b'Wildfires Stall Busy Summer for Private RV Parks and Campgrounds in Calif.While dealing with the impact of the ongoing pan-demic, some Western states are fighting another crisis: Wildfires in California, like the LNU Lightning Complex Firestrying to contain massive wildfires that have devastated shown above, have burned millions of acres in 2020 andthe region due to dry, hot and windy conditions. forced thousands to evacuate. Photo credit: Trevor BexonFor private RV parks and camp-grounds, wildfires have meant thehalt of what had been a very busysummer after a late start to the sea-son due to the COVID-19 crisis, ac-cording to Dyana Kelley, presidentand CEO of the CampCalNOW RVPark and Campground Alliance(CampCalNOW).She told Woodalls CampgroundDyana Kelley Management(WCM) that the clo-sure of national parks and forest service areas has limitedthe recreational activities that many can take part in andtheimpactofsmokeandwildfireshasscaredawaycampers in some areas.Campers are not wanting to go camping, Kelley ex-plained. Just when we were having the summer of ourlife, all of a sudden some of that has come to a screechinghalt in a lot of areas. Thats been challenging. And then the sun. We have sensor lights that come on for our build- California has been getting hammered year after yearbecause theyre being very, very cautious, especially after ing here in Auburn, Calif., and one day they came on at 3 by wildfires here recently and Kelley said there are multi-the Mammoth Pool situation where all those people were p.m. because it was so dark from the smoke and were not ple factors at work.trapped, theyre actually evacuating areas, maybe more even in the thick of it, Im sure there are other places that This is the worst season yet, she noted to WCM. Itsas a precaution than a necessity. Were finding that there are much worse than what we have now. not just managing the forest; the forests would actuallyare areas that are now being evacuated just purely as a Kelley said she has been on the phone quite a bit here manage themselves if we allowed them to. There are justprecaution. recently trying to get updates from member parks on how so many things involved with this and we could polarize itCommunities are prepping early, so that has been a the wildfires have impacted them. She noted that Little by saying its just climate change or its just forest manage-struggle for some, and of course the smoke is everywhere Basin Campground, a state-run park, was destroyed by ment, but I think that is really irresponsible. I think there isand so people are not wanting to go out and do anything a wildfire. Camp Okizu, a beloved camp in Butte County, a lot more to it than that and before they actually try to mit-outside, she continued. It is not healthy to be outside, Calif., supported by Care Campsfor children affected by igate the problem theres going to have to be a bigger con-and so that is an issue for park owners as well. cancer, was destroyed in the North Complex fire. versation and people are going to have to be able to setRecent maps of smoke travel patterns from AirNow Three member parks that were closest to the Santa their opinions down and really look for a comprehensiveshows that smoke from the multiple wildfires in Califor- Cruz fire all survived, she noted. A member park in Wis- solution.nia has covered almost the entire state, Oregon, Washing- hon Village is horribly close to getting destroyed. I think People think, Okay well if you just get some moreton and is heading East, with CNN reporting that New everybody up in Mendocino has been okay, fires up there water on there, if you just get more firefighters, you canYorks air quality is being impacted by wildfire smoke. have mostly burned forest service area. I dont think weve put it out. And honestly, when youre working with a for-Day after day the sky looks like it is going to rain, lost any of our member parks yet, but theyre still very, est fire, it doesnt really work like that, Kelley added.noted Kelley. There are no shadows on the ground from very close. Ben Quiggle WCMMarshall & Sterling Offering Coverage Many Jellystone Parks See Double-Digit Reservation Increasesfor Violent Events at Campgrounds Same-park reservations at Yogi Bears Jellystone Park Camp-Resortsfranchises are up 11% over 2019, despite many campgrounds not fully op-Editors note: This story was written by Irene Jones, vately with the families of the de- erating until June. Families visiting a Jellystone Park for the first time, asan associate in risk management and program manager ceasedandpubliclywiththe well as investments owners are making in their campgrounds, are drivingfor Marshall & Sterling Campground Insurance, the ex- media.It pays for extra expenses much of the record growth, according to a press release.clusive distributor of Campground Commercial Package such as counseling for campers Jellystone Park is owned by Milford, Ohio-basedLeisure Systems Inc.policies for Great American Insurance Company. and staff and