2015 RV Rallies

RVing can be even more memorable when it’s shared with other RVers at a rally.

Freightliner Club Rally
Freightliner Club Rally held at Lazy Days in Tucson, Arizona © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved.

There are several different types of RV rallies including Good Sam Club National and Chapter rallies, manufacturer club rallies, and club rallies for RVers of similar interests.

Good Sam Club Chapters embrace RV fellowship and make lasting friendships through a shared sense of community and a love for RVing. Chapters hold campouts, plan social events, and organize community volunteer opportunities. There are nearly 1,500 Good Sam Chapters across North America.

Manufacturer clubs enhance the enjoyment of ownership by providing connections with others of similar interests. In addition to a national RV rally, most of these RV clubs and manufacturers host regional and local chapter rallies. The brand club rallies for owners of a specific brand of RV typically offer technical and lifestyle seminars, crafts, new RV displays, and opportunities to socialize.

Many RVers enjoy gathering with friends who have special interests or common goals. Similar interest clubs include Escapees RV Club for full-timers and Family Motor Coach Association (FMCA) for motorhome enthusiasts. From singles clubs to an organization of military personnel, chances are good that you can find a club that’s just right.

FMCA Western Area Rally, Riverside County Fair & National Date Festival, Indio, California
FMCA Western Area Rally, Riverside County Fair & National Date Festival, Indio, California © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved.

With the numerous RV Shows and club rallies scheduled in Sunbelt regions you’re bound to find one that enhances your RV lifestyle.

FMCA Western Area Rally, Riverside County Fair & National Date Festival, Indio, California, January 7-11

Winnebago 2015 Preview Rally, Lazydays RV Campground, Seffner, Florida, January 9-11

Newmar Kountry Klub Florida RV Show Rally, Florida State Fairgrounds, Tampa, Florida, January 13-18

Newmar Kountry Klub Gathering in the Desert, Quartzsite, Arizona, January 14-20

American Coach Eastern Regional Rally, Lazydays RV Campground, Seffner, Florida, January 14-18

Havasu Balloon Festival & Fair, January 16-18, The Island Golf Club at the Nautical Beachfront Resort, Lake Havasu City, Arizona, January 16-18

FROG (Forest River Owners’ Group) Rally, Sherwood Forest RV Resort, Kissimmee, Florida, January 19-25

American Coach Western Regional Rally, Las Vegas Motorhome Resort, Las Vegas, Nevada, January 29-February 2

FMCA Rally at Perry, Georgia
FMCA Rally at Perry, Georgia © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved.

RV-Dreams Boondocking Rally, Turner Agri Civic Center, Arcadia, Florida, February 8-15

Born Free Rally, Lazydays RV Campground, Seffner, Florida, February 9-11

FMCA Southeast Area Rally, Sarasota County Fairgrounds, Sarasota, Florida, February 11-14

Passport America Fun Rally, Sarasota County Fairgrounds, Sarasota, Florida, February 17-20

Entegra Coach Rally, Lazydays RV Campground, Seffner, Florida, February 20-22

The Rally/Good Sam Phoenix Rally, Phoenix International Raceway, Phoenix, Arizona, February 26-March 1

Escapees RV Club Escapade, Pima County Fairgrounds, Tucson, Arizona, March 8–13

Nevada Good Sam Samboree, Nevada Treasure RV Resort, Pahrump, Nevada, March 11-14

Monaco International RV Club Rally, Pahrump, Nevada, March 17-21

WIT (Winnebago Itasca International) Club Florida State Rally, Central Florida Fairgrounds, Orlando, Florida, March 19-22

Passport America Fun Rally, Escambia County Equestrian Center, Pensacola, Florida, March 23-26

Commercial displays and sales are part of most RV rallies. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved.
Commercial displays and sales are part of most RV rallies. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved.

Tiffin Allegro Club Rally, Central Florida Fairgrounds, Orlando, Florida, March 23-27

FMCA Family Reunion & Motorhome Showcase, Fairplex, Pomona, California, March 26-29

Worth Pondering…

I would like to share this one for today with you…

Live one day at a time–

While you can plan for tomorrow, you can’t live it until it arrives. Most people spend so much time regretting the past and worrying about the future, they leave no time to enjoy today!

John Lennon once wrote, “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” Decide to make the most of each moment.

Read More

Top 7 Christmas Gifts For the RVer in Your Life

It’s the time of year when Christmas carols fill the air, the smell of fir trees (or cactus or palm trees, depending on your location) waft through the RV, jolly thoughts of eggnog and food—and gifts are exchanged.

Following are 5 gift ideas on what to give the RVer in your life or even add them to your own Christmas wish list.

  1. Good Sam Club

Camping World Good Sam1.5 million RV owners are members of the Good Sam Club.

