American Solar Energy Society touring through NEO Sept. 30 -- Oct. 1

Sep. 28—The American Solar Energy Society's National Solar Tour will be rolling through Northeast Ohio stopping at multiple locations Sept. 30 to Oct. 2.

The tour is in its 29th year in visiting regional host sites, noted coordinator Tom Rapini.

In addition to over a dozen open houses throughout the weekend, there will be two guided bus tours, and an Electric Vehicle Rally from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m., Sept. 30, at Laketran's Wickliffe Park-n-Ride, at 29551 Lakeland Blvd.

"Visitors can view several electric cars and check out the transit system's new electric bus fleet," Rapini said, adding Laketran is offering free EV charging during the event.

The West Tour Bus will leave the Willoughby Senior Center at 9 a.m., Sept. 30, and will return at 2 p.m. It will travel to eight tour sites in western Lake County and eastern Cuyahoga County.

The East Tour Bus will leave the Mentor Senior Center at 9 a.m., Oct. 1, and return at 1 p.m. It will travel to eight tour sites in Mentor and Painesville.

Each tour includes a free lunch.

The Mentor tour still has ample seating available, Rapini said.

"We're going to see a lot, a range of arrays (panels), including a 3,000-watt residential and a 400,000-watt commercial at Cres Cor on Heisley (Road)," he added. "We want the message out there that solar is doable, that it's a viable option and affordable here in Northeast Ohio because people have a belief that it's very expensive. In 2007, I paid $3.25 a watt and this year I've replaced them with 75-cent watts, better panels with more efficiency."

To sign up for a bus tour, contact Valerie Garrett at 440-231-0842.

For information on tour sites, visit