With the price of gas these days, heading across the country for a long RV trip can be a budget buster.
This year, we chose to stay within one tank’s distance from home, keeping the cost of gas at a reasonable level.
As a special treat, a couple times a year we make the Grand Casino in Hinckley, Minnesota our destination. About 75 miles away, it’s well within the one tank goal of our modest RV trips.
The Grand Casino caters to all types of travelers. Besides the luxury accommodations of their motel, they also have small individual chalets that can be rented on a nightly basis. Compete with decks and barbecues, it’s like walking down a small residential street with all the houses lined up in a row.
We headed to the Grand Casino’s RV Resort for the Memorial Day weekend. It’s a very popular place.
Our RV Casino Trip
Leaving Duluth, we headed down Highway 23.
In no hurry, driving through the countryside at 55 mph is just about right. Plus, it stretches the gas a bit further. Whenever possible, we avoid the freeway. The less-traveled roads have much better scenery to enjoy. This also gives us a chance to pull off at every attraction that appeals to us along the way.
Highway 23 is a 2-lane blacktop road headed south out of Fond du Lac, the last community on the far west edge of Duluth. Known as Veteran’s Memorial Highway, it seemed appropriate for this weekend. We stopped at the scenic wayside rest area to check out the view down into the valley. The summer leaves are just now coming out, creating a soft multi-tone hue of green over the landscape.
As we passed through the town of Sand Stone, we stopped at a local flea market. Not a single flea in sight, though Mary wanted to adopt a 6-week-old kitten. It was one of a few that were offered for free to good homes. We passed and continued on toward Hinckley.
Boondocking In Grand Casinos Parking Lots
We arrived at the Grand Casino in the early afternoon and looked for a good place to park our RV.
By waiting until a week ago to call in reservations, we were only able to get a spot at the RV resort for Sunday night. This wasn’t a problem for us, since we planned to boondock in the casino’s parking lot for Saturday night, and then move into the RV resort on Sunday when our check-in time arrived.
Like most casinos across the country, RV camping in the parking lot is an accepted practice. We were hardly alone; at least 15 other RVs had the same idea.
The whole point of arriving on Saturday was to eat the prime rib buffet. The Grand Buffet is top notch any night of the week, the prime rib just makes it something special to look forward to. After eating way too much good food, we kicked back for the evening.
RV Camping At Grand Casino’s RV Resort
On Sunday, we checked into the RV resort mid-morning and the staff fixed us right up. The fact that we were many hours early for our proper check-in time didn’t make any difference to them. They were as polite as ever. We got our assigned spot. Within minutes, we had the electricity, cable TV, and wireless Internet up and running. Now you know why we like it here — they have everything to make your weekend escape enjoyable!
With close to 400 spaces, able to fit most any RV, the Grand Casino’s RV Resort is a very popular place to visit. On holiday weekends, you better make your reservation a month ahead or you’ll be out in the parking lot like we were. It’s not at all like a woodlands retreat, but sometimes luxury RV camping can be just as much fun.
Oh, and don’t forget when it’s time to gamble or head for the buffet, just flip up the little flag on the yard light for your campsite. The Grand Casino’s shuttle bus will pick you up at your door and bring you back when you’re ready!
On Monday morning, we started for home. For breakfast it was a stop at Tobie’s for one of their huge pecan caramel rolls. It’s a tradition that’s been around as long as I have. You can’t drive from Minneapolis to Duluth without a stop at Tobie’s! Their baked goods are world famous and the rest of their menu is real good too.
Once we arrived back home, the RV trailer was emptied and put away well before noon. We had a great trip, enjoyed some really good food, and had a chance to leave our day-to-day life behind for awhile. It was a successful holiday weekend that didn’t break the bank!
More About RV Casino Parking & Resorts
I’ve been involved in RVing for over 50 years — including camping, building, repairing, and even selling RVs and motorhomes. I’ve owned, used, and repaired almost every class and style of RV ever made. I do all of my own repair work. My other interests include cooking, living with an aging dog, and dealing with diabetic issues. If you can combine a grease monkey with a computer geek, throw in a touch of information nut and organization freak, combined with a little bit of storyteller… you’ve got a good idea of who I am. To date, I've shared my RV knowledge in over 300 articles here at The Fun Times Guide!