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MARCH 2013 n $2.00


Walt Disney World 20 Top Tips for Doing Disney Right

Start Your Engines: NASCAR Travel Revs It Up A True TrailBlazer: Global Noble | Southern Chile On the Road: Michael Annett




VOL. 35 n ISSUE 2

MARCH2013 CONTENTS Message from Marguerite Tech Topics


Who’s in the Kitchen with TrailBlazer



TrailMix 12 Activities & Events


On the Road: Michael Annett


Photo by Garth Vaughan

News & Notes 18



Encore Calendar of Events


I Knew I Was a TrailBlazer


Spotlight: Orlando 26 A True TrailBlazer: Global Noble

Want to know the inside scoop on all things Disney? Check out our Insider’s Walt Disney World to help plan the perfect trip to the Magic Kingdom.


Features: Insider’s Walt Disney World: 20 Top Tips for Doing Disney Right


NASCAR Travel Revs It Up


Member Deals 44 Advertiser Index 50 Crossword & Sudoku Puzzles


Ask RV Bill 52 Preserve Services Directory


Winding Roads 62 Classified Advertising


On Location 66

Juan Pablo Montoya’s Target car at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Concord, North Carolina. Photo by Lynn Seldon



Travel the NASCAR circuit like a pro! Cover: Walt Disney World V.I.P. Tour Guides. Photo by Gene Duncan MARCH 2013 | TRAILBLAZER


Forget Something? It may look like the perfect set up but you can bet you forgot something.

party lights hammocks

Thanks to that’s not a problem. From chairs to grills to the latest in satellite systems for your RV, you’ll find what you need at

Convenient shipping options, to your home or to over 170 RV resorts and campgrounds across the US and Canada.

outdoor chairs


Plus, join the Traveler’s Club and receive additional discounts and promotions. For details, or to start your shopping adventure, visit






ello! In the last issue of TrailBlazer it was noted that this issue of TrailBlazer would provide readers the chance to get to know a bit about me. As Tom mentioned in his last communiqué with you, I do share the philosophy and the passion for the opportunities and product options we provide to our customers. I thought it might a good start if I explained a bit about my history with ELS and also shared my views and thoughts about the lifestyle we provide as well as the business of providing that lifestyle. I have been with ELS for 20 years and have been in several roles including: acquisitions, asset management, sales and marketing and new business development. Each one of those roles has provided me the opportunity to see, up close, the different facets that make our company so successful. I have been able to get to know our customers and the unique characteristics of our individual properties. Those relationships and that insight have given me the ability to see our world, the ELS world, from two perspectives: the customer’s and as a business. In my office I am lucky to have two fabulous vistas. From my window, I see the bustling city and on my wall, I have a fabulous montage of our preserve photos, as displayed above, taken by our members. As I look at the pictures, I am always impressed by the obvious pride that each member photographer has in our preserves. The view of the city offers that glimpse into the crazy day to day life we all live in our “real” world, where the task at hand is business. The view of the preserve photos

reminds me of how you see our world and also that we provide that place for everyone to get away from it all - to disconnect and reconnect. A visit to any one of our locations is the opportunity to leave behind the hustle and bustle of the city, turn off the electronics and disconnect from the craziness of the everyday world. The preserves and the corresponding lifestyle provide the alternate world where we can reconnect with family, with friends, and with the peace and serenity offered by the natural surroundings. Traditions are rooted, memories are made and I am excited about the experience we offer our customers. For many, the choice to camp with Thousand Trails has been a lifestyle choice that has appealed to many generations. I love when I hear the stories of the family traditions that have been handed down from the seasoned camper to those just starting out. Or when I see newcomers, with no past history of camping, completely embracing all that this lifestyle offers. So, I look forward to the opportunity to communicate with everyone through this monthly message and I am sure that the photos on my wall will provide me with inspiration to share “my view” with you and also to remind myself that our goal is to ensure that you always have the best view possible.

Marguerite Nader President & CEO MARCH 2013 | TRAILBLAZER


Palm Springs, CA: Our girls, Liesl and Kelte, wanting a ride in the Manager’s cart. We walked by the cart and they jumped in! Wheeeee! (Only kidding, no ride today!)

Mission Statement TrailBlazer provides exclusive news and information for the members and guests of Equity LifeStyle Properties Family of Resorts. Each issue enhances the recreational lifestyle of its readers through a lively mix of camping and travel features, resort profiles and product features.

- Annabel Snowden and Terri Kaufman, Full-time Members originally from Boston, MA

EDITOR Joan DeAno Rykal GRAPHIC DESIGNER Heather Anderson ADVERTISING SALES 877-252-9320 TRAILBLAZER (ISSN 0747-2293) is published monthly except bimonthly Nov./Dec. and Jan./ Feb. by MHCTT Memberships, LP, c/o Equity LifeStyle Properties, Inc., Two North Riverside Plaza, Suite 800, Chicago, IL 60606. An annual subscription is $20. Periodicals postage paid at Chicago, IL and additional offices. Postmaster: Send address changes to TRAILBLAZER, 2325 Highway 90, Gautier, MS 39553. Canada Post Publication Mail Agreement 41461526.

TrailBlazer Magazine

Two North Riverside Plaza, Suite 800 Chicago, IL 60606 New Subscriptions 1-877-252-9320

TTN & LTR Reservation Services (From United States and Canada) 1-800-288-7245 • 228-497-3594 April 1 to August 31 Mon. - Fri. 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. September 1 to March 31 Mon. - Fri. 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Central Time 24-hr. STAR Line: 1-800-859-7827 228-497-3594 Member Services 1-800-388-7788 Resort Parks International Reservations 1-800-456-7774 ELS Reservations 1-877-362-6736 PRINTED IN THE USA

Now Win $50 EACH Issue!

Pics from the Parks Photo Submissions Do you have a winning photo from your visits to our preserves and resorts? We’d love for you to share it with us and what’s more, your submission will now be entered into our photo contest. Winners will receive a $50 American Express Gift Card. Each issue we will select ONE “winning” photo from the submissions received (all submissions must be received by midnight on the last day of the month.) Winning photo will be posted on the TrailBlazer website as well as in the magazine. Photo submissions should include a brief description, including location of your photo, your name, city and state and sent to: or mail to: Equity LifeStyle Properties, Attn: TrailBlazer Photos Two North Riverside Plaza, Suite 800 Chicago, IL 60606 Emailed photos should be high resolution. Photos are not returnable and become the property of Equity LifeStyle Properties and may be used for publication on company websites and promotional purposes. One winner will be selected EACH month from submissions received. The winner will be announced in a future TrailBlazer issue and on the website.




Snowflower, CA: Our grandchildren, Patrick and Maggie, kickin’ up some snow on a fun day of sledding at Snowflower! - Jim Shoemaker, Benicia, CA

Pacific City, OR: Late fall in Pacific City was the biggest storm of the year. - Yefim Bam, University Place, WA MARCH 2013 | TRAILBLAZER


▼ ▼



CONGRATS TO OUR 2012 WINNERS Lee Dennill, British Columbia, Canada, Sondra Holtzendorff, Cincinnati, OH, Barry Sehlin, Oak Harbor, WA, John Brannan, Livingston, TX, JP Cooper, Mountain Home, AR, Tracey Lawson, Thomasville, PA, Elizabeth Manczak, Bend, OR, Lilia Majett, Lancaster, PA, Robert Jarvis, Hemet, CA, Judy Mattus, Centralia, WA, Gary Forsmo, Twin Lakes, WI, Curtis Palmer, Reston, VA

Thousand Trails is offering members the opportunity to win a

$1,000 American Express Gift Card It’s easy ... pay your 2013 dues on time and camp at your favorite TT Preserve to earn entries into our monthly drawing. There is no limit to how many entries you can earn - so Get Out and Camp!

Get Out and

Ca mp 8

When you pay your annual dues for 2013 in full, you will be entered into our monthly drawing for a $1,000 American Express gift card. There will be one drawing/one winner each month from January through December 2013. In addition, once you pay your dues in full, each time you camp at a Thousand Trails Preserve in 2013, you will receive an additional entry into the drawing. The drawings are limited to persons who are of legal age. The drawings will be held at our corporate office on the 10th day after the end of each month. Winners will be notified by mail or phone. The odds of winning will depend on the number of entries, but are not expected to exceed 1:100,000. Winners are responsible for federal and state taxes on the award. You may also enter the drawings by printing your name, address, day and evening phone numbers, and email address on a 3” x 5” piece of paper and mailing it to the Sponsor in addressed, stamped envelope. You are limited to one mail-in entry which must be postmarked by December 15, 2013. This promotion is sponsored by MHC Thousand Trails Limtied Partnership, Two North Riverside Plaza, Suite 800, Chicago, IL 60606.


Tech Topics by Paul and Kerri Elders

▶ How many RVers’ dreams of riding high in the Rocky

Mountains have been dashed by the frustration of too little power to confidently tackle the magnificent hills of Colorado? Lack of power has plagued us all at one time or another. Ever chugged your way up a steep hill in a fully decked motorhome, only to be passed by a little bluehaired granny behind the wheel of a ‘69 VW bug, who waves, shakes her head, and smiles understandingly at your dilemma? We have. Let us tell you what we did about it.

Air Filters

One of the most surprisingly simple causes of engine power anemia is a dirty air filter. That’s because all automotive engines, whether gasoline or diesel, need air in order to operate. Before this combustible air enters the engine, it MUST be filtered to screen out impurities (dust, bugs, etc.). Disposable paper filters, foam filters, and reusable fiber filters are available to serve this need. An engine’s power output is directly proportional to the air available for combustion, so even a small restriction in the air induction system will cause an engine’s optimum power output to drop. Check your Owner’s Manual for your manufacturer’s air filter recommendations and always use a replacement filter that’s properly sized for your engine. K&N offers a popular line of reusable air filters that use pleated, oil-impregnated gauze as a filter medium. Generally speaking, pleated designs provide a large filter surface area, providing increased airflow to the engine. Other filter options are available from Fram, Mann, Purolator, and many other companies. Changing your engine’s air filters at recommended intervals will help keep your engine performing at its peak. Change the air filter more often if you travel in dusty conditions (like the desert of the Southwest) for an extended period of time. Recommended inspection intervals for normal driving conditions are usually every 12 months or 30,000 miles for reusable filters and every 12 months or 12,000 miles for disposables. After inspection, clean, re-oil, or discard the filter, as conditions warrant.

Fuel Filters

Another important, but all-too-often neglected, power robber is your fuel filter. These need to be checked and changed periodically and we would ALWAYS advise RVers to keep a couple of spares on hand at all times.

Paul and Kerri Elders

Why? Because all of us eventually do some backcountry travel as we move from Point A to Point B. We’ve all had to fuel up from questionable sources at one time or another. If you have a diesel engine, this is especially important. “Older” diesel fuel that’s been sitting in a tank at a rarelyused fuel stop can grow bacteria and other organisms that can, and will, clog your fuel filter, decreasing engine performance dramatically. This happened to us years ago in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, and left us stranded on a dark highway somewhere in Louisiana when the fuel supply simply stopped flowing to the engine. Fortunately, we knew we weren’t out of fuel, deduced the problem, changed the filter, and made it another 200 miles before it clogged again. Lesson permanently learned: please, benefit from our experience and carry some extra fuel filters in your utility bin.

Cruise Control Tips

There’s no disputing that cruise control is a handy feature for travelers whiling away the miles on those long trips down lonesome highways. Researchers at renowned car lovers’ site found that using the cruise control properly can improve gas mileage by 14%. Sound insignificant? It’s not; think of it as a 14% DISCOUNT on your fuel price, and you’ll sit up and pay attention. It’s best to use the cruise on flat terrain; using the cruise control in mountainous terrain can actually COST you MPGs as the engine revs to go uphill and then slows to control your speed while going downhill. It’s also smart to set the cruise at the highway’s posted speed limit; testers found that speeding was actually fuel-inefficient and extracted a measurable price in MPG. Set the cruise, stay in the slow lane, enjoy your trip, and let the stressed-out speeders just pass you by. Continued on page 62




with TrailBlazer?


with your dutch oven by Lesley Tennessen


ring along a Dutch oven or two to get your engines revved while enjoying a NASCAR tailgate, or any other sporting event that lends itself to this friendly gathering! For this month’s column, I asked my

Dutch oven cooking friends for their favorite recipes for tailgating events and here’s what they submitted! These recipes are great because they come with options to customize to your favorite flavors!

Meatball Pull Aparts (Recipe courtesy of Cyndi Boyer)

Cooking Requirements: 12-inch Dutch oven 30 coals, 11 on bottom in a ring, 19 on top (or a ring and half) to make 375 degree oven Ingredients: 20 Rhodes dinner rolls, defrosted/thawed 20 Meatballs – either homemade or frozen, defrosted 2-3 tablespoons of melted butter Mrs. Dash Garlic and Herb seasoning Parmesan Cheese (or Pepper Jack for a Mexican flair) Filling: Use whatever sounds good to you! Here are a few wild thoughts I had – if you made your own meatballs and used ground chicken you could add some Parmesan cheese and some garlic and dip in Alfredo sauce. You could also sauté some peppers, onions and mushrooms, with regular meatballs, and dip in au jus for a French dip variety. I did a Mexican variety, sprinkling a little taco seasoning or salsa in with the meatball and used a Pepper Jack cheese and dip in sour cream or guacamole. Or try plain old meatballs and dip them in BBQ sauce. Let your imagination run wild – there are many combinations that you can make. 10


To assemble, roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface, into a circle. Place a small amount (roughly a teaspoon) of cheese on the dough; place the meatball in the center, bring the dough up and around the meatball and cheese and seal in all the goodness. Place all inside a greased pan and brush with melted butter and sprinkle with Mrs. Dash and Parmesan cheese. Bake at 375° for 20-25 minutes until they are golden brown and a slight tap produces a hollow sound.

Cheeseburger Pizza

(Adapted from King Arthur Flour and a Noble Pig Vineyard recipes)

Ingredients: Crust (this will make a couple of Dutch oven crusts) 3 cups King Arthur unbleached all purpose flour 1 1/4 teaspoons salt 2 teaspoons instant yeast 4 teaspoons Pizza Dough Flavor, optional but delicious 2 tablespoons olive oil 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons to 1 cup + 2 tablespoons lukewarm water* *Use the lesser amount in summer (or in a humid environment), the greater amount in winter (or in a dry climate), and somewhere in between the rest of the year, or if your house is climate controlled. Or use pre-made dough or canned refrigerator dough Toppings (for one Dutch oven crust) 1/2 pound ground beef 1 medium-large onion, peeled and diced 2 dill pickle spears, diced 5 slices yellow American cheese ½ cup shredded lettuce 2 tablespoons of sesame seeds Copy Cat Big Mac Sauce 1/3 cup mayonnaise 2 tablespoons hamburger relish (it’s sweet-found next to the pickle relish) 4 tablespoons Thousand Island dressing 1 teaspoon granulated sugar 1 teaspoon dried minced onion 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Cheeseburger Pizza

I think this would be a much better snack if you made the pizza dough and cooked it at your tailgate, rather than using refrigerator canned dough. The yeast dough would work better. I used a refrigerator canned dough to speed up this process.

Once the lid is heated, place the dough onto the lid. Replace the upside down oven (legs sticking up) onto the lid where it is seated securely. Place about 18 coals onto the oven and cook for about 10 minutes. Carefully, with the padded gloves, remove the oven from the lid. Put the cooked hamburger/onion mix on the par-baked crust. Put on the diced dill pickles. Cook for another 10 minutes. Lift the oven off again and place the American cheese slices. Replace the oven and melt the cheese, about 3-5 minutes. Lift the oven off for the final time. Drizzle, if you can, or lightly dot by teaspoonfuls, the copycat sauce onto the pizza. Remove it to a cutting board. Cut in small pieces and serve warm. n

Use the lid of your Dutch oven as your pizza pan. This will make it easier to serve. Make sure you have heavy welding or thick padded gloves so that you can remove the oven during the process. Cook the hamburger like ground meat, breaking it up until it is done in a Dutch oven. Drain the hamburger and stir in the diced onion to wilt it. (Note: you can do this part at home to save some time.) Assembly of the pizza: Put enough coals under the lid (on a lid stand) so that you can preheat the lid. You can spray the lid and use cornmeal so that your pizza will slip off. Roll out your pizza dough so that it is just a little smaller than the ridge on the upside down lid.

Cheesebur ger Pizza S

et Up




It’s a Kinda Magic!


rom 1886-1908, Orlando, Florida carried the motto “Phenomenal City.” After a contest in 1908, the moniker given to the city was “The City Beautiful” -- both still apply. If you’re planning a visit to this city, made famous by the Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom, but also rich in history, architecture and the flora and fauna unique to Florida, check out what our nearby resorts have to offer. Here, we highlight just six of the Florida options, four Encore RV Resorts and two Thousand Trails locations. Just 30 miles from Orlando, Encore’s Southern Palms RV Resort, in Eustis, provides an almost rural feeling and is the perfect place to stay after a day in the whirlwind that is the Magic Kingdom. Hold “court” at one of 16 covered shuffleboard courts or 6 bocce ball courts. Energize yourself with a co-ed water aerobics class or line, country

western or swing dance lessons. The range of activities offered at Southern Palms guarantees that there is something for everyone. If you’re in town on March 20, don’t miss the Southern Palms Opry Show or the community-wide Yard Sale! Another great Central Florida location, and less than an hour’s drive to Walt Disney World, is the TT Three Flags Resort. A wooded setting that offers hiking and biking trails, the serenity of the resort is a perfect place to regroup after a long day at Disney. Play a round of mini-golf, enjoy the pool or see what’s happening in the Clubhouse.




