The first Saturday in October features one of my favorite annual events — what used to be called the “Golden Solar Tour” but which has been renamed the “Metro Denver Green Homes Tour.” The name change is significant not only because the tour now includes homes across Jefferson County and in Denver, but because having solar panels is no longer enough to be on this tour. Homes have to present varied and different aspects of sustainability, making the tour a valuable learning experience for all.
For example, on this year’s tour you’ll be able to visit such sites as the Geos Community in Arvada (pictured here) where all the homes are net zero energy, incorporating geothermal heating powered by the sun. Golden Real Estate’s net zero office is on the tour, too, demonstrating our use of heat pump mini-splits to heat and cool our office. A “tiny house” at the Colorado School of Mines is also on the tour.
It’s a self-guided tour. For $10, you pick up a guidebook and map at Jefferson Unitarian Church (JUC) at 14350 West 32nd Avenue or at Golden Real Estate’s office at 17695 South Golden Road.
Each stop on the tour is open for viewing between 9 am and 4 pm. Then you can return to JUC for a reception with free food and beer from 4 to 7pm, during which time there will be an “Electric Vehicle Roundup” in the JUC parking lot, where you can sit and possibly ride in various makes of electric and plug-in cars being demonstrated by their owners and by a few car dealers. Indoors, during the reception, there will be an eco-expo of various vendors of green home products and services.
That’s all happening next Saturday, Oct. 6th, but this Saturday, Sept. 29th, is the Boulder Green Home Tour, which I always like to attend. Both tours include over a dozen stops, each one an educational experience regarding sustainable construction/renovation. The Boulder tour is $15/person when purchased in advance at their website, which is www.BoulderGreenHomeTour.org. You can get a sneak peak at the homes on the Boulder tour on the group’s Facebook page.