NORTH BEND — The Bay Area is starting to reap the rewards of a massive motor coach rally that took place in 2012.
Today will conclude the Oregon Coast RV Jamboree, a new event at The Mill Casino-Hotel sponsored by Guaranty RV Super Centers. The event saw dozens of vehicles visiting, and included a Menasha forest tour and traditional tribal salmon bake.
Ray Doering, communications manager for the Mill, says the Bay Area can expect more of these rallies in the future coming off the success of last year’s massive Family Motor Coach Association Northwest Rally.
“There has been so much interest created from last year, it kind of built on itself,” Doering said Wednesday. “It’s nice that we made a good impression.”
Over 1,200 people attended the Northwest Rally, which was that event’s first venture to the coast. The rally’s success spawned five smaller events at the Mill, one of which was this week’s Jamboree.
Increase RV traffic in and out of the Mill has given a shot in the arm to the local economy. Doering says the vehicles may pull into the casino’s property, but attendees travel out into the community regularly.
“We thought, ‘We have an RV Park, let’s get a rally together. Let’s do something really special for folks.’ And it really caught on,” Doering said.
There are two more events scheduled this year that can trace their origin back to the FMCA Rally. One is similar in size to the Jamboree and takes place in August. The second event will be a joint GMC Cascaders, GMC 49ers and GMC Western States Fall 2013 Rally. That event takes place in October and over 100 vehicles are anticipated.
The biggest boon for the Bay Area, though, is FMCA planning to return its Northwest Rally here in 2015.
Doering says he doesn’t expect rising gas prices to keep travelers from coming to the coast.
“They are more connected to their coaches than they are to the price of gas,” Doering said. “I imagine there is a tipping point somewhere, but folks still want to travel — although they may not travel as far — and these are folks who love to travel.”
Reporter Tim Novotny can be reached at 541-269-1222, ext. 235, at firstname.lastname@example.org, or on Twitter at @novots34.