Golf’s the game at Encore’s Clerbrook Golf and RV Resort, in Clermont, which is less than 30 minutes from Orlando. Rolling hills, ponds and canals and majestic trees make this one dreamy place. The 18-hole golf course, featuring rolling fairways and undulating greens set among a beautiful natural setting is one of the resorts biggest draws. Practice on the putting green or take one of the instructional classes offered. Shop the onsite pro shop for all that is golf. And when you’re done on the greens, take a dip in one of three pools or enjoy some of the live entertainment offered in the clubhouse.

in the forest? Sherwood Forest offers 1 and 2 bedroom rental cottages year-round. In addition, all 512 sites are fullhookup and a host of amenities await at this campground. Swim in the heated pool and enjoy the Tiki Bar (weekends only), use the fitness center, browse the selections at the library, grab a bite at the Nottingham Café or shop in the new RV Marketplace. All this and only 4 miles from Disney.

If you‘re looking for something a bit closer to the Magic Kingdom, Encore’s Lake Magic RV Resort is only 7 minutes from Disney, yet provides visitors a very tropical feel. Set among towering palm trees, the resort offer spacious sites, beautiful landscaping and plenty of amenities including an outdoor heated pool, sand volleyball court, tennis courts, a basketball court, recreation hall and hot tub! An array of activities provides the opportunity to make your own magic away from all that is Disney. Bingo, pickleball, line dancing, water aerobics, and fun-filled karaoke and movie nights.

TT Orlando offers 255 acres complete with a 60-acre springfed lake with white sandy beaches. Along with proximity to the Magic Kingdom, this resort is the perfect place to relax and unwind. The lake

The name alone, Encore’s Sherwood Forest, evokes a lush setting where magical things occur. And what could be more magical than a cottage offers great bass fishing. Bike paths, boat rentals and a very active schedule of classes and activities make TT Orlando another choice spot for your Orlando adventure. So whether you’re all in for Disney or just looking to spend a day or two in Orlando, we’ve got whatever magic you’re seeking! To see all the Florida Encore RV Resorts and Thousand Trails locations visit n






Our Activities Department is closed for the season. Games and equipment can be checked out from the Ranger Station.

Lake Minden

March 1-3: Thinking Green: Join us for an afternoon of scrapbooking and greeting card making. Make St. Patrick’s Day, Easter or other spring-themed cards and scrapbook pages. Sign up early for the Friday Night Potluck Social and stay for Brown Bag Bingo. March 8-10: Wearing of the Green: Don’t be caught without your green on St. Pat’s day! Craft a pair of St. Patrick’s Day earrings or a shamrock pin. Saturday join us for a St. Patrick’s scavenger hunt and see if you can find the pot of gold. March 15-17: St Patrick’s Day Corned Beef and Cabbage Lunch: Bring a traditional Irish or green dish to the Friday Night Potluck Social and bring a green prize for Brown Bag Bingo. Don’t forget to sign up and get your tickets early for our Annual Corned Beef and Cabbage Dinner Social. For those of you who have enjoyed this dinner with us before, you know what a great meal this is. If this is your first St. Patrick’s Day dinner with us, you’re in for a real treat. March 22-24: All Things Spring: Spring is almost here and it’s time to get out and enjoy everything green at Lake Minden. Start your day with a brisk walk around the lake. Keep your ball on the green as you play a round of mini golf or hit a few balls on the Driving Range. Sign up early for the Friday Night Potluck Social and stay for Brown Bag Bingo. March 29-31: Easter Festivities: Friday night join us for the Potluck Social, Brown Bag Bingo or a Family Movie. Saturday morning we’ll dye Easter eggs with the kids for our annual Easter Egg Hunt on Sunday. Sunday we’ll have an Easter Egg Hunt in the big green field between D and C sections. Bring your cameras; this is a great weekend for photos. Don’t forget to get your tickets early and sign up for our annual Easter Dinner Saturday afternoon.

March 16 133rd Bok Kai Festival The 133rd Bok Kai Festival celebrates the Year of the Snake. The heart of the festival is in the Bok Kai Temple, built in Marysville’s historic Chinatown in 1888. This festival acknowledges the Great Chinese Water God (Bok Eye) and California’s Chinese history dating back to the Gold Rush days. Entertainment, food and crafts provided by cultural organizations from Yuba and Sutter counties will also be a part of the event. The Bok Kai Temple and the Chinese American Museum will be open during both days of the festival. The Festival continues on Sunday with Bomb Day. Parade begins at 11 a.m. for more information visit www.

Lake of the Springs

March 2: Baked Potato Social and Family Candy Bar Bingo. March 9: Baked Potato Social and Family Candy Bar Bingo. March 16: St. Patrick’s Day Dinner and Dance. We will be serving corned beef and cabbage, red potatoes, baby carrots and dessert. March 23: Baked Potato Social and Family Candy Bar Bingo. March 29-31: Easter Weekend: Lots of fun planned for the weekend including a Kids’ Fishing Derby, Easter Egg Coloring, Sunrise Service, Easter Egg Hunt. Kids can meet the Easter Bunny and take pictures. 14



(Events may be subject to change)

Pio Pico

Yay! Our Recreation Department is OPEN! Check out games and outdoor activities supplies. Call the Preserve for weekly detailed activity info. Throughout March: Every Saturday we have our “Marketplace” on the AC Patio from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Our Youth Center is open from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. offering crafts, games and fun for the kids. Plus, every Saturday is our Manager Meeting in the AC at 10 a.m. March 15-16: St. Patty’s Day Crafts, Candy Bingo and Green Scavenger Hunt. Join us on Saturday for Round 2 of our Pio Pico Chili Cook-off. The winner receives a $50 gift card and a spot at the 5th Annual Jamul Chili Cook-Off and Hot Rod Car Show on April 13. The Jamul Cook-Off is sponsored by the Jamul Kiwanis Club and there is a prize of $500! March 30-31: Easter Weekend events include Easter Egg Coloring, Crafts and Candy Bingo, plus Easter Egg Hunt begins on Sunday at noon.

Throughout March Whale Watching Birch Aquarium hosts twice-daily cruises to locate gray whales on their round-trip migration from their Alaska feeding grounds to Baja California. Search for seals, sea lions, dolphins, migrating birds, and more. For reservations call (619) 234-4111.

Rancho Oso

Every Saturday: 11:00-Noon: Come on down to the arena to watch the stock dogs herding sheep and cattle and stay for the bucking bull demo! Get up close and personal with our young bulls as we prepare them for a future in rodeo! A definite photo op! Every Weekend: Join the fun and hop on board the famous Rancho Oso hay wagon to take a tour of our beautiful resort! Wagon will drop off passengers at the barn for the stock dog and bucking bull demo and barn tour. Don’t forget to call the stables at (805) 683-5110 and book your unforgettable horseback ride for ages 8 and over. Of course, your little buckaroos can get their first ride on a big horse, led by one of our friendly wranglers! This is a great “photo-op” for your scrapbook. The weather is perfect for hiking, riding, photography, or wine tasting in the Santa Ynez Valley, only a scenic half hour drive away. Don’t want to drive? Let us help you arrange a guided winery tour with a local tour company! Later in the day, join us for the Ice Cream Social to make your favorite sundae! Keep the weekend sweet with our Candy Bar Bingo too! Check out the new menu items on Saturday and Sunday at the Stone Lodge Kitchen! Rancho Oso is one fun place! Our heated pool reopens mid-month.

Throughout March Quick Silver Miniature Horse Ranch Get your fill of cuteness as the miniature horses have started having their foals, and they are outside on the grass to visit! A newborn “mini” can weigh as little as five pounds at birth! But once they begin to grow and get strong, the show they put on is not to be missed as the little horses run, jump and play with each other. The Ranch is located at 1555 Alamo Pintado Road in Solvang, just 22 miles from the preserve. The Ranch is open seven days per week from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. For information call (805) 686-4002.

San Benito


March 1: Fish Fry features fresh Cod, with French fries, slaw and beverage for $8 (chicken alternative available). March 9: Meat Bingo: anyone can play and win meat! March 16: St. Patty’s Day Corned Beef and Cabbage Dinner, plus music by Then and Now.

NEW YORK Rondout Valley

March 30-31: Hop on over and enjoy our Easter Dinner on Saturday. We provide the baked ham and homemade rolls. Guests are asked to bring their best Easter dish to complete the celebration. Activities will include annual Easter Egg Hunt with prizes, egg coloring, jelly bean guessing contest, crafts and games.

OREGON Pacific City

March 23-31: Oregon Spring Break, Whale Watch Week and Easter crafts and activities.


Seaside’s 4th Annual March and April Madness Property Cleanup begins March 16. March 16: We start off with our traditional early “Earth Day Celebration” by getting outdoors and picking up all the recyclables on the property! We will also be having our St Patrick’s Day Potluck complete with Corned Beef. March 23: Our second event is themed “Pick-Up Sticks”. We walk Seaside’s 70 acres and do exactly what the theme is all about! Last year we had 15 burn piles that each measured 4x4x6! Incredible! A Potluck will be held in appreciation of everyone’s hard work and efforts! March 30: The third event is all about “Resort Beautification”. We get out and clean all the flower and plant beds, replant (if needed), and bring in the bark dust! A Potluck will be held in appreciation of everyone’s hard work and efforts and for Easter!! After the Potluck join us in the Family Clubhouse to decorate the Easter Eggs for the great Hunt on Sunday! On Sunday, it’s Seaside’s second annual Easter Egg Hunt!


Colorado River

Throughout March: Wednesday Ice Cream Socials, Thursday Crafts with Maureen, Saturday Craft Sale and Swap Meet, What’s Happening Meeting and Potluck Dinner and Sunday Worship Service. March 30-31: Saturday Easter Egg Hunt. Sunday worship service with Rev. and Mrs. JV Hammon.

Lake Tawakoni

Please check Ranger Station for activities and schedule during the winter months.


March 30: Easter Egg Hunt on property! Check out our Recreation schedule online for spring activities before you arrive.


Thursdays in March: Lunch and a drink for only $5 at noon followed by crafts at 1 p.m. We will have plenty of fellowship while creating cards for our Troops. Bible Study Group meets in the evening at 7 p.m. at the Family Lodge. March 2: “What’s Happening at San Benito” meeting, conducted by Manager Kelly Moore. March 16: St. Patrick’s Day Dinner: All you can eat Corned Beef and Cabbage for $8. Dinner begins at 6 p.m. in the Family Lodge. Games, including Minute to Win It, will begin at 7:30 p.m. March 30: Easter Dinner served at 6 p.m. followed by magic show featuring Leo the Magnificent at 7:30 p.m. March 31: Annual Easter Egg Hunt out on the Back 40. Lots of colorful eggs and of course, prize eggs too! All children between ages 1 and 14 are invited to join in on the fun.

March 16 11th Annual Wings Over Water Northwest Birding Festival! Join the celebration at this annual event held in one of the Pacific Northwest’s premier bird viewing areas. This festival focuses on the thousands of Brant geese and other birds that visit the pristine shores of Blaine and Birch Bay on their annual migration. Events include viewing stations, seminars, exhibits, live raptor displays, walking field trips of Semiahmoo Spit, and Blaine’s Marine Park. For more information on this event, visit www.blainechamber. com/wow.


March 23: Spring Break-a-Thon begins with lots of fun and activities (mostly indoor!) Join us Easter Weekend for our 4th Annual Easter Egg Hunt and Potluck! We’ll bring the ham! Also, please note that our Happy TTrails horse trails are open for equine enthusiasts (reservations required).

Grandy Creek

March 29-31: Easter Weekend: Hop down the bunny trail to Grandy Creek for this spectacular weekend. There will be egg dying, crafts, an Easter egg hunt for all the kids, great food, good entertainment and lots more.

Whalers Rest

March 22-23: Spring Break “Blow Out” Begins at Whalers Rest. Friday kicks off with a BBQ lunch and the first campfire group fun at 6 p.m. On Saturday, we’ll have Breakfast at Whalers Galley, BBQ Lunch served in the BBQ area on the South Side, and Dinner served at Whalers Galley at 5 p.m. “Bingo Blast Night” in our North Clubhouse for all ages at 7 p.m. This fun will include free games with prizes, and lots of popcorn. March 26: Tonight from 7 to 9 p.m. is our fun “Whalers Teens Only Party” in our North Clubhouse for 12 to 21 years old. Tonight’s theme is a surprise but will bring a lot of fun for all. Don’t forget the free door prizes too. March 27: “Super Candy Bar Bingo Night” will be a lot of fun for all ages in our South Clubhouse at 7 p.m. Come play and leave a winner! March 28: “Kids Extreme Night” is tonight. We have a crazy fun party planned for all the kids. Parents come sign in your child at 6 p.m. Tonight will bring fun games, laughs, treats and great memories. Parents take the night off for a few hours and pick up your kids at 9 p.m. March 29: Serving up BBQ Lunch by the South Clubhouse and afterwards hang out to join us in the South Clubhouse for Easter Egg Dying. We’ll supply the eggs and dye - you just come decorate. March 30: Whalers Galley is serving up Breakfast and Dinner. Lunch will be served by the South Clubhouse at the BBQ area. Be sure to attend the Ice Cream Social in our South Clubhouse. Our Kids’ Easter Egg Hunt starts at 2:30 p.m. Just meet in the South Clubhouse for directions. Come to the South Clubhouse at 7 p.m. for our “Egg Extravaganza Party”! Come share laughs, fun and prizes.

March 23-30 Whale Watch Week Plenty of areas off of Highway 101 that will have whale watching volunteers that will share sightings for the migration of the whales.




Nationwide practice © Phil Cavali




owa-born NASCAR Nationwide Series driver Michael Annett attended The Knoxville Nationals days after he was born. His family owned and operated a car driven by Sprint Car legend Sammy Swindell, so it was only natural that Annett would eventually hit the road to racing stardom. After a very successful detour into hockey, this talented athlete traded in his skates for the driver’s seat in 2006. Successful campaigns in the ARCA Racing Series and the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, as well as a move to the racing hotbed of North Carolina’s Cabarrus County (“Where Racing Lives”), led to the NASCAR Nationwide Series. After top ten points finishes in both 2010 and 2011, Annett joined Richard Petty Motorsports in 2012 to drive the No. 43 Ford Mustang for their newly-formed Nationwide team. The Series is legendary as a stepping stone leading to long and illustrious NASCAR careers, including the likes of Dale Jarrett, Michael Waltrip, Davey Allison, Jeff Gordon, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., and many more. Michael lives in a 42-foot Mountain Aire by Newmar during much of the long NASCAR Nationwide Series season (35+ weeks). He worked with Tom Johnson Camping in Concord, North Carolina (near Charlotte Motor Speedway) to design it to his specifications. What’s your favorite thing about staying in your coach versus a hotel room? The biggest aspect is that it feels like home. Besides your clothes, you can’t really make a hotel room feel like a home. You have your own sheets and pillow. All the food is yours too. It’s a part of you. It’s something you made



yourself—you designed it [see the end of our interview for what Annett would do if he wasn’t driving]. What are your three favorite things onboard? My iPad, my PlayStation®3, and my bed. What are a few favorite tracks and why? Texas for sure [Fort Worth’s Texas Motor Speedway is where Annett was headed after our interview]. The track’s so easy to get in and out of. And, two of my favorite places to eat are in Fort Worth: Dixie’s Barbecue and Texas de Brazil. What’s another destination you’ve enjoyed with your coach? The Dan River near Kernersville, North Carolina. You go there and you get an inner tube and you tube down it. There’s a campsite three miles from where you get in the river. We had a blast. Someone drives your coach to most races, right? Yeah. Chris Morris used to be Jason Leffler’s driver and then Chris came onboard with me last year. He also drives my golf cart [for practices and appearances]. It works out great. What’s your favorite meal onboard? Steak filets. Reed Sorenson [a fellow driver] will often join me. We’ll marinate and grill ‘em. I also love having watermelon and Chris always gets [some] for me. If you couldn’t be a driver, what would you do? Well, I’m trying to build a house right now. I have the chance to get the tile I wanted and all the finishing parts. I kind of have a knack for it, so I guess being an interior designer wouldn’t be a bad thing. n

by Lynn Seldon




News& Notes

Game Room

Chehalis, WA Cabin 10, the original log cabin built

on the property in the 1970s, has been refreshed with new paint, furnishings, bedding, lighting and flooring. We hope you enjoy the new look and feel.

Lake Minden, CA The Front gate (check-in and check-

out), General Store, SuperHost, Sales and Business office were all relocated to one convenient location to create the Lake Minden Welcome Center. New pull-through RV Parking was designated in front of the Welcome Center for convenient check-in and check-out and an additional 29 space POV parking lot was added alongside the Adult Lodge in A Section. The relocation of the General Store to the new Welcome Center supports extended hours for easy access to basic food and snack items, fishing and camping needs and other miscellaneous supplies.

Lake Minden

When visiting the Welcome Center, be sure to check out the new and improved Family Lodge. Changes include a larger Family TV room, a cozy sitting room, and a large Game Room for pool, foosball, and the Wii, and of course, tables for traditional board games, puzzles and crafts. Last but not least, the relocation of the General Store has made room for the new Blue Heron Lakeside CafĂŠ that will open this spring and will feature both indoor and outdoor seating and a new extended menu.

Rancho Oso, CA Rancho Oso is proud to introduce their three new cottages. Each cottage can sleep up to 6 people and includes a queen bed, sofa/sleeper and bunk beds, kitchen and bath. These cottages have replaced three of our older 29-inch deluxe trailers. Stop by and take a look or reserve one now for a very comfortable stay.

