Welcome Shelter Cove To The Highway West Family

August 21, 2015

Shelter Cove RV Resort & Marina is the newest addition to the Highway West Vacations family and we couldn’t be more excited to welcome such a well-loved and beautiful campground to our growing portfolio. As the new park on the block, we wanted to take a moment to introduce you to Christopher Gagnon, the new General Manager for Shelter Cove. We asked Christopher a few questions regarding his prior experience in the industry and the exciting plans in store for the resort.

How long have you been in the RV/hospitality industry?

This year I celebrate my 40th year! I started in the hospitality industry when I was 13 years old in a dock side family restaurant in Stony Brook NY, as a pot washer, not a dishwasher but a pot washer! I don’t believe I was actually supposed to be working at that age but times were very different then.

In my first “career life” it was all about food and service. I have worked in privately owned and franchised restaurants, country and yacht clubs, catering halls, hotels, and resorts for about 28 years. I have been a personal chef and owned an off-premise catering company and restaurant. I personally operated a small business management company and was a trainer through the National Education Foundation. My job and goal was and still is to educate and continue to be educated. I instructed courses in hospitality such as customer focus, service and safety in the workplace just to mention a few.

I just came from Thousand Trails, a national Camping Program were I held the position of Resort Manager at their Seaside, Oregon location, their busiest property in the Pacific Northwest.

I would say hospitality is just a way of life for me!

What do you look forward to most about being part of the Highway West Vacations team?

I am thrilled to now be a part of such a progressive people oriented company! Yes business is business but the program that is being created by this up and coming RV Resort company led by a great leadership team is fantastic! It is focused on the customer, bringing the properties up to a higher standard and educating the staff and supplying the tools to meet these goals. Did you relocate for the job? If so, where did you move from?

Seaside, Oregon! From the ocean to the mountains, all in Oregon. My family and I are very excited to have this adventure presented to us!

What are some of your favorite things to do while camping?

The outdoors in general: nature, family, talking, making friends, having cookouts, campfires and s’mores of course.

What are some of your favorite features at Shelter Cove?

That it’s located in such a beautiful part of our country. It’s very peaceful but energizing! I love the forest, the lake is amazing, and fishing, wow! You can just feel the rich history that has taken place on this property itself and in the surrounding areas. The mix on the property: log cabins, wooded RV spaces and boats.

What are your thoughts on the legacy that the previous owners left behind?

Jim & Trula really created something so very, very special here! They had a vision and their 19 years of extremely hard work and their desire to exceed the customers’ expectations while having fun along the way, shows in how the guests, staff, and local community feel about them. Having worked in the hospitality industry now for 40 years, I’ll say to you that you don’t always find a team of talent that have the passion and understanding for hospitality and service ingrained in them all that often!

What are your goals for the future of Shelter Cove?

I personally, as does Highway West Vacations, want to carry on this already rich and long standing legacy. All the predecessors that I have been hearing about who have run this property, not just Jim and Trula, have given something to its great history. We are now the fifth owners of this property in 50 years and I have been fortunate to already have spoken to families that come here and all 4 generations are sitting around the campfire and speaking to me and telling me tales about the rich history here. I want us to carry on by adding our own positive contributions and making great memories for the future generations!

What renovations or upgrades are planned for the resort?

Highway West Vacations assessed the property carefully prior to its purchase, so this list is a long one. To name a few, we are in the process of upgrading all the cabins with new mattresses, bedding, small wares, and as needed all of the appliances. We are in the beginning stages of repairing, upgrading and hopefully expanding the moorage program. Next year, you will see the addition of rentals that include canoes, kayaks, paddle boards and maybe even a few small two person sunfishes for those who like to sail. We are already in the process of replacing a majority of the existing boat rental fleet. New showers and laundry facilities are in the production stage and we look forward to their arrival. Our own laundry facilities are also getting an upgrade. In just a few weeks, we will take delivery of our new mobile food trailer the “Hook & Talon” and everyone one is very excited about that. We are working as quickly as possible to make immediate improvements now and we anticipate achieving our goals for the larger projects by the start of next season!

Welcome Shelter Cove To The Highway West Family! For more information on Shelter Cove RV Resort & Marina, please visit http://www.highwaywestvacations.com/shelter-cove-resort-marina/.


Back to the Blog
Share your story

We are inspired by those who stay at our parks. We invite you to share your vacation stories with us.

SUBMIT YOUR STORY