That Was The RV Week That Was, April 6, 2019

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Here are your RV news highlights for the week of March 30 to April 5, 2019.

After another year of record sales, Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Camp-Resorts is targeting the Western USA with a new franchise expansion campaign. Targeted states are Arizona, California, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming. The system currently has more than 80 franchised campgrounds in the United States and Canada.


Get ready for an increase in full-time RVers. The growth rate of the 65-and-over population is three times greater than the total population growth rate, and Census Bureau projections show the difference lasting through 2030. In the RV industry, although some new units are sold to Gen Xers and Millennials, the bulk of the market is still older people. Most Baby Boomers are not yet 65 years old. The most common age now is 59. Of those Americans 65 years and older, about half are in the 65 to 73 category, an age in which many are exercising and fit. SOURCE: FORBES

Charitable donations made directly from a traditional IRA can save taxes. Folks age 70 1⁄2 and older can transfer up to $100,000 annually from IRAs directly to charity. The gifts count as all or part of your required minimum distribution. But you’re not taxed on them, and they’re not added to your adjusted gross income. Check with your tax professional to learn more.

Rocket RV called on some star power to kick off last weekend’s grand opening of its new dealership in Tanner, Ala., as country music legend Trace Adkins and his girlfriend, Victoria Pratt, fraternized with customers and signed paraphernalia Friday morning to help promote the event. The RV dealership carries Jayco and Airstream products. Adkins owns and travels in a Jayco fifth wheel.

Another reason to travel with an RV: After arriving at their Airbnb in Cork, Ireland, a family from New Zealand made an unsettling discovery: a hidden camera, livestreaming from the living room. Once the family had unpacked, Andrew Barker, who works in IT security, scanned the house’s Wi-Fi network which revealed a live feed concealed in what appeared to be a smoke alarm or carbon monoxide detector. The host was banned from the Airbnb network.

Delaware State Police Financial Crimes Unit has arrested a Laurel, Delaware, RV dealer on fraud-related charges. William G. Carey Jr., 57, of Salisbury, Maryland, is alleged to have taken used motorhomes and travel trailers on consignment then resold them without paying off the previous liens. Troopers say Carey would then submit falsified sales invoices to the banks and department of motor vehicles. If you believe you are a victim of this crime, call Delaware Crime Stoppers at 1-800-TIP-3333 or visit delaware.crimestoppersweb.com.

The investigation into the cause of a massive fire March 12 at a Forest River plant in Elkhart is continuing with heavy equipment clearing away debris to help determine the fire’s origin. Fire investigators at the plant that manufactured Vibe travel trailers have not ruled out the incident as a possible intentional act.

Yuck! People who live by Elephant Butte State Park near Truth or Consequences, NM, say they’ve spotted RVs dumping their raw sewage on the lakeshore. Jared Bartoo is a park regular. He said RVs race to get the best spots on the beach. Later, they don’t want to give up their prime spots or wait in line at the two working dump stations. “They’re pulling the valve open as they’re leaving, and there’s sewer here and there along the beach,” Bartoo said.

Photo: KIRO-TV

Washington state’s Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office and Snohomish County Public Works worked together last week to clear nearly 12 tons of garbage and three derelict RVs from a block in Lynnwood on Thursday.  Deputies said the RVs had increased crime in the neighborhood and “decreased the quality of life for neighboring residents.”

Flooding from the Sacramento River has temporarily closed the Marina RV Park in Redding, California. The flooding is a result of increased water releases from the Keswick Dam this week. Forty RV spots were completely underwater Friday when a local TV station visited.

In the months leading up to its receivership, Erwin Hymer Group North America was shipping a new line of travel trailers with critical components that weren’t yet certified by the Canadian Standards Association, reports the Waterloo Region Record. Documents filed in court by Erwin Hymer receiver Alvarez and Marsal state the running gear on the Touring trailers (including the axle, brakes, hitch and the breakaway device that activates the trailer’s brakes if it comes loose from the tow vehicle) had not yet been tested for Canadian Standards Association (CSA) compliance before dozens were shipped to RV dealers across Canada and the United States. Read more.


KOA’s Campground of the Future display at the recent RVX RV industry trade show envisions campers being able to use their “smartwatch” to order firewood, which will be delivered by a drone. Other amenities on KOA’s radar include cabins with retractable roofs and underwater cabins.

Heartland’s Cyclone Ultimate Tailgate trailer sports more than half a dozen TVs, a built-in keg fridge, dual decks, an indoor/outdoor hot tub, and a garage bar. Four 55-inch HD TVs are located in a row opposite a five-seat recliner couch and above the bar area. The wall at the end of the TV lineup houses the heart of the massive audio system, which includes 18 powered speakers and eight subwoofers in total. Anybody for a little “roughing it?”

(click to enlarge)

If you still hanker to grab a surfboard to hang ten, but like to hole up in comfort after a day of riding the waves, then you might want to book a stay at the Truck Surf Hotel. It’s an RV on steroids that can pull right up on the beach and offer you a luxurious ocean view and creature comforts like full-time staff assistance, use of a surfboard and wetsuit, surf lessons and/or guiding, and local city tours. Optional add-ons like massages and food tastings are also available. Not too bad, eh?

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Gene Cheatham

Heartland’s Cyclone trailer mentioned above with enough apparent audio power to push it down the road would be horrendous to be in the same park with. Talk about too loud! So goes peace and quiet. Course with some of the horror stories with Heartland it may not make it to the cg.

John T

Firewood deliveries by drone? Another reason to stay away from KAO.