Welcome Cente r

Seaside, WA The remodeling of the South Side restrooms

at Seaside is in the final stages of completing the plans for the remodel of this 40-year old building. The first phase, a new roof, is now complete. The second phase will include the replacement of all the window frames and windows. And, there has also been confirmation for replacement of the showers, flooring, heating and ventilation units, and siding as well as repair to the decking. When all is complete, a new coat of paint will finish the project..

Williamsburg, VA New roofing was completed on the



main clubhouse, new windows were installed in the pool common area of the main clubhouse, a new ceiling was installed in the Colonial Court area and new windows and sliding glass doors were installed at the indoor pool. 21




ELS Calendar 2013

Events (Events may be subject to change)

Bay Indies Venice, FL

Mar 7, 2013 | EXPO Mar 13, 2013 | EXPO Mar 16, 2013 | Concert Series - The Marlins Mar 21, 2013 | EXPO Mar 22, 2013 | Concert Series - Paul Tanner Mar 26, 2013 | EXPO Apr 10, 2013 | Volunteer Luncheon

Clerbrook Golf & RV Resort Clermont, FL

Mar 1, 2013 | Variety Show Mar 1, 2013 | Residents Farewell Lunch Mar 7, 2013 | Volunteer Luncheon Mar 11, 2013 | ELS Golf Tournament & Dinner Mar 15, 2013 | Link Family Show Mar 16, 2013 | St. Patrick’s Day Dance

Nokomis, FL

Mar 3, 2013 | Lake Village Mixed Golf Mar 7, 2013 | Shuffle Turkey Shoot Mar 11, 2013 | Ladies Lunch Mar 16, ,2013 | St. Patty’s Day Dance Mar 20, 2013 | Denny Pezzin Variety Show Mar 31, 2013 | Easter Dinner Apr 1, 2013 | Potluck Dinner Apr 4-5, 2013 | Lake Village Variety Show Apr 8, 2013 | Ladies Luncheon Apr 13, 2013 | Farewell Dance

Mid-Florida Lakes Leesburg, FL

Colony Cove

Mar 7, 2013 | Crystal Gage & Maryellen Hooper Country Concert

Mar 15, 2013 | Mardi Gras

Peace River RV Resort

Ellenton, FL

Coquina Crossing Elkton, FL

Mar 17, 2013 | St. Patrick’s Day Dance Apr 26, 2013 | Chorus Spring Concert

Gulf View RV Resort Punta Gorda, FL

Mar 2, 2013 | Dance Mar 9, 2013 | Sweethearts of Branson/ Denny Yeary Show Mar 17, 2013 | St. Patrick’s Day Dance

Harbor Lakes RV Resort Port Charlotte, FL

Mar 16, 2013 | St. Patrick’s Day Dinner/Dance Mar 31, 2013 | Easter Potluck Dinner Apr 6, 2013 | Year End Dance

Lake Magic RV Resort Clermont, FL

Mar 8, 2013 | Farewell Games Mar 9, 2013 | End of Season Party Mar 12, 2013 | 60s Show Mar 28, 2013 | Gospel Night

20 20

Lake Village


Wauchula, FL

Mar 4-9, 2013 | Back to the 60’s Week Begins! Mar 9, 2013 | UpTown Country Music and Dance Mar 10, 2013 | Mike Thomas Concert Mar 11-15, 2013 | Geek Week with Jim and Chris Guld Mar 17, 2013 | St. Patrick’s Day Party Mar 23, 2013 | Hyssongs Music

Royal Coachman RV Resort Nokomis, FL

Mar 16, 2013 | Classic Car Show Mar 17, 2013 | St. Patrick’s Dance Mar 19, 2013 | Cahal Dunne Show Mar 30, 2013 | Easter Egg Hunt Apr 2, 2013 | Season’s Last Dance

Southern Palms RV Resort Eustis, FL

Mar 1, 2013 | Strawberry Festival Day Trip Mar 7, 2013 | Style Show Luncheon Mar 9, 2013 | Shuffleboard Banquet Mar 12, 2013 | St. Patrick’s Day Dinner Mar 13, 2013 | Gospel Night Mar 16, 2013 | Sock Hop & Classic Car Show

Mar 16, 2013 | Senior Prom Dance at Sun Hall Mar 20, 2013 | Southern Palms Opry Show Mar 23, 2013 | Yard Sale & Open House Mar 27, 2013 | New Tradition Jazz Ensemble Mar 30, 2013 | Carnival Street Party Mar 31, 2013 | Easter Egg Hunt Mar 31, 2013 | Easter Potluck Dinner

Terra Ceia Village RV Resort Palmetto, FL

Mar 9, 2013 | Sock Hop and BBQ Mar 13, 2013 | Craft Fair Mar 15, 2013 | Golf Party Mar 16, 2013 | Thank You Dinner Mar 31, 2013 | Easter Dinner Potluck

Winter Quarters Pasco RV Resort Lutz, FL

Mar 17, 2013 | St. Patrick’s Day Parade & Party Mar 18, 2013 | “56-Rock & Roll” Hits of the 1950s Mar 22, 2013 | Dance with the Encores Mar 27, 2013 | IIChance Concert

ViewPoint RV, Golf & Tennis Resort Mesa, AZ

Mar 3, 2013 | Quilt Show Mar 7, 2013 | “Paperback Writer” Beatles Tribute Mar 8, 2013 | Sock Hop Mar 14, 2013 | Country Store Crafts Mar 17, 2013 | St. Patrick’s Day Parade & Party

Voyager RV Resort Tucson, AZ

Mar 13, 2013 | Dave and Daphne (entertainers)

Yuma Art Center

Mar 2, 2013 | Craft Sale Mar 8, 2013 | Annual Resident’s Appreciation Party Mar 10, 2013 | Memorial Service Mar 22, 2013 | Volunteer Luncheon Mar 31, 2013 | Easter Potluck Dinner Apr 25, 2013 | 3rd Thursday Potluck Dinner

Mar 6, 2013 | “Magic of Manilow & Midler” Concert Mar 23, 2013 | “56-Rock & Roll” Hits of the 1950’s

Golden Sun RV Resort

Fun-N-Sun RV Resort

Mar 9, 2013 | ABBA tribute band Mar 17, 2013 | St. Patrick’s Day Parade & Party

Mar 14, 2013 | Legends of Country Music

Monte Vista Village RV Resort

Harlingen, TX

Mesa, AZ

Mar 12, 2013 | Legends of Country Music

Mar 17, 2013 | St. Patrick’s Day Parade & Party Mar 18, 2013 | “Magic of Manilow & Midler” Concert Mar 21, 2013 | Senior Prom Mar 29, 2013 | Easter Egg Hunt

Paradise South RV Resort

Paradise RV Resort

Southern Comfort RV Resort

Mar 1, 2013 | Missouri Opry (country music) Mar 4, 2013 | “Magic of Manilow & Midler” Concert Mar 6, 2013 | USO Veterans’ Fundraiser Mar 9, 2013 | Shoppers Paradise Mar 12-14, 2013 | Paradise Choral-Airs Concert Mar 16, 2013 | Residents Arts & Crafts Show

Mar 1, 2013 | ABBA tribute band

Apache Junction, AZ

Sun City, AZ

Country Sunshine RV Resort Weslaco, TX

Mar 13, 2013 | Legends of Country Music

San Benito, TX

Lakewood RV Resort

Mercedes, TX

Mar 15, 2013 | Legends of Country Music

Weslaco, TX

Sunshine RV Resort Harlingen, TX

Mar 2, 2013 | ABBA tribute band Mar 16, 2013 | Legends of Country Music


Royal Lahaina Resort, Maui and Royal Kona Resort, Big Island Royal Lahaina Resort, Maui: The Royal Lahaina Resort is located on Maui which has been honored by Conde Nast Traveler as one of the “Best Islands in the World.” The 27-acre Resort is set on Kaanapali Beach, which was voted “America’s Best Beach.” You will know you’re in Hawai’i the moment you set foot in the understated lobby. From the cool flagstone beneath your feet to the warm koa-wood walls and inviting wicker easy chairs, you will feel the soothing embrace of the tropics.

n Five nights in a om Oceanview ro ily • Breakfast da • Luau for two  unset cocktail •S ise and dinner cru r  ive day Dolla •F compact car o* • $1636 for tw

Royal Kona Resort, Big Island: Even before you are welcomed to the Royal Kona Resort by the gracious staff, you will be embraced by a swirl of salt air, the life-breath of the islands. You will see it ruffling the fronds of the palm trees that fringe the 12 manicured acres, tossing the waves against the stark black lava rocks at the property’s feet, marching columns of clouds across the uninterrupted expanse of sky. The air here presents you with the perfume of tropical flowers. It is a reminder that you are on the Big Island of Hawai’i, a reminder to breathe, to exhale, and completely relax.

Travel Dates: 4/1/13 to 12/16/13 Ask us how to complete your package by adding airfare.

Call Preferred Access at (800) 281-4977 *Prices subject to availability and can change at any time and without notice. 22





Marjorie and Roy Nesbitt

Grandkids at LaConner

I Knew I Was a



hether you started your camping and RVing adventure at the tender age of 5, or you stumbled into the lifestyle at age 65, each and every one of our Thousand Trails members has a special story about his or her experience with the outdoor lifestyle. TrailBlazer will regularly highlight a member in our “I Knew I Was a TrailBlazer� feature.

This month, TrailBlazer would like to introduce you to Marjorie Nesbitt, a woman who has been a member of Thousand Trails since 1978. Her children grew up going to Thousand Trails locations and the memories they created are countless. TB: How long have you been camping and RVing? Who introduced you to it? Tell us how it all began!



MN: In about 1978 my husband and I decided to take our two kids (7 and 9) to Disneyland for Christmas...and to surprise them by joining TT beforehand. You should have heard the screams of delight when we turned into Chehalis preserve! TB: How did you first hear about Thousand Trails? MN: A friend was working for the Cultus Lake preserve, and told us. TB: What is one of your fondest camping memories? How about one of your fondest TT memories? MN: Sitting around many campfires roasting marshmallows with our kids. Raising our kids every weekend at TT, mostly Cultus. They had a great group of TT friends...and it kept them out of trouble!

TB: What type of camper are you/what equipment do you use? What do you prefer and why? (ex: fifth wheel, RV, tent, cabins, etc.) MN: We started with a 13-foot trailer, moved up to larger trailers, 5th wheel, campers, and motorhomes. Our last MH was a 32-foot Class A which I had to reluctantly sell last year. After nearly 40 years of camping together, my husband passed away. My grown up family went camping with me to LaConner one last time with our motorhome and I made the decision to now rent a trailer or cabin as I travel. TB: Where have you gone that you wouldn’t have otherwise, if it hadn’t been for your Thousand Trails membership?

Teaching water safety

MN: Our furthest trips were down the Oregon Coast and into southern California. TB: What is your favorite part about the outdoor lifestyle? MN: Free to stop anywhere and make a lunch or coffee, etc., and have a secure destination to stay in, no matter what time we arrived. And, the great friends at TT. TB: Any favorite camping or RVing stories? MN: One favorite annual event was taking friends to Cultus for the annual Polynesian luau. Our daughter was a part of that for about 30 years, so [it was] a wonderful place to take friends and introduce them to TT.

Grandpa always barbequed

TB: Finish this sentence: I knew I was a TrailBlazer when... MN: I reflected back on my kids’ teen years...their close friends were at Cultus TT ...where I knew they were safe and not out driving on the roads. Did they stretch the boundaries? Of course they did! But I’m so proud of the wonderful spouses and parents they’ve turned out to be! From funny stories to touching moments, we’re looking to tell the story of our members - when they started and when they realized they were a true “TrailBlazer.” If you’re interested in being interviewed, send us a note at ■

Biking at LaConner MARCH 2013 | TRAILBLAZER




Hogsmeade at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. HARRY POTTER, characters, names and related indicia are trademarks of and © Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. Harry Potter Publishing Rights © JKR.© 2013 Universal Orlando Resort

Universal Studios For movie buffs, comic book lovers and Harry Potter fanatics, Universal Studios may leave them thinking they’ve died and gone to heaven. Universal Studios boasts two theme parks, both of which offer completely different experiences. To check out the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, The Amazing Adventures of Spider Man and the beautifully illustrated Cat in the Hat, be sure to make time for Universal’s Islands of Adventure. While meandering the streets of Hogsmeade in the Harry Potter section, muggles (non-magic folks) are given a chance to feel whimsical for a day. Sip on butter beer and purchase a wand from Ollivanders or check out all the confections available at Honey Dukes! For the real daredevil visitors, Islands of Adventure poses two challenges: The Incredible Hulk Coaster and the Jurassic Park River Adventure. Right next to this theme park sits Universal Studios, a movie buff’s dream. Park goers are able to learn about horror movie makeup during Universal Orlando’s Horror Make-Up Show. More the music type? Fear not, the Blues Brothers are there to put on a Chicago-style street party for all guests. If you’ve come to Universal Studios for the true on-screen experience, be sure to take advantage of the rides the theme park has available. From The Simpsons Ride and Shrek 4-D to an E.T. Adventure and Revenge of the Mummy, you’re able to jump right into the action and feel as though you’re a part of the film or show!

Marvel Super Hero Island. © 2013 Universal Orlando Resort


pon hearing anyone mention Orlando, Fla., it’s difficult not to first think of Mickey Mouse, his polka dot dress wearing girlfriend and the castle that resides at the most magical place on Earth. The Walt Disney World theme park empire, totaling four different experiences, sprawls across Orlando, providing hours of endless entertainment. However, while visiting this entertaining location, don’t get too caught up with the magic of Disney - there are plenty of other amazing sites to visit while spending time in Orlando.

Seuss Landing © 2013 Universal Orlando Resort

Spotlight | Orlando

No matter what you choose to visit while exploring Orlando, be sure to play to your interests and take advantage of all that Orlando, home to Walt Disney World, has to offer! ■ by Annie Colletti

Blizzard Beach. © The Walt Disney Company

TurtleTrek® 3D movie. ©SeaWorld Orlando Dolphin Lagoon at Discovery Cove® ©SeaWorld Orlando

SeaWorld Dive into the aquatic life and see all that SeaWorld Orlando has to offer! For us land dwellers, it may be easy to focus on what we see day to day, and never experience the environment in which our finned friends live. From spectacular shows to exciting exhibits, SeaWorld brings the water, and its inhabitants, much closer to its visitors. One Ocean is the newest Shamu show at the theme park. A journey led by beautiful orcas, or killer whales, teaches viewers that we are all a part of one world, one ocean. To better understand the magnetism of the sea, A’Lure, The Call of the Ocean will leave you with no questions unanswered. Acrobats and athletic performers tell the story of how the sea has cast a spell on many fishermen for years. In between the shows, park goers should take time to visit each of the exhibits available to visitors. Did you know that ancestors to the shark swam the seas millions of years before dinosaurs walked the Earth? Come face to face with a shark in Shark Encounter. The Manta Aquarium, Dolphin Cove, Pacific Point Preserve and Turtle Trek all bring us closer to the creatures of the waters. And, in the spring of 2013, SeaWorld Orlando will be welcoming everyone’s favorite tuxedoed friends to the park with the opening of the exhibit Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin.

Water Parks While experiencing all that Orlando has to offer, don’t forget to take a moment and cool down. Not only does Walt Disney offer four extravagant theme parks, it also showcases two large water parks: Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach. Sure to please swimmers both young and old, Typhoon Lagoon is a tropical paradise right in the middle of Orlando. Castaway Creek, the park’s very own lazy river, gives visitors a chance to put their feet up and relax as they wind around Typhoon Lagoon. Thrill seekers, fear not. This water park features Humunga Kowabunga, three fully enclosed slides that allow riders to fly down five stories in just a few seconds! Additionally, the Shark Reef gives guests a chance to swim with leopard and bonnethead sharks, stingrays and tropical fish. Experience the polar opposite of a tropical day at another Disney water park, Blizzard Beach. Don’t be fooled by the snow capped boats and attractions, you’ll stay plenty warm in this arctic local from the Orlando sun and running from attraction to attraction. Start out with the Toboggan Racers and challenge a friend to a race down a slide. If you’re looking for an extreme thrill, take on the Summit Plummet, a 120-foot high, 360-foot long, 12-story drop that will make you plunge at 50-60 mph! If you’re looking for a more relaxing day, grab a raft and take on one of the many rafted water slides available at Blizzard Beach, perfect to take on alone, as a couple or with the entire family.



Camping is always better with friends! CONGRATS TO OUR 2012 WINNERS Grand Prize - Irene Hardin, Honea Path, SC Second Prize - Polly Buenger, Oyster Creek, TX Third Prize - Diane Hernandez, Wills Point, TX, Richard Vidal, Bridgeport, TX, Suzanne Daneau, Victoire De Sorel, QC, Rocky Lawrence, Elverta, CA, John Howard, Victorville, CA, Matthew Phines, Exeter, CA, Alan Gerwatowski, Fair Haven, MA, Terry McBratney, Delta, BC, Willy James, Lakeside, CA, Delores Blankenbaker, Keizer, OR

Receive a $25 American Express Gift Card when your referral purchases a Zone Camping Pass. Your referral also enters you into our 2013 drawing for a chance to win these great prizes.

