Atlanta, Southeast Region Top Mosquito Cities List

The Atlanta area tops pest control leader Orkin's list of Top Mosquito Cities for the third year in a row, according to a release issued by the Atlanta-based pest control services and protection company.

Atlanta is followed on the list by Chicago and Washington, D.C. Eight cities in the Southeast are included in the ranking – more than any other region.

"Mosquitoes are a major health concern during the summer," said Ron Harrison, Ph.D., entomologist and Orkin technical services director. "Mosquitoes are known carriers of several diseases, including Zika virus, Chikungunya virus and West Nile virus, so people across the United States – whether their city is on the list or not – need to take precaution to help prevent mosquito bites."

The list ranks cities by the number of mosquito customers served by Orkin in 2015:

1.    Atlanta
2.    Chicago
3.    Washington, D.C.
4.    Detroit
5.    New York (+9 gain from the 2014 list)
6.    Dallas-Ft. Worth (+2)
7.    Nashville, Tenn. (+3)
8.    Charlotte, N.C. (+1)
9.    Raleigh-Durham, N.C. (-3)
10.  Boston (-3)
11.  Memphis, Tenn.
12.  Houston (-7)
13.  Miami-Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.
14.  Norfolk-Portsmouth-Newport News, Va.
15.  Grand Rapids-Kalamazoo-Battle Creek, Mich. (-3)
16.  Greenville-Spartanburg, S.C., Asheville, N.C. (+2)
17.  Albany-Schenectady-Troy, N.Y. (+2)
18.  Cleveland-Akron-Canton (-1)
19.  Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn. (-4)
20.  Phoenix
21.  Richmond-Petersburg, Va. (-7)
22.  Tampa-St. Petersburg, Fla.
23.  Hartford-New Haven, Conn.
24.  Orlando-Daytona Beach-Melbourn, Fla.
25.  Charleston, S.C.
26.  Mobile-Pensacola, Fla.
27.  Indianapolis
28.  Flint-Saginaw-Bay City, Mich.
29.  Bangor, Maine
30.  Philadelphia
31.  West Palm Beach-Ft. Pierce, Fla.
32.  Columbus, Ohio
33.  Lansing, Mich.
34.  Knoxville, Tenn.
35.  Ft. Wayne, Ind.
36.  Tulsa, Okla.
37.  Baltimore, Md.
38.  Greensboro-High Pt.-Winston-Salem, N.C.
39.  Burlington, Vt.-Plattsburgh, N.Y.
40.  Portland-Auburn, Ore.
41.  Buffalo, N.Y.
42.  Shreveport, La.
43.  New Orleans
44.  LaFayette, La.
45.  Cincinnati, Ohio
46.  Myrtle Beach-Florence, S.C.
47.  Birmingham, Ala.
48.  Austin, Texas
49.  Kansas City, Mo.
50.  Macon, Ga.

As temperatures increase, so will the threat of mosquito-borne illnesses like Zika virus. While June, July and August are the prime months for mosquito activity, mosquito season can begin as early as March in the southern part of the United States where temperatures are warmer. Mosquitoes affect people in every state in the U.S.

Most Common Mosquitoes in the United States:   

Aedes Mosquitoes: The most common types of Aedes mosquitoes are commonly referred to as Asian tiger or yellow fever mosquitoes. They can carry and spread Zika virus, Chikungunya virus and Dengue virus. They are most common in the southern United States. Aedes mosquitoes are aggressive daytime biters and also bite at dusk and dawn.

Culex Mosquitoes: These mosquitoes are in every state and can carry and spread West Nile virus. They are most common at dusk and dawn.

Anopheles Mosquitoes: In addition to spreading Malaria, which has been considered eradicated from the United States, these mosquitoes can transmit dog heart worm and other viruses. They have been found in every state and are most active at dusk and dawn.

Zika virus has become a major concern over the past year after thousands of cases were reported in South and Central America, the Caribbean and American Samoa, and more than 190 travel-related cases were reported in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

"There is no vaccine for Zika virus, Chikungunya virus or West Nile virus. The only protection is preventing mosquito bites, so anyone who spends time outdoors during the spring and summer months needs to take precaution by eliminating standing water where mosquitoes can breed," said Harrison.

Orkin recommends the following tips to help protect against mosquito-borne illnesses:

Eliminate Standing Water in Yard

  • Remove standing water from gutters, buckets, toys and other containers, as mosquitoes can breed in just a few inches of standing water.
  • Change water weekly in bird baths, fountains, potted plants and any containers that hold standing water.
  • Keep pool water treated and circulating.

Prevent Mosquito Bites

  • Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants.
  • Use EPA-registered mosquito repellents containing one of the following active ingredients:  DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, para-menthane-diol or IR3535. 

Eliminate Entry Points

  • Use air-conditioning when possible.
  • Close gaps around windows and in walls.
  • Repair and use window and door screens to help prevent entry.

Source: Press Release

Driving Simulator App puts you behind the wheel of a Big Rig



No-Cost, Ultra-Realistic 3D “Driving School 2016” by Ovilex Soft Puts Users Behind the Wheel of a Car, Truck or Bus to Earn a License & Showcase Skills

Driving School 2016 features: meticulously detailed interiors, tilt-able touch steering and fully functional buttons, a realistic damage system, lifelike engine sounds, realistic weather and environments, over 50 challenging levels, manual transmission option, a free ride multi-player mode, and more. The new no-cost app is available from the App Store and Google Play.

Worldwide fans of Ovilex Soft’s astonishingly realistic and massively entertaining 3D driving simulator apps – including Bus Simulator 3D, Truck Driver 3D, Train Driver 15, and several more – can now feast their senses on the latest and arguably the greatest addition to the roster: Driving School 2016.

In Driving School 2016, users virtually climb behind the wheel of an ultra-realistic car, truck or bus, in an effort to earn their license for any/each respective vehicle type. To succeed, users will need to demonstrate superior driving skills across multiple environments, such as cities, country roads, highways, deserts, mountains, and more. They’ll also need to navigate various weather conditions, and tackle night and day driving.

As with all of Ovilex Soft’s creations, Driving School 2016 is as awesome to behold as it is to experience. The meticulously detailed interiors are superb, and include tilt-able touch steering and fully functional buttons. There’s also a realistic damage system that – just like real life – doesn’t forgive drivers who get too close to cars, barriers, or other obstacles.

Other Driving School 2016 special – or rather, spectacular – features includes: 
  • Over 50 unique levels that feature various challenges and degrees of difficulty
  • The option to go for a recreational spin or play with friends in a fantastic free ride multi-player mode
  • The option to choose manual transmission, complete with incredibly responsive and lifelike clutch and stick shift
  • Controller support for playing with a Gamepad (perfect for AndroidTV)
  • Realistic engine sounds
  • Online leaderboards and achievements
In addition, users can visit Olivex Soft’s Facebook page – which has over 200,000 “Likes” – to request new maps and vehicles.

“We heard from thousands of people last year that School Driving 3D was the best driving game they’d ever played,” commented Marusac Alexandru of Ovilex Soft. “And so for the last several months, we’ve been working harder than ever to create something that raises the bar even higher. We’re very pleased with Driving Simulator 2016, and the extremely positive feedback we’re hearing so far tells us that our users are just as excited. They’re particularly impressed with the option to choose a manual transmission and enjoy the free ride multi-player mode!”