Membership benefits include 10 percent discount on the regular night camping rate at 2,100+ Good Sam RV parks and campgrounds, up to 30 percent discount at Camping World; discount on fuel purchases at Pilot Flying J Travel Centers, and four free issues of MotorHome or Trailer Life magazine. Also, you may join a local chapter, attend Samborees, and enjoy RV caravan tours to a variety of destinations such as the Rose Bowl Parade and Alaska.

A Good Sam Club membership is $25.00 per year. Two and three years memberships are also available for $45.00 and $60.00 respectively.

  1. Passport America

passport-703775Passport America, a family-run business, is the “original” 50% Discount Camping Club. They invented the concept in 1992 and have continued to improve upon it. 1852 participating campgrounds across the Canada, United States, and Mexico currently participate in the Passport America Program.

If you are currently a Passport America member you can purchase a gift membership for the regular rate ($44.00) minus your $10.00 referral commission. You will receive three extra months ($11 .00 value) free to your current membership with a new ID card.

  1. Big Rigs Best Bets Campground Directory

Big-Rigs-2013-Cover_x-200x300Big Rigs Best Bets Campground Directory includes a blend of 1150 upscale resorts, overnight stays along the interstate, destination parks, and suitable public parks. Serving the RV community since 2001 with a user friendly spiral bound guide—506 pages, lays flat, quality paper, and large print. All parks personally visited by the authors.

The user friendly guide includes forty-nine states, eight Canadian provinces, a separate Alaska Highway section, selected diesel fuel stops, and notable restaurant tips. The Directory is also available in an online version—detailed park listings with GPS physical addresses, color maps, fuel stops, restaurant tips, and more.

The 15th edition of the spiral bound book is available for $24.95 + shipping/handling; on-line version is available for $24.95 with a $15.00 annual renewal option with updates thereafter; spiral bound book and online version with a $15.00 renewable option with updates thereafter is available for $40.00

  1. Emergency Kit
A first aid kit readily available in an emergency isn’t just a good idea—it’s a necessity for every RV adventure.
A first aid kit readily available in an emergency isn’t just a good idea—it’s a necessity for every RV adventure.

Buy a pre-assembled emergency kit or assemble one yourself. Be sure to include an American Red Cross First Aid Guide, a variety of adhesive and non-adhesive bandages, butterfly wound closure, gauze dressing pads, gauze roll, triangular sling, antiseptic towelettes, alcohol cleansing pad, antibiotic ointment packs, flashlights with spare batteries, light stick, candles, matches, flares, emergency blanket, a small pillow, scissors, tweezers, gloves, rope, and duct tape, whistle with neck cord, emergency poncho, and hand warmers.

A variety of first aid kits are available from the American Red Cross

  1. Gift Cards and Gift Certificates

Gift cards and gift certificates make great gifts for RVers. They don’t take up any storage space (always at a premium) and can be redeemed for all kinds of handy things.

RV favorites include Amazon.com, Walmart, Costco, Best Buy, Home Depot, Lowe’s, LL Bean, Bass Pro Shops, and Camping World; and gift cards from a chain restaurant including Cracker Barrel, Olive Garden, Texas Roadhouse, Applebees, IHOP, Ruby Tuesday, Subway, and TGI Fridays.

  1. LED Flashlights

RVers often need a flashlight—and many times the batteries are nearly dead. A LED flashlight, due to its low power draw, is the answer. These little powerhouses are small and incredibly bright, and you can never have too many of them. Keep one in the dash, another on the nightstand, one in the toad, and a couple in various bays of your RV. And they are available in a variety of sizes and at all price levels.

  1. A Hug

christmas-bird1A hug is a great gift—one size fits all!!!

Worth Pondering…

I have a list of folks I know, all entered in my computer,

And once a year about this time, I go and take a look.

And that is when I realize that these names are a part

Not of the computer they’re entered in, but of my very heart.

For every name stands for someone who has crossed my path sometime

And in that meeting they’re become the rhythm of the rhyme.

And while it sounds fantastic for me to make this claim,

I really feel I am composed of each remembered name.

Read More

Snowbird Basics

Winter is a time for boots, snow shovels, and icy roads… unless you’re a snowbird who RVs to the Sun Belt.

On the Colorado River in the southwest corner of Arizona, Yuma’s been at the crossroads for centuries. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
On the Colorado River in the southwest corner of Arizona, Yuma’s been at the crossroads for centuries. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

As Neil Young once sang, “the summer ends and the winter winds begin to holler all around the bend…”

The cooler temperatures have us thinking about the coming winter: snow, ice, and bone-chilling cold. You’re familiar with the drill: dig out the snow shovel, take the snow blower on a test run, and pull out the warm winter sweaters, parkas, mitts, and snow boots. Such are the joys of a northern winter!

The entire history of the human race is largely a search for comfort. Warm southern winters certainly rate high on my comfort scale.

How about snowbirding?

Snowbirds are typically retired seniors who have the desire and financial ability to be away from home for extended periods of time.

The snowbird lifestyle is to our liking since we can take our home with us when the cold weather arrives and snow begins to falls. For us the snowbird lifestyle is the best of both worlds.

