Becoming A Full Time RVer After Retirement

For us working stiffs, RVing in our new or used RV is largely a vacation thing. If you’re lucky enough to work on the Internet, you can go ahead and take off and go where you like when you like, but that’s simply not a realistic option for a lot of us. The dream of RVing full time isn’t so far-fetched on any retirement plan so long as you have an idea of how you’re going to make it work, and you’re willing to make the compromises that you need to make in order to stay on the road.

Keeping the House?

One of the big decisions that homeowners will have to make regarding retirement is whether or not to keep their home. The decision of whether or not you’re comfortable relying on an RV as your one and only home is a big one, but, there are other assets that will need to consider, as well. We need to expand this question to cover your car that you love, the boat, or that acre of land that you own. Selling off your assets might allow you to live like a King on the road, but it’s a total severance from the lifestyle that you lived while working, and not everyone is up for that. Weigh your options carefully and decide what you might want to keep (just in case) and what you might want to consider selling or giving away.

Adjusting to the Road Life

Being on the road all of the time can wear you down if you’re not ready for it. Before you decide whether or not you want to become a full time RVer in your golden years, take whatever vacation time you have and spend as much of it as you can in your RV so you can get a feel of what life on the road would be like.

Full time RVing isn’t for everyone, but if you feel that you are a true nomad at heart, then you may be ready to turn your hobby into your lifestyle.

Spending Valentine’s Day In A New RV

Valentine’s Day, February 14, is almost upon us, and what better way to get away from it all and get closer to your sweetheart than planning a romantic RV weekend in one of our amazing state parks! Just check the weather, make a reservation, put on some tunes, break out the chocolate, and it’s on!

Whether you’re specifically celebrating Valentine’s Day with your honey or just planning a much-needed getaway, Minnesota State Parks are great destinations. You can relax in the luxury of your Minnesota motorhome or travel trailer or head out for an adventurous day of skiing and snowshoeing followed by a yummy meal for two by the campfire! And if the RV is snugly stored for the winter, you can rent one of their camper cabins. Just be sure to check out the reservations page and book your room or site.

Before you head out, check out the forecast for the V-Day weekend and make sure you pack the appropriate clothing for the outdoor activities you have planned. (No comment on the indoor ones!) Then grab any equipment you might need, like extra blankets, an extra stove and fuel, and any sporting gear. Be sure your RV is prepared for the weather as well!

Then, put on some romantic music to set the mood for quality time under the stars. From Marvin Gaye to the calming sounds of the forest, there’s something for everyone.

And, no Valentine’s Day is complete without chocolate. Hershey’s has some very special recipes to share. How about the “Fudgy Chocolate Fondue” made in the Dutch oven? Or maybe just a steaming cup of hot chocolate?

Don’t be afraid to go overboard. After all, February 14 only comes around once a year!  What do you think is the most romantic spot in Minnesota? Let us know!

Best Minnesota RV Camping Destinations For The Whole Family

Minnesota RV camping can combine the greatest amenities with an the outdoor atmosphere to create a wonderful adventure for your entire family. Nestled throughout Minnesota are the best RV camping destinations that have a bit of something for those arriving in their RV in Minnesota. Check out these top spots and find the perfect place to park your RV.

Kiesler’s Campground and RV Resort

Located by Clear Lake, Kiesler’s Campground and RV Resort is a top-rated RV resort park that has so much to offer to the RV adventurer. The resort has high-class facilities and activities to keep you entertained for as long as you plan to stay there. Enjoy boating, fishing, hiking, biking, miniature golf, volleyball, basketball and a shuffleboard court. In the mood for some fun with the kids? Only minutes from the city of Waseca is the Waseca Water Park where you can romp in heated pools and water slides. If you don’t want to bothered by the hustle-and-bustle of other people, set up camp and just relax in the great outdoors.

Grand Casino Hinckley RV Resort

In Hinckley, MN rests a great RV park that is a campers paradise. Take your RV purchased from your PleasureLand RV Center and drive out to the Grand Casino Hinckley RV Resort. You have your choice from over 270 available spaces as you can visit the recreational facilities that has a game room, Rec hall, exercise room and sauna. Get your camping gear ready and gather as much firewood as you can to enjoy your camping experience. If you want to enjoy some civilization briefly, head down to the local casino and win it big.

Beaver Trails Jellystone Park and Resort

Don’t forget to make a special trip out to Austin to see the Beaver Trails Jellystone Park and Resort. This five-star resort park offers everything that an RV camper is looking for: plenty of parking pads, hookups for water and electricity, bike trails, hiking, fishing and boating. You can restock your supplies at the convenient RV grocery store as well as purchase firewood for the fire you will make to roast marshmallows. The kids can enjoy a variety of planned activities and have the opportunity to see Yogi Bear.

Go To Your Local RV Dealership 

With all the fun you can find throughout Minnesota, there really is no reason why you shouldn’t get an RV and enjoy the experience. See what these RV parks have to offer as you have a great camping trip.

