The Benefits of Using an RV for Movie Production

With full kitchens, comfortable beds, well-equipped bathrooms, and plenty of seating, it’s accurate to say that RVs are not just for camping anymore! All kinds of RVs, from travel trailers and fifth wheels to toy haulers and park trailers, can be put to good use whenever the comforts and conveniences of home are needed. And one such example is movie production! The concept and design of an RV is perfect for taking care of a movie production cast and crew in so many ways. Let’s look at the many benefits of using an RV for making a movie. 

Complete Mobility

One feature that an RV offers that no other stick-and-brick building can is its 24/7 mobility. And for movie production, this can be invaluable. As your shooting location changes, it’s easy to just retract the awning and slides, close up shop, and hit the road to keep your production rolling. This means less set up and break down time and more time making your movie. 

Hair & Makeup

The bathroom inside an RV can easily be modified to meet the needs of stars who need to get gussied up before stepping in front of the camera. Many newer RVs are already equipped with LED lighting which is preferable over bright, harsh lighting when it comes to applying makeup. But if it isn’t, it’s easy to replace dreaded fluorescent lighting with 75 or 100-watt LED bulbs. And a trick you’ll often see in movie star dressing rooms that can be done in an RV is surrounding the mirror in LED lights, instead of just having a few lights over the mirror. This helps create even lighting for makeup application. RV bathroom skylights also do wonders for makeup time. They deliver coveted natural light for the best scenario when applying makeup. Set up a comfortable, folding director’s style chair and it’s ready for a star! 

Wardrobe & Dressing Room

Hanging rods and privacy—two things necessary for a star’s wardrobe and dressing room. An RV master suite is the perfect place to set up a wardrobe and dressing area since many have built-in wardrobes with hanging rods, shelves, and even shoe racks. Most wardrobes are designed with mirrored doors as well, so stars can easily make sure they’re camera-ready before stepping out. If the bed is in the way and not needed, it can be removed and the area can be turned into a spacious dressing room instead. 

Lounging Area

Whether an RV has a front, rear, or central living area, there’ll be comfortable seating for anyone involved in movie making. RVs often feature opposing sofas, theater seating, and/or recliners where actors or crew members can take a load off after shooting is done for the day (or between takes). Trailers with living room slide outs feel roomy and spacious, leaving no room for complaining from high-maintenance stars. Outdoor patio awnings create great shaded space so everyone can enjoy fresh air without the sun. This is the ideal place to throw down a rug, set up chairs and a snack table, and put out some refreshments for ultimate relaxation. If the RV is equipped with an outdoor camp kitchen, cold drinks are never far away when kicking back on the patio. Toss a few burgers or kabobs on the outdoor grill and you have the makings of the perfect after-work evening at the RV. 

Catering

Even movie stars need to eat—even if it is just celery and water. An RV kitchen has everything needed to either make food onboard or set out food that is delivered by a catering company. The countertops and dinette offer a place to set out trays of meat, cheeses, crackers, veggies, and more. And with a residential-style refrigerator, you can load it up with sparkling water, sodas, juices, teas, etc. Setting up a fancy one-cup coffee maker (very important!) is a cinch with multiple power outlets and plenty of countertop space. Abundant cupboards and drawers give you plenty of room for dishes, glasses, and utensils if you choose to use the real stuff. Some RVs are even equipped with dishwashers (but then someone has to load and unload it). 

Rear Ramp Door

Toy hauler RVs are unique because they are equipped with a rear ramp door that makes loading and unloading of larger equipment effortless. This can come in handy for transporting large spotlights, scenery, rolling racks of clothing/costumes, props, and more. The door opens to reveal a large utility area that is normally loaded with ATVs, kayaks, dune buggies, and other outdoor toys for camping. But when used as a movie production HQ, this rear cargo area is perfect for a wardrobe/dressing room, production office, dining area, living room, and more. Outfit it with tables, sofas, a TV, hanging rods for clothes, a steamer, even beds for additional sleeping accommodations. Toy haulers can have garages from 9-14 feet long and can be as basic or as equipped as you need. From a small garage with just rubber flooring to a large room with a bathroom, full entertainment center, built-in sofas, and electric queen beds, a toy hauler might just be the perfect choice for a movie production RV. 

Production Office

For all the behind-the-scenes stuff, like reviewing and editing film, making calls, filling out paperwork, meetings, and other fun stuff like that, an RV comes through once again! Create an office space in the living room or at the dinette by setting up a computer, copier, and any other equipment needed to make things run smoothly. RVs are equipped with A/C units and furnaces, so you’ll be plenty comfortable while spending time in your mobile movie production studio. 

RVs aren’t just for camping anymore! It’s easy to transform the inside into a movie production HQ so you can have totally mobile and completely comfortable accommodations while filming! If you’ve modified your RV into a mobile movie HQ, share photos of it with us on our Facebook or Instagram pages for inspiration!  

