For decades, Elkhart, Indiana has been known as the RV Capital of the World. That moniker is well deserved since more than 80 percent of the global RV production is based in the greater Elkhart-northern Indiana region.
A nod to the RV industry and a must-visit if you are traveling through the Elkhart area is the RV/MH Hall of Fame Museum and Library. This comprehensive overview is devoted to the recreational vehicle and manufactured home industries.
A few highlights include:
- A Hall of Fame honoring leaders in the RV/MH industries—More than 400 members are honored on the “Wall of Fame.”
- A comprehensive library contains more than 20,000 industry publications.
- A one-of-a-kind museum displays historic RVs, some dating back more than a century.
- A Go RVing Hall promotes both the RV and MH industries.
As a home base for exploring the area, Elkhart Campground is a good choice. In existence since 1968, Elkhart Campground offers 350 sites, including a full range of 50/30/20 amp hookups.
Amenities include free Wi-Fi, cable TV at some sites, water, sewer, restroom, showers, laundry facilities, a camp store, propane refill, a recreation room, and pet area. Other activities include a heated swimming pool, playground, mini-golf course, pickleball courts, and nearby walking trails.
A couple of miles away golfers will find Bent Oak Golf Course, which opened in 1985. The par 72, 18-hole Bent Oak course stretches to 6,504 yards from the tips. The course offers plenty of terrain challenges, along with tree-lined fairways and water hazards that come into play on seven holes.
While visiting the area, it’s hard not to notice the omnipresent Amish and Mennonite heritage and the simple Amish way of life that abounds throughout the region. A complete overview of the Amish people and culture can be experienced at Meno-Hof.
Elkhart Campground is a convenient location for visiting area RV manufacturers, various aspects of Amish country, as well as the National New York Central Railroad Museum.
For more details about greater Elkhart, visit www.amishcountry.org. You can also learn more about Elkhart Campground on RV LIFE Campgrounds.
See also: Love RVing? Don’t Miss the RV/MH Hall of Fame in Elkhart, Indiana
Rick Stedman is an avid golfer, RVer, and writer who lives in Olympia, Washington. Rick writes a golf column, “The RV Golfer,” which is published every month in rvlife.com. He can be reached at email@example.com.
M Miles says
This so sounds like it would be so much fun and something I would love to do!
Tim Kilbride says
Don’t miss all the art sculptures spread around town. They are very well done and some are almost lifelike.
Allan Bowman says
Elkhart builds some of the worst crap that can be found anywhere. They apparently have zero knowledge of materials science or anything else for that matter. I could fill a three ring binder with their faults, bad engineering, bad construction, inferior materials and on and on. I will give you one of hundreds of examples. My Elkhart Travel Trailer, has aluminum window frames, and aluminum channels for the gutters, Aluminum strips to join the roof to the front, aluminum all along the length of the RV joining the bottom fairing to the fiberglass sides. This would be OK EXCEPT the bozo’s in Elkhart (THOR) haven’t learned that steel screws put through and in contact with aluminum, rust, swell up, and break owing to electrolytic corrosion. One NEVER NEVER NEVER puts steel screws into aluminum. When the screws corrode as they must, (this is science), they split the wood they are anchored to, they shear off, and water, every RV’er worst enemy, gets into the seams and RV. This is just ignorant, stupid, and utterly unacceptable. Electrolytic corrosion has been well known since aluminum came on the scene in about 1900 or earlier. This is no small matter, rust, bust, and leak courtesy the bozo’s in Elkhart.
Kirk Demadaler says
This isn’t really the whole truth behind the failures……
The galvanic action between coated mild steel and aluminum isn’t bad at all and this is the way it’s been done for many decades. It’s easy to look up the galvanic activity charts to confirm exactly where they fall….you will notice that stainless steel and aluminum don’t play well together though.
So what did happen to make this failure? Long story short the EPA made everyone take out all the coatings that worked well for so many years and they were replaced with “safe alternatives” that just plain don’t work nearly as good as the previous coatings did. You just can’t purchase the screws that had the coatings that used to work so well and it really shows in how short the time is before the new ones just rust out….You can buy much more expensive alternative hardware but you can guess why they don’t do this. The fact though is that the trailers they build today just won’t be around for very long as they are made from Camel Poop and Glitter…..don’t even go into how long the appliances last even in the super high priced rigs there total crap like all the rest.
So what’s a fellow to do? Buy old fix it up yourself and enjoy for many years to come….think 70’s – 90’s Airstreams and others.
Just my two cents….and darn worth what you paid for it.
Albert Panzer says
You do mean the JUNK MANUFACTURING capital of the world!!!!!!!
Tim Kilbride says
These critical comments are not that far off-base. Most RV’s are built for use 4 to 5 times a year on weekends. I repeatedly hear complaints about shoddy workmanship on Recreational Vehicles. The Amish themselves build some of the most beautiful barns and farmhouses I have seen. But the young men and women who have to build so many units a day have to literally run from place to place when constructing an impossible number of RV’s a day. Materials are light on purpose for easy of towing, but they often use poor quality materials purchased in bulk and thrown together because of impossible demands on Quantity vs Quality. Jayco now Thor made a lot of mistakes but backed their products for at least two years. They were good about fixing things under warranty. But when you are traveling in far out of the way places it’s no fun spending your vacation at RV dealers when they could have put in higher rated slide-out motors in the first place, for instance. We love our rig now and love the RV lifestyle, but it could have been a lot smoother in the first place.
Yvonne Taylor says
We purchased a travel trailer to have fun in but have spent most of our time trying to get it fixed. Everytime we plan a vacation something goes wrong with the travel trailer. This has not been a happy experience for us. For the price we paid for our rig we could have traveled for the rest of our life and then some & not been worried about something going wrong.