A cacophony of sound fills the front office of a Burleson, Texas, RV park: hammers driving nails into new shelves, a power washer spraying down the roof, voices welcoming guests and three chirping birds, according to the Fort Worth Business Press.
Fresh off a new partnership with a nationwide RV park chain, Rustic Creek Ranch’s staff of 20 – and some temporary hires – is giving the north Johnson County venue a bit of a facelift in advance of the summer vacation kick off.
“This day and age, families want an affordable place to go, a safe place to go, where they don’t have to worry,” said Steve Stafford, who has managed Rustic Creek Ranch since last summer.
All the work taking place at Rustic Creek Ranch reflects not necessarily a new direction, but rather an increased focused. Over the past several years, the RV park has looked toward a more stable revenue source – families on vacation – by adding amenities, activities and buildings.
“Several years back we had no problems renting our RV sites because oil and gas was going so big,” he said. “But the last couple years things kind of dropped off.”
The 70-acre park has 248 sites for tents or RVs and another 37 cottages that hold between two people and six people. Weekend business was good, but Sundays through Thursdays weren’t as strong as they should have been. On average, about 100 RV/tent sites are occupied, but an additional 50 sites would be good, Stafford said.
First up in improvements was a name change, ditching its previous incarnation of RV Ranch to its current moniker, Rustic Creek Ranch. Since then, the park’s four halls, two of which hold 125 people while the remaining two each hold about 50 people, have hosted weddings, church groups, university get-togethers and corporate events.
“Changing the name helped attract those kinds of events,” Stafford said. Soon, one of the four halls will be used exclusively for activities, such as bingo, movie night and karaoke.
Late last year came Rustic Creek Ranch’s biggest move: a franchise agreement with Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Camp-Resorts, an RV park chain – a partnership Stafford calls a “no-brainer.”
Founded in 1969, Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Camp-Resorts are franchised through Leisure Systems Inc., a subsidiary of The Park River Corp. Each campground is required to have at least 125 campsites, a laundry facility, and a 1,000-square-feet retail store in addition to special amenities such as a swimming pool, game room, playground, theater and a 20-foot by 40-foot covered pavilion, according to the company’s website.
“We’ll be adding this coming year for the summer a pedal carts track on the north end of the property and laser tag,” Stafford said. A third swimming pool will join the existing two. Other activities include arts and crafts, themed weekends and several daily appearances by Yogi Bear. “We’ve purchased a fire truck, which we’ll be converting over for rides.”
Stafford expects to hire another 10 people in the future, too.
Cottages are available on week nights, weekends and by the weekly. They cost between $534 to $714 weekly, while RV sites start at $28 daily and run between $295 to $450 per week.
Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Camp-Resorts, based in Cincinnati, Ohio, is a family-focused franchise network of campgrounds. The company has 75 locations in 28 states in the U.S. and Canada.