Saturday, December 10, 2022


Building an RV park from scratch: When it rains, it pours!


By Machelle James
There is one thing you can count on here in Arizona during the summer: Monsoon Season. It rains every day here anytime from noon to 8 p.m. It can be a light rain to a downpour with hail. That happened every day here for the last two weeks.

It has been making our chore list hard to do as we can’t cut or paint our wood outside like we normally do. We have trim for the doors, floors, walls and windows to work on and it’s just too damp right now to do it. So we wait!

We did have one great sunny day and sprayed texture on the interior walls and finished one coat of interior paint so far. AJ has installed all the lighting in our home as well. We drilled into the ceiling for 21 can lights to be installed. They work beautifully, as does my new bathroom vanity light. Also good news is we have the toilet installed in the cabin!

We had a get-together for my birthday with 13 neighbors that came over for a BBQ and beverages. Everyone had to use our RV bathroom, which as you all know, is a SMALL area! While we all had a fabulous time (yes, it rained then too), it was a realization that we needed to get a potty installed in the house!

Also great news is all our appliances were delivered last week and the cabinets are getting delivered today! We ordered the sinks already and have a contractor coming out to measure for the countertops next week. I am ordering the flooring as well next week. We need to have that done before we can install the appliances.

I think from this week on, we are going to be super busy finishing up our house ASAP! It will start cooling off up here in a month or so and I’d like to be settled in to see how warm/cold this house is once it’s put back together. We also have met with the local bank to secure loans, but the house needs to be done first to do it!

This Friday we meet with our engineering team for the first time. We get to draw out our ideas on paper and we will get the specs for how many spaces we can actually have with full hookups. We also get to learn how many wash machines, showers and restrooms we can have with the water limit.

I am so excited to see the topography of our land and the drone footage to see what it looks like from above and what it will look like when we cut down the shrubs, take out the fallen trees and clear out the overgrown weeds. We also get to see how many spots for RV storage we can have, along with where to put our check-in area and ramadas.

I have a feeling after this meeting I’ll have some great updates for you all for my next article. Also, cross fingers my kitchen will be installed!

Until then, thank you for following our journey and as always, see you in the trees! And please leave a comment!

Read Machelle’s previous articles here.

Machelle James and her husband, AJ, are building, from the ground up, a 15-acre RV park in Heber-Overgaard, Arizona, in the beautiful White Mountains 140 miles from Phoenix. Follow them on Facebook @ AJ’s Getaway RV Park or on Instagram at ajsgetawayrvpark.


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Peggy Harmann
3 years ago

Exciting developments! Hope the engineering meeting goes great! Jeff & Peggy H

Machelle James
3 years ago
Reply to  Peggy Harmann

Thank you Peggy! We do have exciting updates for you on our next article!!

Will Tory
3 years ago

Learned about your new campground a few months ago on another forum, but lost track. I’m happy to find about another campground on the Rim. Is it possible to make a reservation at this early date? Sign me as eagerly awaiting a camping site on the Rim!

Machelle James
3 years ago
Reply to  Will Tory

Hi Will! I’m glad you found us again! We aren’t accepting reservations yet as we don’t have an open date yet. We are shooting for next summer though. It depends on P&Z and how much work we can do during the winter. Please follow us here on or on Facebook at AJ’s Getaway RV Park for up to date information. Thank you so much for your support!

Thomas Becher
3 years ago

Any time line for opening the business. It looks like you haven’t started anything on the campgrounds yet.

Machelle James
3 years ago
Reply to  Thomas Becher

Thomas, we are shooting for next summer. We can’t start building on the property until we have been approved by P&Z. We can start knocking down shrubs though as now we have met with the Engineers! We now have an idea on what the lay of the land will look like.

3 years ago

One thing I would suggest in your layout of the full hookup spaces is to watch where the sewer hookup is. I have been in several parks where the sewer hookup is right by the front door of the trailer next door & the elec post is at the back of the space. I would much prefer the other way around.

Machelle James
3 years ago
Reply to  Robert

Yuck! I agree Robert. Our Engineers/General Contractor will place them in the most convenient and unobtrusive spots!! Plus, our spots will be 70′ apart from each other. So the sewer hose should not pose a problem!

3 years ago

Good for you. What will be the name of your park?

Machelle James
3 years ago
Reply to  Michael

Hi Michael! It will be, “AJ’s Getaway RV Park”
Thank you for asking!