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The VIDA Blog

SolBus Shipping Celebration - Thursday, June 20 in Pennsylvania

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

We are celebrating this week, and if you live anywhere near Doylestown, Pennsylvania, we hope you'll join us. The SolBus made the 2,982-mile journey across the United States and is preparing for the cross-Atlantic voyage to Ghana. We'll be celebrating the next phase of the Solarize Ghana project with happy hour drinks and eats at Mesquito Grille in Doylestown, Pennsylvania on Thursday, June 20th

With a $10 donation at the door, you'll enjoy great Happy Hour Specials including:

  • Half Price Appetizers
  • $5 Margaritas
  • $1 Off Draft Beers
If you can't join us in Pennsylvania, you can still support the project by donating online and by sending us your own photo for the We Heart Solarize Ghana album

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Dance-a-thon 6th Graders Tour the SolBus in PA

Monday, June 17, 2013
Students and Teachers at Butler Elementary School got to check out the Solbus today in Chalfont, PA. The students took a tour of the bus and got to ask questions about technology and the process of shipping the bus. The 6th graders at Butler helped raise money by having a dance-a-thon. Their proceeds will support soalr installations on two of the six schools.

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Thanks for the Love Ohio!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

The SolBus left Chicago early this morning and has been on the road all day. Thanks to the folks in Youngstown Ohio who stopped by to say hi and show their support. It has been a long drive! 

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Next Stop: Penn State

Friday, June 14, 2013

Thanks to everyone in Chicago who came out to visit the SolBus and support Solarize Ghana! We'll be adding more of your awesome photos to the Facebook photo album

The SolBus will be at Penn State on Saturday, June 16 for Father’s Day. Come visit us at Otto’s Pub and Brewery between 1:00 and 3:00. Then the bus will take a special trip to the Center for Sustainability at Penn State, Davis Lettero’s alma mater and the place he built his first off-grid solar array in 2004 (featured in this Penn State News Story in 2005). 

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Come Visit the SolBus in Illinois Tomorrow

Thursday, June 13, 2013

VIDA’s friends in Illinois are hosting a fundraiser for Solarize Ghana tomorrow night (Friday, June 14). We’d love to see you if you live in the area! Stop by for a drink and a tour of the SolBus. We’ll be at Tracy's Tavern in Clarendon Hills from 6:30 to 10:00 p.m. (401 55th Street).

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From Germany to Ghana - Solar Panels Are On Their Way!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Solar panels are the heart of our Solarize Ghana project. In a few months, the panels will be providing clean, renewable energy to six schools and four medical clinics in rural Ghana.

While VIDA has done a number of small-scale solar projects in West Africa, this is the first time we are shipped pallets of panels to West Africa. We’ve learned a lot about international shipping the past few months thanks to a few incredible, patient people and companies.

We are sending out a huge THANK YOU to SolarWorld Germany for donating all of the solar panels to the Solarize Ghana project and graciously storing the panels for us in Germany while we learned the ropes of international shipping. 


Thanks also to our friend Johannes Liem who spent an evening translating the SolarWorld donation agreement from German to English.

And thanks to James Lovell from DHL who patiently worked with us to make sure the panels would arrive safely in Ghana. And finally, thanks to our partner organization, Disaster Volunteers of Ghana for arranging the pick-up and storage of the panels once they get to Ghana.

In less than two months, the solar panels and all the energy they can harness will be in the hands of those who need them most.   

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Add Your City to the SolBus Tour!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Thanks to everyone who welcomed the SolBus to Reno and who supported Solarize Ghana! The bus is on its way to North Platte, Nebraska next, where Dave Lettero will meet with hundreds of middle school kids to talk about solar energy and West Africa. Let us know if you’d like us to add your city to the SolBus tour, especially if you live in Pennsylvania, New York or Baltimore! 

Here is the schedule so far:

June 11-12: North Platte, Nebraska - More information coming soon! 

June 14: Clarendon Hills, Illinois - 6:30-10 p.m. at Tracy's Tavern (401 55th Street, Clarendon Hills)

June 16: State College, Pennsylvania - More information coming soon! 

Click here to check out more photos of people who support Solarize Ghana! 

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Fun for the Whole Family - SolBus at the Discovery Museum in Reno Today

Sunday, June 09, 2013
Thanks to everyone who came out to support Solarize Ghana last night at St. James and this morning at the Midtown Market in Reno! The SolBus will be at the Discovery Museum in Reno from 2:00 to 5:00 today. Stop by with your whole family for kid-friendly solar demonstrations and tours of the SolBus.

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Have a Drink for a Good Cause Tonight

Saturday, June 08, 2013

Where is the best party in Reno this Saturday night? St. James Infirmary of course! The SolBus will be parked out front, and St. James will be selling $10 VIDA bracelets, which will entitle you to happy hour drink specials all night ($2 off draft beer, $2 well drinks, and $2 off house cocktails). All the proceeds from the bracelets will go to Solarize Ghana and help bring clean, renewable energy to thousands of people in Ghana. Pete Barnato will be at St. James hosting the Saturday Night Dance Party, and you can add your photo the the We Support Solarize Ghana Album.  So drink and dance on the cheap for a good cause! 

St. James is located at 445 California Avenue. The party starts at 7 PM.

If you can’t join us tonight at St. James, you can support the project by donating online

Many thanks! 

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We Need Your SolBus Playlist Recommendations

Friday, June 07, 2013

(Carly Lettero / text and photos)

The SolBus spent a night at Summer Lake Hot Springs in Oregon and was on the road at dawn to finish the drive to Reno. Dave and the Solarize Ghana crew will be in Reno for the next three days, and then they’ll begin the long journey to the east coast. With 2,637 miles to go, we need just the right music. What should be on our playlist? 

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