Issuu on Google+

BRIMFIELD, Mass., June 27, 2011 – When a tornado struck Brimfield on June 1st, it wiped out Village Green Family Campground, a 165-site campground that has been a summer home away from home for hundreds of

Massachusetts residents for nearly 40 years. But with the help of scores of volunteers and donations of food, supplies, money and labor from the local community as well as

campground operators from Massachusetts and across the country, Meg and Les Twarowski are rebuilding their familyowned campground – and their lives. Continued Page 2


Continued from Page 1 “We’re hoping to reopen at least half of the park by the end of October,” said Meg Twarowski, adding that even longtime campers are helping the park clear out the fallen trees and other rubble left by the tornado. The tornado destroyed many RVs that had been parked in the campground as well as several campground buildings, including its 3,000-square foot pavilion, which had been a focal point for special activities and events throughout the camping season. “All of our trees are gone,” Twarowski said. “Our playground is gone.” The camp store has also been damaged so severely that it may be condemned. The park is also covered with fallen trees and other debris, but with the help of volunteers, a cleanup effort is well underway. “We’ve been cutting the trees down that were in the roadway so we have passage through the park now. We’re also removing trees from the trailers so that people can recover the

An aerial view of the tornado devastation at Village Green Family Campground things they need,” adjusters are frequently She added that as of late Twarowski said, adding that coming to the park to June, MACO had received a park operator from assess the damage to checks and pledges from Connecticut sent his two privately owned RVs that about half of the sons to her park, armed were there when the association’s 75 with chainsaws to help with tornado hit. Massachusetts members as the cleanup effort. well as checks from park The Massachusetts operators, associations, and Community members have Association of Campground businesses in other states. also been donating food, Owners (MACO) has rallied bottled water, Gatorade, its members to help the MACO has designated July work gloves, rakes, Twarowskis rebuild their 4th weekend as “Support shovels, brooms and other park, and park operators Village Green Family supplies. from across the country are Campground” Weekend! sending donations to help Participating parks are As of late June, about 30 with the reconstruction pledging $1.00 of every site percent of the cleanup had effort, said Marcia Galvin, in their park to be donated been completed, Twarowski the association’s Executive to the relief fund to help said, adding that insurance Director. rebuild Village Green. Continued


Continued If you would like to donate food, equipment or supplies to help with campground reconstruction effort, please contact Meg Twarowski at (413) 2453504 or email her at vilgrncamp@aol.com. Campground operators can also send donations directly to Marcia Galvin of the Massachusetts Association of Campground Owners at MACO P.O. Box 47 Foxboro, MA 02035. All checks should be payable to Village Green Campground and “relief fund� printed in the memo. Devastation on the ground from the tornado


June 22, 2011. McLean, VA… Packed with information about affiliated parks all over the country, the new RVing & Campging at the Best Parks in America directory is sure to be a great resource for all campers and Rvers. “We are really excited about this upgraded version of the Best Parks Directory,” said Best Parks in America President David Gorin. “It features 73 wonderful parks in 28 states and in Canada. I think this new directory does an excellent job of highlighting all that the Best Parks in America have to offer.” The new book has a bright, colorful new cover with an enhanced design and a more eye-catching layout. The new look of the book is further enhanced with photos for each listed park, advertising that provides the consumer with more

David Gorin

information on which to make decisions as they travel as well as RVing and camping recipes tied to each local area. In addition to the significant information about each park, Best Parks in America has teamed with the RV Cooking Show to provide regional RVing and camping recipes throughout the book. These short pieces “bring to RVers the wonderful world of specialty recipes from around the country.” At times coupled with the city of their origin, the quick and easy recipes now sprinkled throughout the book will help add a special flavor to RV and camping trips. Boasting dishes such as “Tucson’s Greatest Guacamole” and “Pressed Cuban Sandwiches” the simple yet delicious nature of these recipes is impossible to ignore. “We are very happy to be able to include recipes from the RV Cooking Show in this year’s directory,” states Gorin. “It lets the campers and RVers know that we’re not just interested in getting them to stay at our parks, but we want to help them enjoy their stay in any way we can. Especially when it comes to eating quality food.” Complimentary copies of the new directory can be

ordered from www.Bestparksinamerica.com

or can be picked up at any affiliated RV park or campground. Best Parks in America is a national marketing network promoting and marketing America’s highly rated RV parks and campgrounds. Currently with 73 parks in 28 states,

Best Parks is increasingly building consumer top of mind awareness of the quickest and easiest way to find the Best Parks in America. For information, please contact Best Parks in America at 703.448.6863 or info@bestparksinamerica.com.