 

Celebrate The Super Bowl In Your New RV

As the San Francisco 49’ers and the Baltimore Ravens make their way to New Orleans on February 3, are you starting to make your Super Bowl XLVII party plans? You’ve probably picked your favorite team, but here are the real questions: are you going to do a little tailgating in your Minnesota RV? And, what are you going to eat?

Super Bowl Sunday will be here before you know it, and these quick and easy delicious recipes can help you plan your RV menu in no time! Do you like your queso hot and spicy and made with no fuss? Just toss the Velveeta and Rotel in a crockpot, add some sautéed chorizo if you’re feeling adventurous, and your sports fans will love it.

Or how about some Dutch-oven nachos? Layer whatever ingredients you prefer, like shredded beef or chicken, cheese, jalapenos and black beans. Use 18 coals (arranged with half on top and half on bottom to reach 375 degrees) and cook for about 15 minutes.

Better have the guacamole handy, too! The Food Network has a recipe for what they describe as “the perfect guacamole.” [http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/food-network-kitchens/perfect-guacamole-recipe2/index.html] Start with a basic recipe and add your own twist.

Of course, there’s still the big game to actually watch in between all the munching, and you’ll want to show your spirit. If you’re a die-hard Vikings fan, shop the NFL cold weather gear and grab an official jersey or hoodie. You can also check out the Vikings season ticket options. It’s never too early to start hoping for a better season next year!

No matter who you’re pulling for, make Super Bowl Sunday a cozy and fun night spent with your RV family and friends!

A Minnesota RV Bucket List

It’s a brand new year and a wonderful time to imagine taking your Minnesota RV to all those amazing places you haven’t visited yet. You know, your travel bucket list! We think it’s time to dream big.

Frommer’s Guides have been excellent sources for all things travel for decades, and Frommer’s Exploring America by RV could be the kickstart you need for those next bucket list must-sees. This guide will give you all the info you need for that next scenic route, jaunt through the heartland or trek up the Al-Can, all from the vantage point of your RV. If you’re tastes run to the road less traveled, grab Off the Beaten Path: A Travel Guide to More Than 1000 Scenic and Interesting Places Still Uncrowded and Inviting. Sounds intriguing, right?

Starting locally, at the top of the list could be the renowned Guthrie Theater, the beautiful Split Rock Lighthouse or the Charles Lindbergh House. Or rediscover our state parks, like St. Croix or Great River Bluffs. Each one offers a unique experience for the whole family. If the spirit of exploration runs through your veins, check out 1,000 Places to See Before You Die, truly the last word in all the high notes of worldwide travel.

From the Grand Canyon to Route 66 to your favorite roadside attraction, what will make your RV travel bucket list?

Remember Pearl Harbor Day

If you like exploring American’s history in person, then hitch up your Minnesota RV and hit the road. December 7, 2012 will mark the 71st anniversary of the “date which will live in infamy,” the attack on Pearl Harbor in the early morning hours at the United States naval base in Hawaii so long ago. The attack by Japan resulted in the destruction of 188 U.S. aircraft, the loss of 2,402 Americans and 1,282 wounded. And of course caused the entrance of the United States into World War II.  And while RV trips to Hawaii may not be practical, we can honor the service of those who served in World War II with visits to memorials and museums across the nation. There’s an array of online tools to bring history to life and help you plan your trip.

When you hit the road, you may want to check out the National WWII Museum in New Orleans. Founded by historian and author, Stephen Ambrose, the Museum tells the story of the war that literally changed the world. Or if your route crosses through the northeast, then plan to visit the U.S. National World War II Memorial in Washington, DC. Flanked by the Washington Monument to the east and the Lincoln Memorial to the west, this monument is truly a lasting edifice to all those who served in the armed forces and as civilians.

Did you know that more than 326,000 Minnesotans of all races and religions served in the U.S. armed
forces during World War II? And more than 6,000 gave their lives. Learn more and honor that service with a visit to the World War II Memorial at the Minnesota State Capitol.

Americans have an intriguing history. Have a great time exploring it on the road!

Minnesota RVers: What Would You Do If You Saw A Bat?

Halloween is coming. And even though we have a blast camping out in the our new Minnesota motorhomes, carving pumpkins and dressing up as ghosts and goblins, it’s also a tough time of year for batty public relations. We thought this would be a great time to set the record straight with a few fun facts about bats from Bat Conservation International:

  • Centuries of myths and misinformation still generate needless fears and threaten bats and their habitats around the world.
  • The more than 1,200 species of bats. They range from the world’s smallest mammal, the tiny bumblebee bat that weighs less than a penny to giant flyig foxes with six-foot wingspans.
  • A single little brown bat can eat up to 1,000 mosquito-sized insects in a single hour, while a pregnant or lactating female bat typically eats the equivalent of her entire body weight in insects each night.
  • Almost a third of the world’s bats feed on the fruit or nectar of plants. In return for their meals, these bats are vital pollinators of countless plants (many of great economic value) and essential seed dispersers with a major role in regenerating rainforests.
  • About 1 percent of bats eat fish, mice, frogs or other small vertebrates.
  • Only three species, all in Latin America, are vampires. They really do feed on blood, although they lap it like kittens rather than sucking it up as horror movies suggest. Even the vampires are useful: an enzyme in their saliva is among the most potent blood-clot dissolvers known and is used to treat human stroke victims.

