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Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Adds New Parks in U.S., Canada


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As Yogi Bear enjoys his return to the spotlight thanks to the recent Quicken Loans TV commercials, his day job—Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Camp-Resorts—announced the addition of two new campgrounds in Tennessee and Newfoundland.

Coming off record 2017 sales, Jellystone Parks has racked up accolades within the franchise industry. Its new parks will be located in Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg, Tennessee and in Pouch Cove, Newfoundland, which looks especially alluring on the province’s northeast Atlantic shore.

Heather Blankenship, a commercial real estate broker, converted her existing campground in Pigeon Forge, which she has owned for seven years, to a Jellystone Park. Its grand opening was March 10.

“My goal is to bring camping to the next generation and get kids outside,” said Blankenship, a single mother of three children. “Having a franchise that is so kid-oriented will help drive my mission.”

Blankenship’s campground has 100 RV sites, 20 cabins, and 15 glamping tents. The campground also has two pools, a fishing pond, activities all day, outdoor movies, a playground and a pizzeria.

Blankenship, 32, is the first millennial to purchase a new Jellystone Park franchise and is one of its youngest owners. “Compared to all the veterans, I’m young to the industry, but I do have seven years of independent ownership under my belt,” she said. “After years of meeting Jellystone Parks owners at conferences, I realized just how much they are aligned with my goals.”

The new franchisee in Pouch Cove is David Snow, who is converting his existing 450-site Marine Park campground to a Jellystone Park. Now open, it is the sixth Jellystone Park in Canada.

“By becoming a Jellystone Parks franchisee, we can tap into the brand’s experience and expand our traffic overnight,” Snow said. “We’re adding to our play structures and redoing our store to make room for Jellystone Park novelty items,” Snow said. He also plans to install rental cabins.

Launched in 1969, Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Camp-Resorts is the second largest chain of campgrounds in the United States, with 85 campgrounds with more than 17,000 campsites and vacation rentals in 31 states and five Canadian provinces.

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The latest news, opinions and commentary on what's happening in the franchise arena that could affect your business.

Tom KaiserTom Kaiser is senior editor of Franchise Times. He can be reached at 612.767.3209, or send story ideas to tkaiser@franchisetimes.com.
 
Beth EwenBeth Ewen is editor-in-chief of Franchise Times. She can be reached at 612.767.3212, or send story ideas to bewen@franchisetimes.com.
 
Nicholas UptonNicholas Upton is restaurants editor at Franchise Times. He can be reached at 612.767.3226, or send story ideas to nupton@franchisetimes.com.
 
Laura MichaelsLaura Michaels is managing editor of Franchise Times. She can be reached at 612.767.3210, or send story ideas to lmichaels@franchisetimes.com.
 
Mary Jo LarsonMary Jo Larson is the publisher of Franchise Times Magazine and the Restaurant Finance Monitor.  You can find her on Twitter at
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