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I just had to post this, because I'm actually amazed I got a response this quickly. Framer Dude and I are leaving for a 4 month show tour through MI and New England, and I've been racking my brains trying to think of a way to defray expenses of living on the road.  So, I posted an ad on SW Michigan Craigslist this morning asking if anyone would be interested in bartering handyman work/ cleaning in exchange for a spot to park our RV with water and electric hookup for the weekdays between shows.  Guess what?  Not two hours later, I've gotten a place to stay on a farm 8 miles outside St. Joseph (Krasl show) for the first week of July!  Whew!  Campgrounds get expensive, and I really can't do a weekly or monthly rate because we won't be there on weekends, and we'll be changing locales every week.  The barter system is alive and well, and I've gotten a load off my mind!

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I LOVE the barter system!   Glad that its worked to your advantage - I hope you get lots of others to fill in the gaps!
That's a fabulous idea!  If you're a member of Escapees, they publish a list of free places to stay for members.  Passport America also gives 50% off at many campgrounds, but there are lots of limitations.
I looked into some of the RV clubs-Good Sam, Escapees, Passport America- and there are a lot of restrictions on high season, which won't help me at all.  Any clubs worth joining?
Like I said, Escapees has lists of free places.  It also has a great mail service. It's the best. Good Sam is OK.  It has good road service.  We dropped Passport America.  Good luck with it!
thats great, that was my plan for when i got out of school. however "life" derailed my plans......for now. in a few yrs when my girls are nearly grown i plan to get on with my plan.... finally. good luck an have fun.
Karoline - not sure if you have any Army Corps of Engineers campgrounds where you'll be traveling, we've found a few in this part of the country and for $10 a night you get electrical hook ups during the week, they charge more on weekends, but it's a great place to stay during the week between shows.  We've also found, at least in our part of the country, several city / county parks that are much cheaper, less crowded, etc. than the state parks or other campgrounds.  We've also stayed on the BLM land for free and some of the national forests around here offer free camping as well.
I will certainly check those out.  Going to Maine shortly, we're in CT here with our hosts that I found from Craigslist.  It's working out great except for the electrical issues that are dogging the RV...Thanks for the suggestions!

Caroline,  Glad you found at least one place to stay on your end of summer tour of Michigan.  What kind of things will you be doing in exchange for parking there on the land?  I hope you find a few more places to stay.  I think housing has to be one of the biggest expense traveling artists have to face. 

When you are done with your 4 month tour, would you please do a blog telling us of your experiences?  I bet it would be great reading.

Jacki B

I'm working on the writing.  We are having a blast, meeting people who really love to show off their towns in a way a campground can't!  We've been midnight cherry picking in Michigan,saw  Mohegan Sun in Connecticut, and who knows what next!

Just set up here in Old Saybrook in 99 degree heat, must rehydrate!

Caroline - this might be too late for this trip, but just found a site that might be of interest to you for future trips.  For a $30 membership you can get access to Havest Hosts who have partnered with farms, wineries, etc. to provide free camping for RVers.

Not sure how many sites they have in your part of the country, but looks it might be a possible option for us as we drive up and down I-5 on the West Coast, maps can be found at  The program is set up for 24 hour stays, however depending on the relationship you develop with your Host, for example if you offer to help around the farm or winery, you may be able to stay longer. 

I am going to check it out...if not for this year, then next!  Have you used it yet?


Not yet, just discovered it after our summer road trip and now we're staying within 4 hours of home through the fall /winter, we don't have a long road trip planned until May.  Plan to check it out in 2012.


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