Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Interested in Solar Energy? Mark 10/3 on your Calendar

The national American Solar Energy Society (ASES) is holding their annual solar tour on the first Saturday in October. On this day, homeowners and businesses with solar energy systems will open their doors allowing the general public to come in and take an up-close look at how these systems power their home, heat their water, and climate-control their buildings. It's a great chance to ask questions and hear first-hand from a homeowner how their systems have worked for them. If you already have plans that day, you can always learn about solar online.

The solar tours are often coordinated by local chapters of ASES, such as the IL Solar Energy Association. Here in Oak Park, there are several homes participating on the tour. I'll actually be volunteering for the day at my friend Jim's house, who has helped us out a lot here at HH. His home is a "super site" on the tour where you also can learn about worm composting, and his Jetta converted to run on waste veggie oil (a grease car), among other things. Jim is also an energy auditor and instructor for the ISEA and Wilbur Wright College, so you're bound to learn something if you show up! There's no cost, and the tour will be going on from 10 am - 3 pm.

I was proud to see the OP well-represented with four houses on the solar tour. While you're out, visitors to the area interested in historic preservation as well as green energy can also check out the Pleasant Home bungalow tour, where you can view the variety, craftsmanship and interior design of the best examples of bungalow architectural style, also on Oct 3. It should be a fun day!