege to call ours. His carpet floors were freshly vacuumed and his mirrors had been wiped clean. He had begun life anew, and was ready for the next journey. When Willis arrived at our house, there were only seven of us kids. Seven years, two more kids and a few thousand miles later, Willis has had his share of adventures. His carpets are dark with the shadows of little feet. His mirrors have fingerprints, hand-prints and nose-prints. One of the couch cushions bears a mysterious stain, though everyone is certain it was someone else’s fault. Willis is by no means the youth he used to be, but he bears his age well. He has grown up with us; since Willis joined the family, two


Lazzarino kids have married and babies have been born — and all the while, faithful Willis carried our growing clan from one adventure to another. But, like all good things, our time with Willis will end soon, as our family begins yet another new chapter in our RVing life. We recently took Willis on his final outing, up to the pristine beauty of the Sewanee River, where our adventures first began. My parents loaded the family into Willis while the two oldest siblings, my brother and I, followed close behind with our spouses. Amid twilight’s shadows, Mom tucked the babies into the same bed that I spent many a teenage year squished into with my sister. Their little feet were hosed off in the same shower that we used every beach trip to try and get sand off all 11 of us. Distinct kid-shaped craters on the beds and cushions hinted at our favorite spots for watching the passing scenery and making faces at fellow travelers. A memory was stashed in every corner — mental snapshots of laughter, love and family identity. For three days, we tromped from Willis, to the river, to my uncle’s river house and then back to Willis. We weren’t the only ones to find all the fun (and smells of good food) irresistible. A grungy, flea-bitten, hungry mutt wandered his way onto our porch, under our garden hose and into our hearts. Chuck Norris Lazzarino would turn out to be the first inside dog my family has ever had, and the best beginning to a new chapter we could possibly ask for. (Out of respect for Willis, Chuck and his flea circus had to ride home in a different car.) That week on the river, we said goodbye to an old love and hello to a new one as we prepared to embark on the next phase of our RV journey. Chuck — safely home, carefully bathed and now happily flea-less — is already making his mark as guardian of my parents’ home. Willis also got a thorough cleaning; he’s now ready for a new family and all of their adventures. Our footprints and fingerprints have been cleared away, but the years of memories are ours to keep. For now, Willis sits out in the front yard, waiting to be driven to the lot and sold. Strangely, my family somehow keeps forgetting to take him. You see, it’s not always easy to say goodbye to a friend that has given you so many memories. Who knows? Maybe the next chapter of Willis’ journey will begin with the next generation of the Lazzarino clan! Although it may be difficult to say our final goodbyes to Willis, my parents are excited about the prospect of finding their next rolling home. Dad says he’d like a more compact towable model that will better suit our family’s traveling needs; something with bunkhouse accommodations for the kids, entertaining space for the adults and a camp kitchen to prolong the outdoor fun. Whatever happens to Willis, he taught us the importance of finding an RV that will give us what we need to make all the wonderful memories we could want. After all, RVing isn’t just about the coach; it's also about all the crazy people you pack inside of it. When you struggle with a difficult goodbye — whether it’s to a beloved RV or a favorite destination — I would remind you of the time-honored lesson we’ve learned, dear reader: When one adventure ends, a new one is just beginning. ■

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THE FINAL FEATURES HOME COOKIN’ | TROUBLESHOOTIN’ | WHAT’S HAPPENING | ED SAID | GREAT GEAR | RV OPEN HOUSE | RV CLASSIFIED | PARTNER SPOTLIGHT | TECH Q&A

RV Open House Page 68-73 57


HOME COOKIN’ Maximo Perez, supervisor chef of Exit 10 and catering, has over 10 years of experience cooking professionally. Visit Exit 10 in Tampa for his latest specialties.

