Live Green at the Energy Fair

June 6, 2014 by  
Filed under Green Energy News

Each year the Midwest Renewable Energy Association (MREA) hosts its annual Energy Fair, transforming rural central Wisconsin into the global hot spot for renewable energy education.

The Energy Fair brings more than 18,000 people from nearly every state in the U.S. and several countries around the world to learn, connect with others, and inspire them to take action at home. The Energy Fair is the nation’s longest-running energy education event of its kind.

The MREA has created an exciting lineup of very different keynote speakers with passions that align with the MREA’s mission to promote renewable energy, sustainable living, and energy efficiency through education and demonstration.

This year marks the 25th anniversary of the Energy Fair, and this year’s lineup of speakers and events is sure to appeal to attendees of all ages.

Friday, June 20, 1:00 pm:  Marcin Jakubowski is the founder of Open Source Ecology, an open collaborative of engineers, producers, and builders who are making it their mission to create a collaborative economic platform that optimizes both production and distribution in order to bring about environmental regeneration, autonomy, and social justice. They are developing the Global Village Construction Set (GVCS) of the 50 most important machines for modern life, ranging from a tractor to an oven to a circuit maker. Jakubowski is producing open-source blueprints for these machines so that anyone could build and maintain these vital machines at a fraction of today’s normal cost.  The GVCS was recognized in Time magazine’s Best Inventions of 2012.

Saturday, June 21, 9:00 am: George Siemon, co-founder of Cooperative Regions of Organic Producer Pools (CROPP) and CEO of Organic Valley, will be opening Saturday morning’s breakfast. Siemon is one of the nation’s foremost organic agriculture advocates. He was instrumental in developing the national standards for organic certification, and he also initiated Farmers Advocating for Organics, the largest and only organic-focused granting fund in the U.S. Siemon has been known for nearly two decades for his leadership in organizing farmers and building market support for organic agriculture. His work champions an agriculture that supports family farms with fair and stable prices, humane treatment of farm animals, healthy soil and environment, and high-quality organic food.

Saturday, June 21, 1:00 pm: Saturday’s other keynote speaker will be Michael Noble. As the executive director of Fresh Energy since 1995, Noble has nearly 30 years of professional expertise in energy. He has been a key strategist for many major public policy innovations in the areas of energy efficiency, renewable energy development, global warming solutions, and strategies to reduce our reliance on oil. Come to his presentation to share in Noble’s passion for clean energy progress!

Sunday, June 22: Combining her passion for biology, environmental issues, and racing, Leilani Münter was the first carbon-neutral race car driver. For every race she runs, she adopts an acre of rainforest to offset the carbon footprint of her race car. Münter has raced on everything from short tracks to superspeedways in both open-wheel and stock cars. After several successful test runs, Münter made her debut at Daytona in 2010. Her car, sponsored by six environmental companies who teamed up to get her car on the track, became the first 100% eco-sponsored race car. In 2012, Münter returned to Daytona behind the wheel of the first race car to raise awareness of the plight

of the world’s oceans. For her efforts, Münter was named by Sports Illustrated as one of the top ten female race car drivers in the world.






Energetic Entertainment


The Energy Fair also offers a great lineup of entertainment throughout the event. This year’s bands include Baba Ghanooj (Friday) and Natty Nation (Saturday).


And new to this year’s event will be a Green Mini Demo Derby with DJ Bleeding Heart. There will be two heats of eight cars on Friday (6:00 pm), two heats of eight cars on Saturday (6:00 pm), and the championship round on Sunday (2:00 pm).  So what makes this a Green demo derby? The cars are powered by a mobile solar power station!



3:00 pm – Julie Patchouli and Bruce Hecksel (Forest Stage)

6:00 pm – Green Mini Demo Derby with DJ Bleeding Heart (Forest Stage)

7:00 pm – Josh Calhoun (Main Stage)

8:00 pm – Baba Ghanooj (Main Stage)



3:00 pm – Galynne Goodwill (Forest Stage)

6:00 pm – Green Mini Demo Derby with DJ Bleeding Heart (Forest Stage)

7:00 pm – Prodo (Main Stage)

8:30 pm – Natty Nation (Main Stage)



9:00 am – Norm Dombrowski’s Happy Notes (breakfast sponsored by Organic Valley)

2:00 pm – Tom Pease – Rainbow’s End

2:00 pm – Green Mini Demo Derby with DJ Bleeding Heart (Forest Stage)

3:00 pm – Eddie Danger (Main Stage)


While the entertainment lineup is free to attendees of the Energy Fair, evening entertainment tickets can also be purchased for $10 starting at 4:00 pm at the front gate.




SIDEBAR to Main Story




The Details


Date: Friday, June 20 through Sunday, June 22, 2014

Show Times: Friday and Saturday 9:00 am to 7:00 pm, Sunday 9:00 am to 4:00 pm

Location: Renew the Earth Institute, 7558 Deer Road, Custer, WI 54423


Features of the Energy Fair include:

- More than 200 exhibitors, featuring sustainable living and clean energy products

- More than 200 workshops, including introductory level to advanced hands-on education in the areas of solar, wind, green building, local sustainable food, and more.

- Clean Transportation Show featuring demonstration vehicles and exhibitors

- Green Building Demos displaying sustainable building techniques in action

- Sustainable Tables including workshops, chef demos and a farmers’ market to bring sustainability to your dinner table

- Inspiration keynotes, lively entertainment, great food, and local beer.


Coming from out of town but don’t know where to stay? The MREA offers tent and RV camping in its Back 40 Campground during the Energy Fair. Sites cost $20 per tent or RV per night and are located just one mile from the front gate. A shower trailer and Porta-Potties are available for your use. The Energy Fair also runs a free local shuttle from the fair to several local hotels in Stevens Point and Plover.


For more information about the 25th annual Energy Fair’s keynote speakers, tickets, entertainment, exhibitors, and more, visit


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