Dec 232010

The RV world lost an icon yesterday, when Joe Peterson, co-founder of the Escapees RV Club, passed away. I have been privileged to meet Joe many times over the years at Escapades and other RV events, and he was always a cheerful, friendly, outgoing gentleman.

When Joe and his lovely wife Kay founded the Escapees, way back in 1978, they had no idea what they had started. Over the years they nurtured and guided their little organization until it grew into one of the largest, and in my opinion the very best, RV clubs around. The legacy Joe has left is something the rest of us will enjoy and benefit from for years to come.

This is a loss for all of us, but a double hit for the family; I’m told that Joe’s son-in-law, Bud Carr, also lost his father just a week or so ago. Please keep them in your prayers.  

We had visitors yesterday! Jim and Dee Walter, who are staying at an RV park a couple of miles up the road, stopped in to say hello. We had a good time talking about the RV lifestyle, sharing a joke or two, and comparing our favorite apps on our Droid smart phones.

After Jim and Dee left, Terry and I drove a mile or so south of the campground to Pioneer Park, a county park that includes a small museum, campground, and boat launch on the Peace River. Here are a couple of pictures, one upriver and one downriver. If we get a chance to paddle our kayaks while we’re here, I think we’ll use the launch at Pioneer Park, because the one at our campground is much steeper and looks like it would be harder to use.

Peace River from Pioneer Park

Peace River from Pioneer Park 2

We booked two weeks here at Peace River, and while the campground is okay, the town doesn’t have much to offer. Yesterday we had dinner at the Panda Chinese buffet, and it being a small town, we didn’t have high expectations. As it turned out, we were still disappointed! If we could change our stay and get back into the Orlando Thousand Trails, we’d leave and head back up that way. There’s a lot more to do and see in that area. We’d like to get some paddling in while we’re here, but the weather report for next week is looking pretty grim, so I don’t know if we’ll get to do that or not.   

I mentioned smart phone apps above,and if you have an iPhone or iPad, you might be interested in a brand new app that the nice folks at Technomadia just brought out, called Coverage?. This is a simple app that lets you see where you can expect to get 3G and roaming signals in the continental U.S. for AT&T, Sprint, Verizon and T-Mobile. Yes, you can go online to the different carriers’ websites and get the same info, but Coverage? allows you to do so offline, wherever you happen to be.

These are the same folks who put out the excellent State Lines app, which no RVer should be without. Check out Coverages?, I think you’ll find it useful. They also publish an e-book titled Answers to the Common Excuses not to Travel Full-Time that I have heard good things about. I need to order a copy and check it out.

One final thought on technical things before I close. I have been having  e-mail problems for quite a while now. Sometimes e-mails never get to me,  other times they show up, but disappear from the server before I can read them, or ones I have saved for future reference go missing. 

While we were in Fort Lauderdale last week, Chris Guld from Geeks on Tour, switched me over to G-mail, but since our websites are still hosted on Yahoo for the time being, our e-mail first goes through the Yahoo servers, and that is where we seem to have the problem. So if you e-mailed me and I didn’t get back to you, please try again. Also, I lost some e-mails from folks who asked us to stop by while we were in their area, and I had no way to re-contact them. My apologies.

Bad Nick has been busy posting a new Bad Nick Blog titled Armed Citizens Fighting Back. Check it out and leave a comment.

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Nick Russell

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  8 Responses to “We Have Lost An Icon”

  1. That looks like a great place to kayak. Might have to head down there!

  2. It was always a pleasure to go to the Escapees seminars given by Joe and Kay Peterson. We all shall miss Joe. If you haven’t heard Kay, please go to her next seminar. She and Joe knew RVing from the old’s days and it was fun to listen to them. Hear Kay before she to is gone. Each person we lose is like a book lost forever. The family is in our prayers.

  3. We never met the Petersons, but we received a personal Christmas card from Kay last week, thanking us for a contribution to the Care center, which I view to be one of the best eldercare institutions on the planet. It seems almost spookey to hear a few days later of her husband’s death. Condolences to Kay, if she reads this.

  4. Karen and I got to renew our friendship with Joe and Kay again this year in Goshen, In. Their leadership and love of our lifestyle will remain a guide for so many for years to come. Our hugs and thoughts are with Kay and the famly.

  5. We were shocked to hear about the passing of Joe Peterson. We got to know the Peterson thru the Escapade a few years ago. he will be missed. Our condolences to the family.

  6. The Pioneer Restaurant down the road from you is a great place to eat. Also you are not far from Sebring and there is a wonderful buffet called Homer’s, where we are going for Christmas Day lunch. And you are about 45 miles from the highest point in Florida, called Bok Tower. We live here in the town called Lake Wales. Our sympathy to the Peterson family.

  7. I heard about Joe’s passing thru Nick’s posting on the SKP Discussion Forum and it has become a thread where you can post your condolences to the family: In another SKP forum, Sharon DeRosario posted the email she received from Susie and Dennie Orr, Chapter and BOF Directors: “We wanted to let you know that Joe Peterson suffered an aneurysm this morning and passed away around 2 pm today [Wednesday].” Joe and Kay certainly influenced many of us to join the RV lifestyle and to adopt the SKP motto of caring and sharing. Joe will be missed. Condolences to the Petersons, Carrs and the entire extended SKP family.

    Nick, are you planning to have as your primary personal or business account? Maybe having two accounts would allow you to start transitioning away from Yahoo and you could start publishing the new email address(es). I keep a Yahoo email address for new online business contacts until I decide if I want to continue to receive their messages and promotions. I have found Yahoo gets more SPAM than gets to my folders than gmail does. Better filters at the head-in??

  8. Howdy Nick,
    One reason I began looking at the RV life was because of reading the Peterson’s articles for years in the different publications.. They sounded so real and down to earth and I never got the chance to tell them in person how they influenced me.. My prayers and
    condolences to the whole Peterson clan.. May the Lord be with you and give you comfort.

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