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Greenest County Fair on Earth Boasts Solar Powered Carousel
Posted By Mike Chino On July 8, 2009 @ 4:30 pm In Environment,Events,News,Renewable Energy,San Francisco | 4 Comments
Few events capture the sun-soaked glory of summer better than a county fair, and when the whirling lights and sounds are powered by clean green energy, what’s not to love? Sponsored in part by PG&E , this year’s Marin County Fair  was host to a dazzling array of green innovations ranging from an amazing solar-powered carousel  to an all-electric auto show  to a sound stage juiced by the sun’s rays . On a recent blue sky summer day I took a trip across the golden gate bridge to check out the “Greenest County Fair On Earth” – read on for the full report!
Upon entering the Marin County Fair  I was immediately greeted with a flourish of green gestures. Ringing the entryway, a water-efficient edible garden  sprouted stalks of ruby red chard, while twin towering solar panels crowned with wind turbines rose up from the fairway. These solar panels were scattered all throughout the fair, providing power to exhibits and supplementing the massive photovoltaic array that provides 40% of the fairgrounds’ annual power usage. A ride aboard the ferris wheel  afforded a stellar birds-eye view  of the grounds, where I caught a glimpse of the fair’s shining solar power source.
One of the highlights of the fair was the Electric Wheels Car Show , which showcased a cutting-edge collection of green vehicles ranging from a Tesla Roadster  to UC Berkeley’s solar powered race car  to several  gorgeous classic cars  updated with all-electric transmissions by Electric Marin Wheels . A portable solar array  provided a steady stream of energy to all of the vehicles on display, ensuring that their entire power cycle was truly zero emissions.
Another main attraction at the Marin County Fair  was a solar-powered carousel. This classic amusement ride has been retrofitted with a stunning LED light display  and features 18 horses and a chariot. Nearby a giant solar array soaked up enough energy to run the carousel well into the night . What better way to impress kids with the power of renewable energy?
PG&E ‘s booth provided a wealth of information on their clean energy initiatives including ClimateSmart , CARE , and their residential rebate  programs. Kiosks in the booth featured a carbon calculator game that encouraged fairgoers to enter in lifestyle choices such as the number of plane flights they took and the amount of miles the drove, and then presented them with a carbon footprint analysis. They also turned me on to California Youth Energy Services , a non-profit that employs youth to provide free “green house calls” (complete with services and products like CFL’s) to ensure that your home is operating at its highest level of efficiency.
As the day wound to a close the sounds of Creedence  filled the air as the fair’s solar stage leapt to life. The rocking sound system and LED stage lighting drew all of its energy from a 6kw solar array, providing the perfect power source for blistering guitar solos. Finally, a fantastic display of fireworks  capped off a spectacular summer day.
+ PG&E 
All photos by Mike Chino 
Article printed from Inhabitat – Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building: http://inhabitat.com
URL to article: http://inhabitat.com/greenest-county-fair-on-earth-boasts-first-solar-powered-carousel/
URLs in this post:
 Image: http://www.inhabitat.com/?p=38056
 PG&E: http://www.pge.com/myhome/saveenergymoney/solarenergy/
 Marin County Fair: http://www.marinfair.org/
 solar-powered carousel: http://www.inhabitat.com/?attachment_id=38067
 all-electric auto show: http://www.inhabitat.com/?attachment_id=38061
 sound stage juiced by the sun’s rays: http://www.inhabitat.com/?attachment_id=38071
 edible garden: http://www.inhabitat.com/?attachment_id=38060
 ferris wheel: http://www.inhabitat.com/2009/07/08/greenest-county-fair-on-earth-boasts-first-solar-powered-carousel/ferris-wheel-night/
 birds-eye view: http://www.inhabitat.com/?attachment_id=38062
 Electric Wheels Car Show: http://www.marinfair.org/car_expo.cfm
 Tesla Roadster: http://www.inhabitat.com/wp-content/plugins/falbum/wp/album.php?album=72157620874108902&page=1&photo=3682252477
 solar powered race car: http://www.inhabitat.com/2009/07/07/solar-bullet-uc-berkeleys-gold-rush-racer/
 several: http://www.inhabitat.com/wp-content/plugins/falbum/wp/album.php?album=72157620874108902&page=1&photo=3683065878
 classic cars: http://www.inhabitat.com/wp-content/plugins/falbum/wp/album.php?album=72157620874108902&page=1&photo=3682252631
 Electric Marin Wheels: http://www.electricmarinwheels.com/EMW/Home.html
 portable solar array: http://www.inhabitat.com/?attachment_id=38076
 LED light display: http://www.inhabitat.com/?attachment_id=38059
 well into the night: http://www.inhabitat.com/wp-content/plugins/falbum/wp/album.php?album=72157620874108902&page=1&photo=3683065076
 ClimateSmart: http://www.joinclimatesmart.com/
 CARE: http://www.pge.com/care/
 residential rebate: http://www.pge.com/rebates/
 California Youth Energy Services: http://www.risingsunenergy.org/cyes.htm
 Creedence: http://www.creedence-revisited.com/
 fireworks: http://www.inhabitat.com/2009/07/03/eco-friendly-fireworks-for-4th-of-july/
 + Marin County Fair Photo Gallery: http://www.inhabitat.com/wp-content/plugins/falbum/wp/album.php?album=72157620874108902
 Mike Chino: http://flickr.com/mikechino
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