BILLINGS, MT (June 27, 2011) – Participants in Kampgrounds of America’s popular KOA Work Kamper Program will be heading to the Stockton/Delta KOA Campground in Lodi, California Friday, September 30 for a Work Kamper Boot Camp. The well-attended training event gives KOA Work Kampers an opportunity to hone their skills regarding KOA campground operation practices, as well become familiar with KOA’s proprietary KOA KampSight computerized campground reservation system. The KOA Work Kamper Program has grown rapidly in the past five years to now include approximately 1,800 trained teams. Work Kampers are able to search for available jobs at KOA campgrounds

throughout North America via the www.WorkAtKOA.com website. The site allows Work Kampers to post their resumes and search all jobs posted by KOA owners. All KOA Work Kampers are invited to attend the fullday, free Boot Camp September 30. To become a KOA Work Kamper, visit www.WorkAtKOA.com. The cost of the program is $35 per year, and allows Work Kampers full access to resume management, job postings, online training webinars and on-site training such as Boot Camps. For more information on the KOA Work Kamper Program, call 800-5620899 or email welovekamping@koa.net.


If you haven’t heard of Groupon, you must be living on an uninhabited island somewhere. But just in case, here is a brief description of how it is supposed to work. How It Works The park agrees to a steep discount (50% or better) on a stay. There is very limited ability to blackout dates for the use of the coupon. What is agreed on is the number of coupons that need to be purchased in order for the coupons to be distributed. Of the amount collected, Groupon typically retains 50% and sends the balance on to the park. If we look at some quick math, that would mean that the agreement is to give a 50% discount on a park stay if 500 or more people purchase the deal. If the normal nightly rate is $40, the discount would be for $20 per night. (Let’s assume for this example that you are only going to discount a two night stay.) With 500 coupons sold, the total income would be $20,000. Of the $20,000 Groupon would retain 50% or $10,000 and the park would receive $10,000. So far everything sounds great doesn’t it? What Does This Mean To The Park? Now let’s look at the other side of the problem. Since the assumption is a two night stay, in reality we are

talking about 1,000 site nights for $10,000 or $10 per site per night. I don’t know of any park where the cost per site night is $10 or less, so a Groupon deal can be considered a “Loss Leader.” Meaning that the cost is greater than the income but the hope is that the person redeeming the Groupon deal will come back and stay at the normal rate. There is an argument that there are residual sales due to the person staying in the park. Sales at the gift shop, the grocery area and/or the RV supplies area will increase. My question is will those sales increase enough to offset the loss? The second part of the problem lies in the fact that you are going to receive a large amount of money ($10,000 in our example) spread out over 1/3 in about 5 days, 1/3 in 30 days and the final 1/3 in 60 days. The coupons, however, usually have a one year shelf life, so they can be used at any time through the year. In other words, you are going to collect for deeply discounted business today but you are going to be paying for it for quite a long time. What Is The Impact? A couple of items to take a hard look at before deciding to do a Groupon deal can have a huge

impact to your overall business: 1.) How many of your existing customers are going to buy the Groupon deal? The real reason to go with Groupon is to attract new business, but if they are existing customers there isn’t going to be any gain. This is a statistic that is going to be very hard to track as Groupon doesn’t provide this type of analysis. 2.) How often will those new customers come back? If the Groupon customer doesn’t return the park has basically given away two nights with no chance of recovering any losses. My experience and my intuition continues to tell me that people who shop for the latest deal do not become loyal customers who return to purchase at the regular price. Is It Worth It? So now we get to the real question. Is a Groupon, Google Offers or any of the other “Deal of the Day”

sites worth going to in order to attract new customers? The answer is…Depends. For me the answer is always “No, Thank You.” I feel the same way about the 50% clubs that offer to bring more people in if you will give those customers a 50% discount. Here are my reasons against these types of “deals.” 1.) If you have priced your sites right, giving deep discounts is the equivalent to telling the guest, “The nightly rate is $40 but I realize that is way too much for you to spend so I will give you the site for $20 tonight.” That sounds a whole lot different than just saying “Yes, we honor XYZ discount club” now doesn’t it. But the bottom line remains the same. 2.) Do the guests who receive the deep discount come back and pay full price? Why should they? After all they belong to XYZ club or they wait for the next “Daily Deal” and Continued