Planning

Rockport is known as “The Charm of the Texas Coast” and for good reasons too. It’s a quiet, little town on the coast of Texas just 30 minutes north of Corpus Christi. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Rockport is known as “The Charm of the Texas Coast” and for good reasons too. It’s a quiet, little town on the coast of Texas just 30 minutes north of Corpus Christi. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Preparing your home for an extended absence requires thorough thought and planning.

Before heading south, snowbirds need to take steps to secure and winterize their homes.

Creating a customized checklists is one way to keep track of your seasonal preparations.

Consider the following tips as a starting point when creating your winter-ready checklist.

Check expiry dates for travel documents, insurance, and credit cards.

Check with your insurance to determine how extended absences may affect coverage.

You are escaping the snow, but your home is not. Arrange with a neighbor, relative, friend, or snow removal service to keep sidewalks clear and your home secure.

Ask a friend, trustworthy neighbor, or relative to be the contact person for your home. It’s important to have someone check your home on a regular basis, remove sales flyers, and be available in emergency situations. Your home should look like someone is living there.

Provide the contact person and other neighbors, relatives, and friends with pertinent information including smart phone and email address, vehicle and home insurance, security system, furnace repair, description of RV and toad or tow truck and trailer with plate numbers.

The long-legged, S-necked Great white egret feeds in wetlands, streams, ponds, and tidal flats.
The long-legged, S-necked Great white egret feeds in wetlands, streams, ponds, and tidal flats. Photo above at Corkscrew Sanctuary near Naples, Florida. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Place a temporary hold on your newspaper delivery.

Receiving your mail in a timely manner can be a major concern for Snowbirds, full-timers, and other RVers who plan to be on the road for an extended period of time. Arrange with your local postal service to have your mail forwarded to a mail forwarding address. Trusted and reliable mail forwarding services include Good SamEscapees, and Dakota Post.

Unplug all electronics and electrical appliances—microwave, washer and dryer, stove, refrigerator, coffee pot, toaster oven, TVs, audio equipment, radios, and lamps.

Reduce costs and save energy consumption by turning the thermostat down to 45-50 degrees F (7-10 C).

Empty the refrigerator and turn it off. Unplug all electronics and electrical appliances.

Check to ensure that all smoke alarms are in working order and have fresh batteries.

Adjust the water heater thermostat to “pilot” or turn it off. Turn off the water supply at the main valve.

do your dream
Do Your Dream © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

This list is a good place to start, but you may take additional steps to secure your home.

Be careful what you post on social media. Burglars have started crawling social media websites to find times when a house will be empty.

Worth Pondering…

It started out a dream

A simple someday soon

But we worked hard

and made it real

This snowbird life

behind the wheel.

Read More

Date Changes for The Rally (2015)

In an earlier story on Vogel Talks RVing, I reported that The Rally would return for 2015.

2015-Rally-web-banner_AZ-5.7.14Good Sam has recently announced a date change for the upcoming Good Sam Phoenix Rally, which was originally scheduled for March 19 to 22 at the Phoenix International Raceway. The date change comes on the heels of the release of NASCAR’s upcoming 2015 Sprint Cup Series race schedule.

The race schedule, which was released August 26, 2014, outlined that the Phoenix International Raceway requested the race be held at the track on March 15 instead of the original date of March 1. This new date of the Phoenix race affects the scheduled Good Sam Phoenix Rally, and the event has now been advanced to February 26 to March 1, with early bird arrival dates of February 24 and 25.

“With the new date of the NASCAR Phoenix race, we are left with no choice but to advance our event in order to ensure a successful event while considering the planning and logistics of this rally,” said Marcus Lemonis, chairman and CEO of Good Sam.

“We are extremely disappointed with this change and the fact that we were not informed until late August, after we had already published our rally dates in May. We had begun discussions with the track personnel in April and locked in the original dates at that time, while it was not mentioned to our organization that the Phoenix International Raceway was in discussions with NASCAR to change their original scheduled race date.”

The RallyThe Good Sam Club boasts a combined 14 years of experience hosting rally events. Ten days before the attendees arrive, staff are on-site setting up tents, building stages, and laying out the parking site grids, including full electrical hook-ups, for an anticipated 3,000 attendees. For the convenience, safety and security of all those attending, the planning committee expressed concerns that scheduling the event within 3 days of the race would not be sufficient, he explained.

“We are committed to providing our rally-goers the best experience possible with the latest in RV models and outdoor products, new and improved RV and camping seminars and activities, and world-class entertainment,” said Lemonis.

“We want our rally goers to know that if this could have been avoided we would have made other arrangements to alleviate any confusion and inconvenience to our attending members and guests. We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused our guests.”

Details

The Rally

Visit The Rally website to register online and to stay up to date on entertainment and daily activities as plans fall into place over the next several months.

