Joe McAdams - CEO, Thousand Trails

The U.S. Congress has officially recognized June as "RV Centennial Month" to "commemorate 100 years of enjoyment of recreation vehicles in the United States."

Back in 1910 when RVers first took to the road in the early versions of the "recreation vehicle" who would have thought that 100 years later Congress would pass a resolution honoring the longevity of an industry that got its start from the simple desire to travel the country while enjoying all the comforts of home.

Long before an officially numbered highway system came into play, "auto-campers" traversed America in an effort to "See America First," based on a slogan adopted by the Great Northern Railway in the early 1900s which quickly became part of the popular vernacular. Why not "See America First"? And once World War I started in Europe, summer vacation took on a homegrown agenda and Americans began to seek out scenic destinations across the U.S. for some R&R. Popular spots for campers and auto-campers throughout the U.S. were those that offered picturesque landscapes that rivaled popular European locales, not to mention plenty of camping accommodations and lots of activity. The wide open West, including the wonders of the Grand Canyon, idyllic lakeside resorts nestled in the Adirondack and Poconos mountain ranges, and the sandy beaches of our coastlines... unparalleled experiences right in our own backyards!

The RV industry sprung up from those desires to travel the country and has held its own through a great many changes. Depressions, recessions, the advent of commercial airline travel, gas rationing, fluctuations in fuel prices and more. In his interview with TrailBlazer this month, RV Historian David Woodworth touches on why RVing is still a popular way to travel. There is a certain freedom that goes along with RVing. You are the captain of the ship, so to speak.

Not surprisingly, the resolutions introduced in both the Senate and House of Representatives were done so by men from Indiana, a state considered to be the RV Capital of the World. The Senate resolution also included language that "encourages the people of the United States to celebrate this anniversary by taking part in recreation vehicle vacations."

In honor of this milestone, why not plan to catch a sunrise in Acadia while staying at one of our Bar Harbor locations, or dig your toes in the sand at our coast-side resorts, or come home to the heartland and visit our locations in the Midwest? So what are you waiting for? You heard what they said... Get in the RV and go!

Joe McAdams
President, Equity LifeStyle Properties, Inc.