Owners Bruce and Bridgette Manakas
Fun, the one and only singular word to describe the Golden Eagle RV Park & Store…Fun! Smiles are NOT in short supply at this place! When Bruce and Bridgette Manakas decided to leave corporate America, their one goal was to enjoy life. Plus, they wanted to enable others to enjoy life with them. They looked for a business venture to facilitate good times. After spending the evening with them and being treated to an awesome Cajun Fish Fry, attended by no less than eighty people, I believe they have accomplished their mission!
Open year round, the Golden Eagle RV Park & Store, located directly across the highway from Eagle Nest Lake in Eagle Nest, NM, provides sixty-five RV sites, two cabin facilities, four shop models on site (for sale), a Laundromat, club house, Wi-Fi, and a chuck wagon back porch patio. Included in your stay at the Golden Eagle are a plethora of daily activities to choose from. Cards, craft classes, area tours, pot lucks, movie night complete with popcorn, washer toss, 4-wheel drive tours, special dinners (like the Cajun fish fry I attended), live music every Friday night and much more. Plus, for the past six years, every Friday in the summer season, they have a Farmer’s Market on their front parking lot. Venders can purchase space. All of the proceeds from the vender fees go to charity. This year it benefits the AquaPonic program at Eagle Nest Elementary School.
Situated on two tier levels, each RV site has its own breathtaking view of Eagle Nest Lake and the mountains beyond. It is definitely a place of social activity as well as a serene sanctuary to rest and rejuvenate. I spoke with several of the people at last week’s event. I wanted to know why they chose the Golden Eagle. Davis and Phyllis Hardy from Texas have spent their summers at the Golden Eagle since 1998. They said Bruce and Bridgette have raised the bar to excellent at their home away from home. They said the Manakas are honest, trustworthy and family oriented. “They love my dog, too,'” said Bonnie Borth, “and they bend over backwards to make us feel welcome.” She and husband Keith, from Boise City, Oklahoma, have been coming to spend their summers for more than three years. Jim Hayes, from Harrah, Oklahoma, said the scenery and the weather also draw him to the Golden Eagle. He has been coming for 25 years. All of the people I spoke with commented about the feel of family. They look forward to seeing old friends and making new friends. They applauded Bruce and Bridgette for being very personable with their emphasis on fun!
So fun is the name of the game, but so is quality. The country store on premise has a little bit of everything. Personal and camping supplies, food, drinks, and gifts. (And very clean bathroom facilities.) Before purchasing the Golden Eagle, the Manakas retired from their jobs in California to travel. Bridgette had worked with the National Alzheimer’s Association and went on to set up restaurants for major companies. Bruce majored in recreation and spent his corporate years in advertising. They traveled for five years, buying and selling Native American jewelry, as they looked for relocation opportunities. Along the way they made great contacts and good friends. The jewelry and Indian arts found in their country store represent close to fifty nations. The quality is as high-grade as the jewelry found in Santa Fe or Taos. You must go see for yourself!
I asked Bruce how they decided the Moreno Valley was to become their home. He said, “I had a gut feeling. And if you can tell, my gut,” as he patted his stomach, “is a good indicator!” I had to laugh. He also said that the RV.er’s philosophy is upbeat and positive. This fits his ideas.
What I learned…. the Golden Eagle RV Park & Store is a full service RV Resort providing good times and most everything the campers need to make their stay one of a kind. They offer daily, weekly, and monthly rates. For a list of rates and the calendar of events, visit them at www.goldeneaglerv.com. The public is invited to attend the special dinners and Friday night live music on the back patio. I have already saved the date, July 23, 5:00-7:00 for the Cajun Shrimp Boil. Hopefully you’ll join me!