The PCOA was able to gather for strategic planning and to take part in team building.

The Pennsylvania Campground Owners Association (PCOA) convened its Fall board meeting from Sept. 12-13, setting the stage for strategic planning for the association. The meeting, held at the Blue Mountain Resort in Palmerton, Pa., brought together its board of directors and executive staff to chart a course for the organization’s growth and development, according to a press release.

The planning sessions were facilitated by Jacqualine Price Osafo, of Vista Cova, a firm that works with non-profit organizations on membership and value. Osafo, a strategy advisor and speaker who hails from the Chicago area, has a background in association management. Board members worked in groups on its mission, vision and goals for the association going forward.

Surveys to the membership were conducted prior to the meeting to evaluate the strengths and challenges of PCOA and the results were used as a framework for a strategic plan designed to foster innovation, sustainability and continued success.

Key highlights from the PCOA’s strategic planning meeting include:

Membership: Diversity in membership was discussed, recognizing the wide range of differences in Pennsylvania campgrounds, from large destination parks to small mom-and-pop operations. Each member is valued. Growth and retention in membership are achieved as the association expands and improves the range of benefits offered to PCOA members.

Education: The association is dedicated to offering campground owners, managers and staff tools to increase the skills and knowledge they need to provide exceptional service. PCOA will continue to provide relevant educational programs at the annual convention to ensure industry professionals are well-prepared. Scholarships will be promoted.

Advocacy and Industry Support: PCOA is committed to advocating for campground owners and the broader camping industry. They will work closely with state and local legislative bodies to address regulatory issues and ensure fair treatment.

Marketing: PCOA provides promotional opportunities within the association’s marketing channels and will explore new avenues to enhance member campgrounds’ visibility among potential guests, as well as generally promoting camping and RVing in the state.

As a part of the two-day event, the board participated in team-building activities guided by the Blue Mountain staff, and attendees spent the night at the resort’s camping area in glamping tents.

The full strategic plan in its completed form will be presented to the membership in the near future.

“We were fortunate to be able to come together at one of our member parks and share the camping experience,” said Jason Vaughan, PCOA’s executive director. “It was a great way to commune as a board and spend two days working on the future of PCOA. This year we are proud to celebrate 60 years of supporting and promoting privately owned campgrounds and RV parks in Pennsylvania. We hold strategic planning every three years as a way to stay vibrant and forward-thinking.”

Special guests at the event dinner were Don Bennett, from Merchantry Tourism, and Beverly Gruber, retired PCOA executive director.