(March 15, 2018) -- This week’s guest is Shelley Fugitt, one of the relatively new owners of the KOA campground near Carlsbad, N.M. She and her husband, James, bought the facility last year and manage it year-round with their three children. Fugitt explains why they decided to get out of pediatric oncology – or treating kids with cancer – and get into the campground industry instead. She explains why they settled on acquiring a KOA franchise versus a privately-owned campground. She also talks about what she learned at KOA University that has helped her prepare for the challenges she faced as new business owners who were brand new to the outdoor hospitality industry.
(March 1, 2018) -- This week’s guest is Anthony Tedesco, who works for Show Managers LLC, a company located in Richmond, Va. He and his partner have almost 40 years of combined experience planning, organizing and promoting shows of all types, including RV shows. Tedesco describes the elements of a good RV show and explain what RV dealers and consumers can do to get the most of their RV show experience. He also talks about the upcoming Mid-Atlantic RV Show March 16 to 18 in Richmond, Va.
(Feb. 22, 2018) -- This week’s guest is Josh Taxler, the chief operating officer of Campspot. The software goes beyond reservations management and online booking. It allows people to tack add-on services to their reservations, like golf carts, bikes, tickets and even food. Owners can also price each site individually based on location or amenities, with a price that fluctuates based on promotions, the season, demand or special events.
(Feb. 15, 2018) -- This week’s guest is Laurie Leonard, who runs a start-up company in San Diego, Calif., to help pet owners who travel. She is the founder of MyPetRecordsOnline.com, a service that stores a pet’s medical records, including vaccination history, online so they can be accessed by another vet in an emergency situation, or even a campground looking to verify a current rabies shot. Leonard offers a variety of plans to accommodate any pet owner and is even willing to create a custom plan to meet unusual needs.
(Feb. 8, 2018) -- This week’s guest is Phil Ingrassia, the president of the RV Dealers Association, who is promoting RVDA’s Annual Professional Certification Week that takes place this year from March 11 to 17. Ingrassia describes each of the areas where RVDA has developed professional certification. Right now it is limited to technicians and people working in fixed operations, such as parts management, warranty administration and service advisors.
(Jan. 25, 2018) -- This week’s guest is Bert Alanko, president of MBA Insurance. The company specializes in offering rental insurance to RV dealers and private RV renters. The 2018 Rental School takes place Feb. 20 to 22 at the Tuscany Hotel in Las Vegas. The event has been a sellout every year for many years. Alanko explains why he started the rental school and describes some of the training that dealers and rental managers can expect out of the three-day classes. He also describes the instructors who provide the training and the companies who participate by offering products and services to streamline the rental operation.
(Jan. 22, 2018) -- It’s not just members of the millennial generation who see RV as vehicles for active adventure; people of all ages are using their motorhomes and towables as base camps from which to launch dozens of things to do.
(Jan. 17, 2018) -- This week’s guest is Herb Gingold, the founder of RV Intelligence Products, a firm based in Longwood, Fla. He has developed a series of products, from simple to high-tech, designed to make the lives of RV owners easier. It might be as simple as a hitch pin leash to prevent people from losing the pins to the towbars, or a complex device that allows people to use a smartphone app to control their jacks, awnings, slideouts, cord reels and just about anything in an RV that has a motor.
(Jan. 11, 2018) -- Charles Campbell is a senior instructor at the U.S. Compliance Academy, a company that helps dealership clients use online training and information sharing to navigate the alphabet soup of federal government agencies, and the regulations they enforce. The group offers a variety of live and online training courses to help dealers comply with requirements of the Dodd-Frank Act, Military Lending Act, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Federal Trade Commission and others. The firm also helps dealers develop policy manuals and walk the tightrope of sexual harassment rules.
(Dec. 18, 2017) -- This week’s guest is Terry Cooper, who is the new owner of RV Daily Report, but also the co-founder of the new National RV Training Academy. Cooper explains the goals and mission of the National RV Training Academy, describes its non-profit status, and outlines ways the RV industry can support the effort to train hundreds of technicians a year from its compound at a campground 90 minutes from Dallas. He also describes the hands-on training programs modeled after military tech courses.