Pantry Pride BY MARY D. SCOURTES

Cooking in your RV kitchen can be healthy, thrifty and fast when you have a number of favorite “go-to” ingredients ready. How does your kitchen stack up? Stocking these staples, along with some fresh seasonal foods and your preferred meats and proteins, makes it easy to prepare sweet, salty and savory culinary creations. Having the right foods will expand your mealtime repertoire, so you’ll have more time to enjoy the great outdoors a little longer. Every RVing cook needs shelf-stable essentials, says Maximo Perez, supervisor chef at Exit 10 Restaurant and Pub at Lazydays RV Campground in Tampa. These items keep a long time; but if you are in doubt, it’s helpful to mark tops with the purchase date to make sure you use the oldest items first. From tossing pasta to making casseroles, these five ingredients are the essentials Chef Max recommends keeping on hand:

Extra-virgin olive oil This liquid gold is a time-tested classic prized for being rich in monounsaturated fats and antioxidants. It imparts a smooth, delicate, fruity aroma. Use it to saute poultry or meat, enhance vegetables, jazz up pasta and add to vinaigrettes and other salad dressings. Spices If it’s true that variety is the spice of life, then where would we be without salt, pepper, garlic, oregano, rosemary and thyme? These seasonings are commonly called for in practically any dish that you prepare.

Flour If the pantry is stocked with all-purpose flour, you don’t have to buy bread flour (higher in protein), cake flour (less gluten) or whole wheat flour (contains both bran and germ). All-purpose flour works best for most baking needs, can be used in a Cajun-Creole roux and serves as a thickening agent for soups and stews. Canned chicken, beef or vegetable broth or stock Broth adds richness to everyday cooking. It can be used to make a quick soup, flavor rice, and enliven meat, seafood and poultry dishes.

Pastas and grains Short pastas — such as penne, fusilli, tortellini or rigatoni — can be served with numerous sauces, including Alfredo, pesto, marinara and clam. Did you know there are thousands of different kinds of rice? Long-grain white rice is a workhorse for stews, soups, vegetables and casseroles. ■

Visit betterRVing.com for RV convection re ecipes.

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TROUBLESHOOTIN’ WITH ERNIE Ernie “The RV Guy” Herring – 35+ Years Experience, RVIA/RVDA Master Certified Technician

bed-making BY FRED SMITH

E

ven the most indomitable RVing spirits have to rest between adventures. For those (like Ernie) whose waistlines are as expansive as their wanderlust, the task of making a bed in the confines of a small RV can be as challenging as shoving a wet noodle up a wildcat’s backside. Years of experience have taught Ernie the value of working smarter instead of harder. So, when it’s time to change the sheets on his RV’s master bed, Ernie uses the popular method championed by a number of betterRVing.com readers on our Facebook page (facebook.com/betterRVing). One obstacle Ernie has to overcome is his inability to access the far corners of his mattress, since they’re lodged in a hard-to-reach spot and there is not enough space on the sides of his bed to easily grasp them (Figs. 2 & 3). To remedy this situation, Ernie is simply going to shift his mattress away from the wall (Fig. 4) until he can easily reach the corners and slip his sheets on or off (Fig. 5). As Ernie has learned, not every problem an RVer encounters on the open road will require fancy tools or technical know-how. When he overcomes such a challenge, Ernie knows the perfect activity to celebrate his achievement (Fig. 6). Fortunately for our readers, this celebration doesn’t involve seeing Ernie in his pajamas. Be sure to visit betterRVing.com to see videos of Ernie troubleshootin’ all kinds of RV-related problems. Remember to always consult your owner’s manual or a certified RV technician before attempting to work on your RV. No RV technicians were harmed during the writing of this article. ■ Watch Ernie’s video on betterRVing.com

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To make it easier tto os slide lide the mattress, some RVers place a plastic tablecloth underneath it. This minimizes any friction the mattress may experience when it slides in and out of position. Using this system, RVers with tight bedrooms will find it much easier to make the bed.


Fig. 1: Ernie sizes up his nest for an afternoon nap.

Fig. 2: Reaching the bed corners is a pain.

Fig. 3: Ernie feels that pain.

Fig. 4: Ernie pulls the mattress away from the wall.

