In our 4 years of full-timing, we've camped in a couple of rest stops, some state parks, national parks, small and large family owned campgrounds, KOA's, a county park, a city park, two farms, and a few "resorts". Almost all of them have been quite nice, a few have been really beautiful. Most have been "natural", peaceful, and quiet...what we would call "camping"... until we came to JELLYSTONE.
Two weeks ago we had the pleasure of meeting up with our eastern grandchildren who live in up-state New York. Because they are so far East, we don't get to visit with them very often, so when we do, we try to spend as much time as we can with them having fun. There are five of them, ages 5 to 14, so keeping them entertained, is quite a challenge! It was suggested that we try camping at the Jellystone Campground at Garrattsville, a half hour away from where they live, as "it has everything!" So, that's what we did.
Well..."camping" is a very loose term for it. Yes, you are in an RV, or a tent, or a cabin, but it pretty much ends there! First of all, forget about the "peace and quiet", and I'm not referring to the kids, because I expected that (and honestly, they were pretty good) it was all that traffic! I've never in all my life seen so many cars, trucks, vans, and golf carts coming and going, back and forth, up and down all day & night! You'd think people forgot how to walk! Granted, the park was pretty large...but not that large! I also thought how strange that a park who's sole purpose was to entertain kids, had a staff that, for the most part, was completely bored! Only 4, out of about 20, were friendly and smiled at the kids and interacted with them, while the others couldn't be bothered at all. Granted, I tend to watch staff a bit closer, having been a supervisor over this type of staff for so many years...but still...
The campsites themselves were a bit odd. Each area was completely different, and if you didn't know the campground before you booked (we didn't, and really lucked out!) you could be in a great place, or in an awful one. Our site was in a cul-de-sac (yellow) that was always in the shade, no matter how hot or sunny the day was. That would be great if it had been in the 80's +, but unfortunately, it wasn't and it even rained several times. The sites there were very uneven, very lumpy and bumpy, making it difficult to level the rig. Worse tho, was that the hook-ups were way up front of the "back-in" site. Now, for anyone reading this that doesn't own a motorhome, what that means, is that, it doesn't work for us - as our hook-ups are in the back! Weird. This is the very first time we've ever seen this at any campground we have been in! We ended up moving 3 times to find a spot that would work!
Now, my son's campsite was just across the road (brown across from the blue), out of the cul-de-sac, and his was in total sun, not a bit of shade! The one great thing about both our sites tho, was that they were close to all the activities - the pool, the pavilion, the boat dock, the slip-n-slide, the lake and the arcade. That sure made it nice for all of us!
The pool and the slip-n-slide were not heated, and the temperatures just didn't stay hot all week, so we still got some "I'm bored", but we all seem to manage. Rainy days turned into "movie days" (thank goodness for Grandma's movie collection!) and "baking time"!
Like all vacations, it comes to an end. Dirty cloths, art projects and souvenirs gathered, along with our newly baked goodies, all packed and ready to go back to Mom & Dad's.
Hugs & kisses given and off they went. Jack and I sat back, looked around and just sighed.
Don't think we'll do a Jellystone again...just not our style...looking forward to the good ol' fashioned peace and quiet kind of camping...;-)
...On the road to Vermont, Marie