Billings Mont-based Kampgrounds of America Inc. (KOA) has added 15 new campgrounds, pushing the number of KOA-affiliated parks to over 450 nationwide.
According to a press release, the new parks stretch from California to North Carolina, and cover the gamut from convenient full-service overnight facilities to expansive campgrounds that are true destinations.
Steve Albrecht, who owns a park in Staunton, Va., said he has been looking to purchase a KOA campground for 20 years.
“I’d been watching KOA for what seemed like forever,” Albrecht said. “I was really disappointed that I couldn’t make my park a KOA the first time around. When I found out that a franchise was available, I jumped on it.”
The Albrechts have been deeply involved in the camping industry for decades. He’s a former president of the Virginia Campground Owners Association, and currently serves on the board of the National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (ARVC).
Staunton/Walnut Hills, Virginia KOA is located on an old southern plantation in the Shenandoah Valley. KOA said it’s so “full service” that it actually has an on-site massage therapy and wellness center staffed with a registered nurse and licensed massage therapist.
Other campgrounds joining the KOA system this year include:
• Acton/Los Angeles North, California KOA: This Soledad Canyon campground is surrounded by mountains and yet is just 10 minutes from Santa Clarita and no more than an hour from Universal Studios, Hollywood and the beach.
• Statesville East/Winston-Salem, North Carolina KOA: Set on 30 acres of rural countryside, the park is close to Lowes Motor Speedway, Carowinds Amusement Park and Lake Norman.
• Eagle River/Chain O’Lakes, Wisconsin KOA: The facility is set in the middle of Wisconsin’s Lake Country, with plenty of fishing and spectacular scenery.
• Northampton/Springfield, Massachusetts KOA: This is a great base camp for a visit to the Springfield area, just 30 minutes from Six Flags and the Basketball Hall of Fame.
• Madison/Shenandoah Hills, Virginia KOA: Located at the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains and a short drive to Shenandoah National Park.
• Logan/Hocking Hills, Ohio KOA: The facility features its own 75-foot mining sluice along with access to numerous trails, horseback riding, canoeing and rappelling.
• Pasco/Tri-Cities, Washington KOA: Stay at the confluence of the Snake, Yakima and Columbia rivers. There are 10 local golf courses and history buffs can check out Sacajawea State Park and view the same sites as Lewis and Clark.
• Camdenton/Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri KOA: You’ll be at the top of Lake of the Ozarks, but still just minutes from downtown Camdenton. There’s even a marina at the park, so bring your boat.
• Manistique, Michigan KOA: On Lake Michigan’s northern shore, this campground even has a remodeled 40-room inn with five Jacuzzi suites, a restaurant and indoor pool. The boardwalk is just two miles away, and it’s a great place for lighthouse lovers.
• Starbuck/Lyons Ferry Marina, Washington KOA: Here’s another KOA stop on the Lewis and Clark Trail, but it was home to Native Americans for thousands of years before that. The campground and marina are located at historic Lyons Ferry Crossing. And don’t miss the 200-foot waterfall on the Palouse River.
• McCall/North Fork Payette River, Idaho KOA: This KOA is in a beautiful setting and features a natural wood lodge that’s perfect for rallies and family reunions.
• Tulsa Northeast/Will Rogers Downs, Oklahoma KOA: Just 20 minutes from downtown Tulsa, this campground is steps away from the popular “racino” at Cherokee Casino Will Rogers Downs. The campground offer 400 RV pads and a huge group meeting facility.
• Durant/Choctaw, Oklahoma KOA: This brand new campground will be opening in the spring of 2009 and will eventually feature 150 extra-large, concrete, full-service pull through sites. Plans include a 100-seat meeting room with a full kitchen and plasma TV.
• Lava Hot Springs, Idaho KOA: This location is famous for it’s nearby, world-acclaimed hot pools. There’s the Portneuf River that flows right through the campground for fishing or floating, or take advantage of the Olympic complex, complete with diving platforms and water slides and even an indoor pool.