Driving Simulator 2016, the ultra-realistic driving simulator app that puts users behind the wheel of a car, truck or bus to earn their license and show off their skills, is available now for iOS devices from the App Store at

About Ovilex Soft 
Ovilex Soft is a new games company that focuses on making the best simulators on Google Play and the App Store. With a variety of planned future projects and continuous attention to quality control, the company will became an important developer within the simulator/racing game market.
Olivex Soft also helps ensure the quality of their products by keeping contact directly with their large audience of games players via the company’s site forum at: http://www.ovilex.com/forum/

Source: Press Release

Rollin' On TV video: Touring the U.P. in a Jayco Melbourne, and a look at the Nissan TITAN XD



On this week's program (#2016-05), we join Jeff and Pam Johnston in a new Jayco Melbourne, as they take us to the Michigan U.P. and check out this very popular RV destination. Also, the show takes a quick look at the new Nisan TITAN XD diesel model truck.

About Rollin' On TV
Now in its fifth year of production, Rollin' On TV has become one of the leading RV lifestyle television programs on the air today, reaching over 30 million homes on both cable and satellite TV. The weekly program is also available online. For more information, visit www.rollinontv.com.

Tow Vehicle Spotlight: 2016 Nissan TITAN XD creates ‘new class’ of full-size pickup



Commercial strength components, 555 lb-ft Cummins 5.0l V8 turbo diesel and heavy-duty attitude in the all-new Nissan TITAN XD

Featuring a Cummins 5.0l V8 turbo diesel, the 2016 Nissan TITAN XD shakes up the highly competitive full-size pickup segment in the United States and Canada with a bold design and capabilities that stake out a unique position in the segment between traditional heavy-duty and light-duty entries.

Called the “XD,” it offers some of the effortless towing and hauling of the larger, more expensive heavy-duty trucks – including an available maximum towing capacity of 12,314 pounds and maximum payload capacity of 2,091 pounds (when properly equipped) – yet has fuel-efficiency and affordability closer to a half-ton pickup.

“The full-size truck market is the toughest market to crack in the entire industry, with so many outstanding products available,” said Fred Diaz, division vice president and general manager, North America Trucks and Light Commercial Vehicles, Nissan North America Inc. “This new Nissan TITAN XD is designed to offer buyers something the others don’t – combining outstanding towing and hauling capabilities and noteworthy fuel economy while towing and hauling. It also offers excellent ride comfort and handling, and the features and amenities that real working truck owners want.”

The XD is the first of a new family of Nissan TITAN full-size pickups. The new TITAN XD Crew Cab, with its powerful Cummins 5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel, is the first of three cab configurations, two frame sizes, three powertrain offerings and five grade levels to be available once the full TITAN lineup is complete.

Base MSRP of a TITAN XD equipped with a Cummins 5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel engine is $40,290.

The all-new TITAN XD, like the first-generation Titan, was developed with core Nissan planning, design, engineering and manufacturing teams contributing from Tennessee, California, Michigan, Arizona and Mississippi. The TITAN XD’s diesel engine is sourced from Cummins Inc. in Indiana. The lead designer and nearly four-dozen engineers involved in TITAN XD also worked on the original 2004 TITAN development.




Cummins 5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel – Power, Durability and MPG
“A new class of truck also demands a new class of engine. Like the TITAN XD itself, the new Cummins 5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel fills the space between more expensive big bore diesels and less capable smaller displacement diesels,” said Diaz. “And more than just power and torque, this engine is refined, starts fast and is responsive and quiet. It’s also lightweight and offers clean emissions.”

The TITAN XD’s Cummins diesel is the first commercial application of the new Cummins M2 two-stage turbo system, which helps reduce traditional turbo-lag through precision balancing between high-pressure and low-pressure turbos. The patented Rotary Turbine Control provides solid performance across the powerband and manages exhaust gas temperatures.

The new engine also features a Bosch HPCR fuel system to deliver precise fuel control and multiple injections per combustion stroke, which helps increase efficiency and reduce traditional “diesel clatter.” And, the advanced, maintenance-free Bosch ceramic glow plugs provide quick engine starts, even in extreme low temperatures.

Another key advantage of the new Cummins diesel design is that it provides maximum durability and power in a lightweight package. Weight was reduced by building the cylinder block out of compacted graphite iron (CGI), which is stronger and lighter than traditional iron.

Other lightweight engine components were added, including high-strength aluminum-alloy heads and composite valve covers. The CGI block, along with the dual overhead camshafts, also contributes to the engine’s excellent noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) characteristics.

As a result of all these advanced systems, the new Cummins 5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel is more capable than small displacement diesel engine offerings and less expensive than big bore heavy-duty diesels.

It is also designed to be fun to drive, with about 45 percent more torque at cruising speed than similar-sized gasoline V8 engines. And, its low revving powerband requires less downshifting and provides more confidence while towing, as well as saving fuel whether towing or carrying heavy loads.

“Since the majority of full-size pickup owners drive more than 10,000 miles a year, fuel economy is also critical. TITAN XD’s Cummins diesel is expected to provide a projected 20 percent better fuel economy than a gasoline-powered V8 while towing full loads,” said Diaz.

Helping handle the power and torque of the engine is a heavy-duty 6-speed Aisin A466ND automatic transmission developed and tuned exclusively for the TITAN XD.

Towing and Hauling – Informed and In Control
TITAN XD has a maximum payload of 2,091 pounds (when properly equipped) and a maximum towing rating of 12,314 pounds (when properly equipped). It is also snow plow-capable.
Among the list of new available towing aids are an Integrated Trailer Brake Controller, Trailer Sway Control (TSC), Tow/Haul Mode with Downhill Speed Control and a Trailer Light Check system that allows one-person hook-up operation – checking turn signals, brake lights and running/clearance lights from inside the TITAN cab.

Also assisting trailer hook-ups is the TITAN XD’s available RearView Monitor with Trailer Guides, while the available Around View Monitor (AVM) provides a unique “bird’s eye” view of the surrounding area from front, rear and side cameras to help with parking and pulling in and out of tight spaces. The system also includes Moving Object Detection (MOD), which helps the driver detect moving objects such as vehicles, shopping carts or other large objects when backing out via an on-screen notification and warning chime.

Helping TITAN XD owners take advantage of its ample towing power are a range of available hitches – including an integrated gooseneck hitch engineered into the frame and easily accessible in the bed. Gooseneck hitches put the load in front of the rear axle, enhancing the ability to control the vehicle.

“In early trials held in sweltering Arizona – the testing ground for the new SAE J2807 towing standard– we put more than five tons in a gooseneck trailer and the TITAN XD performed with total confidence,” explained Diaz. The 2016 Nissan TITAN XD meets the new J2807 certification’s standards.

The new TITAN XD also includes a range of available advanced driving aids in addition to RearView Monitor and Around View Monitor with Moving Object Detection, including Blind Spot Warning (BSW), Front and Rear Sonar System and Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS).

Built from the Work Job Up with Commercial Strength
While the original Nissan Titan was known for its consumer-focused innovations, such as the Wide-Open rear doors, bedside storage compartment, factory spray-on bedliner and Utili-track Bed Channel System, the new-generation starts with a focus on commercial strength components – from the radiator to the rear axle and everything in between.

“TITAN XD is a truck that uniquely uses both technology and strength to add confidence to the completion of everyday work tasks,” said Diaz. “Half of all full-size truck owners tow more than 10 times a year, with a quarter of owners using them to haul tools, so we engineered TITAN XD’s toughness from the ground up.”

Nissan TITAN XD models are built on a unique frame and chassis to handle the Cummins diesel and Endurance V8 gas engines, as well as the truck’s expanded towing and payload potential. Starting with a durable, proven chassis design from Nissan Commercial Vehicles, the new fully boxed, full-length ladder frame is extensively reinforced and strengthened for use with the TITAN XD with added stiffness, vertical and lateral bending, and torsional rigidity. It also features an extended 151.6-inch wheelbase – about 20 inches longer than non-XD TITAN models.

