15 electric car plugged inSustainable Sandhills will host its second annual "Drive Electric" event Oct. 3 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Fayetteville Area Transportation and Local History Museum.

The event, which is a part of the National Drive Electric Week, will feature various opportunities for drivers to learn about electric vehicle options in the region.

“The goal is to provide awareness to the community about electric vehicles and the benefits they have — like improving air quality, reducing our dependence on foreign petroleum, and just showing people that ‘EV’ can be very fun to drive,” said Joenelle Kimbrough, executive director of Sustainable Sandhills.

There will be multiple Teslas available at the event for the public to test-drive. Visitors can sign up online for 15 minute test-drive slots and register at https://sustainablesandhills.org/driveelectric2020/.

If anyone owns an electric vehicle, they are welcome to bring it to the car show and talk to people about the experience of driving an electric vehicle and the value of its ownership, Kimbrough said.

The family-friendly event will see food trucks and activities for children like a "build your own car" craft and a book signing by local children’s book author Alison Paul Klakowicz, author of "Mommy’s Big Red Monster Truck."

The "Drive Electric" show will comply with COVID-19 health precautions. The cars will be wiped and sanitized between each user, there will be mostly touch-free activities and children will each get their own set of crayons.

“We would love to have you come out and learn about electric vehicles and benefits they offer our community — see how fun they are to drive,” Kimbrough said.

The event will host community partners involved with "EV" infrastructure, incluuding the Fayetteville Public Works Commission, The Fayetteville Area Metropolitan Planning Organization, and Central Electric Membership Corporation, which will inform the attendees on where to find chargers for their electric cars, and of new technologies regarding "EV" that are out on the horizon, she said.

All of these organizations have charging stations throughout the area or they have electric vehicles in their fleets.

Kimbrough said the two-fold motivation behind the event was that Sustainable Sandhills is the “air quality program manager” for the region and the second being the national drive electric week.

“Electric vehicles are important to air quality because they don't use gasoline; they help cut out on emissions which can help improve the area's air quality,” she said.

Based in Fayetteville, Sustainable Sandhills started about 15 years ago with the mission of creating resilient environmental, economic and social resources. The organization has a nine-county reach, serving about 1 million people.

“Our goal is to connect with people and help them understand how natural resources affect their lives and vice versa,” Kimbrough said. “We just want people to understand that we need to be responsible with our resource use now in order to have what we need for the future generations.”

The Fayetteville Area Transportation and Local History Museum is located at 325 Franklin St. in downtown Fayetteville. For more information about Sustainable Sandhills and the event, visit https://sustainablesandhills.org

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