Earth Day Celebration

April 22, 2011 marked the 10th Annual Rolla Earth Day Celebration. Despite the looming threat of rain, the sun persevered! Over 400 local elementary school kids excitedly toured the Solar Village, guided by students from the Missouri S&T Solar House Team. Many curious questions were answered including, “How do solar panels work?”. One team member answered, “It’s like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich sitting in the sun. When the sun’s rays hit the peanut butter, it melts and goes through the jelly. This movement is what creates electricity.” (For all you sciency folks, this can be equated to an electron crossing a p-n junction.)

After the hustle and bustle of the morning’s tours, families and other Earth Day attendees walked through the homes to satisfy their curiosity for sustainable living. To set up a personal tour of the Solar Village, contact Julie Wilson ( at the Institute for Environmental Excellence (