ARVC Agenda: Highlights from the Outdoor Hospitality Conference

January 19, 2012 by   - () Comments Off on ARVC Agenda: Highlights from the Outdoor Hospitality Conference

Editor’s Note: The ARVC Agenda is prepared by industry publicist Evanne Schmarder and appears monthly in Woodall’s Campground Management.

ARVC Annual Meeting Highlights

The 2011 ARVC Membership Annual Meeting was held at the Outdoor Hospitality Conference on Dec. 1 and association leadership addressed a full house. Chairman David L. Berg, CPO, spoke about upcoming conference venues in regards to a more traditional outdoor recreation setting to great audience interest. Conference dates are also on the table with the association taking into consideration state association meeting dates as well as RVIA’s annual gathering.

Executive Committee Treasurer Patrick O’Neill, CPO, reported that the association is on solid financial ground and that there will be no increase in membership dues for 2013.

President Paul Bambei shared 2011 association accomplishments including the move to a new headquarters building in Centennial, Colo., and staffing changes that have resulted in a more seasoned, experienced team with a mandate to uphold and build upon core member values of marketing, education, and government advocacy.

A number of ARVC member benefits have been or are in the process of rolling out including the DIRECTV program administered by Just In Time Communications, ARVC’s newest Preferred Provider, Skyline Homes and the Outdoor Hospitality Education Program.

Bambei also discussed a possible flat-rate music licensing deal as well as other benefits in the pipeline, including ADP Payroll Services, a major U.S. vehicle manufacturer, Waste Management, Verizon and more. As always, these money-saving programs are offered as exclusive benefits for ARVC members.

As the association moves into the new year, ARVC is dedicated to continuing to serve members by delivering top-shelf value in every area of membership.

ARVC Foundation Fundraising a Success

Each year the ARVC Foundation, a 501c3 organization dedicated to industry research and education, hosts several fundraising events at the annual Outdoor Hospitality Conference. This year the Foundation offered the ever-popular Fundraising Challenge selling sweepstakes squares as well as a live and silent auction. Foundation supporters included Evergreen USA, KOA, Leisure Systems Inc./Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Camp-Resorts, Woodall’s, Yurts of America and many more.

A first-ever ARVC Foundation Walk for Disaster Relief brought out a number of early morning walkers that sought pledges for their participation. Top “earners” were recognized in the January post-Conference ARVC Voice.

Cyndy Zbierski was the immediate top earner and was recognized at the Awards of Excellence Gala for her excellence in fundraising for the Disaster Relief Fund.

Thanks to ongoing donations, Suzette Wight has raised the most funds overall – more than $1,000 – and is still bringing in pledges.

Overall, the 2011 Conference events raised over $85,000 to benefit the outdoor hospitality industry and its members.

Battle for Savannah Winners Announced

ARVC Outdoor Hospitality Conference attendance was up 32% over last year and that was in part due to an ARVC state association promotion called the “Battle for Savannah.” In this friendly competition, associations competed with one another to see which, in several categories, could have the largest member attendance increase over last year’s figures.

The categories included small, medium, large and non-affiliated state associations and each category winner enjoyed a 50% full registration rebate. The affiliated state association that had the largest increase overall would take home a grand prize of an additional $5,000.

The association winners were announced at the Opening Luncheon on Nov. 30, with the grand prize winner celebrated at the Awards of Excellence Gala on Friday evening.

Congratulations to the winning associations:

  • Small State Association: Maryland Association of Campgrounds (MAC) with an 800% year-over-year increase winning a 50% full registration rebate of $3,929.
  • Medium State Association: Massachusetts Association of Campground Owners (MACO) with a 200% year-over-year increase winning a 50% full registration rebate of $4,122.
  • Large State Association: Wisconsin Association of Campground Owners (WACO) with a 62% year-over-year increase winning a 50% full registration rebate of $3,325.
  • Non-Affiliated State Association: New Hampshire Campground Owners Association (NeHaCa) with a 400% year-over-year increase winning a 50% full registration rebate of $893.
  • Grand Prize: With their 800% attendance increase, Maryland Association of Campgrounds (MAC) took the $5,000 grand prize. Combined with the 50% full registration rebate of $3,929, Executive Director Debbie Carter, CPO, brought $8,929 back to her state association.

ARVC Announces Spring Seminar Series

In direct response to ARVC member feedback, the ARVC Education Department recently announced the first Spring Seminar Series.

This seminar series is designed to offer two session-packed days covering four learning tracks and is scheduled to be held in Denver May 16-17. Learning tracks include Health, Safety and Risk Management, Customer Satisfaction and Service Standards, Information Technology, Ancillary Income and Recreation. Session facilitators will be announced in the very near future.

Early-bird registration is underway and a rate of $169 per participant will be valid until March 31. Learn more or register at You may also contact Barb Youmans, ARVC senior director of membership and education at (303) 681-0401 or for further details.

Hill Day 2012 Tentatively Scheduled

ARVC has tentatively set May 8-9 as the dates for its Hill Day 2012, in which ARVC lobbyists and counsel at McDermott Will & Emery in Washington, D.C., will set up meetings with Members of Congress and staff for ARVC members. May 8 will be a preparation day.

These events, in which members of trade associations fly in to Washington to discuss matters of particular importance to them and their industry, are a staple of any government relations program. ARVC will provide more information as it becomes available regarding details of this planned Hill Day.


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