CONY's 50th Annual Expo Convening Oct. 31

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September 11, 2013 by   - () Leave a Comment

The Kaatskill Mountain Club in Hunter, N.Y., , site of CONY's 50th anniversary celebration Oct. 31-Nov. 2.

Campground Owners of New York (CONY) is celebrating 50 years as a trade association at annual Exposition for the Outdoor Hospitality Industry, set for Oct. 31 to Nov. 2  at the Kaatskill Mountain Club, Hunter, N.Y.

Current CONY members, prospective members, associate members, friends, family, former members, industry colleagues are welcome to attend the full Exposition or the anniversary dinner on Nov. 1, according to a news release.

CONY was established by a handful of campground owners in 1963, and has since grown to be an association that includes over 200 campgrounds and is dedicated to the promotion, growth, improvement, and development of privately owned campgrounds in New York State.

Rosemary Curtis, manager of Hickory Hill Family Camping Resort, CONY Region 3 director, and Exposition committee chairperson, is putting out the welcome for attendees. “I would personally like to invite each and every one of you to the 50th anniversary celebration event of Campground Owners of New York.  This year’s Exposition for the Outdoor Hospitality Industry and Trade Show will be an event to remember by bringing together and reminiscing with old friends or providing the chance to meet new campground owner friends at any number of our events that we have planned.  I am very excited to be able to help plan this milestone event and look forward to celebrating with all of you.”

Informative seminars and special presentations will comprise the professional development and educational component of the Exposition. A sampling of topics and speakers include:

  • Keynote Address by professional speaker Norm Bossio of Norm Bossio Enterprises.
  • Campground Activities, with Lori Severson, owner of Severson & Associates and executive director of the Wisconsin Association of Campground Owners (WACO).
  • CONY 101 – Everything you need to know about interacting with CONY and getting the most out of your membership, with Mike Papp, CONY chairman, and Donald Bennett Jr., CONY president and CEO.
  • Insurance and Risk Management, with Irene Jones and Anne Backlund of Marshall & Sterling Insurance.
  • PR is the Key to the Success of Your Campground, with Greg Taylor of KOA.
  • Your Health is Your Business – Tips to Keep You and Your Campground Healthy, with Sue Glenny, R.N.

CONY President and CEO Donald Bennett Jr. says he is always pleased with the Exposition’s diverse slate of dynamic seminars and vibrant trade show, but the networking moments are what he’s most looking forward to in this special this year. “My grandparents were charter members of CONY, and I’ve practically grown up with the association as a member, then as a board director and treasurer, and now as president and CEO. Seeing as many people as possible that I’ve come to know over the years will be the highlight of my Exposition experience, and something I hope many others are looking forward to as well.”

The Exposition will kick off Oct. 31 with several seminars and a murder mystery dinner theater. Attendees bringing their families are encouraged to sign their children up for the “CONY Kids Club,” for full days of safe supervised fun for the kids starting Thursday with a Kids Club Halloween Party.

Friday, Nov. 1,will feature more seminars, an awards luncheon with sponsor introductions and a keynote address by Norm Bossio. The Exposition trade show will take place in the afternoon, and wine tasting, dinner and auction will take place in the evening.

The agenda for Saturday, Nov. 2, will include a morning trade show, lunch, an afternoon panel discussion and round table event, and the annual business meeting for CONY members. The evening festivities will kick off with the Chairman’s reception, followed by the anniversary dinner (semi-formal), and installation of CONY officers.  The dinner will include a retrospective of CONY’s progression through the years with several special guests.

Camp Good Days to Get CONY Boost

Also during the anniversary dinner, CONY will announce the amount of proceeds raised from its second season of fundraising for Camp Good Days and Special Times, a New York State-based organization providing camping experiences to children with cancer. In 2012, CONY raised over $43,000 in donations and is hoping to reach a goal of $50,000 this year as part of an informal “$50 in 50” fundraising push in 2013 ($50,000 in CONY’s 50th anniversary year).

The trade show on Nov. 1-2 welcomes industry suppliers for insurance, retail products, graphic design, campground equipment and products, merchant services, and more. Companies interested in doing business with New York campground operators are encouraged to register as exhibitors and/or sponsors.

For more details, including schedule, attendee/exhibitor registration forms, and an Exposition information booklet, contact the CONY office at 585-586-4360, or

Campground Owners of New York, founded in 1963, is an association dedicated to the promotion, growth, improvement and development of privately owned campgrounds in New York State. More information about the association and its campgrounds – including a free camping directory – is available at and


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