Lady campers do it “vintage style” with no men allowed

Pam Fisher of Moline can’t imagine life without her 1959 Airstream.

“It’s awesome, a little slice of heaven”, Fisher said. On Wednesday, she waited in the Jumer’s Casino parking lot in Rock Island for like-minded ladies to arrive in their vintage campers to head west for a weekend road-trip.

They are part of an organization called “Sisters on the Fly”.

“There are three rules. No men, no children, no pets, this is our time”, said Fisher.

Formed in 1999 by two sisters who wanted to pass along their love of fly-fishing, the group has blossomed into a sort of laid-back outdoor sorority with more than 3,000 members and 30 chapters. Their trips run the gamut from fly fishing out west to :Cowgirl College” to short stints at festivals with fireside chats and dance parties in costumes.

“It’s a sisterhood, yes of crazy women that like to go on adventures and it’s not just about camping. I’ve never fished in five years.”, she laughed.

Many of the women have bought and restored vintage camper trailers, and decorated them in their own unique theme.

“My theme is ‘Life’s a Hoot’, and it’s all done in owls. It’s changed my life. There’s such a wonderful camaraderie. I love to fish and my husband doesn’t like to fish. I love this little trailer, and I said ‘I’m gonna do that'”, said Karen Reichert.

Andrea Ezra is one of the newer “Sisters on the Fly”.

“My husband passed away two years ago. I knew this was going to be my entertainment. I was going to start camping. It’s safe. You sometimes travel alone to a campground but once you get there, you’re not alone”, Ezra said.

Big trips are planned later in the summer, but the individual chapters plan weekend getaways throughout the season.

” They love the outdoors. They like fun, and they do like to drink a little’, Fisher said. “We have bonfires, laugh, and giggle. It’s also empowering. I’ve had girls ask me to back their camper in and I said no, I’m going to show you how”, Fisher said.

“No one has more fun than us, that’s the motto. And to get women out to enjoy the outdoors.”

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