Campground Spotlight: Greenbrier Campground

Campground: Greenbrier Campground
Interviewees: Courtney Belmont, Owner
Location: Gatlinburg, Tennessee
Website: Greenbrier Campground

What is unique about your property?

Greenbrier Campground, in the heart of the Great Smoky Mountains, is surrounded by the Little Pigeon River. This stream descends from the National Park and is full of many species of trout. The campground is unique, as it is located on an “island”, accessible by small bridge. Most of our RV sites back up to the river and those that do not are only a short walk away.


 

Tell us more about your campground.

The campground offers all full hook-up RV sites, tent sites with water/electricity, RV rentals, bell tent rentals, and a camping cabin. Luxury bathhouses, laundry facilities, game room, pavilion for group activities, and church service on Sunday.

 

What is unique about your property?

We do not have a pool, but we have a “natural” swimming hole and beach area in the campground, for hours of summertime fun. The river is accessible for tubing (which is a favorite activity) for children and brave adults. The mountain water is cold, even in the peak summer months.

In addition to the river, we offer a playground, gaga ball, volleyball, basketball, cornhole, and children’s activities during the peak season. Friday night “movies on the grass” for all ages.

How did you get into the camping industry?

Greenbrier Campground has been in business for decades, however new ownership completely renovated in 2016.

 

 

How has Campspot’s reservation software benefited your campground?

Campspot is a new platform for us. We are learning all the in’s and out’s and so far the system is very user-friendly. I believe the best part (so far) is the ease for the customer on the mobile and desktop version. We are seeing more online bookings than before, which slows down our call frequency. 

Greenbrier Campground is the perfect vacation destination while you explore The Great Smoky Mountains, Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies, visit local theater shows, and more! To stay connected with Greenbrier Campground, follow them on Facebook and Instagram.

Campground Spotlight: Time Away RV Resort

Campground: Time Away RV Resort
Interviewees: Alicia Lawson, Co-Owner
Location: Lincoln, Alabama
Website: www.timeawayrvresort.com

 

How did you get into the camping industry?

My husband Nate Lawson camped a lot as a kid, and he introduced camping to me when we first got married 30 years ago. We’ve called Ohio home for a long time, and now we’re new RV owners and operators in Lincoln, Alabama.

 

 

Tell us more about your brand new RV resort.

We hosted our grand opening celebration in June on our 13-acres of property with 200 sites. We also offer a discounted monthly stay rate. Our on-site amenities include a private bbq area with a firepit and bathhouses and 30 & 50 amp full hookup service. We’re in the process of adding a pool and have more great amenities on the way as part of our three-phase construction plan.

 

 

What is unique about your property?

Our property is unique because we will have the first swimming pool in Lincoln, Alabama, and we are located within walking distance of NASCAR Talladega Superspeedway. We’re the perfect destination for NASCAR racing enthusiasts because people can camp so close to the action.

 

 

What is your favorite feature of Campspot and why?

My favorite feature of Campspot is the overall ease of use for customers. You can’t beat online booking!

 

 

Tell us your favorite story related to your business.

As a veteran family, we’ve given our campers a unique opportunity to be a permanent part of our park and give back with “Pave the Path.” Our plan is to create a Veteran Hero Walking Trail that will showcase commemorative and personalized bricks for purchase for years to come as part of the history of Time Away RV Resort. This is a great way for campers to honor a special hero in their lives. Campers interested in purchasing a brick can email us at timeawayrvresort@gmail.com.

Campground Spotlight: Durham Bridge RV Resort

Campground: Durham Bridge RV Resort Ltd. (DBRV)
Location: Durham Bridge, New Brunswick
Owner: Kari & Rob Davis
Website: dbrv.ca

How did you get into the camping industry?

For a few years before we opened the campground, we had talked about what we wanted to do in retirement. We knew that we could not just sit around and stare at each other! We also wanted the time to travel. So, we talked about what made us the most happy over the years and the same memories kept coming up in conversation: “Remember that camping trip when…?” As camping is a seasonal sport out here on the east coast of Canada, we would have our winters to travel.

We started looking for campgrounds in western Canada, where we are both from (British Columbia). Unfortunately, no property really gave us that “Yup! This is the right one” kind of feeling. So, we expanded our search for a campground to the rest of Canada and discovered the amazing opportunities on the east coast! In 2017, we made the life-changing decision to sell most of what we had, leave the friends and family we knew, and drive across the country to a place we had never been in search of new adventures!

