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  • 13 May 2014 1:19 PM | KOA Owners Association (Administrator)

    Article by Jim Meenan

    A panel discussion was held Thursday with some of the leaders in the RV industry at the RV Industry Power Breakfast at the RV/MH Hall of Fame. In a wide-ranging discussion, they talked about the current boom that is going on in the industry and some of the issues that they are now facing in terms of labor, materials and delivery. Participants included: Forest River's Doug Gaeddert, who is also board chairman of the Recreation

    Vehicle Industry Association, Thor's Bob Martin, Jayco's Derald Bontrager and three executives from suppliers -- Airxcel's Mel Adams, Lippert Components' Jason Lippert and Patrick's Todd Cleveland. Here are some of the highlights.

    Q. What's next for the RV Industry? Amid all the recent success, what's on the horizon?

    A. Gaeddert: We are obviously motoring in a really strong direction right now. The immediate future I think looks good. We are in a sweet spot in the industry from all standpoints, whether it be demographics, popularity, a push for more physical activities. As far as challenges, inside the industry, short-term ones are obvious: transportation, labor and material shortages. Long term the challenge to continue to grow it are to satisfy our customers. External factors -- it's going to take something like a crazy situation exploding in Ukraine, or something that puts unnatural pressure on oil prices.

    Martin: We have bright days ahead of us because of the demographic. All the opportunities we have of people who are not actually camping yet. They are tent campers. They are taking that next step. We look at that as great opportunities for everybody in this room.

    Bontrager: The RV industry is really a mirror of what's happening in our economy. The customers never left us. They sat on the sidelines for a period of time during the recession. That's been a big piece of our rapid growth the last three years. What I see going forward is I think we are going to be in a prolonged period of growth.

    Lippert: From our perspective I feel real solid that this industry was hit arguably the hardest in the recession. Being in manufacturing it's a lot tougher than a lot of other businesses in the recession. We all learned a lot of important lessons in the recession.

    I think we all feel positive about where the industry is going, and it hasn't felt this good in a long time. But as an industry we are probably well positioned to recover from anything that hits us between the eyes.

    Q. Amid the September open houses, what's the future of the trade shows such as Louisville for both the near future and long-term?

    A. Bontrager: We also have to remember when we talk about the Louisville show that we are a consolidating industry. We have fewer manufacturers, fewer suppliers, fewer dealers involved in the business. I think the Louisville show provides a lot of value. The open houses have kind of grown a life of their own. It's been good for the industry.

    Adams: It's really the only showcase of the North American RV industry and maybe internationally to some degree. As a supplier at that show, it's always a great opportunity to see everyone else in the industry, see all the manufacturers. But I also think it's probably the only place where we are showcasing the industry and attract national media.

    Cleveland: The Louisville show is absolutely necessary.

    From the supplier side, we continue to support Louisville.

    Martin: For us definitely there will be a continued presence for the open house. We are anchored right here. For Thor, it will be bigger than last year. We are doing what the dealers are asking us to do. The dealers really seem to enjoy the time of the year, coming in and seeing new models. It's a great time for them to come by. It's a little bit before Louisville. That way they can get their product in before spring shows. Forest River really started this and it's just grown. I still see a great importance for both.

    Gaeddert: It's turned into a somewhat predictable cycle. which has been very healthy for the entire industry, suppliers, dealers, manufacturers, campgrounds, finance companies, etc. (The shows) complement each other extremely well. The demand is there for both of those events. We are going to continue to do what the market wants us to do, in this case, the dealer base wants us to do. It's here to stay for now. It's very good for the industry.

    Q. With every-body working who wants to work, where does the industry get employees from locally? Or does the industry just expand elsewhere?

    A. Gaeddert: The cool thing is we've gone from a 20 percent rate of unemployment down to 5.8. That's like dropping 150 pounds in a short period of time. It's great news that we are where we are at now. Somebody brought it up earlier, our core work force in this area is the reason companies are focused in concentrating in this area. This area is full of good people that have great skill sets and build high-quality products and deliver high-quality service. Plain and simple, that's why it's here.

    As far as moving outside because of the employment issue, I think that's a tough one. If you look back there's 70 to 80 years of culture in this area with this work force. It's pretty tough to go replicate that somewhere. The second thing is the supplier base and the distribution channels. So it's going to be tough. Companies are going to have to separate themselves by being the best place to work, how they take care of folks. We are going to have competition for labor. But at the end of the day, part of the solution is working together and trying to bring that 5.8 down further and become steadier.

    Martin: For me, we are based in northern Indiana and Ohio. This is where the supplier base is. It would be really hard to move out of the area. The challenge is to bring more people into the area. You do that by creating a great company that people will want to work at.

