Making A Difference- Death Of A Good Friend

| 8/12/2011 10:54:16 AM

Tags: SEE Expo, events, renewable energy, conservation, Jeff Chaney,

We are in mourning. A good friend has fallen by the wayside. The SEE EXPO, held annually in Fletcher, N.C. at the Western North Carolina Agricultural Center for 10 years, is no more. We miss this event already. The feeling of loss is overwhelming.

We last visited the EXPO in 2009. The drive over was scenic and very relaxing. The rented weekend cabin was inexpensive and glorious. The entire experience was most enjoyable. A true family activity, if ever there was one!

The monstrous parking lot was full all weekend. We were surprised at the level of attendance. Two large buildings housed booths by participating businesses, which ran the gamut of renewable energy and conservation. An emphasis was placed on education, with workshops held the entire weekend, presented by professionals in their fields. Most of the workshops were standing-room-only, and covered everything from Ampmobile electric vehicle conversions to geothermal heating & cooling systems, and anything in between. We learned volumes from the classes, and the feeling of community was unmatched.

Apparently, this fellowship was partially responsible for the downfall. One of the reasons given for the closure was that the event failed to attract new visitors. The “green community” was well represented, but not enough “converts” were coming. It sure didn’t look that way to me!

I am certainly no expert, but it seems to me that a little more “hands on” might do the trick. For example, several conversion electric vehicles were present. The owners of these could take a cue from David Hrivnak, a member of the Knoxville Electric Vehicle Association. David, at a recent meeting, made available a Tesla Roadster for members to enjoy test rides or drives.

I think strategies such as this would pique the interest of the general public. If everyone could experience this technology first-hand, I think there would be no going back!

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