To maximize stability, handling and ride comfort, TITAN XD uses a new heavy-duty, highly stable suspension design. The double-wishbone with stabilizer bar front suspension is reinforced and tuned for hard use and the rigid rear axle suspension utilizes hefty leaf springs and leaf bushings, along with twin-tube shock absorbers. The axle is a large purpose-built American Axle Manufacturing design.

The rear differential measures 9.84 inches with 3.5-inch axle tubes, while the front differential (4x4 models) measures 9.25 inches. Both are manufactured by American Axle. Also available is an Electronic Locking Rear Differential.

Hydraulic cab-mounts help isolate occupants from the advanced TITAN XD chassis. The new TITAN XD rides on 17-inch, 18-inch or 20-inch aluminum-alloy wheels with LT245/75R17, LT275/65R18 or LT265/60R20 tires for strong all-weather/all surface traction.

Braking is provided by a 4-wheel disc system with 14.2 x 1.5-inch front/14.4 x 1.2-inch rear ventilated discs front and rear with hydraulic power assist. The high brake fluid pressure generated by an electric pump assists brake pedal force for a confident feel.

Responsive steering is provided by a recirculating ball-type high-capacity steering system with parallel rod steering linkage to optimize steering effort characteristics, even under heavy axle weight and towing conditions.

Even the radiator’s heat radiation cooling capacity has been increased more than 25 percent (versus the previous TITAN) to help enhance performance and meet SAE J2807 compliance. TITAN XD engine capacity meets 12,000-plus pound tow requirements through use of the large radiator, air transmission cooler and large 23.6-inch engine cooling fan diameter.

A Big Cabin with a Bold and Commanding Presence
Trucks today are multi-functional, used as work and everyday vehicles – so the interior has to be multi-functional as well. The designers focused on enhanced utility and on making the interior easy to use through improved layout of switched, driver control and storage spaces.

Front storage has been increased 33 percent and rear storage 28 percent, for example, over the previous-generation Titan. New 2nd row underseat storage includes a locking lid for added security and the integrated foldout flat floor. The center console can hold a computer tablet with case or a 15-inch laptop.

All switches are now grouped by function type and location is based on frequency of use. Other convenient interior design features include seven assist grips, console-side map pockets, 12-volt and 120-volt power outlets (in addition to the bed), remote start* with climate control function, and Rockford Fosgate premium 12-speaker audio system. The special attention to detail even includes moving the glove compartment handle to the left hand side for easier access by the driver.

The TITAN XD also features a tilt and telescoping steering column with a standard column-mounted transmission shifter lever – a move that helps increase the visibility and usability of the center stack area. This also opened up the center console for additional storage and can fit a laptop in the center console without giving up rear cupholders and 2nd row climate control vents.

The premium grade instrument panel includes a combination of analog and digital gauges, along with a 5.0-inch color display, unique diesel monitoring and maintenance displays, and available NissanConnectSM with Navigation and Mobile Apps and NissanConnect Services with 7.0-inch color monitor (SiriusXM subscription required, sold separately).

As in other Nissan vehicles, the new TITAN XD offers seating that is out of this world – or at least inspired by NASA. The standard front and rear Zero Gravity seats help maximize posture positioning for enhanced comfort during long distance driving. Heating and cooling front sears are also available, along with a choice of water-repellant fabric or durable leather-appointments. Heated front and rear seats are available in both cloth and leather trim levels.

"While worksite-tough, the interior styling also projects a premium quality and style inspired by outdoor gear such as quilted hunting jackets," said Diaz. "In the new TITAN XD, power and comfort easily co-exist."

Special attention was also paid to reducing the intrusion of noise and vibration into the cabin. TITAN XD utilizes laminated front and rear side glass, the first full-size pickup to do so. Engine noise isolation and body sealing was also improved versus the previous generation TITAN design.

2016 TITAN XD Model Lineup 
The 2016 Nissan TITAN XD is available in five well-equipped trim levels – S, SV, PRO-4X, SL and Platinum Reserve. All are offered with a choice of 4x2 or 4x4 drive configurations, except for the PRO-4X model, which is available exclusively as a 4x4.

TITAN XD S models are equipped with a front manual split bench seat (40/20/40), flip-down center seat with armrest, dual cupholders and storage in the seat back and bottom. A total of six cupholders, plus eight bottle holders can be found throughout the truck. Audio and entertainment is provided via a 5.0-inch color display with AM/FM, CD player, AUX, USB, MP3 and RDS along with a USB connection port for iPod® interface and other compatible devices. Streaming audio via Bluetooth, Hands-free Text Messaging Assistant, NissanConnect with Mobile Apps and a 6-speaker audio system also come standard.

Features aimed at fleet and commercial customers include a standard map lamp, easy-clean vinyl floor and stain-resistant cloth seats with vinyl bolsters.

TITAN XD SV models add cloth seats (without vinyl bolster), standard floor carpeting, meter display control in the steering wheel, analog Fine Vision Meters, an off-road indicator and off-road menu in the Advanced Drive-Assist Display, SiriusXM Satellite Radio (SiriusXM subscription required, sold separately), an overhead console with sunglass holder, grocery hooks on the cushion backside, a customizable maintenance interval reminder, front sun visor with an illuminated vanity mirror with extension, glove box lamp and mood lighting.

SV grade exterior upgrades include a chrome/mesh grille with premium metallic paint, chrome outside door handles, side mirror turn signal lamps, LED lighting with Joule-type bulbs in the rear combination lamp, front tow hooks and power adjustable heated outside mirrors. Standard Trailer Sway Control helps make towing heavy loads more stable and less burdensome to the driver.

The off-road-oriented TITAN XD PRO-4X model comes trail-ready with 275/65/R18 BSW all-terrain off-road tires, 18x7.5-inch aluminum-alloy wheels featuring six lugs and a painted dark finish, Bilstein off-road shock absorbers, electronic locking rear differential, lower radiator skid plate with powder-coated silver paint and Hill Descent Control.

A trailer harness that can handle both 4-pin and 7-pin connectors is mounted on the rear bumper. A receiver hitch and hitch member also come standard with the PRO-4X trim.

PRO-4X exterior features include front fog lamps, automatic on-off headlights, LED projector headlamps with LED signature and halogen high-beam lights, manual headlamp levelizer, Nissan Intelligent Key with door handle request switch, black front tow hooks, two-tone paint on the bodyside, gloss metallic black paint on the grille surround and mesh grille, high-gloss gray front lower fascia and rear bumpers, and a bedside decal.

Interior features include front driver and passenger Captain's seats, driver 8-way power seat, driver power lumbar support, stain-resistant seat covering with a vinyl bolster and "PRO-4X" embroidery, leather-wrapped steering wheel with unique contrast stitching, metallic instrument panel finishers, PRO-4X-branded floor mats, contrast stitching on the center console lid, arm rest and instrument panel, dual zone auto air conditioner plus a digital display in the HVAC control, rear A/C vents, large center console box with soft-touch topped armrest, side pockets and rear cupholders – plus a configurable center console that encompasses a cell phone box, purse holder and removable cupholders with a chrome ring. The back of the console features a 110V power outlet, with a 12V power outlet located inside the console box. The PRO-4X model's rear seats, which can be folded flat, also contain tie-down hooks and a storage box with a removable divider and lockable lid.

