Opinion

RV industry loses a gentle giant

(June 23, 2014) — It’s ironic that Jay himself has not yet been inducted into that honorable legion of visionary leaders. Although it would have been much better for the Hall of Fame to recognize him when he was alive, I’m hoping there will be a groundswell of support to see that Jay is inducted into the class of 2015.

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Are dealers REALLY willing to embrace model year consistency?

(June 17, 2014) — The RV industry will likely never agree to consolidate model year changes to a specific date, like open house week, even if it would benefit the entire industry. With RV dealers demanding change and RV manufacturers consistently innovating, neither side wants their hands tied. Here’s why.

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Dealers fuming over early new model introductions

(June 13, 2014) — What’s the purpose of the Elkhart Open House? To sell RVs, of course. The real question is, why would manufacturers ply dealers with plenty of liquor at the event and get them to place large orders for an entire year of projected sales only to cut them off at the knees by introducing new models six or seven months later?

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Campground owners: Cut the cord, upgrade wireless

(June 4, 2014) — Why bend over and allow cable companies to dictate how you are to deliver increasingly expensive service to the 21 percent of RVers who still want cable, while allowing poor Internet connections to aggravate 80 percent of customers to the point the flamethrowers light up your online reviews with explosive comments about your free “high speed” wireless?

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NPS refuses to reimburse states to reopen parks

(May 19, 2014) — Here’s the rub. During the days the states paid for the parks to be open, the federal racketeers still collected gate receipts, all campground fees and concession income. In other words, the states could not even offset their extorted costs with any income generated by the parks. The federal mafia had a lock on all funds coming into the parks.

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Campgrounds beware: All you can eat tacos is ‘racist’

(May 12, 2014) — That’s right folks. The thought police are clamping down hard on the overt racism exhibited when white people celebrate Mexican culture. Stanford Daily refers to that activity as “cultural appropriation,” which it defines as “actions that trivialize aspects of a culture by not respecting a custom’s symbolic significance or the history of a style of dress or other artifact.”

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I’ll bet RVIA won’t move from Louisville

(May 9, 2014) — Rather than looking at venue options, the RVIA Show Committee would be better suited at looking at content options. And the best option, in my opinion, is to work with RVDA to develop a joint show close to Elkhart that includes extensive educational programs, an industry trade show involving suppliers, plenty of networking opportunities, and places to party at the end of the day.

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Why doesn’t someone invent a sewer hose tube?

(May 5, 2014) — His fifth wheel came with a plastic tube that holds the sewer hose. The manufacturer, I’m sure, thinks it is a marketable convenience. However, the tube is designed to fit ONLY the hose. It is too small to fit the hose and the fittings. That means he must remove the sewer fittings each time he needs to store the hose. Talk about a yucky job.

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McMahon mess worse than expected

(April 28, 2014) — When the dust settles, someone needs to be held accountable for this trail of destruction that is impacting real lives. Egocentric multimillionaires should not be able to walk away unscathed from a situation like this while real people for whom $20,000 is not just a nice weekend away, but a significant investment, are left holding the bag.

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Feeling burdened by regulation? You aren’t alone

(April 17, 2014) — What I’m sensing is that regulations are becoming the new economic driver of revenue to the government. It is impossible for business owners to even remotely comply with all the tax laws and regulations imposed by government agencies at all levels. Violations are bringing in untold UNEARNED revenue to government bureaucrats.

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RV Daily Report celebrates fifth anniversary

(April 1, 2014) — It has been an amazing experience, and I can’t thank my readers and advertisers enough for their continuous support. It seems that the market and publishing industry is changing so quickly, sometimes it’s hard for me to keep up. But, every day, we plug away to keep the industry informed about what’s happening among RV dealers, suppliers, manufacturers, distributors, campgrounds and RV owners. Today, I’m announcing that we’ll be launching a new initiative — RV Daily Report On The Road. This has been a long time in coming. It’s something I wanted to do in 2009, and again every year since.

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Now that’s creative competition!

(March 28, 2014) — “There are lot of competitors at breakfast. Even the advertising all looks the same, and it’s hard to distinguish one breakfast sandwich from another. We needed marketing that is not going to be taken as your ordinary breakfast-menu marketing,” Niccol told Ad Age. Ronald McDonald eating breakfast at Taco Bell. It’s brilliant!

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A great idea from England

(March 19, 2014) — This year, Wellhouse Leisure launched a new HomeView service offering personal demonstrations and test drives at people’s homes, which is rapidly proving a great initiative, with 12 visits already booked for this month. So, this motorhome manufacturer in the London area makes appointments to show their vehicles to consumers at their homes. Buyers can test drive them in their neighborhood where everyone can see the family is considering a shiny new caravan. Granted, England is considerably smaller in size than the United States or Canada, and a manufacturer in Elkhart isn’t going to deliver a unit to a prospective buyer in Arizona for a test drive. But, I think this English company realized something in launching this service.

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With industry on a roll, Gaeddert offers predictions

(Feb. 27, 2014) — I look at how well we are all doing as an industry and as individual companies, and then I look at how much room for improvement we all have. And it cranks me up another notch! As an industry, let’s not get complacent and “settle!”

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Families flock to Phoenix dealer show

(Feb. 24, 2014) — Over the weekend, one of my relatives begged me to go with him to an RV show that was taking place at Cardinal’s stadium right outside Phoenix in the suburb of Glendale. When we got there, I realized it was just a single dealer show put on by LaMesa RV. But, it was ideally positioned to attract families.

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The weirdest way ever to sell an RV manufacturer

(Feb. 20, 2014) — The unknown “U.S. Based Motorized RV Manufacturer” is up for sale — again. Mark Sage, managing director for Tampa-based Wyndham Capital, re-posted the for sale listing in LinkedIn’s Recreation Vehicle Industry Group. Of course, he’s not providing any details of the company or its product in the post, nor is he responding to a media inquiry.

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Printed directories are going the way of dinosaurs

(Feb. 18, 2014) — There was no earth-shattering revelation today when RV Travel released results of a recent survey showing that RV users are abandoning printed campground directories in droves. I’ve been seeing people move away from printed magazines and directories for almost nine years.

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Did ASV violate WARN Act with plant closings?

(Feb. 13, 2014) — It wasn’t long after we reported that Allied Specialty Vehicles had shuttered the Monaco towable division on Monday that people started asking whether the company had broken federal law in the process. While the company may have violated the letter of the law, it certainly complied with the spirit of that law.

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Is RV Daily Report ‘too commercial?’

(Feb. 12, 2014) — I could really use some honest feedback from my readers. I have received several complaints recently that RV Daily Report is too commercial, that our stories sound like advertisements, and that we give advertisers free reign to publish whatever they want, whenever they want. I have also heard that we are the “tabloid of the RV industry,” which is good in that tabloids make more money than any other publication, but bad if it reflects on our professionalism.

I’d like to know if that is really the case or if it is just grumbling by people who dislike particular firms, or the way we cover their own companies.

Here’s your chance to bust the editor in the chops. If a blind spot exists in this publication, please point it out. I’d appreciate the honest accountability.

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Aging workforce creating issues for younger workers

(Feb. 6, 2014) — In the end, Millennials should be expected to treat older workers with respect. Mature workers should be more willing to give younger team members some leeway to try different things — it may wind up improving the whole company. And middle age workers caught in the middle can mentor younger workers while learning extraordinarily valuable life lessons from people who have been there, done that — several times — and learned from their mistakes.

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