Grand Prize 7 Night Cruise or Trip to Hawaii (a $4,000 value)

Second Prize

4 Nights in either Las Vegas, San Francisco or Orlando (a $2,000 value)

Third Prize

FREE DUES for 2014 (10 winners selected) (up to $499 value)

Contact Us Today! 1.888.808.8925 28

Details and|qualifi cations for participation in this promotion may apply and are set forth on page 62 of this magazine. MARCH 2013 TRAILBLAZER






he time: late June, early July, 1959. The setting: Southern Chile. The weather: Cold and getting colder. The players: Noble, Dean and a cast of characters

including Chilean Naval Officers, a German manager of ski resort, a Scotch/Irishman, a young Englishman who was walking the world, Argentine truckers and plenty of birds! The original plan was to leave Santiago, Chile and head over the Andes to reach Buenos Aries. If you recall, Noble had plans to reconnect with the Chilean Naval officers that he met during his flight training in Pensacola. Upon finding out that one of the officers had been promoted and was the commanding officer of the naval base in Punta Arenas, Chile, (a location much further south than Dean and Noble had planned on going), they decided to go visit. “Dean had no problem with the change of plans,” said Noble. “There would be new birds to see that far south. That is why Dean and I never had any problems determining our route. There would always be birds he had not identified in their native habitat. How lucky could a guy get…and I would get to see my old buddy.” So they headed south to the key city of Los Angeles but found the roads to be in poor condition. “A truck driver told us that we were the first vehicle to negotiate that road for the past 15 days. But that was our MO – if the road looked good and we had an alternative route, we chose the lesser road…or else where would all the trailblazing be?” They arrived in Volcan Osorno Country, an intermittently active volcano and a major geologic point in all of Chile as well as ski country.“ After a few days of rough roads we were ready for some excitement and skiing would do just fine,” said Noble. Greeted by a “very pleasant German manager” at the Antillanca ski resort, Noble was treated to free skis, equipment and lift tickets because the gentleman like the duos unique Jeep “home” as well as their mission.



After a long day of skiing where Noble was the recipient of resort’s generosity, it was Noble’s turn to provide something all would enjoy that they did not have at Antillanca…popcorn and stereophonic music. “Jolly Time Popcorn, of Sioux City, Iowa, had given me four cartons of individually wrapped popcorn and Ampex had provided us with a beautiful stereophonic tape recorder with two individual speakers and music tapes,” said Noble. Needless to say, the popcorn was devoured and the stereo provided the music that allowed for dancing til 4 a.m. for the next two nights. “Antillanca Lodge opened in 1952...this was the first music in the lodge since its opening,” said Noble. “All good things have to come to an end some time, so we left Antillanca and we were off to Punta Arenas. But you cannot drive to Punta Arenas from Chile as there is no complete set of roads, “ said Noble “We had to first drive east over the Andes into Argentina and then south on Argentine roads back into Chile. It was over 1,000 miles from San Carolos de Bariloche to Punta Arenas down through cattle country into the sheep country of Patagonia. Dean was in his glory. Driving south we saw large ostrich-like birds, known as rhea, running by the road. We witnessed a large flock of tropical parrots and as we approached Punta Arenas, we saw many pink flamingoes.” Dean had been given a .22 caliber pistol by a Frenchman for the purpose of hunting birds. “You have to be a very good shot to hit anything with a .22 let alone a bird at a distance,“ said Noble. “But Dean was very good and he managed to shoot an Upland Goose on our way south. He skinned it and we had it for dinner…stewed, with potatoes I peeled. We were never without some exotic meal which we prepared from our local assembly.”

In Santiago they met a friend of the Jeep associates, a Mr. Maclean, who took the pair under his wing, providing a much needed warm bath as well as some scotch whiskey. “We were also treated to dinner at another friend of Mr. Maclean’s. This is one good reason why our 15-month trip turned into a 37-month journey. The world embraced us and we loved it. Behind each night’s adventures someone was taking us home for dinner, or to a movie or on safari. I lost count of how many times we were unexpectedly invited to share in some memorable event,” said Noble. Plenty of adventure, plenty of friendships but also plenty of trouble with the Jeep. On this stretch of the journey alone, they experienced a flat tire, a detached front steering gear that sent them reeling into a ditch and a very serious accident in which the Jeep overturned with its passengers inside. Mr. Maclean had also introduced the pair to a 26-year-old British gentleman, currently residing in Canada, who was in the process of walking the world. “He had been two years in South America. His name was Richard Dugdale and we liked him so I invited him to join us for our trip north to Buenos Aries, some 2,000 miles away,” recalls Noble. Leaving Punta Arenas (they never did connect with the naval officer) bound for Buenos Aries, Dean, Noble and Richard were riding along in the Jeep when Dean attempted to pass a steel truck. “As Dean was attempting to pass, the truck moved to the right and having nowhere to go but the shoulder, we drove onto the soft earth to avoid a collision and the Jeep was pulled down a three foot embankment,” said Noble. We were top heavy and overturned on our right side. Dean tumbled down onto Richard and Richard tumbled onto me. None were hurt. We scrambled out the left door, which was now on top, and determined that the solid steel frame of our house had created the fortress which took the brunt of the overturn. That fortress accounted for most of our weight and had saved the Jeep from serious damage. “

“Pulling back onto the highway, the right front wheel broke off, said ‘adios’ and rolled right past the trio,” recalled Noble. The Jeep was out of control and swerved back toward the ditch, stopping just short of it. The spindle had snapped. “So I packed up my overnight kit, brought a brief case with my passport and money and the old part and hopped in a truck Richard had flagged down for the 350 mile ride to Bahia Blanca. I left Richard and Dean behind to guard the Jeep,” Noble said. The road to Bahia Blanca was horrible so the trip took 24 hours which included mechanical stops for the trucks. “But that was OK. Who was in a hurry? Certainly not I,” said Noble. It was a great adventure pulling over to the side of the road with Argentine truckers and their Italian sidekicks. They carried wood for a makeshift BBQ as well as raw beef steaks. A 4,000 gallon wine truck also joined us and we ate BBQ, enjoyed good Argentine wine for breakfast, lunch and dinner for all three days of that trip. All compliments of the hospitable Argentine truckers who were looking out for this ‘Norte Americano’ with his broken down Jeep. “ Once in Bahia Blanca and the right spare parts were located, Noble hopped a bus and 36 hours later was back with Dean and Richard. “We learned how to put a spindle on by trial and error and then off we ventured for Buenos Aries…and the Teatro Colon.” See what happens in our next issue. ■

The steel truck never stopped but soon a few other truckers stopped and with their help and 200 feet from the winch cable, the Jeep was righted. “Inside the RV was a mess. We had open oil cans, open honey bottles… you can imagine! It was a chore to make it livable again but we did and in a couple hours we were ready for the road,” said Noble.



When the Snowbirds Fly Home, They Have RPI Options Galore


o West, Young Man! That was a wellknown exhortation from the past touting opportunity and adventure. A modern version for seekers of fun, relaxation, exploration and a warm climate might be Go South, Ye Snowbird! But come springtime, the trek starts its reversal as seasonal RVers begin their journeys home. That doesn’t have to be a straight shot, non-stop, though. There is a remarkable variety of quality RPI resorts along everybody’s way to break up the trip and experience something new and exciting. If, for instance, you are heading back toward the northeast after a Florida sojourn a unique stop can be found at South of the Border, a roadside attraction on I-95 in South Carolina featuring restaurants, gas stations, a motel, a small amusement park, shopping and fireworks. (You’ll no doubt see one of its hundreds of billboards on your route.) Then motor into North Carolina and find the Sycamore Lodge Resort. This historic and utterly charming location, set amid towering eastern white pine trees, is close to shopping, entertainment, cultural attractions and natural marvels. It’s also minutes from one of the nation’s legendary golf courses in Pinehurst. In fact, the area is a golfer’s dream, with over 40 courses within a three-wood’s swing.

If you decide to make Virginia your stopover, Skyline Ranch Resort in Front Royal offers a nearby cornucopia of American history. You have easy access to numerous Civil War battle sites, the wonders of Washington, D.C. (including the National Cherry Blossom Festival from March 20 April 27) and colonial Williamsburg. Apart from history, there is the natural beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Shenandoah River. In fact, the Blue Ridge Parkway, the country’s longest rural parkway, passes right through Front Royal. The staff at Skyline is renowned for its helpful, friendly ways and great knowledge of all the surrounding opportunities. Say your home is more toward the Midwest. From Florida you can venture through Georgia and Tennessee. For a peach of a Georgian visit, make it to Southern Trails Resort in Unadilla, south of Macon. This is, actually, where the very concept of Southern hospitality was coined. You can check out the strange beauty of the Little Grand Canyon, view the history of flight at the Aviation Museum or take a ride on the SAM Shortline Excursion Train. In Tennessee, Mill Creek Resort in Pigeon Ford (which opens April 15th) is a popular spring destination in the Smoky Mountains. You’ve got musical attractions, museums, theatrical delights, the outdoor adventures of the Smokies and the phenomenon that is Dollywood.

Whether you’re a snowbird, year-round traveler or only hit the road once in a blue moon, an RPI membership gives you entry to the finest RV resorts in every part of the country at dramatically lower rates. With RPI membership, you are guaranteed the same great Not an service time and time again. RPI M e

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Walt Disney World 20 Top Tips for Doing Disney Right

A trip to Walt Disney World by Lynn can be overwhelming for even veteran visitors. After all, we’re talking 25,000+ acres, four major theme parks with hundreds of activities and attractions, and about 500 places to eat, drink, and be Disney. However, those who do their homework will find that insiders know how to make a trip to Walt Disney World even more enjoyable—and much less overwhelming.

“Planning and organizing are essential to a successful Walt Disney World vacation,” says Bob Sehlinger, author and executive publisher of The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World (see “Be An ‘Unofficial’ Insider”). However, Sehlinger adds that too much planning can lead to a lack of spontaneity. “What we are saying is that you need a plan. You don’t have to be compulsive or inflexible; just think about what you want to do before you go.”

Here are 20 insider tips for doing Disney right:

New Fantasyland opens at Walt Disney World Photo by Gene Duncan 34 MARCH 2013 | TRAILBLAZER


“Let the Memories Begin” Show

When to Visit

Insiders know to visit during the cooler months and to try to stay away during the peak periods of family vacationing. Prime times for families (and extended families) are when the kids are generally out of school—June, July, and August, around major holidays, and during spring break from late-February through April.

Let the Memories Begin

Photo by Diana Zalucky


As part of the “Let the Memories Begin” show, Disney guests become part of the nightly spectacular—when photos taken in the park during the day become larger-than-life projections on Cinderella Castle at Magic Kingdom (and at “It’s a Small World” at Disneyland Resort in Anaheim). This groundbreaking new experience celebrates the deep memories created in Disney’s theme parks every day. Insiders know they can also share their home videos and snapshots at a special “Let the Memories Begin” hub (

Be Among the First

There’s always something new at Walt Disney World and those in the know simply know to head there before the word gets out. Options include the expansion of the New Fantasyland (nearly doubling in size with the grand opening at Magic Kingdom Park this past December); “Under the Sea—Journey of the Little Mermaid” and “Enchanted Tales with Belle” at Fantasyland; the re-engineered Test Track Presented by Chevrolet in Epcot’s Future World, including the new and alreadypopular Chevrolet Design Center; the opening of Splitsville, America’s Bowling Alley, in Downtown Disney West Side; and lots of tasty new dining options (see #18).

Stay Disney

Photo by Todd Anderson

Disney’s Polynesian Resort

It’s not just Disney World propaganda—staying in a Walt Disney World owned- and -operated resort has many advantages, including: complimentary “Magical Express” baggage service and transportation from Orlando International Airport (with special luggage tags that bypass baggage claim and send bags straight to the room); easy access to a variety of Disney-driven transportation options (no tow vehicle needed!); “Extra Magic Hours” (see #5); and the “Disney Dining Plan” (see #18). Other advantages include convenient locations, themed resorts, a generous complimentary youth stay policy (generally those 17 and under stay with parents and grandparents for free, up to room capacity), youth services and facilities, all-in-one ticketing, parking fee exemption, and preferred tee times for golf (plus free transportation). These advantages are for all Disney accommodations, including Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground.

Location, Location, Location © Disney

Doing insider Disney is easier with the best home base for exploration—and mid-day swimming breaks and siestas. Of course, those visiting Walt MARCH 2013 | TRAILBLAZER


Disney World in their RV will want to seriously consider Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground. Those visiting without their RV and with young children will want to consider one of the “monorail resorts,” including Disney’s Contemporary Resort, Disney’s Polynesian Resort, and Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa—all convenient to Magic Kingdom and monorail transportation to Magic Kingdom and Epcot. The spacious new suites at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort are ideal for adults and kids who don’t want to share a standard (and standard-sized) room. Adult couples visiting without children will enjoy a location close to Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios, including Disney’s Yacht Club Resort, Disney’s Beach Club Resort, and Disney’s BoardWalk (which also features great nightlife).

Town Square Theater © Disney

What Line?

Disney’s FASTPASS system allows guests to avoid waiting at certain popular attractions in all four theme parks. If the posted wait time for an attraction is long, smart guests can use their park passes to obtain a no-fee FASTPASS with an assigned return time (within an hour-long window) with little or no waiting. There’s also the innovative “rider swap” program that allows one parent to wait with a child who is unable to ride an attraction while one parent rides—then they switch with minimal wait time. “Tip Boards” located at strategic crossroads also give approximate wait times to save time and steps. Those who arrive right when a park opens or head to popular attractions during parades will also find shorter lines.

Extra Magic

Studio Backlot Tour Photo by Scott Miller

The “Extra Magic Hours” program provides access to certain parks before and after normal opening hours. It’s only available to those staying in Walt Disney World owned- and – operated resorts—plus Walt Disney World Dolphin, Walt Disney World Swan, Shades of Green, and the Hilton at Downtown Disney. The exclusive time is one hour before park opening and up to three hours after park closing. The park varies from day to day, providing up to 16 extra theme park hours each week!


Storybook Circus 36

Photo by Gene Duncan MARCH 2013 | TRAILBLAZER

Park hopping can be stressful at times and that’s why Walt Disney World features several world-class spas. The Spa at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa features the feel of old upstate New York and themed treatments and packages like the Adirondack Stone Therapy (using hot stones) and First Spa Experiences for those 4-12. The Mandara Spa at the Walt Disney World Dolphin radiates Balinese tranquility and eastern-leaning treatments, including special Generation YSPA offerings for Generation Y. Disney’s beloved Grand Floridian Spa at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa was closed for enhancements until early-2013, but will reopen with more soothing options than ever. There are also more than a half-dozen additional spa and massage treatment locations, including Disney’s Animal Kingdom

Lodge, Disney’s Wilderness Lodge Resort Hotel, Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort Hotel, and Disney’s BoardWalk Inn.

Shop ‘til You Drop

The theme parks have lots of unique shopping options (Vinylmation figurines remain the rage—and D Street has the largest collection!), but the resorts and, specifically, Downtown Disney also have some super shops. Once Upon a Toy in Downtown Disney Marketplace is a great place for kids—and kids at heart—to build and customize decadent toys in five uniquely themed rooms. Tren-D carries chic sundresses, handbags, and more with oh-so-subtle Disney designs. Hoypoloi features fine art and jewelry pieces. Kids will also love Disney’s Candy Cauldron, while adults might enjoy Sosa Family Cigars and the huge Orlando Harley-Davidson Store. Disney veterans also know to save their shopping until late, when they’ll be heading back to their accommodations—and that certain merchandise can be delivered to their Disney resort free of charge.

The Tree of Life - Animal Kingdom Photo by Gene Duncan

Go Fish

Many visitors don’t know that Walt Disney World has world-class fishing right in its backyard. Guests on BASS-guided fishing excursions routinely catch bass weighing two to eight pounds! Plus, BASS fishing participants at Walt Disney World receive a one-year BASS membership, which includes a BASS Times magazine subscription, special discounts, and more.

A Need for Speed

The Disney-based outpost of the nationwide Richard Petty Driving Experience (www. lets participants get behind the wheel—or in the passenger seat—of a NASCAR race car reaching speeds up to 140 miles-per-hour on the mile-long tri-oval track. In addition, the Disney’s Formula One-style Exotic Driving Experience allows lucky insiders to take the likes of Lamborghinis, Porsches, and Ferraris out for a spin.

Test Track - Epcot Photo by Ali Nasser

Background photo by Garth Vaughan


Many duffers may not know that Walt Disney World is consistently ranked one of the world’s great golf destinations. Disney’s famed Osprey Ridge Golf Course was crafted by Tom Fazio, while Joe Lee designed the Magnolia, Palm and Lake Buena Vista layouts. Unofficial Guide golf writer, Larry Olmstead, says Osprey Ridge may be closed for renovations and management of the layout will eventually be turned over to the new Four Seasons Resort.

Visit Exotic Times & Lands

Most everyone knows they can “travel” the world without leaving the grounds of Epcot, but many may not know that the fantasy travel experiences continue at the various world-famous resorts. The possibilities for guests and visitors alike include the South Seas (Disney’s Polynesian Resort); exotic Africa

Casey Jr. Splash ‘N’ Soak Station Fantasyland Photo by Matt Stroshan



(Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge); 19th century South Florida (Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa); the Old South (Disney’s Port Orleans Resort); the hey-day of the Mid-Atlantic shore (Disney’s BoardWalk); old New England seaside (Disney’s Beach Club Resort and Disney’s Yacht Club Resort); America’s Great western parks (Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort); and America’s iconic 20th century at Disney’s Pop Century Resort.

Senior (and Grandkid) Moments

The Unofficial Guide earns its keep just with guidance for those who choose to bring their grandkids, including making an orientation visit without them; setting time and walking parameters; insider tips on wheelchairs and electric carts; any rides to possibly avoid (hint…there aren’t many); and their famed “Dumb-orDie-in-a-Day Touring Plan” for those with small children.

Circus Allure

Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival Photo by Gene Duncan

Labeled the “hottest thing under the Orlando soleil” by one reviewer, Cirque du Soleil’s “La Nouba” is decadently white hot when it comes to costumes and acts ranging from the high wire to trapeze to aerial ballet and so much more. It’s easy to make an insider Downtown Disney night of it with pre- or post-show reservations at nearby Bongos Cuban Café, The Dining Room at Wolfgang Puck Café, or Portobello —as well as even more evening entertainment at House of Blues.