Phone: (800) 701-1399 (toll free)

Website: www.therally.com

Camping World & Good Sam

Camping World Good SamBoth founded in 1966, Camping World is America’s number one source for RVs, camping accessories, RV maintenance and repair and Good Sam is the world’s largest RV owners organization offering helpful technical tips, vacation planning, extended warranty, magazine subscriptions, roadside assistance, and more to serve the outdoor enthusiast.

Partnered together, Camping World and Good Sam offer more to those who love the RV lifestyle by offering one-stop shopping and resources for everything RV and outdoors.

Camping World features over 10,000 quality products located at over100 Super Centers nationwide, easy online and catalog shopping as well as stocking a wide selection of new and used trailers and motorhomes from top RV manufacturers. Good Sam members receive cost-saving benefits and services, plus loads of valuable RV information and travel tips to get you ready for your next adventure.

Additionally, Good Sam represents more than 1,500 local RV chapters designed to bring RVers together from similar geographic regions for group camping excursions.

Camping World is the title sponsor of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series in addition to the Official RV and Outdoor Retailer of NASCAR.

Websites: www.CampingWorld.com and www.GoodSam.com

Worth Pondering…

Happy is the man who can enjoy scenery when he has to take a detour.

Read More

Camping World Updates 2015 Growth Strategy

In previous articles on Vogel Talks RVing, I’ve reported on markets selected by Camping World Inc. and Good Sam Enterprises LLC for expansion and development of RV SuperCenters. I later reported that Camping World Inc. and Good Sam Enterprises LLC had updated their expansion plans to include three additional locations.

Camping World, Ashville, North Carolina
Camping World, Ashville, North Carolina

Camping World Inc. and Good Sam Enterprises LLC announced additional markets for their 2015 supercenter expansion and future development to meet customer needs for products and services across the United States.

The newest developments raise the total number of Camping World SuperCenters to just shy of 120 nationwide, according to a company news release. Additionally, the company is under contract with land owners and existing dealerships actively pursuing new markets and acquisitions that will be announced over the next six months.

Plans are underway to expand the company footprint with additional locations in high traffic, outdoor-centric areas within the following markets:

First quarter 2015

  • Jackson, Mississippi

Second quarter 2015

  • Idaho Falls, Idaho
  • Greensboro, North Carolina (relocation from Colfax, North Carolina)
  • Wentzville, Missouri (St. Louis area)
  • Lexington, Kentucky
  • Charlotte, North Carolina
  • Texas City, Texas
  • Savannah, Georgia (relocation from Pooler, Georgia)

Third quarter 2015

  • Newnan, Georgia (South Atlanta area)
  • Conroe, Texas
  • Erie, Pennsylvania
  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Camping World near Yuba City, California
Camping World near Yuba City, California

“Camping World and Good Sam are committed to offering quality outdoor products and services to the customers and travelers of these markets,” said Marcus Lemonis, CEO and Chairman of Camping World and Good Sam and star of CNBC’s The Profit.

“As part of our growth strategy, the brand is making major investments in the quality of its dealer network. From facility upgrades to new store openings, the company’s network will continue to expand and evolve while serving as our customers’ one-stop location for everything outdoor and RV.”

The aforementioned markets are in addition to highly visible locations that opened in 2014, which include:

January 2014: Lake Park, Georgia

February 2014: Coburg, Oregon and Fresno, California

April 2014: Saukville ,Wisconsin

July 2014: Olive Branch, Mississippi and Rossford, Ohio

“This is an exciting announcement not only for those of us who love the outdoors, but also for the community members of these great cities. These recent acquisitions not only increase our presence in existing markets and new territories but are also in alignment with the strategic growth plans we have for the company,” said Lemonis.

“We are constantly reviewing our footprint and evaluating where we can strengthen our position within each of our markets.”

Details

Camping World & Good Sam

Camping World Good SamBoth founded in 1966, Camping World is America’s #1 source for RVs, camping accessories, RV maintenance, and repair; and Good Sam is the world’s largest RV owners organization offering helpful technical tips, vacation planning, extended warranty, magazine subscriptions, roadside assistance, and more to serve the outdoor enthusiast.

Partnered together, Camping World and Good Sam offer more to those who love the RV lifestyle by offering one-stop shopping and resources for everything RV and outdoors.

Camping World features over 10,000 quality products located at just under 100 SuperCenters nationwide, easy online and catalog shopping as well as stocking a wide selection of new and used trailers and motorhomes from top RV manufacturers.

Good Sam members receive cost-saving benefits and services, plus loads of valuable RV information and travel tips to get you ready for your next adventure.

Additionally, Good Sam represents more than 1,500 local RV chapters designed to bring RVers together from similar geographic regions for group camping excursions.

Camping World is the title sponsor of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series™ in addition to the Official RV and Outdoor Retailer of NASCAR®.

Websites: campingworld.com and goodsam.com

Worth Pondering…

Arguably the best slogan ever written to describe the RV lifestyle comes to mind: Wherever you go, you’re always at home. We have much to be thankful for, including our great RV lifestyle…

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Good Sam Announces Top RV Parks for Golfers for 2014

The Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory announced its list of Top Parks for Golfers for 2014.

