The latest news about camping and developments in North American campgrounds and RV parks from Janet Groene and, sometimes, the staff of RVtravel.com
DISCLAIMER: Information is believed current at press time but conditions can change quickly. Check ahead for specifics about dates, rates and rules, as well as a campground’s location, site sizes and conditions, reservation policies and road conditions in the area. No endorsement of any campground or product is implied by this reporter nor this website.
DATELINE: January 11, 2019
ALABAMA STATE PARK CELEBRATES CULTURES
The Ballyhoo Festival is a barrel of fun at a state park that has almost 500 campsites and eleven bathhouses plus sugar bowl beaches, fishing and frequent events. On March 7-8, cultural arts are front and center as visiting artists showcase dance, live music, local seafood and international arts of all types at Gulf State Park, Gulf Shores. Note that Highway 135 has been widened, upgraded and renamed State Park Road. A barrier now protects walkers and bikers.
ALBERTA CAMPS OPEN FOR RESERVATIONS
Parks Canada opened reservations on January 7 for the April 2020 to March 2021 season.
Jasper National Park will be the first in Alberta to take reservation, with Pocahontas, Wabasso, and Whirlpool campgrounds and most others opening in May. Wapiti campground and Palisades cabins are open year-round for reservations. Whistlers Campground is reported to be closed for reconstruction until 2021.
COLORADO JUNIOR RODEO SEASON OPENS IN MARCH
Sky Ute Fairgrounds in Ignacio is the site of the inaugural True West Junior Rodeo on March 14. Events will include junior bull riding, junior steer riding, mutton bustin’, junior calf roping, junior team roping, junior barrels, junior breakaway, junior poles, junior flag race, and a few surprises. RV travelers will find 64 full-hookup campsites plus laundry and showers. This year’s True West rodeo schedule will consist of nine rodeos to be on Wednesdays, June 3 – August 5, at the La Plata County Fairgrounds in Durango.
NE FLORIDA CAMPGROUND DEBUTS IN MARCH
Just off I-10 west of Jacksonville, Island Oaks Campground will offer spacious sites and a resort experience when it opens in March. Cable TV and WiFi are free. Camp by the lake or under shady trees. Choose from 350 sites, some pull-through and some back-in, with electric, water and sewer. Premium 100-foot sites have 100-amp electric. Waterways thread through the resort, giving it a tropical look. The park has a laundry, general store, propane refill and rental golf carts, bicycles and Segways. Call (904) 420-7822 for reservations and Grand Opening details.
FLORIDA CAMPGROUNDS REOPEN AFTER HURRICANE
St. Andrews State Park in the Florida Panhandle took massive damage more than a year ago in Hurricane Michael but recovery is on track. The park recently reopened 60 of the 176 campsites and is accepting applications for camping through March 31. The storm also damaged the park’s beaches. Erosion knocked down the pavilions and damaged the boardwalks but the Gun Mount Pavilion is now reopened. The number of sites and the reservation window will vary as the construction progresses.
GEORGIA STATE PARK PADDLES THROUGH HISTORY
When Lake Seminole was created by a flood control project years ago, many villages and historic sites were consigned to a watery grave. Rediscover them now in a 2 1/2-hour, 1.5-mile paddle on Saturday afternoons starting February 1. The $15 fee includes kayak rental. Learn about the old Spanish mission, a Native American ceremonial ground and other historic treasures that are now under water. Wear shoes you don’t mind getting muddy and wet. Bring bug spray and drinking water. The adventure is open to anyone over age 6 who can swim. Seminole State Park, near Donalsonville, has 50 RV sites. Make site-specific reservations.
LOUISIANA PARK HAS ATV EVENT
It’s fun to watch and even more fun if you bring your own ATV for the Cajun Muddy Gras to be held February 13-16. Decorate the ATV for Mardi Gras, then get muddy at Muddy Bottoms ATV & Recreation Park in Sarepta. The park has campsites with hookups, 5,000 acres of trails, a pro shop and movies under the stars. During this event anyone can enter the poker run. On Saturday night a concert in the amphitheater features Mark Chesnutt. (318) 377-3800
OHIO CAMPGROUND HOSTS COUNTRY FEST 2020
Tickets and reservations are already going fast for the annual county music concert to be held June 18-20 at Clay’s Park Resort south of Canal Fulton. Headliners start with Brett Eldredge on the first day, Dierks Bentley on the second day and Jon Pardi ending the event on Sunday evening. Go to thecountryfest.com for full RV camping details and rules. The three-day Festival Camping ticket includes all 12 star-spangled concerts and three nights of camping, Thursday through Saturday. Tickets are per person, not per site. Packages are priced with and without electric and water. Deluxe tickets also have access to the water park, indoor pool, restaurant, store, fishing lake and any activities held at the camping resort. (330) 854-6691.
MISSISSIPPI STATE PARK TO HAVE BENEFIT FOOT RACE
Soli Deo Gloria Trail Run follows a 5-mile trail in beautiful Lake Lowndes State Park, Columbus, on March 7. The five-mile loop is 3.7 miles of single track trails through the woods and around the lake, ending on 1.3 miles of road. By trail running standards it’s an easy course, but there are some hills and roots. It’s a cup-less race so bring your own water or go without. Walkers/hikers are welcome as well as leashed pets. Sign up by February 21st to be guaranteed a tee shirt. Awards will be given at the end of the race. All proceeds benefit a future mission trip to Honduras. Lake Lowndes State Park near New Hope has 50 developed campsites plus fishing, water skiing, boating, a laundry, tennis courts, playing fields and playgrounds.
Janet Groene is the author of more than 25 books including Living Aboard Your RV, 4th Edition, available at Amazon.com. Her brand-new book, “March Malice, a Yacht Yenta Mystery,” is available at Amazon.com. See Janet Groene’s weekly Solo Woman posts at SoloWomanRV.
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