Feature Article - September/October 2013

One for All, And All for Fun

A Look at Recreation & Sporting Goods Incentives

By Emily Tipping

Pitch a Tent

According to the "American Camper Report" produced by the Outdoor Foundation in partnership with Coleman and KOA, camping participation is growing. In 2011, the report says, 42.5 million Americans—or 14.9 percent of the U.S. population over age 6—went camping. The rate is up from 39.9 million (14.1 percent) in 2010.

The increase in camping participation was partially driven by weather issues, higher gas prices and the state of the economy. But in addition to this, the idea of camping has expanded its appeal.

From 2010 to 2011, lifestyle/travel packs and bags, as well as tents and shelters, saw double-digit increases in sales, with sales of lifestyle/travel packs and bags increasing by 18.4 percent, and tents and shelters increasing by 13.7 percent, according to the "American Camper Report. Sleeping bags saw the third highest increase, at 9.7 percent. Tents were named the most essential piece of camping gear to take on an outing, and battery lighting was especially popular among campers older than 45.

"Some of the most innovative items from our Wenzel camping line are quickly moving their way to the top," Knollenberg said. "The Vortex AirPitch tent revolutionized camping by taking the traditional fiberglass tent poles and replacing them with inflatable AirPoles, providing a no-assembly-required tent that inflates in less than a minute. Simply use the included dual-action manual pump, and your tent is ready in no time. When the trip is over, the tent deflates in seconds, so you can get back on the road quickly."

Air mattresses are also popular items for campers who love a little comfort. "Another must-have for a night away from home," Knollenberg said, "is the Serta Raised Queen Airbed with integrated NeverFlat pump. For a better night's sleep, set your Serta airbed to a desired firmness (plush, medium, firm) and the innovative NeverFlat pump system will continuously monitor air pressure, automatically engaging a silent secondary pump to maintain your comfort settings without waking you."

For those who want to relax in comfort at the campsite, the Coleman Broadband Quad Chair is a great choice. It features a breathable mesh seat for ultimate cooling, and is durable with a strong steel frame with heavy-duty polyester fabric and breathable mesh. It is also practical, with its built-in mesh cup holder and built-in pocket on the back.

And when all you want is to know what the heck was that noise over in the trees, a light is just the thing you need. From Brinkmann, the new Q-Beam Compact LED Rechargeable Spotlight has a powerful 3 Watt LED that produces up to 195 lumens, with a maximum runtime of six hours. With the rubber molding on the handle for sure grip and comfort, and a shatter-resistant tempered lens, this spotlight has great durability.

And, of course, people often engage in other activities while they're camping. The most common activities, according to the report include hiking (76 percent), outdoor cooking (32 percent), fishing (23 percent), trail running (20 percent), kayaking (18 percent) and photography (18 percent).

Want to help them cook something up? Coleman's Party Grill is portable and fun. Lightweight and compact, it loves to travel and is always ready to cook. It's easy to use, with a setup that takes minutes. And with the PerfectFlow and Instastart system on board, this grill is easy to use. It's little, but powerful, with 8,000 BTU spread across.