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PCOA Draws Over 200 To Annual Convention

At the trade show, Kristen Strub and John Nuzzolo, of Dogwood Acres Campground, talk to Scott Murphy from PlayGo Company.

The 2018 Pennsylvania Campground Owners Association (PCOA) Convention was held at the Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel in State College, Pa., from Dec. 2-5, with the theme “Let’s Roll to Achieve Your Goals,” according to a press release.

More than 200 attendees from 88 registered campgrounds, which included 6 from out of state, were in attendance.

New to the mix this year was the addition of the Pennsylvania Recreation Vehicle and Campground Association (PRVCA), located in Camp Hill, Pa., PRVCA officials held both their winter board meeting and their show committee meeting during the convention and were present for the keynote address as well as the trade show.

Cooperation between PCOA and PRVCA strengthens Pennsylvania’s presence in the industry, according to the release.

The keynote speaker was Kampgrounds of America Inc. (KOA) President Toby O’Rourke, who spoke about the forward momentum in the campground industry. She shared some statistics and trends that show camping is growing across all demographics.

Fourteen seminars were held during the convention, including:

    • Are Your Books Ready for a Loan? by Amy Wirtz
    • Creative and Influencer Marketing by Annie Lewis
    • Why Your Press Release Got Trashed – Media Relations 101 by Mike Lysakowski
    • HR 101 – Employment Practices by Karen Anesi
    • Being the Captain of Your Own Success Plan by Amy Wirtz
    • Removing Undesirables from Your Campground by Karen Anesi
    • Utilizing Google Analytics by Brian Searle
    • How’s Your Mix? Social/Print/Broadcast by Michael Moore
    • Handling Complaints in Your Campground by Jacob Hagofsky
    • Have You Thought About Your Cyber Vulnerability by Fred Reck
    • Developing Seasonal Agreements & Enforcing the Rules – A Panel of Campground Managers – Shannon Halbleib, Hersheypark RV Resort; Karl Schmidt; Elizabethtown/Hershey KOA; Jason Vaughan, Mountain Vista Campground; and Jacob Kesterke, Otter Lake Camp-Resort
    • Planting and Maintaining Trees & Shrubs in Your Campground by James Sellmer
    • Boosting Your Family Business by Matt May
    • Eradicating Bed Bugs by Nina Jenkins

The convention also included 12 round tables and trade show that featured more than 70 vendors.

An auction was held that raised funds for educational endeavors, including the National School of RV Park and Campground Management, which is hosted by the National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds. Vendors and campground owners raised a total of $20,949 during the auction.

Board members (L to R) Jacob Hagofsky, Buttercup Woodlands Campground, Renfrew, Penn., Tyler Grim, Canyon Country Campground, Wellsboro, Penn., and Stephanie Schmidt, Elizabethtown/Hershey KOA, Elizabethtown, Penn., are all also members of ARVC’s Young Professionals group.

During PCOA’s annual meeting, which was held during the convention, the winners of the 2018 PCOA scholarships were announced. Doug Garman, of Pettecote Junction Campground in Cedar Run, Penn., and Laura Holmes, of Farma Family Campground in Greenville, Penn., were awarded a full scholarship to the National School of RV Park and Campground Management in Myrtle Beach, S.C.

Craig Repetski Jr., of Hemlock Campground in Tobyhanna, Penn., was awarded up to $1,000 for a college or university course and Jacob Hagofsky, of Buttercup Woodlands Campground in Renfrew, Penn., was awarded up to $500 for continuing education.

Also during the annual meeting the following members were elected to two year terms on the PCOA Board:

  • Region I – Jacob Hagofsky, Buttercup Woodlands Campground, Renfrew, Penn.
  • Region II – Ron Thompson, Silver Canoe Campground, Rural Valley, Penn.
  • Region III – Tyler Grim, Canyon Country Campground, Wellsboro, Penn.
  • Region IV – Bruce Serio, Mountain Creek Campground, Gardners, Penn.
  • Region V – Jonathan Ammary, StonyBrook RV Resort, Lehighton, Penn.
  • Region VI – Stephanie Schmidt, Elizabethtown/Hershey KOA, Elizabethtown, Penn.

PCOA handed out a number of campground awards during the conference, including:

  • Best Promotional Piece – Dogwood Acres Campground, Newville, Penn.
  • Best Brochure – Rose Point Park Cabins & Cottages, New Castle, Penn.
  • Best Apparel Item – Blue Rocks Family Campground, Lenhartsville, Penn.
  • Best Souvenir – Bear Run Campground, Portersville, Penn.
  • Best Camping Photo – Keen Lake Camping & Cottages, Waymart, Penn.
  • Most Creative Activity – Foxwood Family Campground, East Stroudsburg, Penn.
  • Best Website – Pettecote Junction Campground, Cedar Run, Penn.
  • Best Example of Guest Service – Paradise Stream Campground, Loysville, Penn.
  • Tourism Employee of the Year – Keen Lake Camping & Cottages, Waymart, Penn.
  • Best Community Involvement – Bear Run Campground, Portersville, Penn.

The 2019 PCOA Convention will be held from Dec. 9-11 at the Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel in State College, Pa.,

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