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The Creek Side Resort is situated on 18 acres of land on the outskirts of Hays, Kansas. There are a total of 69 sites available for reservations, with three of those being cabins and about half of the RV sites supporting tent camping, provided the space isn’t already occupied. Each RV site offers 30 and 50-amp capabilities, with 48 sites offering full hookups. Some common amenities for all guests of the resort include “Flicks @ the Crick,” where movies are shown outside in the resort’s outdoor theater; the Creek Side Corner Store, where various RV supplies and propane is sold; and the Fire Side Fort with showers, vending machines, and laundry facilities. Many people staying at the park are visiting the area for the sports coliseum at Fort Hays State University and for RPM Speedway, according to Aaron, the owner of the RV park.
According to Kac’rae, a manager at the Creek Side Resort, the campground is situated on the outskirts of town. The property encompasses a total of 18 acres, offering a combination of units, including 69 RV sites and 11 cabins. With regard to the RV spaces, 48 of them are pull-through sites, with the remaining 21 sites requiring guests to back in. A majority of these sites are also equipped with full 30 and 50-amp hookups. A fire pit is located next to all of the RV spaces set aside for short-term stays. Aaron, the owner of the property, also mentions that four premium RV sites with concrete pads have fire pits and picnic tables.
Currently, three cabins are available for guest reservation, labeled cabins one through three. All of these cabins feature a partial kitchen, bathroom, and living space with an electric fireplace, as well as a lofted bed. While typically rented on a nightly basis, Kac’rae says that the cabins can also host people for multiple days or weeks, if necessary.
The final form of accommodation offered on the property is tent camping. Those who wish to tent camp may do so in sites one through thirty-three, as long as they are available. As such, many of the same amenities available to those in an RV are provided for those in tents on the sites, namely the picnic tables. Additionally, during the warmer months of the year, Creek Side Resort may host what it calls “Flicks @ the Crick,” where all of the guests staying at the campground are invited to watch a movie at the property’s outdoor theater. This outdoor space can also be used to host other events such as live music performances and private gatherings. Those staying at the park also have access to the Fire Side Fort, which contains four sets of washers and dryers, a gym, bathrooms with showers, and a common area with vending machines. An ADA-accessible shower is available in the main office elsewhere on the property.
Guests requiring additional supplies may visit the resort’s Creek Side Corner Store, which offers an array of camping and RV supplies as well as local novelty items and propane canisters. Other general amenities include a dog park where people can let their dogs off their leashes, feeding the ducks in the park’s duck pond, and gathering by the community firepit. Children may also play on the playground on the west side of the resort.
Outside of the Creek Side Resort, there are a number of other attractions that guests can visit. The largest draw to the area, according to Aaron, the owner of the RV resort, is Fort Hays State University, mainly to visit the college’s sports coliseum for various events and activities. Many patrons have also visited RPM Speedway to watch a variety of races involving stock cars, monster trucks, and other types of racecars. Kac’rae describes the property’s location in relation to these attractions and the city of Hays itself as being “outside of town but close enough” to still visit the city. Hays has a number of different historic sites, museums, shops, and restaurants that people can visit. For example, those interested in learning more about the history of the region may visit the Fort Hays State Historic Site, which has a visitors center providing such information. With regard to restaurants, Aaron recommends that guests try Thirsty’s Brew Pub and Grill, which is locally owned; Defiance Brewing Company for their wood-fired pizza; and Lomatos Pizza, as they can deliver to the campground.
Concerning how management wants guests to feel when they stay at the Creek Side Resort, Kac’rae, the resort’s manager, says that “we want them to feel comfortable” and she hopes that visitors can feel a part of the community. One of the goals that she and the staff of the park have is to make it feel like a “home away from home” for patrons. In order to accomplish this, the park strives to have someone available at almost all times of the day just in case a visitor may need something. Because of this, many of the staff members, including Kac’rae, try to interact with guests throughout the week, whether it be on the grounds of the property or on the park’s social media channels.
As part of the goal to make the resort comfortable and feel like a community, there are a few policies that guests are asked to follow for the duration of their stay. Some of the most important include no parking on the grass, ensuring that all sites are kept clean and do not have anything lying around, and following the enforced quiet time from 10:00 PM to 7:00 AM. Pets are allowed to stay with guests; however, they must be picked up after and kept on a leash at all times. The only exception to the leash rule is for the fenced-in dog park.
Generally, the busiest time of year for the park occurs between April and the end of October, mainly due to school being out for the summer. A number of people who have stayed at Creek Side Resort in the past have left positive reviews regarding their experiences. One former guest remarks that “the pull-through sites are big enough for the longest rigs and toads.” They go on to say that “the bath house was clean and very large,” a sentiment shared by other guests.
The Creek Side Resort was opened in June of 2019 by Aaron Dreher, who is the original owner of the property. Before the RV resort was built, the land was simply a field. Having lived in Hays for many years, Aaron saw that there was an opportunity to build a campground for the community. He decided to buy the acreage and, in March 2019, began building the park. The resort initially had a total of 36 sites, and since opening, Aaron has added an additional 33. Aaron says that the park has “been in constant growth since we’ve opened,” and he has further plans to add walking trails around the property, build an outdoor gamepad near the Fire Side Fort, and finish additional cabins in which guests can stay.