Just back from SolFest 10!

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by jillianjiggs, Aug 21, 2005.

  1. jillianjiggs

    jillianjiggs Well-Known Member

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    We finally made it up to SolFest in Hopland, CA this year. We've been wanting to go for a few years now, and finally had the time and a little extra cash to go. Hopland is about a 3 1/2 hour drive from here. We booked a hotel room online so that we wouldn't have to drive the whole way in one day. We got all the way to Santa Rosa, and it was about 10 o'clock at night. After going inside the hotel to check in, we discovered that although we had confirmed our booking for Friday night, Hotels.com booked us for Sept. 16th! We were stranded three hours from home, late at night, and couldn't find a room anywhere. The kid at the desk took pity on us, cancelled the Sept. booking, and gave us a room for $80 less that the going rate.

    Saturday started off a little gloomy and wet, but after the summer we've had, I welcomed the gloom! It's about a hour's drive from Santa Rosa up 101 to Hopland & the Solar Living Institute. Parking wasn't too bad, and we took the shuttle to the festival. It was HOT in Hopland, not at all different from Sacramento.

    There were a LOT of solar energy vendors, a hydroponics booth, a few random housing supply booths, and clothing vendors. We walked around for awhile, and I was famished. My husband about freaked when he couldn't find anything non-vegan to eat. We ended up finding two booths that sold food that looked palatable, and settled on some garlic fries and quesadillas. We topped it off with a little Ben & Jerry's for dessert.

    I ended up signing up for a sweet deal with Mother Earth News, got years 1970-1990 on cd, and got some biodegradable 'plastic' utensils. The Institute's store was the best. Outside, they have foam tiles (they look like stone) that allow you to grow plants on your walls. The store is made from straw bales, and was comfortably cool with only a few fans for circulation. I could have spent a fortune in there!

    The conclusion? Definately neat, but uncomfortably hot. Worth the drive? I guess so. The Institute's store, the Native American dancers, and the stop at the Jelly Belly factory for Belly Flops on the way home were the best parts!
     
  2. kathy H

    kathy H kathyh

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    California
    Ive always thought it looked interesting but have never gone, thanks for the report.
     

  3. mightybooboo

    mightybooboo Well-Known Member

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    Sooo,should we go?
    Did they have vendors for hot water,PV,and refers?Did they have a sundanzer refer/freezer going?

    We pretty much have the TMEN collection up to the late 80s,such neat stuff in em,you did good to get em. :bow:

    BooBoo
     
  4. jillianjiggs

    jillianjiggs Well-Known Member

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    They had all kinds of pv, solar water heating, wind power, water purifying, rainwater collection, etc. vendors. If you're in an area where you're unable to find such resources, it's worth it. We're in California already though, and have these resources in our backyard. I'm not sure about the sundanzer refers, but they had several models of appliances meant to be used with pv systems.
     
  5. mightybooboo

    mightybooboo Well-Known Member

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    We are Socal,it would be a nice trip,I enjoy seeing the products up close and personal.I saw one sun danzer running,would like to see another so I know it wasnt smoke and mirrors before I purchase it,but if I never do will take the plunge,seems real.

    BooBoo