Fig. 5: He can now easily access his bed corners.

Fig. 6: Ernie rests easy in his freshly made bed.

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Turning a Lazy Day

Into Summer Fun.

At Forest River, we know your dreams of life on the road are about sharing adventures, discovering new places and enjoying the relaxing day with friends and family. Forest River’s full lineup gives you the opportunity to EXPLORE.

So what are you waiting for? Visit lazydays.com and get lost in a Forest today!

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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013


WHAT’S HAPPENING

m ay jully July 3-10 Calgary Stampede | Lazydays RV Vacations Where: Calgary Stampede (McMahon Stadium) 1817 Crowchild Trail NW, Calgary, AB T2M 4S7 Get an up-close and personal look at this worldclass ridin’, ropin’ and rodeoin’ event. It’s part family reunion, part state fair and part cowboy olympics. This spectacular Lazydays RV Vacation includes these rally highlights: breakfast atop Calgary Tower; visits to Calgary Heritage Park, Rope Square and Olympic Plaza; guaranteed seating for the Chuckwagon Races; 25 events and tours; and seven meals. Be a part of the 2013 Calgary Stampede rally for just $2,595, which covers two people and one RV. Call Lazydays RV Vacations at 800.388.9338 to book your trip. lazydays.com/travel/tours/stampede.html

May 8-11 Old-Fashioned Fun at Lazydays Tampa Where: Lazydays RV Campground 6210 County Road 579, Seffner, FL 33584 Join us for a traditional Lazydays Old-Fashioned Fun rally. This event kicks off in the middle of the week, so full-time, retired and easy-breezy RVers can get an early start on all the fun. The nights are filled with entertainment, while the days are reserved for complete relaxation around the pool, taking a walk, window-shopping on the beautiful grounds, or sitting in on an informative seminar. Call 800.350.6731 or reserve online for only $179, plus tax. lazydaysrvcampground.com/reservations.aspx

We Are Simplifying Service! Be sure to check out our updated RV Service site, where you’ll find monthly specials dedicated to keeping your valuable investment in tip-top shape. Whether you’re near Tampa or Tucson, we have an RV service bay and an expert technician waiting for you. Make your appointment today! lazydaysservice.com

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Pursue your RV dreams in the new P leasure-Way Pursuit B P lus Motorhome Built on the Ford E350 dual rear wheel cutaway chassis, the Pursuit is easy to drive and achieves great fuel economy. The Pursuit is unique due to many of its special features, but primarily because it is 22 feet long. This new B Plus motorhome is constructed with the same attention to detail and commitment to quality and safety that Pleasure-Way Industries Ltd. is known for. View our models at www.pleasureway.com or visit them at Lazydays, one of our premium dealers.

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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013


ED SAID Ed Crowell – 18 Years Experience, RVIA/RVDA Master Certified Technician, Service Manager Lazydays Tucson

There are lots of great products to grab our attention in 2013. Whether you’re a weekend warrior looking for a multipurpose camper/trailer or a full-timer in search of a new on-road luxury estate, Ed shares his top three picks from among the latest innovations gracing our showrooms.

impressive improvements BY MONICA SURFARO SPIGELMAN

What’s your definition of high-tech improvement? For me, it’s a balance of functional features, cutting-edge hardware, quality design and efficient installation aids. There have been a lot of “oohs” and “aahs” around the Lazydays maintenance bays following the introduction of noteworthy improvements that benefit the RV owner. Do you have a favorite? Here are three of my picks:

Weighing in on Tire Pressure

Multi-Satellite and Mobile

Making Leveling Less of a Handful

Tire-pressure monitoring systems (TPMS) have been on the front burner for a few years, and Lazydays is on top of the latest technology that continuously monitors tire pressure and temperature. My favorite is the top-tier Tyron TPMS. Through a simple, visual module, the Tyron system provides a customizable framework for RV safety. There’s easy installation of a reliable smart monitor that has a variety of mounting options for your dash or windshield. The system assigns sensors to alert you to problems before they become serious. That means the system’s multiple signals provide real-time warnings — helping you avoid tire failure, accidents and damage to your coach. Tyron has been in the business a long time, and I consider the brand a big shot in the tire-monitoring industry.