RV Window Hacks That Help You Stay Warm

If you’re a cold-weather camper, then you know the benefits that come with braving the chilly temps in your RV: no crowds, beautiful scenery, wildlife sightings, winter sports like snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. On the flip side, you also have to endure bone-chilling nights where your RV might feel more like a freezer-on-wheels than a cozy home-away-from-home. Your RV has a few areas where heat leaks out, and today we’re going to look at one of the biggest culprits: the windows! Luckily you have options when it comes to insulating your RV windows so that you’re not heating the great outdoors. Take a look at these RV window hacks that’ll help you stay warm and choose one to try this winter as you embark on an awesome cold-weather RV adventure!

Sew Crafty!

If you’re crafty, then this first option is definitely for you! Head to your favorite craft or fabric store and choose a heavy material that’ll be perfect for insulating your RV windows. Depending on how technical or fancy you want to get, there is a curtain pattern for you. A simple online search will yield literally thousands of different ideas, some non-sew patterns taking under an hour, and some taking much longer. How you attach them to the windows is also up for debate: curtain rods, snaps, Velcro®? Or maybe you’ll come up with a unique solution all your own. No matter which you choose, just be sure to purchase a fabric thick enough to keep the heat in and the cold winter winds out.

Seal It Up!

This way of insulating your RV windows doesn’t add any decorative flair to your RV like curtains do, but it also doesn’t obstruct your view. A simple and inexpensive way to create a barrier between the chilly outdoors and your cozy indoors is by applying a layer of plastic to your windows. With this method, you’re literally shrink wrapping your windows. Purchase a window insulator kit from your local hardware store, grab a hair dryer and an X-acto knife, and you’re ready to go! Mount the double-sided tape from the kit around the perimeter of each window (do one window at a time). For each window you will cut the plastic wrap so that it extends about two inches beyond the window on each side. To apply the wrap, start with the top of the window, pressing it onto the strip of tape. Work your way down the window by pressing the side of the wrap to the side tape, making sure you’re pulling it tightly as you go down (so that it resembles a pane of glass). Use your hair dryer on the high heat setting to blow out the wrinkles from the top down. Be careful not to get too close the plastic with the hair dryer, as this can melt or burn it. Once done, trim the plastic edges to your liking.

 Foiled Again!

While the shrink wrap can be applied and left up all winter without impeding your view of the beautiful wintry-white scenery right outside your RV’s door, this next method isn’t quite as see-through. But it sure does work! And when the winds are whipping relentlessly against your RV, that’s all you’re going to care about. Put the shrink wrap back on the shelf and grab some double-reflective Reflectix instead. This 7-layer reflective insulation product can easily be cut to fit every window and can be put up and removed whenever you need it. Using a newspaper as a template, cut the newspaper to the size of your windows, adding about 2 inches on each side so that it stretches beyond the window. Then cut the Reflectix to match the newspaper templates for each window. A good way to secure Reflectix in your windows is with Velcro. You can either add Velcro strips that span the entire length of each side of the windows, or you can put smaller strips on each corner where the Reflectix can attach. Once up, the polyethylene bubble wrap that is encased between the foil will help keep heat from escaping and cold from infiltrating. By attaching it with Velcro, it’ll be easy to put up and easy to take down whenever needed.

Have you come up with your own unique solution for insulating your RV windows and want to share it with us and our readers? Here at Gillette’s Interstate RV in Lansing, MI, we’re always looking for helpful RV tips and tricks! Share your cool idea below in the comments!

Windsurfing: When Surfing and Sailing Collide!

Looking to try something new this summer? Pack up the RV and hit the beach! Windsurfing, also know as sailboarding, is an awesome result that happens when surfing and sailing collide. With our beautiful Great Lakes, thousands of inland lakes, and miles of rivers, Pure Michigan is a great place to learn the awesome sport of windsurfing!

What Is Windsurfing?

Windsurfing is an awesome blend of surfing and sailing, where typically a single rider uses the speed and direction of the wind to propel a surfboard-like vessel across the water using a sail. Windsurfers can use rivers, lakes, and, of course, the ocean for this extreme board sport, and can surf in any conditions from smooth waters to some pretty intense waves. Although it takes a little knowhow and skill, it’s not too terribly difficult for beginners to pick this sport up, and it is even so widely regarded that it’s recognized as a competitive sport.

History of Windsurfing

Riding the waves on a surfboard with a sail attached to it sounds like a totally modern invention, but this awesome sport has some deeply rooted significance. Polynesians have been windsurfing for hundreds of years as a means of transportation. Although their rigs and boards looked vastly different than the ones we see today, it’s still awesome to think of Polynesian ancestors zooming along the waves! It’s even the basis of Disney’s recent film Moana.

Aside from its ancient origins, windsurfing was modernized in the 1960s, and began to gain traction from there. Its spike in popularity led from it being an enjoyable leisure sport to a full blown competitive sport that thrill seekers still partake in today. Is it the sport for you?

