Houston June Boat Show June 22-26, 201

See the great selection available at the summer boat show with Ron Hoover!

Show Admission/Hours

Show Hours

June 22nd-24th
1 PM – 9 PM
June 25th
10 AM – 9 PM
June 26th
11 AM – 5 PM

Admission :   Children 5 and under are free, children ages 6-12 are $5.00 each and adults 13 and up are $12.00 each

Only cash will be accepted at the ticket windows. Credit cards are not accepted at the ticket windows. The onsite ticket windows will open 30 minutes prior to show opening and close 30 minutes prior to show closing.

 Parking at Reliant Center

$12.00 Per Day for Onsite Parking – Cash Only

Ron Hoover Houston Grand Opening

State’s largest RV, boat retailer opens doors on Katy location


Dozens gathered at Ron Hoover RV and Marine’s grand opening of its ninth location in Katy this past Thursday, April 28. The 11-acre, 90,000 square-foot facility contains 19 service bays, large parts and accessory areas and accommodates up to 30 RVs and 50 boats.

The Katy Rancher       yourkatynews.com


Posted: Friday, April 29, 2016 8:31 pm

By Landan Kuhlmann

What began as a little shop in Rockport TX has grown into the Lone Star State’s largest RV and boat retailer, and they are bringing the experience to Katy.

This past Thursday, April 28, Ron Hoover RV and Marine celebrated the grand opening of its ninth Texas location with a ribbon cutting at 29029 Katy Freeway. The 11-acre, 90,000-square-foot facility will include 19 service bays as well as a large parts and accessory area. It will accommodate up to 30 RVs and 50 boats for service.

When Ron Hoover RV and Marine President and CEO Chris Hoover approached the city, Katy City Council Member Chuck Brawner said it was immediately clear the two had mutual interests, and an alliance was formed.

“It’s been a great relationship between Mr. Hoover and the city of Katy and you can see the outcome of that,” Brawner said of the company’s flagship store. “When the city and developers/business owners come and work together, you’re going to have a fine operation—this a beautiful operation and it’s going to be a benefit to the city of Katy.”


Hoover’s father began the business nearly three decades ago, and it quickly spread from their hometown of Rockport down to the Valley, west to San Antonio and quickly to the north side of Houston. However, he quickly came to the realization that the city contained an entire population in the western portion of the city which was underserved.

Eventually the company opened its doors on Barker Cypress Road, but still felt as though a portion of Houston’s west suburbs was in need and made a move.

The right fit

Hoover says they knew of the need to expand, but for years simply had no room to do so on the Barker Cypress campus, leading to partnering with the city about two years ago on a tract of land the company had owned for a decade.

“The stars just weren’t aligning, but finally everything settled in and here we are,” he said “We always knew we wanted to be here. We had the right people, we had the right product—we knew we just needed the right facility.”

The rest was a match made in heaven.

“The city of Katy fits us very well—we’re small town kind of people,” Hoover said. “We like the small town feel and just thought Katy made a lot of sense.”

Additionally, Katy’s family dynamics mesh well with what Hoover says is a growing recreational activity.

“The biggest difference is that younger families are making RVing a priority in their lives because they realize it is a cost-effective and fun way to spend time with family and friends,” he said of the rising level of RV ownership.

Brawner said approving the new facility fits with Katy’s “open for business” economic development mentality, which he said was one of Mayor Fabol Hughes’ primary focuses upon taking office.

Such an attitude has led to the city ending up with several projects planned up and down the Interstate 10 frontage road in both directions, such as a a Buc’cees soon to built across the freeway from Hoover and other potential developments extending down to Woods Road which he believes will even further benefit the city.

“If we can have businesses come in here and develop a good tax base on the commercial side, then we can improve our services to our citizens,” he said. “We’ve been lowering the tax rate two cents per year for the last three years. When you have a development like this that’s going to prosper, the city prospers.”

Employees hold the key

Ron Hoover’s RV and Marine’s newest location will employ 45 staff members year-round. Hoover says that group holds the key to the location’s success, and in that vein significant efforts have been made to provide the most comfortable environment possible.

“We wanted each salesman to have a home. All of our service technicians have a home. We have specific areas for all of our parts people and all of our service people,” he said. “We wanted a good facility that was well-suited towards an employee home.”