PRO-4X also includes a wealth of technology, such as a "Follow Me Home" function, NissanConnect with Navigation, a 7.0-inch color touch-screen display, SiriusXM Traffic and Sirius Travel LinkTM (SiriusXM® subscription required, sold separately), Siri Eyes Free, Nissan Voice Recognition for navigation and audio, Blind Spot Warning (BSW), Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA) (late availability), RearView Monitor and rain-sensing wipers.

In addition, PRO-4X includes standard tow mirrors (manually extending and folding, with puddle lamps), Trailer Brake Controller, proximity activation for the puddle lamps, LED signature headlamps and cargo lamp, Trailer Light Check function (included on the key fob) and integrated gooseneck hitch.

The premium TITAN XD SL trim level features an interior distinguished by leather-appointed seats, heated driver and passenger seats, passenger-side 4-way power seat, power tilt and telescopic steering, memory function for both the seat and the tilt/telescoping steering wheel and wood in-mold film instrument panel finishers.

The SL grade exterior offers auto dimming outside mirrors, 265/60R20 BSW tires and 20x7.5-inch painted aluminum-alloy wheels, chrome outside mirrors and door handles, removable aero front bumper spoiler, gloss chrome grille surround, satin chrome mesh grille, chrome front and lower fascias, chrome rear bumpers, four front and four rear parking sensors, power-sliding back glass, proximity-activated puddle lamps and LED signature headlights. Step rails are also available as an accessory.

SL technology features include a Rockford Fosgate Premium 12-speaker audio system, remote engine start, NissanConnect Services powered by SiriusXM (automatic collision notification with emergency call and stolen vehicle locator, remote services including lock/unlock, "flash lights" and "sound horn," customizable alerts including drive zone, valet, curfew and speed, dealer service scheduling and maintenance alerts) (SiriusXM subscription required, sold separately), a compass on the NAVI display and HomeLink Universal Transceiver. The SL trim level also comes equipped with a range of standard bed features, including the Utili-track cargo channel system with tie-down cleats, tailgate lighting, spray-in bedliner, and 110V outlet in the bed. Standard SL towing features include manually extending and folding tow mirrors, Trailer Brake Controller, Trailer Light Check function, front tow hooks (2WD models only) and integrated gooseneck hitch.

The top-of-the-line Platinum Reserve is distinguished by its premium leather-appointed seats with "Platinum Reserve" branding on the seat backs, "Platinum Reserve" exterior badging, heated steering wheel, chrome exhaust tailpipe finishers, 20x7.5-inch dark chrome-like wheels, driver and passenger heated and cooled front seats, heated rear seats, Trailer Brake Controller, Trailer Light Check function, dark chrome tailgate finisher, two-tone painted front and rear fascia, two-tone paint on the body sides, two-tone painted over-fender molding, dark chrome outside door handles and outside mirrors, leather-wrapped steering wheel with a wood insert, premium open-pore wood instrument panel finishers with metallic "Platinum Reserve" badging, leather-wrapped shift knob with a dark-painted trim ring, and dark chrome-accented vent knobs and cup holder trim.

Also standard are an integrated gooseneck hitch, tow mirrors with a dark chrome cap, front and rear metallic kickplate finishers with "Platinum Reserve" logos and pre-wiring for the DVD Family Entertainment System. "Platinum Reserve"-branded floor mats and TITAN box bed storage units are also available as accessories.

Equipment Packages
In addition to the wealth of standard features offered across the various TITAN XD Crew Cab models, many different equipment packages are available.

The S Convenience & Utility Package features a front overhead console, spray-on bedliner and receiver hitch with a wiring harness connector on the rear bumper. The SV Tow Convenience Package includes tow mirrors (manually extending with heat and puddle lamp functions), Trailer Brake Controller, Trailer Light Check function (included on the key fob) receiver hitch with 4-pin/7-pin wiring harness connector on the rear bumper, integrated gooseneck hitch and front tow hooks for 2WD models.

The SV Comfort and Convenience Package adds Nissan Intelligent Key with driver and passenger request switches, cloth Captain's seats with center console, 110V outlet in the back of the center console and 12V outlet in the center console, an 8-way power driver's seat, driver's seat power lumbar, rear HVAC vents, leather-wrapped steering wheel, front and rear parking sensors, RearView Monitor, power slide rear window with defogger, auto on/off headlights, auto-dimming rearview mirror with HomeLink Universal Transceiver and compass.

The package also includes Blind Spot Warning (BSW), Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA), painted rear bumper, 20-inch aluminum-alloy wheels, Dual Zone Automatic Temperature Control, fog lamps, chrome interior door locks, rain-sensing wipers, NissanConnect with Navigation and Mobile Apps, Siri Eyes Free and heated front driver and passenger seats. Step rails are also available as an accessory with the SV Comfort and Convenience Package.

Another for SV, the SV Utility Package, is aimed at work customers with the Utili-track system with four tie-down cleats, tailgate area illumination, a 110V outlet in the bed, LED under-rail bed lighting and a spray-on bedliner. A flat-floor storage box in the 2nd row is also available as an accessory.

The PRO-4X Utility and Audio Package includes front and rear parking sensors, the Utili-track system with four tie-down cleats, tailgate area illumination, a 110V outlet in the bed, LED under-rail bed lighting, power sliding rear window with defogger, 12-speaker Rockford Fosgate premium audio system with an amplifier, underseat subwoofer, center channel speaker and front and rear tweeters.

The PRO-4X Convenience Package contains leather-appointed seats with contrasting stitching (unique for the PRO-4X), "PRO-4X" embroidery, 4-way power-assisted seat, heated steering wheel, heated rear seats, power tilt/telescoping steering wheel with memory, a compass on the NAVI display, NissanConnect with Navigation, NissanConnect Services (SiriusXM subscription required, sold separately), remote engine start*, driver's side auto-dimming outside mirror, heated driver and passenger seats, memory driver's seat and auto-dimming rearview mirror.

The PRO-4X luxury package includes driver and passenger ventilated seats, Around View Monitor (AVM) with Moving Object Detection (MOD), Reverse Auto Tilt and memory outside mirrors. The TITAN Box storage units are available as bed accessories.

The sole package for the Platinum Reserve trim level is the Platinum Reserve Rear DVD Entertainment System, which includes a headrest-mounted DVD Entertainment System, plus a pair of wireless headphones.

Durability, Quality and Reliability
The TITAN design and engineering teams also set one other bar extremely high, what they designated as "120 percent DQR." That meant infusing the vehicle with exceptional fit and finish, top quality components inside and out, and unrelenting attention to detail – in areas that can be seen and areas that are not.

The 2016 TITAN has undergone some of the most rigorous and extensive testing of any vehicle in company history, building on the foundation established for Nissan Commercial Vehicles extended durability evaluations.

"TITAN is about one thing – getting the job done," concluded Diaz. "While dimensionally the TITAN XD will fit in most garages just like a light duty truck, it has the heart and soul of a heavy duty machine. Owners will never have to worry about having towing or hauling power in reserve – without having to pay a serious price in terms of drivability or affordability."

The 2016 Nissan TITAN XD is assembled in Canton, Mississippi, with engines assembled in Indiana and Tennessee (5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel and gasoline V8 and V6 respectively). See NissanNews.com for full pricing for the 2016 Nissan TITAN XD Crew Cab models equipped with the 5.0L Cummins V8 Turbo Diesel.

West Virginia’s ACE Adventure Resort commits $1 million on Infrastructure for Upcoming Season



Preparations Being Made for the Spring Grand Opening of ACE’s Wonderland Waterpark

Come spring 2016, a 1,500-acre playground in the West Virginia mountains will strut new finery thanks to a nearly $1 million infrastructure upgrade and enhanced guest amenities.

