Nearly all of the 80+ Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Camp-Resorts in the US lie east of I-35 (Duluth MN to Laredo TX) and that’s something the company would like to change.

Now celebrating their 50th year, Jellystones are the epitome of family camping. “The family camping market is exploding across the country, with the Western U.S. an underserved market,” said Jim Westover, vice president of Product Development and Sales. “The Jellystone Park concept is extremely appealing to millennial families who want to enjoy pools, water slides and splash-grounds, activities and the comforts of premium cabins.”

Jellystone parks are franchises – meaning the individual campgrounds are operated by different owners who contract with Leisure Systems (the parent company) for the rights to the branding, the Yogi Bear characters, the reservation system, nationwide marketing and more. In turn, they agree to uphold certain standards and pay a franchise fee.

It may be difficult for a private campground to pay a hefty franchise fee, but being a Jellystone can mean big business from parents who want to know what they are getting when the book a campground. “Once parks become a Jellystone, they become even more successful, usually generating double-digit increases in occupancies and revenue during their first year,” Westover added.

Following a year of record sales, Jellystone is targeting the Western U.S. with a new franchise expansion campaign, kicking off April 27 with a prospective investors and owners workshop in Pheonix. In order to target states like Arizona, California, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming, the company has developed streamlined processes to help investors quickly convert existing campgrounds or build new parks.

Entrepreneur magazine ranks Jellystone Park among the nation’s top franchise opportunities, and it’s in the Franchise Business Review top 50, based on owners’ satisfaction. At the one-day workshop, the company will give an overview of the growing family camping industry and the brand, and provide details on operations, including reservations and marketing, information on the conversion process and financing. Attendees will hear from an existing franchise owner and learn about the architectural, design and project management services available through Domorkur, Jellystone’s strategic partner.

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