Learning How To Windsurf

As previously mentioned, despite popular belief, it’s not radically difficult to learn how to windsurf! The key is getting the right information and good instruction. If you’re wondering if windsurfing is right for you, take into consideration that windsurfers should have a good sense of balance, and be able to learn basic sailing theory. From there, it just takes good instruction and practice. Beginners should learn on fairly calm waters on days when the wind is around five knots, with a small sail, and a wide, dense board with a large volume for stability.

Choosing a Board

Because there are so many activities stemming off windsurfing, there are several different types of boards to choose from for a variety of needs from leisurely gliding to competitive racing. As a beginner, you’ll want to choose a beginner board. These are wide and dense in volume to provide newbies with appreciated stability. Freeride boards are designed for cruising recreationally on calm, flat waters in a straight line. Unless you have partaken in other board sports before, you will probably want to seek out these two types of boards to start off with.

Competitive Windsurfing

Windsurfing has become so popular that not only have countless clubs and societies cropped up for windsurfing enthusiasts, but it’s become a widely recognized competitive sport with competitions all over the world. It even features events in the Olympic Games!

There are plenty of different types of events in competitive windsurfing, from more traditional slalom races and formula events, to course racing, superX, and freestyle! Windsurfing at the Olympics consists of different races in varying wind conditions, making it a challenge even for professionals!

Where To Go Windsurfing In Michigan

As the Great Lakes State, Michigan features thousands of lakes that are perfect for windsurfing! Here are just a few of the countless incredible destinations for windsurfing. Be sure to explore and try out this sweet sport on other Michigan lakes as well.

Higgins Lake

Higgins Lake, with its calm waters, is a great spot for learning how to windsurf! It has been the host to various windsurfing events throughout the years, so you know it’s a good spot for this awesome sport!

Torch Lake

Not only is a trip up north to beautiful Bellaire always a treat, but visiting gorgeous Torch Lake to try windsurfing is a must! Torch Lake Windsurfing offers great lessons for beginners, complete with an on-land simulator and instruction by a certified instructor! If you’re already an experienced windsurfer, they offer rentals too so you can hit the water!

Grand Haven

You’ll see all kinds of board sports enthusiasts out on the water in Grand Haven, and the beautiful stretches of water on Lake Michigan, channels, and nearby inland lakes make this a great destination for windsurfers!

What do you think of windsurfing? This blend of surfing and sailing is even great for kids as young as five years old! Get out there and give it a shot! If you need an RV that can carry all your boards, sails, and other equipment, we have awesome toy haulers for sale in East Lansing right here at Gillette’s Interstate RV!

Leave us a comment with your favorite spots to go windsurfing, if you’re excited to give it a try, or even if you’re just excited to watch someone else try it out!

Make a Family Time Capsule From Your Many Trips

You know all that stuff you collect along the way on your trips? The stuff you want to take home so you have something to look at when you’re reminiscing about your fun vacations, such as pretty seashells, cool rocks, neat-looking pinecones, etc.? If you’re a parent, you have undoubtedly looked at items your kids have picked up along the way and thought, What in the world are we going to do with these? You can’t throw them away, because every piece holds a special meaning to your kids, but you can’t really display everything either. We have the perfect solution! Why not make a family time capsule and fill it with vacation mementos? Your problem is solved–you don’t have to throw anything away, and it’s all stored out of sight, making clutter a non-issue. Let’s look at how to create a family time capsule that you can enjoy years down the road!

Find a Location

The first thing you need to decide is if you’ll bury the time capsule or just stash it somewhere inside. Not every time capsule needs to be buried, especially if you’re a full-time RVer and don’t have your own land on which to bury it. If you dig a hole out at a random place, you run the risk of not being able to find it again later, or that someone else will stumble across it and ruin it. So if you’re going to bury it, make sure it’s somewhere safe and that you won’t forget where that safe place is. If you aren’t going to bury it, you just need to find a place such as in the back of the closet, shoved to the farthest reaches of the pass-thru storage in your RV, or some other place where it’s out of the way.

What To Put It In

What you will use to put your stuff in will depend on a few things. First of all, if you’re going to bury it, you need to make sure that the capsule will be able to withstand moisture and insects. If you run out and bury a shoebox, you’ll most likely find all your stuff ruined when you dig it up. If you’re storing it indoors, your options are much more flexible.

The second thing you need to think about when picking a container is the size of the things you plan to put in it. If all you have are small things, then something the size of a shoebox will work great. However if you plan to pack up larger souvenirs, then that size probably won’t cut it!

Finally, decide if you’re going to gather up your current items and lock them away, or if you’re going to want to add to it as you go. If you plan to seal it up and not open it again until it’s time to reminisce, then you can put it in something that seals permanently and has to be broken open when the time comes. If you want to be able to add to it, then you obviously want something you can open and close.

