Making camping more comfortable and even glamorous − glamping − may have begun as far back as Teddy Roosevelt.
When he spent the night outside in Yosemite’s Mariposa Grove with John Muir in 1903, he covered the ground with 40 woolen blankets before settling in for the night.
In bringing “glamping” to Northeast Ohio several years ago, Jenny Myers chose to name her enterprise on Lattasburg Road, just outside of Wooster, Roosevelt Glamping after the 26th president.
“He was the original glamper,” she said.
But the camping experience she offers goes way beyond a cozy pile of blankets to a truly luxurious stay in the great outdoors.
Over the last few years Myers has elevated it to an art form with extensive personal evaluation of all the components of setting up a tent and incorporating multiple amenities, starting with the tent itself.
She attends industrial trade shows every year.
Myers custom-designed a canvas tent
“It took me two years to research tent manufacturing. This is the thickest canvas on the market,” she said, highlighting a tent she custom-designed herself.
It is set up on her family’s bucolic 60 acres featuring a creek, waterfalls and woods on land that has been in the family for many years.
This particular tent − one of three accommodations on the property that include a stationary Creekside Safari Tent and Hidden Valley Cabin − is completely mobile with a fully furnished or basic package.
“I can pack all this up and put it in your backyard,” Myers said of the pop-up tent rental, complete with selected accoutrements, such as a coffee bar, balloon swag, laser lights, portable grill, and a s’mores basket.
It also can be transported to campgrounds, state parks, or a location of choice.
Myers equips the tent with real beds − “never a blowup” − and can hook up heat or air conditioning.
“We like to spoil our guests,” she said, employing “over-the-top amenities” and special touches, ranging from robes to flowers and a welcome note.
Camp chairs, area rugs, nightstands and more amenities
Other accessories which can be chosen from a comprehensive list are camp chairs, area rugs and nightstands, in addition to electric or propane heaters, portable grills and campfire starters.
“I have taken all the work out of glamping,” Myers said.
While Myers anticipates branching out in the market, much of her business so far has been clients enjoying the benefits glamping services offer for special occasions.
Lindsay Pollock of Newbury said after tossing around ideas for her son’s 15th birthday they came up with camping out in the backyard, but weren’t interested in “roughing it.”
Pollock described it as “no small effort” for Roosevelt Glamping to drop off and install the tent and all of its additional features, not to mention dismantle it at the end of the event.
Five birthday guests enjoyed it and “were all really comfortable.”
“They thought it was cool,” she said, praising the “really cutely” decorated space using “fun signs and pictures.”
Her son and his friends “hung out, did sleep a little bit and enjoyed the plush accommodations,\” she said, calling the experience “a special event kind of thing.”
Michelle Ogden of Wooster used Roosevelt Glamping for her daughter’s 13th birthday after seeing the glamping tent setup at this year\’s Wayne County Home and Garden Show.
Nice to have ‘actual beds’ while camping
“We like to camp and would use it again,” Ogden said of the service. “(Myers) thought of all the little details,” which were “all much appreciated.”
The family used it for two nights, Ogden said, commending the “actual beds” and the fact the tent definitely seemed more sturdy than a typical tent.
A queen-sized bed is one of the options.
Myers’ setup for Ogden’s family included five single-sized beds, a projector to see the stars, a message board, and lanterns inside and outside.
Also appealing were the optimal air flow and the tent staying dry.
Roosevelt Glamping\’s ability to customize for a client is “awesome,” Ogden said.
Debbie Sebolt of North Lawrence said in an email she \”thought the whole glamping experience was different. I am not a camper, so this was something out of the ordinary.
“I surprised my husband for our 33rd wedding anniversary with the tent set up in our backyard and had a staycation.”
Even though it happened to be very hot for the occasion, Sebolt said, “Jenny did a fabulous job decorating and making a very comfortable atmosphere.”
Myers is hoping to expand her business into campgrounds and special festivals.
Campgrounds are adapting to the needs of larger units, like glamping tents, according to Adria Bergeron, director of marketing and communications for the Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District.
Bergeron pointed out there are different definitions of glamping.
‘I would say (glamping) is trending’
A cursory look on the Internet yields camping possibilities across the state in campers, treehouses, tiny cabins, yurts, teepees and even shipping containers and a caboose.
Renovations to campgrounds, particularly for power sources, are being made to accommodate larger camping units, including at Charles Mill Lake and Pleasant Hill, Bergeron said.
Those are the sites on busy weekends that fill up first, she said.
“I would say (glamping) is trending,” she said, calling it a good opportunity for investment.
Myers grew up camping with her grandparents in Michigan, and has combined her love for it with her background in sales and marketing and a flair for decorating.
She continues to look for ways to make glamping special and even suggests the pop-up tent as a venue for a marriage proposal. It can also function as auxiliary space for a family reunion.
“I wanted to bring something unique here (to Northeast Ohio),” Myers said.
This article originally appeared on Ashland Times Gazette: Glamping: Area business offers a luxury camping experience
published 2023-08-05 16:46:55