Reaching members at the fair

Electric School Bus at the State Fair

An all-electric school bus was on display outside the Eco Experience at the Minnesota State Fair through a partnership between Great River Energy, Dakota Electric Association and Schmitty & Sons.

Great River Energy continued its presence at the Great Minnesota Get-Together this year with a sponsorship of the Milk Run 5k event and by promoting its battery electric school bus pilot program at the Eco Experience building and in parades around the fairgrounds.

The Minnesota State Fair brings people from around the state together in one location for 12 days out of the year, which is an ideal time for Great River Energy to celebrate the diverse membership its cooperatives serve.

“Through the sponsorship of the Milk Run, we are able to honor the dairy and agricultural industry that is representative of much of our member cooperatives’ service territory,” said Andrea Pendergast, Great River Energy communications coordinator.

Another way Great River Energy educated fairgoers this year is through its presence in the Eco Experience, an exhibit with hands-on activities, demonstrations and resources hosted by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency.

On display outside the building was an electric school bus manufactured by The Lion Electric Co. that will hit the streets in the Lakeville Area School District this fall through a partnership between Great River Energy, Dakota Electric Association and transportation company Schmitty & Sons. It also joined the daily parade around the fairgrounds twice.

The program is designed to study the economic and emissions benefits the bus provides, demonstrate battery electric technology in a cold-weather climate and exhibit its performance on suburban and rural routes.

Great River Energy also partnered with Windustry on the Wind Energy Center, an interactive museum-quality display within the Eco Experience which taught attendees how wind energy can provide both environmental and economic benefits to Minnesotans.