Differentiating Your Items

If you’ve picked up a lot of random stuff along the way that may not be easy to recognize years from now, there’s a fun way to mark them so that you’re not scratching your head and asking yourself, Where is this from! All you have to do is have everyone on the trip pose in a location that’s recognizable (such as in front of a national park sign) and take a picture. Print that photo and place it in a Ziploc bag along with the trinkets you’ve picked up! It works best if you either write the date on the bag or make sure the photo is time stamped. If you can’t find a place that will spark the memory of where you were, just write it on the bag or on the back of the photo.

When To Open It

When to open up your time capsule is completely up to you! If you’re keeping it for a young child, you can give it to him on his 18th or 21st birthday as a gift, or even as a wedding gift when he gets married. Other options are to pick a date, such as 20 years from the date you seal it up. If it’s one you want to add to often and look at over and over, you can get it out whenever you want. There will be something new each time you open it!

What will you put in your travel time capsule? Let us know in the comments below!

Throwing the Ultimate New Year’s Eve Party In Your RV

New Year’s Eve is a night to cap off the current year and ring in the new one with close friends, good food, and plenty of fun festivities. Contrary to what some might say, you don’t need a ton of space to throw a terrific party, all you need is terrific planning. So if you want to host a New Year’s Eve shindig in your rig this year, you’ve come to the right place. Here’s everything you need to know about throwing the ultimate New Year’s Eve party in your RV!

The Planning Process

The best parties begin taking shape weeks in advance. You’ll want to give your guests ample notice before the big night or they might commit to other plans before they even hear about your awesome RV party. If your RV is parked at a campground or even in your driveway, polite etiquette suggests that you inform your nearby neighbors of the event so they are aware of the potential for late-night noise. Start your party around 9pm, which will give your guests plenty of time to meet and mingle before the ball drops. In addition to the time, inform your guests of your chosen theme so that they can attend accordingly.

Picking a Theme

Having a solid theme establishes the overall atmosphere of the party, and when it comes to New Year’s Eve, your options are virtually endless. Choosing a great theme provides the foundation for how you will decorate, what you will serve, and how your guests will dress. Here are just four possible theme ideas for a New Year’s Eve RV party: Dusky Speakeasy Soiree – Invite your guests to dress up as flappers and pinstripe-suited mobsters. Dim the lights, let some slow jazz play in the background, and party like the prohibitionists aren’t watching. Black and White Cocktail Party – Keep it classy and make your party a black-and-white affair by inviting guests to wear casual penguin suits and their most favorite little black dresses. Color-coordinate your decorations accordingly. Glitter and Sparkle Celebration – Invite your guests to shower themselves in glitter by wearing shimmering attire and their most bedazzled accessories. Cover your RV with shiny confetti before they arrive. Last Big-Hurrah Bash – Throw a rager that leaves your guests ready to take on their New Year resolutions by inviting them to indulge in all the vices they plan to give up come January 1st. You can all talk about your upcoming diet plans as you congregate by the donut bar and French fry platter.

The Food Menu

Because New Year’s Eve parties typically start later in the evening, most of your guests will probably have already eaten dinner before arriving, so serve small appetizer-type foods and snacks to nibble on throughout the night. Think dips, cheese and crackers, veggie trays, easy crockpot meatballs, or BBQ chicken bites. For dessert, stick with finger foods like chocolate-covered pretzels, cheesecake bites, or these delicious popcorn s’mores balls. *Tip* – Introduce a new hot dish mid-party to reinvigorate your guests and restore interest in the food selection. Go for oven-cooked foods like spinach artichoke-stuffed mushrooms or bacon-wrapped cocktail weenies. Get them cooking before your guests arrive and keep them warm in your RV oven until you’re ready to unveil them.

The Drink Selection

Have a signature drink for the party that goes along with your chosen theme. Let your guests know what that drink will be, and invite them to bring their own beverage if they don’t like what’s being served. You’ll also want to have a non-alcoholic drink option available for guests who wish to spend the night sober. Here are just a few ideas for drink selections, according to the themes previously identified:

  • Dusky Speakeasy Soiree – Old Fashioneds
  • Black and White Cocktail Party – White Russians and Black Russians
  • Glitter and Sparkle Celebration – Fruity Sangria
  • Last Big-Hurrah Bash – Sorbet Champagne Floats

The Logistics

Don’t just focus on the fun parts of party planning, think about the specific logistics too. Consider the size of your RV and how you can make the most of your limited space. Rearrange the furniture and temporarily relocate items to make room for more seating and standing space. Spread out the appetizers, desserts, and drinks to create a flow so that your guests don’t crowd one area. If you need more countertop space, place a plywood board on top of your dinette table to make a bigger surface for displaying foods. Cover the plywood and your countertops with tablecloths for an easy cleanup the next morning. Lastly, keep your bedroom clean and accessible to give your guests a place to put their coats and bags.

The Atmosphere

The mood of your New Year’s Eve RV party will largely be dependent upon the theme you choose, but there are some other components to creating a great party atmosphere. Have music playing in the background so it can be heard without it inhibiting your guests’ ability to converse with each other. When it comes to decorations, less is more. Because your RV is compact, you don’t want to take up space with unnecessary adornments. Let your guests’ attire and your provided party accessories establish the atmosphere of the room. These provided accessories can include New Year’s Eve hats/tiaras, noisemakers, or masquerade masks.

