The new Creekside RV Park in Fruitvale reflects the beauty of what can happen when communities work together.
What was vacant property behind Fruitvale Memorial Hall, is now a serene campsite for as many as five RVs to park, take in the untamed landscape of Beaver Creek, stroll the walking paths, and enjoy all the hospitality Beaver Valley has to offer.
The $103,000 project came to fruition after a two-year collaboration between the village and Area A of the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary – Area A contributed $70,000 – as well as grants from the Southern Interior Development Trust, Columbia Basin Trust and local citizens who donated commemorative benches.
When parameters under the gas tax program loosened up, Area A Director Ali Grieve was looking for eligible projects that would benefit the Beaver Valley communities.
“When the village approached me about being a funding partner, I loved the idea,” Grieve said.
“The Fruitvale hall is a very well used facility with many weddings, community dances and family reunions,” she explained. “Why not pull your trailer up and spend the night?”
The site is an ideal location along the creek and handy to all the amenities in Fruitvale.
Grieve added, “A recent study done by the Trail and District Chamber of Commerce had indicated a shortage of full hook up camping spots in the area, so this was a perfect solution.”
A grand opening is in the works for next month. However, word about the new $25-per-night digs began to spread right from Day One.
“The first ones were the day it opened (announced) on our Facebook page notice,” Lila Cresswell, Fruitvale’s chief administrative officer told the Trail Times. “So far, there’s been lots of supportive comments from residents and several from users.”
For now, it’s first-come-first-serve for the five RV spots – the park is not appropriate for tenting because there are no washrooms on site.
“We are not taking reservations at present … we are still waiting for a couple of items,” Cresswell noted. “So in the meantime, registration envelopes are available outside the village office at 1947 Beaver Street, and payment can be put in those envelopes and dropped through the mail slot there.”
The park is fully serviced with RV electric, water, picnic tables and fire rings (for when campfires are permitted) as well as a free sani-dump.
Before the latter feature, the nearest RV dump stations were at Champion Lakes or the City of Trail campground next to Waneta Plaza.
“But there are also community amenities that are beneficial to our residents,” Cresswell pointed out, mentioning a walkway along the creek, greenery, and access to Beaver Creek with five benches for sitting and enjoying the view.
“The design of the project follows through on the elements in our downtown area Development Guidelines,” she said. “And tie into the design of our Railway Park, Cenotaph Park and cemetery design.”
As part of a tourism initiative under the village’s Strategic Plan and incorporating economic development, the idea first came up at Fruitvale council two years ago.
Cresswell said, “Creekside RV Park provides an opportunity for visitors to stay in the village and check out the local retailers and services.”
At the entrance of the 1970 Main Street locale, a list of rules are posted which include check out and quiet times, trash must be secured in the park’s bear-proof bin, and pets must be leashed or crated at all times.
With the RV park up and running, further improvements are still on the wish list.
“We included upgrades of the gardens around the hall also, to try and weave everything together,” Grieve shared. “It all turned out pretty darn good … We hope to connect a walkway to the Creekside Park one day too.”
RV Park view of Beaver Creek