How many features can you pack into a satellite TV antenna? Winegard® rules the road when it comes to answering that question. Whether you’re interested in an antenna that allows you to enjoy your programs on the road, at the campsite or when tailgating, Winegard is there with reasonably priced options to handle all the variables. If you’re interested in HD programming and a DVR, the Winegard TRAV’LER® series brings crystal-clear, strong signals to your coach, even if you have three receivers or more. This product enables both DIRECTV® HD and DISH Network® programming. Winegard never compromises quality. It is easy to install and stows in a low profile. Operation is simple, too — one button allows you to find multiple satellites within minutes, so everyone can enjoy their favorite programs from the same antenna.

The advanced six-point leveling system by Lippert Components Inc.® is here to save the day for those of us who have been frustrated by trying to level a coach in sloped, uneven campsites. Lippert’s Level Up™ automatic, touch-of-a-button technology was introduced a couple of years ago, and it’s still truly revolutionary in terms of leveling your coach quickly and safely. The system is fail-safe and its hydraulic pumps protect you from putting jacks in a sequence that could cause damage. It also reduces rocking and all the issues caused by swaying. The Level Up has a backup in an electrical failure situation. Lazydays is a factory-certified shop for installing these systems, which protect the integrity of your chassis and go beyond traditional four-point products. ■

See more of Ed's picks at betterRVing.com

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GREAT GEAR Now that The Better RVing Store is open for business, we thought we'd share a sampling of some of the fun and whimsical products you'll find there. (We go way beyond the basics of toilet paper and sewer hose hook-ups!) Since our new store has an entire section dedicated to pet owners, we've also included several items that celebrate those furry pals who make life worth living. Treat your companions to a few of these goodies and show them just how special they really are. Vet's Best Ve Bes ™ Waterless Dog Do Bath When you're on the roa road, finding the time and sspace to give a proper dog do bath can be a challenge challenge. Vet's Best to the rescue! Yo Your furry bestie will full-body rubdown enjoy a fu with this w waterless foam dog bath, which is a must animal-loving for every a RVer's sup supply bin. $8.49

PawGanics™ Floor Cleaner Make your RV sparkle and keep floors safe for your furry pals (or crawling kids) with this natural, non-toxic cleaner. PawGanics provides chemical-free, fragrance-fee solutions for cleaning all of your RV's surfaces. Find this and other PawGanics products at The Better RVing Store in Tampa. $8.29

The Pet King Portable Travel Bowl These bowls are all thrills and no spills, making travel with your best friend simple and mess-free. Fill the dishes with Fido's favorite food on one side and fresh water on the other. When it's time to pack up, snap the covers into place, fold and go. $20.68

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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013


Womp'Em Sticks™ by Campfire In A Can® These versatile sticks make your campfire cookout come alive with finger-lickin' fun. Use the wooden head of your Womp'Em Sticks to cook hollowed out biscuits, then insert the metal prongs to roast hot dogs or marshmallows. Fill the biscuit shell with anything you like, from bacon and eggs to ice cream. Your campg campground neighbors will want to Womp'Em, too! $23.79

Kyjen Plush Puppies® Bottle Buddies Is your dog thrilled when you finish your bottled water because it means a new toy to play with? Next time, pop the empty plastic bottle inside a Plush Puppies Bottle Buddy. The plush toy will extend playtime with the bottle, maintain the crunch and crackle, and protect your pooch from sharp edges. It's dogrrific! $8.39

Unbreakable ble Wine Glasses by Camco Glam Glamping enthusiasts will adore these sleek wine glasses glasses, which look and feel el like glass. The only difference is w when you hit a bump in the road, you'll still have something to toast with instead of shards to clean. So, raise your glass and say "Cheers!" to happy travel and safe sipping! $15.59