In June of 2017, we purchased our own campground, which sits between the Nashwaak River and the New Brunswick trail system just north of Fredericton, NB. We celebrated Canada’s 150th by opening DBRV and haven’t looked back! It’s been a lot of work and a ton of fun. This is home now, and we are happier here than we ever could have imagined!
 

Durham Bridge RV Resort

 

What is unique about your property?

Our location sets us apart! It offers access to the beautiful Nashwaak River where you can hop on a floaty and enjoy the scenery. Or, start up an ATV and go for a ride on the expansive New Brunswick trail system. We also installed a new inground pool, which provides a nice place to cool off when you are done playing in the river or riding the trails.

Our smaller size is unique as well. It’s about 700 meters to complete the entire loop of the campground. We see campers of all ages walking or riding around the loop and visiting friends as they go! We feel that we have the best happy camper community out there. Whether a short-term or seasonal camper, you will make new friends here at DBRV— probably at Friday night cards in the clubhouse!

How has Campspot’s reservation system benefited your campground overall?

The biggest benefit we have experienced from Campspot is their online booking and payment functionality. I no longer need to be close to my computer to make a booking because I can simply send a link that allows the camper to select the spot they want and make the payment online. This has allowed us the freedom to spend more time with the campers or working on the property.
 

Durham Bridge RV Resort

 

What is your favorite feature of Campspot and why?

The online booking takes the cake! Being able to see both list and map views of the sites allows me to know quickly, easily, and confidently where each camper is and who is coming and going! Also, the ability to make notes in the camper files is great. Being able to make sure they are in a preferred spot or to invite them to return for a family event like a birthday or anniversary has been very well received.

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

The most rewarding part of running our campground is getting to know our guests and to see all of the happy campers laughing and enjoying their stays! We also never get tired of catching up with returning campers.
 

Durham Bridge RV Resort

 

Tell us your favorite story related to your business or experience with a customer.

For us, one of our favorite experiences is when a camper has come to stay with us for the first time and before the end of their stay has asked to extend their trip or already booked another visit because they love it so much here!

Is there anything else you’d like to share about your business?

We are a small, friendly campground and that is exactly how we want to keep it! Feedback from our campers is encouraged and always considered when we make decisions about events and improvements to the property or amenities.

Campground Spotlight: Campfire Ranch on the Taylor, Colorado

Campground: Campfire Ranch on the Taylor
Location: Almont, Colorado
Owner: Sam Degenhard, Founder & Owner
Website: campfireranch.co/onthetaylor

Campground Spotlight: Campfire Ranch on the Taylor, Colorado

Tell us about yourself. How did you get into the camping industry and acquire this property?

I had the pleasure of growing up in a camping family where we spent most of our weekends and vacations RVing or on trips with Scouts – camping has always been a passion of mine but was never a career interest until I graduated from university in Colorado and found myself in Los Angeles.
 

Degenhard Family
 
While living and working in Southern California, I constantly needed to escape the city and spent most of my weekends trying to go camping. What I quickly realized is that there aren’t many great campgrounds out there designed to cater to 20-somethings and I felt out of place wherever I went. I channeled this frustration and went to grad school to study the outdoor industry and launch Campfire Ranch. We’re building campgrounds for the experience generation.
 
Campfire Ranch on the Taylor
 

What is unique about your property?

Our first campground is called Campfire Ranch on the Taylor, which is located along the Taylor River between Gunnison and Crested Butte, Colorado. We operate similar to a concessionaire on City-owned land that was previously a primitive campground for 20+ years. Under our management, the campground got a serious facelift, new amenities, and some much needed maintenance. At our campground, we offer a full suite of brand-name camping equipment for our campers to demo. We will even set up your campsite for you before arriving. We also have an Adventure Concierge service that takes all the hassle out of trip planning. We work with many great outfitters and guides to provide package experiences for our guests.
 

Campfire Ranch on the Taylor
 

Can you explain more about these unique vendor partnerships and camper offerings?

At Campfire Ranch we want to provide the most welcoming and reliable experience possible so that new campers feel comfortable as our customers. In order to do this, we see tremendous value in building trusted relationships with both local outfitters and top outdoor industry brands that stand for the same values as we do. We also provide a unique opportunity for these partner businesses to get their products in the hands of a hard-to-reach demographic right here at camp. We’re proud to be working with brands like YETI Coolers, The North Face, and Camp Chef to provide our Adventure Demo equipment this season.
 

Campfire Ranch on the Taylor
 

How has Campspot’s reservation software benefited your campground?

