New Tourism Amenity Breaks Ground
Thursday August 15, 2019
Bassett, Virginia will be home to our area’s newest asset to accommodate visitors and increase tourism. Lily Pad RV Park and Campground is scheduled to open in 2020.
Local real estate investor, Jesse Cahill, is investing $3M to create the RV park and campground for travelers and visitors who prefer this lodging option that is becoming more and more popular. Cahill estimates that he will employ 12 full-time employees during the first year.
Lily Pad RV Park and Campground will offer pads for recreational vehicles and tent camping as well as amenities to complement a camper’s stay. Built-in phases, the site will eventually offer 191 spaces for RVs and 50 for tents. The RV pads will be a mix of both concrete pads and pull-throughs and will include water, sewer, and electrical hook-ups. Additionally, the park will include a bathhouse, kayak/canoe rentals, walking trails and more. An on-site convenience store will offer camping supplies and basic equipment, as well as a short-order grill. Future plans also include a large meeting space. The majority of the park will be for guests only; a small portion, including the store, will be open to the general public.
The site of Lily Pad is roughly 15-18 acres, with over 60 additional acres surrounding it. Campsites are nestled between the Smith River and a small creek, giving the park access to the water and creating a tranquil atmosphere that is sure to attract visitors.
The popularity of traveling by RV has increased tremendously in the past few years as the outdoor tourism industry has grown. Regionally, there is a shortage of pad-ready sites with utility hook-ups to accommodate those RV enthusiasts. In addition to addressing that need, a new RV park and campground can also spur spending with other tourism-related amenities (restaurants, gas stations, retail shops, etc.). Lily Pad’s proximity to the 220 Bypass, Philpott Lake, Fairystone Park, and Martinsville Speedway will make it a convenient location for hosting guests passing through our area or visiting other tourist attractions in Martinsville and Henry County.
Guests may also be drawn in by the interesting history of the site that will be home to the RV and camping park. According to historical records, the park will sit on a portion of land that is believed to be part of a chain of forts built in the mid 1700s during the French and Indian War. Fort Trial, also known as Hickey’s Fort, was built in this strategic location to protect British settlers during that period. George Washington even visited Fort Trial in 1756. An adjacent field that will be developed later was known as the Great Indian Fields. Over the course of years, artifacts have been found on the land and may still be present. Guests will have the opportunity to explore and dig for relics during their stay.
The first phase (the first 122 RV pads and 40 tent pads) of the project is scheduled to be completed by the spring of 2020. For more information about Lily Pad RV Park and Campground, contact Jesse Cahill at 276-647-7210.
Henry County Parks & Recreation,