Good Sam 2014-Top Golfing-ShieldGood Sam editors and consultants chose the list of Parks for Golfers from the annual publication’s database of 8,000 private parks.

These RV parks provide challenging, fun-filled golf courses for RVers who seek out great links on their travels.

Some of the RV parks on this list feature golf courses and driving ranges on their property; others are located in regions with several nearby golf courses. In all cases, these parks are up to par when it comes to attracting folks who are always ready to tee off.

Highlights of this list include:

  • Some RV parks attract golfers in part because of their proximity to world-renowned courses. Eagle View RV Resort at Fort McDowell is located just two minutes from the We-Ko-Pa Golf Club, ranked by Sports Illustrated as one of the Top 10 New Public Golf Courses in the World.
  • Parks that offer links within the resort include Pueblo El Mirage Golf and RV Resort, which boasts a 72-par course designed by golfing champion Fuzzy Zoeller.
  • RV/Golf travel packages help some of these RV parks attract golfing customers. Mallard Creek Golf Course & RV Resort, for instance, offers packages for stays as long as a month that include unlimited golf on the resort’s course.

Facts about Golfing RV Travelers

By 1900, The Jekyll Island Club (Georgia) membership included the Rockefellers, Morgans, Cranes and Goulds and represented over one-sixth of the world’s wealth.  © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
By 1900, The Jekyll Island Club (Georgia) membership included the Rockefellers, Morgans, Cranes and Goulds and represented over one-sixth of the world’s wealth. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Since 1980, the number of golfers in the United States has grown by 50 percent, with more than 30 million enthusiasts hitting the links.

There are approximately 15,500 golf facilities in the U.S., many of which are in or near or within RV parks.

In 2012, golfers played 490 million rounds on U.S. courses, up 5.7 percent from 2011

Top RV Parks for Golfers

Arizona
Eagle View RV Resort at Fort McDowell, Fort Mcdowell
Pueblo El Mirage Golf & RV Resort, El Mirage

California
Emerald Desert RV Resort – Sunland, Palm Desert
Pomo RV Park & Campground, Fort Bragg

Florida
Grand Lake RV & Golf Resort, Citra
The Glades RV Resort, La Belle

Michigan
Signature Motorcoach Resort at Bay Harbor, Bay Harbor

Missouri
Mark Twain Landing, Monroe City

Montana
Fairmont RV Park & Campground, Anaconda

Oregon
Mallard Creek Golf & RV Resort, Lebanon

Texas
Parkview Riverside RV Park, Concan

Winter weather is close to perfect in Palm Springs and the other desert resort cities in the Coachella Valley. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Winter weather is close to perfect in Palm Springs and the other desert resort cities in the Coachella Valley. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Washington
Lake Pleasant RV Park, Bothell

Good Sam RV Travel Guide

A different category of Top Parks will be featured each month in articles released by the Good Sam RV Travel Guide.

In addition to comprehensive listings of RV parks and campgrounds across North America, the 2014 Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory features travel itineraries, helpful maps, and informative tips that RVers need for a journey anywhere in North America.

Additional camping and RV Travel information is available on the Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory Camping Blog.

Worth Pondering…

Golf is the closest game to the game we call life. You get bad breaks from good shots; you get good breaks from bad shots—but you have to play the ball where it lies.

—Bobby Jones

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Good Sam Announces Top Scenic RV Parks for 2014

The Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory announced its list of Top scenic Parks for 2014.

Good Sam 2014-Top-Scenic-ShieldGood Sam editors and consultants chose the list of Scenic Parks from the annual publication’s database of 8,000 private parks.

These special parks are situated in some of the most attractive destinations in North America.

While putting together the list, the Good Sam RV Travel Guide’s editors and consultants included parks whose landscaping in many cases rivals the stellar landscapes of the surrounding areas.

The highlights of this list include:

  • For some parks, wildlife viewing is a key part of the guest experience. At Eagle’s Rest Campground in Valdez, Alaska, guests are frequently treated to glimpses of eagles gliding over the campground, with spectacular mountains, waterfalls, and views of Prince William Sound serving as the backdrop.
  • Some RV Parks strive to make their landscaping design as beautiful as the surrounding area. For example, Indian Waters RV Resort in Indio, California, boasts sprawling grass and desert vistas along with ponds and towering eucalyptus trees that harmonize with its surrounding desert landscape.
  • Many RV parks serve as jumping off points to scenic excursion. At Lake Mead Village on the shores of sprawling Lake Mead in southern Nevada, guests can go on sightseeing tours or hike nearby trails to take in some of the spectacular surrounding scenery.

