Kampgrounds of America Inc. (KOA) will hold its 2009 convention Nov. 17-20 at the Woodlands Waterway Marriott Hotel & Convention Center in The Woodlands/Houston, Texas. “Explore the Possibilities” is the theme for the annual koa-logoevent, which brings together representatives from more than 200 franchised campgrounds from the nation’s largest RV park and campground chain.

The mood for this year’s convention should be upbeat, according to Mike Gast, vice president of communications, as KOA is on track for its best year since 2007, the second best year in the company’s 47-year history. “We are just over performing 2008,” he told Woodall’s Campground Management, as franchisees finished strong on all major holidays this year. He figures the 2009 results will easily put the year in the top five, performance-wise, in KOA’s history.

Franchisees attending the Texas convention will have opportunities to improve their business perspectives by listening to a host of expert speakers:
    • Heather Lutze: “Think Global, Act Social: Exploring How to Generate Local Results in Social Media Marketing”
    • Ruby Newell-Legner: CPS, “Explore the Hidden Treasures in Seven Star Customer Service: Starting at the Top to Impact the Bottom Line”
    • Karen Campbell, telecommunications consultant to KOA: “Streamline Your Communications and Save Money”
    • Chuck Celania, retired president and CEO, Independent Bank: “Exploring Financing options for Facilities and Accommodations”

    For the first time KOA has scheduled a full day of KampSight sessions for beginners and experts, as well as a Work Kamper Job Fair at which franchisees can help line up next season’s staff.

KOA Convention
Session Descriptions

   KOA has lined up 17 separate forums or sessions on crucial topics for campground owners to attend.
   Among the panel forum topics:
   • Finding and Keeping Great Work Kampers
    • How 20 Groups Can Benefit Your Business
    • Value Kard Rewards: Program Update and Your Questions Answered
    • Exploring Your Quality Review for 2010
    • Successful Management with off-Site Ownership
   Meanwhile, marketing workshops sessions are on these topics:
   • Explore the New KOA.com
   • Think Global, Act Social
   • It’s Free and It Works: The Power of Local PR
   • Talk to Your Kampers Where They Live: On Their E-mail
   Facilities workshops will be held on these topics:
   • Exploring KOA Lodging
   • Exploring Financing Options for Facilities and Accommodations
   • Explore Ways to Create More Value in Your Existing Lodges
   • Exploring the Best Practices to Make Your KOA Golden
   Guest service workshop sessions will be held on these topics:
   • Exploring the Front Desk Experience: Helping Your Frontline Learn to Shine
   • Giving Your Community a Reason to Explore Your KOA
   • Streamline Your Communications and Save Money
   • Fundraising for KOA Care Camps

Full Convention Schedule


Tuesday, Nov. 17

7-8 a.m.: Pre-Convention KS Registration, Continental Breakfast
7 a.m.-8 p.m.: KOA Convention Registration
8-9 a.m.: KampSight and Work Kamper General Session – Jim Rogers / Jef Sutherland
9:15 a.m.-10:15 a.m.: Ten KampSight Setup Fundamentals to Make You More Money or KampSight for the

Beginner User
10:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m.: KampSight Reports; Unlock the Secrets of your Kampground or KampSight for the Intermediate User
11:45 a.m.-12:45 p.m.: Lunch on your own
12:45 p.m.-2:45 p.m.: Work Kamper Job Fair If not attending KOA Job Fair choose from the following sessions:
12:45 p.m-1:30 p.m.: Selling VKR at the Front Desk – Chris Mink or Ten KampSight Setup Fundamentals to Make You More Money
1:45 p.m.-2:30 p.m.: Guest Recognition; The Power of KampSight or KampSight Reports; Unlock the Secrets of your Kampground
3-5 p.m.: KampSight User Technology Exchange
5-6 p.m.: 1st Timer’s Orientation
6 -8 p.m.: Welcome KOA Get-Together

Wednesday, Nov. 18

8-8:30 a.m.: KOA Breakfast

8:30-10:30 a.m.: Welcome to the 2009 KOA Convention – Jim Rogers/Pat Hittmeier/Lorne Armer
10:45 a.m.-12 p.m.: Panel Sessions: Exploring the Opportunities.
12:15-1:45 p.m.: Partners, Rising Star and FOY Awards Lunch
2-3 p.m.: Marketing Keynote – “Think Global, Act Social: Exploring how to generate local results with Social Media Marketing” – Part One – Heather Lutze
3:15-4:15 p.m.: Marketing Workshop Sessions
4:30-5:30 p.m.: Marketing Workshop Sessions
5:30-7:30 p.m.: Expo Open
6-7 p.m.: Owner’s Association Care Camps Board Meeting

Thursday, Nov. 19

   Yellow Shirt Day
7 a.m.-8 a.m.: Morning Group Scoops
8 a.m.-8:30 a.m.: Breakfast with Exhibitors
8 a.m.-3 p.m.: KOA Expo
11 a.m.-1 p.m.: Lunch

Friday, Nov. 20


7 a.m.-8 a.m.: Morning Group Scoops
8 a.m.-9:45 a.m.: Celebrating KOA Breakfast
10 a.m.-11 a.m.: Guest Service Keynote: “Explore the Hidden Treasures in Seven Star
Guest Service: Starting at the Top to Impact the Bottom Line” – Ruby Newell-Legner
11:15 a.m.-12:30 p.m.: Guest Service Workshop Sessions
Lunch on your own
2 p.m.-3:15 p.m.: Guest Service Workshop Sessions
3:30 p.m.-4:45 p.m.: Facilities Workshop Sessions
5 p.m.-6 p.m.: Facilities Workshop Sessions
6 p.m.: Care Camps Dinner & Auction