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Home » Author Archives: Greg Gerber

Author Archives: Greg Gerber

Podcast 155 features TAXA Outdoors CEO Garrett Finney

(Oct. 12, 2017) -- This week’s guest is Garrett Finney, the founder and CEO of TAXA Outdoors, a company based in Houston. He was at the Elkhart open house where the firm was introducing a brand new line of compact, lightweight trailers. These RVs are designed specifically to operate as base camps for outdoor adventures. They lack some of the amenities most people expect to see in an RV, but they make up for that in versatility and the ability to haul gear into very remote places. Read More »

Podcast 154 features RVDA President Phil Ingrassia

(Oct. 5, 2017) -- Today’s guest is Phil Ingrassia, the president of the RV Dealers Association in Fairfax, Va. The 2017 RV Dealers Convention and Expo takes place Oct. 6 to 10 at Bally’s in Las Vegas. He describes RVDA’s Vendor Training Plus program as well as a new initiative with NTP-Stag, and the Partners in Progress meetings scheduled among dealers and manufacturers. He touches on the new slate of speakers for this year, which includes a lot of women and first-time presenters. He also talks about the expo and the number of vendors that will be exhibiting products and services in that sold-out venue. Read More »

Podcast 153 features Meyer Distributing execs

(Sept. 28, 2017) -- This week’s guests are Jeff Braun, the chief financial officer at Meyer Distributing, and Bruce Terwiske, the director of purchasing. The gentlemen explain why Meyer enjoys a competitive advantage in that the firm controls its own fleet of delivery vehicles. As a family-owned business, the staff really understands smaller, independent businesses. Braun and Terwiske also describe the services Meyer offers to RV dealers, suppliers and RV manufacturers. Read More »

Podcast 152: Bob Martin, CEO of Thor Industries

(Sept. 22, 2017) -- Episode 152 begins with a brief synopsis of the Elkhart Dealer Open House, which took place this week. This week’s guest is Bob Martin, the CEO for Thor Industries. He describes how giving the individual companies the authority make decisions on their own works to help move Thor Industries forward faster than it could do if the firm had centralized decision making. He talks a bit about the Jayco acquisition and what it means for the company as well as how the hurricanes and increasing demand for product make it challenging for manufacturers and suppliers to keep up the pace. Read More »

Podcast 151: Chris Patton with Your Christian Faith At Work

(Sept. 15, 2017) -- This week’s guest is Chris Patton, an automobile dealer from La Grange, Ga., who has developed a unique blog called Christian Faith at Work. He helps business owners of all types leverage their businesses for what he calls eternal rewards. He’s the author of 67 Proven Ways to Integrate Your Faith into Business Without Being Pushy. Patton describes ways business owners can incorporate their faith in day-to-day operations by creating a positive culture for all employees and customers. Read More »

Five steps to better travel photography

(Sept. 20, 2017) -- "'You take great pictures–you must have a great camera!' is a comment is quite far from the truth and really annoys me when I hear it," writes Claude Angers, from Leisure Travel Vans. Read More »

Technology on display at open house

By Greg Gerber The Elkhart Dealer Open House officially opened today as thousands of dealers arrived to check out the 2018 RVs being offered by virtually every manufacturer in the industry. Gloomy, rainy weather failed to dampen enthusiasm or interest in the products as every display appeared to be well attended. The Supplier Showcase, featuring 19 companies, has a new location one-half block north of the intersection of County Road 6 and Northland Drive directly across from the Forest River anchor location. Last year, the event took place directly on the corner, but this year the displays were pushed back to a bigger lot with better parking. The larger space allowed more supplier firms to participate Guests can enjoy free ice cream treats today and Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. as well as free lunch catered by Bacon Hill Kitchen and Pub, a local restaurant. Some of the new products on display include a universal spare tire carrier from BAL that can be mounted on RVs as small as teardrop travel trailers. Using a cable drive, it can be cranked down easily so that tire is stored beneath the RV. Suburban is displaying its new Voyager portable fire pit that features an adjustable intensity flame that can be used even in areas that have burn restrictions, ensuring consumers can enjoy a campfire wherever they may be camping. ADCO is introducing a new four-layer RV cover designed specifically for long-term RV lot storage. The polypropylene material is UV treated and includes locking cam buckles to prevent slippage during unattended use. A patent-pending slip seam strapping system cinches tight on the bottom four corners to help prevent wind penetration. Winegard is introducing a new Dish Playmaker portable automatic satellite TV antenna that is shorter and wider, yet delivers 20 percent better signal strength, the firm noted. Two versions are available, a single receiver retails for $249 while a dual receiver sells for $299. The military-grade aluminum alloy reflector makes it stronger, and the higher-performance stepper motors provide more speed and precision tuning. Hymer brings European technology to North America One year ago, the Erwin Hymer Group acquired Roadtrek and displayed several innovative RVs at open house to signal the type of products the firm planned to introduce to the American RV industry. This year, the firm is displaying dozens of vehicles now being built out of two factories in Kitchener, ... Read More »

Covercraft acquires GT covers

(Sept. 19, 2017) -- "We are also excited to apply GT Covers’ proprietary mapping tools to service other verticals, including the RV, outdoor and airline industries, among others," said Zaczepinski. "We are fortunate to have Gary Walsh and his outstanding team join the Covercraft family." Read More »