National Drive Electric Week

National Drive Electric Week
Kalamazoo, MI
Sep 16, 2015

Day: Wednesday, September 16, 2015 NOTE: this event has already happened, find current-year events on the Attend page.
Time: 3:30 pm - 6:30 pm
Location: People's Food Co-op, The 100 Mile (Farmer's) Market
507 Harrison St.
Kalamazoo, MI 49007
Contact the event organizers, which took place in 2015.

Event Report

The week included two showings of "Who Killed the Electric Car?" - one at Kalamazoo Public Library Main Branch, one at Kalamazoo College. A total of about 40 people saw the movie. The Q&A sessions that followed indicated that almost all audience members changed their preconceived notions about viability and practicality of electric cars.

At the Ride-and-Drive, everyone who rode or drove came away impressed. We asked each one to fill out a brief questionnaire beforehand and a followup afterwards. The followup asked just one question: What did you learn? Almost all mentioned how quiet and smooth their ride was. Most talked about how impressed they were with practicality, speed, and acceleration. No one gave any negative answers. One rider made a numbered list of 20 impressive things he learned about driving electric. We clearly won people over!

We also made several awards to local groups and individuals who've led our community in service to a sustainable clean-energy future.

photo by: Bruce Brown, Sierra Club SouthWest Michigan Group
On the far left, dressed all in black, is the Tesla Roadster. Behind the table are Sierra Club SouthWest Michigan Group volunteers Gail Nelson (in the red hat) and Jim Ferner (wearing the shades).

Event Description


Electric cars are available, affordable, sensible, and CLEAN.

Come to the Ride-and-Drive Demonstration and find how much FUN they are too!

Sign up to take a ride, or even drive one. Note: If you want to drive, we'll need to make a copy of your driver's license.

An all-electric BMW will be one of the cars at the Ride-and-Drive. Come see it and the Chevy Volt, Nissan LEAF, Mitsubishi i-MiEV, a Zero electric mortorcycle, and the '92 Honda Civic that Paul Pancella converted to all-electric. A Tesla Model S will arrive at about 5:00pm!

It's all happening at the People's Food Co-op 100-Mile Market, 507 Harrison Street, Kalamazoo, from 3:30pm to 6:30pm Wednesday, September 16.

Photo: Envision Solar for

With your own net metering, or even off-the-grid solar-powered charging station, you can power your EV to run on 100% fossil-fuel-free CLEAN energy!

Four Elements Energy will be on hand at our Ride-and Drive Demonstration with their portable solar-powered charging station to show you how you can make this work for you. Representatives from Sierra Club solar partner Solar Winds can explain how net metering works in Michigan. They will have more EV info for you too.

NEWS for Kalamazoo Drive Electric Week

Check back on this page for news about the National Drive Electric Week in Kalamazoo as it unfolds.

Saturday September 5, 2015

Wednesday September 2, 2015

  • Our press release is out! Ask your local newspaper if they are covering the event!
  • The Kalamazoo College movie screening has moved from the classroom to Recital Hall in the Fine Arts Building (see below).

Wednesday August 25, 2015.

Monday August 24, 2015.

  • Kalamazoo College to be designated National Drive Electric Week Kalamazoo Ambassador School
  • Kalamazoo Public Library, Central Library Adult Programming, to offer electric car movie viewing.

EVENTS scheduled for Kalamazoo Drive Electric Week

Two Showings, with Q&A to follow, of Who Killed the Electric Car?

Who Killed The Electric Car? The movie, starring Martin Sheen, Tom Hanks, and Mel Gibson, presents an overview of electric car history, focusing on the 1990's creation and mysterious disappearance of almost 5,000 electric cars that were quietly built and leased, but more quietly collected and crushed, in spite of offers to purchase them above cost. Who Killed the Electric Car? won several awards. Among them:
  • 2006 Mountain Film Special Jury Prize.
  • 2006 Canberra International Film Festival Audience Award.
  • 2006 Best Documentary, Environmental Media Awards.
  • Writers Guild of America Best Documentary of 2006.
  • 2007 Broadcast Film Critics Association Best Documentary Feature.

