The aim of the blog series “Pinewood Profiles” is to highlight some of the stories of the campers who chose us, and the campers who continually choose us year after year.
When we called for volunteers to be interviewed for Pinewood Profiles Tina O’Brien jumped at the chance. She and I met via phone on a cold March morning, and both remarked about how much we couldn’t wait for the warmer weather and Pinewood season to start.
Tina’s story is a special one. Her parents were Seasonals at Pinewood when she was young, and as an adult she even brought her own children to visit Pinewood during the summer. However, years passed, life got busy, and Tina and Pinewood *lost touch*. Until in 2015, when she and her husband decided to take their small camper to a local campground for the weekend. Tina said they camped at Pinewood that weekend, just once, and “that was it”. They had found their place.
Tina and her husband Bill live about 40 minutes from Pinewood. The year they “rediscovered” our campground, the couple packed their camping gear EVERY weekend and came to stay with us. They left work on Friday evening, loaded up the camper, and made the trek to Pinewood. Then, they packed up two days later to return home for the workweek, and repeated the process every single Friday. Now, if you’re an avid camper or trailer/motorhome owner you know it’s not an easy process to pack all of your required belongings, prepare your rig for travel, and check in and set up your campsite. Still, the couple faithfully did it. Tina says that every time they’d turn into Pinewood Road she and her husband would roll down their windows and inhale the smell of campfire, “We’d breathe in the smell and I’d say to him – smell that? Smells like we’re home. It’s our sanctuary”.
“Pinewood is our escape. We tell people about it all of the time. In fact, our friends call Pinewood by name: â€˜Oh, is this weekend a Pinewood weekend?’. They know it’s a special place for us”.
For Tina, Pinewood is a place to relax. Over the course of our conversation she remarked many times about the slow pace of our campground. “There’s no place like it. It’s like a blast from the past – you see kids riding their bikes, buying penny candy at the store, making friends with other campers. Fellow campers walk by our campsite and actually stop to say hello. You just don’t feel that kind of community many places anymore. It’s like it brings out the best in us”.
This year is an exciting one for Tina and Bill. They’ve decided to become Pinewood Seasonals and will now call Pinewood their permanent weekend summer home – which means no more packing and unpacking everything every single weekend! She says that she’s looking forward to days by the lake (her favorite Pinewood feature), nights by the campfire, and making even more new friends.
Thank you for choosing us, Tina. We are so glad you found us again.