Along with lodging and food & beverage refurbishments and additions, roads and parking facilities have been expanded and a new entrance landscaped. Much of the splash, however, has been lavished on a five-acre water park that is at the heart of ACE Adventure Resort in Minden, W.V.

This destination resort, focused on river and mountain adventure is also the East Coast’s premier hideaway for world-class whitewater rafting on the New and Gauley Rivers.  But when people return after a day on the river they usually head to the vast waterpark.

“Consider literally thousands of people of all ages enjoying this liquid playground from April through October.  While some are here for multiple-night stays, others drive in for a few hours on a Saturday or Sunday just to enjoy our one-of-a-kind lake and its inflatable toys,” said Heidi Prior, ACE Adventure Resort Marketing Director. “We’ve substantially dialed up the fun meter with our lake-related enhancements.”



New Wonderland Waterpark installations and amenities include two brand-new 300-foot industrial-strength waterslides, 40 new inflatable lake toys, an expanded beach area, new hardscape and greenscape, a new retail store, snack shack and arcade, and the addition of seven new bathrooms and eight changing rooms.

Once at the resort, people like to stay put. This means that on premise dining and beverage venues are integral to the resort. The current improvements herald renovations to the bar, both inside and out, including a large outdoor pavilion. Also new pizza ovens have been added to facilitate ACE’s award-winning brick oven pizza.

In addition to being the region’s largest private campground for tents and RVs, the resort hosts overnight guests in more than 55 cabins and lodges that sleep from four to 14. Nearly all of the deluxe cabins now have new beds, comforters, window dressings, lamps and furniture. Nine one-room Cozy Cabins have been renovated to offer two bedrooms. Full bathrooms have been added to 10 Cedar Cabins. Four other cabins that formerly utilized ladders to access sleeping lofts now have staircases.

Spring officially begins here when the rafts start running the rivers. ACE’s first trip in 2016 was March 7 with temperatures in the mid 70’s. The New River offers a whitewater roller coaster ride of towering, crashing waves plus mild sections for the first-time rafter. The mild Upper New River section is ideal for family vacations. The New River Gorge National River is part of the National Park System of parks.

Resort activities that don’t involve getting wet include zip lining, mountain biking, hiking, rock climbing, disc golf, paintball, stand-up paddle boarding and more. Throughout the season are special events and activities that will add to and enhance a stay at ACE Adventure Resort. For info on mud runs to marathons plus a mountain music festival featuring top named acts see: http://aceraft.com/pages/special-events.

For more information and to make trip and lodging reservations, please telephone (800) 787-3982 or email ace@aceraft.com. Visit the website at www.aceraft.com.

About ACE Adventure Resort
ACE Adventure Resort is the East Coast’s largest mountain hideaway exclusively focused on world-class whitewater rafting along with guided adventures, outdoor sports and activities, lodging, camping and other amenities. The nearby New River Gorge National River is affectionately known as the “Grand Canyon of the East” and features rafting from April to October. The New and Gauley Rivers combined offer over 100 miles of rapids all within 30 minutes of the resort. Both rivers are administered by the National Park Service.  ACE’s passion since 1980 has been to create vacations wrapped around these rivers and other outdoor adventures so that guests can experience “a world of adventure in one place.” The 1,500 acres here encompass both forest and a 5-acre lake plus a series of ponds, a mining-era ghost town and spectacular cliffs for rock climbing, waterfalls and overlooks.

Winner of many awards over the years, in 2015 ACE Adventure Resort’s website was a Star of the Industry Winner for Best Website at the West Virginia Governor’s Conference on Tourism. In the 2015 Best of Blue Ridge Awards, ACE Adventure Resort placed at the top in the following categories: best kid-friendly outdoor destination, best paddling river (The Gauley River), best climbing crag and best place to play hooky (New River Gorge).

Follow ACE Adventure Resort on Social Media

ALK Technologies launches new CoPilot RV App

ALK Technologies, a Trimble Company and global leader in GeoLogistics and navigation software, today announced CoPilot RV, an offline navigation app for drivers of large Recreational Vehicles (RVs) and motorhomes.

“We’ve taken a great deal of care to create a CoPilot GPS navigation app designed specifically for the unique navigation needs of RV and motorhome drivers,” said David Quin, VP consumer applications at ALK Technologies. “CoPilot RV is a powerful and affordable tool to navigate a RV or motorhome confidently throughout the U.S. and Canada, leaving users free to enjoy the drive without worrying about traveling on a restricted road or losing guidance in areas with spotty data coverage.”

The new app for smartphones and tablets enables users to take the strain out of driving a RV or motorhome by automatically generating customized routes based on vehicle size and class (height, weight and length).

Drivers can hit the road with confidence, knowing that CoPilot RV provides them with:
  • Route planning that avoids narrow local roads and prevents dangerous or costly run-ins with low bridges and other restricted roads
  • Clear, easy-to-follow directions designed to reduce driver distraction
  • Easy access to millions of useful pre-installed locations like campgrounds, rest areas and gas stations
  • Multi-stop itinerary builder with the ability to add up to 50 stops across the country, saving time and fuel costs
  • Voice-guided turn instructions, automatic route recalculation, advanced lane guidance at highway exits and intersections plus speed limit warnings when posted speed is exceeded
  • 12 months of real-time traffic service to help drivers avoid unexpected delays on routes
  • Free map updates of the U.S. and Canada

CoPilot RV’s detailed and comprehensive street maps of the U.S. and Canada are downloaded directly to a smartphone or tablet for offline use, eliminating the need for a mobile data network connection in remote areas.

For a full list of features, visit: https://copilotgps.com/us/rv-navigation/.

CoPilot RV is available now through Google Play and the iTunes AppStore for a limited time introductory price of $49.99.

Links to buy:
Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.alk.copilot.namarket.premium.rv
App Store: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/copilot-rv-usa/id1080395403?mt=8

About ALK Technologies 
ALK Technologies, a Trimble Company and global leader in GeoLogistics solution and navigation software, is focused on developing innovative solutions for transportation, logistics, mobile workforces and consumers. Product lines include PC*MILER, CoPilot and ALK Maps. PC*MILER is widely recognized as a transportation industry standard for routing, mileage and mapping in North America. CoPilot is a leading source of GPS navigation software for fleets, mobile operators, hardware OEMs, system integrators, professional drivers and consumers. ALK Maps is a development platform designed for the transportation industry and provides commercial routing, geocoding and mapping visualization for enterprise applications.

Free Admission & Festivities during National Park Week April 16-24



As the National Park Service (NPS) celebrates 100 years of protecting and preserving the nation’s parks and monuments, all Americans are encouraged to get out and #FindYourPark during National Park Week, April 16-24. All National Park Service entrance fees will be waived for the week so choose a park, near or far, and discover what makes it unique.

Grand Canyon Mather Campground
Each of the 410 national parks is a thread in the tapestry that tells the story of our country – its beautiful landscapes, diverse culture, and rich heritage. Throughout the year, and especially during National Park Week, the NPS and the National Park Foundation, invite everyone to discover and share their own unique connections to our public lands.

“We have an amazing variety of special events taking place during the centennial,” said National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis. “Some commemorate our first hundred years, but many others look to the future, to the next 100 years, and will help connect with and create the next generation of park visitors, supporters and advocates. It is through them that America’s lands and stories will be preserved and passed on to future generations.”

