b"INDUSTRY NEWS Conference Sessionsfrom page 18mid-March.NCAfrom page 3 dors took part in the expo, including sixWACOfrom page 3 He kicked off the session by explaining that first-time participants.park owners should have systems in place so Cyndy Zbierski, NCAs executive di- The conferences auction raised overation welcomed over 330 people andthat they know who is entering their park when rector, noted that representatives from$15,000, which Zbierski told WCM helps192 vendors in 2022. it comes to delivery drivers, emergency person-more than 52 campgrounds were regis- to fund the association and its conference.Although the final figures werent avail- nel and more.tered to take part in the conference, andOn the association side, Zbierski saidable when this issue of WCM headed toI allow them to go the wrong way in be-more were showing up throughout thethatthestateassociationsthatarethe press, Severson said more than 400cause it is straight in and out at my park, he annual conference as well.members of NCA have reported thatpeoplerepresenting over 125 parks noted. I also try to warn them that there are a The conference was very upbeat,member numbers are remaining steady.had pre-registered for the event. Morelot of kids at the park. sheexplained. SomeyearsyouhearShe said that corporate owners comingthan 160 vendors also took part this year. Button touched on the importance of having park owners talking a lot about chal- into the space are a challenge, but thatAs with any state association conven- plans in place if severe weather hits or if there lenges and how to face them, but thisthe association is working to engagetion, education and networking was theis an active shooter event.year they were all generally focused onwith local managers and operators.main theme of this years WACO show,I'll be honest with you, it scares the Jesus taking the next step. They were talking toWe need to have that contact infor- with Severson hosting more than threeout of me, he explained. That is the worst each other and listening about how tomation for that person on site so we candozen educational sessions over a four- thing that could happen. We are very vulnerable keep getting better, not necessarily howhelp him or her with whats going on inday period. to that. I called my sherriff several years ago to solve problems. I am very happy thatthat state, whatever it might be, legisla- One highlight was a session on zon- and he told me not to worry about it, that they they are keeping an open mind and thattively, marketing and then respecting theing and planning. would be there. But what happens in the four they are coming to this conference look- corporate voice as well, she explained.A lunch panel was also held that in- to five minutes between when the event starts ing for ways to make their parks better.BelowisacompletelistofNCAscluded Mark OConnell, from the Wis- and when they arrive? Iknowthelasttwoseasonsex- board members: consin Counties Association; AndrewOne of the things parks can do is not hausted them with staff shortages and Marcia Galvin, Normandy FarmsNussbaum from the Wisconsin Depart- allow guns, but that is not going to stop a everything else that has been occurringCampground, Mass., presidentment of Tourism; Mike Ochs, from theperson from bringing in that gun, Button across the country, Zbierski added.KenManning,AbelMountainRVIndustryAssociation;JamesKa- added. We can't sit here and check every MarciaGalvin,co-ownerofNor- Campground, Vt., vice presidentplanek from the Wisconsin DATCP; andcar. Plus, you don't know what's under the mandy Farms Family Campground in Rae Asselin, Brialee Campground,Adam Payne from the Wisconsin DNR,seat. So, the biggest thing that we can do is which focused on how state agenciesbe prepared. Foxboro, Mass., was voted in as the newConn., 2nd vice presidentare working together to help parks.One attendee noted that Marshall and Ster-president of NCA during the conference, Kitty Winship, Papoose Pond Fam- Other educational sessions ran theling Insurance offers an active shooter guide and educational sessions remained filledilyCampground&Cabins,Maine,gamut when it came to topics, fromso that park owners have steps on how to pre-throughout the three-day event. Zbierskitreasurerwater safety, Quickbooks, marketing,pare for an active shooter event. Button also tried some new things this year, like Idea Mike Irons, Ole Mink Farm Recre- park expansions, PR and more.Bennoted that National ARVC has templates that Exchanges on food service and activi- ation Resort, Md.Quiggle WCM can help park owners create plans as well.ties.StateRepresentative:FrankDe- Another attendee said that National ARVC 20 The conference also hosted numer- Masi, Calef Lake Campground, N.H.Michiganfrom page 3 groups are also a great way to understand how ous cracker barrels, which allowed parkThe NCA scholarship fund also votedother park owners prepare for emergencies.owners to discuss and trade ideas onon new members. Board members in- lobbyist,ScottEverett,thatdemon- Button also touched on AEDs and how more different topics.clude: strated some of the challenges the asso- parks need to invest in having the lifesaving This whole conference is based on Mike Irons, Ole Mink Farm Recre- ciation faces as it deals with a legislatureunits at their parks.enabling park owners/operators to haveation Resort, Md., presidentthat flipped from Republican controlledYou need to talk with your local EMS and conversations, she said. Peter Brown, Lone Oak Campsites,to a Democrat majority. explore all of the grant opportunities out there, Zbierski said that another highlight ofConn, vice presidentCamp Michigan is currently workingButton explained. There are grants out there the conference was all of the new ownersBillieMcNamara,LoonsHavenon getting a park liability bill passedthat will pay for you to have one. They want you and vendors that took part this year.Campground, Maine, secretarythrough the statehouse that would pro- to have one. They have come down in price and Many of NCAs member parks areKenManning,AbelMountaintect park owners from frivolous law- I have them spread throughout my park. now bringing more of their staff, sheCampground, Vt., treasurer suits, among other things. Another area that was touched on included noted.Theyfoundvalueinit,andDonnaGingras,SuttonFallsAn auction was held on the eveningthe importance of offering a storm shelter to weve tried to diversify our program soCamping Area, Mass. of March 20 to help support the associ- campers should severe weather hit.that it fits everyone. The representative of NeHaCa will beations legislative efforts and the associ-On the expo side, more than 50 ven- announced soon.Ben Quiggle WCM ation itself.Ben Quiggle WCM Something is better than nothing, Button said.He also highlighted that while you can spend money on a large storm shelter, it is important just to have something because people in se-vere storm situations arent going to be worried about the amount of space the shelter has. They just want to remain safe.You can spend thousands of dollars on a storm shelter or just have a small basement with some stairs, Button explained. WCMCALENDAR OF EVENTSAPRIL 25-26: Texas Association ofCampground Owners (TACO) Spring Conference Lone Star Convention & ExpoCenter Conroe, Texas Contact: 877-518-1989MAY 9-11: FRVCA OutdoorHospitality Conference& Expo Hilton Daytona Beach Oceanfront Resort Daytona Beach, Fla.Contact: 850-562-7151WCM40 May 2023Woodalls Campground Magazine"