Habitat For Humanity’s RV-Related Program Celebrates 25 Years
Habitat for Humanity honored the 25th anniversary of the RV Care-A-Vanner program with a celebration build and rally in Springfield, Missouri, April 21 through May 4, 2014.
“The RV Care-A-Vanner program is a special part of Habitat’s ministry that has played a significant role in improving the lives of thousands of people across North America,” said Jonathan Reckford, CEO of Habitat for Humanity International. “We thank all the volunteers for their continued support and dedication to this program for the past 25 years.”
During the two-week building event hosted by Habitat for Humanity of Springfield, volunteers and RV Care-A-Vanners planned to build two new homes and perform critical home repairs in Legacy Trails, a planned Habitat community.
The RV Care-A-Vanner program is open to all volunteers who are interested in traveling to spread Habitat’s mission across the United States and Canada by helping local affiliates build and advocate for decent and affordable housing.
In 2012, the RV Care-A-Vanner program launched its first disaster rebuild effort in the tornado-ravaged area of Morehead, Kentucky. The following year, the program established a Disaster Rebuild Team to help with rebuilding efforts in communities impacted by natural disasters, including Joplin, Missouri, which was devastated by tornadoes in 2011.
For more information about the RV Care-A-Vanner program and other Habitat volunteer programs, visit www.habitat.org/getinv. For more information about the FMCA Chapter: Habitat for Humanity®, which works in conjunction with the RV Care-A-Vanner program, visit www.tmbf.org/fmca-hfh/index.html or contact chapter president Alan Schmiedt at (574) 238-1097.
Firearm Laws Guide
The 2014 edition of the Traveler’s Guide To The Firearm Laws Of The Fifty States contains important information for any gun owner and RVer. More than 1 million copies have been sold since 1996, and the book is a go-to for gun-owning motorhome owners.
In addition to listing each state’s laws regarding carry of a gun in a motor vehicle, the guide addresses numerous other issues, such as open carry, traffic stops, and concealed carry reciprocity.
The book is researched and written by attorney J. Scott Kappas and is 68 pages long. It is priced at $13.95 including bulk mail shipping, or $17.95 total with first-class shipping.
To order, visit www.gunlawguide.com or send orders to Traveler’s Guide, P.O. Box 2156, Covington, KY 41012; (859) 491-6400 (Monday – Friday, 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time).
Advanced RV First To Use RV Air Suspension On Sprinter Chassis
An improved Sprinter suspension system is now available in the United States, and Advanced RV, based in Willoughby, Ohio, is the first certified installer of the system in this country.
VB-Airsuspension (www.vbairsuspension.com), a Holland-based company focused on delivering increased comfort, drivability, and safety, collaborated with Mercedes-Benz, manufacturer of the Sprinter, to design an air suspension system specifically for Sprinter RVs.
Advanced RV’s search for a suspension system solution began more than a year ago, when company founder Mike Neundorfer recognized consumers’ demand for an improved ride, especially for passengers riding in the rear of the Sprinter. The search picked up when Advanced RV lead engineer Chris Puetzfeld met with VB-Airsuspension at the Caravan Salon Dusseldorf, an RV show in Germany, where he discovered that the company had developed an improved rear suspension system.
Back home in the United States, Advanced RV staff installed and tested the new system on three motorhome models, the first few installations in North America. According to Advanced RV officials, the results were even more impressive than expected. The ride was much smoother, the sway nearly eradicated, and the “trampoline effect” was eliminated. An unexpected bonus: the motorhomes provided stronger resistance to crosswinds.
Founded in 2012, Advanced RV builds personalized motorhomes on the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter platform. All models feature the company’s off-the-grid power system, which enables owners to take their RVs anywhere without the need to rely on shore power. For more information, visit www.advanced-rv.com or call (440) 283-0405.
Marathon Coach Celebrates 20 Years In Oregon Headquarters
This year marks Marathon Coach’s 20th anniversary in its custom-designed world headquarters, manufacturing, sales, and service facility located at 91333 Industrial Way in Coburg, Oregon. The facility was built on 17.5 acres with approximately 160,000 square feet of production space. A total of 908 custom motor coaches have been produced at this location alone.
Founded in 1983, Marathon Coach originally operated in buildings located in Eugene, Oregon. Growth necessitated the move to a new facility, and the move to Coburg took place after suitable property was found there in 1993.