The Activities

Have some activities planned to keep your guests entertained until it’s time to watch the ball drop. While you should still keep the TV on and tuned in to the Rockin’ New Years Eve Special, most of your guests won’t have their eyes on the screen until closer to midnight. Keep the volume on the TV low until the ball starts to drop. Here are some other activity ideas for your New Year’s Eve RV Party:

Homemade Photo Booth

Set up a backdrop, supply some props and cut-outs, and invite your guests to snap photos in front of your homemade photo booth. If you have a bunkhouse in your RV, like the one seen in this Catalina 293QBCK, that will provide a perfect place to put your photo booth.

Truth or Dare Jenga

Put a spin on this childhood classic by playing truth or dare Jenga. This game is great for cultivating social interactions in small spaces. Make your own by writing truth or dare challenges on Jenga blocks. Then have your guests fulfill whatever the requirement is on the block they pull. Some examples include “swap an item of clothing,” “finish your drink,” or “admit your last lie.”

Finish-the-Sentence Guessing Game

Make a set of finish-the-blank cards and have your guests write in how they would end the sentence. Once everyone fills theirs out, have one person read them aloud and then guess whose card was whose. Some examples include “My resolution for the new year is …,” “This year I want to be more like …,” or “The best piece of advice I got this year was …”

Have a Bonfire

The temperature on New Year’s Eve will undoubtedly be cold, but having a bonfire outside of your RV is the perfect way to let your guests get some fresh air without having them freeze. A bonfire will expand the size of your party space because your guests will be able to go outside without being uncomfortably cold. Just put someone in charge of maintaining the fire throughout the night.

The Afterparty

Plan out your available overnight accommodations so you have a place already established for your too-tipsy-to-drive guests to sleep it off. You don’t want your stumbling-drunk friend passing out on the floor while you’re trying to make sense of your bed situation. Keeping the phone number of a taxi service on hand is a good idea as well. If you’re feeling like a generous party host, you might want to bid your guests farewell with a party favor. Some excellent party favor ideas can be a mini bottle of champagne, a hangover kit (mini bottle of water and aspirin), or a mini potted succulent. We hope you’re ready to party the night away and ring in the new year right! Do you have any other suggestions for how to throw the ultimate New Year’s Eve party in your RV? Let us hear them by leaving a comment!

Wintertime Obstacle Course, Made From Snow!

What can you do when the ground is covered in snow and typical warm-weather activities, such as swimming and biking, are out of the question? Create a wintertime obstacle course made from snow, of course! This fun, creative activity gets the whole family involved and it can be done right in your backyard! All you have to do is bundle up, grab a few supplies, and get ready to have some cold-weather fun! Here are some ideas for things you can include in your wintertime obstacle course!

Snow Maze

If you have a lot of outdoor space to work with, you can create a snow maze! All you need is an open area filled with snow and a shovel. Then you just dig away and add a few twists, turns, and dead ends. The first one out wins! This can be an activity all on its own, or part of a larger obstacle course. If it’s going to be really involved, you may want to draw it out on paper first, and then get someone on a ladder to assist you in making it. This way someone is getting a view from above to ensure it’s coming together properly. If you have a lot of snow, bust out the snow blower to cut through it faster!

Hurdles

Build hurdles of snow to jump! All you need to do is make tall but narrow piles of snow that are spaced out. Make sure they’re low enough and thin enough for kids to jump over successfully. Make them different heights depending on how difficult you want them to be!

Target Practice

Set up a target that you can throw snowballs at. Try to knock soda bottles off a fence post or a hat off a snowman’s head. You can make an actual target board, but it may be harder to see who’s throw was closer since the snow may not stick well to the board.

Snow Toss

Using food coloring and water, create a few different-colored rings in the snow and a line the participants must stand behind when throwing. Have each participant try to toss their snowballs into the rings to get points. Assign a point value to each ring. The closer rings are worth less points and the further rings are worth the most. The first person who gets 10 points (or whatever point total you choose) wins!

Hill Climb

This one takes longer to make than to do! Get out your shovel (or snowblower!) and make a huge pile of snow for participants to climb. The bigger and steeper the better. However if it’s really steep, you might want to anchor a rope into the hill or dig out some places for their feet for easier climbing.

Row Your Sled

Make a beginning line in the snow where everyone lines up their sleds. Participants have to sit in their sleds and move them across flat snow using only their hands. Using feet or another person isn’t allowed! They’ll work up a wintry sweat with this one! If you set up all these obstacles in succession, you can have a ton of fun moving from one to another. You’ll also get in your cardio workout for the day, both creating it and participating in it! Do you do a wintertime obstacle course? What obstacles do you include? Tell us in the comments!

