The Escapees, a 30,000-member RV owners club, plans to investigate complaints that Rapid City, S.D., officials are pressuring Walmart managers not to allow RVers to park overnight in Walmart parking lots.
Walmart stores often allow RVers to spend the night in their parking lots free of charge, a practice independent-minded Escapees members generally support. Many private campground owners, however, are opposed to what they perceive as an unregulated camping situation.
Earlier this year, the Escapees boycotted members of an Illinois campground association after it tried to prevent RVers from staying overnight in Walmart parking lots. The association later reversed itself.
“Rapid City has decided to do the same thing,” said Joe Peterson, president of the Escapees. “I’m going to see what can be done and find out if they really want the battle they’re getting themselves into.”
Rapid City officials were not immediately available for comment.