b'INDUSTRY NEWSCo-Founder of CalOHA Virginia Welton Passes Away at 103 Virginia Welton, the longtime ownergeneralmanager,said,Shecalls ofOrangelandRVParkinOrange,everydaytoaskaboutheroccu-Calif., who helped her husband, El,pancy. launch the precursor to the CaliforniaVirginiapartneredwithherhus-OutdoorHospitalityAssociationband, Eldredge El Welton, in building (CalOHA) a half-century ago, has diedand opening Orangeland in 1972, and after a short battle with cancer. She wasthe two of them were among the small 103.group of RV park entrepreneurs who Theindustryhaslostanotherco-founded the California Travel Parks hero,saidDyanaKelley,CalOHAsAssociation (CTPA) in 1974. CTPA is president and CEO. Many of you willstill the corporation of the California remember Virginia from our birthdayCalOHA). Zoom tribute at the CalOHA Summit inBoth avid RVers, Virginia and El April2022whensheturned101.lovedtravelingthestateandthe Through the magic of technology, weVirginia Welton (center left in white and blue), co-founder of Orangeland RV Park, poses for acountryintheirmotorhomesor were able to celebrate her life and con- photo celebrating Orangelands 50th anniversary in 2022. Welton passed away recently aftertrailers, often traveling for months at tributionstotheRVparkindustrya brief battle with cancer. a time. while at the same time allowing her toI can personally attest to the love see a room of over 200 people that shethefamilyhadforherwhenIat-helped bring together.Cindy Wimbish, and I sat for a fewthat as she would say, Papa built, re- tended Orangelands 50th anniversary FromthedayImether,Kelleyhours under a newly built gazebo andcalled Wimbish, noting, Anyone whocelebration and was able to meet her added, I was drawn to her spirit andchatted about the industry. I was stillmet my mom in the 50-plus years thatchildren,grandchildrenandgreat-passion.Shewassharp,witty,fun,in industry diapers and very muchOrangeland has been in operation hasgrandchildren who were all there to andabitsassy.AllthequalitiesIenjoyed the history lesson.probably been shown her Orangelandcelebrate a legacy, Kelley said. Vir-adore and the fact that she was 97Upuntilthepandemic,Virginiawristwatch and asked if they know ofginia will always have a special place whenwefirstmetmadeherthatlived in the park and would often bethe park.in my heart. much more charming. I stopped byfound sitting outside her RV chatting,When COVID became real, VirginiaIn lieu of flowers, the family has re-Orangeland one sunny afternoon inwaving and watching the comings andmoved in with her daughter but thatquested donations to cancer research 2018 to drop off guides and see thegoings of her park.didnt stop her from keeping track oforganizationsofyourchoiceinher park.Virginiaandherdaughter,Mom was quite proud of her park,the park. Larry Jordan, Orangelandsname.Jeff Crider WCMHilton Hotel Chain to Offer Direct Bookings for AutoCamp Stays McLEAN, Va.Hilton has announcedAutoCamp stays will be bookable onZion,Utah;CapeCod,Mass.;andOur mission at AutoCamp has al-a new exclusive partnership with pre- Hiltons direct channels in the comingCatskills, N.Y.; with Asheville, N.C. andways been to reconnect people with the mieroutdoorhospitalitycompany,months, giving Hilton guests direct ac- Sequoia, Calif., opening this summeroutdoors and each other, said Neil Di-Santa Barbara, Calif.-based AutoCampcess to outdoor hospitality that goes be- and Hill Country, Texas, in 2025.paola, founder and CEO of AutoCamp. to offer Hilton guests an experience thatyond glamping, the release continued.We know todays travelers are crav- By partnering with an incredible global blends the spirit of an iconic outdoorHilton Honors members will be able toing adventures when planning their nextbrand like Hilton, were able to intro-adventure with the hospitality and de- earn and redeem points and enjoy ex- trip, and thats why we look for innova- duce Hilton Honors members to a new sign-forwardthinkingofaboutiqueclusive member benefits while experi- tive and like-minded partners like Auto- hospitality experience rooted in nature. hotel, in spectacular settings that in- encing sought-after locations across theCamp, said Chris Silcock, president ofMore details of the AutoCamp part-clude properties adjacent to popular na- United States, such as Yosemite, Joshuaglobal brands and commercial servicesnership will be announced soon, the re-tional parks, according to a release.Tree and Russian River in California;at Hilton.lease stated.WCM Camping World Sees Revenue DipLINCOLNSHIRE,Ill.Camping World Holdings Inc. (NYSE: CWH) re-ported results for the year and fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, 2023. MarcusLemonis,chairmanand CEO of Camping World Holding, Inc. said,BeginninginDecember,our new vehicle same-store unit growth turned positive, with January and Feb-ruary to date trending up from mid- gross margin improvement beginning singletolow-doubledigits.Wein the second quarter and continuing achieved our goal of significantly im- through the balance of the year. proving our new unit inventory posi-Revenue was $6.2 billion, a de-tion, with less than 7,500 new modelcrease of $740.5 million, or 10.6%. year 2023s remaining as of today. We Used vehicle revenue was a record believe we are outpacing the industry$2.0 billion, an increase of $102.0 mil-with close to 80% in 2024 models cur- lion, or 5.4%, and used vehicle unit rently. We believe that successful nego- sales were a record 56,823 units, an in-tiationsinyear-over-yearpricingcrease of 5,498 units, or 10.7%. reductions on like-for-like new units New vehicle revenue was $2.6 bil-has sparked early demand and newlion, a decline of $651.8 million, or gross margin stabilization.20.2%, and new vehicle unit sales were Matt Wagner, chief operating officer58,731units,adecreaseof11,698 of Camping World Holdings Inc. said,units, or 16.6%. Any reduction of new model pricing The average selling price of new causes us to reset used vehicle valuesand used vehicles declined 4.3% and and slow down the purchases of used4.8%, respectively. RV inventory while market values cor-Same-store used vehicle unit sales rect themselves. We expect this short- increased 5.0%, and same-store new term maneuver to allow used vehiclevehicleunitsalesdecreased22.1%. volumes to improve over time, withWCM4 April 2024 Woodalls Campground Magazine'