RVing and Skiing: A Perfect Pair

While lots of people dread winter’s arrival, there are still those who get giddy at the sight of freshly-fallen snow. While it might not be the most obvious match up, RVing and skiing really are the perfect pair. Plenty of RVs are built to withstand cold climates, and plenty of skiers are looking for alternatives to the high-costs of most ski-town lodging. When brought together, RVing and skiing become a dynamic duo that paves the way for easier and more convenient winter weather excursions.

Sleep Where You Ski

A number of ski mountains and resorts allow RVers to set up camp right in the parking lot. Some of them even offer power hookups, showers, and restroom facilities so you can stay warm, clean, and comfortable throughout your stay. Here are just some of the most accommodating ski spots for RVers:

    • Crystal Mountain, Washington

    • Hoodoo Ski Area, Washington

    • Stevens Pass, Washington

    • Bear Valley, California

    • Bridger Bowl, Montana

    • Wolf Creek Ski Resort, Colorado

There are also a wide range of RV parks and campgrounds that remain open year round for the hordes of snow-crazed skiers who head to the mountains once fresh snow falls. Open RV sites can be found near popular ski spots like Steamboat Springs, Breckenridge, and Park City.

Go With The Snow

You can’t know for certain if the snow is going to fall, or how much is going to be dumped, or when it’s going to arrive. But when you have an RV you don’t have to wait around for the weather to cooperate. Instead, you can go where the powder is without having to worry about switching hotel reservations or finding new accommodations. And you don’t have to settle for skiing down dirt slopes either. It’s also easy to change locations because all your equipment and gear is stored in a single, portable unit instead of strewn about your hotel room. It isn’t just convenient to have an RV, it’s also economically efficient when you consider the high prices of ski town lodging during peak months.

Best RVs For Skiers

Motorhomes and compact travel trailers are most conducive to the skiing lifestyle. Motorhomes eliminate the need for a tow vehicle and are easier to maneuver when compared to hulking fifth wheels. Travel trailers are ideal because you can pair them with a super-duty truck that is guaranteed to have the moxie to make it up mountainous terrain. Here are some of our top picks for the best skiing RVs: Gulf Stream BT Cruiser 5270 This Class C motorhome features a spacious layout perfect for stretching your legs after a long day on the slopes. With heat pads on the holding tanks, you won’t have to worry about cold weather doing any damage to your systems or water lines. A built-in back-up camera will help you maneuver through the ski lodge parking lots, and all stainless steel appliances complete the BT Cruiser 5270.

Gulf Stream Conquest 6256 For those hoping to find a winter-ready RV that can accommodate the whole family or your group of ski bum friends, then this Class C Conquest 6256 might be the right rig for you! Basement storage lets you store your skis, poles, and gear beneath the coach so your interior stays spacious and inviting, and a powerful 25,000-BTU furnace will help thaw you out after ripping through the snow all day!

Coachmen Freelander 21QB The compact Class C Freelander 21QB boasts a vacu-bond laminated shell to eliminate condensation buildup and keep the heat from your 20K-BTU ducted furnace trapped inside. A Roto-Cast rear warehouse trunk box gives you a place to store your ski gear so you can keep your interior storage areas free. With reclining driver and passenger seats, you’ll stay comfortable during the drive no matter how far away the mountain is!

Jayco Octane ZX Super Lite 161 At only 20′ 8″ long, the Octane ZX Super Lite 161 toy hauler still manages to offer an 8′ cargo area perfect for loading up your snow gear and seeking out some fresh powder. The 7′ spring-assisted ramp door makes it easy to load and unload your gear. With the optional heated and enclosed underbelly, you can head into cold climates without worry of freezing temperatures causing damage to your tanks and lines.

Jayco Jay Feather 25BH Bring everybody along for the ski trip with this accommodating Jay Feather 25BH bunkhouse-style travel trailer that offers sleep space for up to ten campers! Multiple exterior storage compartments ensure that everyone can bring along all the gear and equipment they need. A vacuum-bonded shell reduces moisture and with the optional AstroFoil insulation and heated bed mat additions, you can stay warm and toasty no matter what the temperatures are!

Coachmen Freedom Express 192RBS Boasting a compact, easy-to-tow build and comfortable accommodations, the Freedom Express 192RBS travel trailer is perfect for living luxuriously outside of the ski lodge. Along the exterior you’ll find pass-through compartments to house your snow pants, helmets, boots, poles, and skis. Add on the optional thermal package and heated, enclosed underbelly to make this RV ready for the cold conditions.

For skiing enthusiasts looking to traverse lots of slopes this winter without spending lots of money, shacking up in an RV is a smart alternative to pricey hotels and condo rentals. And the more you save, the more lift passes you can afford! That’s why RVing and skiing make a perfect pair!

Getting Ready For Christmas – Hunt For Candy Canes!

Easter is long past, so an Easter egg hunt is probably out of the question if you’re looking for a fun and exciting Christmas activity! But why not take that same idea and use it for a fun Christmastime game that your little ones will definitely enjoy? Get everyone ready for Christmas and into the holiday spirit with a rousing hunt for candy canes!

