Here’s the latest news about the coronavirus and how it is affecting the RV community. We will update this daily as news develops. If you learn of any developments that we should report, please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org .
UPDATES SINCE THIS WAS POSTED:
In Death Valley National Park, the following campgrounds are closed: Furnace Creek, Mesquite Spring, Texas Springs, Emigrant, Sunset and Stovepipe Wells. Furnace Creek and Stovepipe Wells Visitor Centers are also closed.
The Escapees RV Club has announced to members that all events currently scheduled through June 17 will be canceled or postponed. Events affected include Head-out Program (HOP) activities, Hangouts, Convergences, and RVers Boot Camps.
The National Park Service (NPS) has suspended the collection of all park entrance fees until further notice. More.
All events, activities, special event reservations, pavilion rentals and camping/cabin reservations at Florida State Parks have been canceled for the next 60 days. Camping will be closed Friday, March 20. The parks will remain open for day use; however, hours of operation have been reduced to 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty in New York are both closed. In Washington, D.C., the Washington Monument closed on March 14, along with Ford’s Theatre National Historic Site, the Old Post Office Tower and Belmont-Paul Women’s Equality National Monument.
In Oregon, the Oregon Coast Aquarium and Cape Perpetua Visitor Center are closed.
The FMCA Beaver Ambassador Club has cancelled its International Rally planned for Kerrville Texas, April 22. The FMCA chapter South Texas Renegades has cancelled its April 9, 10, 11 rally which was to be held at Pioneer Beach RV Resort, Port Aransas, Texas.
The 63rd Airstream Club International Rally (the WBCCI) scheduled for June 20-27, 2020, at The Ranch Events Complex, Loveland, Colorado, has been cancelled.
The North Carolina/South Carolina WIT Rally to be held at Ocean Lakes Family Campground in Myrtle Beach, SC, on May 1-3 has been cancelled.
San Francisco has shut down its cable cars, one of its biggest tourist attractions.
The Illinois Department of Natural Resources has closed all state parks. That also includes all fish and wildlife areas, recreational areas and historic sites, as well as the cancellation of upcoming scheduled events.
Coronavirus concerns have led the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to expand its state park closures zone to include Bucks, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery counties. State parks now closed to the public are Delaware Canal, Evansburg, Fort Washington, Marsh Creek, Neshaminy, Nockamixon, Norristown Farm, Ralph Stover, Ridley Creek, Tyler, Washington Crossing and White Clay Creek. Goat Hill Serpentine Barrens in William Penn State Forest also lies within the closure zone and is closed to the public.
The Visitor Center at Bryce Canyon National Park is closed. First-come, first-served camping remains available at North Campground.
The museum and visitor center at Gettysburg National Military Park will be closed through March 31.
Camping is closed at Mesa Verde National Park. As of March 17, the Chapin Mesa Museum, Visitor and Research Center, Spruce Tree Terrace, and Mesa Verde Museum Association stores are closed until further notice. Tours of Cliff Palace have also been cancelled until May 1. Where it is possible to adhere to the latest health guidance, Cliff Palace driving loop, Mesa Top driving loop, and the Far View Sites will remain open for visitors.
The elevators at Carlsbad Caverns are closed. The steep Natural Entrance Trail is open. Going down is easy, walking back up is a different story.
In Elkhart County Indiana, ground zero of RV manufacturing in America, local officials have closed schools. Nearby Goshen College has closed, and will opt for remote learning. RV factories continue to operate (but for how long?).
Adventure Caravans has rescheduled all its remaining March and April tours and is evaluating its May tours. Call if you have questions: (936) 327-3428.
Anthony Chabot campground near Castro Valley and the Del Valle campground southeast of Livermore are closed. Both are in Northern California.
The Saddlehorn Visitor Center in Colorado National Monument is closed.
All local Social Security offices are closed to the public for in-person service. The decision protects the population the agency serves — older Americans and people with underlying medical conditions — and its employees during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
In Utah, the Quarry Visitor Center and the Quarry Exhibit Hall in Dinosaur National Monument have closed.
Old Federal Campground, on Lake Lanier, northeast of Atlanta is reported to have closed.