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RV OPEN HOUSE

2013 Fleetwood Bounder

Two bathrooms and 270 cubic feet of storage — need we say more? The 2013 Fleetwood Bounder 35K has something for everyone. The layout creates defined living spaces that flow comfortably from one to the next, making the Bounder feel more like a condo than an RV. Stretch out on the wraparound sofa as you watch television and cozy up in front of the fireplace. Or whip up a decadent meal in the spacious galley, which features a double-bowl sink, large refrigerator and three-burner stove. Fabulous options like an outdoor entertainment center, laundry area and king bed make the Bounder a full-timer’s paradise. Explore the Fleetwood Bounder at Lazydays today! MSRP: $146,789 Stock #1015970

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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013


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RV OPEN HOUSE

2013 Tiffin Motorhomes Allegro RED

Roomy, yet cozy, the 2013 Allegro RED from Tiffin Motorhomes welcomes adventurers with warm tones and comfy furniture that invite you to kick back and relax. This rear-engine diesel (RED) cleverly optimizes every bit of available space — from the sprawling cockpit to the 160 cubic feet of basement storage to the large, residential refrigerator and space-saving cabinetry. The huge, U-shaped dinette is perfect for family game night, and the entertainment package will keep everyone happy on the road. Is the Tiffin Allegro RED your family’s next home-away-from-home? Visit Lazydays to see this feature-packed RV for yourself.

MSRP: $222,397 Stock #1016076

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RV OPEN HOUSE

2013 Winnebago Tour

The 2013 Winnebago Tour is ideal for entertaining on the road. Invite your new friends over for cocktails or dinner and you'll be the envy of the campground. Your guests can relax on the butterysoft Ultraleather™ sofas while you prep the hors d'oeuvres in your fully decked-out, residential-style galley. Create a welcoming ambiance with warm accent lighting that shimmers off the polished porcelain floors and Corian® countertops, while the state-of-the-art entertainment system captivates and amuses. When the evening draws to a close, slip the dirty dishes in the drawer-style dishwasher, then crawl into your plush king bed with Ideal Rest® Natural Reserve digital comfort-control mattress and dream of your next fascinating destination.

MSRP: $381,265 Stock #1015567

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LANCECAMPER.COM

Go Anywhere | Go Any Time | Go Now

Find Your Perfect Fit | Lazydays 74 betterRVing.com | Spring 2013


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RV CLASSIFIED IN TAMPA, CALL 888.626.7800

• IN TUCSON, CALL 888.426.5481

2011 Tiffin Allegro Bus

2013 Pleasure-Way Plateau

2013 Fleetwood Storm

Location: Tampa, FL Stock #: WU42792 Pre-owned, 40 ft., 4 slides, diesel, 16,035 mi., floor plan 42WX Sugg. Retail: $272,757 / Request Price Included Benefits: Crown Club

Location: Tampa, FL Stock #: 1015431 New, 23 ft., diesel, floor plan TS MSRP: $119,164 / Request Price

Location: Tampa, FL Stock #: 1014492 New, 33 ft., 1 slide, diesel, floor plan 33Q MSRP: $106,007 / Request Price

2013 Winnebago Sightseer

2013 Entegra Cornerstone

2011 Coachmen Brookstone

Location: Tampa, FL Stock #: 1015136 New, 36 ft., 3 slides, gas, floor plan 33C MSRP: $149,067 / Request Price

Location: Tampa, FL Stock #: 1014345 New, 45 ft., 4 slides, diesel, floor plan 45K MSRP: $582,106 / Request Price Included Benefits: Crown Club

Location: Tampa, FL Stock #: U131960 Pre-owned, 36 ft., 3 slides, floor plan 360RL Sugg. Retail: $49,876 / Request Price

2013 Thor Palazzo

2013 Thor Tuscany

2013 Heartland Bighorn

Location: Tampa, FL Stock #: 1015010 New, 34 ft., 2 slides, diesel, floor plan 33.1 MSRP: $197,302 / Request Price