Continued get a discounted price. There is no incentive to become a regular customer. In fact, the incentive is to find that next “Daily Deal” and go there. 3.) If you agree to run the deal, are you going to be able to cover the losses? Unless you are way out of whack on your rates, you will incur losses. You are going to receive a large infusion of cash but you are going to need it later when the deal is redeemed. How To Generate New Business Now, here are my suggestions for increasing your base without the Daily Deal sites: 1.) Create a guest loyalty program where you reward your current guests for bringing in new business. Give them a one night discount for every 5 new guests they bring in. Now you are giving your existing guests reasons to brag about your park. 2.) Consider running a Facebook ad. These ads are based on a pay per click basis (PPC) but you can define your target to a very explicit audience. Again, the deal would be a onetime use and would be a reasonable discount. (By the way, I have always considered a reasonable discount to be between 10% and 15%, with larger discounts being given under very special circumstances.

November 6-9, 2011 (Expo on Nov. 9) South Point Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas, NV Contact: (406) 248-7444 November 11-12, 2011 On the Internet Contact: (877) 901-3976 November 14-17, 2011 Embassy Suites, Covington, KY Contact: (513) 831-2100 Pamela Wright 3.) Spend the money you would have given Groupon on beefing up your website to attract more customers, add a social media program to your efforts and look at paying for some SEO efforts for your website. I’m looking forward to hearing what has worked for you. Pamela and her company, FocusedWords, are dedicated to helping you promote and market your RV Park/ Resort/ Campground to RVer’s everywhere. Be sure to follow her on Twitter: @RVStops and @FocusedWords. Check out her blog at www.FocusedWords.com/blog.

Pamela has redesigned her website, FocusedWords.com, to provide a place for you to tell Rally groups what your park has to offer for their next rally. Be sure to fill out your park form with your facilities information.

November 28 – December 2, 2011 Westin Savannah Harbor Golf Resort Spa & Savannah International Trade & Convention Center, Savannah, GA Contact: (303) 681-0401


If a drunk driver crashed his speeding rental car into your house and killed your spouse, you would be outraged if law enforcers took bribes and refused to give the driver a blood test. If the judge then gave the killer a small fine and ordered you to pay the fine and pay for all the damages, you'd be outraged. If the government then handed the drunkdriver keys to a bigger faster rental car, handed the drunk driver an even bigger bottle of whiskey, and then gave you the rental bill; you'd storm Washington, blizzard elected officials with protests and organize friends and associates to vote these malefactors, the elected officials that betrayed your trust, out of office. Yet, we've remained largely silent in the face of the same sort of behavior by Wall Street and Washington. Bonus-seeking bankers crashed into Main Street's economy and ran control frauds within banks that would have failed without taxpayer bailouts. Bureaucrats and elected officials bailed them out without demanding consequences. Bankers are revving their engines again in credit derivatives, currency derivatives, and commodities trades. "Financial reform" addresses none of the latter problems.

Arianna Huffington's Third World America: How Our Politicians are Abandoning the Middle Class and Betraying the American Dream explains that the $787 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the bank bailout package also known as TARP, allotted only $72 billion to infrastructure projects. Another feature of the bill was to have banks agree to lend money to medium and small sized businesses to stimulate the economy. That didn't happen and official unemployment numbers remain above 9%, while unofficial figures for underemployed Americans soar above 20%. The number one stimulus for any economy is not consumer spending, although that is a powerful secondary effect. The number one stimulus is capital spending, investment in the production of real goods and consumables. As Third World America explains: "There were three flaws with the old economy that has crashed. It favored consumption over production, debt over small savings, and environmental damage over environmental renewal." Our ongoing bank bailouts included the mispricing of around $4 trillion of toxic assets that the banks cannot afford to honestly price, since bank capital

would be wiped out sparking another global financial meltdown. We continue to provide cheap taxpayer funding through the Fed. New accounting rules allow banks to coverup the low price of impaired assets, and government debt guarantees provide ongoing subsidies to banks that have a value of trillions of dollars. Ground Zero for America's Debt Crisis Beyond the banks, we have fiscal mismanagement and corruption that plagues middle class taxpayers. I happen to live in Illinois, the best example of this in the nation. Cook County encompasses Chicago and some of its surrounding suburbs. This week, the Cook County Treasurer discovered "stunning" debt. This debt isn't new, but apparently our officials are now properly terrified. Our total debt for the municipality, education, county, sanitary, park, fire, township, library and special services is now $108 billion. That means the debt per person in Chicago exceeds $23,700 (corrected assuming 2.67 average per household) or more than $63,500 per household, and that is just local debt. The other problem is that the Illinois economy isn't growing. Many of those

