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Retail Camping World
Prismatic lighting "sells" camping products

Products that look better sell better. At Camping World stores across the national, prismatic glass HID lighting systems are being installed to increase visibility and to improve color rendition.

Camping World, headquartered in Bowling Green, Kentucky, caters to the camper and motor home traveler. The chain originated 25 years ago, when its founder, David Garvin, began offering camping supplies to accommodate travelers visiting Beach Bend Park, which his family operated in Bowling Green.

Soon, a store was constructed to provide campers with a variety of needed items. From there, the chain grew to 22 stores and two distribution centers. Stores range in size from 16,000 square feet to more than 50,000 square feet, combining retail space with a shop area for camping accessory installation. The chain's annual sales now top $120 million.

To date, Prismalume lighting systems from Holophane Company, Inc., have been installed in five stores in Washington, Illinois, Texas, California, and Colorado (with two stores under construction in Ohio and California.) Some of the locations are being considered for retrofit, with the prismatic system replacing fluorescent systems.

According to Dan Thompson, corporate construction manager, the change to the prismatic system was made to increase vertical footcandles and to provide equal exposure for all products, regardless of where they are shelved. The Prismalumes provide 20 percent uplight, which eliminates the 'cavern' effect that can occur in applications with medium-height ceilings.

"The combination of direct/indirect light provided by the Prismalumes gives an individuality to each product that is unattainable with standard lighting fixtures," Thompson said. "With the overall lighted ambiance provided by the Prismalumes, we are creating a cheerful, comfortable environment for our customers, whose average age is 50 to 55 years."
Camping World stores have from 42 to 50 Prismalume fixtures installed in the retail areas. Spacing is generally 16' x 16', depending on the store's configuration, with mounting heights approximately 16 feet to the bottom of the fixtures. Clear 400W super metal halide lamps are utilized.

In designing the lighting system, Holophane's Computer Aided Lighting Analysis (CALA) software was used to predict the average vertical and horizontal footcandles. One of the benefits of using this program was the capability to determine what the system would deliver in terms of illumination levels. CALA also helped establish fixture placement.

"With the Holophane system, the number of fixtures used went down, compared to the fluorescent system," Thompson said. "The Prismalumes also require less maintenance."

When cleaning is required, a simple wipe of the inner surface of the glass reflector will restore efficiency to near initial output.

Holophane Prismalume luminaires are being installed in all new Camping World stores as they are constructed. Existing stores are being considered for retrofit as budgets or building features allow.


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