MARION TWP — One family's hard work to build a small, tumble-down campground into a vacation destination for camping families has been awarded for the fourth time.
Yogi Bear's Jellystone Park, at Kozy Rest on Campground Road outside of Harrisville, was named Park of the Year last month by the National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds.
They also received the honor in 2011, 2014 and 2015.
Gary Quigley, co-owner of the park, said his father quit his job in 2000 and sunk every dime he had into the run-down campground that had very little business.
“If it didn't work out, we had nothing left,” Quigley said.
He said his mother, father, sister and he used every little bit of profit earned from the few campers who used the park to upgrade the campground and add new features each year.
Today, in addition to 170 camping sites, the park boasts a pool, two jumping pads, playgrounds, pedal cars, a miner's sluice, miniature golf course, ice cream parlor, store, dog park, themed weekends, 14 rental cabins and two yurts.
Quigley said he often thinks back to the condition of the park and the inexperience of his family when they bought the park, especially when he receives an award.
“It's an incredible honor,” he said. “I never dreamed we could accomplish something like this.”