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February 20, 2006


This year, to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Good Sam Club, we will be sending you a feature each month reflecting on how things were when the Good Sam Club began in 1966 and how they've changed throughout the years. This month we are looking at how RV parks have changed.

(Ventura, Calif.) - The pursuit of freedom, adventure and simplicity has drawn travelers to the idea of leisure camping since its inception. In the early 1900s, wealthy adventurers like Henry Ford and Thomas Edison packed their cars with food and clothes, drove until they found a scenic spot and set up camp.

To view this press release via the Internet, simply click on the link below or copy and paste to your browser:

http://www.affinitygroup.com/newsoutput.cfm?ID=1063243

To download a copy of The Good Sam Club 40th logo, please go to the end of the text copy of the release for a link to that logo.

Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.

Thanks,

Julie Calzone
President/CEO
Calzone & Associates
337.235.2924 ext. 3 jcalzone@calzone.com
337.237.0556 (fax) www.calzone.com
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 20, 2006

RV Parks -- THEN & NOW -- Celebrating 40 Years of RVing

This year, to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Good Sam Club, we will be sending you a feature each month reflecting on how things were when the Good Sam Club began in 1966 and how they've changed throughout the years. This month we are looking at how RV parks have changed.

(Ventura, Calif.) - The pursuit of freedom, adventure and simplicity has drawn travelers to the idea of leisure camping since its inception. In the early 1900s, wealthy adventurers like Henry Ford and Thomas Edison packed their cars with food and clothes, drove until they found a scenic spot and set up camp.

Known as "auto gypsies," their photos were splashed across newspapers, which glamorized their liberating travels. The fascination with the freedom and affordability of camping adventure grew - and so did the number of campers.

By the 1960s, Americans were head-over-heels about RV camping. Vacationers could drive longer distances and travel more frequently. But public campgrounds were few and far between. Entrepreneurs began offering land for campers to stay: hot showers, clean restrooms, a small store and a patch of grass cost $1.75 a night. Now there is a system of RV parks and campgrounds throughout North America that number over 12,000 with an average of $25/night for a campsite rental.

Although the basic principle behind an RV vacation remains as simple today as it did 40 years ago - finding a clean and secure place to stop and "set a spell" - selecting the right campground is not as simple as it once was.

According to The American Camper: Profiles and Perspectives, with over 29 million RV owners and active campers spending an average of $60/day (as a family) for 26.5 nights per year, the contribution to the United States economy from this segment of the population is over $20 billion annually.

Fifty percent of both RV owners and active campers have taken trips with extended family, including grandparents and grandchildren. Boomers and Matures comprise nearly 90 percent of RV owners, while Boomers alone make up nearly 50 percent of active campers.

Amenities sought after in both RV parks and campgrounds include larger sites, high ratings in a national camping directory, attractive landscaping and cooking areas, and quick check-in.

In 2006, the Trailer Life Directory lists 12,214 RV parks. Along with location, contact details, facilities listings and pricing information - including citing those parks that give Good Sam members a 10% discount - the Trailer Life Directory includes a three-tiered rating system using a scale from 1 to 10 (with a rating of 10 the highest) to assist RVers in making a decision. The Trailer Life Directory is the official campground and RV Park directory for the Good Sam Club and lists more than 1,850 Good Sam Park discount locations for club members.

Experienced RVers visit the sites and rate them accordingly. Each private park is rated on completeness and quality of the facilities, cleanliness and physical characteristics of restrooms and showers, visual appeal and environmental quality.

Today's RVers are a diverse group and are looking for a variety of amenities from campgrounds - from the young professionals searching for a rustic retreat, to large families who need to keep the kids entertained every waking moment, to the snowbirds hunting for a place to call home for the winter.

Before Norma and David Wright took their first RV trip from Texas to Florida, they took great pains to sift through the Trailer Life Directory listings and map out the campgrounds that met their requirements.

David, an avid angler, fishes for campgrounds listing stocked fishing facilities. For Norma, keeping connected on the road is most important.

"I have to check my e-mail regularly," says Norma. "Finding parks with modem hookups is a high priority for me."

Unlike the early campers, who primarily vacationed to "get away from it all," many RVers today want to stay in touch. Many campgrounds now provide web access. The 2006 Trailer Life Directory features "Internet Access at a Glance" to help web buffs find facilities that can keep them connected.

Although the amenities and advances of campgrounds have changed dramatically during the past 40 years, the reasons that campers frequent them is the same today as it has always been - the pursuit of freedom, adventure and simplicity while getting a taste of the Great Outdoors.

Coming in March: RVers - THEN & NOW.

About the Good Sam Club
The Good Sam Club, www.goodsamclub.com is the world's largest recreational vehicle (RV) owners' organization with nearly 1 million member families. Founded in 1966, the Club offers its members a wide variety of services, including RV insurance, extended warranty on RVs (the Continued Service Plan), Emergency Road Service, RV financing, a Good Sam Credit Card and Life & Health Insurance, as well as discounts at parks, campgrounds and RV events. Good Sam members also receive a subscription to Highways, the Club's popular RV travel magazine. The Club also represents more than 2,000 local RV chapters designed to bring RVers together from similar geographic regions for group camping excursions. Extremely committed to its RV members as well as to the environment, the Club is the founder of the annual National Cleanup Day program and an advocate of public land access, Adopt-A-Highway programs and Adopt-A-Park programs, to name a few. The Good Sam Club is headquartered in Ventura, California, and is a subsidiary of the Affinity Group, Inc.

About Trailer Life Directory
The Trailer Life Directory Campground RV Parks & Services Directory is a one-stop-shopping resource for complete at-a-glance campground and RV park information. The TL Directory lists more than 1,850 Good Sam discount locations. The Directory has more than 12,000 RV parks & campgrounds, Internet-friendly locations, local tourist attractions as well as inspected and rated campgrounds for the United States and parts of Canada and Mexico. Visit www.trailerlifedirectory.com for more information on TL Directory, the TL Directory Campground Finder on CD-ROM and other AGI publications.

Contact:
Sue Bray, Executive Director/Good Sam Club
800.765.1912, ext. 440; sbray@affinitygroup.com

Julie Calzone, CEO/Calzone & Associates
337.235.2924, ext. 3; jcalzone@calzone.com

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