Location: Tampa, FL Stock: 1015551 New, 43 ft., 3 slides, diesel, floor plan 42WX MSRP: $356,310 / Request Price Included Benefits: Crown Club

Location: Tampa, FL Stock: 1015777 New, 35 ft., 3 slides, floor plan 3010RE MSRP: $70,879 / Request Price

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2010 Keystone Alpine

2013 CrossRoads Sunset Trail

2013 Dynamax Trilogy

Location: Tampa, FL Stock #: U133362 Pre-owned, 39 ft., 3 slides, floor plan 3640RL Sugg. Retail: $39,876 / Request Price

Location: Tampa, FL Stock #: 1015896 New, 35 ft., 3 slides, floor plan 32FR MSRP: $43,450 / Request Price

Location: Tampa, FL Stock: 1015673 New, 38 ft., 3 slides, floor plan 3650RE MSRP: $110,624 / Request Price Included Benefits: Crown Club

2013 Redwood

2007 Travel Supreme

2013 Coachmen Clipper

Location: Tampa, FL Stock #: 1015951 New, 39 ft., 3 slides, floor plan 36RL MSRP: $114,532/ Request Price Included Benefits: Crown Club

Location: Tampa, FL Stock #: U132141 Pre-owned, 38 ft., 4 slides, floor plan CL38RLQ1 Sugg. Retail: $47,450 / Request Price

Location: Tampa, FL Stock #: 1014753 New, 16 ft., floor plan 13K MSRP: $12,022 / Request Price

2011 Thor Windsport

2014 Winnebago Minnie Winnie

2014 DRV Mobile Suite

Location: Tampa, FL Stock #: U131860 Pre-owned, 32 ft., 2 slides, gas, 14,475 mi., floor plan 31D Sugg. Retail: $78,453 / Request Price

Location: Tampa, FL Stock #: 1016439 New, 33 ft., 1 slide, gas, floor plan 31K MSRP: $81,941 / Request Price

Location: Tampa, FL Stock #: 1015460 New, 41 ft., 4 slides, floor plan 41RESB4 MSRP: $147,670 / Request Price Included Benefits: Crown Club

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RV CLASSIFIED IN TAMPA, CALL 888.626.7800

• IN TUCSON, CALL 888.426.5481

2012 Thor Motor Coach Chateau

2012 Forest River XLR Nitro

2012 Thor Motor Coach Windsport

Location: Tucson, AZ Stock #: 1012663 New, 30 ft., 1 slide, gas, floor plan 28Z MSRP: $89,144 / Request Price5

Location: Tucson, AZ Stock #: 1012597 New, 36 ft., 1 slide, floor plan 30MRQ MSRP: $50,468 / Request Price

Location: Tucson, AZ Stock #: 1012659 New, 33 ft., 2 slides, gas, floor plan 32D MSRP: $118,245 / Request Price

2012 Thor Motor Coach Chateau Citation

2012 CrossRoads Cruiser

2012 Keystone Outback

Location: Tucson, AZ Stock #:1013537 New, 30 ft., 2 slides, floor plan CF30KRX MSRP: $45,931 / Request Price

Location: Tucson, AZ Stock #: 1013959 New, 32 ft., 1 slide, floor plan 279RB MSRP: $34,800 / Request Price

2013 Forest River Surveyor Select

2013 Forest River Berkshire

Location: Tucson, AZ Stock: 1013938 New, 36 ft., 2 slides, floor plan SV-305 MSRP: $45,241 / Request Price

Location: Tucson, AZ Stock: 1014772 New, 40 ft., 4 slides, diesel, floor plan 390FL MSRP: $251,634 / Request Price

Location: Tucson, AZ Stock #: 1012671 New, 31 ft., 3 slides, gas, floor plan 29BG MSRP: $112,356 / Request Price

2012 Forest River Cedar Creek Cottage Location: Tucson, AZ Stock #: 1013718 New, 40 ft., 3 slides, floor plan 40CFE MSRP: $66,780 / Request Price