Janet Tavakoli households have no income coming in other than government subsidies, and some have no income at all. Unofficial unemployment numbers top 20%. State of Illinois taxes increased from 3% to 5%, an increase of around 67%. Taxes on real estate, utilities, sales, and more are expected to skyrocket. Businesses like the Chicago Mercantile Exchange are being courted by low income tax states (at least the income taxes are currently low) like Florida. We're not doing better on a national level. Americans owe almost $166,600 (corrected assuming 2.69 average per household) per household or around $45,000 per person (Greek citizens owe $44,000 per person). That's on top of our local debt. David Walker, the former U.S. comptroller general, says it's even worse than that. When he takes into Continued


Continued account future obligations for Medicare, Social Security, Federal debt, Military retirement, Civil servant retirement, and more, we owe $546,663 per household. That doesn't even include your local debt -- it may not be as bad as if you lived in Illinois, but it's substantial nonetheless -- and personal debt including mortgages and consumer debt that average more than $120,000 per household. We're told we are a great country and we can "grow our way out of it." Exactly how does that occur, when jobs are going overseas,

taxes for the wealthiest in our country are uncollectible after exploiting tax breaks, and programs for investment in infrastructure and production are virtually nonexistent? America's biggest problem by far is that capital spending in new production facilities that create jobs and real products never occurred, not even after trillions of dollars were thrown at banks in the global financial system. By Janet Tavakoli, President of Tavakoli Structured FinanceChicago

WASHINGTON, D.C – New research released today by the nonprofit National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) provides the first-ever broad look at how America’s national parks are faring in the face of pollution, invasive species, climate change, energy development, adjacent land development and chronic funding shortfalls, according to an NPCA news release.

A decade in the making, NPCA says the report – The State of America’s National Parks – represents the most comprehensive overview yet performed on resource conditions in America’s national parks. To read the full Report: To view a full copy of the report, visit: www.npca.org/cpr/sanp/.


BILLINGS, MT (June 27, 2011) – Bad weather throughout North America put a damper on many camping family’s plans this spring, but camping on the July 4th holiday weekend is a tradition that can’t be denied for many families. Kampgrounds of America Inc. reports that, as of Sunday, June 26, more than 116,000 camping nights had been reserved for the upcoming July 4th holiday weekend at the 475 KOA campgrounds in the U.S. and Canada. While that number is down slightly from record July 4th weekend reservations in 2010, most of the shortfall can be attributed to spring weather woes across the country. "We may not set a new record this July 4th weekend," said KOA CEO Jim Rogers, "but it will still be one of the top years in our 49-year history." “We had a very wet spring to start the camping season,” said Rogers. “We know that adverse weather historically causes campers to delay their plans. They have a tendency to ‘wait and see’ what the weather will do.” While July 4th weekend reservations are running

slightly behind this time last year, an influx of reservations in the past week helped to close the gap. “While we still have great tent sites, RV sites, cabins and lodges available for this weekend, I suspect they will go quickly in the next few days and we’ll have another very successful holiday weekend,” Rogers said. “It’s July 4th, and there is nothing like camping on the July 4th weekend for a fun, affordable family minivacation.” Many KOAs now have luxury Kamping Lodges, featuring full bathrooms and kitchens, as well as flat screen televisions and other amenities. “That may not sound like traditional camping to many enthusiasts, but Lodges are a way to offer a campground experience to someone who might desire just a little more comfort,” Rogers said. “At KOA, it really is camping any way you like it.” Several KOA campgrounds have special events such as site decorating contests and parades during the July 4th weekend. Check your favorite KOA’s website at www.KOA.com for details or to make your reservations.


What is the requirement regarding overtime pay for my company when there is a paid holiday on Monday and employees are required to work 8 hours per day Tuesday through Friday, plus Saturday? Is Monday counted as a day worked for the purpose of calculating the 40 hours and thus Saturday hours should be paid at the overtime rate? No. In this example, Saturday is not an overtime day. Premium pay is based on hours worked. Your employees did not work on Monday, but simply observed a holiday by having the day off with pay. Hours Worked Under the basic definition set out in the Industrial Welfare Commission orders, “hours worked” means the time during which an employee is subject to the control of any employer, and includes all the time the employee is suffered or permitted to work, whether or not required to do so. Where it is determined that the employee’s time is subject to the control of the employer, the time constitutes “hours worked.” An employee off on holiday with or without pay is not working and the time does not count toward premium pay. This also holds true for

an employee not working, but receiving vacation pay, paid time off or paid sick leave. Overtime Pay Section 3 of the Wage Orders contains the overtime provisions. In brief, what is required is one-and-a-half times the

regular rate of pay for “hours worked” in excess of 8 hours per day. There are other requirements, such as time-and-a-half over 40, double-time over 12 hours in a day and the seventh day rule. The “hours worked” definition and the overtime requirements in the Wage

