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Parking somewhere new: Lifetime RV moves from Moorhead to West Fargo

Mike Burns, general manager of Lifetime RV, stands in one of the service areas with some park trailers in the background at the West Fargo location. Dave Wallis / The Forum1 / 5
Park trailers are lined up for sale at Outlet Recreation.com's Lifetime RV division after a move from Moorhead to West Fargo. Dave Wallis / The Forum2 / 5
Park models, which look more like conventional homes with siding and shingles on the roof, are lined up for sale at Outlet Recreation.com's Lifetime RV division after a move from Moorhead to West Fargo. Dave Wallis / The Forum3 / 5
Side bays slide out to add more room to a park trailer. Park trailers and park models have to be less than 400 square feet. Dave Wallis / The Forum4 / 5
Mike Larson is co-owner of Outlet Recreation.com.Dave Wallis / The Forum5 / 5

WEST FARGO—An extended-stay trailer dealer has relocated after nearly 30 years in Moorhead, and the move means West Fargo will now account for a big part of all campers sold in North Dakota.

The move to 1721 Main Ave. E. in West Fargo puts Outlet Recreation.com's Lifetime RV division just blocks away from the company's main store at 2249 Main Ave. E. in West Fargo.

The Lifetime division, which formerly operated as Larry's RV at 3002 24th Ave. S. in Moorhead until it became Lifetime RV when it was bought in 2015, took the place of Outlet Recreation.com's former rental operation now at its main store.

The division specializes in park models, which are designed to be parked on a lot and look more like a conventional home with siding and roof shingles, as well as park trailers that are larger extended-stay trailers with RV-type amenities and rubber roofs.

"Now we have that offering and it's only a couple blocks away so people can look at both the park models and regular towable trailers in the same area," said Mike Larson, co-owner of Outlet Recreation.com

The recent consolidation into West Fargo also required the company to build a new shop space on the other side of Main Avenue.

Between Outlet Recreation.com's two stores and the separately owned Adventure RV, 1220 Main Ave. W., Larson said West Fargo will now be the sales site of 40 percent of all campers sold in North Dakota.

Part of that concentration, he said, is the RV business "gobbles up a lot of land" with its big products and large inventory, and land is more available and affordable there.

"But West Fargo's been good to work with, and it's definitely a vibrant economy," he said.

The Lifetime division annually sells 50 to 60 park models, which range from $50,000 to $70,000, depending on options. Compared to larger extended-stay trailers that cost $30,000 to $50,000, Larson said it's not much more money to get more of a traditional home feel.

Park models, for example, have central air conditioning units on the outside, along with regular siding and shingled roofs. These units are typically set up semi-permanently on lake lots or campground sites as the owner's vacation home, he said.

While they can be spacious, with many including 4-foot-high lofted sleeping areas and larger appliances, General Manager Mike Burns said park models are always less than 400 square feet because anything bigger is classified as a mobile home.

Park models can be a "tricky" item, according to Larson, because they require a commercial hauler and an overwidth permit to move. Many RV and camper dealers simply don't offer this option, he said, and that makes the Lifetime division a unique offering that draws customers from a wide area.

"We just sold one of the park models to central Wisconsin," he said.

Outlet Recreation.com will hold its 10th annual rummage sale Jan. 19-22 at its two West Fargo locations.

Business profile

What: Outlet Recreation.com's Lifetime RV division

Where: 1721 Main Ave. E., West Fargo

Hours: 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday

Phone: (701) 532-0879

Online: www.lifetimervdealer.com

Ryan Johnson

Ryan Johnson has been a Forum reporter since 2012 and previously wrote for the Grand Forks Herald.

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