Make Your Holiday Sweet

A candy cane scavenger hunt is the perfect festive activity to do whether you have one child or a classroom full of them! It’s so simple! Just hide candy canes around a room (or even the whole house)! Turn the kids loose and see if they can find every single candy cane! This is a fun, engaging, and inexpensive activity you can do with kids. Plus, they’ll get candy out of the deal, so everyone wins! This is a game that you can keep going too! Let the kids take a turn hiding the candy canes while you find them!

For younger kids, a candy cane scavenger hunt can be a great exercise for them on many levels! Tell them how many candy canes they have to find and then let them count them out as they go along. Test their math skills and have them figure out how many they have left to find! For older kids, you can extend the scavenger hunt beyond candy canes if you’re feeling creative! If you are playing with more than one or two kids, you could even throw in a candy cane or two that is a different color than the others, and whoever finds it wins a prize! You could also award a prize to whoever finds the most!

New Traditions

There are also a few fun ways to implement this game aside from just hiding the candy canes around the house! This is the perfect game for an Elf on the Shelf activity! Print off a card telling kids that the elf has hidden a certain amount of candy canes around the house and they have to find them! If you like to pair fun activities with advent calendars, this will be a perfect game! Just hide the same amount of candy canes for whichever day of the month it is and let the kids scour the house! If you need more ideas for a kids’ holiday party, just buy a few boxes of candy canes! This can also be a great new Christmas morning tradition: hide a select number of candy canes around the living room, and whoever finds the most gets to open the first present!

This simple and fun candy cane scavenger hunt may have you wondering why you’ve never thought of this before! It’s the perfect way to get everyone ready and in the spirit for Christmas! What other fun and creative activities or traditions does your family have to help celebrate the holiday season? Comment to share your neat festive ideas!

Super Fun Nature Arts and Crafts

A lot of really cool crafts can be made with items from nature, and getting into the creative spirit is something you never really outgrow! So gather up your little campers, go into the woods for supplies, and get ready for a great time as you all make these super fun nature arts and crafts!

Twig Feeders

Adorn your trees with one of these awesome stick-built feeders and then sit back and watch the birds flock and feast!

What You’ll Need:

  • 12 sticks
  • Paint and brushes
  • Hot glue gun
  • Yarn

How To Make:
Start by breaking your sticks into similar lengths and painting them with a variety of colors. Wait for the sticks to dry before firing up the hot glue gun. Situate four of your sticks into a square and glue them together. At each corner of the square, glue a stick that extends upward and attaches to the other three forming a square-based pyramid. Do this on both sides of the square so that your sticks are configured into two three-dimensional pyramids that share a base. Tie a loop of yarn to one end so that you can hang it from a tree branch. Then set an apple inside your contraption so that it’s cradled in the point of the upside-down pyramid.

Rainbow Trees

Add some colorful flair to the forest with this awesome craft project that will leave your trees looking psychedelically vibrant!

What You’ll Need:

  • Water
  • Sidewalk chalk
  • Paint brushes
  • Trees

How To Make:
Start by soaking sidewalk chalk in water for a few hours. As it’s soaking, select a drab-looking tree that could use some color! Trees with smooth bark work best. To begin the transformation, start coloring the trunk of the tree with your chalk. Color as much or as little as you’d like. Then dip your paintbrushes in water and brush over the chalk so that the colors run together creating a crazy multi-colored masterpiece!

Pinecone Turkeys

These little gobblers will be the perfect table centerpieces for when you’re devouring the Thanksgiving bird and the sweet potato pie!

What You’ll Need:

  • A pinecone
  • Fall-colored felt
  • Googly eyes
  • Scissors
  • Hot glue gun

How To Make:
Start by cutting out feathers from your felt pieces. You’ll need to cut out a triangular-shaped beak as well. As you’re making your cuts, start heating up the glue gun. Secure your feathers onto the bottom of the pine cone so that they fan out to resemble a turkey’s tail. Glue on the beak to the opposing end. Just above the beak, stick on two googly eyes. Then set out your new seasonal decoration for guests and family members to admire!


Leaf Bowl

Bring a hint of the great outdoors into your home by creating this cute little leaf bowl that would make a great candy dish or jewelry holder!

What You’ll Need:

  • A leaf
  • Air-dry clay
  • Rolling pin
  • Aluminum foil
  • A scalpel blade
  • Paint
  • Clear-gloss sealant

How To Make:
Start by rolling out your clay with a rolling pin to about a quarter-inch thickness. Then set the leaf onto the surface of the clay with the vein side down, and roll over it again so that the leaf presses into the clay. Using your scalpel blade, cut around the shape of the leaf to trim off the excess clay. Then gently peel off the leaf (a pair of fine-tipped tweezers might help with this step). Form a ring out of aluminum foil and set your clay leaf inside so that it forms a bowl with the foil supporting the outer portions of the leaf. Let it dry overnight. Once dry, paint it and spray with a clear-gloss sealant!

