Emboldened by an encouraging weather forecast and steady advanced ticket sales, officials for the Pennsylvania Recreation Vehicle and Camping Association (PRVCA) are anticipating another strong showing for the 51st edition of its signature “America’s Largest RV Show,” set to run Sept. 11-15 at the Giant Center in Hershey.
“Things are looking like we’re right where we want to be,” reported PRVCA Executive Director Heather Leach as she prepared for the Public Day opening on Wednesday. “Our goal is to always at least match, and hopefully exceed, the previous year’s attendance which reached 59,000. Plus the weather looks like it’s going to cooperate, which is a big factor. I’d say we’re right on target.”
Leach told RVBUSINESS.com that 45 manufacturers are participating in this year’s Hershey Show including several new exhibitors such as Northern Lite, Intech Trailers and Regency RV. Overall, America’s Largest RV Show covers just over 1 million square feet, an increase of 8,202 square feet from 2018.
Leach related that despite reports of a slowdown in the industry, several participating companies were upbeat and anticipated additional growth. “I was talking to several company representatives when they were setting up and the general mood was positive,” she said. “A couple of dealers said that they were having their third straight record year. Most said there was some dropoff, but they were expecting it and able to adjust.
“They’re interested to see how everything goes in Hershey. It’s generally considers a bellwether for rest of year. So far, I’m thinking our exhibitors are going to have a good show.”
Prior to opening the gates to the public, PRVCA ran Industry Days on Monday and Tuesday. Leach noted, “By hosting industry days prior to the event, it provides our dealers and other exhibitors another day to set up. We also hold our Education Day on Monday which offers several seminars that cover tech training along with sessions on business training and other education topics. They’re always very well attended. I think just about every seat was taken for the majority of the seminars.
“Tonight, we’ll host our membership dinner at the antique auto museum, which our members enjoy,” she added. “We’ll also deliver our state of the association address followed by dinner and drinks, and a silent auction.”
RVWA Holds Networking Breakfast at Hershey
New this year, the RV Women’s Alliance (RVWA), hosted a networking breakfast this morning. RVWA board member Monika Geraci, who also chairs the marketing committee, reported that the official launch for the organization took place in March during the the RV Industry Association’s (RVIA) RVX Show in Salt Lake City.
“The idea for today’s breakfast was to bring together people from across the industry and ultimately to provide a networking opportunity for attendees and help people learn from each other,” Geraci related, noting that RVWA had grown to more than 250 members adding that 35-40 people attended the breakfast. “RVWA is it own nationwide organization founded by women from across the RV industry. Membership is open to anyone — men or women — who support our mission.”
According to Geraci, the overarching goal is to empower and recognize the contributions of women in the industry. “Our mission is to empower women to realize their individual potential, enhance their career experiences, and create opportunities for the next generation of women leaders.
“As a new organization, we are still creating the strategic direction for the next few years, but one of goals is to provide data research to our members related to women in the RV industry. We also want to continue to provide networking opportunities, educational programming and promote mentoring relationships.
“We also want to thank RV Retailer LLC and PRVCA for making today’s event possible and supporting the mission of RVWA.”