A voice from inside Mountainview RV Park
I am writing in relation to the stories that have appeared on behalf of the residents of Park Avenue in Clarke’s Beach. I sit back each time and read the articles and comments and each time it makes me more frustrated. I am one of the park residents and my RV is located near the chain link gate (not the new expansion area) but the first entrance which is located right as you take the sharp turn on Park Avenue.
My RV has been in the same spot for nine years. In 2002, four new sites were made and the only entrance/exit we had was the chain link gate. We have been using that gate since that time and now all of a sudden we are not allowed to use the gate anymore; it is an emergency exit only, which until this year we had no idea — and no one had an issue with it.
This year, park owner Ernie Mugford applied for an expansion and got the goahead and for some reason the residents on Park Avenue were fine with it until May when we started our season of camping. Since that time we have come under fire from three or four of the residents on Park Avenue. And I read what they are saying from week-to-week.
Well, I now have to let you know what we, as park residents, have to listen to each week from the people that you include in your stories.
Until recently, we had no choice but to use the gate to get to our RVs (only the six sites that are located behind that gate, it isn’t a thoroughfare through the park). After a week of working we have gone out to find the entrance blocked by residents of Park Avenue and name-calling from them as well.
I, myself, when going through the gate and closing it behind me, was called a “ f*#$ing nuisance” by one resident. I guess because I ignored shouting out from his house. My parents, who also have an RV next to mine, were called names as they entered the park one weekend. At that time I approached Ernie and said that we need a new way to get to our trailers. He cut down a tree to give us access to our sites. Only a small vehicle can go through there.
So, since then we have not been using the gate. The gate was locked and the six RVs who used that gate had keys for emergencies. The council told Ernie the gate wasn’t to be locked, so we took the lock off. Now people use the gate to walk through, some not even from the park.
It seems the Park Avenue residents don’t want us even walking on Park Avenue, a public road and at the end of that public road is a public park. This Labour day weekend, a Park Avenue resident came through the gate, seemingly intoxicated. He swung the gate open so hard that it damaged one of the campers’ car, and there was approximately $600 in damages to his vehicle. The Park Avenue resident has agreed to pay the damages, but only after he was told there were witnesses.
This resident came in shouting for Ernie and said that Ernie had been seen throwing beer bottles at his house. Mr. Mugford was home in bed that same night with gout in his foot and could hardly walk. Also, this past week four other park residents were walking up Park Avenue only to be told by another resident to “go home you bunch of low-lives.”
Also, another woman in our park was walking up Park Avenue with her six-monthold baby in a stroller. A truck with the muffler very loud pulled up next to her and revved the engine so loud that it frightened the baby. We also had nails placed across the entrance way for the gate, and a flat tire was caused to another one of the camper’s vehicle.
The same issue of The Compass last week had a positive story about RV parks in the Trinity South area. It should have the same impact in Clarke’s Beach, and I am sure it does, except for a handful of people who have issues that really shouldn’t be taken out on the campers.
From what I know and have read, Park Avenue resident Mildred Snow and Ernie Mugford have some issues from years ago. Dan Morrissey and Max Ollerhead have only recently moved to their houses, one this past spring or so and the other within the last couple of years. But that doesn’t give them the right to be initiating confrontations between the campers in the park. In the area that I am in, except for myself and my spouse, the people are in their 60s and 70s. We are not a bunch of teenagers causing disturbances.
Last week, there were 31 airstream RVs/motorhomes from all over the United States. You were invited to come down and do a story or talk to the people from United States, especially since this year was the 10th anniversary of 9-11, and because of all of the negativity that has been given to the park. You didn’t show up.
On Aug. 29, three of the motorhomes had to exit the park onto Park Avenue because they couldn’t make the turn to get out of the park the other way. You were there in no time. Park Avenue was blocked so that they couldn’t leave. Well, I guess their respect for some
Newfoundlanders must have changed that day. But then again, they didn’t have any trouble anywhere else in Newfoundland this summer. I spoke to some of them myself while they were in the park and they had nothing but good things to say about our hospitality; not sure what they thought after they tried to leave.
Whatever is between the residents and Ernie Mugford should stay between them and let them fight it out. Don’t take it out on the campers of that park. We just want to spend our weekends at our RVs peacefully. Not to mention the money we put into the community. I personally spend between $100 and $150 per weekend. Multiply that by about 150 other RVs and it adds up to quite a bit of money being spent in and around that area.
The season is coming to a close and we normally leave our RV there year-round. We even pay for a streetlight in our area — a little over $200 per year — for lighting security. This year I am not so confident that damage won’t come to our RVs.
Jo Ann Chaulk writes from Portugal Cove-St. Phillip’s