Businesses Attract Active RVers
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Affinity Group, Inc.
Monday April 3, 2006
World’s Largest RV Club Names its Favorites
(Daytona, Fla.) — When Kenny Kane, Senior Director, Media and Communications for the Daytona International Speedway, arrived at the then named Great North American RV Rally in Louisville, Kentucky in 2003, he was amazed at what he saw. He was there representing the Daytona International Speedway (www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com) as the Good Sam Club (www.goodsamclub.com). Welcome Mat Award winner for the most RV-friendly NASCAR event, the Daytona 500 for the first time.
As he surveyed a sea of 5,000+ RVs from a room overlooking the event, he asked Sue Bray, executive director of the Good Sam Club and event organizer, why the event wasn’t being held at Daytona.
Now the just named four-time Welcome Mat Award winner is hosting the largest annual gathering of RVers in North America. “It is certainly a case of having a vision and making it a reality,” said Kane. “We are pleased to host The Rally at the “World Center of Racing” and home of NASCAR’s most prestigious race – the Daytona 500. It’s the first-time it has ever been held at a NASCAR facility and it’s a perfect marriage of two industries that support and rely on one another.”
This year’s The Rally (www.therally.com) is set to begin Friday at the Daytona International Speedway. With thousands of RVers rolling into Daytona this week, the event is shaping up to be the largest yet for the event. It is also the site of this year’s Welcome Mat Award event honoring the 2006 Good Sam Club winners who were selected by Club members as the most RV-friendly businesses and organizations.
“As this travel and recreation segment continues to grow, it’s easy to see why businesses are investing in attracting RVers,” said Bray. “The Good Sam Club alone has one million members, which can mean a significant increase in revenue when you market and cater to them. Several new major businesses contact us every year to develop partnerships and marketing programs to target this viable market.”
Still the fastest growing travel segment on the continent, RVing is attracting families, baby boomers, retirees, tailgaters, outdoor enthusiasts and travelers of all kinds.
U.S. ownership of RVs has reached record levels, reveals a 2005 University of Michigan study commissioned by Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA). Nearly one in 12 U.S. vehicle-owning households now owns an RV. That's nearly 8 million households–a 15 percent increase during 2001-2005 and a 58 percent gain during 1980-2005. Approximately 8.2 million RVs are on the nation's roads, according to the Michigan study. RVIA estimates nationwide there are as many as 30 million RV enthusiasts, including RV renters.
“The Welcome Mat Awards are our way of recognizing the people and businesses that work hard every day to make the life of an RVer easy and enjoyable,” said Bray. “These winners exemplify how important it is to keep RVers on the road and in the lifestyle. They are excellent role models for their colleagues.”
The Rally in 2006 hosted by the Good Sam Club, Camping World President’s Club, Coast to Coast Resorts, Woodall’s and MotorHome and Trailer Life magazines.
The 2006 Welcome Mat Award Winners!
* Good Sam Park: America's Best Campground, Branson, Missouri
* Dinghy Vehicle: Saturn
* Tow Vehicle: Ford
* Motor Oil: Shell Rotella
* RV Show: The Florida RV Supershow, Tampa, FL
* Fast Food Restaurant: Wendy's
* Fuel/Gas Station: Flying J
* Propane Outlet: Flying J
* Sit-Down Restaurant: Cracker Barrel
* Ice Cream Parlor: Dairy Queen
* Sandwich Shop: Subway
* Outlet Mall: Tanger Outlet Mall
* Golf Course: Hiddenbrooke Golf Club, Vallejo, CA
* NASCAR Event: Daytona 500
* Shopping Center/Mall: Wal-Mart
* Pet Supply Store: PetsMart
* RV Accessory Store: Camping World
* Craft Store: Michaels
* Casino: Harrah's
* Tourist Attraction/Amusement Park/Museum: Walt Disney World
Resort, Orlando, FL
* State or Province to Fish: Florida
* State to Visit in an RV: Florida
* Province to Visit in an RV: British Columbia
About Welcome Mat Awards
The Welcome Mat Award is a prestigious honor given to businesses and organizations located in the United States and Canada that demonstrate a high level of service to RVers. The million Good Sam Club members cast their votes during balloting process for their favorite RV-friendly businesses and organizations. The Welcome Mat Awards began in 2002.
About Good Sam Club
The Good Sam Club, www.goodsamclub.com is the world’s largest recreational vehicle (RV) owners' organization with nearly 1 million member families. Founded in 1966, the Club offers its members a wide variety of services, including RV insurance, extended warranty on RVs (the Continued Service Plan), Emergency Road Service, RV financing, a Good Sam Credit Card and Life & Health Insurance, as well as discounts at parks, campgrounds and RV events. Good Sam members also receive a subscription to Highways, the Club’s popular RV travel magazine. The Club also represents more than 2,000 local RV chapters designed to bring RVers together from similar geographic regions for group camping excursions. Extremely committed to its RV members as well as to the environment, the Club is the founder of the annual National Cleanup Day program and an advocate of public land access, Adopt-A-Highway programs and Adopt-A-Park programs, to name a few. The Good Sam Club is headquartered in Ventura, California, and is a subsidiary of the Affinity Group, Inc.
Contact: Sue Bray, Executive Director, Good Sam Club
Julie Calzone, CEO/President, Calzone & Associates
337.235.2924 ext. 3, firstname.lastname@example.org