Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Home on the Road: Have Rv, Will Travel

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Home on the Road: Have Rv, Will Travel

Article excerpt

When Fred Witherbee steps out of his home, he can listen to the birds sing in nearby trees, or prospect for gold in the Arizona desert, or pick blueberries in Maine.

It just depends on where he and his wife, Janet, are at the moment.

Like thousands of people, the Witherbees enjoy RVing - traveling the nation's roadways in recreational vehicles, or RVs as they are commonly known.

"What you see is it, this is our home," said Witherbee, pointing to his 32-foot Monterrey equipped with all the comforts of home.

The Witherbees were among scores of RVers recently enjoying the beauty and tranquillity of Lake of the Ozarks State Park - Missouri's largest state park.

"It's an extended family from all walks of life and all parts of the country," said Witherbee, 61, a retired autoworker from St. Louis. "You get to see a lot more of the country and meet a lot more people, from company executives to ditch diggers."

But RVing isn't for everybody, Witherbee quickly adds: "You have to like people, and you have to like to talk."

The Witherbees are among the growing number of people, a lot of them retirees, who satisfy their wanderlust with RVs - buying one and calling it home or renting one for a few days or weeks.

In Missouri, there are 27,270 RVs registered this year, an increase of some 3,300 from 1993.

They range from 20-foot mini-models to 40-foot mobile mansions. The cost ranges from a few thousand dollars for a used model to $500,000 for the mega-RVs with all the bells and whistles.

RVs also are available for rental, with price depending on location. In Jefferson City, a 28-foot RV can be rented for about $750 a week with 100 free miles.

Many RVers like to travel in groups, going from one location to another. A number of organizations cater to RVers, setting up special rallies and gathering places.

Among the largest, and perhaps best known, is the Good Sam Club - a 30-year-old national organization with some 2,300 chapters. …

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