Wildflower Window Clings

Give your boring windows a burst of color and bring the beauty of wildflower fields into your home with this creative craft project!

What You’ll Need:

  • Flower petals
  • Leaves
  • Clear contact paper

How To Make:
Start by setting down your contact paper with the adhesive side facing up. Then arrange your flower petals and leaves onto the paper in any design you’d like. Once you’re satisfied, stick the contact paper to your windows so that the flower petals and leaves are sandwiched between the glass and the paper. Then watch the sun shine through and brighten up your colorful creation!

Can’t get enough nature art-and-craft ideas? Then you’ll love these fun leaf-pressing projects or this awesome build-your-own-terrarium project! We’d love to see your crafty creations, so feel free to share pictures with us on Facebook or Instagram!

Leaf Pressing: Making Art With Fallen Leaves

Fall is a wonderful time of year, and not just because of the delicious apple cider, cozy flannels, and free candy. When cooler air starts to move in and the leaves begin changing color, our once-green landscapes become vibrant displays of wonder flecked with hues of orange, red, and yellow!

But before you know it all the leaves will have fallen off the trees and you’ll be eagerly awaiting their return the following year – until now! With these spectacular leaf pressing ideas, you can preserve the essence of the autumn season and enjoy it throughout the year by making art with fallen leaves!

Leaf Pressing: Preparing Your Medium

After you’ve gathered your collection of leaves, sandwich them between two pieces of wax paper. Place an old towel on your ironing board and place your wax-paper-sandwich on top of the towel. Lay another old towel over your sandwiched leaves. Heat an iron to high and run it across the towel with NO steam. Keep running your iron back and forth across the towel until your wax paper begins to seal. Once the wax paper is melted and fully-sealed, allow it to cool before cutting out your individual leaves which are now ready to be turned into a work of art!

Charming Autumn Showpiece

Buy a sizable piece of wood from your local home improvement store and have them cut it to your desired size. Stain it according to your personal preference. Once it’s dry, trace on an outline of a large maple leaf. Starting from the bottom, begin laying down your leaves and layering them so that they fan out toward the blades of the leaf outline. When placing your individual leaves, make sure they follow the outline you made so that when your project is finished the smaller leaves form the shape of one giant maple leaf. Secure your leaves to the board with hot glue and Mod Podge. Then glue on a small stick to give your maple leaf a stem. Hang your leaf board up on the wall or set it on your mantel for an eye-catching decoration that is sure to impress house guests.

Adorable Leaf Creatures Fridge Art

This project is great for those looking to do a fun craft with the kids! For the widest selection of animals to make, pick leaves that vary in size, shape, and color. Once your leaves are prepared all you’ll need is paper, glue, and a black marker. Instruct your kids to position their leaves to create cute little woodland creatures. Here are some animal ideas to get you started:

  • Hedgehog: Use the pointy blades of maple leaves to form the spiky back of a hedgehog
  • Owl: Use an elm leaf and position it with the point facing down to form the body of an owl
  • Gold fish: Use an elm leaf as the body of the fish, with a maple leaf to create the tail fin
  • Lion: Fan out pointy alder-type leaves around a more circular-shaped leaf for the lion’s mane

Glue your leaves down so your animals stay in place, and have your kids draw on facial features with the black marker. Then display the artwork of your little ones proudly on the fridge!

Trendy Monogrammed Leaf Wreath

Take a trip to your local craft store and purchase a large wooden letter that corresponds to the first letter of your family’s last name. Using spray adhesive, overlap and attach your pressed leaves to the letter so that no wood is exposed but the letter is still legible. With a piece of decorative ribbon, make a loop at the top of your letter so that you have a way to hang it from your front door.

Elegant Leaf Imprint Wall Portraits

While this project won’t display the vibrant colors of your fall leaves, it still results in a beautiful piece of art that you can proudly display in your home or RV. To begin you’ll need a flat surface such as a piece of wood, thick cardboard, or stretched canvas. Mist your surface of choice with some spray adhesive before placing your pressed leaves on it with the vein-side facing up. Coat on another layer of spray adhesive over the leaves. Then put a sheet of aluminum foil on top of your leaves and mounting surface with the shinier side facing up. Rub your fingers over the leaves so that their texture shows through on the aluminum foil. Next you’ll want to spray a light coat of matte spray paint (any color you choose) onto your foil. After it’s dry use soft steel wool to delicately rub the surface of your foil so that its shiny silver surface shows through your spray paint. The end result is an elegant piece of leaf art that you can display anywhere!

Once you’ve got your collection of fallen autumn leaves, the options for what you can do with them are practically endless. In addition to these ideas you can also brush paint on your pressings to create cool leaf-textured stamps that can be used to put a seasonal spin on gift tags, or hot-glue your leaves to a plastic headband to create a crown that will turn your little ones into princesses of the fall season! Do you have any other ideas for how to make art with fallen leaves? Leave us a comment to let us know!