Campspot is an outstanding tool and has greatly contributed to our success in our first season. We operate off-grid using solar power and hotspot connections, so having a reliable booking engine and PMS system is crucial. With Campspot, we trust that customers can easily book a site, see our availability, select add-on demo gear at checkout, and easily communicate with us if needed. The customer support and education has been a huge help, too. Our account manager always answers or calls us right back to offer solutions and guidance.

What is your favorite feature within Campspot?

I love the reporting function and the many report types Campspot provides. As a new business, it is important for us to analyze our performance closely and on a regular basis – the reporting function helps us do that. The tool allows for reports to be self-generated by our team, so we don’t need to make any requests or wait to get our hands on our data. The information about our customers and our performance has allowed us to make some key business decisions this summer, which I couldn’t live without it!
 

Campfire Ranch on the Taylor
 

Tell us your favorite story from working in this industry.

My favorite experience is when I get to meet and help first-time campers. Many of these customers have never set foot in a campground, let alone set up a tent or started their own campfire. Providing that guidance is so rewarding; plus watching them fall in love with the outdoors through camping and our campground. I look forward to moments like this all summer!
To stay connected with Campfire Ranch, follow them on Facebook and Instagram.
 

Campfire Ranch on the Taylor
 

Campground Spotlight: Lynn Ann’s Campground

Campground: Lynn Ann’s Campground
Location: Saint Germain, Wisconsin
Owner: Heather Davidson
Website: lynnannscampground.com

Campspot Interview with Heather Davidson

How did you get into the camping industry?

I am a second generation campground owner. My father bought the grounds in 1966. The campground was built in 1959 by Lyndon and Ann Duescher, and we kept the same name. After my husband did a 5-year trial managing the park, we bought the grounds from my dad in 1996 and have run it ever since. You could say it’s in my blood.

What is unique about your property?

Lynn Ann’s campground is located on the beautiful Big St. Germain Lake, which is part of a chain of three lakes. It’s also a top fishing lake in Wisconsin.

 

Lynn Ann’s Campground

 

How has Campspot benefited your campground overall?

Campspot has simplified every part of our reservation and accounting system. My account manager is a gem, and I’m so happy with the quality customer service I consistently receive.

What is your favorite Campspot feature and why?

I simply love that campers can make their own reservations online! I also really like that I can add pictures and detailed descriptions to each of our listed site types.

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

I love making someone’s vacation the best it can be. Our property provides a truly special and unique experience for all who camp with us.

 

Lynn Ann’s Campground

 

Tell us your favorite story related to your business or experience with a customer.

In 1999, a customer caught so many fish on our lake that they had a fish fry and invited all of the neighboring sites. The next year, the neighboring sites went fishing too, and then they expanded the fish fry to more neighbors. We have the fish fry every year to this day with the same people and the whole campground participates!

 

Lynn Ann’s Campground

 

Is there anything else you’d like to share?

We’re incredibly proud of our 89% return rate. Some of our customers have even camped here since 1964 before it was ours!
We love sharing stories from members of the Campspot Family. If you’d like us to showcase your park for free and share with the world what makes your park special, email us at marketing@campspot.com to get started!

Campground Spotlight: Country Lane River Resort

Campground: Country Lane River Resort
Location: Kingston, Idaho
Owners: LE McDaniel & Amy Rex

Website: CountryLaneRiverResort.com

Campground Spotlight: Country Lane River Resort, Idaho

 

Amy Rex & LE McDaniel

 

How did you get into the camping industry?

My mom, Amy, and I used to manage a motel in West Glacier, Montana. Within the first two years, we took the property from 1 & 2 star ratings to 4 & 5 star ratings on TripAdvisor! Because we had so many ideas, we decided we wanted something of our own and to expand.

What is unique about your property?

We are a year-round RV and camping resort located on the Coeur d’Alene River in northern Idaho. We have a full bar, a restaurant with homemade cooking, lodging at our River Inn, an expansive game room, and plenty of parking. We also have space for beautiful weddings or special events and a large stage for performances. Country Lane is open 365 days starting at 7:30am for breakfast every day — we stay busy! We’re very family-oriented and look forward to hosting the camping groups that want to join in on our activities and fun.

What led you from Montana to buying a park in Idaho?

When my mom and I were managing the Vista Motel in Montana, we wanted to buy it, but the owner wouldn’t take our offer; she wanted more. Mom drove around for months looking for the right property. Finally, she found Country Lane just over the state border in Idaho and now here we are!
 

Country Lane River Resort

 

How has Campspot benefited your campground?

Campspot’s support team is accessible every day, even on Sundays. The moment I need something, Campspot is right on it. I’ve had customers comment on how quickly I could get back to them, and that’s because Campspot was so quick to get back with me.

