The swallows have returned to Capistrano, the Monarch Butterflies are back north from New Mexico, and the Barths will soon return to Milford, Ind.
Registration is under way at the Elkhart County Campgrounds for a rally of Barth RV owners who will gather June 14-17. Owners have already reserved 28 of the 29 sites originally reserved by organizer Nick Cagle, and so Cagle has just reserved another 10 sites for a total of 39. “This could be our best-attended get together yet,” he said.
Barth RVs were manufactured in Milford from 1963 to 1998, and are considered to be one of the better-made RV brands of all time.
Bill Napolitano, leader of Barthmobile.com, a website that boasts over 1,800 members, says, “We want folks who worked at the Barth factory to know that we appreciate the great coaches and trailers they produced, many of which are still in operation today.”
As an added bonus, the get-together will include representatives of The Barth Rangers, a group headed by Hank Wadley of Pell City, Alabama. “I’m excited at the prospect of being able to enjoy seeing so many Barths and visiting so many Barth fans at one event! There is nothing like a Barth and a gathering of this size has not happened anywhere since I bought my Breakaway model in 1996,” said Wadley.
Once again former employees will be invited to a barbecue put on by Barth owners at the fairgrounds. An extra effort will be made to reach all former employees in the area. Anyone within reach of the Fairgrounds who worked at the Barth factory or who is directly related to someone who did is invited to visit at noon Saturday, June 16, so Barthers can introduce themselves and welcome them to the event.
“No one need prepare any speeches, but we’d sure like to get to know these folks and thank them for a job well done,” said Cagle. “And we’ll treat them to a lunch to show our gratitude”, he said. People are encouraged to bring original pictures, literature or any other paraphernalia that they may have representing the factory or the Barths.
Cagle is asking anyone who had worked at the Barth factory to let him know through another Barthmobile.com member, Lou Thierwechter of Allegan, Mich., that they will be able to attend the gathering. Lou will compile a list of contact information for these folks and make sure they receive any updated information about the get-together prior to the event. He can be reached by phone at 269-673-2874, by mail at PO Box 547, Allegan, MI 49010, or by email (put “Barth” in the subject) at [email protected].