Part of our plan when we became full timers in our RV was to spend at least the first couple seasons working at campgrounds. We felt that this would give us a better transition from full time jobs to full retirement. And at the same time give us a little security money-wise until we feel that we can do it on our own. KOA was our first choice. We put our resumes out last August on the KOA site and were hired within just a few days. We will be working in Bar Harbor, Maine this summer. I will be working front desk, and Dave will be working in maintenance.
KOA offered a Work Kamper “Boot Camp” in Branson, MO that would give us a taste of what to expect when we arrive in Maine in just a few weeks.
The Work Kamper program is simple enough. You work for the campground as a couple, putting in between 25 and 40 hours a week depending on the season. In exchange, you could be offered a campsite free of charge, utilities and other perks, along with an hourly salary. (The benefits vary from campground to campground as most are individually owned).
We were excited to meet KOA’s Chairman and CEO, Jim Rogers. The show, Undercover Boss featured him a few years ago.
Boot camp was a lot of fun. We met nearly 100 other couples who are doing the same thing we are. Most did not have jobs lined up yet, and took advantage of the virtual job interviews offered at the end of the class.
The folks at the Branson KOA were wonderful and made us feel like part of the team.
And while we were in Missouri, we got a good taste of midwest weather. We ate dinner the first night looking out the window as hail the size of marbles came down on our VW bug and motorhome. (No damage- unless you want to count the indigestion…) The second night, we had major thunderstorms all night.
All night. The dogs literally had their legs crossed by morning.
Really. We made the decision pretty quickly that we didn’t want to spend too much time in tornado alley during spring and summer.
The third day was beautiful, sunny and cold. Since classes were over, we decided to check out Branson.
Stay tuned for part two where I don’t get to meet Barry Williams (AKA Greg from the Brady Bunch), but I do end up seeing some pretty famous folks that nearly made up for it!