By: Jeff Crider, Woodall's Campground Magazine
CampCalNOW RV Park and Campground Alliance President Dyana Kelley traveled to Orangeland RV Park over Memorial Day weekend with a teardrop trailer to celebrate the park’s 50th anniversary, according to a press release.
While there Kelley promoted the travel planning website Camp-California.com.
Kelley celebrated Orangeland’s 50th anniversary with current and former Orangeland employees and guests, many of whom traveled to Orange, Calif., specifically to celebrate the park’s anniversary. Park owners on hand for the event included 102-year-old Virginia Welton. Virginia and her husband, Eldredge H. Welton, opened the park on Memorial Day 1972. Also, on hand were Virginia’s three children, Cindy Wimbish, Steve Welton and Janis Beghtol, along with several grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
“It was a really fun weekend,” Kelley said. “Orangeland had a barbecue on Saturday night for current and former residents, guests and employees. They also did a raffle and served ice cream. On Sunday, we celebrated with a taco truck lunch and more raffle prizes.”
Kelley donated two Camp California Coleman camping chairs to the raffle, one of which was won by Mrs. Welton’s great grandson, Jude. On Monday, they served coffee and donuts and had a Memorial Day celebration at the flagpole presided over by former employee and pastor Steve Durrett. Steve took the time to thank members of the armed forces for their service to our country. Several guests and residents were honored.
It was important that each guest feel special, noted the release. Large 50th-anniversary gift bags filled with goodies, hats, t-shirts and commemorative coffee mugs were distributed as well.
Located just under four miles from Disneyland, Orangeland is a unique RV park with more than 100 citrus trees on site, including navel oranges, Valencia oranges, blood oranges, mandarin oranges, tangerines, ruby red grapefruit, white grapefruit, as well as lemons and limes. The fruit is so plentiful that the park allows guests to pick as much as they want during their stay. Fruit maps and pickers are available at the office.
Built on the site of a historic working orange grove, Orangeland harkens back to the early 1900s, when citrus packers marketed their produce with beautifully painted citrus packing labels that promoted Southern California’s sunny winter weather and snowcapped mountains as much as they promoted the citrus itself. Office buildings, shopping malls and housing tracts now stand where many of Southern California’s citrus groves used to be. So, in that sense, Orangeland is like a retreat into Southern California’s past, combined with a heated swimming pool, Jacuzzi, exercise room and other amenities that make the park a popular destination.
In addition to celebrating Orangeland’s 50th anniversary, Kelley used her visit to promote Camp-California.com speaking with park guests, and passing out campground directories and swag items with the Camp-California.com logo. Kelley invited guests to check out her teardrop trailer, which she decorated with Camp-California.com items.
Kelley was also able to use her visit to Orangeland to view some of the earliest known historical records of the association that has served California’s campground owners for the past 48 years. Eldredge Welton, Orangeland’s co-founder, who died in 2012, was a longtime campground industry pioneer who co-founded the California Travel Parks Association (CTPA), which is currently known as CampCalNOW RV Park & Campground Alliance. Welton was CTPA’s fourth president, beginning his term in 1979.
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