  • 21 Feb 2014 10:40 AM | KOA Owners Association (Administrator)

    Please be advised if you need an RV Show Certificate of Insurance you can email the following information to us at


    Who the certificate is to be made out to

    Place the show will be held

    Show Address

    Contact at the Show

    If you need any additional information please let us know by calling 800-678-9976 or from CANADA 888-461-2062 or email us at


  • 01 Feb 2014 9:00 AM | KOA Owners Association (Administrator)

    JUAN CARLO/THE STAR Run or Dye participants run away from the powder during Saturday’s fundraiser for the Ventura YMCA and the Boys & Girls Club of the Santa Clara Valley. The event was held at the KOA campground just west of Santa Paula.


    KOA campground just west of  Santa Paula, hosted a Run or Dye event Saturday where more than 7,000 people created a rainbow of colors to benefit the Ventura YMCA and the Boys & Girls Club of the Santa Clara Valley.  Campground owner Scott Cory told VCStar he jumped at the chance to host the event after he was approached by organizers.

    The landscape may be gray and brown, but at the KOA campground just west of Santa Paula, more than 7,000 people created a rainbow of colors during the Run or Dye event.

    “This is the best exposure we’ve ever had for the campgrounds. There are over 7,000 runners today,” Cory explained to VCStar. “We like to be active in the community, and there are hundreds of volunteers who came to help out.”

    According to VCStar the 5K course followed a path through the campgrounds with intermittent stations where runners were doused with powdered, nontoxic, water-soluble pink, orange, blue, green or purple dyes.  Run or Dye participants run away from the powder during Saturday’s fundraiser for the Ventura YMCA and the Boys & Girls Club of the Santa Clara Valley.  The event was held at the KOA campground just west of Santa Paula.

  • 31 Jan 2014 10:00 AM | KOA Owners Association (Administrator)

    Gulf Stream Coach Inc. has launched the new 25SBW floorplan in its Conquest/Innsbruck travel trailer line, featuring a rear kitchen design and upscale amenities normally found in larger, more expensive trailers.

    According to a press release, the 25SBW borrows key design features of the best-selling Conquest/Innsbruck 295SBW. The floorplan offers a gourmet-friendly, full-width rear kitchen with extensive cabinetry, storage drawers, an L-shaped counter and double-door refrigerator. The main living space uses a deep slideout to provide room for a comfy sofa, dinette with under-seat storage, and a floor-to-ceiling entertainment center with a multi-function home theater sound system and connections for an optional LED HD TV.

    “The rear kitchen design of the 25SBW is a retail champion in two ways,” said National Sales Manager Randy Baskerville. “It has immediate appeal when RV shoppers find it on dealers’ lots, with its high-quality cabinetry and spacious sunlit workspace. But more than that, RVers soon realize how practical and convenient it is on the campsite, enabling everyone to share the casual camping lifestyle without making the cook stand in the middle of the main living area.”

    In spite of its compact size, the 30-foot 25SBW gives owners a true master bedroom with a solid panel privacy door, a walk-around queen bed with under-bed storage, mirrored shirt closet, wardrobe, and overhead cabinets.  A mounting point and wiring for a wall-mount flat screen TV is also included.

    Gulfstream also designed an en suite bath with two entry doors – one from the main living area hall, the other from a private door in the master bedroom.  A large corner shower with a solid-panel enclosure and shower door is featured in the bath.

    With a dry weight under 5900 pounds and durable construction, the 25SBW is “a high-reward, high-value alternative for campers who like to travel light and easy,” noted Baskerville.

  • 03 Jan 2014 1:59 PM | KOA Owners Association (Administrator)

    You may want to let your campers know:

    Double Camel in cooperation with Lionshead Specialty Tire & Wheel LLC is recalling certain Vail Sport ST LH 99 tubeless trailer tires, size 225/75D15, load range D, DOT code 69, manufactured from July 14, 2013, through July 27, 2013, (and a sidewall date code 2813 or 2913), according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

    Double Camel in cooperation with Lionshead Specialty Tire & Wheel LLC is recalling certain Vail Sport ST LH 99 tubeless trailer tires, size 225/75D15, load range D, DOT code 69, manufactured from July 14, 2013, through July 27, 2013, (and a sidewall date code 2813 or 2913), according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

    The affected tires may fail under prolonged use and may become unseated from the rims.
    Failure or unseating of the tire increases the risk of a crash.

    Due to the risk of failure, these tires fail to comply with the requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 119, “New Pneumatic Tires for Vehicles Other Than Passenger Cars.”

    Lionshead will notify owners, and dealers will replace the tires with compliant ones. The manufacturer has not yet provided a notification schedule. Customers may contact Lionshead at 1-574-533-6169.

  • 02 May 2013 11:52 AM | KOA Owners Association (Administrator)
    This may be of interest to our Canadian members:

    A free listing is available for campground / RV Park owners in Canada, from Campgrounds of Canada.  When you use the special coupon code FREELISTING (all uppercase!) then your listing will be free, but third party advertisements will be shown on your listing. Other than that it is the same as a paid listing. You will gain a high quality, professional looking, full page advertorial and you are in full control. With our strong SEO features your listing will be found.
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