Tanglewood Park Campground to Reopen April 14
Les and Sherry Reasonover set up their RV at Tanglewood Park in Clemmons, N.C., this week.
The Reasonovers are among a dedicated group of camp hosts, people who will greet and help visitors to the park's newly renovated campgrounds, which will reopen April 14 after being closed for nearly 10 years, according to the Winston-Salem Journal.
As the Reasonovers set up shop, workers were busy putting the final touches on the campground — covering bare areas with mulch, rolling out turf and washing dirt from the new asphalt pads.
The Reasonovers arrived Monday evening from New Mexico by way of Texas. They've been living in an RV full time for about five years
"We've done camp hosting before," Les Reasonover said. "You get a free site, free utilities and a lot of time off."
Camp hosts don't get paid, but their duties are light, and when the season is over in November the Reasonovers will be traveling elsewhere. The camp hosts will help keep sites clean and watch out for problems, said Mark Serosky, the director of parks and recreation for Forsyth County.
Getting the Tanglewood campground reopened has also been a long trip.
Forsythe County commissioners cited the financial cost of repairs and other troubles — including a fatal shooting — when they closed the campground in 2000. In 1997, a sheriff's deputy shot a man who charged at him after throwing an ax at another deputy.
In 2004, an Asheboro company offered to lease the campground and renovate it.
The deal would have given the county $2.3 million over 25 years plus a percentage of the revenue, but county officials decided a year later that the campground was not a high priority and ended negotiations.
In 2006, a consultant recommended that the county renovate and reopen the campground. But it wasn't until 2007 that commissioners unanimously agreed to spend $2 million to do the work.
Serosky said that the county was able to whittle the cost down to $650,000 by not putting in a small pool and using county staff to do a lot of the work.
"I contracted the electrical, and I contracted the sewer line and water," Serosky said. "An awful lot of the work was done by our guys in house."
The campground is strictly for RVs, Serosky said. No tents will be allowed. And no fire rings are being provided at the campsites because park officials didn't want fires burning so close to neighborhoods nearby.
The campground has 44 paved sites, all with full water and sewer and 50-amp electrical service. Later, Serosky said, cable television hookups will be provided. The cost to stay will be $29 a night.
The campground is already accepting reservations. People can call 778-6370, and an online reservation system will be available soon.
The campground will be open until Nov. 15, with the season running from March 1 to Nov. 15 each year starting in 2011. The Tanglewood staff will run the campground, with help from the occupants of three park host sites.
Serosky said anyone camping at Tanglewood can get into the park without an additional fee.
"My goal is to combine (camping) with other activities," he said. "People might come from South Carolina and want to play golf. The Steeplechase is coming up, bike races — this is more than just camping at Tanglewood. It is packaging the deal with the other activities we have out there, too."
Rebecca Malina, who with her husband, Steve, serves as a camp host, said Tanglewood is "a beautiful park." She said she's looking forward to it being filled with campers.
"I like to meet people and talk with people," she said. "I like to gab."