Minnesota has seven species of bats, and Wildlife Rehabilitation & Release, Inc. says that while some of our bats migrate south for the winter, others hibernate in caves, abandoned mines and buildings.  Two species include the gorgeous silver-haired bat, which lives in forests and has dark fur with silver streaks, and the red bat, which often hangs from its tree roosts by one foot, mimicking an autumn leaf.

This Halloween, help spread the word! Bats are not what you’ve seen in horror movies. Bats are the good guys!

Taking Your Pleasureland RV To The Flea Market

Chances are, any time you’re on the road with your new or used Minnesota RV, there’s a flea market nearby. What’s your favorite treasure? From collectible Scooby-Doo lunch buckets to velvet Elvis paintings, America’s flea markets have it all.

Kathy Johnson, who owns Pieces of the Past in Johnson City, Texas, is a flea market pro. She travels to flea markets all across the south in search of the perfect architectural antiques for her clients. “I tell people that the best way to plan your flea market road trip is to get that RV up and running,” says Kathy. “It’ll give you more room to carry your treasures! It’ll also give you a place to go when you’re tired, confused, hungry, or annoyed at the “sold” sign on that special something you wanted.”

Where will you begin your flea market adventure? The Travel Channel put together a list of what it considers the world’s best. The most intriguing one for those of us traveling in our Minnesota motorhomes is likely the 127 Corridor, which runs from Gadsden, Alabama all the way to Jamestown, Tennessee. For three weeks every August, more than 2,000 vendors line the road and welcome the adventurous shoppers.

The Hamel Lions Flea Market, here in Minnesota, is just west of Minneapolis and tops the CBS list of best flea markets.  Check out the other listings for even more flea markets here in Minnesota, or visit American Fleas to start planning your ultimate flea market road trip. While almost any flea market can help you add to your favorite collections, some also offer some great foods and local music while you shop. Let us know if you find a good one!

 

What’s your favorite flea market? What your best flea market find?

Minnesota RV Hobbies: Bird Watching

Some birders are hard core. They’ll jump on a plane in a heartbeat at the mere hint of an opportunity to check one more bird off their life list. Others are more relaxed, content with the birds of any feather that happen to flock to their own backyard. No matter which type of birder you are, fall is prime time for birding. And when you’re traveling in your Minnesota RV this fall, you can discover even more gorgeous and unusual species, including migratory birds.

If you’re in the mood for motorhome road trip, check out these 8 Great Places suggested by the National Wildlife Federation.  From the Sunrise Coast in Maine to the Sky Islands of Arizona, these are places recommended by some of the top birders in the nation.

And, if you’re looking for an RV excursion a little closer to home, Minnesota is home to a wide variety of birds – from bald eagles to sandhill cranes. One great opportunity for bird watching is the Pine to Prairie Birding Trail, which is Minnesota’s first International trail. Located in northwestern Minnesota, the 200-mile-long trail includes 45 sites for bird watching and is home to 275 species of birds. How many will you find in your new Minnesota travel trailer or motorhome?

Minnesota RVing Storytelling

Although you may be spending the night in your Pleasureland RV, a big part of the camping experience is the campfire. And storytelling by the campfire is an art form all its own.

First: the campfire. You’ll need four things: tinder, kindling, firewood, and a match.

Tinder lights easily, and can be anything from dried grasses or moss, to lint from your dryer or a packaged fire starter. Kindling provides fuel for the fire, and can include dried twigs or strips of cardboard. Firewood, including split and whole logs, will keep the roaring fire burning.  (Safety reminder: keep a bucket of water handy any time you have a campfire. Stray embers can easily start a forest fire!)

Start by creating a pile of tinder and kindling in the fire pit. You’ll want it piled together loosely enough for air to circulate, but closely enough for the flames to easily spread. Light the tinder with a match or lighter. Then, as the fire grows, add small pieces of firewood until the fire becomes hot enough to burn the larger logs. Add the wood in a star pattern, propping one log on the other to encourage air circulation and keeping the fire going.

Now, you’ve got a roaring campfire and it’s time for a round of storytelling! There’s something about the warm glow of a campfire that brings out our funniest family stories and scariest ghost stories. Who’s the best storyteller in your family?

This month, the Master Storytelling Festival in the Twin Cities features artists from  the Black Storytellers Alliance, and you can find more festivals all over the U.S. on the storytelling festivals page. It’s a great time to hitch up the your St. Cloud RV and go discover a long-lost slice of Americana!