KERRVILLE, Texas — Tom and Lisa Cauthen had spent more than 20 years running various businesses, including a scuba diving store, a health club and a mobile home park in Huntsville, when Lisa started asking Tom about some of his fondest memories.
“He told me how much he loved camping with his uncle when he was growing up,” said Lisa, who had similarly fond memories of camping growing up with her own family.
After visiting the Texas Hill Country, the Cauthens found the area too much to resist. They sold their Huntsville businesses and built Johnson Creek RV Resort & Park, a 49-site park in a pecan orchard off Highway 27, roughly 11 miles west of Kerrville, which they opened in October 2005.
Though the decision to go into the campground business was a career change for both of them, the Cauthens are clearly heading in the right direction. Earlier this month, Johnson Creek RV Resort received the “Small Park of the Year Award” from the Texas Association of Campground Owners (TACO). The award recognizes excellence in operations, customer service reviews, park promotions, directory ratings, management skills, employee training and community service.
Johnson Creek also received two 5W ratings from the Woodall’s North American Campground Directory for having top quality RV and recreational facilities. The 5W rating, which Johnson Creek first received in 2006, is the highest rating given by the Woodall’s directory.
Tom and Lisa Cauthen live and work at the RV resort with their daughter, Delanie, who helps with tours, works in the office, waitresses during catered dinners and helps out with game nights.
Lisa Cauthen said they have built a strong customer base of Winter Texans, who fill the park for several months during the winter season.
“In the wintertime, we have activities seven days a week,” Lisa Cauthen explained. “We do potlucks, Saturday breakfasts, bingo, game nights, off-site outings and have ladies that teach quilting. On Valentine’s Day, we have a Valentine’s dinner for everybody in the park. We also have a wedding chapel and do services there on Sundays.”
Johnson Creek also attracts small rally groups, and the park caters to them with catfish dinners and barbecues. “We just built a new Western town-themed rally hall and that facility helps with our rally business,” Lisa Cauthen said.
The Cauthens say they enjoy high levels of repeat business by providing value to their guests with reasonable rates and fantastic amenities. “I think our prices are very reasonable and that’s why we stay full. We just have a beautiful place,” Lisa Cauthen said. “People like the more intimate setting. And it’s nice because we get to see the same people every year.”
For more information on Johnson Creek RV Resort & Park, please contact Lisa Cauthen at (800) 933-6578 and visit www.johnsoncreekrvresort.com.
Johnson Creek RV Resort & Park is a member of the Texas Association of Campground Operators, which publishes and distributes the Texas RV Travel & Camping Guide each year in addition to organizing awards competitions for its affiliated parks using outside judges. For more information about the 2011 directory or for statistics involving the latest camping trends in Texas and New Mexico parks, please contact Brian Schaeffer at (817) 307-0129 or visit www.texascampgrounds.com and www.texascabinrentals.net.
SOURCE: Texas Association of Campground Operators