Orders confirm that holiday pay is not “hours worked.” Thus, the overtime calculation does not include the holiday hours. Reproduced from CalARVC News- Provided by the California Chamber of Commerce - Labor Law Helpline

QUEENSLAND caravanner Bronwyn McMillin and her pooch Chilli have welcomed BIG4's change of heart over its longstanding no-dogs policy.

purple "as a way of breaking the ice when we meet people" – at a Jayco Owners (SE Queensland) Club weekend rally in Caboolture, north of Brisbane.

"There's no doubt BIG4 has been losing business with its outdated approach to pets and I am very pleased they are finally waking up to the times," Bronwyn said.

Until now, Bronwyn, husband David and their six-year-old Mexican Chihuahua-Silky cross – along with thousands of other travellers with pets – have been barred from Australia's largest network of caravan and holiday parks.

"He just loves being on the road and travels everywhere with us," she explained. "But we have never been able to stay at a BIG4 park and sometimes free camp instead.

BIG4 Holiday Parks chief executive Ray Schleibs said the decision on pets had not been taken lightly. "It has been made due to recognition that society's attitude towards travelling with dogs has changed," he explained. "More dogs are traveling and holidaying with couples and families, with many seeing dogs as substitute children or loyal companions.

But all that will change next month when, after what the chain called "detailed research and analysis", selected BIG4 parks will be allowed to throw down the welcome mat following a 32-year ban. Caravanning News spoke to Bronwyn – who regularly dyes Chilli's tail bright

"We have caravanned all over Queensland and out west and Chilli, who has been with us since he was just seven weeks old, has never been a problem." The McMillins, from Heathwood in Brisbane, travel in a 21ft Jayco Sterling Outback and said they would now consider staying at a BIG4 park.

"As industry leaders, BIG4 is committed to evolving and adapting to suit the needs of all travelers by offering our member parks the option of welcoming dogs."


June 23, 2011, Myrtle Beach, S.C. — Ocean Lakes Family Campground (www.OceanLakes.com), a subsidiary of The Jackson Companies, now has the first electric vehicle (EV) charging stations in the coastal Carolinas. Ocean Lakes built two stations as part of its award-winning iCare Program aimed at reducing the environmental impact of its campground and guests. The Level 2 EV Charging Stations are open to the general public, as well as Ocean Lakes guests. Ocean Lakes is now one of only two locations east of I95 in South Carolina that has EV stations available for public use. According to the U. S. Department of Energy (www.afdc.energy.gov/afdc/ progs/ind_state.php/SC/EL EC), there are only 30 EV

stations in S.C. The closest to the coast is Monks Corner which is 77 miles southwest of Ocean Lakes or Lumberton, N.C. which is 95 miles north of Ocean Lakes. “Building the EV Charging Stations was an easy decision because it fits right in with our iCare Program,” said Barb Krumm, Director of Marketing and Public Relations. “The idea for the EV stations was inspired by an article our Ocean Lakes IT consultant forwarded to our management. At the same time, the National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (ARVC) requested information from campgrounds that were catering to EVs. That piqued our interest and we set about researching EV technology.” Ocean Lakes has all 893

campsites equipped with 50 amp/240 volt service to operate camper appliances and air conditioners. Upon learning that the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) (www.sae.org) defines 240 Volt AC charging as “Level 2” charging, management decided that they could affordably provide a site for

someone to park on to charge an eco-friendly vehicle. “It's a win-win to help someone who is trying to help our environment,” Krumm said. “Research also helped us determine that accommodating East Continued