U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted this morning (Wednesday) that the United State’s border with Canada will be “temporarily closing.” Trade and commerce between Canada and the U.S. will still continue, but tourists will be banned from crossing the border. There will be some exceptions. Stay tuned.
North Carolina’s 34 state parks, four recreation areas and three natural areas have suspended public operations. Park facilities, including visitor centers and campgrounds, will close, but trails and restrooms will remain open.
The National Park Service has closed visitors centers in the Great Smoky Mountains, Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Cape Lookout National Seashore, and the Wright Brothers National Memorial.
La Grande, Ore.–based RV manufacturers Northwood Manufacturing Inc. (NW) and Outdoors RV (ORV) announced in a press release that they are temporarily closing down their manufacturing facilities. More.
Tennessee State Parks remain open and entry is free. Campgrounds are open, some with full hookups. Minnesota State Park campgrounds are open, but many visitor services are closed.
Yosemite National Park, California State Parks and the U.S. Forest Service announced Monday that they are shutting down walk-in traffic at visitor centers. Yosemite officials said the park would shutter visitor centers and indoor exhibits through at least March 31. All outdoor spaces remain open.
As the coronavirus panic continues to empty store shelves of toilet paper, Dirty Dick’s Crab House in Nags Head on North Carolina’s Outer Banks is advertising a “free roll of toilet paper with every entree.”
FOR THE RECORD: The nation’s supply chain of toilet paper is well supplied. So no need to hoard.
In Massachusetts, campground closures include Beartown State Forest Campground in Monterey, Mohawk Trail State Forest Campground in Charlemont, Scusset Beach State Reservation Campground in Sagamore Beach, Daughters of the American Revolution Campground in Goshen, and Savoy Mountain State Forest Campground in Florida, Mass.
The 25th Annual RV SuperSaver Show in Fort Myers, Florida, has been canceled. The annual event was scheduled to take place at the CenturyLink-Lee County Sports Complex March 27 to 29.
Amazon is hiring an additional 100,000 employees to staff its warehouses and delivery network. It also plans to give its employees a $2-per-hour raise through April. The company told sellers and vendors on Tuesday that it was suspending shipments of all nonessential products to its warehouses until April 5 to deal with the increased workloads following the coronavirus outbreak. The change only affects shipments to Amazon’s warehouses, not the last-mile deliveries to consumers.
Some grocery stores are hiring workers to stock shelves, and work as delivery drivers and part-time cashiers. Among them: Safeway, Raleys, Albertsons, Whole Foods (Amazon), Andronico’s, Vons, H-E-B, Ralphs, Harris Teeter, Tom Thumb, Fred Meyer, King Soopers, and Pak ’N Save. Costco is also hiring. NBC 10 in Los Angeles reports that the Woodland Hills store has “an average of 1,300 people waiting outside” when it opens. Work campers may want to check with their local stores for job availabilities. Walmart says it is okay for now.
Domino’s Pizza is hiring. Check your local stores. Also, check before you head out for your next fish fry: many are being cancelled.
The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection has announced that the Garden State’s state parks, forests, recreation areas, wildlife management areas and historic areas will remain open to the public for passive recreation, like hiking, amid the spread of the coronavirus. But restrooms, visitor centers and campgrounds will be closed until further notice.
Zion National Park has suspended its shuttle operation. The park will remain open, and visitors will be allowed to drive through and park in the limited available parking.
MGM Resorts International announced Sunday it is temporarily suspending operations at all Las Vegas properties “until further notice.” The company operates the Bellagio, MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay, The Mirage, Luxor, New York-New York, Excalibur, and Park MGM.
The Harry M. Jackson Visitor Center at Washington State’s Mount Rainier National Park is closed.
FAKE NEWS: Snopes reports that text messages advising Americans that the president will order a “mandatory quarantine” or “national lockdown” within 48 to 72 hours because of the COVID-19 pandemic are bogus, the U.S. National Security Council said in a tweeted statement this week. The false messages had gone viral on social media.
