2021 Elkhart Extravaganza Canceled
Citing health concerns and safety, Winnebago Industries, Forest River, and Thor Industries have dropped out of the event.
Forest River and Thor jointly added that their top priority is the health and safety of valued industry partners, team members, and the Elkhart community.
“With local and national Covid cases rapidly increasing,” the companies said, “safety mandates would be required to help mitigate risks, distracting from the positive experience industry partners expect.”
Winnebago Industries followed with its own announcement that its primary focus continued to be the health and safety of team members, dealers, and the communities served.
“Given recent developments, Winnebago Industries will not be hosting traditional Deal Open House activities in Elkhart, Indiana in September,” the company said. “We firmly believe this decision, made in consultation with our Winnebago, Grand Design RV and Newmar brand businesses, is the appropriate course of action at this time.”
The RV Supplier Show, scheduled to be hosted at the RV/MH Hall of Fame during concurrent days, will likely also be postponed for the second year in a row.
Elkhart Extravaganza plans were canceled last year, mid-July, because of the pandemic. Plans were on track this year before Covid cases spiked in late summer in Indiana and in other parts of the country.
“After reviewing all of the factors, we determined it was in everyone’s best interest and the safest, most responsible course of action to cancel the Expo this year,” Forest River CEO Pete Liegl said. “The community and dealers always welcome this event, but with Covid rates increasing across the country, we do not want to put our dealers, employees, or the community at any additional risk.”
Canceling the events was the right thing to protect stakeholders’ health, the companies said, while also alleviating production disruption.