Camp Quest was originally started in 1964 by Joe's father, Chuck, as Chuck's Camper Sales. The dealership launched with a unit that Joe described as similar in design to a fiberglass Bigfoot, but for station wagons. On his office wall there were pictures of the Chuck's Camper Sales in the 1960's and 1970's, and the Tote Motel station wagon camper. Admittedly, this was the first time we had ever heard of such a thing.
In 1965, Chuck's Camper Sales took on Way Farer and Tear Drop. Later in the 1960's, they also took on Siesta, Six-Pac, and Vacationeer. Joe described his father at the time as a real go-getter who would go to the RV factories to pick-up and haul his own campers.
Joe started working at the dealership when it opened its doors. In eighth grade he would sweep the floors and help with installations. After leaving for a few years, Joe returned to the dealership in the 1970's and worked as a shop mechanic. In 1977 Chuck retired and Joe took over the business.
A few years later, Joe had built up the business to where he was selling 120 to 150 camper shells a month plus accessories.
Then in 1988 Joe began selling used RVs. He soon brought in the truck camper lines of Bigfoot, Alpenlite, Northstar and Six-Pac. Looking for an additional line, he went to the Pomona RV Show and was introduced to Fleetwood campers. He took on the line until 2002 when Fleetwood stopped making campers.
The business name has changed twice since the days of Chuck’s Camper Sales. First, Travel Equipment Sales from 1977 to 1993. In 1994 the name was then changed to what it is today Camp Quest.
Over the past 55 years the business has went through many changes and weathered many setbacks including but not limited to the oil crisis in 1973, the energy crisis in 1979, and the oil price increase of 1990. The company has weathered the dot-com bust in 2000 and the housing bubble and credit crisis from 2007 to 2009. The following article was written after the dot-com bust right on the door step of the Housing crisis. With the vision to down size from the “RV “ dealership to a more manageable size they were allowed to grow in a much more conservative and successful direction.
Joe and Jennelle Petkovich Camp Quest 12605 San Pablo Ave Richmond CA, 94805