LSI Names Camp-Resort of the Year
The Yogi Bear Jellystone Park at Birchwood Acres in Woodridge, N.Y., was named “Camp-Resort of the Year” for 2007 at Leisure Systems Inc.’s annual awards banquet on Nov. 1 at the Embassy Suites & NKY Convention Center in Covington, Ky.
“I am not a humble person, but I was pretty humbled by this one. I didn’t expect to get it,” owner Michael Zalkin told Woodall’s Campground Management. “I can think of half a dozen Jellystones that are more deserving.”
Zalkin runs the 269-site campground on the site of a former Catskills resort owned by his grandparents dating back to 1943. Zalkin grew up as a “hotel brat” but pursued a career in academia – earning a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Massachusetts and teaching five years at the University of Notre Dame – before returning to run the family campground business in 1990.
He joined the LSI system in 1995 and, subsequently, has received won a number of top awards, from “rookie of the year “ to “entrepreneur of the year” to “operator of the year” and taking home the Jim Webb Spirit Award in 2005.
LSI, meanwhile, honored two parks with the system’s second highest honor, Facility of the Year awards for 2007: Tabor City, N.C., Small Park of the Year (under 250 campsites), and Frankenmuth, Mich., Large Park.
Other major award winners were:
LSI honored a number of its franchisees for various aspects of their operations. They included:
LSI also recognized camp-resorts that scored high on their annual inspections and reached certain milestones with the organization. Receiving plaques for being a franchisee for at least 35 years were camp-resorts in Bagley, Wis.; Fort Atkinson, Wis.; and Caledonia, Wis.