More than 85 people, and representatives from 35 campgrounds, attended the annual Ohio Campground Owners Association (OCOA) Fall Conference that was held from Oct. 24-25 in Hartville, Ohio.

Kristi Smith, executive director of OCOA, told Woodall’s Campground Management (WCM) that the conference took place in the northeastern part of the state and featured park tours at Countryside Campground and Cherokee Park Family Campground, both located in Mogadore, Woodside Lake Park in Streetsboro, and the Akron-Canton Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Camp-Resort in Uniontown.

“The tours really give our members a chance to see what is working, or not working, at other parks,” said Smith. “Networking is really a big part of the conference. Members are able to bounce ideas of each other and it is an informal environment to talk about concerns.”

Smith said the park tours also featured different sizes of campground, from large to small, that allowed every member to relate their own experiences to at least one of the campgrounds they visited.

Dinner at the Hartville Kitchen was also popular with attendees. Smith said the kitchen is known in the area for serving Amish-themed food. She said that during dinner attendees were able to jot down discussion topics and that everyone in the group discussed them for 5-10 minutes.

Incorporating good Wi-Fi service was one of the hottest topics, as owners look to provide the best service for their customers.

“We talked about Wi-Fi on both days,” said Smith. “Owners want something that is going to be reliable for their campers. Obviously it is a big deal for campers.”

Smith mentioned that the association is looking at asking some Wi-Fi providers to come to the spring conference and talk with owners about what they can do to provide better access.

“The fall conference is really an informal event,” she said. “During the spring event we will hold our business meeting, get speakers to come, hold an expo and elect officers.”

The 2018 OCOA Spring Conference & Trade Show will be March 2-3 at the Embassy Suites Columbus Airport in Columbus.