An RV park near St. Cloud in central Minnesota looks like most other campgrounds.
There’s a club house, heated swimming pool, a tennis court, golf course, sauna, horseshoes, tennis and bocce ball courts, shuffleboard, and fully serviced RV sites with all the usual amenities including free Wi-Fi access.
But this campground 53 miles northwest of the Minneapolis is different.
A slice of retro heaven, the Minnesota Airstream Park is a reflective sea of silver bullet trailers. Freshly polished aluminum skins shines like a mirror on wheels. This is an Airstream-only RV park—one of 11 in the U.S.
For decades, Airstream owners have been seduced by the sleek, aerodynamic, aluminum-skinned travel trailer created by Wally Byam in 1936. He named it the Clipper and the brand, Airstream, was placed onto the map.
The Clipper was of similar design to the Road Chief, a trailer previously designed by former aircraft designer chief builder of The Spirit of St. Louis, Hawley Bowlus. However, the Clipper had one distinct difference—the door was positioned on the side.
When Airstream began, there were less than 48 trailer manufacturers that were registered for business. Five years later, nearly 400 companies squared off against each other. Today of those 400 companies, only Airstream remains.
Back in 1970, a group of Airstream enthusiasts who lived in Minnesota wanted a place to call their own near the Twin Cities, founded the 80-acre park in Clear Lake.
The resort was organized as a cooperative by several families, all of whom were Airstream trailer owners and members of the Minnesota unit WBCCI (Wally Byam Caravan Club International) seeking a good place for rallies. With pooled funds, they purchased the land and did much of the work of building the Airstream Park themselves.
Today there are 125 sites, with lots priced from $4,000 to $22,000, depending on the location, landscaping, and amenities, such as screened gazebos.
Now, people come from all across the country—even across the pond—to enjoy the Land of 10,000 lakes.
The Minnesota Airstream Park has lots available for both short-term and seasonal guests.
Airstream club members also can rent a camping site for the daily rate of $27 or a three-night weekend for $54; weekly and monthly rates are $162 and $600 respectively.
Rates include a lot with a gazebo or screen room, full water, sewer, and electrical hook-ups and free access to all resort amenities, including the golf course (no greens fee), tennis court, swimming pool (and pool house with a sauna and soft-water showers), laundry room, picnic areas, fire pits, bocce ball court, shuffleboard court, and park-wide wi-fi access.
This is a co-op campground, so you have to buy a share in order to get a lot. Shares run anywhere from $5,000 to $15,000.
But Airstream Park culture isn’t just about the “silver bullet” trailers and memories of family vacations. Airstreamers also form friendships at social activities such as potlucks, bingo, campfires, and karaoke.
Minnesota Airstream Park
Minnesota Airstream Park is an Airstream-only RV resort situated on 80 beautiful acres in central Minnesota. There are 125 member-owned lots, and all members of the resort are shareholders of Land Yacht Caravaners Club, Inc., a non-profit corporation.
Each owner’s share entitles them to the exclusive use of a specific site in the resort, along with the unlimited use of all shared resort amenities, including a 9 hole, par 28 golf course with no greens fees. If you have an Airstream-manufactured RV, you are eligible for the truly unique opportunity of owning a slice of the Airstream-only RV resort.
Address: 8795 82nd Street, Clear Lake, MN 55319
Phone: (320) 743-2771
I saw a peanut stand, heard a rubber band,
I saw a needle that winked its eye.
But I think I will have seen everything
When I see an Airstream fly.
—music and lyrics by Oliver Wallace and Ned Washington, in Dumbo