Epcot’s Colorful Gardens

All of Walt Disney World’s flowers and gardens are colorful, but Epcot especially comes alive from March to mid-May every year. That’s when the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival takes place, including interactive gardening seminars, demonstrations, a children’s play areas, a butterfly garden, Disney character topiaries, and gardens ablaze from the colorful entrance plaza to the far reaches of World Showcase.

Fireworks & More Galore

Spaceship Earth - Epcot Photo by Gene Duncan

The “Wishes” fireworks and multimedia extravaganza at Magic Kingdom is better than ever, but insiders know to check the schedule for Epcot’s “IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth,” “Fantasmic!” at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and the “Main Street Electrical Parade,” also at Magic Kingdom. For in-the-know families or groups of up to ten, a Wishes” fireworks cruise on Seven Seas Lagoon provides a unique view and experience.


When combined with highly-recommended accommodations and attractions “Magic Your Way” packages, the “Disney Dining Plan” features a complete cruise-style vacation stay/play/eat offering to suit different budgets and appetites—including at least two meals and one snack for each night of a Disney resort stay. In the parks proper, there’s a diverse menu of options for foodies and those who just want to grab a quick 38


50’s Prime Time Café Hollywood Studios Photo by Scott Miller

bite before hitting another attraction. Those staying at or visiting Animal Kingdom Lodge (ask about spacious Vacation Club accommodations) will want to enjoy Africainspired cuisine (and South African wines) at Jiko—The Cooking Place, as well as more casual buffet-style dining at Boma—Flavors of Africa. For a splurge, it’s hard to beat Todd English’s bluezoo and Grand Floridian Resort & Spa’s Victoria & Albert’s (the only AAA Five-Diamond restaurant in Central Florida). New Epcot options right on the lagoon include Tutto Italia and La Hacienda—a perfect place to dine and enjoy the nightly fireworks. Other unique or new dining options include French-inspired Be Our Guest (the first Magic Kingdom restaurant to offer wine and beer—dinner only); Italian Via Napoli Ristorante e Pizzeria; German Karamelle-Küche (all things caramel); Pollo Campero (chicken and more); La Cava del Tequilla; Kouzzina by Kat Cora (comfort food from the famed female chef); Kona Island Sushi Bar; and the new Chef’s Table at Flying Fish Café. ‘Foodie’ insiders specifically return to Walt Disney World every fall for the tasty Epcot International Food & Wine Festival.

Fantasmic! Show Hollywood Studios Photo by David Roark


Couples without kids will enjoy bar hopping (without drinking and driving!) at hotspots like The Wave at Contemporary Resort (where all wines are in screwtop bottles and organic beers are big); hip Rix Lounge; cocktails and tapas at Coronado Springs Resort; tiny La Cava del Tequila in Epcot’s Mexico Pavilion; sparkling prosecco and more at Tutto Gusto; pub grub, drinks, and entertainment at the Rose & Crown (don’t miss an evening there if the Hat Lady is entertaining); and Victoria Falls, with its signature South African margarita at Animal Kingdom Lodge. Kids and kids at heart will want to head to Epcot’s Club Cool, where those in-the-know get free samples of eight soft drinks from around the world (it’s sponsored by Coca-Cola).

And Be Very Disney

More than a dozen varied and in-depth Disney tours are reasonably priced and provide a backstage behind-the-scenes way to be very Disney. The half-day “Keys to the Kingdom Tour” is just $74 (ages 16 and up only), with visits to themed lands and backstage—including lunch. The all-ages “Family Magic Tour” is just two hours and $34 (ages three and up and no charge for those under three), providing a primer to first-timers with children as they (literally) skip through magical lands. A “Grand Voyage” luxury boat trip aboard the luxurious 52-foot Grand 1 Sea Ray affords spectacular views and is even offered during the “Wishes” fireworks display ($520 per hour for up to 18 people).

For More Info

The Walt Disney World website, www.disneyworld. com, is the most comprehensive planning tool available, including lots of insider tips and pricing. ■

Be An ‘Unofficial’ Insider

Known simply as the “Big Book” by insiders, The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World weighs in at almost 850 pages and provides detailed insider information to first-timers and veterans alike. The beloved “Touring Plans” are worth the price of the book on their own, but there’s much more. The 2013 edition includes how to cut Disney wait times in line by four hours a day and the latest scoop on Universal’s “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™.” Fans of the book may also want to consider: Mini-Mickey: The Pocket-Sized Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World; The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World with Kids; The Unofficial Guide Color Companion to Walt Disney World; and Beyond Disney: The Unofficial Guide to Universal Orlando, SeaWorld, and the Best of Central Florida. The “Unofficial” series also includes guides to Disneyland, Disneyland Paris, Las Vegas, Washington, D.C., cruises, and more. MARCH 2013 | TRAILBLAZER





NASCAR Travel Revs It Up




RV camping at Hellmans Campground at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Concord, North Carolina. Photo by Lynn Seldon





. With a fan base of millions of people (about a third of the nation’s adult population), a single NASCAR race often draws bigger crowds than a Super Bowl, NBA finals game, and World Series game combined. In fact, NASCAR is the Number One spectator sport in the nation, with an average attendance of about 100,000 fans per NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event. That’s a lot of varied vehicles heading to races many weekends from spring to fall! NASCAR fans are part of a fun and fueled driving culture. A Simmons National Consumer Survey revealed NASCAR fans own more vehicles, drive further distances, and simply like starting their assorted engines more than non-fans—to the tune of 25-50 percent more in most categories. Anyone driving America’s highways sees that the roads are filled with vehicles sporting stickers with one- and twodigit numbers stuck somewhere—and often more than once. Those numbers indicate the favorite NASCAR driver of the vehicle’s owner and, frequently, that vehicle is headed to another big-time NASCAR race—along with lots of other racing fans. Quite simply, travel to NASCAR races is a very big—and fun—deal. Nick Kelly, Manager of Business Communications at NASCAR, says, “Most NASCAR fans travel many miles to attend our events.” Once there, Kelly adds, NASCAR travel means much more than watching exciting races. From pre-race tailgating to souvenir buying and more at popular Fan Fests, as well as post-race revels, NASCAR travel is truly an American tradition.

Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Concord, North Carolina. Photo by Lynn Seldon


“Serious fans know where next week’s race will take place and precisely how their favorite driver is doing in the season-long points chase,” says Jay Ahuja, author of Speed Dreams. “And nearly all of them will gladly travel to every race they can get to,” adds Ahuja, who notes that NASCAR statistics show that about 40 percent of fans are female. The NASCAR Sprint Cup racing (and travel) season lasts from February through November and currently involves 20-plus tracks in more than a dozen different states from coast to coast. This geographical diversity provides lots of times and tracks to attend one or more races.


As outlined in Ahuja’s book and in many other resources (including, the options for NASCAR travel are incredibly diverse both at the various tracks and with nearby attractions. From “Where Racing Lives” outside Charlotte in North Carolina’s Cabarrus County (see “Where Racing Lives”) all the way out to the tasty wine country of California’s Sonoma Valley, NASCAR travel means so much more than simply watching an exciting race or two.

Pit crews working on the cars at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Concord, North Carolina. Photo by Lynn Seldon MARCH 2013 | TRAILBLAZER 41

For many, Charlotte Motor Speedway (www. is the NASCAR travel destination. Nestled in the very heart of the motorsports industry, the speedway annually hosts three major Sprint Cup Series race weekends—two in May (NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race and the Coca-Cola 600) and one in October (the Bank of America 500). However, it’s not just the races that make Charlotte so special. “This is the only place in the world where you can completely immerse yourself in a motorsports experience,” says Scott Cooper, Vice President of Communications at Charlotte Motor Speedway. “The speedway hosts one-of-a-kind race events that are so much more than just the competition on the track. Every weekend is a true spectacle, with concerts, pre-race show stunts, and a state fair-type fan zone [Fan Fest] near the main entrance. And, with more than 6,000 affordable camping spaces within sight of the track [as well as exciting infield RV sites], it’s so convenient for fans.” Cooper adds that, as a Charlotte-area bonus, virtually every major team shop—from Hendrick Motorsports to Roush Fenway Racing to Richard Childress Racing (over in Lexington barbecue country)—is located within a short drive of the speedway. The speedway offers tours that start right from the track, as well as trips to downtown Charlotte to experience the famed NASCAR Hall of Fame (www. In addition, ride-along and drive programs in real NASCAR vehicles reaching up to 160 miles per hour and more on the fabled track are offered through programs like the Richard Petty Driving Experience (www.drivepetty. com), which is also available at many locations nationwide. “Charlotte Motor Speedway is simply unmatched when it comes to motorsports entertainment,” Cooper concludes. “Mayor” Harry Wiley agrees. Harry has been camping at Charlotte Motor Speedway since 1979 and serves as the honorary mayor of bustling Hellman’s Campground—just across from the track—each spring and fall. He and his wife Judy, who he met at Bristol Motor Speedway, were married

With 160,000+ fans at NASCAR events, Bristol Motor Speedway ( is another very popular choice. Located on the Tennessee/Virginia border, Bristol typically welcomes fans from all 50 states and a dozen or more countries. “We have two sets of caverns for exploring within 15 minutes of the speedway and the Holston River with some of the best trout and smallmouth fishing in the southeast is just 20 minutes away,” says Kevin Triplett, vice president of communications. And, as with

A Dozen Favorite Race Cities

6 INDIANAPOLIS—as vibrant a downtown as there is on

from Speed Dreams, by Jay Ahuja

5 KANSAS CITY—another surprising race destination with

—THINGS TO DO AWAY FROM THE TRACK 12 RICHMOND—history buffs will absolutely love this town.

11 DAYTONA—the beach is just the beginning. 10 ATLANTA—nightlife and pro sports are why it’s also

known as “Hotlanta.” 9 LAS VEGAS—if you like casino gambling, this city moves way up the list. 8 MIAMI—South Beach nightclubs and Miami Beach bikinis. What more can you ask for? 7 FORT WORTH—area museums, attractions, nightclubs, and restaurants are astounding. 42

in 1993 and have come to the Charlotte races together ever since. The Johnson City, Tennessee, residents host an annual campground meal that has grown to more than 50 people over the years. Harry says he thinks of his campground friends as family and he can’t wait to come back to his NASCAR home away from home twice a year, saying, “It’s the people and the fellowship. If you’ve never experienced it, it’s truly a feeling of homecoming.” Richmond International Raceway ( is definitely another favorite long-time “home” for many NASCAR fans. “We have hosted NASCAR’s top series since 1953,” says Dennis Bickmeier, president of Richmond International Raceway. “We’re a long-time favorite of the fans, drivers, race officials, and media.” RIR hosts two NASCAR race weekends each year, which includes the NASCAR Nationwide Series race on Friday nights and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on Saturday night (all RIR races are held “under the lights”). Bickmeier says RIR is another popular track with RVers and, with its central location, Richmond-area attractions also draw race fans to stay for several days. The possibilities include theme parks like Busch Gardens and King’s Dominion, Colonial Williamsburg, the Blue Ridge Mountains, Virginia Beach, Washington, D.C., and all of the historical attractions right in Richmond.


the circuit.

plenty to do and see. 4 PHOENIX—the Grand Canyon alone makes this a trip worth making. 3 CHARLOTTE—nowhere else has as many race-related attractions [including the NASCAR Hall of Fame downtown and many NASCAR team HQs and garages out in Cabarrus County (“Where Racing Lives”) and beyond]. 2 SONOMA—San Francisco is a short drive away and wine country is a great excuse to leave the kids at home. 1 CHICAGO—an unbelievable city with world class museums, attractions, restaurants, and nightlife.

many NASCAR tracks and travelers—Triplett says about 60 percent of those attending the race camp out at or near the track (mostly in RVs). Combining NASCAR excitement with world-class wines is a tasty possibility out west, thanks to the location of Sonoma Raceway ( just 35 minutes from San Francisco. Situated in the heart of wine country, they offer more than 1,600 campsites at six different campgrounds, with possible camper views including the packed track and Sonoma’s rolling countryside and vineyards. Of course, nearby vineyards and wine-focused restaurants continue to provide perfect pairings for NASCAR travelers. Last season, they began offering post-race movies at 50 Acres campground to rave reviews. The raceway partnered with Santa Rosa’s Starry Movie Nights to bring an inflatable screen to the campground, with race fans getting to vote for their chosen movie (among car-themed and family-favorite options) on the raceway’s Facebook page. In between the west and east coasts, many other tracks continue to attract veteran NASCAR travelers and many first-timers destined to become hooked. Though all of the tracks welcome RVers, Daytona International Speedway (, Talladega Superspeedway (, Chicagoland Speedway (, and Martinsville Speedway(www.martinsvillespeedway. com) have proven to be particularly popular season after season with seriously hooked and hooked-up RVers. “My buddies knew I was hooked when I bought a $500 scanner, intercom, and headphone set that allows a friend and me to talk to each other as we watch the race and to listen to the drivers and crew members communicate,” says Speed Dreams author Ahuja. “Once you’ve tried it, there’s no better way to watch a race.”

Ahuja says he loves donning his gear at any NASCAR track, in that each venue and nearby attractions offer something unique. “Unique facilities with their own quirks and nostalgia make any sport better. If they all look the same, why not stay home and watch the races on TV?” Ahuja asks.


Any race weekend sees hundreds of RVs in the parking lots well before—and after—the actual race. That’s because thousands of NASCAR fans attend a large number of races in their RVs. “Did you ever wonder why so many race fans take recreational vehicles to the race and why they seem to have more fun than everyone else?” asks Ahuja. He says it’s because of the camaraderie between RVers, the great seats often provided atop RVs, the ability to beat the crowds to a race (often a day or more in advance), and wait out postrace traffic—all with the comforts of home. Lots of campers at Charlotte Motor Speedway have made the infield their home away from home, with fabled Turn One providing a perfect example every race. That’s where you’ll find long-time NASCAR fans like Bill “Couchman” Montgomery. Driving from North Carolina barbecue country in Lexington, Couchman has been coming to Charlotte since 1978 and is famed for setting up an array of couches overlooking the turn action for all to enjoy. Nearby, infield campers Tom and Severina Parker from Trinity, North Carolina, welcome long-time and new friends to a sturdy homebuilt platform with incredible views of the race (and great food). “What we both love most is the sense of family and such tight friendships,” says Severina. Exciting NASCAR racing in great places has made for a travel combination that’s hard to beat. Just start your RV’s engine—but leave the speeding to the NASCAR drivers! ■

Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Concord, North Carolina. Photo by Lynn Seldon MARCH 2013 | TRAILBLAZER





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$399/6 WEEK STAY


$499/6 WEEK STAY




*Subject to availability. Reservations required. Rates based on a standard site. Stays of 30 days or less are subject to $3 per day resort fee. Electric not included for stays of 30 days or longer. Rates do not include taxes. Amenities vary by resort. Cannot be combined with any other offers or promotions. Rates exclusively for members of Thousand Trails, NACO, Mid-Atlantic, Leisure Time and Outdoor World. Offer not valid on holidays and special events; certain restrictions may apply. Two week maximum stay per resort at discounted rate.















2013 SEASON $199/WEEK


2013 SEASON $299/WEEK




*Subject to availability. Reservations required. Rates based on a standard site. Stays of 30 days or less are subject to $3 per day resort fee. Electric not included for stays of 30 days or longer. Rates do not include taxes. Amenities vary by resort. Cannot be combined with any other offers or promotions. Rates exclusively for members of Thousand Trails, NACO, Mid-Atlantic, Leisure Time and Outdoor World. Offer not valid on holidays and special events; certain restrictions may apply. Two week maximum stay per resort at discounted rate.







wisconsin illinois & indiana 6 WEEK STAY FOR ONE LOW PRICE MAY 1 - JUNE 15 OR SEPTEMBER 6 - CLOSING




INDIAN LAKES, BATESVILLE, IN yukon trails, lyndon station, WI




Wisconsin properties: Arrowhead and Plymouth $499 for 4 Week Stay, May 1- June 15 or September 6 - Closing Yukon Trails $299 for a 6 Week Stay, May 1 - June 15 or September 6 - Closing

Tranquil Timbers Tranquil Timbers is a peaceful place to relax, see nature’s beauty and just have fun! Located on a seventy-five mile long peninsula that is known as one of the nation’s premier vacation destinations with 5 state parks and 10 lighthouses, Tranquil Timbers will provide a vacation to remember!



*Subject to availability. Reservations required. Rates based on a standard site. Stays of 30 days or less are subject to $3 per day resort fee. Electric not included for stays of 30 days or longer. Rates do not include taxes. Amenities vary by resort. Cannot be combined with any other offers or promotions. Rates exclusively for members of Thousand Trails, NACO, Mid-Atlantic, Leisure Time and Outdoor World. Offer not valid on holidays and special events; certain restrictions may apply. Two week maximum stay per resort at discounted rate.






