500,000 bottles of sparkling wine mature in this section of the underground cellars at Cricova Winery just north of Chisinau, Moldova. Photo taken December 3, 2016.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Chisinau, Republic of Moldova.

Where are they going next? Transnistria. The country that doesn't exist!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Summer RV parking at schools?

Here's an interesting thing I came across. And if more school boards opened their minds to the idea, it might really take off.

Apparently, with schools being closed in the summer, that's the time of year when vandalism occurs. So the Anchorage School District started a camper host program so that there would be a presence at the schools, figuring that would discourage the vandals...

Here's the link to the school board's website...

http://www.asdk12.org/events/camper_host.asp

(Edit: And reader Dugg passes along this article about the school board's camp host system...

http://www.adn.com/article/20140620/anchorage-s-summer-stewards-schools)

Some things I don't quite get though. The one month minimum commitment seems a bit of a stretch. No way that we could sit there for a month, even if we had a tow vehicle with us. And if we were the only ones there, and we took off exploring, I'd be worried about our RV getting vandalized, if they have that much of a problem.

And, it looks like they used to have a holding tank pumping service but no longer do. So, if people are there longer term they'll have to be pretty conscious of their water usage considering  they're given a free water hookup, but nowhere to dump their tanks!

I would have thought they would be better off simply allowing free overnight parking. You'd think there would be enough RV travelers willing to take advantage of that since I've heard that Alaska area Walmarts get really busy with RV'ers during the summer.

We're pretty inventive when it comes to finding overnight parking spots, but we've never overnighted at a school. Without prior permission of some kind I'd say that's an invitation for a middle of the night knock on the door by someone in a uniform who carries a gun. And yet, parking overnight at a school during the summer makes perfect sense for both parties!

Oh wait...we did actually overnight at a school...when our son went to University in Plattsburgh, NY we had permission from the baseball coach to park near the diamond, but he forgot to tell campus security and we ended up with a cop at our door at 6:00am! That's the one time we've ever been woken up by the cops!

Anyhow, I thought that was an interesting idea and it's nice to see one school board thinking outside the box a little bit.

Happy Campers Organic RV Holding Tank Treatment

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24 comments:

  1. I think it's a good idea too if the RV'ers don't trash the place. I think free camping over rides having to drive off site to dump waste. It's pretty expensive and limited space in Alaska for camping....even tent camping. I found that out when trying to make reservations for tent camping....I contacted National Park Service, REI and other entities to find area where we can tent camp....most camps are for RVs.

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    1. I think that the majority of RV's are good and don't leave trash but then there is always one that can ruin it for everyone else.

      It would depend on how close the nearest dump station is, otherwise free camping may not over ride the need to drive off if you have to go miles and miles and use up precious and expensive gas.

      From what we have heard if you stay outside of the cities there is a ton of free camping in Alaska but it seems that most people want to be around other people/RV's.

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  2. Permitting RV camping at a school in the summer is a good idea, but a lot of stuff would need to be dealt with before this can become possible.

    Love the bird pictures BTW.

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    1. Totally agree Peter!

      Glad you are enjoying the birds. :-)

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  3. "No way that we could sit there for a month" --- ROFL, you committed to sitting in the middle of nowhere for five months! At least the Anchorage area has places to see.

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  4. Half baked. This could be a good idea, if anyone on the board actually owned an RV or had a clue. Used to work for such an outfit. They would come up with some crazy-assed ideas, that's for sure. Why would anyone want to park at a school for an entire month??

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    1. The program has been going on for ten years now. Here's a news article about nine of the volunteers from last year http://www.adn.com/article/20140620/anchorage-s-summer-stewards-schools

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    2. If there was LOTS to do in the area and you have a vehicle/toad than a month wouldn't be too bad, it all depends on the location, I guess.

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  5. Don't know if I'd like to do this, it would bring flashbacks of all the hours I spent in detention during my wild and misspent youth... :cD

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    1. You in detention, I find that hard to believe! ;-)

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  6. We overnighted in school parking lots twice. Once in Alberta in the summer when we ran out of daylight between Calgary and Drumheller. Big parking lot and we had no problems. The other time was in Mexico on a Saturday night. Again, no problem and that one was in a small village a short walk to a great little restaurant.

    Another place I think would work well is a church parking lot. They are not going to tell you to move on as you might be a customer and god knows they need them. Of course Saturday night might not be so good as you would probably be boxed in on Sunday morning.

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    1. That is one place we haven't overnighted yet! We have stayed at many churches though and they have always been good experiences. As you say don't do it on a Saturday night and watch out for the Bible Study nights, we did that one time and got invited to join them but our dinner was almost ready so we politely declined.

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  7. One month anywhere is something we are no crazy about, but no dump station??
    What were they thinking?

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    1. Again I think it depends on where you are and what there is to do in the area but without a dump station, we wouldn't do it!

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  8. Right now we are in Anchorage, forget about Walmart there is a city ordenance no overnights anywhere in Anchorage, Walmart used to look like a camp ground awnings out BBQs all over, all of that is stopped. Well about Church parking we were in Wyoming just over a month ago and we had been to a performance when we got out it was dark and raining the road out of town was under construction, we spotted this Baptist church I asked Phil what he thought he said all they can do is ask us to move on. We had no problems but we left by 7am all is well

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    1. We wouldn't have stayed in the Walmart parking lot anyways, even if you could. It's a shame how some people can ruin it for others. We think church parking lots are a great place, especially ones out in the country. We have stay a many nice church locations out in the maritimes. I think that Alaska would have a ton of free camping if you leave the cities/towns behind.

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    2. I have driven here 3 times and only paid for 2 nights each time, we stayed from 3 to 5 mths each time there are loads of off the road beautiful places to camp this time we are on a tour Im not a lover of these but oh well wont complain its a trip

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    3. That's exactly what I mean, lots of places to boondock so I don't understand why everyone tries to cram themselves into a parking lot! Nice to know that you enjoyed all that wide open space. :-)

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  9. Apparently people are willing to do it so why not allow it? Some schools in the states have "summer school" which might affect where they park you.

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    1. Yes, it certainly seems like some people are willing to do it. That is also another thought to keep in mind. There are also schools that do the year round schooling.

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  10. Hey Kevin and Ruth, I just came back to your blog because we've got refrigerator problems in our 11 yo rig and I know Sherman is older than that and Kevin has done some posts about fixing its problems but I can't find a search on your blog to look for them.

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    1. Kevin has tried putting a search box in the blog before and sometimes it works and sometimes it didn't so he removed it. He has now put it back in, hope you can find the posts you were looking for, as he has done a number of repairs to the refrigerator. If you have any questions don't hesitate to email us and Kevin will try to help you out.

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