In 1994 Marathon Coach Florida, a sales and service complex, opened near Tampa. Expansion continued as Marathon Coach Texas opened in Grand Prairie, near Dallas/Fort Worth, in November 2006. Marathon continues to be prosperous in 2014 and hired more than 25 new employees in recent months to accommodate increased production. The company also employs 25 long-term team members who made the move with the company to Coburg.
For more information, visit www.marathoncoach.com or call (800) 234-9991.
Doctor Tells Kids (Young And Old) To Take A Hike
In Washington, D.C., a pediatrician is prescribing hikes. And he has teamed with U.S. Rep. John Sarbanes (D-MD) and National Park Service director Jonathan B. Jarvis to make the “medicine” more popular.
DC Park Rx champion Dr. Robert Zarr is a practicing primary-care pediatrician at Unity’s Upper Cardozo Health Center in Washington, D.C. With more than 40 percent of Unity’s adult patients and 25 percent of Unity’s pediatric patients categorized as obese, he became passionately engaged in the implementation of DC Park Rx as an innovative solution for his patients.
“This is a unique opportunity for obesity prevention by prescribing parks for children and adults who are suffering from chronic diseases. Nature is free and readily available; we simply have to access it,” Dr. Zarr said.
Parks and public lands are playing a growing part in health-care strategy. “National parks have always been loved for their symbolism and scenery, but we want to increase the awareness of their role in preventative medicine and therapy,” Jarvis said. The Park Rx initiative is a component of the broader Healthy Parks Healthy People movement, which recognizes the physical, mental, and spiritual benefits gained from time spent outdoors. Participants in the Healthy Parks Healthy People program include national, state, and local parks, as well as business innovators, health-care leaders, scientists, foundations, and advocacy organizations that foster and build upon the role that parks and nature play in the health of our society.
Dr. Zarr has fully integrated Park Rx into Unity’s Electronic Health Records system to make park prescriptions easy for everyone. Various organizations worked collaboratively to create a searchable database of 350 parks located within the city, and rate them according to specific criteria such as level of activity, accessibility, cleanliness, and safety.
Clinicians can now ask their patients which activities might be of interest to them and then search the database to find the right park closest to their homes. Patients leave their doctor’s office with a printed copy of the prescribed park and activities tailored to their areas of interest.
Allied Recreation Group Expands West Coast Center
Allied Recreation Group (ARG) has expanded its West Coast service center in Coburg, Oregon, to provide owners greater access to factory service. ARG, a division of Allied Specialty Vehicles, incorporates the following motorhome brands: American Coach, Beaver, Fleetwood RV, Holiday Rambler, Monaco, Royale Coach, and Safari.
ARG officials note that the company has invested in additional equipment and technician training and also has increased the number of factory-trained technicians at the Oregon facility.
The service center in Coburg can perform major and minor body work, insurance and collision repairs, remodeling, furniture and cabinetry upgrades, chassis maintenance and repairs, and chassis alignment, as well as other major and minor RV service work.
ARG also has a factory service center in Decatur, Indiana.
For more information about Allied Recreation Group, visit www.alliedrecreationgroup.com. The Oregon service center can be reached at (877) 466-6226; the Indiana service center at (800) 435-7345.
Look At RVing Books
For those considering the full-time RV lifestyle, RV Retirement by Jane Kenny, first published in 2006, has been updated for 2014 in a second edition called RV Retirement In The 21st Century ($16.95, Roundabout Publications). The book covers topics such as financial planning, expenses, working while on the road, and much more. It is available from online retailers or from the publisher at www.travelbooksusa.com.
Publications at the Web site www.aboutrving.com are written by RVers Ron and Sandy Jones. New for 2014 is The Best RV Trips In North America, an e-book by Ron that is full of details about RV trips to spots in Canada, including the Canadian Maritimes and Vancouver Island, and in the United States, among them Chicago, Key West, and the Natchez Trace Parkway. The PDF-format book costs $4.95 and is available from the publisher.
Print-format books at the site include RVing To Alaska, Second Edition; RVing To Newfoundland; Fulltiming For New and Used RVers, Second Edition; and All The Stuff You Need To Know About RVing, Second Edition. In addition to being sold via www.aboutrving.com, some also are available from online booksellers.