City Updates Campground to Serve Growing Clientele
Recreational vehicle campers will find a few changes in place when they roll into Maryville's Mozingo Lake Park in Maryville, Mo., this year.
New regulations recently approved by the Maryville City Council have quadrupled the number of reservable RV sites and implemented a new fee structure, the Maryville Daily Forum reported.
In addition, park manager Grant Evans said Tuesday (April 3), at least 13 of 20 new RV sites designed for horseback enthusiasts on the west side of the lake should be available by July. The new sites are located near a bathhouse and equestrian trail.
The new reservation system is the most noticeable change for most campers and ups the number of reservable sites from five to 20. The sites, numbers 76 through 95, are all located in the northernmost RV area on the east side of the lake, which means that the other site a couple of hundred yards to the south is now completely first-come, first-served.
Cost for a reserved site is $30 a day during the peak camping season, which began April 1 and continues through the end of November. The non-peak fee is $25. First-come, first-served camping costs $20 a day during the peak months and $18 in the off-season.
Camping fees have increased $5 for the 2012 season, and Evans said he hopes to use the additional revenue to upgrade electrical outlets at several aging campsites from 30 to 50 amps.
The changes were enacted by the council just in time to meet the rush for what has turned into a sudden start to the outdoor recreation season caused by the arrival of spring temperatures about a month early.
Evans said last weekend's nearly perfect weather drew about 60 RVers to Mozingo, filling almost two-thirds of the available campsites.
The park director, who is beginning his first year on the job, said he expects camper traffic to increase significantly in the coming weeks since historically Mozingo's RV sites remain filled to capacity from the end of school through Labor Day.
Mozingo's growing popularity as a regional recreation destination is one of the main reasons the city decided to revamp the reserved-camping layout.
Evans said he attended RV and and boat shows over the winter in Kansas City; Omaha, Neb.; Des Moines, Iowa; and Topeka, Kan., where he spoke to Mozingo campers from those areas who wanted more assurance that sites would be available when they arrived for a stay at the 1,000-acre lake.
Creating an additional 15 sites — and putting them all in one spot where they can be properly signed and managed — should go a long way toward meeting the needs of out-of-town vacationers, Evans said.
Also new at Mozingo this season will be a campsite host program similar to that used in Missouri's state parks. Hosts are RVers who receive a free campsite in exchange for welcoming paying campers and making sure they are aware of park fees and regulations.
Details are still being worked out, but Evans said hosts will likely help make sure that reserve sites are properly tagged and handle other courtesy duties now carried out by park staff.
"They should have a good sense of who is coming, who is going and who has paid," he said.
In addition to camping at Mozingo for free, hosts will receive free firewood, $100 in travel expenses and a weekly round of golf.