First showing

Kalamazoo Public Library is generously supporting National Electric Drive Week - Kalamazoo with the week's kickoff presentation of Who Killed the Electric Car?

  • Wednesday September 9, 7pm - 8:45pm
  • Van Deusen Room, Downtown Central Library, 315 Rose Street, Kalamazoo

Second showing

Kalamazoo College, chosen to be National Drive Electric Week's Kalamazoo Ambassador, will also host Who Killed the Electric Car?

  • Tuesday September 15, 11:35am - 12:30pm
  • Recital Hall, Light Fine Arts Building, Kalamazoo College, 1200 Academy Street, Kalamazoo
  • Special guest speaker: Ben Brown, member Sierra Club SouthWest Michigan Group, Electric Auto Association, Plug-in America
Plan to attend one of these showings. You will be amazed!

The feature event of the week: Electric car exhibit and free ride-and-drive demonstrations!

Kalamazoo Drive Electric Week co-sponsor the People's Food Co-op 100-Mile Market will host Kalamazoo's first-ever all-out public education event on behalf of clean - zero-tailpipe-emission - electric driving!

  • Wednesday, September 16, 3:30-6:30pm
  • People's Food Co-op, 100 Mile Market, 507 Harrison St. Kalamazoo
  • Sign up at the 100-Mile Market to ride and/or drive an electric car and get your 'EV Grin On!'
  • Get the real scoop: Talk to Kalamazoo area owners about their actual electric vehicle experience.
  • See local electric vehicle models and speak with area dealers.
  • Learn about setting up your own solar-powered charging station.
  • Demonstrations, displays, vendors.
  • Be present at the first area awards recognizing local leaders in sustainable electric transportation.
  • Plus prizes, gifts, and more...

Want to know more?

Learn more about electric cars at these links:

For your viewing pleasure, a few entertaining and informative videos:

Organizations and supporters of National Drive Electric Week Kalamazoo

Cole Nissan, Cole Automotive Group
  • Tim Cole
  • Charlie Jeffrey
Kalamazoo College
  • Mary Jane Underwood Stryker Center for Civic Engagement
  • Facilities Management
  • Sustainability Program
Western Michigan University
  • Dr. Harold Glasser, Executive Director of Campus Sustainability & Professor
People's Food Cooperative 
Kalamazoo Public Library

Sierra Club: Southwest Michigan Group

  • Ben Brown, Co-Captain
  • Bruce Brown, Co-Captain

Matt Lechel, Chris Dilley, Sasha Acker, David Schuster, Paul Pancella, Jacob Pinney-Johnson, David Reynolds, Guy Wiggins, Erwin Maier, Lori Truac, William Anderson, Jeff Spoelstra, Gail Nelson, Alison Geist, Paul Manstrom, Liefie, Greggory the Great, Pamela Thwaite, Tom Saxton, Jim France, Lora Ortiz, Dan Runyon, Patricia Farris, Art Toy, Rebekah Kik, Liza Winters, James Skillen, Nathan Danillson, Mary Beth Farhat, Kelly Haak, Carrie Finch, Barb Heinonen

Registered Attendees

There are currently 40 attendees registered.

Owners of These Vehicles Have Registered To Attend

Vehicle Registered
Nissan Leaf (2011-2017) 4
Chevrolet Volt 3
EV Conversion 2
BMW i3 REx 1
Ford Focus Electric 1
Mitsubishi i-MiEV 1
Tesla Model S 1
Tesla Roadster 1
Zero Motorcycle 1
9 Models 15

Registered attendees report 255,599 electric miles driven.

In the News…

Presented By

Plugin America logo
Electric Vehicle Association logo
Sierra Club logo
EVHybridNoire logo
Drive Electric USA logo

Platinum Level Sponsors

Silver Level Sponsor

Bronze Level Sponsor

Green Level Sponsor

All NDEW 2024 sponsors support Plug In America's coordination of National Drive Electric Week.

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