Continued Coast travelers with this new eco-friendly technology made good sense. We felt that establishing a charging station location at an oceanfront destination about 75 miles from I-95 would be good business as well.” Ocean Lakes Family Campground invested about $3,000 in the two EV charging stations. Expenses included the asphalt parking pads, the outlet stations, the adapter cord and signage. To use the EV charging stations, EV drivers simply need to visit the Ocean Lakes main office and obtain a $5 visitor pass to the EV station. There is no additional cost to charge. Ocean Lakes management does not really know what kind of demand to expect. “It’s not about making money and we really don't expect to generate much income from the stations,” Krumm said. “It’s more about stepping up to fill a need and continuing our efforts to encourage good stewardship of our environment. It also gives us the opportunity to show off our campground to potential and future customers. It takes about four hours to charge a vehicle, so we invite EV guests to enjoy the campground amenities. They can rent an electric golf car, tour the campground, grab a bite to

eat on-site, and relax on the beach if they wish.” With the addition of the EV stations to its iCare program, Ocean Lakes now covers a range of transportation alternatives to meet consumer needs and promote smart “green” options. Rentals of golf cars, which have proven to be the most popular electric transportation inside Ocean Lakes, are a strong revenue source, as well as an important amenity for guests. Recently, Ocean Lakes partnered with Tomberlin (www.tomberlin.net/#/electri c-vehicles) which manufactures LSVs (low speed vehicles). Tomberlin's product line also includes the Vanish, an electric vehicle for allterrain purposes like hunting. LSVs have some advantages by law; they can be driven on roads 35 MPH or less and unlike the golf car, can be driven at night. These vehicles can run up to 25 MPH and have a range of 25-30 miles per charge. Ocean Lakes Family Campground’s iCare Program continues to expand. Guests and teammates have recycled more than 250,000 pounds of solid waste, averaging about 2 tons per week. Ocean Lakes’ landscaping department's composter produces mulch and fertilizer for the flower beds. Solar-heated water is being tested at one of the bathhouses to determine how much water and gas it saves.

(Green Bay, WI) – Cornerstone Business Services, Inc. is pleased to announce that Mark Weber has acquired Hi-Pines Campground. The transaction was handled by Scott Schoeneman and Chris Cumicek of Cornerstone Business Services, Inc. The 70 acre campground is located along Highway 45 about one mile north of Eagle River, Wisconsin. “It’s very exciting to acquire this unique setting that is close to Eagle River and everything it has to offer, yet is secluded enough for our guests to get away from it all,” Weber said. “We will strive to continue to provide a great camping experience for all of our visitors.” Weber has purchased seven resorts in the past

ten years and was very impressed with the professionalism of the Cornerstone team during the transaction process. Cornerstone acted as advisor to Hi-Pines by preparing offering materials and contacting potential acquirers, evaluating competing indications of interest and assisting in negotiations. Cornerstone Business Services, Inc. is a full service mergers and acquisitions firm selling businesses with values greater than $1 million in the manufacturing, service, distribution and petroleum industries. Cornerstone’s corporate office is located in Green Bay, WI, and serves clients throughout the Midwest. For more information, visit http://www.cornerstonebusiness.com.


June 24, 2011. McLean, VA….. As if there already weren’t enough benefits to becoming a Best Guest in America, Best Parks in America has just added another incentive. With a very simple and complimentary enrollment, Best Guests in America provides campers and RVers with a chance to receive special courtesies and services when visiting a Best Park. Now new members of Best Guests in America have a special chance to win big! With the second annual Summer Camping Giveaway, Best Parks in America is offering a free week of camping at any Best Parks in America resort. Starting June 1st and continuing through August 30th, Best Parks will hold a bi-weekly drawing to see who will be the lucky campers or RVers to receive this special prize. “We’re extremely excited to be able to offer this opportunity for a free week of camping to our Best Guest members,” says Best Parks in America President David Gorin. “Our guests are the best, and it’s time we showed

them that with this appealing offer.” To become eligible for to win your free week of RVing or camping, simply join Best Guests in America between by August 30th to have your name entered in the drawing. Already existing members of Best Guests are automatically entered. Your name is included in each drawing throughout the summer, so even if you don’t win the first week there are many opportunities later in the summer for you to score this awesome deal! The sooner you join Best Guests of America, the more chances you’ll have to win. To join Best Guests and be automatically entered in the drawing, complete the enrollment form on the following webpage: http://www.bestparksinameri ca.com/main/best_guest_sig nup. With Best Guests there are never any obligations and nothing new to buy….just a quick sign up to be a Best Guest and you’re eligible! It’s so easy, and by filling out one form you could win a free week of camping at any of Best Parks in America’s fabulous resorts!