Facts About Scenic RV Travel

Sculpted, chiseled, and twisted red rock formations more dramatic than most others we have seen dominate the Valley of Fire State Park's 42,000 acres. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Sculpted, chiseled, and twisted red rock formations more dramatic than most others we have seen dominate the Valley of Fire State Park’s 42,000 acres. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

According to USA Today, the most scenic place in the United States is Sedona Arizona, followed by the view of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, from Mount Washington and the Upper Mississippi River.

DigitalCameraWorld.com advises photographers to take the time to get the right shot of scenery. Travelers should get out of the RV, find the optimal position and, if possible, use a tripod.

When planning a vacation based on scenery, travelers are advised to factor in the season. For example, trips to New England during the fall season are dramatically different than summer trips to that region.

Top Scenic RV Parks

Alaska
Eagle’s Rest RV Park & Cabins, Valdez

California
Indian Waters RV Resort & Cottages, Indio
Santa Nella RV Park, Santa Nella

Kansas
Deer Creek Valley RV Park Llc, Topeka

Nevada
Lake Mead RV Village, Boulder City

New Mexico
USA RV Park, Gallup

North Carolina
Fort Tatham RV Park, Sylva

Good Sam RV Travel Guide

The RV/MH Hall of Fame showcases the growth, history, and accomplishments of the recreational vehicle and manufactured housing industries, with displays and restored units dating back to 1913. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
The RV/MH Hall of Fame showcases the growth, history, and accomplishments of the recreational vehicle and manufactured housing industries, with displays and restored units dating back to 1913. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

A different category of Top Parks will be featured each month in articles released by the Good Sam RV Travel Guide.

In addition to comprehensive listings of RV parks and campgrounds across North America, the 2014 Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory features travel itineraries, helpful maps, and informative tips that RVers need for a journey anywhere in North America.

Additional camping and RV Travel information is available on the Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory Camping Blog.

Worth Pondering…

A lake is the landscape’s most beautiful and expressive feature.

It is earth’s eye, looking into which, the beholder measures the depth of his own nature.

—Henry David Thoreau

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Good Sam Announces Top RV Parks for Food Lovers for 2014

The Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory announced its list of Top RV Parks for Food Lovers for 2014.

Good Sam 2014-Top Food-Lovers-ParksGood Sam editors and consultants chose the list of RV Parks for Food Lovers from the annual publication’s database of 8,000 private parks.

The RV parks on this list are located in regions known for distinctive local cuisine or in areas that host popular food festivals.

From RV parks in fertile farming regions to campgrounds in sophisticated cities, the list of Top RV Parks for Food Lovers is a virtual smorgasbord of culinary styles and tastes.

Highlights of this list include:

  • For some RV parks, providing excellent culinary service is part of the customer experience. At Michigan’s Thunder Bay Resort, guests can partake in Elk Viewing Dinner Ride Package, in which gourmet dinner is cooked on two antique wood cook stoves and served in an rustic setting.
  • Some resorts cultivate their own food. Nevada’s Wine Ridge RV Resort for example, serves vintages produced from the vineyard and winery located on the property. In addition, the resort’s Symphony Restaurant has earned five-star ratings in a number of food guides.
  • Other parks offer the full resort experience. At Pechanga RV Resort in Temecula, California, RVers can play a round of golf on the Journey golf course and stop by the award winning Journey’s End restaurant for a delicious meal while enjoying scenic views of the course

Facts about food-loving RV travelers

Weikel's Bakery, La Grande, Texas © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Weikel’s Bakery, La Grande, Texas © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

A survey by RVAdvice.com revealed that 86 percent of RVers try the regional dishes when they travel.

Fifty-six percent of those sampled say they’re willing to travel up to 25 miles for a good meal, while 32 percent said they’d trek up to 50 miles to satisfy their taste buds

Food festivals such as the Gilroy Garlic Festival in California and Maine Lobster Festival attract many RVers eager to try new flavors.

Top RV Parks for Food Lovers

British Columbia
Hazelmere RV Park & Campground, Surrey

California
Pechanga RV Resort, Temecula

Connecticut
Seaport RV Resort & Campground, Mystic

A perennial favorite of barbecue lovers is Smitty's Market in Lockhart, Texas. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
A perennial favorite of barbecue lovers is Smitty’s Market in Lockhart, Texas. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Michigan
Thunder Bay Resort, Hillman

Nevada
Wine Ridge RV Resort & Cottages, Pahrump

North Carolina
Asheville Bear Creek RV Park, Asheville

Texas
Austin Lone Star Carefree RV Resort, Austin

Utah
Salt Lake City KOA, Salt Lake City

Wisconsin
Hidden Valley RV Resort & Campground, Milton

Good Sam RV Travel Guide

Café Des Amis in historic downtown Breaux Bridge hosts a world famous Zydeco Breakfast every Saturday morning and a spectacular Sunday brunch served all day. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Café Des Amis in historic downtown Breaux Bridge hosts a world famous Zydeco Breakfast every Saturday morning and a spectacular Sunday brunch served all day. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

A different category of Top Parks will be featured each month in articles released by the Good Sam RV Travel Guide.

