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Old 08-04-2004, 03:15 PM   #15
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WalMart Parking

During 2002, we made a 10,000 mile, 68 day trip across the United State from our residence in South Carolina through, I believe 28 States to Portland Oregon and return across the upper Mid-West through Minnesota, Illinois, Indiana, Pennsylvania, Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia, Kentucky and North Carolina, staying overnite in a record number of Wal Mart store locations and were always greeted with generouw welcome. Of course we purchased groceries and incidentals while parking there. We always felt secure and safe. While we never did it, in retrospect, it probably would have been wise of us to check with store management, but we felt secure that we would have been adviced by the store security personnel if we were not welcome
We Love MalWart!~!!
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Old 08-04-2004, 03:29 PM   #16
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Hi,
You can add the Walmart in Cape Coral (across the midpoint bridge from Fort Myers) to the do not park list for Florida. Saw a big sign there yesterday.
Bummer!
Marie
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Old 08-04-2004, 05:10 PM   #17
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BiggerbadBrad,

We found you can't stay at the Anaheim Plaza Walmart or Park City, Utah.

The biggest problems we have found with staying at Walmart, or Safeway, Target, etc. are the abusers. Those who stay longer than overnight. We have seen the following activities while staying at Wal Mart.

Extension of slide rooms-----poor overnight etiquette
Useage of BBQ and lawn chairs----poor overnight etiquette
Draining holding tanks in store storm drains----poor overnight etiquette
Extension of awnings and patio carpets-----poor overnight etiquette
There are a few who will ruin it for all of us. We must use these facilities sparingly and quietly. We have found more to add to the list above we can not overnight in.
They are Anaheim Plaza Wal Mart, California. Wal Mart leases the land. Landowner forbids.
Park City, Utah. It is posted at the entrance driveway.
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Old 08-04-2004, 06:14 PM   #18
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BTW - I've noticed that most WalMarts have a built in alarm clock. In most places where I've pulled into a WM they seem to being cleaning the parking lot right near the RV's at about 5:30am.
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Old 08-04-2004, 06:44 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swebster
BTW - I've noticed that most WalMarts have a built in alarm clock. In most places where I've pulled into a WM they seem to being cleaning the parking lot right near the RV's at about 5:30am.
I thought that was just our bad luck!!!!
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Old 08-07-2004, 04:57 PM   #20
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Wink Camping at WM

Two thoughts on parking at WalMart.

1st -
Some people we met said they no longer ask to stay overnight because of this conversation:
RVers - "May we stay overnight in your parking lot?"
Manager - "No."
Rvers - "But there are others parked out there."
Manager - "They didn't ask."
Rvers - "Um. So if we didn't ask..."
Manager - "We're required to say no if we're asked. Let's just say you didn't ask."

The only time we don't stay is if the neighborhood is really rundown, it's too noisy, or there is an ordinance posted.

2nd -
If you do stay, don't look like you are camping by putting out lawn chairs, grill, etc.
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Old 08-08-2004, 01:23 AM   #21
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Hi everyone,

This is a timely thread as Wal Mart and Home Depot (and other stores) just moved in a block from my house (my humming the HD jingle for months must have convinced them to come to the great white north!!!). Yesterday, there was an article in the local paper about RV parking at Wal Mart--one nearby resident complained (what's it to her anyway?), and apparently some of the nearby campgrounds were grumbling.

I did notice signage in the parking lot, stating no overnight parking--city ordinance, but there are always a dozen or so rigs parked in the far corner of the lot--mostly the huge diesel pushers heading to Alaska (we're on the main route). This lady complained about the fact that awnings and lawn chairs were set up, making it obvious that they were camped-out. The city bylaw department's response to the paper's queries is that "camping" is hard to define, thus hard to enforce. Are the RV'ers simply waiting for the store to open in the morning, or are they camping?

As a Mountie posted to this town, I used to be in uniform and would make late night patrols around the box store parking lots to make sure the RV visitors were safe from thieves, vandals, etc.--it never occured to me to write anyone a bylaw ticket. Why chase away tourists--we desperately need them for the local economy. The overnight store security didn't move them along either. The city's response to the issue seems to indicate that it knows how important the visitors are as well.

Let's see more Airstreamers heading north, EH!!!

Gary H.
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Old 08-08-2004, 07:28 AM   #22
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Maybe it's me but I just can't think of a worse place to camp (or shop).

We avoid Wal-Mart/Sam's Club at any cost.

Wal-Mart Watch

Yuk!
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Old 08-08-2004, 08:29 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coloradobus
BiggerbadBrad,

The biggest problems we have found with staying at Walmart, or Safeway, Target, etc. are the abusers. Those who stay longer than overnight. We have seen the following activities while staying at Wal Mart.
Yep! that preaty much says it all... these very things are the reasons why we can't stay overnight in most places... there is a walmart near me and last week saw a trailer with chairs out and small bbq with a dog on a blanket tied up... you get the picture.... first thought was he's the reason people cant stay in parking lots...
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Old 08-08-2004, 01:33 PM   #24
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FWIW Target doesn't allow parking, corporate policy.

John
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Old 08-08-2004, 05:00 PM   #25
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At the risk of starting a "which came first, chicken or egg" discussion about Walmarts and urban sprawl...

I personally think the Walmarts of the world encourage sprawl - around here anyhow they seem to come in right before a wave of subdivisions, new schools, more malls, quicky-lubes, etc. Regardless of their role, they certainly don't slow down all that "progress."

So in my opinion, without Walmarts, there'd still be the farms, open lands, and wooded lots that were there for decades before. The same places Airstreamers would stop for the night in the 1940's, 50's, and so on.

So if Walmart wants to be part of America's cultural fabric, it had better think twice before posting signs against sleeping in the parking lot. Traveling place to place at will, without rhyme or reason is practically a constitutional right in this country, and while sleeping in a parking lot certainly isn't my idea of the great outdoors, if we've gotten to the point where we're gleefully paving over the entire country, we'd better not be turned away when we need to stop for the night.

It reminds me of people who move into subdivisions knowing that a nearby wild animal rescue has been operating for decades. Soon enough though, all those families are lined up at city hall, demanding the rescue be shut down for the slim chance an animal might escape.

It's an issue of who was here first, and in most cases, even if our trailers weren't physically there, Airstream was here first. Dammit.
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Old 08-12-2004, 05:34 AM   #26
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Old 08-12-2004, 05:37 AM   #27
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Wal Mart Police

Coloradobus: And just who made you the enforcer of rules? If I want to put out my slide ( I dont) why should you be upset? Does Wal Mart really care? Are you just a busy body with nothing better to do? Where did you get these etiquette rules? Miss manners?
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Old 08-12-2004, 06:15 AM   #28
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Originally Posted by moisheh
If I want to put out my slide ( I dont) why should you be upset? Does Wal Mart really care?
Yes, they do care. In order to extend slides on many motorhomes the jacks first have to be down. 35,000 lbs. sitting on 4 relatively small points damages asphalt quickly. I am sure one of the reasons courtesy parking is allowed is Walmart believes they are making money from the RVers as they move from area to area. When they loose money either because of damage, clean up costs, or legal battles it will be gone across the board.

It is all about perception if the RV world wishes to continue to use free stops such as these. I just added 2 Walmarts and a Sam's Club to the list that banned parking because area campground owners perceived they were loosing business and convinced the local city of this. I have seen lots with half a dozen RVs with lawn chairs out, generators running, awnings extended, etc. A few pictures over a couple of months is a lot of ammunition to go to city council with. Use it, don't abuse it.

John
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