Reader Service

Free Product Information For product information, complete the Fast Facts card circling no more than 25 numbers, and drop in the mail. You can also visit our website www.trailblazermagazine. net for links to our advertisers’ websites. FF# Advertiser


105 The Bradford Exchange...................19 116 Carefree RV Resorts........................61 106 DirectSat TV....................................64 101 Dream Giveaway.............................33 104 Equity LifeStyle..........................46-49 118 FirstStreet Perfect Choice................23 160 FirstStreet Walk-In Tub ..................17 129 FirstStreet WOW Computer ...........29 132 GEICO.............................................68 137 Answers on page 64

DOWN ACROSS 1 Gardener caste 1 Sea (Fr.) 4 Amer. Standard Version (abbr.) 2 Case or box (Fr.) 3 Fluidity unit 7 Inlet 4 Endeavor 10 Pledge 5 Wither 11 Social affair 6 Seaweed 12 Old-fashioned oath 7 Portuguese coin 14 Vega (2 words) 8 Shame 16 Concerning (2 words) 9 Rhine tributary 17 3 (Rom. numeral) 10 Fetish 18 Pueblo Indian 13 Month abbr. 20 Office of Economic 15 Orkney fisherman’s hut Development (abbr.) 19 Distress signal 21 Feminine (abbr.) 21 Noted psychiatrist 22 Universe (pref.) 23 Admonish 24 King of Athens 24 Insult 28 Plant slip 25 Eng. cathedral city 31 Wings 26 Orgy 32 Twitch 27 Pose 34 In the past 29 Alas 35 Brain ridge 30 New (pref.) 37 Hunting cry 33 Grain beetle larva 39 Polish border river 36 Salt (Fr.) 41 Family member 42 Hawaiian fish 38 New sugarcane shoot 40 Blacksnake 44 Tag 42 Angola (abbr.) 46 Uncle (Scot.) 43 Nut 49 Disease (pref.) 45 Tree stump 51 Immense 46 Ass or donkey (Ger.) 53 Joyous 47 Polynesian spirit 54 Former cloth measure 48 Loop trains 55 Poultry 50 Harem room 56 According to (2 words) 52 Pronoun 57 Female ruff 58 Guido’s note (2 words) 50


128 SkyMed............................................67 124 Winnebago.........................................2

Answers on page 64



housand Trails has partnered with a number of popular brands to provide you with exclusive members-only savings. Below you will find our latest special offers available to you. Please log into the member section of the Thousand Trails website at to take advantage of these great deals!

Exclusive Hertz Program When you rent with Hertz, you can take advantage of special yearround savings through the Hertz Membership Benefits Program. By using the Thousand Trails discount code, you can save whether you reserve online or by phone.

Exclusive iDine Savings Simply register any credit or debit card and dine at a restaurant on the program. Afterwards, complete a quick dining review about your experience within 30 days. The more you dine, the higher the percentage you can earn, up to 15%! Visit for details and to enroll. 15% off your order of $49 or more. Get all your pet’s food and supplies delivered to your door with’s Auto Ship program. It’s the easiest way to shop for all the top brands of pet food (137 brands and counting!), flea & tick preventatives, treats, toys, cat litter, crates, collars, beds, bowls, pet meds, and so much more (16,000 top-quality pet products in all)! (This coupon is valid on everything in our store, except: vet diet foods, prescription and free shipping items, and gift certificates. One time use per customer. Only one promotion code can be applied per order. Not for use with any loyalty or other reward websites.) Discount Code: BLAZER15

TCI Thousand Trails members receive discounts on Michelin tires through the Equity LifeStyle Properties Advantage program currently in place with TCI. TT members should call 1-888-532-6435 and reference the Equity Advantage program to receive discounts. RV Parts, Accessories and TT Gear 10% off all your purchases for the first year! Get all of your RV supplies and Lifestyle products all in one great store at an affordable price. We look to make your RV experience the best it can be. That’s why we offer great products at great prices delivered to your doorstep. Over 1,000 valuable products for your RV, Boat or Home and growing every day! Sign in as a Travelers Club Member and get additional savings with travel and special promotions all year. MyRVMarket is the Exclusive Distributor of the powerful and environmentally safe Nature-Zyme products. Join the Travelers Club today at and see what’s in it for you!


Exclusive Coleman Discount Thousand Trails members can now save 15% on their online purchases of tents, camping stoves and more! Trusted by veterinarians and pet lovers alike, NationalPetPharmacy. com is fully licensed and Vet-VIPPS certified for safety as well as quality. Our FDA/EPA approved pet meds are the same ones you get from your vet – but conveniently delivered to your door. Thousand Trails members save $5 on a $20 order with Discount Code: BLAZER5

Rand McNally The first GPS designed specifically for RVers. Special member discount. Thousand Trails is offering our members a special discount offer on all Rand McNally RVND GPS products. Visit for more information.







... magazine. I have a 28-foot, 2005 Four Winds 5000 and have had problems with chalking from the roof. Last year I asked Giant RV about it and they recommended a product (but I don’t remember the name) which instructed me to put a thin coating on a clean roof with a sponge mop. I did that twice. Now the roof is chalking again and even with the dew in the mornings. I live in southern California where there is no rain from May until whenever. But now when it rains, the chalking is even worse. I went to another RV supply store and they have a product called Best Roof coating. It calls for it to be put on and just hosed off, however I didn’t buy it. I read that you recommend Dicor. Which is better? I really need a long lasting coating, or as long as possible. Thank You, George E. Rushe Ontario, CA

A: George, Yes, there are many products on the market. The Dicor system that you are referencing in the Jan/Feb 2013 TrailBlazer issue would be the longest lasting coating that I can suggest, short of replacing the entire rubber roof. I have used the Dicor system for many years and it is the best I’ve seen thus far. Again, proper preparation is the key to longevity. The Dicor cleaner/activator that comes in quarts is part number PR-CRP-Q. One quart should be plenty for your 28-foot motorhome. The one gallon acrylic coating, part number RP-CRC-1, covers about 125 square feet. That being said, you will need two gallons to complete the job on your roof. You will need 3-4 days of good weather as the cleaner/primer needs to dry overnight and a few more days is needed for the coating to dry. Please, be very careful up on that roof!





... we have used the toilet in our motorhome only to discover that we forgot to turn on the water pump. Recently, we were camping with some new friends and discovered that they have a water pump switch in their bathroom. We were immediately envious. Although the manufacturer installed their pump switch, it got me thinking whether there is a way I could install a switch in our bathroom. Please advise. Thanks, Brian Cobalt Seattle, WA

A: Brian, it is possible to add the switch to the pump in your bathroom! It may not be easy, and it will hinge on whether or not you can run a set of wires from the OEM switch to the switch that you will need to install in the bathroom. You will need to change the OEM switch to a double pole; single throw switch and you will need the same switch in the bathroom. The switch in the bathroom will need a 12-volt positive wire run to it from the nearest source. The other two wires will need to be run to the other switch. You should be able to find a wiring diagram for this on the Internet. After it’s finished, you will be able to turn the pump either on or off from either switch. If you are not able to run wires from one switch to the other, you could use an on/off switch in the bathroom. Find a nearby 12-volt positive source and run to one side of the switch and from the switch directly to the positive side of the water pump. The water pump may very well be closer to the bathroom and make this possible. The only drawback is that you would have to use this same switch to turn the pump off when leaving the bathroom.



... 2000 Cardinal fifth wheel with two axles. I used it extensively while my children lived at home, and now my wife and I use it 10-12 times a year and still love the camping time. I’m a little worried about the tires on it. Is there a “shelf” life for tires? They have good tread on them, but they are over 12 years old, and I would hate to have a four flats on a road trip. I don’t notice any visible cracks on them, but they have been exposed to sun, rain, and heat over the years. I live in the Northwest, and in most cases, the trailer may sit through the winter after its been ‘winterized.” Any comments or expertise you may have will be most appreciated. Thank you, Joe Baca

A: Hi, Joe! This all too common question is extremely important for overall safety and I appreciate the inquiry. “Is there a shelf life on tires”, you ask? Without a doubt, YES!! ALL tires have a lifespan, no matter what size the tire might be. The general rule of thumb is seven years for an RV tire. There are several reasons for this. Tires tend to sit for extended periods of time with heavy weight resting on each tire. Most air sources for filling tires originate from compressors, which contain moisture in the air tank. When air is added to the tires, the moisture permeates the interior rubber and can destroy the steel belts and causes tread separation over time. Newer technology, such as nitrogen, which is an inert gas, does not contain moisture and should extend the life of the tire, but it is unclear just how long this life extension time truly is. In addition, smog and UV light is also responsible for shortening the life of a tire. Hot pavement is also a major killer for old, compromised tires. As excess heat builds up in the tire, the tread separates and can cause a damaging blow out. Theoretically, if you stored your RV on jacks, filled the tires with nitrogen and kept the tires covered, they should extend the life another 1-2 years. There is no way to tell when a tire is going to blow. If you examine in-between the treads and find cracking this is a good indication that the tires are on borrowed time. All tires are date coded. Take a look at the sidewall and you will find a DOT code that contains a series of numbers and letters. The last number is the date that tire was manufactured. You have been extremely lucky that you have not had a problem…yet! That being said, I strongly advise you do not make another trip without replacing all of your RV tires, including the spare!



... Adventurer. On the very first outing everything seemed to work great except for the water heater. The first night worked perfectly on gas. The next day we noticed there was no hot water. I turned the switch off and back on to see if it would reset. I then checked all of the fuses to see it there was a blown fuse, which there was not. Then it dawned on me that there was no red light at the on/off switch as they’re usually was just before the burner ignited. Is this a problem with the circuit board? We did have hook-ups so we were able to finish our weekend trip, but I’d like to solve this dilemma before the springtime. Thanks Bill, Kevin Black Prescott, AZ

A: Kevin, what you have described is a common problem with the newer Atwood Water Heaters. As a safety precaution, Atwood started installing a thermal cut off at the thermostat just above the main burner in case of a flame flashback. Spider webs in the main burner can cause this. Unfortunately, the thermo cut offs fail for no particular reason. Once they fail, there is no power to the circuit board. The part number for the new Atwood Thermo Cut Off is 93866 and costs about $15 on the Internet. There is a spade connector on either end of the thermo cut off so they can be easily changed. Usually, they come in a pack of two so you will have an extra for the next time you encounter such a problem. If this problem occurs on a regular basis, you might want to take the RV in for service to be sure there is not some other problem going on. Thanks for your inquiry. ■


Bill Gehr The back of our RV reads, “We haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on our list!” After owning and operating Bill’s RV Service in Ventura, CA for 34 years, Bill Gehr and his wife, Jenn, are now living the dream of the full-time RV lifestyle. Bill is a Master RV Technician and has starred in the DVD series The ABC’s of RVs, and RV Today on RFDTV. As a team, Bill and Jenn Gehr are technical contributors for a myriad of RV magazines and travel the USA with their two Boston Bulldogs and are avid cyclists and hikers. MARCH 2013 | TRAILBLAZER


Preserve Services Directory* | March 2013 PRESERVE SERVICES DIRECTORY - NORTHWEST

NORTHWEST OREGON BEND/SUNRIVER | 541-593-8494 Annual/Extended Stay - We still have some open sites available for annual use. Stop worrying about space available in beautiful Bend/Sunriver with your own site and come and enjoy all we have to offer year-round. From skiing, snowshoeing, and snowmobiling in the winter to fishing, hiking and festivals in the summer. Please call Bobbie or Julie at the Preserve.

Short-Term Rental - Cabins, cottages and yurts available for rent year-round, call for quote. Special Events - Perfect location for your family reunions, rallies and birthday picnics. Packages are available for renting our winter lodge for that special birthday. The main lodge is available for weddings, banquets and conferences. We also welcome ski clubs and snowmobile clubs. Call Anne or send email to PACIFIC CITY 503-965-6200 (Preserve Office) 503-965-6442 (Ranger Station) Annual/Extended Stay - No longer a need to move your RV offsite for one or more years, plus the flexibility to occupy the unit up to 210 nights without contract use restrictions and then stay longer with reservations. Decorate your preferred site or add a storage shed if desired. Order your new Cavco Cedar Cabin and custom design the interior, select your preferred campsite and schedule delivery. Financing available. Contact Ginny to make an appointment. Short-Term Rental - Off-Season Rental Cabins available for monthly program. Contact Resort Manager for details. Special Events - Awesome coastal weather, beach access, clamming, crabbing, beach-combing, professional and friendly service, campsites, rental units and gazebo. We host parties, club rallies, reunions, weddings and retreats for all group outings. A group consists of 4 or more campsites/rentals or any combination thereof. Contact the preserve for more information. On-Site/Dry Storage - Save on gas and take advantage of our RV storage program. $50 for 4 weeks, $300 for 26 weeks or $550 for 52 weeks. Dry storage space is limited. SEASIDE 503-738-0626 (Preserve Office) 503-738-5292 (Rentals) Annual/Extended Stay - The Oregon Coast! Enjoy your own personal site for your RV. Home base for full-timers, improved landscape options available, personalize your site – add a storage shed and/or deck. You no longer need to move your RV. Call Christopher or Barry at the preserve. Short-Term Rental - Discounted short-term rentals available for two week and monthly stays. Great rates for Monday-Thursday midweek stays. Call for our current specials. Our cabins are available all year long.


Short-Term Rental - Yurts, cabins and trailers available to fit your budget. WHALERS REST 541-867-6078 (Preserve Office) 541-867-3100 (Storage) Annual/Extended Stay - Enjoy the beautiful Oregon Coast on your own personal site at Whalers Rest. Leave your rig year-round and occupy up to 210 days per year. Don’t have an RV or want a “vacation home”? We have former vacation rental trailers available for purchase and placement in the personal site program. Call Denise or Shari at the preserve for more information. Special Events - Beautiful setting on the central Oregon coast, 18 rental units, including two new cabins and a very large garden home. Large meeting area and kitchen facilities. Parties and meetings of all sizes. Call preserve for details. SuperHost not available June 15-Sept. 15. WASHINGTON BIRCH BAY | 360-371-7432 Annual/Extended Stay - Play by the bay longer with stays beyond your membership days and enjoy the sun, not the grays, at Birch Bay. Space may still be available for your Personal Site. Purchase a vacation home, while they last, or bring your own. Monthly stays limited and also available at just $450 month, plus utilities. Come experience the beauty of the true Northwest. Contract Chandra at the preserve. CHEHALIS | 360-262-9489 Annual/Extended Stay - Enjoy your own year-round private site in beautiful Chehalis. There’s no need to move your RV off-site. You can occupy your site for 210 days without reservations and then stay longer with reservations. Contract Brenda Roza for an appointment. Short-Term Rental - We have monthly rentals for 1-4 months for $475 per month, plus utilities. We also have rental cabins and trailers offering daily and weekly rates. Special Events - Perfect venue for your family reunion, church campout, picnic, party, school event or retreat. Rental units, RV sites, picnic areas, catering, day-use activities and amenities can be all yours with our SuperHost program. Our lodge is available off-season for weddings, banquets, parties, retreats, or conferences. Call preserve or send email On-Site/Dry Storage - Storage: $45 per month or $180 for 6 months. Call Ranger Don. GRANDY CREEK | 360-826-3554 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual site available! $1,950, please call the preserve for details.

SOUTH JETTY 541-997-8296 (Preserve Office)

LA CONNER | 360-466-3112 Annual/Extended Stay - Your very own site on our beautiful resort is waiting for you. Spend your free time on the Skagit Bay, walking on the beach, photographing the resident Bald Eagles, and relaxing in our spa. We have limited sites available so hurry. Our Annual Program now has 210-day usage. Please call Nancy or Matthew at the preserve.


*Information subject to change

On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry storage for $60 per month. Get two free months with our yearly rate of $600.


541-997-8333 (Rentals) Annual/Extended Stay - Extended Stay program now available. Use it any 210 days and store your rig year-round. Contact Preserve Manager for details.

LEAVENWORTH 509-763-2020 | 800-353-1700 Short-Term Rental - A snowmobiler’s paradise, we receive an average of 10 feet of snow annualyl. Just across from our preserve we have access to over 200 miles of snowmobile trails. We have rentals that include a Log House that sleeps 24, a Chalet that sleeps 8, four cabins that sleep 4 to 5 and four lodge rooms that sleep four, plus our RV sites In our Timber View and Lake View areas. LITTLE DIAMOND | 800-994-6654 Special Events - Granite Lodge: Two full kitchens, dining for large groups, sleeps 20+, adjacent RV and tent sites, spa and sauna, satellite TV. Contact preserve for more information. LONG BEACH | 360-642-3091 Annual/Extended Stay - Long Beach is only minutes away from the grand Pacific Ocean, surrounded by gorgeous nature and a rich history of pioneers past. Don’t miss out on your chance to have your own place at the beach. You can have your own personal RV site where your rig can stay year-round and you can occupy your rig for 210 days out of that year for the low price of $2,100! No more hassle storing your rig and just think of all the money you will save on gas. We are also introducing a special 3-month rate during the off-season; stay 3 months for only $350 per month or $425 per month during the off season. Call Kate at the preserve for details. Short-Term Rental - Feel at home in one of our Vacation Trailers or lovely Thousand Trails Cabins both with fully stocked kitchens. Call the preserve for rates or make your reservations online. Special Events - Planning a reunion, wedding, special event or a trip with a bunch of friends and family? Long Beach is the place for you! We have plenty of RV and tent sites as well as cabins and trailers available for rent. We are right off the beach and close to historic downtown Long Beach. For more information, call Kate at the Preserve Office. On-Site/Dry Storage - Save on gas with our dry storage sites. Available year-round at the low price of $50 a month or get two months free when you sign up for a year for only $500. Call the Preserve Office for details. MT. VERNON | 360-724-4811 Annual/Extended Stay - Come enjoy our preserve with beautiful forest settings and views of the mountains where wildlife parade through. Relax in your own personal site now up to 210 days. Walk the trails or relax in the large swimming pool and spa. Please call Kelly King at the preserve to get your site. OCEANA | 360-289-3504 Annual/Extended Stay - New Reduced Prices! Walk down to the beach for some quiet time away from all the hustle and bustle. Park your RV 12 months at Oceana. Stay up to 210 days a year with no time out. For the BEST PRICE on the WA coast for a full hook-up site with 50-amp power call Dale Graham at the preserve. Short-Term Rental - A limited number of sites are available starting at $350 per month, plus elec. for next summer season. Call Dale Graham at the preserve. On-Site/Dry Storage - RV Storage $40 per month without electric (dry) or $50 per month with electric (limited sites with electricity and may be subject to availability).