By Larry The news on June 21st, 2011, includes a report from the United Nations about global non communicable disease. According to the report, two thirds of the world’s deaths are from non communicable diseases such as cancer, lung disease and heart disease. The health costs for treating these diseases is in the many billions of dollars each year and rising. Non communicable diseases are for the most part diseases we get from bad air, bad water, bad sanitation, contaminated fruits and vegetables, and disease-ridden earth such as that being left behind by the massive floods across the upper Midwest and Mississippi Valley regions. The environment of our planet is loaded with emissions of all sorts, the water is mostly polluted, and the ground where people live in masses is disease ridden. If we breathe, eat, drink or go barefoot we are all of us taking a big chance on contracting “non communicable diseases”. Historians tell us that history repeats for those who do not learn from history. In the present time the only thing changing is the number of people on earth. The horrible Black Death in Europe centuries ago and the cholera epidemic in Kentucky in the

early 1900’s were environmentally caused, just as the nuclear contamination sickened and killed people living near the nuclear contamination in Russian and Nagasaki. The difference between the Middle Ages and now is mostly that there are billions of people living on earth, far more than ever before. Forget about controversies over global warming and hothouse gases and climate change. Two billion people drink from unsafe water every day and thousands of children die each day as a result. They are not dying from global warming or climate change but from ill-managed environments. If you are among those who doubt the seriousness of environmental health hazards, just go ahead and walk through some poison ivy and take a nice long drink out of the nearest pond, lake or stream. Take some deep breaths of ozone on days when there is an ozone alert. Maybe let some tics and mosquitoes make themselves at home on your body. Sit in the summer sun without sun screen for a few hours. Then check how you are feeling.


OTSEGO COUNTY —The 23 state forest campgrounds which were being considered for closure will be spared, due in part to the success of the state’s “Recreation Passport” program. Nine months in, the program has met its “breakeven point” of $11 million in revenue, according to Harold Herta, resource management chief for the Parks & Recreation division of the Department of Natural Resources (DNR). At that revenue mark, the Recreation Passport program has surpassed the annual sticker/day pass program it replaced. Motorists can opt-in with their annual license plate renewal, paying an extra $10 for year-round access to Michigan’s state parks. Herta said participation is at 22 percent and is going up every month as more people visit, or plan on

visiting, state parks. In the old system, annual stickers were $24, with day passes costing $6. Revenue is being directed into reserved funds to pay for park infrastructure, fund local recreation grants and forest recreation — including helping pay for operations of Michigan’s state forest campgrounds. Because of this extra revenue, combined with some shifting of funds by the state legislature, the 23 state forest campgrounds that were facing closure this year will be kept open. “We’re projecting we will have enough money to cover their expenses,” Herta said, adding the Recreation Passport program is succeeding in benefiting “more than just state parks.” Closures had been anticipated because the Forest Recreation budget

has seen a 63 percent drop in the past three years and experienced a $314,000 drop in funding when it was severed from the General Fund. Two of the 23 campgrounds facing closure were in Otsego County: Pigeon Bridge campground on the Pigeon River and Sturgeon Valley Road east of Vanderbilt, and Round Lake campground in the southern portion of the

Pigeon River Country State Forest. Other nearby campgrounds facing closure were Black Lake Trail campground in Cheboygan County, Manistee River Bridge campground in Crawford County and Little Wolf Lake campground in Montmorency County. Each campground has between 10 and 24 sites for tents or small campers, and four have access to nearby trails. Article: www.petoskeynews.com


a larger portion of their budgets.

This old RV at Hatch, Utah has no plans to go anywhere There will be fewer people on roads, beaches and airports to crowd Independence Day travelers, according to the latest travel forecast from AAA. AAA is predicting a 2.5% decline in trips more than 50 miles from home during the July 4 travel period, which it defines as June 30July 4. AAA believes about 39 million Americans will travel during the holiday weekend. The predicted decline is a dramatic swing from the

YEMASSEE, S.C. -- Point South KOA in Yemassee, S.C., announced today it is giving away 20 nights in a KOA Lodge as part of a Beaufort, S.C. 300th anniversary celebration sponsored by the Beaufort SC Convention bureau.

same time last year, when AAA forecast a 17.1% increase in July 4 travel. Despite recent moderation in fuel prices, AAA attributes the change in travel plans to gas prices that are about $1 more per gallon more than a year ago. The organization says that, based on its survey conducted by IHS Global Insight, households with incomes of $50,000 or less will show the largest declines in holiday travel plans as fuel prices eat up

The campground is also offering a $300, three-night lodge package with a pizza and wine dinner special in conjunction with the promotion.

