Joe McAdams - President, Equity LifeStyle Properties

Henry Flagler was on to something when he began to develop areas of Florida to accommodate winter vacationers back in the late 1800s. On the advice of his wife's physician, Flagler first wintered in Jacksonville in 1876. A few years later he visited St. Augustine and found the hotel and transportation systems lacking and as they say, the rest is history.

Flagler, who made his fortune with Standard Oil, quickly recognized that the Sunshine State was a draw to Northerners seeking to escape the winter weather. He went on to develop not only hotels, but also the railroads, along Florida's eastern coast. He certainly was a TrailBlazer. His vision made Florida one of the most sought-after vacation spots in the U.S. welcoming more than 40 million visitors each year.

Snowbirds flock to Florida. They also flock to Texas, Arizona, California and several Gulf Coast locations. They are all seeking the same thing escape from the winter weather and the opportunity to relax with like-minded folks. The next several months is peak snowbird season and the population of many snowbird destinations will double, if not triple.

Are you planning to fly along this winter? If so, be sure to read this month's features we hope we've given you some of the basics on what you need to get started as well as a few choice destinations to try if you're planning to snowbird. We looked to provide some brief insight into the whos, whats, wheres, whys and hows of snowbirding.

Also, take a look at the ELS calendar of events on Page 22 and 23. There are plenty of concerts and sporting events to design your winter getaway around. Luaus, casino nights, golf tournaments, plenty of music and dancing and even a prom are on tap! It's been said over and over again, staying active keeps you young and young at heart!

And while you're making plans for winter, don't forget our fall activities are still in full swing at many of our locations. The vibrant fall colors provide the perfect backdrop for the Oktoberfests, harvest celebrations and of course, all the haunted happenings for Halloween.

A round of applause to those that participated in our "My Best RV Trip Ever" essay contest. Your stories are the stuff of which memories are made. And while no two stories are ever the same, many of them shared the common theme of family while one or two really drove home the point that life in an RV is always an adventure!

As some of our locations close shop for the season, I'd like to join them in a collective thank you to everyone who made Summer 2010 a season to remember. And to those that are just coming into "season", we look forward to spending some time with you.

Joe McAdams
President, Equity LifeStyle Properties, Inc.