THE GOSHEN NEWS
ELKHART — The first-ever “RV Industry Power Breakfast” featuring a slate of local and national speakers is set for next month in Elkhart.
The event is designed to bring together key elements of the U.S. recreation vehicle industry with an array of industry representatives and local civic leaders. The gathering is scheduled for May 9 at the Northern Indiana Event Center and RV/MH Hall of Fame in Elkhart, according to RVBusiness magazine.
The inaugural Power Breakfast, kicking off with a 7 a.m. buffet and 7:45 a.m. program, is facilitated by Elkhart-based RVBusiness and sponsored by Dicor Corp., Dometic Corp., the Economic Development Corp. of Elkhart County, Forest River Inc., GE Capital, Kampgrounds of America Inc., Spartan Motors Inc. and Thor Industries Inc.
According to event organizers, the “Power Breakfast” comes at a time when RV builders and suppliers are doing fairly well in terms of national retail sales and wholesale shipments. An 85 percent of national shipments are now centered around northern Indiana’s Elkhart and LaGrange counties and an array of local communities including Goshen, LaGrange, Middlebury, Bristol, Wakarusa and Nappanee.
“Officials from these towns are being personally invited to the event, as are representatives of relevant trade associations like Reston, Va.-based Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA), Fairfax, Va.-based RV Dealers Association (RVDA) and the Recreation Vehicle Indiana Council (RVIC) in Indianapolis,” said BJ Thompson, president of BJ Thompson Associates in Elkhart and chairman of RVIA’s Public Relations Committee. Thompson is coordinating the inaugural Power Breakfast for RVBusiness.
According to RVB Publisher Sherman Goldenberg, “There was, speaking on behalf of the RVBusiness staff, a sense that we could all do a better job at times of working together as a cohesive force here in Elkhart to showcase the power and job-building potential of the U.S. RV industry and, at the same time, bring to Elkhart some of the general and industry-specific intelligence that exists in the current economic climate for area industry people to absorb.”
Dicor President Gregg Fore and Forest River General Manager Doug Gaeddert, immediate past chairman and current chairman of RVIA respectively, will share MC duties during the morning event. A slate of speakers will be featured, and also planned is a short teleconference with U.S. Sen. Joe Donnelly if the first-term senator from Indiana is available with Congress in session.
Two anchor presentations are planned: In the first half, RVIA President Richard Coon, RVIA Vice President of Public Relations & Advertising James Ashurst and RVIA Vice President of Administration Mac Bryan will provide an overview of the industry’s 2012 status and a quick look at 2013’s opportunities and challenges.
In the second half, KOA Chief Executive Officer Jim Rogers will share feedback from campers who annually visit Montana-based KOA’s 489 U.S. and Canadian parks.