PARADISE 360-985-2121 (Preserve Office) 360-985-2756 (Ranger Station) Annual/Extended Stay - Save on fuel, extend your stay at Paradise for $550 per month, or consider leaving your rig year-round with an annual lease. Call the preserve for more information.


Short-Term Rental - Leave your RV at home and come stay in our comfortable Panabode Cedar Cabins. Full kitchen, sleeps 6. Call preserve to make reservations. Please call Nancy or Matthew at the preserve.

On-Site/Dry Storage - RV Storage $40 per month without electric (dry) or $50 per month with electric (limited sites with electricity and may be subject to availability). THUNDERBIRD 360-794-4030 (Preserve Office) 360-794-8987 (Ranger Station) Annual/Extended Stay - We are now open year-round and have Annual Sites available. Come stay with us and explore the beautiful state of Washington. We also offer the Extended Stay Program at $575 per month, plus $35 electric fee. If interested, please call the Preserve Office. Short-Term Rental - Four (4) TT Rental Cabins available. For special off-season rates, please call the Preserve Office. On-Site/Dry Storage - RV Storage for $2.50 per day or $75 per month. Call the Preserve Office. BRITISH COLUMBIA, CANADA CULTUS LAKE | 604-858-3932 Annual/Extended Stay - We have both Standard and Value Annual Personal Sites available. From October 1-March31, each winter season, we offer month to month stays (not to exceed three (3) months at a time). If you are interested, contact Norman or Lisa at the Preserve Office. On-Site/Dry Storage - During the months of October to March each year we offer storage on our non-water sites at a daily, weekly, monthly or six-month rate. Check with the Preserve Office or Ranger Station if you’re interested. SOUTHWEST ARIZONA VERDE VALLEY | 928-634-8158 Annual/Extended Stay - Extend your stay with us for $99 a week plus tax. Extend by the month on a 30-amp for $350 or 50-amp for $425, plus electric. Annual sites start at $2,500 per year. Pick a lease package where you can stay 365 nights-Best Deal. For more information regarding our Extended Stay and Annual Lease programs, contact Scott Woolley at the preserve. Short-Term Rental - 29-foot trailers for $595 per month (includes electric). Cabins $1,000-1,250 per month (includes electric). Weekly housekeeping and linens, TV/VCR, satellite. Pet and non-pet units available. Call the preserve to reserve your unit. Dry Storage - Dry Storage available w/o electric for $50 per month or $425 per year, with electric for $90 per month or $775 per year. Call the preserve for details. CALIFORNIA IDYLLWILD 951-659-4097 (Preserve Office) 951-659-4137 (Ranger Station) 951-659-0698 (Recreation Office) Annual/Extended Stay - Annual lease as low as $2,195 per year (not including electricity). Keep your trailer/rig or motorhome on a site for 365 days per year! Please contact Preserve Manager for more details. MARCH 2013 | TRAILBLAZER




Short-Term Rental - Stay in the preserve on a month-to-month basis for as low as $575 per month, including water and electricity. We also have rental cabins!! Daily, weekly and by the month. Please contact the Preserve Manager at for more information. On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry Storage available for as little as $75 per month or $650 per year. Please contact the Preserve Office for more information on terms and conditions. LAKE MINDEN 530-656-2701 (Preserve Office) 530-656-2702 (Special Events) 530-656-2700 (Storage) Annual/Extended Stay - Variety of sites available – 1-3 year leases, sewered and non-sewered sites; utilities not included. Snowbird Program: $425 per month, plus electric, includes one honeywagon dump per week. Call the preserve for more information. On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry Storage: Quarterly for $120. Call the preserve for information LAKE OF THE SPRINGS | 530-692-1852 Annual/Extended Stay - Have your own personal site waiting for you. Call Renee for more information at (530) 692-3212. We also have sites available on a monthly basis, call (530) 692-1852. Special Events - Have your group gathering with us! Campsite and rental units are available. Call (530) 692-1852. On-Site/Dry Storage - Why haul your rig back and forth? We have dry storage for $50 per month. If you pay for one year, you get one month free. Call (530) 692-1852. MORGAN HILL 408-779-6396 (Preserve Office) 408-779-4932 (SuperHost) Annual/Extended Stay - Call the preserve to get the details on the best prices in the area for full hook-up and partial hook-up sites for stays up to 210 days in a year. On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry Storage: $85 per month and $792 per year. Call the preserve for more details. OAKZANITA 619-445-2835 (Preserve Office) 619-445-2515 (Ranger Station) Annual/Extended Stay - Gas prices got you down? Hate the hassle of setting up and taking down your RV? If you like to escape the hustle and bustle of your life then we have the program for you. You can have your own personal site and you can leave your rig 365 days a year, you can occupy your rig for up to 210 days a year. We offer a limited number of annual sites and due to gas prices they fill up fast. Call Sheila or Cheryl at the preserve for more information. Short-Term Rental - We offer rental cabins you can stay for the night or by the week. Call the preserve for prices. We also have a limited number of horse corrals available by the day or week. Call the preserve. On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry storage for only $450 per year, $65 per month or $40 per week. Call the Ranger Station for more information. PALM SPRINGS | 760-345-1682 Annual/Extended Stay - Rally groups welcome September through November and April through May. The preserve offers many activities, such as water aerobics, water volleyball, horseshoe pits, pickleball courts and a billiards room. Call the preserve for information.




PIO PICO | 619-421-0104 Annual/Extended Stay - Are you tired of moving from park to park every 2-3 weeks? Or moving your RV in and out of storage? Get our own personal site and leave your RV there all year long. Contact Dave D. at Preserve Office. Short-Term Rental - Are you going on vacation? We have Vacation Rental Trailers and cabins available for short-term stays. For more details please call the preserve. Special Events - Are you planning a group event, family reunion or sports banquet? We can accommodate all group sizes. Call preserve office to schedule event. On-Site/Dry Storage - Call Frank at x102 for more details and specials information. PONDEROSA | 530-642-5830 Annual/Extended Stay - Sign up for our new Annual Site program. Make a site yours for an entire year or up to 3 years! Eliminate storage costs and the hassle of moving your rig. Call Dominic at the preserve. Special Events - Plan your next special event with us along the beautiful American River. We can help you host up to 150 guests for your wedding, family reunion, rally, or other special event function. Make your event one to remember – host it at Ponderosa Resort! Call the preserve for more information. On-Site/Dry Storage - Call Kathy at the preserve for information. RANCHO OSO | 805-683-5686 Annual/Extended Stay - Short-term monthly FHU campsites at $749 per month, plus electric. Annual sites also available at special rates. Call the preserve or send email to Short-Term Rental - Check out our new reduced rates for our 29 and 30-foot trailers. Special Events - Reunions, youth groups, picnics, retreats, meetings. Private Chapel/Pavilion and courtyard available for events. Stay in cozy cabins, covered wagons or our full amenity kitchenette campers. Call the preserve for details. On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry Storage: $75 per month or $750 per year and save $150. Call the preserve for information. RUSSIAN RIVER 707-894-5321 (Preserve Office) 707-894-5355 (Special Events) Annual/Extended Stay - Annual sites are still available - only a couple left. Extended Stay $400 per month, plus electric; includes one honeywagon dump per week. For more information call the preserve. SAN BENITO 831-389-4477 (Ranger Station) 831-389-4478 (Special Events) Annual/Extended Stay - Both programs are available. We also have Getaway Cabins and other cabins and vacation trailers all for the asking. Give us a call and see when we can fit you in. We also have space available for the public and we have tent sites too. For any questions, contact our Ranger Station. Special Events - If you’re looking for that great place for family gatherings, youth groups, reunions, meetings, retreats, church gatherings or just your very own special event, such as birthdays or

Special Events - Large and small pavilion available for rental - must reserve. Clubhouse space available for rental - must reserve.

On-Site/Dry Storage - Call Ranger Station for details.

On-Site/Dry Storage - Yearly storage rates $350.

SNOWFLOWER | 530-389-8241 Annual/Extended Stay - Have a favorite camping area or site you prefer? Reserve a personal seasonal site anywhere in the preserve for only $388 per month. Seasonal sites available from May through October, weather permitting.

INDIANA INDIAN LAKES 812-934-5496 (Preserve & Marketing Office) Annual/Extended Stay - Annual Sites starting at just $1,200. Please call Charlene.

Short-Term Rental - Try something new and stay in one of our cabins or yurts! Cabins sleep four maximum and start at $71.20 per night mid-week, plus tax; yurts sleep 4-5 and start at $44 per night midweek, plus tax. Cabins and Yurts are only a short drive to exploring California’s historic Gold Country or gaming and nightlife In Reno, NV. The yurts have heaters and new mini-fridges for your convenience. Call preserve for information.

On-Site/Dry Storage - RV storage available starting at $35 per month. Quarterly, semi-annual, and annual rates available. Call Charlene at the preserve.

On-Site/Dry Storage - Storage sites available starting at $8 per day to $75 per month. Call the Ranger Station to check availability.

Short-Term Rental - We have 126 sites available (122 full hook-up, and 25 50-amp sites - 50-amp sites are $3 per night).

SOLEDAD CANYON 661-269-1740 (Preserve Office) 661-269-7038 (Special Events) Special Events - Have your rally, wedding, picnic, retreat or reunion at our beautiful preserve. Catering for up to 3,000 available. Call the preserve for information. On-Site/Dry Storage - On-site storage no longer available. Dry Storage $75 per month or $750 annual. Call the preserve for information. TURTLE BEACH | 209-239-0991 On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry storage available for $20 per week or $60 per month. WILDERNESS LAKES 951-672-4831 (Preserve Office) 951-672-7804 (Special Events/SuperHost) Annual/Extended Stay - Annual sites available. Fish from the back of your site! No reservations required. You can leave your RV on-site 365 days per year. You may occupy the site 210 days per year. Call Brandie or Dave at the preserve for more information. NEVADA LAS VEGAS 702-451-2719 (Preserve Office) 800-288-7245 (Rentals) 702-451-4647 (Storage) Annual/Extended Stay - Come HOME to your own private site in FUN City. Year-round sites available in four price ranges. Extended Stay monthly sites available from $475 per month. Call preserve for details. Short-Term Rental - Make your cabin and trailer reservations early; high demand in fall, winter and spring. Call the Rental Office for information. MIDWEST/NORTHEAST ILLINOIS PINE COUNTRY 815-547-5517 (Preserve & Marketing Office) Annual/Extended Stay - Annual sites available - rates $2,044. Monthly site rental (RV) - $425 per month. We offer weekly and midweek special rates also. Call preserve for details. Short-Term Rental - Public W/E/S - nightly rate - $43. Tent sites nightly $28.


anniversaries, contact Teri and we can get you on your way. So come and enjoy the natural beauty of San Benito.

HORSESHOE LAKES | 765-832-2487 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual Lease Sites are $1,500 for lakefront and $1,075 for non-lakefront.

Special Events - RV sites, meeting/banquet room, kitchen available for reunions, parties, church groups, weddings, etc. On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry storage available starting at $10 per week up to $300 annually. MAINE MOODY BEACH | 207-646-4586 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual Sites Available: Premium $2882, plus electric fee; Elite $3542, plus electric fee; membership required. Great sites still available. Close to sandy beaches, attractive, Portland ME and Portsmouth NH. Annual Cottages Available: 28’x12’ park models, sleeps 4 adults and 2 children, complete kitchen and bath, supplies. Own your own cottage to come to all season! Annual site fee required. Prices vary - contact manager for more information. Extended Stay Available: $535 per month - April, May, June September, October. Extended Stay available for 1000 per month July and August. Call Country Store for more information. Short-Term Rental - April 15-June 10 and September 5 to closing (Oct. 20). Spring or Fall - Shoulder Seasons, get away for a weekend or a week at Moody Beach. Call Country Store for special or look us up on line at Special Events - Moody Beach Is a great getaway for your group. Rallies and Reunions. Safari Field available. Contact us to book your group or party. On-Site/Dry Storage - $4 per day, $25 per week, $45 per month or $375 per year. Valid insurance and agreement required. MASSACHUSETTS GATEWAY TO CAPE COD | 508-763-5911 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual sites available for $2300. Vacation cottages for sale starting at $2500, plus site fee of $2400. Please call preserve for details. Short-Term Rental - Park Model rentals available starting at $60 per night (some pet units available). Call the preserve for more information and reservations. On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry Storage available $46 per month or $360 per year. Call the preserve or inquire at the Trading Post. MARCH 2013 | TRAILBLAZER




STURBRIDGE | 508-347-7156 Annual/Extended Stay - Annuals from $1740 to $2666 for lakeside and, new this year, seasonal sites for spring and fall for $500. Short-Term Rental - Five rental units available with nightly and weekly rates, 10 people per site. All you bring is linen and food. Amenities are free. Special Events - We have a beautiful conference center for all occasions nestled in beautiful Sturbridge. On-Site/Dry Storage - Off-site Storage: $20 per week; $45 per month; or $350 per year. MICHIGAN BEAR CAVE | 269-695-3050 Annual/Extended Stay - Limited annual sites still available. Call for rates. Just 90 minutes from Chicago and only 20 minutes to Michigan’s finest beaches. Reserve now and enjoy one of the most stunningly beautiful waterfront camp reserve sites available. Located on the St. Joseph River with boat launch and docks. Short-Term Rental - 1 and 2 bedroom park model rentals for $59 and $69 per night; 2-night minimum stay on weekends and 3-night minimum stay on holiday weekends. Linen rental for additional fee. 2-4 person, fully-equipped tent rentals available. Call for details. ST. CLAIR | 810-329-7129 Annual/Extended Stay - Beautiful sites, concrete pad and patio, paved road, metered 50-amp electric, water and sewer. Stay up to 180 nights and store your rig the rest of the year. $2,000 per year. Similar new sites with gravel pads and roads are only $1,500 per year. Contact Preserve Manager for details. NEW JERSEY CHESTNUT LAKE | 609-652-1005 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual Sites starting at $1,599; Monthly Sites from $500.

On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry Storage ONLY. Fees: $35 per month; $65 per quarter (yearly) $125 per 6 months; and $235 for one year. WILMINGTON | 937-382-5883 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual sites now available: $1,250$1,750. Call Amy for more information. Special Events - SuperHost Facility Rental: Family Lodge $400; Pavilion $100. Call preserve for more information. On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry Storage: $15 per week, $35 per month or $150 for six (6) months. Call the Ranger Station. PENNSYLVANIA CIRCLE M | 717-872-4651 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual Sites Available! Starting at $2,350, 210 days of occupancy; space is limited. GETTYSBURG FARM | 717-292-7191 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual Sites available. Call Jeff at the preserve office for information. Special Events - Two pavilions are available for your reunion, company picnic, wedding or party. These creekside pavilions are a popular gathering spot for your special functions. Call Jeff or Mary at the preserve. On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry Storage Rates: $20 weekly, $50 monthly and $300 yearly. Call the preserve or stop by the Trading Post.

On-Site/Dry Storage - Storage for $25 per week; $50 per month or $400 per year. LAKE & SHORE | 609-624-1494 Annual/Extended Stay - Limited Cottages available so make the call today.

On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry Storage Rates: $20 weekly, $50 monthly, $200 for six months or $375 per year. Call or stop by the Country Store during regular hours.

SEA PINES Annual/Extended Stay - Annual Sites available, starting at $2895.

PA DUTCH COUNTRY | 717-665-2500 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual site available - standard sites for $1825, plus metered electricity. Premium sites for $2200, plus metered electricity. Vacation Cottage site fee for $2100 per year. For more information, please call Joanne or Joan at the preserve.

NEW YORK RONDOUT VALLEY | 845-626-5521 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual sites start at $2,895; for other special, please call preserve. Special Events - Open air pavilion available to rent for special events. On-Site/Dry Storage - November-April: $25 per month; AprilOctober $45 per month or $396 for the year, if paid in full. OHIO KENISEE LAKE | 440-576-9030 Annual/Extended Stay - Lakefront and non-lakefront sites available. Please call the preserve for details. 58

Special Events - Rustic Barn, Pool Pavilion available for Family Reunions, Superhosts, and Get-togethers. If interested, please contact Linda Roberts for more information.

HERSHEY 717-867-1891 (Preserve Office) 717-867-3967 (Storage) Annual/Extended Stay - Annual Sites available at beautiful Hershey Preserve starting at $2,600. Call Kim at the preserve.

On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry storage available for $20 weekly, $50 per month or $400 per year.


Short-Term Rental - Elite site is $475 for a month-to-month and $425 per month for a standard site.


Short-Term Rental - 14 cabins available for rent. Call the preserve for details. Special Events - Don’t worry about the weather – our large building is available for rent. Building will accommodate square dance groups inside; also available for weddings and other events. For more information, please call Joanne or Joan at the preserve. On-Site/Dry Storage - Off-site Storage is available for $3 per day, $60 per month, and $375 per year. For more information, please call Joanne or Joan at the preserve. SCOTRUN | 570-629-0620 Annual/Extended Stay - Scotrun, in the beautiful Pocono Mountains,

has annual sites available starting at $1295. Scotrun is central to everything in the Poconos and easy access right off Route 80.

