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“Stay Away”

Yogi Bear's Jellystone Park Camp-Resort
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Yogi Bear's Jellystone Park Camp-Resort
Savage, Minnesota
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Stay Away”
Reviewed September 4, 2013

We have stayed at a few Jellystone camps throughout the Midwest and this one is not a good representation of the brand. Let's just say there are all different kinds of sensibilities about what makes for a relaxing and fun weekend. The staff is really nice but sometimes apologetic (yet reservedly) about the location and conditions of the campground, which would have you thinking you were on the set of the film 8 Mile. My family of 2 parents and 3 kids were placed on one of the few available spaces during a hot midsummer night in July, which was located within feet of a sewage intake vent that services a waste water treatment facility on the south side of the campground. It was beyond disgusting. We weren't able to get out of our camper for fear of gagging. It was inhumane. After an appeal to the campground and corporate, we got our money back. But beware, if they are retaining these southerly sites and if you are looking for a fun and Midwestern practical-safe camping experience you will want to avoid Jellystone Portage and head to one of the nearby Indiana State Parks.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
3 Thank David W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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45 reviews from our community

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English first
Saint Louis, Missouri
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed August 17, 2013

We, like many of the other reviewers, are avid RV'rs. We have stayed at several Jellystone parks in the past. This one is different. I am shocked to this day that Jellystone hasn't pulled their name from the park. It is in a scary neighborhood. Its dirty. There are 800 permanent sites, about 50 of those are being taken care of. Most are full of junk /trash. The regulars party all night, and that's allowed. We were scared to stay there. We left after one night.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
Helpful?
2 Thank Nikki S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Portage hotels

Indianapolis
Level Contributor
11 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed August 12, 2013

We planned to tent camp at this Jellystone Park for two nights. Our goal was to enjoy Indiana Dunes for a few days. We came on a Saturday afternoon. I was shocked as to how much this placed looked like a trailer park. Not the goal for tent campers. The camp ground was extremely crowded and loud. It was also very dusty due to the gravel roads that are everywhere. Our site was covered in dog poop and very small. It was hard to find a good spot to put our large tent due to the fact the fire ring was right in the middle. Our "neighbor" blasted gospel music late into the night. We actually decided to leave early and not spend another night because of this. The bathrooms were fairly clean but the showers did not drain well and water frequently covered the floor. It did have a nice playground that the kids enjoyed. We loved Indiana Dunes but will not return to this park.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank hjeick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed July 9, 2013

If you are not a seasonal camper, think twice about staying. The sites are very small. We had much difficulty with our 30 foot travel trailer. The camp footprint is huge with a very long walk to the playground and pool. Not good for our 4 year old. Parking near the playground and pools was never available. The pools were extremely crowded and the beach area advertised was not sandy. The staff was welcoming. Many seasonal sites are very dilapidated. Will not stay again.

  • Stayed July 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Rlentz7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brownsburg, Indiana, United States
Level Contributor
11 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed July 7, 2013

I have only stayed at other Jellystone and it was nice. I was very surprised when my family arrived at this campground. They were many very run down permanent sites and a lot of paces around the park just seemed unkept and dirty. I saw a lot of trash laying on the ground. The restrooms toilets were not functioning part of the time and were out of toilet paper for hours. Also, it seemed as if the park patrol with their red and blue lights seemed to be in action a lot. I do not know why nor do I really want to know. People were very loud well into the night. Also, it was fun trying to shield my cbildren from the other campers foul language, paticularly f bombs. My kids did have fun swimming and the Saturday night fireworks were good. I am surprised there are not higher regulations set for this campground. It was definitely not our thing and my family will not be returning. I travel quite a bit and believe that I leave fair feedback. I dont usually leave bad reviews.

  • Stayed July 2013
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
Helpful?
1 Thank April A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed August 22, 2012

Let me start by saying I have stayed at other Jellystone campgrounds and they were awesome. I was very excited to share this with my family.

Our first impression of the campground was while driving. We actually drove PAST it to get to it and jokingly said to each other,"look that's where we're staying!" We soon came to find out it was no joke, that was it.

After driving through a rough and run down part of town we see the sign for our destination, Jellystone Camp and Resort.The sign was on the left side of the street, which was odd to me, and arriving in the dark was even more confusing. On the way in to the campground, you pass a severely run down mobile home court. We had our doors locked already, but really started to wonder if this was a good idea to be there.

As we pulled through the gate, they had our reservations and we were able to proceed right to our site. We were staying for 5 nights. As we pulled into our site (after a nights rain) we come to realize the area in which to park our trailer was mud. There was a bit of " gravel" at the end, but in order to hook up, that was no use to us. Next to us was a concrete slab, but it had a leaky water hook up, so we didn't ask to move.

Wanting to make the best of this trip, we rented a 4 person bike. The men who work at the rental booth were all very nice. We also rented a golf cart as we would be trick or treating later. We took a tour of the campground. We decided that our children would most definately not be swimming while we were here. It was like a community pool, and we weren't quite sure of the community. There is a very nice " adult only" pool by the ranger station, and I would have let our kids swim there.

