KOA was started in 1968 by Garry’s parents, Verne and Violet
Cole, as the Wagon Wheel Campground. However, prior to the actual
start of camping here in this beautiful, beech woods, Verne and
Violet used to have visitors stay in the large farm house (where
Verne grew up), located just across the field to the south of
the campground. People would vacation here on the farm and help
do the chores, such as feeding the livestock and riding the horses.
Hence, the original business began as Farm Vacation.
wanted to bring their trailers and tents and stay back in the
woods. Verne cut the roads out with a Farmall H tractor and his
brush hog. Violet led the way in front of him by holding up a
shovel to show him where to drive. Thus, many of the roads you
drive on today were originally laid out back in the early 1970s.
Many of the campground
buildings were constructed with telephone poles abandoned by the
North Central Electric Cooperative when new power lines were installed.
The present office was the summer house at Garry’s great
aunt and uncle’s; it was moved down here by a flat bed trailer
and then Verne and Violet built around it using more telephone
poles. In this building they used to make apple butter in the
fall, and do clothes washing in the summer; due to lack of air
conditioning, they used to spend a lot of time here in the summer,
and thus it was called a summer house. The Western Cabin was the
old corn crib used at the farm, and Garry says he has shoveled
a good many bushels of ear corn from it to feed the livestock.
The Cottage was originally the post office for Chatfield, Ohio,
located about 12 miles west of here.
In 1991, Verne and
Violet decided to retire from the campground industry, after having
met many new friends and having had a great time. We (Garry and
Vicki Cole) purchased the campground immediately after that, deciding
that this business could be fun and challenging. Vicki was a music
teacher for 30 years (instrumental and vocal) and Garry had a
consulting engineering firm doing water and wastewater engineering.
From the time we purchased
the campground we have continually worked to improve it for today’s
campers and equipment. A fishing lake was first added, followed
by a heated swimming pool, hot tub, mini golf, banquet center
and catering facilities, pull thru sites and patio sites. Cabins
and lodges have been added for the camper who wants to camp, but
does not have a camping unit. The Cabins range from Kamping Kabins
to full service Lodges for your enjoyment.
Now, themed weekends
are done to entertain the campers during the weekend. Plus, we
do a multitude of activities for all ages that provide the opportunity
for special fun for all. So when you visit our campground, you
are enjoying a fun facility that has deep roots in history!