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betterRVing.com | Spring 2013


2013 Keystone Premier

2013 Prime Time Crusader

2013 Prime Time Sanibel

Location: Tucson, AZ Stock #: 1014561 New, 23 ft., 1 slide, floor plan 19FBPR MSRP: $27,345 / Request Price

Location: Tucson, AZ Stock #: 1014580 New, 32 ft., 3 slides, floor plan 290RLT MSRP: $47,451 / Request Price

Location: Tucson, AZ Stock: 1014590 New, 39 ft., 4 slides, floor plan 3400 MSRP: $86,938 / Request Price

2013 Prime Time Lacrosse

2013 Forest River Cedar Creek

Location: Tucson, AZ Stock #: 1014578 New, 35 ft., 2 slides, floor plan 318BHS MSRP: $42,123 / Request Price

Location: Tucson, AZ Stock #: 1014368 New, 39 ft., 3 slides, floor plan 36RE MSRP: $87,489 / Request Price

2013 Prime Time Tracer Executive Series

2012 Pleasure-Way Excel

2012 Pleasure-Way Lexor

2013 Holiday Rambler Ambassador

Location: Tucson, AZ Stock #: 1015028 New, 20 ft., gas, floor plan TS MSRP: $99,656 / Request Price

Location: Tucson, AZ Stock #: 1015030 New, 20 ft., gas, floor plan TS MSRP: $91,784 / Request Price

Location: Tucson, AZ Stock #: 1014503 New, 41 ft., 3 slides, diesel, floor plan 40DFT MSRP: $301,084 / Request Price Included Benefits: Lazydays Gold

Location: Tucson, AZ Stock #: 1014585 New, 34 ft., 2 slides, floor plan 3150BHD MSRP: $38,252 / Request Price

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Heartland owners are proud of their RVs and enjoy the company of fellow Heartland a l t RV owners. Share in the good times with others like r a e you, make new friends and create a lifetime of lasting memories h w. together. Chapters of the Heartland Owners Club are forming all over the w w United States and Canada. Owners are meeting for rallies several times each year at great destinations sharing experiences, making friends and making memories. Get started at Lazydays, a premier dealer of Heartland products.

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www.heartlandrvs.com


PARTNER SPOTLIGHT

Chris Pearson Lot Photographer, Lazydays Tampa How long have you worked at Lazydays?

I started with Lazydays in January 2011 as a lot porter; my role was to bring out coaches when customers purchased them. It was only a temporary position. When one of Lazydays’ photographers left, I asked the marketing department if I could be their new photographer. I knew all the procedures, and I was confident I could learn the ins and outs of editing photographs and uploading them to the website. What does the lot photographer do? I’m part of a two-person photography team. C.J. Fowler is the other photographer and he is teaching me a lot. In the morning, I check the photos from the previous day to make sure they uploaded properly to the Lazydays website. By 8:30 a.m., we go out and photograph coaches. Whether new or pre-owned, every coach is photographed. I’m licensed to operate a forklift, so if it’s a travel trailer or fifth wheel, I will pick it up with the forklift and bring it to the photo site. I make sure our sales team has a wide range of photographs available so they can help their customers choose the right coach. What do you do to provide excellent customer service at Lazydays? Because we are always

outside on the lot, I interact with customers a lot; it may be something as simple as opening a coach for someone or providing a ride to the office. It’s funny; I never had a job before where I’d wake up ready to go to work. At Lazydays, it’s like, “Cool, I’m ready to make a customer smile today.” I also like to make co-workers laugh, by always cracking jokes. You have three young daughters. Any chance you and your wife will have a boy? My oldest

daughter just turned seven. In April, my middle child will be three, and my youngest will turn one. Now that I have three children, I think that might be enough. But nothing is out of the picture. Perhaps the good Lord will bless us with another child. Is there anything about you that might surprise customers and co-workers? When I was

nine years old, I was in a TV commercial that played during the Super Bowl. I also played tackle football when I was in the Marine Corps. Not many people even know the Marines have a football team. Other than that, I’m a pretty open person. ■

