Column: Entertaining Campers

(Mirror) On one of my first gay camping trips I made a point of reserving a site as far from the activity center as possible. My preconceived notion of camping was one of quiet in the woods. I found that, and also found myself quickly drawn away from my quiet spot to the real fun.

A mainstay amenity of major gay campgrounds is entertainment. Stage performances, drag shows, and musical presentations to participatory activities like pool games, scavenger hunts, survivor recreations, bingo, euchre tournaments and any number of other activities keep guests involved and occupied. 

Swimming pools are often the center of social life and the pool is where activity and entertainment settle in for the day. Though some close their pools around sunset, Sawmill in Central Florida takes the party to Splash Bar for a Friday night pool party complete with lasers and a DJ, the place to be before Woody's opens for shows and late night dancing. At Oz in Central Georgia, the spa adjacent to the poolside bar heats up after dark. 

During a visit to a gay campground your chances of coming in contact with a drag show are high. Typically one name reigns supreme at each property and usually for good reason. She draws the crowd or the crowd demands her. Styles vary with the culture of the local demographic and not finding one drag queen particularly appealing in no way means the next won't strike you as wonderful. After all, drag is an art form, though some will argue that point, and each performer expresses their art in a different style. Aggy Dune at Jones Pond in Western New York produces full length one person shows including spectacular costumes, convincing impersonations and live comedy. 

In the mid Atlantic states music and dance can take center stage. The Woods Campground in Lehighton, Pennsylvania, and Hillside Campgrounds in New Milford, Pennsylvania, draw their visitors from the major metropolitan areas along the Eastern Seaboard and what does a professional signer or dancer do on a Saturday night in the woods? Why they put on a show! You will likely be treated to a high quality performance by trained voice professionals and Broadway dancers. A Cabaret in the tiny recreation hall at Hillside Campgrounds transforms the space into a concert hall and shows at The Woods are dominated by a professional light show you would pay a great deal to see on a New York City stage or in Times Square on New Year’s Eve.

Off peak periods and midweek days also churn out entertainment for smaller groups. Potluck dinners, local group field trips and hiking keep campers socializing. Movie nights make for intimate evenings in small venues across many gay campgrounds as most have at least some indoor common space that transforms for the activity of the moment. Joe's Hideaway in New Hampshire rounds up campers for an evening hay ride to view the sunset over a nearby lake.

Some gay campgrounds are more traditional camps, leaving campers to entertain themselves with camping activities like campfires, reading or relaxing in a hammock. Camp David in North Central Florida goes quiet at dark. Camp Mars near Florida's Lake Okeechobee hosts its Saturday evening pot luck dinner. Vitambi Springs Resort and Campground near Clewiston, Florida provides a cozy television room to keep up with your favorite shows.

Choosing your gay camping destination will be driven by many options. Where your friends want to visit, a proximate location, amenities or entertainment options all come into theconsideration. All gay campgrounds have their own cultures and knowing whether the days and nights are filled with quiet solitude or constant and even raucous activity will certainly make your visit more complete and fulfilling. 

Gay Campgrounds in Florida 

Vitambi Springs
28280 Etumakee Way

Clewiston
863-983-8488

Vitambi.com

Sawmill
21710 US 98

 Dade City 
352-583-0664

FLSawmill.com

Camp David
CampDavidFlorida.com
2000 S Bishop Point Rd, Inverness FL 34450
352-344-3445

Camp Mars
CampMars.com
326 Goff Rd  Venus, FL 33960
863-699-6277

Florida Gay Campgrounds

Camp David

2000 South Bishop's Point Road Inverness, Florida 34450 – campdavidflorida.com

The only clothing optional men's campground in Florida 

Camp Mars

326 Goff Road Venus, Florida 33960 – campmars.com

The boardwalk is beautiful through a true Florida swamp

Resort on Carefree Boulevard 

3000 Carefree Boulevard Fort Meyers, Florida 33917 - esortoncb.com

Carefree is a lifestyle community where you can be you

Sawmill Camping Resort

21710 US Hwy 98 Dade City, Florida 33523 – flsawmill.com

Where camping meets nightlife

Southern Comfort Campgrounds

50 SE 74th Ave Cross City, FL 32628 - southerncomfortcampground.net

Open everyday to everyone 

Vitambi Springs

28280 Etumakee Way Clewiston, Florida 33440 – vitambi.com

Camping in the real Florida wilderness


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