RV PRO

August '21

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30 • RV PRO • August 2021 rv-pro.com I n the picturesque Annapolis Valley of Nova Scotia, Canada, where winters can linger into spring and even hurricanes can leave their mark, there's an RV dealership that has learned to adapt to what nature throws its way. Jerry's RV, based in the village of New Minas near the world-re- nowned Bay of Fundy, is notable in that 20 percent of its annual gross revenue is from the lawn and garden side of its business, which includes generators and snowblowers. "We typically carry approximately $250,000 to $300,000 worth of lawn and garden equipment in our showroom, which is con- stantly turning over each season," says Chardell Brydon, business manager and head of sales at Jerry's RV. The business was incor- porated in 1987 by Chardell's father, Gerald (Jerry) Weir when he bought out a small RV dealer. "This side of the business – although it does round out revenue stream to be more 'year-round' – is very weather driven. We get exceptionally busy right after a hurricane or tropical storm with generators. Snowblower sales and repairs get crazy if we get a winter with a lot of snow. Spring is always busy with mowers and trimmers, while fall is leaf blowers and chainsaws," says Brydon, adding that the business retails brands including Husqvarna, Echo, Generac and Ego. "Our RV season here is short. You have a few months at 'hard- at-it' camping – and longer if you can survive the bugs and black- flies," Brydon chuckles. In 1990, Chardell's husband, Scott Brydon, joined the com- pany and brought along his lawncare experience to help Weir expand the seasonal business. Jerry's RV also specializes in small equipment repairs. "Scott wanted to do more, so Dad started to train him on RV repair; Scott is very capable and self-taught," says Chardell Brydon. Business is a Family Affair Jerry's RV has long been a family-run business. Chardell Brydon recalls how she came to work for her father, who dabbled in repairs of mobile homes and travel trailers. "I just couldn't say 'no,'" she says. "Dad convinced me to leave a job I was in after a work experience term with Acadia University and to come work for him. My first days were in August of 1987. I knew little about the RV industry but listened and learned. "Dad always gave me good direction. I was strong in math, so he encouraged my accounting. I did mainly his books and I would listen as he helped customers, but there was not a lot of action. For a while it was just me and Dad, and he would do all Selling RVs… and Snowblowers With a limited summer season, Jerry's RV in Nova Scotia, Canada, relies on a hybrid business that includes retailing lawn and garden equipment, plus snowblowers, to stay busy year-round. By Marney Carmichael RV D E A L E R S Members of the dealership team pose for a group photo. The business employs 15 people, which includes both its dealership and its lawn and garden operation.

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