b'BY JEFF CRIDERDemandforOutdoorRecreation,ChangesinWorking Environments Lead Developers to Expand in TexasPark owners are integrating more glamping accommodations into parks, like the canvas tents shown hereat Mystic Quarry in Canyon Lake, Texas, as they cater to campers looking for an upgraded experience.Editors note: This is part of a series of with amenities designed for full-timingarticlesthat WoodallsCampground families,saidScottFoos,CEOandManagement (WCM) is publishing on owner of Castle Rock, Colo.-based Hori-new developments across North Amer- zon Outdoor Hospitality, which man-ica. The idea is to give our readers a pic- ages RV resorts and provides consultingture of the momentum that the outdoor servicesforprivateparksacrossthehospitality industry has as it moves into country.what is expected to be a very busy sum- The pandemic has allowed familiesmer season. to travel safely in their RV for longer pe-riods of time with parents and childrenConstruction is underway in Texas to potentially all working and learning re-build new parks and expand existing motely, Foos said. We believe that thisones as the interest in RVing and camp- trend will continue as more familiesing continues to grow. shift to living full-time in their RV, mak-At least a dozen new campgrounds ing the most of todays circumstancesand RV parks with over 2,500 sites have and shifting their perspectives to livingeither just opened or are scheduled to more freely wherever they want to. Out-open this year and early next year. Ex- door hospitality properties must shift topansions are also underway at several accommodate this trend.existing parks, which plan to add over Foos said there are specific things200sitesthisyear.Oneparkisalso park operators can do to accommodateadding glamping tents and tiny house traveling families.rentals. For example, he said, weve imple-The camping industry was strong mented indoor Kids Dens with tables,goingintoCOVID.Itsjuststronger chairsandinstructionalgamesandnow, said Brian Schaeffer, executive books, better-equipped clubhouses andvicepresidentand meeting areas to accommodate familiesCEO of the Texas As- that may need more space to learn andsociationofCamp- work outside of their RV and, of course,groundOwners we are taking steps to ensure Wi-Fi is el-(TACO),adding, evated and robust to support these ac-COVIDhasdriven tivities.folks outside to RVing Park operators can also accommo-and camping. date full-time families by building largerAll of this, of course, campsites. Withnewconstruction,Brian Schaeffer is increasing demand Foos said, we feel its important to pro-for campsites in Texas and across the vide larger spaces, particularly in width.country, and its leading to the develop- As a parent, I know that my wife and ImentofnewcampgroundsandRV have a lot of stuff for our little guy, andparks, as well as to the expansion of ex- lets face it, no one wants to be right nextisting parks. to kids and all of their stuff. Full-timingTheROI(returnoninvestment) families, in particular, appreciate morefromcampgroundsisverygood room to roam and not being feet awayclearly the strongest in the tourism sec- from their neighbor.tor, Schaeffer said. New RV park development in Texas isThepandemichasalsomade also being driven by the rising cost oftelecommuters realize that they dont housing and by the growing numbers ofnecessarily have to stay home if they consumers who are full-time RVing orstay at campgrounds, RV parks and re- taking extended RV trips while they fig-sorts with Wi-Fi. ure out where they want to live. TheWFH, work from home, also means housing markets have gone nuts andWFRV, work from RV, and there are lots many folks are choosing RVs on an in-of folks working on the road, Schaeffer terim basis until they figure out theirsaid. housing situations, Schaeffer said.In fact, so many families are either As a result, many new RV parks arefull-time RVing or taking extended RV alsobeingdevelopedinTexaswithtrips with their children that park oper- these folks in mind.ators are now developing new RV parks Ofcourse,therearealsogrowingWOODALLSCM.com May 2021-29'