Cascade Pass parking lot and trailhead.
“With free admission to parks all week long, National Park Week is the perfect opportunity to check out a new location, revisit one of your favorite parks, and perhaps invite a friend who has never visited a park before to join you," said Will Shafroth, president of the National Park Foundation, the official charity of America's national parks. "It's a great time to experience and celebrate our parks and historic places, and discover and share with each other how these treasured places are vital and relevant to people from all backgrounds from all over the country."

National Park Week will kick off with National Junior Ranger Day on Saturday, April 16. Parks will host kid oriented activities and distribute the new Centennial Junior Ranger booklet and badge. Throughout the week, many parks will also host Every Kid in a Park events, which encourage fourth grade students to visit national parks and other public lands by offering a free annual pass.

Other highlights during the week include an education summit on April 20, Earth Day events on April 22, a national park InstaMeet on April 23, and Park RxDay on April 24.  Park Rx is a community health initiative where medical doctors “prescribe” time in parks to promote wellness and help prevent and treat chronic disease.  More than a dozen national parks will offer health screenings and recreational activities, including an event with the U.S. Surgeon General.

Visit www.FindYourPark.com to learn more about National Park Week activities throughout the country.

The RV Geeks are going to Australia!



About RV Geeks
The RV Geeks offer RV maintenance, repair & travel tips from “Do-It-Ourselves” full-time RVers. They’ve handled most of their own RV maintenance during more than a decade of exploring North America. While not RV technicians, the RV Geeks are mechanically inclined and have learned a lot about RV systems over the years. They handle most of our own minor service, repair and upgrade work on our 2005 43′ Newmar Mountain Aire diesel pusher. We also maintained our 2002 39′ Fleetwood Bounder Diesel during our first two years on the road. Visit their website and subscribe to their YouTube channel.


The Most (Michigan) & Least (New Hampshire) Expensive States to Own a Car

There's a $7,216 cost difference between owning a car in Michigan and New Hampshire, finds a new study from personal finance website GOBankingRates.com. The study considered the costs of six key factors affecting the expenses of owning a vehicle in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia.
Outside of the sticker price of purchasing or financing a new set of wheels, GOBankingRates.com evaluated the following expenses to generate a national ranking:
  • Car sales tax
  • Title fees
  • Registration fees
  • Average annual car insurance premiums
  • Annual gas expenses
  • Average car maintenance and repair costs
"The common costs of owning a car outside of the car payment quickly add up – our survey found that the average costs of owning a car for three years is $11,227," said Elyssa Kirkham, lead reporter on the study for GOBankingRates. "Typically, car owners should keep their costs low – around 15 percent of their income for the car payment, insurance, gas, and so on – which is trickier in states with higher car costs."

From most to least expensive, here is the complete state ranking:

Rank – State – Total Cost for 3 Years of Ownership
1 – Michigan – $15,314.53
2 – California – $14,451.58
3 – District of Columbia – $13,561.06
4 – New Jersey – $13,484.11
5 – Florida – $13,210.64
6 – Maryland – $12,925.76
7 – Rhode Island – $12,895.61
8 – Montana – $12,763.74
9 – Nevada – $12,695.68
10 – Washington – $12,612.92
11 – Connecticut – $12,078.40
12 – Hawaii – $12,060.55
13 – Minnesota – $11,882.37
14 – Louisiana – $11,822.62
15 – Pennsylvania – $11,781.63
16 – Massachusetts – $11,745.74
17 – Texas – $11,672.91
18 – Delaware – $11,540.36
19 – Colorado – $11,470.38
20 – West Virginia – $11,340.77
21 – Georgia – $11,318.43
22 – Oklahoma – $11,290.70
23 – Kansas – $11,124.29
24 – Kentucky – $11,081.83
25 – Illinois – $11,041.66
26 – Utah – $11,003.15
27 – Arizona – $10,984.00
28 – Arkansas – $10,972.11
29 – North Dakota – $10,878.60
30 – Wyoming – $10,859.14
31 – Vermont – $10,739.32
32 – Tennessee – $10,689.67
33 – Iowa – $10,681.65
34 – Indiana – $10,638.45
35 – New York – $10,627.63
36 – South Carolina – $10,625.40
37 – Idaho – $10,476.13
38 – Nebraska – $10,409.89
39 – Mississippi – $10,392.23
40 – South Dakota – $10,303.56
41 – Alabama – $10,214.40
42 – New Mexico – $9,923.26
43 – Maine – $9,866.27
44 – Alaska – $9,813.85
45 – Oregon – $9,696.00
46 – Virginia – $9,602.97
47 – Ohio – $9,595.07
48 – Wisconsin – $9,570.90
49 – North Carolina – $9,447.94
50 – Missouri – $9,280.24
51 – New Hampshire – $8,098.00

Additional Insights:
  • New Hampshire, Oregon, Alaska and Montana are the only states that don't levy sales tax on vehicle purchases
  • Missouri's average gas price of $1.59 per gallon is the lowest in the nation
  • These western states claim the highest gas prices in the country: Hawaii, California, Alaska, Nevada, and Washington.
  • 8 of the 10 least expensive states to own a car are coastal states.
Methodology: 
To generate these rankings, GOBankingRates surveyed and totaled the cost of buying and owning a car for three years in all 50 states and D.C. This total included six key car expenses:
  • Car sales tax, based on rates provided by CarMax.com and calculated on the average car transaction amount of $33,543 in August 2015 as reported by the Kelley Blue Book.
  • Title fees, as reported by the National Conference of State Legislatures.
  • Registration fees, as reported by the National Conference of State Legislatures, calculated annually.
  • Average annual car insurance premiums, sourced from Insured.com's 2016 report on car insurance rates by state.
  • Annual gas expenses, based on an average of historical regular gas prices in each state sourced from AAA's Fuel Gauge Report. The expense was calculated based on the assumption of a driver filling up a 14-gallon tank once a week.
  • Average car maintenance and repair costs in each state, sourced from CarMD's 2014 State Repair Cost Rankings.
  • For title and registration fees are based on car statistics, GOBankingRates assumed a car value of $33,543, an average weight of 4,000 lbs and a model year of 2014. Car sales tax and title fee were counted once each, while recurring annual costs of registration fees, insurance premiums, gas expenses and car maintenance were each counted three times for three years. This generated the total costs of buying and owning a car in each state, and states were ranked according to this total to find the least and most expensive.
Source: Press Release

Easy Tips to Prevent Wildfires

Every year millions of acres are burned by wildfires.  These damaged acres are devastating for vegetation and wildlife, as well as the general population, and cause billions of dollars’ worth of destruction.

Since 2002, the cost to prevent and fight wildfires has averaged more than $3 billion per year, up from less than $1 billion annually in the 1990s. Wildfire protection now accounts for over half of the Forest Service’s annual budget of $5.5 billion (2013, June).

More than 15,000 wildfires burned in the United States from 2000 to 2013. During these years, 127 urban areas (cities with more than 75,000 residents) were threatened by major wildfires (fires greater than 5 square miles in area) that burned within 10 miles of the city.

In many cases, urban areas have been threatened repeatedly by major wildfire events. Cities in the West are particularly vulnerable to wildfire because the West contains conditions conducive to wildfires such as extensive and remote forest areas and frequent drought conditions.

Over 90% of these wildfires have been caused by humans, and a significant number were caused by vehicles. These fires are actually the easiest to prevent, and really only require a few minutes of preparation to reduce the risk of wildfires.

