The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

An RV park for Cougs, by Cougs

Father-daughter WSU alumni duo runs Flying B RV Park
Recreational vehicles parked at the Flying B RV Park run by two WSU alumni, Pullman, Wash.

Two Cougars are behind Pullman’s Flying B RV Park, the local home of about 30 parked recreational vehicles and dozens of people on football game weekends.

WSU alum Steve Tomson owns and operates the Flying B RV Park with his daughter, Erin Tomson, a WSU strategic communication professor and another alum.

“It’s kind of our father-daughter project,” Steve said.

Eight miles from WSU’s Pullman campus is the Tomsons’ working horse farm and a field that grows hay for their horses. After being harvested in late June or early July, the hay just sits, Steve and Erin said.

Though the Tomsons run the horse farm and RV park together, Erin said the RV park started off as her dad’s idea and evolved into something they did together.

“In 2019, he had retired from a career in law enforcement and that just happened to be the same year Walmart decided not to allow RV parking,” Erin said. 

On top of Walmart deciding not to allow RV parking on game days, the parking WSU runs on campus changed.

“It became considerably more expensive — to the point that for some people, they were basically priced out. So that was kind of driving a need,” Steve Tomson said.

Steve and Erin said they desire to support fellow Cougs and provide a space to park for games that is mellower than the parking in town, more family-friendly and reasonably priced.

“We’re trying to accommodate other Cougars, primarily. We’re alums, my wife and I are alums, Erin’s an alum,” Steve said. “I wanna see people be able to come here and see parents of students be able to come and see their kids and not be priced out.”

Prices for hotels and parking spaces can become extremely expensive on football weekends, and they wanted to make games more accessible, Steve said.

Erin has ridden horses competitively her whole life and is extremely accomplished, and the income helps support the horse farm operation, she said.

“We use the money that comes in from the RV park for competitions and training,” Erin said.

On top of providing space to park and dry-camp, the Tomsons drive vans to shuttle fans to and from the games, which is particularly important for Steve.

“So if they wanted to party a little bit before the game, they could get in safely and get out safely,” Steve said. “I did about 42 years in law enforcement so that was a factor. I’ll do it but I don’t want people driving drunk.”

Erin said she enjoys driving the shuttles because it gives her a chance to meet people and find out where they are from, whether they graduated from WSU and when they were in school.

The Flying B RV Park opened in 2019, closed in 2020 because of COVID-19 and has run every year since. The park has been successful, and the Tomsons have fun doing it, they said.

“We could probably keep doing this as long as we wanted,” Steve said.

The future of the Flying B RV Park has become less clear with the changes to WSU football caused by other universities leaving the Pac-12 conference. Even still, the Tomsons remain optimistic. 

“I think people are still gonna wanna come to Pullman and camp and support the Cougars.” Steve said.

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