““We think that with good employees we’ll get the best customers, and that’s what we’re here to do,” he added.

Symbiotic relationship

Attracting businesses such as Ron Hoover serves a two-fold purpose and is part of a relationship in furthering Katy’s economic development while also benefitting both business owners and residents of the community.

“Word got out to business owners and developers and now look what’s going on here,” Brawner said. “Those kinds of things bring in the revenue so we can keep our tax base low for both our residents and businesses so that there’s a good business environment and a good quality family atmosphere in the city.”

Ron Hoover RV & Marine Just Got Bigger

Katy Magazine

Katy, TX (march 8, 2016) Ron Hoover RV & Marine Centers, Houston’s #1 Google-rated dealership, will celebrate the Grand Opening of its new 100,000 square-foot dealership, located at 29029 Katy Freeway in Katy, Texas (just west of Katy Mills Mall), April 28 through April 30, 2016. This special 3-day event will include lots of door prizes, free hamburgers and hot dogs from 11am to 2pm, and a Grand Prize that will be your choice of a Sabre 365MB 5th Wheel or a Blue Wave 2200 Pure Bay boat.

Ron has included two gourmet coffee bars, a play area for the kids with videos and games, and a pet area for the four-footed members of your family. And, when our customers bring their units in for service, there are 19 service bays, ensuring the quality service and fast turnaround time that Ron Hoover is famous for. Add to that the RVIA-Certified Service Technicians, Factory-Certified Marine Technicians and an entire staff of Service and Sales support personnel, and it’s no wonder that Ron Hoover RV & Marine Centers is Texas’ largest RV and boat dealership.

During this fun-filled 3-day event, we will be joined by Manufacturers Reps for those with questions, Bank Reps for those looking for financing, and the Hoover family will be there as well to meet you and welcome your family to our newest location. Food, fun, friends and a first visit to our new comfortable “home” where every day, in every way, we care about making your time with family a time to remember!

March 08th 2016 Posted to Business News,Katy News |

Lori Fink-Award of Certified Service Writer

Pictured left to right are Larry Ramirez, Service Manager, Lori Fink, Recipient, and Blake Anthony, General Manager.

Lori Fink of Ron Hoover RV & Marine of Rockport was recently recognized for her receipt of the status of “Certified Service Writer”. This certification is highly esteemed in the RV Industry and is sanctioned by RVIA (Recreational Vehicle Industry Association) and RVDA (Recreational Vehicle Dealers Association). The program consists of a completion of many study modules. Proficiency tests  have to be passed in order to achieve this level of professional credentials. Lori has been employed with Ron Hoover RV & Marine for 9 years. This achievement program is available through the Human Resources Office of Ron Hoover RV & Marine located in the Rockport corporate office.

AJ Pettis, Ron Hoover RV & Marine Service Writer

AJ came to work for Ron Hoover RV & Marine of Houston in July of 2010. When he first applied he wasn’t hired because we didn’t have a position open for him.  AJ made several phone calls and visited the dealership more than once and we were finally able to find a spot for him. His persistence paid off, and although we didn’t realize it at the time, it paid off for us too. His career began as a lot porter, and with a lot of hard work, he was soon promoted to lead porter. AJ was eager to learn different areas of the dealership and whenever the parts department needed help with inventory or a reset AJ was always the first to volunteer.  It wasn’t long before we were able to promote him from his porter position to the parts department. AJ has always gone above and beyond what he was asked to do as a porter, where he started, and later as he continued working in the parts department. Many of our people at Ron Hoover are cross-trained between the parts and service departments and it wasn’t long, after perfecting his role in the parts department, that AJ made the move to service writer. AJ continues to exceed our expectations and he has become one of our best service writers. He recently became our newest RVDA (Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association) certified service writer. His customers and co-workers really enjoy working with him and it has been a great experience for me to watch AJ grow within the organization. He continues to excel at the positions he has been placed in turning an entry level job into an exciting and challenging career. It’s no surprise that AJ has been recognized by his peers as the “Employee of the Year” 4 out of the last 5 years. In his free time AJ loves to take his wife and 2 daughters fishing. He also has a passion for producing music in his home studio.

