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For the past three years, Kampgrounds of America Inc. (KOA) has offered a “Camp Sitter” program to franchisees, allowing campground owners to take a take a short vacation, attend a conference or simply take care of other family business.
According to KOA, the program places retired KOA campground in parks to oversee operations for periods up to seven days.
The service, which costs $100 per day, is underwritten by KOA’s alumni fund, so campground operators affiliated with the Billings, Mont.-based company only pay $50 a day.
“Campgrounds are finding it’s a good deal for them,” said Pete Reed, KOA’s alumni coordinator, adding that campground operators’ use of the program has dramatically increased from 27 camper nights in 2001 to 480 camper nights in 2004. “So far in 2005 we’re already running way ahead of last year’s figures.”
A total of 42 teams of retired KOA campground operators are available for dispatch to any KOA where they are needed.
Reed said KOA President Jim Rogers started the “Camp Sitter” program after campground operators complained they couldn’t take time off in November to attend KOA’s annual convention.