In addition to comprehensive listings of RV parks and campgrounds across North America, the 2014 Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory features travel itineraries, helpful maps, and informative tips that RVers need for a journey anywhere in North America.

Additional camping and RV Travel information is available on the Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory Camping Blog.

Worth Pondering…

I am not a glutton—I am an explorer of food.

—Erma Bombeck

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Good Sam/Camping World Launch Rewards Program

Good Sam Enterprises LLC and Camping World Inc. signed a long-term agreement with Alliance Data to provide co-brand credit card services including the launch of a rewards program.

Camping World of Asheville, located at 2918 North Rugby Road in Hendersonville, NC offers convenient access for travelers at exit 44 on Highway 26 and will encompass both a Camping World retail store and Camping World RV Sales dealership. (Source: goodsamclub.com)
Camping World of Asheville, located at 2918 North Rugby Road in Hendersonville, NC offers convenient access for travelers at exit 44 on Highway 26 and will encompass both a Camping World retail store and Camping World RV Sales dealership. (Source: goodsamclub.com)

The announcement was made by Alliance Data Systems Corporation, a leading global provider of data-driven marketing and loyalty solutions which manages more than 130 private label and co-brand credit programs.

“Good Sam is the only company that is integrated into all elements of the RV lifestyle, and we’re pleased to find a dedicated marketing partner for our card program. Alliance Data shares in the excitement of our loyal customer base as they seek more benefits to help them enjoy spending time on the open road,” said Marcus Lemonis, chief executive officer of Good Sam Enterprises.

“With Alliance Data’s ability to leverage the retail point-of-sale channel and creatively market to our dedicated group of enthusiasts, we’re confident we can offer a best-in-class value proposition that will increase loyalty and sales.”

Alliance Data Retail Services will deliver a marketing-driven co-brand credit program designed to enrich Good Sam’s relationship with its cardmembers, offering more incentives to shop through its retail stores, websites, or call centers and stay at private campgrounds across the U.S. and Canada.

Cardmembers will earn Rec Rewards for every dollar spent with the card, including accelerated Rec Rewards for purchases of Good Sam and Camping World products and stays at private campgrounds.

The program will leverage Alliance Data’s real-time capabilities and on-site technologies to welcome Good Sam members and Camping World customers to the program. Good Sam will have access to Alliance Data’s advanced suite of digital and mobile solutions, designed for cardmembers living an “on the go” lifestyle.

Camping World near Yuba City, California
Camping World near Yuba City, California

“With Good Sam’s position as a category leader, substantial membership base and brand recognition—along with the fact that roughly 30 million Americans participate in the RV lifestyle—we’re enthusiastic about the opportunities that lie ahead for this partnership,” said Melisa Miller, president of Alliance Data Retail Services.

“As we deepen our experience in the affinity space, we look forward to working with Good Sam to employ a results-driven approach that will achieve higher levels of loyalty by expanding their marketing across new channels.”

Additionally, Alliance Data will purchase Good Sam’s existing file of co-brand credit card accounts, acquiring a portfolio with a size approximately double the average portfolio range of Alliance Data’s existing client base.

Details

Camping World & Good Sam

Camping World Good SamBoth founded in 1966, Camping World is America’s #1 source for RVs, camping accessories, RV maintenance, and repair; and Good Sam is the world’s largest RV owners organization offering helpful technical tips, vacation planning, extended warranty, magazine subscriptions, roadside assistance, and more to serve the outdoor enthusiast.

Partnered together, Camping World and Good Sam offer more to those who love the RV lifestyle by offering one-stop shopping and resources for everything RV and outdoors.

Camping World features over 10,000 quality products located at just under 100 SuperCenters nationwide, easy online and catalog shopping as well as stocking a wide selection of new and used trailers and motorhomes from top RV manufacturers.

Good Sam members receive cost-saving benefits and services, plus loads of valuable RV information and travel tips to get you ready for your next adventure.

Additionally, Good Sam represents more than 1,500 local RV chapters designed to bring RVers together from similar geographic regions for group camping excursions.

Camping World is the title sponsor of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series™ in addition to the Official RV and Outdoor Retailer of NASCAR®.

Websites: www.campingworld.com and www.goodsamclub.com

Alliance Data

ALLIANCE DATA LOGOAlliance Data and its combined businesses is a leading global provider of data-driven marketing and loyalty solutions serving large, consumer-based industries.

The Company creates and deploys customized solutions, enhancing the critical customer marketing experience; the result is measurably changing consumer behavior while driving business growth and profitability for some of today’s most recognizable brands. Alliance Data helps its clients create and increase customer loyalty through solutions that engage millions of customers each day across multiple touch points using traditional, digital, mobile and emerging technologies.

An S&P 500 company headquartered in Dallas, Alliance Data and its three businesses employ approximately 12,000 associates at more than 80 locations worldwide.