Congratulations to AJ on completing the RVDA certification for service writers and thank you for your continued hard work and commitment to the Ron Hoover team.

Tony Clark

Vice-President of Service

Ron Hoover RV & Marine

Fifth annual RV show comes to Coastal Bend Feb. 12-14

Rockport Pilot

Posted: Wednesday, February 3, 2016 11:29 am

 The fifth annual Coastal Bend Boat & RV Expo, the largest indoor show in the Coastal Bend will be held Feb. 12-14 at the Richard M. Borchard Regional Fairgrounds in Robstown from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. Sunday.

Admission is $10 for adults and $5 for children ages 6-12. Children ages five and younger will be admitted free of charge.

In the fairgrounds, more than 150,000 square feet will showcase the latest variety of new bay, offshore and pontoon boats, as well as gas and diesel motor homes, travel trailers, fifth wheels, toy haulers and more. Last year featured a record-setting attendance throughout the three days and totaled more than 6,000 people.

The Expo offers a rare indoor environment where event-goers can see, touch and compare – all in one place. In addition, many manufacturers and dealers will be ready to make a “sweetheart of a deal” with pre-season low financing, expo specials and rebates.

The 2016 Expo will feature hundreds of bay and offshore powerboats, luxury cruisers, fishing boats and personal watercraft.

The three-day show also features a great selection of gas and diesel motor homes, travel trailers, campers, fifth wheels, travel trailers and accessories for outdoor adventurers.

If visitors already own a boat or RV, the Expo is the place to outfit a boat or ride with a new sound system, GPS system, fishing or wakeboard tower. One may also gear up with the hottest new kayaks, wakeboards, tubes and towing equipment.

RV travel and ownership continue to grow in popularity – including in Texas – with 7.2 million RVs on the nation’s roads. The local boating segment is seeing similar upticks as 22 percent of Texas households participate in recreational boating annually. With more than 600,000 registered boats, the Lone Star state ranks sixth in boating activity in the country.

Tiffanie Hoover, director of the annual Coastal Bend RV & Boat Expo, said, “Today’s record RV ownership levels reflect the enduring appeal of the recreational lifestyle despite recent economic challenges. The biggest difference is younger families are making RVing a priority in their lives because they realize it is a cost-effective and fun way to spend time with family and friends.”

She added, “And Texas has more square miles of inland water than any other state. So, it makes perfect sense families want to spend quality time together having fun in and on the water.”

Free educational seminars hosted by marine, RV and outdoor adventure industry experts will be held throughout the weekend at the Expo. Topics include satellite selection and towing solutions for your RV, as well as saltwater fishing for sharks, boating inspection, new Evinrude motors, and hunting and fishing laws and safety.

Couple travels/works in all 50 states in Winnebago

Couple travels/works in all 50 states in Winnebago

FOREST CITY, Iowa — Heath and Alyssa Padgett didn’t settle for a traditional honeymoon. Instead, the newlyweds from Austin, Texas, hopped in an RV from Winnebago and traveled to all 50 states while they filmed a full-length documentary.

The film chronicling their journey is called “Hourly America” and features Heath working at a different hourly job in every state. Given the costs associated with such extensive traveling, the Padgetts discovered using an RV was an efficient way to stay on budget throughout the journey.

“We kind of fell into it,” Padgett said of RVing. “We graduated college and had office jobs, but really wanted to travel and see the country.”

The Padgetts’ RV shuttled them to destinations throughout the continental U.S. for their documentary giving them a glimpse at the many possibilities this nation provides.

“There is so much opportunity in our country,” Heath said of what he learned from filming the documentary. “You always think of being a lawyer, teacher or accountant, but what I learned on our tour across the country is that there are so many jobs available you would have never considered before.”

The Padgetts plan on releasing their feature-length documentary this spring, but despite crossing all 50 states off their list, one thing has remained the same – they still live full-time in an RV.

“Our biggest goal at this point in our lives is creating a lifestyle that allows us to travel and continue to do work we love- writing and film making,” Heath said. “After we hit the road, it became pretty clear the whole RV thing was pretty cool. While we worked to complete our 50 state-cross-country adventure, we met tons of other travelers and creative professionals who had found different ways to earn an income while traveling.”