Illinois governor JB Pritzker has ordered all restaurants and bars in the state closed to customers until at least March 30, in a sweeping measure aimed at slowing the spread of the coronavirus. Under the order, restaurants still will be able to serve customers at drive-through windows and curbside pickup. —Thanks to reader Bette Soloman for alerting us to this news.
And reader Melissa Wells reports that the governor ordered all Illinois State Parks closed, too, until further notice. If you have questions call (217)-882-6752.
Fantasy RV Tours has postponed its RV tour to the San Antonio Fiesta until November.
Indiana has ordered restaurants, nightclubs and bars to close dining-in services through the end of March. Takeout and delivery will still be allowed.
Grand Canyon National Park has cancelled interpretive talks as well as the interior interpretive venues at the visitor center.
Texas State Parks remain open. If you want to cancel your stay, cancellation fees will be waived. Call (512) 389-8900.
The Cajun RV Rally in Rayne, Louisiana, scheduled for April 2-7, has been cancelled and rescheduled for April, 2021.
Camping World’s stock has tanked along with other RV stocks. Here’s an insight into the company’s problems, titled “Camping World’s Achilles’ heel.”
The following Pennsylvania state parks are currently closed: Evansburg, Fort Washington, Norristown Farm, Ridley Creek, Marsh Creek, White Clay Creek, Delaware Canal, Nockamixon, Neshaminy, Ralph Stover, Tyler, Washington Crossing, Goat Hill and Serpentine Barrens. The public should avoid these parks.
Chick-fil-A is temporarily closing dining room seating to help limit person-to-person contact. Drive-thru still open.
Gov. Gavin Newsom of California has called for all people 65 and older to shelter at home and asked all bars, brewpubs, nightclubs and wineries to close. He said restaurants could remain open, but they must reduce current occupancy by half in order to allow for more “social distancing” among diners. In LA, all bars, restaurants, event centers, movie theaters, and gyms will close.
Golden Gate National Recreation Area, one of the largest urban national parks, has announced the closure of Alcatraz Island, the Golden Gate Bridge Welcome Center, and Marin Headlands Visitor Center, among others.
PLENTY OF FOOD: The nation’s biggest retailers, dairy farmers and meat producers say the surge of buying may have temporarily emptied shelves, but the food supply is fine.
Not only has New Mexico State Parks closed its campgrounds, but also closed are its Corps of Engineers (CEO) Parks, according to reader Candy Pitcher. “We were hit with the New Mexico State Park closures this weekend,” she wrote. “Reservation at Conchas Lake State Park – closed. Ranger told us to try COE campgrounds, so we continued our drive to Cochiti Lake COE just west of Santa Fe. Was open Friday morning, but by the time we arrived Friday late afternoon, they had closed without contacting anyone. There are RVers there, but no new campers allowed. We headed back to Santa Fe (SF Skies RV Park) to spend one night and re-plan. Saturday morning we headed out to Tent Rocks National Monument (which was open Friday evening) only to find it closed. Tribal Council has closed it for at least 3 weeks.
The New Hampshire Camping & RV Show, scheduled for March 27-29, has been canceled and rescheduled for September.
From San Antonio, Texas, from reader Teri Blaschke: The Sea World and Fiesta TX amusement parks are closed until further notice. Additionally, many RVers travel to Lackland AFB to watch their loved ones graduate and stay in San Antonio RV parks. While the parks are all open, Lackland is currently not permitting families to visit the base for graduations.
From reader Carrie Andress: Boondockers Welcome hosts are still welcoming guests as usual. Here is our latest blog post which has great tips for RVers.
The National WWII Museum in New Orleans has temporarily closed. Likewise, a significant number of national museums across the country, including the Smithsonian and all presidential museums and libraries, have already closed their doors to help support community health and well-being.
TOILET PAPER TIP: From readers Jim and Connie Bridge: “Your March 15 edition mentioned ordering toilet paper via Amazon.com. Consider sourcing through office supply firms. We ordered toilet paper through Staples.com, which delivered it free the next day. It also works for cleaning supplies.”
FMCA, the Family Motor Coach Association, canceled its March 26 to 29 International Rally in Tucson, Arizona. Up to 4,000 RVers were originally expected. Read more.