increased tempo- (LSI), which franchises more than 75 Jellystone Parks throughout NorthThis aint over, nobodys safe. These were the words rary security onsite. It allows the America.of a disgruntled boyfriend just before he shot two men at park owner to bring in a crisis This years reservations increase, which includes bookings througha Bucks County, Pa., campground in 2019, according to management or public relations fall, follows 12 years of continuous system sales growth, noted the re-Lehigh Valley Live. A violent event like this is tragic and firmtohandlethemediaand lease.traumaticandsomethingeverycampgroundowner communications. The coverage The floodgates opened once states began reopening, and we arewants to avoid. If you cant avoid it, now you can cover it. affords the park leadership the Irene Jones preparing for what we expect will be a record fall, as many parks are re-Great American Insurance Companys Campground support of a team of professionals to help rebuild the porting weekend reservations up double-digits or more over last year,Insurance policy, distributed exclusively through Mar- well-being of the people affected by the tragedy and the said Rob Schutter, CEO of LSI. Likewise, were seeing a big uptick in fran-shall & Sterling, is now offering a special endorsement reputation of the business. chise inquiries, especially from real estate investors and developers.to cover violent events. It covers use of deadly force Before you can reopen and return to normal, you Schutter noted there has been an influx of first time Jellystone Parkcausing bodily injurylike the incident above where two need to pick up the pieces. Expenses to clean and disin- campers. Along with an increase in bookings, merchandise and activitiesmen were shot to death. The weapon involved can be a fect biohazard areas are covered. Outsourcing biohazard sales are up substantially, explained the release.gun, knife, in fact anythingas long as deadly force is cleanup to specialists spares you and your staff the Families are sticking closer to home, and theyre staying on-site moreinvolved. added trauma of handling the crime scene. Policyholders because they feel safe there, he said. The dollars they would have spentThe endorsement also covers violent events that can even offer to pay for funeral expenses of deceased on more expensive trips and off-site activities are being used to pay forthreaten the use of deadly force to cause bodily injury. victims, up to $10,000, to comfort the families. souvenirs, toys, supplies and equipment rentals, such as golf carts.So, if a disturbed camper fires shots at other people and If you are shut down due to a violent event, Business Jellystone Parks overall 2020 performance also is benefiting from themisses, it is still considered a violent event. And holding Income coverage pays for lost net income that would have addition of three new parks, as well as franchisees investing in major ex-or threatening to hold a person hostage is also covered been earned if the violent event had not taken place and pansions and other enhancements.as a violent event. All of these situations leave an after- allows for you to pay continuing expenses and payroll. Northgate Resortsadded two New Hampshire Jellystone Park loca-math of trauma. This coverage provides remedies to This coverage is not a stand-alone policy; it is a rider tions to its portfolio, which now includes 11 branded campgrounds. Realcope, regroup, mourn and, eventually, to move on. or endorsement to the Great American Insurance Com- estate investment firm RER Ventures joined the Jellystone Park systemViolent events can occur for many reasons; domestic mercial Package policy covering General Liability and this year with its acquisition and conversion of an independent camp-problems; in the event of a crime or as part of a random Property insurance for parks. Note that policyholders ground in North Port Huron, Mich.act of violence. One thing is for surecurrent stressors should always look at their specific policy and coverage Sun Communities Inc. this year completed a multi-million-dollar ex-have maxed out the mental health of many people, leav- forms to determine coverage. The endorsement format pansion of its park near Denver. Longtime local owners recently finisheding them vulnerable to lash out. is designed to make Violent Event coverage accessible expanding parks located near Milwaukee, and between Louisville, Ky. andIn the unfortunate event that a violent incident occurs, and affordable. Most of all, Great Americans Violent Nashville, Tenn. Other owners have added premium lodging options, ac-this specialty coverage is designed to help park owners Event coverage provides security and peace of mind dur- tivities and amenities, noted the release.put things back togetheremotionally, financially, pri- ing uncertain times. WCM Were increasingly seeing experienced real estate and hospitalitycompanies acquiring parks and investing in them, Schutter added.WCMWOODALLSCM.com November 2020-3'