By Darian Armer
Assistant Editor, RV Daily Report
BUSHNELL, Fla. — Greg and Yvonne Mixon were involved in their family produce business for many years when they decided it was time for a change. Not wanting to leave a family business, the couple decided to purchase another family business they could involve their three children in. That’s when they decided to purchase Paradise Oaks RV Resort in Bushnell, Fla.
“We felt the need to continue our own family business. We wanted to be a part of something that our kids could be involved in and have life experiences,” said Greg. “We looked at many different options and industries, but when we were introduced to the RV industry it seemed to click really quickly. It felt like a community and a personal industry.”
The Mixons purchased the 235 site campground in 2014, when their children were ages 14, 11 and 8. Since that time they have been busy making improvements and learning the ins and outs of the industry and campground.
“So far we thoroughly enjoy the business. It’s something we can talk about in simple terms and we understand the aspect of customer service,” said Yvonne.
The Mixons live about an hour south of the campground and spend at least three days a week on site.
“We have a wonderful group of people who work and live at the resort,” said Yvonne. “We had learning curves we had to tackle and we had to learn quickly what customers are looking for. We’ve been focused so much on the future of the industry. The nice part of having qualified staff in place is that they can take care of day-to-day operations while we continue to look to improve.”
One way the Mixons have gone about learning the industry is by joining the Florida Association of RV Parks as well as the national association.
“We have attended as many meetings as possible,” said Yvonne. “The relationships and connections we’ve made with other park owners are invaluable. They face the same trials and tribulations. There can always be more resources and we want to make positive changes.”
The Mixons have learned that a campground must continually evolve to meet the needs of its customers.
“We are making sites that are unique in our market. We have large, concrete and full amenity sites,” said Greg. “We have developed this park and an additional 20 acres that will be just grass, trees and walking space. People who want to call Paradise Oaks home will have beautiful manicured sites.”
The Mixons said they want their park to be an activities-based park.
“We are adding additional square footage for guests to enjoy and, once complete, the park will have over 10,000 square feet of room and space for guests to enjoy and conduct activities of their own,” said Greg. “We have hired activity directors that will come down in October and will focus on making the place an activity resort.”
The Mixons have started construction on phase one of their expansion and improvement efforts, which includes 110 new sites and should be complete by Oct. 1. These sites will be available in November. Phase 2 is scheduled to start early next year, which will contain 170 large sites with concrete pads and includes a park model village, pickle ball courts and other great amenities.
“We want to have an area that is dedicated to and committed to just park models,” said Greg. “There will be 55 park models.”
20 acres of Green Space will be part of phase 2 and will feature walking/bike trails that will meander through 100 year old oak trees, and even more amenities.
“It’ll be a special place,” said Greg. “Usable ‘Green’ space is unique to the industry. We are committed to making this a unique park for the right reasons.”
The resort will feature friendly staff, large sites, clean facilities with an activities schedule that will give everyone something to look forward to. The Mixons say the resort already fosters a strong community.
“That is what is inspiring us. From the very first day it has been very community focused. When campers come to paradise oaks they become a part of a nice tight-knit friendly group of people,” said Yvonne. “Once people give us a try, they’ll agree they have found paradise.”
For more information, visit www.paradiseoaksrv.com, or call 352.793.1823.