In 2015, the Padgetts further committed to the lifestyle by purchasing a new Winnebago Brave motorhome. It has a retro-styled design and fits with the personalities of the Padgetts. They have written guest blogs for different companies in the RV industry including Winnebago Industries, DoItYourselfRV, RVShare and Good Sam.

“We wanted an RV with more space for work,” Heath said. “The Winnebago Brave does that by offering two slideouts and large areas to edit footage.”

The Padgetts have even dubbed the Winnebago “Merica the Brave” in homage to their trip across the United States and are looking forward to making many more memories while sharing some of them as contributors for the RV lifestyle-blog website http://winnebagolife.com, a release from Winnebago stated.

“If you would’ve told me that at 25 years old I’d be living fulltime in an RV… I might of thought you were crazy,” Heath wrote on his blog. “But living in an RV has been the biggest adventure of our lives to date.”

SOURCE: Winnebago Industries press release

gI_59840_laughing padgetts brave

Murt’s Desserts brings cupcake camper to area

First Posted: 12:58 pm – January 6th, 2016 Updated: 1:23 pm – January 6th, 2016.

By Melanie Mizenko – mmizenko@timesleader.com


Brandon Murtha, 16, of Nanticoke, shows off the Murt’s Dessert’s cupcake camper.
Pete G. Wilcox | Times Leader

Vanilla and red velvet cupcakes made by 16-year-old Brandon Murtha, of Nanticoke.
Pete G. Wilcox | Times Leader

An ‘I Love Cupcakes’ bumper sticker sticks to the mini refrigerator inside Brandon Murtha’s cupcake camper – Murt’s Desserts.
Pete G. Wilcox | Times Leader

Brandon Murtha, 16, of Nanticoke, in the Murt’s Desserts cupcake camper.
Pete G. Wilcox | Times Leader
NANTICOKE — A bright pink and blue trailer in the driveway is a sure sign you’re at the right place for cupcakes and other desserts.

The visually pleasing camper belongs to 16-year-old Brandon Murtha, a 10th grader at Greater Nanticoke Area High School. Brandon runs Murt’s Desserts and takes the camper on the road to area craft fairs and vendor shows, selling cupcakes and other sweet treats. He has been asked to do a few Sweet 16 parties, birthdays and other personal events.

“I always wanted to have some kind of business,” Brandon said. He admits he wanted an ice cream truck but, after deliberation with his family, decided the cupcake camper was a better idea. Having never taken a baking class, he watches Youtube tutorials and takes inspiration from The Cake Boss, Buddy Valestro.

In 2014, Brandon’s parents bought the camper from a family in the Poconos. The camper had to be completely remodeled from removing the bunk beds to adding a large window to sell from, as well as replacing the tires. In July 2015, Brandon completed and passed his opening food inspection.

Since baking in the camper is not a possibility, the Murtha house at 1664 S. Hanover St. has become a home bakery. In doing so, Brandon’s parents had to have the home rezoned by the city of Nanticoke. To pass inspection, it is required that dessert ingredients are separated from regular, everyday baking items. There is a separate cabinet inside the Murtha home and the refrigerator has a separate shelf specifically for cakes, cookies and desserts.

“It’s a lot,” Debbie Murtha, Brandon’s mother, said.

There are times Brandon bakes for hours, wakes up early and goes to bed long after the family has turned in for the night. He takes roughly 10 dozen cupcakes to events, and even then, there are times when he sells out of cupcakes before the end of the event.

The times required from order to table is about a week.

Brandon takes requests for different flavors and cake ideas and tries to accommodate. The most unique flavor request has been watermelon and the most requested is the chocolate peanut butter.

“I have a basic vanilla recipe and add to it,” Brandon said.

He has an upcoming order of chocolate cake, strawberry filling and cream cheese icing. He recently had a challenge when someone requested a Minion cake which he made as six small cakes layered and iced with butter cream.

“That cake was hard,” Brandon confessed.

He also accommodates when an allergy is made known.

Hard work and dedication pay off as Murt’s Dessert’s has a five star rating on its Facebook page. Brandon hopes to one day “stay in Nanticoke” by opening a store in the downtown area. The camper, he said, will stay.