New Facebook Group: How the coronavirus is impacting RVers. Learn about park closings, cancelled rallies and RV shows — and more. Your input requested.
Due to New Mexico state banning public gatherings in response to coronavirus, all New Mexico State Parks are now closed to overnight camping. All 35 state parks will remain open for day use. The overnight camping ban will expire on April 9 unless extended. Visitors with overnight camping reservations will be issued a full refund. For details visit the State Parks website.
U.S. National Parks and their facilities remain open during the coronavirus epidemic in the United States while National Park Service (NPS) officials await further guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, agency staff said Thursday.
The Navajo Nation is moving to close all Navajo Nation Tribal Parks, including four popular sites in Arizona, due to concerns about the spread of the novel coronavirus. Closures in Arizona include Four Corners Monument, Little Colorado River Tribal Park, Canyon de Chelly Campground, and Lake Powell Navajo Tribal Park, also known as Antelope Canyon.
The Freightliner Chassis Owners Club has canceled its March 18-22 rally in Hemet, California. “The age group for rally participants is also of concern as many are in the over 60 population. Social distancing is difficult if not impossible at one of our rallies and the risk of community-spread is now considered too high to take a chance,” the group noted on its website.
The Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation has closed these campgrounds until at least April 1: Daughters of the American Revolution Campground, Goshen; Savoy Mountain State Forest Campground, Florida; Beartown State Forest Campground, Monterey; Mohawk Trail State Forest Campground, Charlemont; Scusset Beach State Reservation Campground, Sagamore Beach.
Yesterday, the National Park Service temporarily suspended elevator tours in the Washington Monument. Visitors may continue to enjoy the grounds as well as other monuments along the National Mall. Other closures include the Arlington National Cemetery, the Smithsonian Institution museums, and the National Zoo.
All events and group activities have been canceled at Florida State Parks. Day use and camping are unaffected.
Bayou Segnette State Park in Westwego, Louisiana, is closed to the public because of its proximity to New Orleans which had almost all of the state’s 67 confirmed COVID-19 cases as of Saturday afternoon. The park is being used as a possible overflow isolation area. Campground reservations have been canceled through April 13.
San Francisco will use RVs stationed throughout the city to house members of its homeless population who are infected with the coronavirus for self-quarantine. According to KTVU, the office of Mayor London Breed announced the plan Tuesday. It will apply to people who’ve tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, who have been exposed to it but don’t need hospitalization and who aren’t able to self-isolate in shared spaces like homeless shelters, SROs, or on the street. In King County, Wash., officials plans to turn 30 RVs into temporary housing for isolating infected persons.
The Augusta (Georgia) RV Show went off as planned this weekend at the Augusta Civic Center, but was limited to 250 people at a time.
At this time, all of Harvest Hosts 1,390 Hosts (including golf courses) are still available for overnight stays. A membership in Harvest Hosts allows free stays at any of these locations — most at farms, wineries, microbreweries and other unique locations.
Many casinos around the country have temporarily shut down. Encore Boston Harbor, the $2.6 billion dollar casino in Everett, Massachusetts, that opened last June, closed today for at least two weeks. The state’s gaming commission also closed Massachusetts’ other two casinos: the MGM Springfield and the Plainridge Park Casino. Other casinos have closed in Ohio, Rhode Island, Pennsylvania and Illinois. Many casinos in other states and on Indian reservations have closed down parts of their operations.
All large programs and large events at Fort Macon State Park in Georgia have been canceled through April 24.
Forget chowing down on free food samples at Costco: The warehouse club is no longer giving them out due to coronavirus concerns. Stay tuned.
California State Parks will suspend tours of Hearst Castle beginning tomorrow. The visitor center and its food service and gift shop will remain open.
Six Flags Magic Mountain in Valencia, Calif., has closed temporarily.
Effective last Friday all public programs, events and trainings in Pennsylvania State Parks and forests are canceled for the remainder of March and the month of April. With the exception of three state parks in Montgomery County, DCNR facilities throughout the state will remain open, pending any changes in COVID-19 spread. Camping is still permitted. More.
