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McPhersonSentinel - McPherson, KS
  • Local campers weigh in on pros and cons of RV ownership

  • While many families struggle to provide family vacations to theme parks, tropical islands or even international travel, several McPherson residents are staying local in their vacation travels.
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    • Things to consider before buying an RV
      Things to consider before buying an RV
      What is your price range?
      How often will camper be used? Vacations or full-time? All seasons or summers only?
      How many sleepers? ...
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      Things to consider before buying an RV
      Things to consider before buying an RV

      What is your price range?

      How often will camper be used? Vacations or full-time? All seasons or summers only?

      How many sleepers?

      What vehicle do you have to transport the unit?

      How far/often do you plan to travel?

      How spoiled are you? Do you need all of the luxuries?

      What type of floor plan is preferred?
  • While many families struggle to provide family vacations to theme parks, tropical islands or even international travel, several McPherson residents are staying local in their vacation travels.
    “We enjoy camping because it is like a bunch of mini vacations all summer long,” said Stephanie Walker, RV owner and McPherson resident, said.
    Walker said she loves owning a camper.
    “It is mobile, and it gives us lots of options on where to go,” she said.
    “We can leave our camping supplies in the camper, which makes packing easy, and our camper is air conditioned!”
    Walker said her husband does all of the cooking when they camp.
    “Food tastes much better when cooked outdoors. We camp with a group of friends and have been blessed by time spent together.”
    Local resident Sarah Boese also enjoys camping with her family during the summer months.
    “Camping is very affordable for large families. We love camping at Kanopolis because we enjoy camping with others,” she said. “Their set up works for our group.
    “It is a close distance from our house, not too far, however. We have only camped in Kansas, but we would love to adventure out of state.”
    Rhonda Stucky, local resident and RV owner, grew up going to the lake every other weekend during the summer.
    “We love owning a camper. It was an investment, and it will definitely replace a few traditional vacations,” she said, “but our boys love it.
    “The best thing about camping is the focused family time. At home there are tons of distractions. Going away for the weekend is time centered with your kids.”
    Walker said RV ownership comes with a few negatives.
    “The downside for us is storage,” she said. “We do not have room at our home to store our camper, so we rent a storage spot”
    Walker said camping is not free. Food, fuel and camping fees should be considered. In total, the Walkers spend anywhere from $150-$200 a weekend. This includes lodging, entertainment, fees, fuel and meals.
    Camping with Kansas weather can be rather iffy, and there is a lot of time spent in set up and tear down, Stucky said.
    Clean up also can involve some effort.
    “A husband is a must for a camper,” Boese said. “I would never clean out the black tank, aka the sewer.”
    Mike Lacy, owner of Lacy RV Ranch on East Kansas Street in McPherson, said he liked to refer to his camper as his home on the road.
    “My customers value most the family time, freedom and memories created and people that they meet while on vacation,” he said. “Many make friends at a particular park and go back to that same park year after year to be with those friends.”
    Page 2 of 2 - When buying a camper, consumers can be as economical as they want to be, Lacy said, or the sky is the limit in what you can spend.
    “Of all of the campers I sell, the fifth wheel has been consistently the most popular among customers,” he said. “It is good for towing in the wind, has more storage and can come with multiple floor plans.
    “I have customers who use their RVs to travel the United States for flea markets. Some travel in them to national rallies. Others use them in the summer at local lakes. Some even live in them year round. There are several contractors in the area living in RVs while they work.”
    Lacy’s advice to potential customers is to take your kids camping while they are young.
    “Once they get to be teenagers, they aren’t interested in camping.”
    Walker said her camper is older and was very inexpensive.
    “There are lots of cool old campers. I enjoyed redecorating our used camper and making it my own,” she said. “Don’t feel that you have to buy a camper that is nicer than your house.
    “Camping is about being outside.”

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