To reduce and eliminate the risk of wildfires, Fastway trailer products recommends:

  • Completely extinguish a campfire before leaving the campsite.
  • When using fireworks, only use them on a flat surface far from any dry grass or trees, and keep a bucket of water nearby to thoroughly extinguish fireworks after they are used.
  • Properly dispose of cigarettes.
  • Never park a vehicle on dry vegetation; the heat from the exhaust can cause it to ignite.
  • Properly secure safety chains when towing a vehicle.

Recently Smokey Bear released a video about the potential danger of safety chains dragging behind vehicles. While his video shows twisting the chains to keep them off the ground, Fastway shows drivers a faster, easier way (see below).



For less than $10 Fastway is providing a way to protect our forests and the equipment of those who tow. The solution is a Fastway Chain-Up.

“Dragging chains can cause clanking, wear, and dangerous sparks,” says Rich Elliott, Fastway Vice President of Sales. “We designed the Fastway Chain-Up to provide a faster and easier way keep chains off the ground. In addition to extending the life of your safety chains, this product helps prevent wildfires, by eliminating the sparks caused by dragging safety chains. We are excited that Smokey Bear produced a video focusing on safety chains, and hope that Americans will join us in preventing fires by properly securing their safety chains.”

The above video teaches, how to prevent wildfires with a Fastway Chain-Up. To learn more about the Chain-Up, and how it can help prevent forest fires by keeping safety chains off the ground, visit fastwaytrailer.com.

Source: Press release

Open Season: Scared Silly Characters Join Smokey Bear and Boys & Girls Clubs of America to Promote Campfire Safety



Sony Pictures Home Entertainment (SPHE) and Sony Pictures Animation have joined forces with the Ad Council, the U.S. Forest Service, the National Association of State Foresters, the National Forest Foundation (NFF) and the Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) to help raise awareness for Smokey Bear's national wildfire prevention campaign, using #SmokeyBearHug.

OPEN SEASON: SCARED SILLY stars Boog & Elliot received a hug from Smokey Bear during a recent weekend for promoting campfire safety, kicking off a nation-wide program teaching youth from the Boys and Girls Club of America how to safely build, manage and put out a campfire.

"We are so pleased that Boog & Elliot are serving as ambassadors for Smokey's wildfire prevention campaign," said Jennifer Anderson, SVP, Marketing, SPHE. "Teaching children campfire safety tips will bring the importance of wildfire prevention to a whole new generation."

"The U.S. Forest Service educates children to prevent unwanted wildfires," said James Hubbard, deputy chief of the agency's State and Private Forestry. "We are excited Boog and Elliott will help spread Smokey Bear's message of campfire safety. This partnership helps today's youth become tomorrow's adults who use fire responsibly and care for our nation's forests and grasslands."

For every Boys & Girls Club youth member participating, SPHE will donate a tree to be planted by the National Forest Foundation (NFF) to replace those lost during natural disasters such as wildfires, and insect and disease outbreaks.

"Our national forests and grasslands are home to thousands of animals, from bears like Boog to deer like Elliot. They also provide clean water, clean air and opportunities for hiking, camping and playing in nature. Wildfires, insects and disease can negatively impact forest health, which is why we're very grateful to SPHE for supporting reforestation efforts through our Trees for US program. Together, we can ensure our national forests and grasslands are healthy and vibrant for generations to come," said Marcus Selig, Interim President at the NFF.

Audiences everywhere are encouraged to also participate in spreading awareness of campfire safety by posting their own fire safety photos using #SmokeyBearHug online.

Source: Press release

RV Education 101 videos: Exterior RV LED Lighting, Spare Tire, Power Cords, Electrical System Protection, Roof Inspection & Tire Pressure Tips



RV Education 101 e-book series
As I've said many times, Mark Polk is my favorite RV expert. I'm pleased he and his wife, Dawn, have allowed me to sell his RV e-book series. E-books (electronic books) are immediately downloaded to your computer after you make the purchase. The RV Education 101 e-book series includes:
  • "The Original Checklist for RVers"
  • "The RV Book"
  • "RV Campground Basics"
  • "101 Tips for RVers"
  • "RV Care and Maintenance"
  • "Insiders Guide to Buying an RV"
  • "Winterizing & Storing your RV"
  • "RV Awning Use & Care"
  • "Deep Cycle Battery Care & Maintenance"
  • "RV Buyers Survival Guide"
  • "Complete Guide To: RV Towing, Weights, Hitch Work & Backing"
  • "Pop-Up Basics 101"
  • "Dinghy Towing"

Traverse City named Midwest Living's 'Greatest Midwest Town'



Thanks to tens of thousands of votes cast over the past six weeks, Traverse City has been declared the “Greatest Midwest Town” by Midwest Living Magazine, according to Traverse City Tourism.

The popular Lake Michigan resort community, a four-season outdoor recreation hub known for its freshwater beaches and thriving wine, food and craft brewing scene, will be featured in the magazine’s July/August cover story and celebrated at an on-site event hosted by Midwest Living’s editorial content director, Trevor Meers, and publisher Mark Josephson.

“I can’t think of a better town to represent what the Midwest has to offer,” said Meers, as he congratulated Traverse City for winning the competition.

In January, the magazine’s editorial staff selected Traverse City as one of 12 communities – one from each Midwestern state – to compete for the title of "Greatest Midwest Town." From then until the end of February, nominee towns and their fans were encouraged to cast daily votes to demonstrate their popularity. Other communities nominated in the contest were Galena, IL; Medora, ND; Duluth, MN; Lawrence, KS; Branson, MO; Put-in-Bay, OH; Columbus, IN; Rapid City, SD; Nebraska City, NB; and Bayfield, WI.

Traverse City’s strongest challenger, however, turned out to be the plucky Iowa town of Decorah, a college community along the Upper Iowa River with a strong Norwegian-American flavor. For weeks it was a close contest between the two towns, but fans and residents of Traverse City eventually mustered the votes to prevail. Brad Van Dommelen, president and CEO of Traverse City Tourism -- the community’s official destination marketing organization – found the result gratifying.

“We are very pleased to receive this recognition amongst the other great Midwest towns,” said Van Dommelen. “This demonstrates the positive destination brand that Traverse City has built and the enthusiasm of our residents and visitors towards our community.”

Gone with the Wynns: How RV Solar Works, Off Grid Solar Powered RV Air Conditioning, 960 Watt RV Solar Install, RV Solar Tilting, & Trona Pinnacles



About Gone with the Wynns
Jason and Nikki Wynn are a couple of perpetual travelers, RVers and modern day documentarians. Their RV is the home of their discoveries and adventures, all depicting the unscripted tale of the quirky couple who traded in everyday life to satisfy their wear-out-your-shoes sense of adventure. Visit their website.

Adventures by Disney offers new ways to explore America in 2016

Three New United States Guided Group Itineraries Showcase Central Florida, Montana, and Washington, D.C & Philadelphia

Adventures by Disney, an award-winning leader in guided group travel worldwide, has announced three new United States vacations available beginning this summer. Exhilarating, educational and entertaining, these vacations showcase the diverse destinations of Central Florida, Montana, and Washington, D.C. & Philadelphia, offering families unforgettable ways to bond and explore America.

Each of these weeklong trips is filled with activities unique to the destinations visited. In Central Florida, families will enjoy unprecedented backstage access and VIP experiences at Walt Disney World Resort, airboat through Florida marshlands and thrill in a visit to the "Space Coast." Montana offers glamorous camping, or "glamping," near Yellowstone National Park and a stay at a dude ranch in Big Sky. And American history comes alive during a visit to the nation's capital, and the United States' first capital city.

