In an effort to showcase the importance of renewable energy in Michigan, 13 homeowners across Chelsea will be conducting open houses as a part of the Chelsea Solar Tour on Oct. 6.
The tour is a free event to demonstrate how home and business owners use solar, wind, geothermal heat pumps, passive solar design, and energy efficiency to save money while reducing their dependence on fossil fuels.
The home owners displaying their solar installations to the public will be available between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. to discuss their projects.
"Participants can register at the Chelsea District Library, pick up a map, and visit the 13 sites at their leisure," Cary Church, co-founder of Transition Town Chelsea said.
Church said most of the buildings are located in the City of Chelsea, however one location, a solar-powered rest stop on I-94 east near mile marker 161, requires participants to drive to.
"It's the only solar-powered rest stop in southeast Michigan," Church said.
Church said most of the sites use solar panels, and one includes a geothermal heating and cooling system.
Participants who register for the free tour will receive a discount from Jet's Pizza and can enter to win $2,500 through the American Solar Energy Society website.
"There's a lot of really neat homes using renewable energy in Chelsea; I think people will enjoy the tour," Church said.
The tour is part of a nation-wide solar tour organized through the American Solar Energy Society. For more information, visit http://ases.org/solar-tour/
A complete list of homes on the tour is available at the Chelsea District Library, 221 South Main St.