Editor’s Note: William E. Small, owner of Small Country Camping in Louisa, Va., provided this Letter to the Editor on an opposing viewpoint on the contentious issue of state park campgrounds joining private RV park and campground associations. On Oct. 13, Small delivered a petition to Gov. Bob McDonnell and his secretary of commerce and trade, James Cheng, calling for a halt to expansion and construction of all campgrounds, cabins, marinas and other facilities that compete with private industry. The petition was signed by several Virginia campground owners
Not all is as cozy as it may seem from your article in the Nov. issue (ARVC Clarifies Controversial State Park Position…). In Virginia, for example, a number of private campgrounds — including 14 members of the Virginia Campground Association (VCA) and a group of Kampground of America members — have sent petitions to the Governor demanding that the state stop building camping sites and cabins.
David Gorin tends to walk lock step with ARVC without considering the interests of many of the VCA members. Unfortunately, a large group of Virginia campground owners recognize that the state parks are building an unsustainable empire. They build and build and then can’t keep up with repairs and they demand more and more personnel to service them. VCA has not benefitted from state park membership…in fact the state parks take advantage of VCA in their directory and grossly discounted dues.
So, please don’t lump Virginia with the states that are “enjoying the fruits of collaboration” with state parks. Obviously not all Virginia campground owners or VCA members agree with the Executive Director.
William E. Small, owner