I’ve probably said it before, but running a family campground is like riding a roller coaster…no matter how you try and frame it, the truth is, life is all ups and downs…and as we close things out for the season, it’s like a slow descent in the chills of winter and a whole new rhythm of life.
To play catch up a bit, we had our seasonal dinner celebration after the Common Ground Fair. We shared salads, wine, lasagna, crusty bread and Irish jokes…in the rec hall of course. Becky and Doug won door prizes as the best story tellers and we sent Emma home with the rest of the wine to share with her Crazy Quilter group.
Unlike most parks, we have very few seasonal sites (maybe I should explain that in the campground world, “seasonal site” and “seasonal” refer to those guests who stay from May 15th to October 15th…the season). They generally leave their campers here from year to year and some have been with us for 10 years or more.
We’re rather picky about who we invite to stay seasonally for a couple of reasons. The first reason is that over time we embrace our seasonals as extended family. These folks are around for the ups and downs of daily life and let’s face it, when you’re in the public from 8 AM until 10 PM seven days a week, you live your life and your moods as though you were in a fishbowl. Our seasonals know what’s going on, set the tone of the park as much as we do and live in my heart like aunts, uncles and cousins. Their interesting lives produce a wealth of experience and I’m lucky to be able to turn to them when I need a different perspective or simple assurance when an unexpected challenge pops up. Moreover, they care enough to remind me if my priorities get out of whack.
The second reason we have only a few seasonal sites is that when we tour other parks, we notice that those with a high percentage of seasonals have a different feel than we are going for…we like the energy we get from the folks who come and stay for a week or two and are very excited to taste our world but equally eager to go home when their vacation is over.
But now their campers are closed down for the winter, we’ve shared our goodbyes and for the most part, we’ll be out of touch until Spring…