Owner of the Week: Eddie Tarkany

Outdoorsy Owner Stories

Owner of the Week: Eddie Tarkany

Chelsea Gonzales
by Chelsea Gonzales
Posted August 30, 2021

“For the last 11 years, it has been shipbuilding,” Eddie Tarkany tells us. “Now I do camper rentals full-time with my business, Mobile Bay Camper Rentals.”

Wondering how in the world he got from one career to the other? We were too, so we asked. “It’s kind of a long story,” begins Eddie. “My wife and I used to travel to cities a lot and never really thought about camping. One year, we were visiting my brother in Norfolk and we went to Washington, D.C. It was New Year’s Eve and extremely cold. We went into a Smithsonian museum to warm up and decided to watch an IMAX movie while in there. A movie about the national parks happened to be playing and it really intrigued me, and since then, I have had a desire to travel the country and visit all the national parks.”

This little spark was all it took to start a fire in Eddie, and he jumped in feet-first. “On the way back from D.C., I decided I was going to build a teardrop trailer in our garage, and we were going to set off to Yellowstone that summer,” he recalls. “So over the course of six months, I built us a small teardrop trailer and we set off to do exactly what we planned.”

That first trip was a trip of a lifetime, and one Eddie and his wife will never forget. “My favorite camping experience would have to be that trip out to Yellowstone in 2017,” Tarkany tells us. “We had the best time and really found a new appreciation for the outdoors. I will never forget sitting around our campfire at Madison Campground when an earthquake hit and shook the whole place for a few minutes. I don’t remember the size of it but I do know it was the biggest earthquake to be registered in Yellowstone that year! Totally new experience for a couple of southerners!

“We had the best time exploring many national parks during that first adventure, and when we came home, we decided we wanted to do this more often—BUT we needed a bathroom,” Eddie explains. “So we went and got ourselves a 2017 Forest River Wolf Pup 16BHS. We had no idea when we bought it that we would ever rent it out.”

Soon enough, however, the couple learned about the rental market and decided to dive in. “At first we thought it would be a good idea to make a little extra money to cover the payments,” says Eddie. “Little did we know it would grow into a full-time business! We have netted almost $250K since August 2017. We have also grown to nine campers since deciding to pursue this as a business in 2019.”

Best of all, the Tarkanys have found a love of camping and are now able to share that with others. “I hope that families can get the same sense of appreciation of the outdoors as I did. I love watching families come back with tons of new memories, and to see the excitement on kids’ faces when they show up.”

All About Eddie

Favorite morning beverage: “Gatorade.”

Favorite campsite meal: “Fresh gulf-caught shrimp wrapped in tinfoil over the campfire.”

Music you like to play on the radio: “Country or alternative.”

Best game to play on the road or at your campsite: “We have a 3-year-old so we play ‘I spy’ a lot.”

Favorite season: “Fall.”

Last photo you took: “A camper setup!”

If you could travel anywhere in an RV, where would you go? “Alaska!”

Chelsea Gonzales


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