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The Brightest in Solar Homes to Shine in Public Tour

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e:mail: Public Affairs

Golden, Colo., Oct. 4, 1996 -- The most innovative solar homes in the Denver-metro area will be open to the public Oct. 19 as part of the National Solar Home Tour sponsored by the American Solar Eerrgy Society (ASES) in Boulder.

The tour includes 16 homes that reflect a range of passive- and active-solar technologies, styles and costs, from energy self-sufficient "off the grid" mountain homes to contemporary, urban houses with state-of-the-art energy efficiency features. Some of the solar home owners report total heating and cooling costs of $20 a year.

More than 50 communities in 26 states are taking part in this year's national tour.

Locally the homes will be open to the public from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The self-guided tour has two starting points: the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's (NREL) Visitors Center, 15013 Denver West Parkway, Golden, for homes in Lakewood, Golden, Evergreen, Conifer and Idaho Springs, and the Boulder Energy Conservation Center, 1702 Walnut St., for homes in Boulder.

Maps to each home and descriptions of their solar energy features will be available at each starting point. The tour's cost is $5.00.

For directions to NREL's Visitors Center and other questions about the tour, call 384-6565 or Ron Larson at 526-9629. In Boulder call the Energy Conservation Center at 441-3278.