We are Sam and Kim Wilkins and we are retired full time RVers in search of 70 degree weather. Our home is now a 42-foot fifth wheel.
We sold our home and most of our belongings in order to see what this great United States has to offer by way of beautiful scenery. Along the way we have met some of the nicest people. So much has happened since our last article. We left WV heading to Goshen Indiana to attend the National Rally for Grand Design, which is the company that makes our RV. Goshen is just down the road from Elkhart IN, the town known for manufacturing 83% of all RVs in the world. This area is right in the middle of Amish country, in fact Grand Design in Elkhart employs 2700 people and 50% of them are Amish. They have several instances where three generations of Amish families work together there.
In Elkhart there is an RV and Mobile Home Museum that houses many examples of RVs as they have evolved over the years. They have “The oldest travel trailer in the world”, a 1913 “Earl” Travel Trailer and Model “T” Ford displayed. They also have the smallest Airstream ever built. It was pure sensory overload for Sam and I as we saw some very fine examples of how camping was done many years ago and just how very much it has changed over the years. They also had some examples of mobile homes and how they have also advanced. Some of the examples brought back fond memories of when we were young and lived in similar mobile homes. We recommend visiting this museum if you’re ever in IN.
When we arrived in Goshen we were greeted with a huge bag of swag from Grand Design. The “Wagon Masters” of the section we were staying in organized a dinner, tacos with all the toppings and a table full of desserts. We took that opportunity to meet others, some full time RVers like us and others who were weekend warriors. We had lots of stories to share. Our site was in the center of a horse track so we were able to see them train.
At the start of the rally, with over 550 campers in attendance, there were lots of seminars teaching us all about our home and how to take care of it. Some gave preventive information and others gave details on how to correct issues that may arise. We were fed breakfast and dinner every day, quite delectable. We were treated to a tour of the factory that builds our model of RV, Solitude, and learned just how well it is done. We were so impressed and learned so much.
We were promised three fixes on our home that GD does at every national rally but they went above and beyond, they inspected and fixed several other items that were not even on our list. Their motto is “We strive for nothing less than customers for life”, we feel they have outdone themselves and couldn’t be more pleased.
On our way back home to WV we stopped in Bedford PA to visit some friends we winter with in FL, we always have such a good time with them.
Now that we are back in WV we were able to attend our grandson, Matthew’s, 16th birthday party. We also attended Broadway Baptist’s Homecoming this past Sunday celebrating 130 years. We give thanks every day for the blessings of family, friends and a church family where we can come together and worship. We hope you have this kind of support. If not, come join us. Sunday School is from 9:30 to 10:30 and worship is 10:30 to 11:30. We would love to have you.