To order, contact Brandon through Murt’s Desserts Facebook page or by calling 570-735-3406.

Reach Melanie Mizenko at 570-991-6116 or on Twitter @TL_MMizenko

With well over 55,226 volunteer hours and 27 years invested in the Grand Canyon Sjors Horstman is dedicated to the Canyon

Grand Canyon News | Grand Canyon, Arizona      11/17/2015

Sjors has lived and volunteered at Phantom Ranch for over 27 years. Some of his duties include caring for vegetation and trees along Bright Angel Creek. Loretta Yerian/WGCN

Sjors has lived and volunteered at Phantom Ranch for over 27 years. Some of his duties include caring for vegetation and trees along Bright Angel Creek. Loretta Yerian/WGCN

Sjors helps a volunteer from the Grand Canyon Hiking and Backpacking Association place wire cages around trees. Photo/India Hesse

Sjors helps a volunteer from the Grand Canyon Hiking and Backpacking Association place wire cages around trees. Photo/India Hesse

Loretta Yerian

GRAND CANYON, Ariz. – To be legendary is to be remarkable enough to be famous or very well known. Grand Canyon has a habit of turning people into legends – like Sjors Horstman.

Originally from an emigrant family from the Netherlands, Sjors has spent the last 27 years at the bottom of the Grand Canyon, volunteering at Phantom Ranch.

The name Sjors derives from the Netherlands. Horstman is his last name, although he prefers to just go by Sjors.

“Sjors is a Dutch name,” he said. “I don’t tell people too often (my last name). It’s spelled with one n, two n’s make it German.”

Sjors’ family emigrated from the Netherlands to the U.S. when Sjors was four. He grew up in California with a family that loved to camp. They appreciated the opportunities the national parks offered and from an early age Sjors learned to enjoy the outdoors.

“We came to the United States and got an eight cylinder car and camped every weekend for the first 10 years we were in the United States,” he said. “Every summer we would go and hit the national parks in the western United States and Canada.”

Sjors has been to many of the major national parks and after he grew up, he continued to travel. In 1981 he drove 25,000 miles around North America visiting national parks along the way.

For a living, Sjors worked as a TV technician at a small company in L.A. His job took him from house to house making repairs to TV sets. As time passed, Sjors began to yearn for something different.

“I felt like I was on an assembly line,” he said. “I would fix five to eight TV’s a day. So that’s when I started doing more traveling on my own, going overseas.”

Sjors visited Europe and Africa before booking a one-year trip around the Pacific. His ticket on Singapore Airlines and New Zealand Airlines cost $1,700.

“It was cheaper to travel than to live in the United States,” he said. “So that’s what I did.”

Little did he realize he was about to embark on a journey that would forever alter his life.

After visiting Asia, Australia, New Zealand and spending six weeks hiking in Nepal, Sjors landed in Hawaii.

“That is where the big thing happened in my life,” Sjors said. “I saw a volcano erupt on a backpacking trip. That was the encore of the whole trip and the realization came to me … there is no way I can go back to L.A. and start fixing people’s TV’s so they can watch soap operas.”

With that realization, Sjors returned to L.A. where he picked up his car and took off on a six-month trip to Alaska. He returned to L.A. after the trip to work as a driver, delivering airplane parts. In his spare time he would head to the beach to watch for whales – something he had done since he was a teenager.

He began volunteering to watch and collect data on whales – getting his first taste of volunteer work.

He lived in his truck, spending most nights above the beaches and homes in Palo Verde, California.

“I had a big view and all these rich homes behind me,” he said. “They would call the cops, but eventually the cops got to know me…’that’s the guy that’s always watching whales,’ they’d say.”

One day as he was scanning the horizon for whales, Sjors overheard two strangers sayingGrand Canyon National Park needed volunteers to collect data for a project on the Colorado River. He was interested.

As a child, Sjors family had taken him to the South Rim for his first glimpse of the Canyon.

“I remember looking down and I could see the buildings (Phantom Ranch) and I thought, ‘only an idiot would hike down there,'” Sjors said.

Sjors would spend almost half of his life at the bottom.

