CCLOA Holds Annual Spring Convention
The Colorado Campground and Lodging Owners’ Association (CCLOA) is optimistic about the upcoming summer season despite rising gas prices and a struggling economy. At the association’s recent convention and trade show April 5-8, attendance was down, but the mood was up, according to Dana Foran, CCLOA administrator.
Twenty-seven campground owners from 13 different parks plus 13 vendors took part in the conference at the Holiday Inn Express in Montrose.
“The board of directors was a little disappointed at the lower than usual attendance,” Foran said. “However, by the conclusion we had signed up two new members and three new associate members which was very encouraging. The convention itself was very upbeat with great sessions and speakers, a fun banquet with good entertainment, a great auction result and lots of good discussion. Campers seem to be coming from shorter distances. A lot of Coloradoans are camping in Colorado – staying closer to home and staying longer which is good.”
Foran said from what she is hearing, reservations are down slightly or on par with last season.
In legislative news, the membership voted to the stand with the Tourism Industry Association of Colorado (TIAC) and oppose the proposed SB11-022 legislation sponsored by Sen. Greg Brophy, R-Colo., to move Colorado permanently to year-round daylight savings time (DST). Foran said the CCLOA board and membership agreed with TIAC that if passed, the following “unintended consequences” could have an impact on the tourism industry:
- Colorado would be out of sync with the rest of the United States for four months of the year.
- For much of December and January, Aspen’s (and other cities around the state) actual sunrise would arrive as late as 8:27 a.m.
- If Colorado recognized DST year-round, the Rocky Mountain state would effectively be temporarily moved to the Central Time zone during the winter, the same as western Florida.
- It seems that potential impacts to the commercial airlines that connect Colorado with other states, which would be substantial, have yet to be considered.
- One near-certain airline impact locally are imminent conflicts between the schedule adjustments the airlines would be forced to make and the existing airport curfew at ASE.
- Other potential local impacts could include necessary adjustments to school schedules, ski area operating hours and bus schedules, as well likely adjustments to operating hours for just about every business in the state.
The three 2011 key initiatives for CCLOA involve member development, Colorado camping promotion and tourism industry relations.
Conference seminars included:
- ARVC Strategy Reset; Supporting Our Members, by Barb Youmans, National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (ARVC) senior director or administration and education.
- Where and How Much to Spend on Marketing, Barb Youmans.
- Smart Phones and Marketing Your Business in the Mobile World, Bryan Jordan, president of VistaWorks.
- Optimizing Your Convenience Store for Maximum Profitability by Janine Roberts, vice president sales and marketing for Travado.
- Colorado Tourism Office, How it Benefits Us, by Sen. Al White, Colorado Tourism Office (CTO) director.
- Rural Development Business Resources, Pattie Snidow, U.S.D.A. Northwest area director of rural development.
- Where are We and Where are We Going by Jeff Sims, ARVC director of membership and government affairs.
- Recycling Energy by William Weideman, Peak Energy Technology.
- Geo Thermal Energy, Delta/Montrose Electric Association.
- Cutting Edge Solar Energy, Bright Leaf Solar Co.
“All of the sessions and speakers were exceptional,” Foran said. “However, I would have to say that getting Sen. Al White, R-Colo., new director of the Colorado Tourism Office, to speak on Colorado tourism and how it benefits the camping/RVing industry, was pretty big.”
Foran said the CCLOA has developed a good relationship with both the CTO and the TIAC, which has basically been the legislative branch of the CTO over the past few years.
“Ian Steyn, owner of the Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park in Larkspur, and a CCLOA board member, also sits on the board of directors of the CTO and TIAC as well as another coalition called Colorado Kids Outdoors,” Foran noted. “CCLOA is active at the state level and works hard for her members.”
During the event Stan and Pat Stehwien, CCLOA board members and owners of the Gunnison Lakeside Resort in Gunnison, were honored for their many years of dedicated service to the association. Dana Foran was also honored for eight years of service to CCLOA.
“It was nice to be publicly recognized after these many years of working for the CCLOA,” Foran said.
Board elections included: President Tom and Mari Garland, Junction West RV Park, Grand Junction; Vice President, Ian and Sally Steyn, Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park at Larkspur; and Secretary/Treasurer Stan and Pat Stehwien, Gunnison Lakeside Resort, Gunnison.
Next year’s CCLOA conference will be held sometime in March, exact dates and location to be determined.