Last year, households with incomes less than $50,000 accounted for 41% of all July 4 holiday trips; this year, the percentage is expected to be 33%. Households with incomes of more than $100,000 take up the slack, rising 9 percentage points this year to account for 35% of Independence Day travel.

The shift to a higher proportion of well-off travelers is likely responsible for the reported plans to increase holiday travel spending by about 25% over last year, to a median $807. AAA’s survey said higher spending is expected across the travel industry sector and is not attributable solely to higher fuel costs.


MISSION, Texas -Chimney Park RV Resort is giving away up to $100,000 worth of free night's stays to senior citizens (55+ years) during its Seniors Stay Free(tm) promotion. Senior citizens are increasingly using Facebook. This promotion is notable because it is the first exclusive offer of it's kind on Facebook that focuses on seniors citizens. Senior citizens who visit the Chimney Park RV Resort fan page http://facebook.com/Chimn eyPark and click the “like” button, will receive a coupon for a free night's stay at the RV park.

Known as one of the “Friendliest and Most Beautiful RV parks in South Texas”, Chimney Park is also one of the most innovative. It was one of the first RV parks to provide free WiFi (wireless Internet access) to its guests and now is going one step further to attract internet savvy seniors. Wallena Haynes, park manager says “We began testing the campaign on April 15, and because of the success of the trial, have decided to expand the promotion. We've increased our budget to a total of

$100,000 worth of free night's stays to be given away.” There are no “blackout dates”, and free night stays

can even be redeemed on holidays such as the 4th of July, Labor Day, and Veteran's Day. Free night stays must be redeemed by Nov. 11, 2011.


A www.ksby.com report: An Oceano RV park is being sold to an Arizona developer, now many longterm residents are being told they have to go.

I have kids," said Augustine. What angers many living at Ocean Breeze, is the lack of communication.

It's happening at the Ocean Breeze RV Park in the 300 block of Pier Avenue.

They say neither Pismo Plus or the current owner has notified those living there of the impending sale.

The developer, Pismo Plus, LLC said it plans to upgrade the park and open it up to vacationers. But, many people living there are angry they were never notified. "We don't have any place to go, this right here is our last resource," said Jerry Augustine. He's been living at the Ocean Breeze RV Park for three years. He has two kids, recently had a stroke, and lives on a fixed income. His rental agreement is up at the end of July. "I pray each day, each day," he said. Jerry is one of dozens of people who will not be able to stay. Now, they say they're desperate to find somewhere to live, quickly. Some only have a matter of weeks. Ocean Breeze grants rental agreements for a maximum period of six months. Many residents have been renewing those agreements for years. When they went to renew the latest time, they were told they have to live somewhere else. "It's hard, it's hard, because

"I've been given no notification other than word of mouth," said Michael Pard. He needs to be out by mid July. "That's all we're asking for, just a little bit of notice to give us a chance," said Kathy Lindsay. She's been living at Ocean Breeze for 13 years. She needs to be out by mid July. Many residents live on fixed incomes or are disabled. They say finding a place to live at the height of the season, with an old trailer... is next to impossible. "There is no option. There is absolutely no option," said one longterm resident. The owner would not return calls or answer her door, but we did speak with a representative for Pismo Plus. Ron Edmondson moved into Ocean Breeze late last week to oversee the transition. "We plan to honor all of

our legal agreements with them. We're not asking anyone to leave, we're not evicting anyone," he said. They're simply not renewing any rental agreements. Right now, plans for the new park include space for short-term vacationers, instead of long-term residents. He says Pismo Plus plans to put thousands into upgrading the RV park,

which is in serious need of repair. He said Pismo wanted to wait to notify residents, until the sale was final. "There hasn't been any time for advanced notification," said Edmondson. "We hope we'll have a very nice facility for Oceano when it's all finished." Article: www.ksby.com

ARVC is happy to announce we now post ARVC member propane pricing on a weekly basis for Amerigas, and we post monthly pricing for Ferrellgas and Suburban Propane.

arvc.org, please follow these 6 simples steps:

You can access this information through the MEMBER ONLY section of www.arvc.org. You MUST have your Member ID and Password to login and access this information. To Access the Member Propane Pricing on

Go to http://www.arvc.org. Enter your member ID and password in the white boxes in the upper right corner of the homepage (k sensitive). Click “Resource Pages” on the left side of page. Click “Campground Operations.” Tt is the 4th option down in blue. Click the “CLICK HERE” link in blue at top of page. The PDF sheet should load on your screen.



Issue 149 Campground & RV Park E News