In response to coronavirus concerns, Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater in Mill Run, Pennsylvania, will be closed to the public from Sunday, March 15, through Saturday, March 28.
Fort Wilderness Campground at Walt Disney World in Florida is open and offering a 20% discount for stays Sunday through Thursday from March 29 to May 21. Disney World is closed (as is Disneyland in the West).
British Columbia, Alberta and Quebec have all banned events larger than 250 people.
Barring any future notices, the Alabama State Parks remain open and it’s business as usual. Visit its social media pages and alapark.com to stay informed on any future announcements.
Dockweiler Beach RV residents were asked to vacate the Los Angeles RV park on Friday “due to the need for emergency shelter related to the COVID-19 virus.” The park said that county emergency services required the space to shelter individuals impacted by the coronavirus.
Walmart said Saturday that it will modify its store hours. Beginning today, all of Walmart’s more than 4,700 U.S. stores will be open from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. until further notice. The company said the shortened hours will help employees restock shelves overnight and clean stores.
At first glance all looks normal in Las Vegas. But look closer: buffets are closing, nightclubs and day clubs are shuttering and resorts are using thermal cameras to screen guests for fevers – a symptom of the coronavirus.
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Florida will be temporarily closed as of March 16 until further notice for the health and safety of employees and guests to mitigate the spread of coronavirus.
Monaco International, a large chapter of FMCA, has canceled its pre-rally scheduled the week before the big international rally in Tucson, which was canceled on Friday.
The Good Sam Spring Rally (Samboree) scheduled for next month in Okeechobee, Florida, has been canceled.
Georgia state officials are preparing Hard Labor Creek State Park in Morgan County for isolating and monitoring patients who may have been exposed to the disease caused by the coronavirus. The government has already installed seven emergency trailers there and other related materials are on the way.
ANOTHER HEALTH CRISIS
In 1937, Dr. L.E. Burney and nurse Fran Miller traveled in a new travel trailer-laboratory just completed for the United States Public Health Service. The mobile lab was the latest weapon in war against syphilis. Here, a patient is interviewed in Washington, D.C. After a short stay there, the clinic-on-wheels, which was “fully equipped in every respect,” traveled to Georgia for use in a syphilis control project there. At the time, syphilis was a widespread problem and there was no safe and effective treatment.
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All scheduled programs and events have been canceled at Nevada State Parks through March. The parks remain open.
The famed music festival in Coachella, known for drawing hundreds of thousands to the California desert, many of them with RVs, has been postponed until October.
President Trump and Vice President Mike Pence said today that the administration is considering some domestic travel restrictions, specifically with regards to certain areas hard hit with the coronavirus. “We are considering a broad range of measures,” Pence added during the briefing. There have been internal discussions about restricting travel to areas in Washington state and other places considered “hot spots” for the virus.
Canceled or postponed RV Shows
The York RV Show in York, PA, scheduled for March 20-22, has been postponed.
The Sport, Boat, and RV show planned for this weekend at the Appalachian Wireless Arena in Pikeville, Kentucky, has been canceled.
This weekend’s 62nd annual Portland (Oregon) Metro Dealers RV Show has been canceled in connection with ongoing COVID-19 concerns.
The Sacramento Boat & RV Show has been canceled. It was originally scheduled for this weekend.
The 2020 Colorado Springs RV & Travel Expo has been canceled It was originally scheduled for April 2-4.
The Central Valley Sportsmen’s Boat and RV Show in Bakersfield, Calif., scheduled for this weekend, has been postponed to May 15-17 due to the coronavirus.
Michigan shows canceled: the 25th Port Huron RV & Camping Show, March 14-15, the 43rd Annual Flint RV & Camping Show, March 20-22, and the Northwest Michigan RV & Camping Show, March 27-29.
The 2020 Springfield (Illinois) RV Show has been canceled. It was originally scheduled for March 20-22.
The Central Oregon Sportsmen’s Show has canceled its event (that included RV displays) set for this weekend in Redmond, Oregon.
The 2020 Baton Rouge New Orleans RV Show, scheduled for later this week, has been postponed.
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