The majority of sites appear to be seasonal occupants. Some were very well kept, most weren't . It leads me to wonder if they have standards for this.

Golf carts . Everyone gets around on golf carts. Back and forth , all day, all night , complete with headlights.

Along the entire length of camp on one side is a 2 sets if train tracks . What I found odd, was that during the day you hear the train. At night however you have the value added whistle to accompany the train. We timed it, it was approximately 4 times an hour.

Running the entire length of camp on the other side was I-94. Thankfully our air conditioner or fan could drown this out.

At the base of camp is a water treatment plant. It smells. It is close to the play area and pool and tennis courts. We stayed away.

Wifi. If you can actually call that a benefit of staying here. It was very difficult to sign on most of the time. We had to call several times so they could reset it.

The bathrooms. They had a fresh coat of paint, which was nice, but they were right at that line where I weighed the pros and cons of actually using it. The latches on the doors were broken. I also think there should be a place to put your soap and shampoo , as opposed to on the floor. We all showered with our flip flips on.

It was obvious to us that you need not have a personality if you worked in the guard towers at the base of camp or in the food court.

The ladies at the Ranger station were very nice . We liked them . They were always smiling and helpful.

The mini golf was very nice as well. We also enjoyed the paddle boats.

In closing a quote from my 8 year old daughter ," mom, I was afraid this place wasn't going to be nice. I was right. I don't really want to go to anymore Jellystones." This breaks my heart. As I said before, this was not my experience at any of the other Jellystones I had camped at.

Attached are photos. Some are the mobile home park that you pass, some are of the places surrounding our campsite.

Running the entire length of cam

  • Stayed August 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank TravelingmomMJ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Baxter, Minnesota
Level Contributor
60 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed August 9, 2012

My family has stayed at three other Jellystone Parks and had great experiences. Until our stay in Portage, I would have given a blanket "Yes!" to anyone who asked if Jellystone Parks were well-kept. I thought they were all held to the same high standard.

We arrived in the late afternoon (I'm not certain what time) on July 21. The gate person was courteous and sent us on to the registration building. I went in, checked in and was given our site number on Beaver Boulevard. As we drove to our site, we were completely blown away by the conditions of the campground. The sites were ugly: campers and sheds in disrepair, garbage piled and abandoned vehicles everywhere. There was very little grass; mostly the campsites were dirt (not even gravel). We drove up to our site and I actually felt sick when I looked at it. Immediately to our left was a site with a moldy camper surrounded by tall weeds, four golf carts, garbage everywhere, overturned broken lawn furniture and - the worst - a golf cart lying on its side in the roadway. Completely unacceptable.

We drove back to the registration building and I explained what I had seen. She was not surprised and didn’t even question what I was saying. She didn’t think there were any other sites open. I pressed further and, with some sighing and resignation, she found three other sites we could choose from. We drove to the next site listed (Boo Boo Avenue) and found it to be a little better than the first; the surrounding campers did not appear to be quite as run-down. We were considering this site when the train went by. Everyone sitting outside their campers had to stop talking and wait for the train to go past. I said to my husband, "Well, at least it’s not honking." Then it honked and we knew it would be a long horrible night in a tent if we stayed there.

The second option (Sunflower Road) was also near the tracks.

The third site option, the one we selected, was on Canyon Avenue. While the site was not near the tracks, it was maybe 100 yards from the freeway. We opted for the constant noise rather than the “shock-me-awake” noise of the train and its horn. While we set up our tent on the rock of the driveway – there were no level spots in the “grass” area as the grass was just tufts of overgrown weeds – our daughter collected a plastic grocery bag full of garbage from our site’s previous tenants. Plastic forks, knives and spoons, aluminum foil, water bottles, soda cans, straws and wrappers, a bar of soap and sponge, and cellophane were just some of the items she picked up.

After we were set up, we changed into our suits and headed for the pool. It was closed. While our daughter tried hard not to cry, I was wishing there were another campground option close by. But because wi-fi is only available in the camp buildings, there was no way I could go online to find something else for my family.

While I understand that there are limitations when sites are “sold”, there really should be some standards put in place. We saw broken windows repaired with pillows stuffed in the opening, sites with more than 100 lawn ornaments crammed in their small space, loud golf carts late into the night (many campgrounds only allow the electric version), piles of broken lawn furniture and many, many moldy and run-down campers with tall weeds growing around them. Our primary concern is that we just did not feel safe. The atmosphere was one of a poor neighborhood. This campground, with a large percentage of the 900+ sites run-down, was by far the worst I have ever seen.

We slept awfully that night with the noise and unsafe feeling and all agreed we would have been better off sleeping in the back of our SUV. We left the park before 8am the next morning.

I feel as though the employee who handled our registration was doing the best she could with the circumstances. She just appeared resigned to the situation and her behavior led me to believe she was not a novice to this situation. I honestly felt badly for her.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Lisa P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Yogi Bear's Jellystone Park Camp-Resort

Property: Yogi Bear's Jellystone Park Camp-Resort
Address: 5300 Old Porter Rd, Portage, IN 46368-1142
Location: United States > Indiana > Portage
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Specialty Lodging in Portage
Number of rooms: 125

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