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It’s hard to believe, but autumn is already nearly upon us, and as the heat finally subsides, it’s a great time of year to get out and tour our beautiful region. Folks from Southern Illinois know all about crawling the scenic Wine Trail, and have probably spent a serene weekend or two exploring the gorgeous Shawnee National Forest and watching the leaves turn. But there is another local excursion coming up in October that you will not want to miss.

The 2018 Heartland Solar Tour is upon us! Each year, residents and businesses in Southern Illinois open their homes and buildings to the public to show off their renewable energy technologies. This provides a truly unique opportunity to speak neighbor-to-neighbor about all aspects of living with a renewable energy source, such as what the purchase and installation process is like, strategies for efficient living, and how their monthly power bills are affected.

The Heartland Solar Tour is part of the larger American Solar Energy Society National Solar Tour, which is the biggest grassroots solar event in the U.S. Tour attendees get to see actual on-site solar installations, meet the people who own them and learn about how they work. AES Solar is thrilled to be sponsoring our chapter of this event and will be available all day for a guided Q&A. With more than 19 years of experience in solar design and installation, our technicians are knowledgeable, enthusiastic, and can’t wait to meet you.

The 2018 Heartland Solar Tour takes place on Saturday, October 6. For more information, including a list of tour stops as they are added, visit heartlandsolartour.org. If you can’t make the date, several locations are also open for year-round unguided touring. Do you own a home or business that utilizes renewable energy? If so, we’d love to add you to the tour. Give us a call at 618-988-0888 or write tech@aessolar.com to sign up.

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Aur 'DaEnergyMon' Beck, is a NABCEP Certified Solar PV Installer™ with AES Solar in Carterville and started educating himself about renewable energy as a teenager even before (at age 15) he moved into a camper in his parent's driveway to live off grid solar and ended up living off grid for 18 years. Aur understands that living how he does makes it very easy to advocate for a life of simpler living, energy efficiency and renewable energy. His name Aur (pronounced "or") means light or to enlighten in Hebrew. Can be reached at tech@AESsolar.com or 618-988-0888.

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