TIMOTHY LAKE RESORT NORTH 570-588-6631 (In Season) 570-588-1617 (Off Season) Annual/Extended Stay - Annual sites available. Seasonal Location near beautiful Bushkill Falls and the Delaware Water Gap. Annual Sites are $2185 which includes 30-50 amp service, sewer and water with metered electric; paved roads throughout resort. Limited amount of Used Cottages for sale also. Call resort directly. Short-Term Rental - Rental Cabins available May 1-October 28. Special Events - 150 Seat Indoor Entertainment Center for Events & Rental, Birthday Parties Packages, Seasonal Indoor Water Park also available for parties, Member Lounge with Televised Sporting Events including NFL Sunday Ticket. On-Site/Dry Storage - $20 weekly, $65 monthly, and $390 annually. TIMOTHY LAKE RESORT SOUTH 570-588-1617 (Year-round) Annual/Extended Stay - Annual sites available at a great year-round location near beautiful Shawnee Mountain and Bushkill Falls. Annual Sites are $2385 which includes large sites with 50-amp service, yearround sewer and water with metered electric, paved roads throughout and gated community. Includes 365 days of access with 230 days of usage to use as you want. Limited amount of used Cottages Available and New Cottage Sales. Call resort directly. Short-Term Rental - Rental Cabins available Year-round.

PEACE RIVER | 863-735-8888 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual sites available for $2280 per year, plus tax and electric. Extended stay/seasonal sites are also available: November $350; December $375, January $410; February $425; March $410; April $375. Discounts available for three months or more. Seasonal sites are 30-amp with water and electric. price includes one free honey wagon dump per week. Call Lee at the preserve for more details. Short-Term Rental - We have nine rental log cabins available, for nightly or monthly rental. On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry Storage $45 per month. Call the preserve for information. THREE FLAGS | 352-748-3870 (Preserve Office) Short-Term Rental - Vacation cottages available for rent. Special Events - We have a large clubhouse that may be rented out for special events. NORTH CAROLINA FOREST LAKE | 336-998-4135 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual sites are available! Don’t delay in securing yours now and start enjoying the convenience of annual site rental. Contact Preserve Office for current rate. Short-Term Rental - Cabins, cottages and short-term rentals are available. The longer you stay, the better the price! For rates and availability contact Barb Stanze at the Preserve Office.

Special Events - RV Rallies & RV Clubs Welcome. Prices Range from $24.99-$39.99 a night depending on size of group or rally. We are a Shawnee E-Ticket Center. Our guest can purchase tickets for all Winter Events and Summer Festivals and receive discounts for these events at the resort.

GREEN MOUNTAIN PARK | 828-757-4088 Annual/Extended Stay - Rates are $1,400 to $2,855. Call preserve for details.

On-Site/Dry Storage - $20 weekly, $65 monthly, and $390 annually. Space is Limited!

On-Site/Dry Storage - Storage available - $2 per day or $365 per year.

SOUTHEAST ALABAMA HIDDEN COVE | 205-221-7042 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual sites available - $2,150. For information please call the preserve. Short-Term Rental - Park Model Rentals $60 and $70 per night. For information, call the preserve. Special Events - Our lakefront Clubhouse and Pavilion are the perfect venues for family reunions, receptions, birthday parties, company events, church picnics, etc. We also have RV sites, tent sites and cabins. For details please call the preserve. On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry Storage available for $3 per day or $200 for 6 months. Call preserve for information. FLORIDA ORLANDO 352-394-5531 (Preserve Office) 352-394-7300 (Special Events)


On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry Storage Only - $400 per year or $50 per month. Contact preserve for details.

Annual/Extended Stay - Sites still available for extended stay and lease options. Leave your rig and not have to move every few weeks. Please call Beth-Ann McCourt for more details or ask for when you arrive at the preserve.

Short-Term Rental - Vacation cottages for sale at $4,495. LAKE GASTON | 252-586-4121 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual sites available. Rates from $1,950. Call the preserve for details. On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry storage available: $20 per week, $45 per month or $325 per year. Storage available for boats and RVs. For information, please call the preserve. SOUTH CAROLINA CAROLINA LANDING | 864-972-9892 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual sites available starting at $1,300 for current members. THE OAKS AT POINT SOUTH | 843-726-5728 Annual/Extended Stay - Come spend the season where it’s sunny at our beautiful spot close to Savannah, Charleston, and right next door to the historic Beaufort by the sea. Our rates are very reasonable $350 per month plus tax and electric. Call the preserve and book now. Easy access to/from I-95. On-Site/Dry Storage - We offer on-site storage at $150 per month, plus electric and taxes. MARCH 2013 | TRAILBLAZER




TENNESSEE CHEROKEE LANDING | 731-376-0935 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual sites available from $1,099 to $1,300 for the season for current members. Extended Stay sites are $300 for current members. Call the preserve to make your reservations. Short-Term Rental - We have campsites and rental cabins available. Call the preserve to make your reservations. NATCHEZ TRACE | 931-796-3212 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual sites still available - $1,020 to $1,380. Short-Term Rental - Mid-week cabin stay special - $99 Monday through Thursday. Limited Availability. Standard Cabins only. Special Events - Rallies Welcome! Large rental hall facilities available. On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry: $5 per day/$25 per month. TEXAS BAY LANDING | 940-683-3016 Annual/Extended Stay - Bay Landing is now your personal site for 12 months. *Annual Stay – stay up to 210 days a year with no time out. Limited spaces available. Honey Runs every Monday, Wednesday and Friday for $10, plus tax. No need to move your rig, we come to you! Contact the Ranger Station before 2 p.m. to put your name on the list. Don’t cut your weekend short with towing and setup. Save on Gas. No pulling! Please call Lynn. On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry Storage Only - $45, plus tax ($48.04). COLORADO RIVER | 979-732-8229 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual site leases available for part-time or full-time occupancy. Suitable for RV or park models. Also offering Summer Texan extended stays for members and the public for up to 5 months at market rate, plus metered electricity. For pricing and details about Annual sites or 55+ programs, call Marty or send email at On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry Storage available year-round; fenced secure area. Call the preserve or send email LAKE CONROE 936-856-7888 (Preserve Office) 936-856-3751 (Rental Office) Annual/Extended Stay - Come stay for a maximum of five months at a time on our Texan Program. The cost is $375 per month, plus electricity. We also have medical stays available. For details contact the Ranger. Our annual program allows you to stay up to 210 days and leave your rig onsite for the entire year. Hidden Cove annual programs are available for 300 days. Contact the Preserve Office for details. Short-Term Rental - We have four cabins for rent nightly for two weeks at a time, for $80 for members, plus $10 extra for guests, plus tax, per night. We have nine Getaways for our Getaway members. We also have a Hidden Cove rental, which are owned by members and rented by the week or the month. Check with our Preserve Office for details. All rentals are fully furnished. You just need to bring clothes and food! Special Events - SuperHost/pavilion/family center/lake area rental available most weekends for parties and special events. Contact the Ranger Station at the preserve. On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry storage is $35 per month, plus tax. Contact the Ranger Station. We also have short-term storage at $40




per week, plus tax, where you may store your RV and leave electric plugged in while you are out of the preserve. LAKE TAWAKONI | 903-598-2800 Annual/Extended Stay - Standard and Premium sites are available. There are electric charges on both. These sites are for 210 days of usage. Marina and dry storage are available for boats. Short-Term Rental - Two rental cabins available. On-Site/Dry Storage - Monthly Dry Storage cost is $42.70. LAKE TEXOMA 903-523-5835 (Preserve Office) 903-523-4206 (Special Events/Storage) Annual/Extended Stay - Personal Sites available. A year with no time out. *Limited spaces available.* Save on gas, setup, pulling/towing. Please call Nic at the preserve office for information. Don’t delay - sites are rapidly filling up! On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry Storage available for $40 per month. Please call Brynda. LAKE WHITNEY | 254-694-4269 Annual/Extended Stay - Our annual/personal site program allows you to camp up to 210 days a year. There are 4 different price ranges depending on the site type chosen. Call us to find out how to get your personal site at Lake Whitney. On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry storage available for $55 per month or $605, plus tax, for the entire year (if paid in full at start of storage). You receive the 13th month free. Don’t wait - limited space. MEDINA LAKE 830-751-2444 (Preserve Office) 830-751-2406 (Special Events/Storage) Annual/Extended Stay - Annual Site program available. Guarantee your personal site for an entire year with sites starting at $1,733. Call preserve for details. Special Events - Family reunions, company picnics, rallies – we do them all! We have two large outdoor areas available for day use. Campsite and limited cabin rentals are also available. Call Cindy at Special Events. On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry storage $60 per month or $540 per year, plus tax. Call Preserve Office or Storage. VIRGINIA CHESAPEAKE BAY 804-693-6951 (Resort Office) 804-693-9645 (Special Events) Annual/Extended Stay - Chesapeake Bay is the best place to spend weekends and vacation and our annual sites make it so easy to jump in the car and head to the “rivah”! Contact Lisa in the Resort Office if you would like information on how you can lease a site in 2013. Short-Term Rental - We have 20 fully-furnished rental cabins that sleep 4-6. (18 are lakefront locations). Pet units also available. On-Site/Dry Storage - Field storage available year-round. On-site storage available Nov. 15-May 15. Call Resort Office for details. HARBOR VIEW | 804-224-8164 Annual/Extended Stay - Annual Sites $1600, plus electric; monthly $375, plus electric. Continued on page 63




Tech Topics continued from page 9

Here’s a quick piece of cruise control advice: the next time you’re tooling down the highway with your cruise control on and it starts to rain heavily, remember to turn the cruise control OFF. Why? Because if you leave the cruise control on during a heavy rain and your vehicle hydroplanes, the cruise control can actually accelerate drive axles to a higher rate of speed. Then, when your tires again contact the pavement, your vehicle can take off like a shot and even the best drivers can easily lose control. Save the cruise control for drier conditions, because in heavy rain and icy conditions, your best friend can become your worst enemy.

So here’s to an exciting springtime travel season. Keep your filters clean, your cruise control in high gear, and some extra fuel filters in your RV toolbag Blaze a trail! ■ Paul and Kerri Elders are freelance writers; visit their web site at Follow Paul & Kerri on Twitter @ rvlinker.

Terms and Conditions for 2013 Referral Promotion Terms and Conditions: For each Eligible Referral (as defined), you will receive a $25 American Express gift card. In addition, for each Eligible Referral, you will receive one entry in a drawing for the following prizes: (i) Grand Prize is either a trip to Hawaii or a 7 night Caribbean Cruise, valued at $4,000, includes roundtrip coach airfare for two adults from the continental United States to either Hawaii or Florida, and hotel/cruise accommodations for 7 nights; (ii) Second Prize is a trip to either Las Vegas, San Francisco or Orlando, valued at $2,000, that includes roundtrip coach airfare for two adults from the continental United States to either Las Vegas, San Francisco or Orlando and hotel accommodations for 4 nights and (iii) ten (10) Third Prizes waiving payment of the winners’ annual dues for 2014, not to exceed $499 each. The trips do not include taxes, meals, beverages, transfers, gratuities, activities and other personal expenses. The drawing will be held at our corporate offices on January 7, 2014. The winners will be notified by telephone. The odds of winning the drawing depend on the number of entries and are not expected to exceed 1:10,000. For this promotion, an Eligible Referral is a person who (i) purchases a new Zone Park Pass from us between January 1, 2013 and December 14, 2013, and (ii) lists you as the referring member. This offer is only for members in good standing of Thousand Trails and its affiliates. Due to legal restrictions, residents of AZ, FL, NV, NY, PA and TN are not eligible to participate in the drawing and you will not receive an entry in the drawing for purchases made by residents of AZ, NV, PA or TN. We reserve the right to extend, modify, suspend, or terminate this promotion at any time for any reason; however, any rewards earned prior to the suspension or termination of this promotion will be honored. Employees of Equity LifeStyle Properties, Inc. and its affiliates are not eligible to participate in this promotion. All local, state and federal income taxes are the responsibility of the recipient. Accordingly, we recommend that all participants consult a tax advisor about reporting rewards for tax purposes. We will issue the required 1099 to each participant and to the IRS when the total value of awards you are eligible to receive equal or exceed $600.00 for one year. This advertising is being used for the purpose of soliciting sales of resort campground memberships. This document has been filed with the Department of Licensing, State of Washington, as required by Washington law. Value, quality, or conditions stated and performance on promises are the responsibility of the operator, not the Department. This filing does not mean that the Department has approved the merits or qualifications of any registration, advertising, or any gift, prize, or item of value as part of any promotional plan. This promotion is sponsored by MHC Thousand Trails Limited Partnership, Two North Riverside Plaza, Suite 800, Chicago, IL 60606 62


Preserve Services Directory continued from page 60

Short-Term Rental - Book your stay in our Rental Unit; sleeps 6 with a full kitchen and bath. Pets allowed. Call for rates and details. Special Events - Plan your group event at Harbor View. Air-conditioned Recreational Hall and covered Pavilion available for reservation. LYNCHBURG | 434-332-6672 Annual/Extended Stay - Plan to spend the season with us and enjoy all the beauty, festivals and fun that Central Virginia has to offer. Annuals sites are available for $1,200; premium sites are $1,875. Call the preserve for more details. Short-Term Rental - Spend a month or two and enjoy all the wonderful activities and attractions of the area. Our monthly rate is $300, plus electric. Call the preserve for more information and start making your plans today.

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On-Site/Dry Storage - Dry Storage: $40 per month; $200 for six months $200, $400 for the year. WILLIAMSBURG | 757-566-3021 Annual/Extended Stay - Your best year of camping begins at Williamsburg. Annual on-site program at our beautiful tree-sheltered campground: full hook-up, metered sites begin at $1,750. Vacation Cottage Program offers 28 to 38-foot park models, vinyl or log-sided from $1,499 to $4,999, with a 3-year annual on-site lease. Satellite reception sites still available. Call Kristi at the preserve to find out about this month’s TrailBlazer Reader’s Special. Short-Term Rental - Spacious cabins that sleep 6-8 are available starting at $56 for members. Fully furnished except for linens. Call Preserve Office for more information. On-Site/Dry Storage - Secure and easy access storage for $20 per week, $45 per month, or $395 annually, with park membership. Call the preserve for more information.

HEARTLAND LANDMARK 2013 Heartland Landmark Grand Canyon. $68,900 MSRP $99,817. True Four Season (Zero-Rated!), 38’ w/ Triple Slides. 42” LCD TV, Central Vacuum, One Touch Leveling, Frameless Dual Pane Windows. Dual Quiet Whisper AC System (In Stock Units Only) 1-877-960-1777 DRV MOBILE SUITES 2013 DRV Mobile Suites 36RSSB3. $93,013 MSRP $110,668. True Four Season. (Sub-Zero Rated!) 37’ w/ Four Slides. 2 ACs, Frameless Dual Pane Windows, Central Vac, Disc Brakes, Fireplace, 4 Dr. Refrigerator, One Touch Leveling, 43’ Units available. Mention this Ad for 10% Discount off MAP Pricing 1-877-960-1777

To Advertise in Marketplace Or To Place a Classified Ad email Deadline for May 2013 Issue is March 8, 2013 MARCH 2013 | TRAILBLAZER


Find The Evergreen Tree An evergreen tree is hidden somewhere in this issue. Drop us a postcard telling us where you found it, and if your card is drawn you’ll win a $25 American Express Gift Card!

Robert & Doris Hall


from Sun City, CA found the evergreen tree on page 66 of the Nov/Dec issue. Did you find the tree in this issue? Send your entry (postcards only) to TrailBlazer Evergreen Tree, Two North Riverside Plaza, Suite 800, Chicago, IL 60606. Postmark deadline is March 31, and remember — the tree could be a different color and size.



Fast Facts entries will be entered in our Monthly Drawing to

win a $25 American Express Gift Card! This month’s Fast Facts winner is

Earl Sorrells

of Rosamond, CA

Answers - Crossword puzzle can be found on page 50

Answers - Sudoku puzzle can be found on page 50

Stay With Us and Explore the

Rio Grande Valley! There’s plenty to see and do in the Rio Grande Valley and plenty of sunny deals for Thousand Trails members

Fun N Sun

All Texas Encore Resorts

2 New




$119/week $349/month 3 nights for the price of 2 (Through September 2013)

Alamo Palms

Experience the Rio Grande Valley at 10 great resorts at one sunny deal! Alamo Palms

Paradise South

Country Sunshine

Southern Comfort

Fun N Sun

Sunshine RV


Tropic Winds

Paradise Park

Victoria Palms

Victoria Palms

888-808-8925 Promo code TTRGV12 Subject to availability. Reservations required. Rates based on a standard site. Stays of 30 days or less are subject to $3 per day resort fee. Electric not included for stays of 30 days or longer. Rates do not include taxes. Amenities vary by resort. Cannot be combined with any other offers or promotions. Rates exclusively for members of Thousand Trails, NACO, Mid-Atlantic, Leisure Time and Outdoor World. Offer not valid on holidays and special events; certain restrictions may apply. Two week maximum stay per resort at discounted rate. *Offer not valid for Zone Camping Pass holders who have purchased only one zone. MARCH 2013 | TRAILBLAZER 65



he gray whales are on the move, returning from their winter breeding grounds in the lagoons of Baja California and heading to their summer feeding grounds in the North Pacific. There are plenty of opportunities along their route to catch a glimpse of these majestic mammals. Our Pacific coast locations provide the perfect opportunity to stay with us and schedule a tour or two and see if you can spot one of these beauties. Birch Aquarium, near California’s Pio Pico preserve, hosts twice-daily cruises throughout March. For information and reservations call (619) 234-4111. The week of March 23-30 is designated as Whale Watch Week on the Oregon coast and trained volunteers will be present at 24 sites along the coast to show visitors gray whales. Sea Lion Caves, located in Florence, near the South Jetty preserve, and Cape Kiwanda, near our Pacific City preserve, are just a few of the convenient Oregon locations. For details visit








TrailBlazer Magazine - March 2013  

TrailBlazer is the monthly magazine for Thousand Trails campgrounds