b'BY BEN QUIGGLEFrom inflatables, splash pads and more, water recreation is about providingopportunities for campers to both have fun and cool down. Photo credit: CRSSuppliers See Spike in Demand for Water Recreationas Water-Based Park Amenities Rise in PopularityM That is beginning to put pressure on suppliers of park andany northern-tier park owners are currently coping with snowyconditions and cold winter temperatures, but summer is on thehorizon and that means campers are going to be looking for op-portunities to cool down. recreation products as well, as more park owners look to addamenities that will keep campers coming back. More park owners are finding ways to incorporate a water-based amenityoreven multiple amenitiesdue the increasing popularity of such items amongcampers at parks throughout the country.While large waterslides and other water features catch the eye, smaller parks arealso incorporating more water-based activities by offering swimming pools, splashpads, boat rentals and more. Most of the water recreation product suppliers Woodalls Campground Manage-ment(WCM) spoke with said that they had a busy 2020 and are anticipating an evenbusier 2021 amid growing demand for more outdoor recreation. Amid the pandemic, campgrounds were booming and that has helped us aswell, said Holly DeCaro, sales and marketing director for Norwalk, Ohio-basedEmerald FX, which sells splash pads and splash parks. Splash parks have beengrowing in popularity for a number of years now and while we do a lot of work withfranchised parks, privately-owned parks are also big players and are becoming moreof a factor. At Verona, Wis.-based Commercial Recreation Specialists (CRS), Ron Romens,founder and president of the company, said that they have been seeing a tremen-dous amount of interest in the aquatic products it sells. In the campground and RV park sectors, the trend is moving toward leveragingopen waterfront recreation areas and building out beaches with enough seating,rental cabanas, chairs and umbrellas, he noted. We are also seeing campgroundowners install shallow zones, like sunken ditches, to create shallow water play areasand separate deep-water zones for the larger equipment pieces. Owners are alsousing those portions of their parks as day-use areas during the week.WCMspoke with a variety of water recreation equipment providers, and below ismore information on what they provide to the RV park and campground sectors. Commercial Recreation SpecialistFeaturing colorful components, CRS offers inflatable water obstacles that includeslides, bounce pads, climbing walls and more. Each component is constructed ofdurable materials and built to withstand the test of time, according to Romens,whose brand names include Aquaglide, Rave Sportsand Wibit.CRS also sells splash pad units, which Romens said some campground ownersWater Recreationcontinued on page 18WOODALLSCM.com March 2021-17'