Trailer Trash Potluck Launch Party

For the past two years Brian and I have been developing a website for researching camping locations. A resource with all types of campgrounds, from RV parks to national parks to free dispersed camping on BLM land; with photos, filters and reviews that could be sorted.

Yesterday, from our campsite at American Girl Mine Road, we took down the signup page and officially launched Campendium.

We are really lucky to be camping this week with some incredible friends who’ve freely shared their professional skills with us making this launch really exciting.

Our friend Drea Knufken writes press releases for tech startups. Her magic pen got us some early coverage:

Drea’s husband, our friend and professional photographer Seth K. Hughes took the fantastic photo that appears on the Campendium homepage.

Our friend Todd has been a tremendous help in the social media department. For the past 2 weeks he’s been posting some really great camping locations to Campendium’s Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Google + pages. Hopefully he doesn’t burn out anytime soon!

Tim, Kerri and Russ were some of our earliest users. These guys, along with everyone else who writes reviews, contributes photos and submits blog posts, are what’s most important about this website.

We have a lot of gratitude and want to thank everyone that’s touched this project. From voting on the name 2 years ago (Campendium vs. Campsite Buddy) and shout-outs on social media to building a financial model and advertising, the outpouring of support has been incredible.

Last night, we had a “trailer trash potluck” to celebrate.


Kerri made Frito Pie for the first course which she served in frito bags. (Dad, I think you’d really like this).


Seth & Drea brought over tater tots.


I made a dairy-free tuna casserole and an iceberg salad with vegan thousand island dressing.

I’ve always teased Tim for making instant mashed potatoes, so last night, he seized the opportunity to share some of his potato-y goodness. We were curious about the ingredients, so Todd did a reading.


For dessert, Russ made southern banana pudding with nilla wafers. This time we completely ignored the ingredients and pigged out.

Thanks everyone for an awesome launch day.

“If you are not embarrassed by the first version of your product, you’ve launched too late.” – Reid Hoffman, founder of LinkedIn

2015 Cost of Camping:
1 night paid camping
26 nights free camping
27 days this year
Total spent: $5
Daily average cost: $0.19

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  • Reply Todd B January 28, 2015 at 9:05 am

    Congratulations! Loved launch day and super excited to have been a part of the party. Campendium is amazing!!!


  • Reply Kate January 28, 2015 at 9:28 am

    Fantastic. Well done, Campendium is is an incredible resource.

    Wish we could have been there, we definitely could contribute to bringing the trashiness down a level!!

  • Reply Pam Wright January 28, 2015 at 9:38 am

    Congratulations!! John was browsing around last night and he liked it. Now the big test is when I look around tonight!!!

    Question…wht does one have to login to look at photos?

    Love you trashy dinner!! Back home we call the Frito thing a Walking Taco. They serve them at all the sporting events.

    • Reply Leigh January 28, 2015 at 10:12 am

      Thanks Pam!

      In order to grow Campendium as a business, we need to capture users of the website. I think the photo galleries are a great incentive for people to create accounts. For those who don’t want to create an account, people can still see thumbnail images on the campground detail page.

      “A walking taco” – perfect.

  • Reply Gris January 28, 2015 at 9:56 am

    Congrats and best wishes on your new venture!

  • Reply Steve Austin January 28, 2015 at 10:42 am

    Congrats guys! Campendium is great.

  • Reply Allison January 28, 2015 at 10:53 am

    I am sorry to have missed that dinner. Banana puddin is the best. Congratulations on the launch.

  • Reply Santa Barbara Mary & David January 28, 2015 at 12:19 pm

    Love today’s alt-foodie post–what a riot. Particularly the banana pudding! And of course, congrats on the official launch–how ’bout a Campendium app for us?

    • Reply Santa Barbara Mary & David January 28, 2015 at 12:22 pm

      I meant an iPhone/iPad app.

      • Reply Leigh January 28, 2015 at 12:36 pm

        Hi David, some day we’d love to have an IOS and Android app, meanwhile, the site is responsive so it will work on all the different sized devices.

  • Reply Marcia January 28, 2015 at 1:15 pm

    Congratulations on the launch of Campendium. The flag looks good flying out there in the desert.