"Adventures by Disney is proud to showcase the majestic landscapes, riveting history and diverse experiences available throughout America on these and other itineraries," said Ken Potrock, senior vice president of Adventures by Disney. "Now is a wonderful time to explore the United States, and with the addition of these vacations we've found new ways to offer exciting, varied activities that appeal to every member of the family."

Highlights of these new Adventures by Disney itineraries include:

Walt Disney World Resort & Central Florida 
This unforgettable and unprecedented trip includes backstage access and magical VIP experiences at the Walt Disney World theme parks, exclusive dining opportunities, outdoor adventures in the wilds of Florida, a private lunch with an astronaut and more.

  • Take part in a privately guided safari at Disney's Animal Kingdom theme park and go behind the scenes of the revolutionary Rivers of Light show before taking a VIP seat to enjoy this new nighttime spectacular.
  • Savor unique world-class dining opportunities, such as an exclusive dinner at Disney's Contemporary Resort chef's kitchen.
  • Learn how Disney magic is created and receive special behind-the-scenes access during one-of-a-kind experiences with Walt Disney Imagineers.
  • Enjoy special Disney FastPass+ selections at the Walt Disney World theme parks, including premium access to Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, Toy Story Mania! and other popular attractions.
  • Explore Central Florida's unique natural wonders on land – by zipline, swamp buggy and on horseback – and on water in kayaks and aboard an airboat.
  • Go in-depth with an astronaut and learn firsthand what it takes to soar into space.


Montana
This exhilarating adventure includes "glamping" (glamorous camping) adjacent to Yellowstone National Park, a dude ranch experience in beautiful Big Sky, and active excursions through amazing natural landscapes.

  • Enjoy the adventure and serenity of upscale camping, explore nature while biking in the backcountry and listen to storytelling under the stars.
  • Get hands-on at an authentic dude ranch complete with fun family activities like horseback riding, whitewater rafting, fly-fishing and a private riverside cookout.
  • Experience the wonders of Yellowstone National Park during the centennial of the National Parks Service and witness the explosive power of Old Faithful.

Washington, D.C. & Philadelphia 
Experience American history in an exciting, interactive way as it comes alive on this immersive adventure at some of America's most iconic landmarks, including delightful encounters with characters from the past, a fun-filled scavenger hunt and storytelling at every stop along the way.
  • Delight in a sweeping tour of Philadelphia on a privately guided trolley excursion to remarkable landmarks such as the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall and the Reading Terminal Market.
  • Walk in the footsteps of such historical figures as George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson and Betsy Ross while visiting Washington, D.C. landmarks, including the Capitol, Library of Congress, the Newseum and more.
  • Discover the history of Gettysburg on a fun, interactive tour that details this famous battle, President Lincoln's speech and the lifestyle of the era. 
  • These new adventures join an existing line-up of more than 30 other Adventures by Disney guided group vacations to some of the world's most exciting destinations. Two Disney-trained Adventure Guides, along with local experts, ensure that every detail of the vacation is taken care of, allowing travelers to create everlasting memories without the stress of planning.
For more details and to book reservations, call 1-800-543-0865 or contact a travel agent.

About Adventures by DisneyLaunched in 2005, Adventures by Disney provides immersive, hassle-free group guided family vacation experiences to destinations on six continents. Families traveling with Adventures by Disney receive exceptional service while taking part in extraordinary experiences at locations including: the South African plains, the great cities of Europe, Costa Rica's rich rainforest, the ruins of Pompeii and Machu Picchu, Australia's Outback, the Great Wall of China and some of America's most iconic destinations.

Adventures by Disney has been recognized by numerous travel organizations for its excellence in family tourism. Adventures by Disney was recently voted Top "Adventure" Tour Operator in the Travel Weekly 2015 Readers Choice Awards, and was previously named North America's Leading Tour Operator at the 2014 World Travel Awards. Adventures by Disney was also named World's Leading Luxury Tour Operator in the 2012, 2010 and 2009 World Travel Awards, and ranked No 1 among Tour Operators and Safari Outfitters for Families in 2011 by Travel + Leisure's World's Best Awards.

Offering Disney-trained Adventure Guides on each trip, engaging activities, VIP experiences and personal touches throughout, Adventures by Disney vacations are crafted to excite and delight everyone. Visit AdventuresByDisney.com to learn more.

Source: Press release

2016 New York Campground & RV Park Guide now available

Plan Your "Bucket List" Camping and Travel Adventure in New York

Have you ever heard someone refer to their “Bucket List”? It is a phrase that has become ubiquitous in the past 10 years from everyday life to Hollywood movies to the travel and tourism industry. In short, the term “Bucket List” simply represents all the things you want to do or accomplish before you die. Or in slang terms, it is the things you want to do or accomplish before you “kick the bucket.”

Live life to the fullest – or at least have the most fulfilling vacation possible – by incorporating destinations in New York State into your camping and travel bucket list.

But, where should you go? Considering that New York camping and RVing should be at the top of your bucket list, you can find information on almost 200 campgrounds and RV parks through Campground Owners of New York (CONY), a trade association of quality, friendly, privately-owned campgrounds. You can go online and look them up, and order your FREE 2016 NY campground & RV Park guide.

You'll find, along with camping information, several pages of informative editorial about iconic New York destinations and attractions you can add to your "bucket list," when camping this season.

If you would like a free copy of a guide to New York campgrounds and RV parks, including expanded editorial and a camping and travel bucket list check-list, just visit CONY at www.NYcampgrounds.com and fill out the online request form, or call 1-800-497-2669.

REI receives 5-Star Rating from TopConsumerReviews.com

TopConsumerReviews.com recently awarded their highest five-star rating to REI, the industry leader in Camping Gear.

As life becomes more hectic, people often look to nature for relaxation, escape, and even a dose of adventure. Regardless of the level of expertise of the individual, camping always requires specific gear to make the experience safe and enjoyable for everyone involved. Rather than spending an entire day driving around town hoping that the right sleeping bag is in stock or looking for a tent that will withstand the elements, shopping for camping gear online makes finding the necessary equipment simple, fast, and often less expensive than a traditional retailer.

“REI is one of the most well-known names in the outdoor gear industry,” explained Brian Dolezal, of TopConsumerReviews.com, LLC. “No matter what you need, REI is sure to have it. Their selection truly sets the standard in camping equipment, from well-known brands like Camelbak and North Face, to REI-brand gear. Not only is their selection fantastic, but their pricing easily matches or beats other online camping gear websites. 

“What really makes REI the place to shop online for camping equipment is the return policy: customers can get a full refund on returns within the first year of purchase, for any reason,” Dolezal continued. “Since REI has retail locations in most major metropolitan areas, making a return or an exchange is easy and inexpensive. REI should be at the top of every camper’s list for their equipment needs.”

Other retailers singled out by the website include:
To find out more about REI and other camping gear stores, including reviews and comparison rankings, visit the Camping Gear category of TopConsumerReviews.com at http://www.topconsumerreviews.com/camping-gear/.

About REI 
REI (Recreational Equipment, Inc.) began as a group of two dozen mountain climbing friends in 1938 and developed into America’s largest consumer cooperative. The company seeks to promote outdoor adventure and stewardship through supporting conservation efforts via donations and volunteer efforts in beach clean-ups, habitat restoration, and more. REI backs every product with a 100% satisfaction guarantee.

About TopConsumerReviews.com 
TopConsumerReviews.com, LLC is a leading provider of independent reviews and rankings of hundreds of consumer products and services. From Camping Gear to Bicycle Parts and Elliptical Machines, TopConsumerReviews.com delivers in-depth product evaluations in order to make purchasing decisions easier.

Source: Press Release