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PETERBOROUGH

Green growing, technology featured

6th Annual Greenerborough:  Peterborough festival attendees enjoy food, music and dance

  • Peterborough celebrates going green.<br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Peterborough celebrates going green.<br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Peterborough celebrates going green.<br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Peterborough celebrates going green.<br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Peterborough celebrates going green.<br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Peterborough celebrates going green.<br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Peterborough celebrates going green.<br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Peterborough celebrates going green.<br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Peterborough celebrates going green.<br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Peterborough celebrates going green.<br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Dancers Samuel Foucher, left, and Kirk Dale of Jack and the Green Morris Men, a Monadnock-region based group of Morris dancers, lead a line of dancers on Grove Street during Greenerborough on Saturday. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Peterborough celebrates going green.<br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Peterborough celebrates going green.<br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Peterborough celebrates going green.<br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Peterborough celebrates going green.<br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Joe Hanglin, the owner of Blake Hill Preserves in Grafton, Vt., dishes out samples to Sarah Saling, left, Casey Hartman and Nikki Chu, who came down to Peterborough from Boston Saturday to hike Mount Monadnock and attend Greenerborough. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

PETERBOROUGH — Old mixed with new at the 6th Annual Greenerborough: New England’s Green Living Expo and Festival, as bell-bedecked Morris dancers filled the streets with a little old-time English folk dancing, and farmers showed off organically grown flowers and produce, while local companies highlighted the latest in green technology.

On Saturday, Grove Street in Peterborough was blocked off as vendors on the street and inside the Town House displayed their wares and shared the latest in green technology and growing techniques. In addition to speakers who gave talks on topics ranging from raising backyard chickens to doing your own maple sugaring and canning, a few companies were focusing on technological ways to be green.

Grid Be Gone, a Peterborough-based company that was born after a devastating ice storm in 2008 left the area without power for days on end, strives to offer services to allow people to live as energy-independent as possible. This year, they presented two new technologies. The first is their new mobile response unit, powered by a small wind turbine.

The mobile response unit ranges in size and can produce 2 kilowatts to 35 kilowatts of power, and can be used in emergencies to allow residents to charge cell phones or to power gas pumps so people can fill their tanks.

The other new technology Grid Be Gone presented was a micro hydro-electric unit . When placed in a 10-foot pipe, the unit can generate 1,600 watts of electricity powered by the water through the pipe.

For those that own electric or hybrid vehicles, there are ways to make what you have more efficient. ConVerdant Vehicles of Concord helps people make the most of their hybrid vehicle. An after-market company, ConVerdant Vehicles specializes in adding an additional battery to electric cars to stretch the mileage on new and old hybrids.

This year, they’ve found an additional use for Prius model vehicles: emergency generators. Using their “Plug Out” kit, ConVerdant Vehicles can turn a hybrid car into a machine capable of producing 1 to 4 kilowatts of power. Depending on power usage, 4 kilowatts is enough to run most houses, owner Randy Bryan said, and at minimum the power is enough to run essential electronics.

More efficient ways to heat homes was also a topic of discussion covered by one local vendor. Ken MacDonald of Peterborough decided to share his knowledge of a greener heating process after he went out to do some research in preparation for purchasing a wood pellet stove. He went to the bookstore, but couldn’t find any literature on the subject, so had to do his own research online and by going to local stores that sold them and learning as much as he could. When he was satisfied, and had purchased his own, he decided to share his store of knowledge by compiling it into one book: “The Pellet Stove Almanack: Home Heating Joins the 21st Century.”

Pellet stoves monitor room temperature, and adjust to meet the heat demand as changes occur, so homes are heated more evenly.

“When you go into a person’s house, you can tell within a few minutes whether they’re heating with pellets or a furnace,” MacDonald said.

Local farmers were also in the area, selling produce. Sheila Nichols of Brimstone Woods in Antrim said she uses her animals to do the prep work for her on her farm, instead of equipment. The farm raises chickens, pigs, goats and sheep. Using electric fencing, which is easy to move, Nichols employs her goats first to eat extra rush, and then sends in her chickens and pigs to root the area and turn up the dirt, fertilizing the soil all the while. When one area is ready, the whole operation shifts to a new area, keeping her whole farm evenly turned and giving the animals fresh ground.

“I think it’s better than machinery,” she said. “Everybody has a purpose, and that’s a good thing.”

Ashley Saari can be reached at 924-7172 ext. 235 or asaari@ledgertranscript.com. She’s on Twitter at @AshleySaari.

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