    • Reply Leigh January 28, 2015 at 2:51 pm

      Thanks Marcia! It’s amazing how well that flag behaved for the photo.

  • Reply Tiffani January 28, 2015 at 1:22 pm

    Congrats! Thanks for letting us in early to write reviews! Im so proud of you two.

    • Reply Leigh January 28, 2015 at 2:51 pm

      Hey lady! I wish you were with us last night. You’ve been so supportive since the beginning – you were the next user after me! Thank you for your 60 reviews!!

  • Reply Brenda January 28, 2015 at 1:39 pm

    Love this post! The launch party. Todd’s reading of the instant potato ingredients with giggles in the background. Little Curtie in your header photo. The Reid Hoffman quote. Congratulations again, friends. Miss you guys.

  • Reply John & BJ January 28, 2015 at 2:01 pm

    Congrats on the official launch of Compendium. You know I love it! Super resource.

    • Reply Leigh January 28, 2015 at 3:05 pm

      We love all of your awesome contributions! Thanks John & BJ.

  • Reply Randy Bullock January 28, 2015 at 4:07 pm

    Great website, and you will never appreciate how your work contributes to the dreams of others! We are two (less than) years away from beginning our own journey around the drivable Americas in a probably ’15 classic. Thanks to you and your contributing bloggers, we have some great ideas of where to go! Can’t wait to pour you both a glass of wine or beer to say thanks!

    • Reply Leigh January 28, 2015 at 4:59 pm

      Thanks for the kind words Randy, in two years Campendium should be in pretty good shape! Looking forward to seeing you on the road. Keep us posted.

  • Reply Meg January 28, 2015 at 6:32 pm

    Congrats! What a great gift / service! Been browsing, can’t wait to USE it for more than daydreaming!

  • Reply Rob January 28, 2015 at 6:44 pm

    From north of the border (the one on top, not the south one), a big congratulations for all your hard work. The site looks great and is very helpful.

    You are an inspiration for mobile living and starting a unique business. Here is to much more success in the future and a shameless plug for our own adventures

    So nice to meet you virtually and maybe one day we will cross paths. Happy journeys.

  • Reply Amanda January 29, 2015 at 6:17 am

    Congratulations! So happy to see your dream become a reality. I love using Campendium as my go to source for planning and reviews. I check the front page everyday to peruse the new reviews 🙂 Sounds like you had an awesome launch party. Trashy or not, that Banana Pudding looks yummy.

    • Reply Leigh January 29, 2015 at 7:56 am

      Thanks Amanda! I’m thinking we might need to show a few more reviews on the home page. That banana pudding was yummy!

  • Reply ThoseYoungGuys January 29, 2015 at 8:25 am

    A big congratulations to you guys, how exciting. I love Campendium and I am sure everyone who uses it will too. You both have done a terrific job!

  • Reply Rick January 29, 2015 at 9:02 am

    Frito Pie – Tastes great and easy clean up. What more could you ask for?

  • Reply Denise January 29, 2015 at 12:52 pm

    No need to respond Leigh and Brian….Jim and I want to wish you two much success in the years to come. We will be able to say we knew you when. Hope to see you soon and look forward to writing more reviews!

  • Reply Ed @ Chasing Sunrises and Sunsets January 29, 2015 at 1:49 pm

    Let me join your other followers in congratulating you on the launch of Campendium. I can hardly wait to be a campsite “review” contributor.

    As I mentioned in one of your other posts, the solar is completed sufficiently to be undergoing testing, even if only in our driveway. And last weekend, we snagged a Jeep Liberty 4×4 after exhaustive online searching. I guess we’re starting to run out of excuses for getting on the road.

  • Reply Julian February 24, 2015 at 8:58 pm

    Loved the Launch. Signed up and will upload our adventures this summer.

    • Reply Leigh February 25, 2015 at 10:05 am

      Awesome! Looking forward to following along, keep in touch.

  • Reply Ron January 28, 2016 at 11:08 am

    Congratulations and continued success! Can’t wait to go out west this summer and fall and use more of the site’s resources.

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