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Big Bear RV Park is a family-owned RV park that is currently in business in Palmer, Alaska, next to the city of Wasilla. While the campground is located on the outskirts of town, it is just off of the main highway and is surrounded by industrial and residential lots, so visitors can find a blend of being close to grocery stores and restaurants while still having a way to find nearby hiking trails and lakes. Palmer, Alaska, is also the city where the Alaska State Fair takes place in the fall.
There are 65 sites available to the public on the eleven acres of land that make up Big Bear RV Park. Most of the sites—53 of them to be precise—are RV sites with a large variety of hookups. They have 50 and 30 AMP "super sites," along with 30 AMP regular sites. Additionally, they have six tent sites and six cabins that guests can rent if they would like. Cabins come with a half-bath, full-sized bed with bedding, an electric heater and ceiling fan, a mini-fridge, microwave, television, picnic table, and simple furnishings, like a table and chairs. The tent sites each have a fire ring and a picnic table on site.
The property does have a store where they sell souvenirs, firewood, toiletries, and other camping essentials. Big Bear RV Park has a large pavilion on the property that can house much bigger groups and provides a more considerable amount of seating, an area to play games, and even a gas-lit firepit. The campsites tend to be more widespread, so guests can find privacy to be easier for both themselves and their pets. The campground also owns a small playground that can be found in the center of the campsites. Firepits and a picnic table are located at each site as well. Big Bear RV Park has several other amenities that guests can take advantage of if they would like, such as a laundry room with a TV, a phone, tables and chairs, book and video exchange, and ironing supplies. Free portable water is open to all guests, as well as a propane filling station, air compressor for rig tires, propane grills, and a horseshoe pit.
Going beyond the property line, visitors can find a number of things to do in the area. There are several hiking trails, including Wasilla Creek Boardwalk Trail, and lakes that can be used for water-based activities (such as Matanuska Lake). Due to the fact that the campground is located near the outskirts of town, it tends to be easier to find a spot to observe some of the natural Alaskan wildlife.
The goal of Big Bear RV Park is to create an atmosphere that is both clean and family-friendly. The current owner, Rachel Gittlein, says she wants guests to be able to relax and enjoy their faction while staying at the campground.
The property has received a number of reviews from visitors who have visited in the past. Many of them tend to mention the large amounts of landscaped grass and property, which according to several of them, is not common in Alaskan RV parks. One person writes, "Great clean small campground. There's a few full hookups but mostly water and electric sites. Beautiful views of the mountains in the background. Cleanest bathhouse I've ever seen with good music playing in the background and hairdryers ready to use."
One thing that Palmer, Alaska has been known for is holding the Alaska State Fair. At the Alaska State Fair, vendors from all over and carrying a variety of products will come and serve different kinds of food while a number of events take places, such as concerts, acrobats, rides, animals, and they will hold a contest for the largest vegetables grown and judge flower gardens. While the Alaska State Fair is a seasonal event that only takes place during the end of August and the beginning of September, guests can visit the Alaska Native Heritage Center year-round and learn about the historical people of Alaska. The Alaska Native Heritage Center is a museum that is dedicated to preserving the history and culture of the Native Alaskans. In the summer, the museum allows guests to enroll and learn a traditional Alaskan native dance and watch art being created using traditional techniques.
Big Bear RV Park was first established as an RV park about 16 years ago, in 2005. The property is owned and operated by a woman named Rachel Gittlen. Growing up in Palmer, she saw that there was a general need for an RV Park in the area, so people would be able to bring their homes with them when they visit the city. Before it was founded as Big Bear RV Park in the mid-2000s, the property was a farm that grew hay before it was sold to Rachel and her family and has been run by them ever since.