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

That I get to wear “all the hats!” Being the owner makes wearing so many hats each day very exhausting, but it is also very rewarding and certainly never boring.

What has been the greatest challenge as a campground owner?

Knowing when the customer is wrong. Our campground used to be a party place, but we are gradually making it more family-oriented. I know you never want to lose customers, but when those few customers are disturbing our other customers, then tough calls need to be made.
 

Country Lane River Resort

 

What is the most valuable lesson or information you’ve learned since working in the hospitality industry?

To have tough skin. Since owning a bar, I’ve learned to balance each situation against both my emotions in the moment and the customer service-centered environment where our business exists. Everyone is looking to make suggestions or even ask for freebies, but as a new business, we need to stick to our guns and do what we believe is right for our resort and its future.

Tell us one of your favorite stories about your park.

In 2019, we hosted a fireworks show with all of our campers for the Fourth of July. We had people coming up to us saying that it was the best Fourth of July Country Lane ever had. We didn’t think we’d hear that about any holiday for a few years because the previous owners were well known for their parties. We were proud to host such a great show and live up to the previous owners’ legacy.
We love sharing stories from members of the Campspot Family. If you’d like us to showcase your park for free and share with the world what makes your park special, email us at marketing@campspot.com to get started!

Campground Spotlight: Triple R Camping Resort

Campground: Triple R Camping Resort
Location: Franklinville, New York
Owners: John and Jennifer Tinelli
Website: TripleRCamp.com

From Hobby to Thriving Business

The Tinelli’s raised a camping family early on by enjoying trips close to home with their three sons Mitchell, John, and Wyatt. The couple spent many years working for other people — Jennifer as a senior contract negotiator for a military contractor and John as a mechanical designer and firefighter. For years they had talked of turning their camping hobby into a family business, but never made the leap. Eventually they tired of the grind of working for someone else, uprooted their lives, and decided to make their dream come true. After checking out many parks, they found Triple R Camping Resort in eastern New York. Nestled in the foothills of the Allegheny Mountains, the amazing landscape was enough to sell them. The revenue and reputation lined up as well. John and Jennifer called with an offer even before seeing the entire park!

Once they made the move and purchased the park, the Tinellis immediately made some significant changes. Given their backgrounds in automation and manufacturing, the first thing to do away with was doing manual inventory until midnight. But there was still a big elephant in the park: It had no online booking.

“We settled for software that would get us online quickly…not taking the time, not realizing the significance, not understanding how all the moving parts of our business worked yet from the other side of the desk,” said John. After five years in business, they still couldn’t get past 21% of their reservations being made online, which was frustrating for the new park owners. Then in 2018, the two decided to visit the ARVC Outdoor Hospitality Conference & Expo where they met Campspot! “We noticed right away that the feel from the customers’ side is like no other,” said Jennifer.
 

Jennifer and John Tinelli

How has Campspot benefited your business?

“Campspot has fundamentally changed the way we do online booking. We saw an 89.6% increase in golf cart rentals in our first year alone, thanks to Campspot’s add-on feature. We also made almost $6,000 in lock fees our first year, which paid for the software,” said John. Campspot’s lock fee is an optional feature allowing campers to secure their specific, desired site while driving extra revenue for owners.

“We noticed right away that the feel from the customers’ side is like no other.”

“Most people are afraid to charge lock fees. Although we’ve had a few people refuse to book because of this feature, we’ve had thousands of other loyal customers using it. If you are on the fence about switching or think that it’s going to be painful, I can tell you it took us less than one week to be fully operational and online making money. While we struggled for five years to get past 21% of bookings made online, we’re now at just under 50% of our bookings made online — after only one year with Campspot! There is one more significant detail: their customer support. We get instant results,” said John.
 

Triple R Camping Resort

Tell us your favorite story as campground owners

“One of our favorite stories is about a family that visits every spring. They have a child who is autistic and who LOVES fans — so much so that when we installed central air in our office, we kept our old fan in storage and only brought it out when the child would come camping. He is the only child that has total access to our office! But the most touching part happened on our campground’s Halloween weekend last year. This child also LOVES Disney’s The Incredibles. Another one of our families decided that year to dress up as The Incredibles family, and they knocked it out of the park. They made this child’s dream come true that weekend by posing for pictures. Needless to say, the pictures went viral. That family’s small act had far greater significance than they first realized. Owning a campground does have rewards that go far beyond monetary.” – John and Jennifer Tinelli.

We love sharing stories from members of the Campspot Family. If you’d like us to showcase your park for free and share with the world what makes your park special, email us at  marketing@campspot.com  to get started!