His first hike into the Canyon was in the mid 1970s as a young adult. Ever since that trip, he had been fascinated by the idea of taking a river trip on the Colorado. He was excited to discover the volunteers needed for the volunteer project – collecting data on the effects Glen Canyon Dam was having on the river (Glen Canyon Environmental Studies, 1986), would be a part of a boat trip on the Colorado.

“To me it was just a scam to get into the Canyon,” Sjors said.

The scam worked. With prior experience collecting data on whales, Sjors was in. He would spend the next several weeks on the Colorado. Following his initial volunteer trip, he landed a spot as a seasonal volunteer campground host on the North Rim.

When he wasn’t at the North Rim campground, Sjors was hiking the corridor trails. He became a regular around Phantom Ranch.

When famed artist and NPS employee Bruce Akin and his wife, Mary, inquired at Phantom Ranch for a baby sitter, the ranger’s suggested Sjors. The Akin lived at Roaring Springs, five and a half miles below the North Rim. Bruce oversaw the public water supply for the park. The Akin children were home schooled and the parents wanted to go on an anniversary trip and hired Sjors to watch their children.

“I went down there and babysat them for a few weeks,” Sjors said. “Three kids – 10, 12 and 16 years old.”

It was 1988 when Sjors started volunteering at Phantom Ranch. Besides having a few additional buildings and trees, Sjors said Phantom Ranch and Bright Angel Campground have not changed a whole lot in the last 27 years.

“I don’t think there’s been a whole lot of changes,” he said. “That is what’s kind of nice about it, it doesn’t change.”

Today operations and life at Phantom Ranch would not be the same without the time and devotion Sjors has given in his almost three decades there.

As a volunteer, Sjors supports the Phantom Ranch rangers in medical assistance, preventative search and rescues, maintenance, campground host and checking for backcountry permits and gardening.

Over the years Sjors slowly adopted the responsibilities of caring for and tending all vegetation and trees at the campground and along Bright Angel Creek. He developed, installed, and maintained an irrigation system for the trees along with planting and nurturing the majority of the trees at the campground and along the creek. The trees planted in the Canyon help provide shade, privacy and a sanctuary from the Canyon’s harsher environments.

“Even though my intentions at the beginning was to be at Phantom, I had no idea I would be working with plants and working with the staff and helping people out,” Sjors said. “It’s fun because sometimes I run into people in other places and they’ll say, ‘hey you rescued me in the Canyon.'”

Today, Sjors volunteers from March through November, spending 18 days at Phantom Ranch and 10 days on the rim. In November, he spends several months at the ranch – tracking condors and tending to his duties.

He receives a stipend of $15 a day. He learned a long time ago how to make his money go a long way – he still lives off savings from when he was a TV repairman in L.A. .

“You have to sacrifice a lot of things, like girlfriends, going to the movies, going to restaurants – all those things I had to take out,” he said. “Basically I’m not spending much. I don’t own a house, no bills.”

Despite giving up some worldly comforts, Sjors said he wouldn’t change any part of the time he has spent in the Canyon.

“It’s been nice working with all these different people,” he said. “I think one of the big things for me is this family thing with the ranch staff. I’m very close to the ranch staff and rangers. They take care of me.”

Working together for many years and living in such unique living arrangements, has given them a common bond. Sjors considers the ranch employees and rangers family.

In 2013 Grand Canyon National Park Superintendent, Dave Uberuaga, visited the ranch to surprise Sjors and express his appreciation for the (at that time) 55,226 hours of volunteer service.

“I believe Sjors could be the first NPS volunteer to record 50,000 hours,” Uberuaga wrote in the River Ranger Station’s logbook.

Sjors turns 60 in December. He says the last 27 years have been an adventure. One of the best parts has been to watch families return, year after year.

“Being down here I lose track of time,” he said. “It seems like the only thing I have (to mark) time are big events, like big flash floods…and watching people grow up. I see families with their kids and now I see their kids coming down here. Every day when I go through the campground, somebody knows me. So you have a lot of friendships.”

When Sjors is not in the Canyon, he can be found visiting Phantom Ranch employees on the rim, camping in the forest or visiting his mother in Cottonwood.

More information about volunteering with the National Park Service and other government agencies is available at volunteer.gov.