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TECHNICALLY SPEAKING Join us on Facebook

Is it more economical to run my fridge on electricity or LP? Campgrounds usually include electricity in the

My RV has not been moved in over a year. What should I do to prepare for a trip? It is very important to take your

campsite cost, which would make it much cheaper to use electricity than LP. When running your fridge on LP, consumption will be about two or three gallons per month, depending on outside temperatures, how often and how long the door is left open, and other activities that could cause interior temperatures to fluctuate.

coach to an RV service center and schedule a pre-delivery inspection (PDI). The PDI is performed by a certified technician, who will confirm all of the interior systems are functioning properly and the chassis is roadworthy. But before you drive your RV to the service center, be sure to check all of the engine fluids, belts and hoses as well as the tire pressure and tire condition to ensure you'll arrive there safely.

What is the best antenna to mount on our RV to pick up the new digital signals without subscribing to costly satellite companies? I like the Winegard® Sensar amplified

antenna, which has been used for years on RVs. Add the Sensar Wingman® and Sensar Pro TV signal meter for optimum digital reception. How can we use our Class A motorhome for a cold climate in the winter? Do we have to continually winterize and summerize every trip? Is a non-winterized RV safe to use in winter with the heat on? Will tanks or lines freeze? Do we need heated storage space? Does this even exist? Most basement-designed Class A motorhomes

have a furnace duct that heats the basement area, which includes water tanks. It is important that auxiliary heating systems are not used when in cold climates, as this will prevent the furnace from cycling frequently enough to heat the basement. Tank heaters can also be installed. Some manufacturers design RVs for use in colder climates, and may offer an optional winter package. When your coach is not in use, you will need to keep it heated or winterize after every use. If your RV has a water heater bypass and a pump bypass, winterizing will be much easier to perform after each use — and probably cheaper than heating when not in use. Something as simple as leaving the storage compartment lights on will help heat storage areas and prevent freezing. Of course, this all depends on how cold the temperatures are.

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What are the pros and cons between a Class C and a fifth wheel? There are so many types and models of RVs

available because of all the different ways we use them: full-time living or recreational getaways; two people or large families; short weekend jaunts or extended seasonal stays. Only you can decide what will fit your needs the best. Are you planning to travel for long periods of time? Do you like driving in a truck? Do you already have a truck suitable for towing a fifth wheel? I personally prefer to travel in a motorized coach, but I also like the roominess of a fifth wheel after arriving. And, remember — towing a car is a must when traveling in a motorized RV. Whatever you decide, happy shopping!■

Post your questions at facebook.com/betterRVing.


? r o f g in it a w u o y W h at a r e

www.keystonerv.com

There has never been a better time to enjoy the outdoors in your new Keystone toy hauler, travel trailer or fifth wheel. Lazydays offers you a full inventory of the #1 selling Keystone RVs. Everything from the amazing Raptor toy hauler to the luxurious Montana fifth wheel. Plus easy to tow models like the Passport Ultra Lite and family friendly Sprinter travel trailer and fifth wheel.

Time’s a wasting. Visit L azydays now for a ne w Ke ystone RV and ge t your we e ke nd on.

SCAN HERE Scan this tag with your smart phone and learn more about which Keystone RV brand will start your weekend.

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5000-0413

YOUR RV ISN’T A CAR. DON’T INSURE IT LIKE ONE. Progressive covers your RV in ways auto policies don’t. So if you ever get in an accident and need to leave your RV at the shop for repairs, we’ll cover the cost of your hotel. Keeping family trips on the road, now that’s Progressive.

866-317-4014 /

LAZYDAYS.COM/INSURANCE

Progressive Casualty Ins. Co. & affiliates. Emergency Expense coverage is subject to policy terms. 11A00896.D01 (03/12)


Spring 2013 betterRVing