Website: www.alliancedataretail.com

Worth Pondering…

Arguably the best slogan ever written to describe the RV lifestyle comes to mind: Wherever you go, you’re always at home. We have much to be thankful for, including our great RV lifestyle…

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Good Sam Announces Top Waterfront RV Parks for 2014

The Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory announced its list of Top Waterfront RV Parks for 2014.

Good Sam 2014-Top WaterfrontShieldGood Sam editors and consultants chose the list of Waterfront Parks from the annual publication’s database of 8,000 private parks.

These RV parks are located on or near the banks of some of North America’s most popular lakes, rivers and ocean shores.

For water loving RVers, these parks provide easy access to fabulous recreation. In many parks, the shore is just a few paces from guests’ front doors. Whether RVers seek to catch a wave or drift in a lazy current, these parks inspire travelers to pull off the open road and hit the shore.

Highlights of this list include:

  • Several parks on the list cater to RVers who love boating and waterskiing. Located on the Colorado River in Nevada, Willow Beach Marina and Campground, for example, rents boats and kayaks to visitors eager to explore the area’s sheer cliffs and sandy beaches.
  • A number of parks offer the ambience of a seaside community, such as Point Hudson Marina & RV Park, a short walking distance from historic Victorian Seaport with its quaint shops and restaurants.
  • Rustic lakesides are the norm for RV parks like Spring Creek Marine and RV Park in Texas, where guests can boat, water ski, or swim in a beautiful constant-level body of water.

Facts about Waterfront RV Traveling

Pristine stretches of marshland, punctuated by small islands known as hammocks, define the breathtaking landscape of the Georgia Golden Isles. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Pristine stretches of marshland, punctuated by small islands known as hammocks, define the breathtaking landscape of the Georgia Golden Isles. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

According to a study by PKF Consulting, 48 percent of RVers hit the water to go fishing, while 14 percent of RV travelers go canoeing and kayaking.

A report from the National Marine Manufacturers Association shows that boating has been taken up by 88 million Americans, many of whom tow their watercraft by RV.

After years of anemic sales, powerboats have bounced back, with a 10 percent increase in sales in 2012 and another 5 to 10 percent expected in 2013.

Top Waterfront RV Parks

Arizona
Willow Beach RV & Campground, Willow Beach

British Columbia
Burnaby Cariboo RV Park And Campground, Burnaby

California
Campland On The Bay, San Diego
Mad River Rapids RV Park , Arcata
Mission Bay RV Resort, San Diego
Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort & Marina Newport Beach
Palms River Resort, Needles
Pirate Cove Resort, Needles
Pismo Sands RV Park, Oceano
Riverwalk RV Park & Campground, Fortuna
The RV Park of Rolling Hills, Corning

Florida
Beverly Beach Camptown RV Resort, Flagler Beach
Camp Gulf , Destin
Carrabelle Beach RV Resort, Carrabelle Beach
Daytona Beach RV Resort, Port Orange
Destin West RV Resort, Fort Walton Beach
North Beach Camp Resort, St. Augustine
Red Coconut RV Resort, Fort Myers Beach
Signature Motorcoach Resort at Naples, Naples

Gulf State Park, Alabama © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Gulf State Park, Alabama © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Georgia
River’s End Campground & RV Park, Tybee Island

Maine
Wild Acres RV Resorts, Old Orchard Beach

Massachusetts
Cape Cod Campresort & Cabins, East Falmouth
Peters Pond RV Resort, Sandwich

Michigan
Harbortown RV Resort, Monroe

New Jersey
Lake Laurie RV Resort And Campground, Cape May

North Carolina
Frisco Woods Campground, Frisco

Oregon
Beach Resort at Turtle Rock, Gold Beach

South Carolina
Lakewood Camping Resort, Myrtle Beach

Texas
Island RV Resort, Port Aransas
Spring Creek Marina & RV Park, Inc, San Angelo

Cajun Palms RV Resort consist of over 300 Deluxe RV Spots,12 Chalets,and 25 Cabins. RV spots have full hookups, 30- and 50-amp, 70+ channels of digital cable, and on-site water and sewer. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved
Cajun Palms RV Resort consist of over 300 Deluxe RV Spots,12 Chalets,and 25 Cabins. RV spots have full hookups, 30- and 50-amp, 70+ channels of digital cable, and on-site water and sewer. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved

Washington
Columbia Riverfront RV Park, Woodland
Point Hudson Marina & RV Park, Port Townsend

Good Sam RV Travel Guide

A different category of Top Parks will be featured each month in articles released by the Good Sam RV Travel Guide.

In addition to comprehensive listings of RV parks and campgrounds across North America, the 2014 Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory features travel itineraries, helpful maps, and informative tips that RVers need for a journey anywhere in North America.

Additional camping and RV Travel information is available on the Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory Camping Blog.

Worth Pondering…

For all at last return to the sea—to Oceanus, the ocean river, like the ever-flowing stream of time, the beginning and the end.

—Rachel Carson, The Sea Around Us

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