V is for Van Horn, Texas
We have stopped in Van Horn, Texas two times now. On our way east I wrote:
At the end of day 2 of travel, Dreamy, Mr. Dreamy (hereinafter referred to as "The Dreamers") and the two dogs found themselves in Van Horn, TX, looking for a grocery store. Since the RV was still winterized, and since temperatures below freezing were expected that evening... even in southern Texas, we needed additional fresh water. We remain puzzled as to how the 2050 residents (US Census Bureau, 2011) of Van Horn acquire food. We discovered no less than 18 hotels, 3 campgrounds, 6 gas stations, and finally, we found what seemed to be the only grocery store in town. They have a captive audience, for sure!
We stopped in Van Horn again on our way home, and stayed at the same RV park. It is convenient to the highway. The sites are flat and the interior roads are wide. Everything is clean and neat. We really do like the campground. It is under new management and they are really working hard to update the facility. The campground has a story that I found a bit amusing... and sad at the same time.
It seems that the campground was put up for sale sometime in the recent past. One of the full-time residents in the campground told his brother that he should consider purchasing it. He explained that the campground, with 100 sites, was full just about every night. (Doing the math, at $25 per site... that's a chunk of change rolling in!) Mr. Brother went ahead and purchased the campground, figuring his full-time resident brother would manage the property. Mr. Resident did not want that much responsibility, so Mr. Brother hired some folks to manage the campground. He did an excellent job of that, as the management bends over backwards to help visitors and they are obviously working very hard at making improvements to the campground. But sadly, when ownership was transferred, the stream of overnight visitors slowed to a trickle. It seems that the previous owner/manager was not really managing the campground at all. He merely put a sign on the office door with instructions for folks to pick a campsite and drop their money in a box. With no oversight, people could simply pull in and camp, and skip the step about the money, and not even bother to honor the honor system. Word got out, and the campground became a very popular overnight stop for the
budget conscious cheap dishonest camper! Sad, but apparently true! Those opportunistic campers no longer stop at the campground, and the paying crowd is a lot smaller than Mr. Brother was led to believe by his well meaning sibling.
So, if you find yourself in Van Horn, TX...
the western-most town in the US that is in the central time zone,
(this may be their only claim to fame)
if you are not planning to stay at any one of the 18 hotels,
and need a campground...
swing by the Mountain View RV Park and give them a chance!