Green Energy Doors Open

Because we don’t have enough to do for Harvest Fest weekend … we thought we’d sign up for Green Energy Doors Open on Saturday, October 4th, 2014! In actual fact it’s rather handy as we’ll already be at the Children’s Teaching Kitchen. We’ll be cooking up a storm with our Youth Cooking Program and prepping the Free Harvest Lunch for Harvest Fest on Sunday.

We’ll be hosting a little open house at the Children’s Teaching Kitchen between 2 and 5 pm. Feel free to stop by and learn more about our new photovoltaic system and the straw bale construction of the Kitchen. Please note … if you feel the need to volunteer for a bit and help us clean up after the cooking program … I’m pretty sure we won’t argue 😉

Local environmental group Green 13 is also hosting a tour of the green energy projects in the surrounding area finishing off here at the Kitchen. Check out their website for more information or to sign-up for the tour.

Green Energy Doors Open – Open House Information

Date: Saturday, October 4th, 2014
Time: 2 – 5 pm
Location: Children’s Teaching Kitchen, click here for directions

For more information about our green energy systems check out our story – Interview With A Solar Wagon.

An Interview with a Solar Wagon

Patience is a virtue. If it doesn’t work the first time, try and try again. There is a reason why some of these old adages still ring true today. Patience and a willingness to keep trying is why the Children’s Teaching Kitchen is here today. It’s also the reason why it has beautiful shiny new solar (photovoltaic) panels adorning the south-facing side of the roof!

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After a few false starts trying to get our panels installed last year our wonderful friends at the Toronto Renewable Energy Office came to the rescue. The Teaching Kitchen is now part of a group of City buildings with new solar arrays (multiple panels) that are part of the Ontario Power Authority’s MicroFit Program. This program allows people with smaller arrays of solar panels to sell the electricity they produce back to Toronto or Ontario Hydro. For more details on this program follow the link. Some of the other buildings include our friends at Warden Hilltop Community Centre, Edithvale Community Centre, Nielson Park Creative Centre, EMS Station 33 and York Civic Centre.

We’re excited to have our panels up and running! We’re also working away on new programs to help school groups and community members learn more about renewable energy.

For more information on how the solar panels work check out the final installment of our Teaching Kitchen Saga – A Sunny Epilogue, an interview with a Solar Wagon.

You can also check out a video of the solar panel installation by clicking here.

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Sun, Sun, Mr. Golden Sun …

The sun shines down on the Children’s Garden here in High Park – A LOT! It’s one of the main reasons why our garden grows so well (and dries out so quickly 🙂 ). In the past the spot our Garden now grows upon was once a large parking lot and picnic shelter. This means that the space around the Garden and Teaching Kitchen has few trees to block out all that lovely sunshine.

When we built the Children’s Teaching Kitchen it was always in the plans to include solar panels as a clean, renewable source of energy. Unfortunately it was just a little too far out of our budget range at the time. Fortunately this year we have the opportunity to install those all important solar panels and we couldn’t be happier! Yay! Woo hoo!

The building permit is now posted:

Building PermitAnd the panels will be put in place and connected to the power grid around the middle of next week. They will sit across the south facing roof which is perfectly (or almost perfectly) aligned to collect plenty of sunshine.

Teaching KitchenNot that you can tell from today’s weather (and yes I may have had a little too much fun with the filter settings on our camera. But the clouds in this shot are just too cool)!

We are so excited about installing our solar panels that I’m even posting a picture of the back of our building permit 😀 :

Building Permit from BehindWe hope to figure out a way to record how much energy is being produced by our panels. We’re aiming to have something posted regularly on our website to keep everyone updated.

So stay tuned for the epilogue to our Children’s Teaching Kitchen Story – From CaterpillarTo Butterfly!

And the sun shone down upon the High Park Kingdom …