The Pennsylvania RV & Camping Association (PRVCA) announced a change in venue for next year’s annual Pennsylvania RV and Camping Show.
The event, which has become the largest trade-retail show in the nation, will move from the State Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg to the Hershey Giant Center, part of the Hersheypark Sport and Entertainment Complex.
During this year’s event in September, PRVCA Executive Vice President Rebecca Lennington said she put the question of moving the show to Hershey in an August survey of exhibitors and received an overwhelming affirmative response.
“The growth at the Giant Center basically is unlimited,” she said.
According to PRVCA, the Harrisburg complex has always been hard to navigate for consumers.
“Hershey does not have a bad location on its premises,” PRVCA Show and Board Chairman Dan Saltzgive noted.
Another major reason for the move was the constant threat of flooding at the Farm Show Complex. Just one week after the September show, tropical storm Ivan dumped several feet of water in the area, causing the banks of the nearby Susquehanna River to overflow as well as area streams and creeks.
According to the PRVCA, the Farm Show’s outer parking lots and internal halls were covered with over a foot of water.
“This could have been a super disaster for the RV and Camping Show,” Saltzgiver said. “All of our units outdoors would have been completely totaled.
“Flooding is a very real concern of ours and we have no other choice than to move to Hershey. We need to look out for our association members and do what is best for them.”
Lenington also cited the fee increases that the Farm Show was planning to implement as another factor behind the decision.
“We could no longer justify the costs to our members.”
The Patriot News reported, the Farm Show Commission voted in June to set a flat rent of 5 cents per square foot per day for all users of the complex, effective July 1, 2005, resulting in a 29% rent increase for the PRVCA event.
The 37th Annual Pennsylvania RV and Camping Show will be held Sept. 14-18, 2005.