This post was written by the staff at Coyote Trails School of Nature, located in Medford.
We are delighted to share with you our endeavor at the Coyote Trails Nature Center!
We decided in 2013 to become a “net zero” solar-powered property. We were successful at finding marvelous partners for the project. We went back and reviewed the original Master Plan from 2006 that came with the property, and saw that approval was given for an amphitheater… the idea of a pavilion/amphitheater multi-use space was born to house the new solar panels.
We had the full and enthusiastic backing of Medford Parks & Recreation, as well as the City of Medford. Funding for the project was provided by the Pacific Power Blue Sky Program Customers, Oregon Department of Energy, Energy Trust of Oregon, and grants from the Carrico Family Foundation, the West Family Foundation, and Plum Creek Foundation.
The pavilion serves as a valuable renewable energy demonstration project with interpretive signage. It also allows for the new safety lighting we’ve installed in this dark area of the park.
It is estimated that the solar panels will reduce the center’s carbon footprint by at least 229 tons per year.
The new 26-foot by 46-foot pavilion, which will soon be ADA-accessible – allows Coyote Trails to hold outdoor events at night and during inclement weather enhancing public education. This project will result in thousands more people becoming better educated about renewable energy, and the energy expense saved – estimated at $2,000 a year – will help us reach more low-income children.
True South Solar built the pavilion’s solar array. True South’s clients include many individuals and companies, such as the Rogue Valley International Airport, RHT Energy Solutions, and Rogue Creamery.
The solar pavilion volunteer team includes: Gene Abell, Abell Architectural Group Inc.; Richard Anderson, Disabilities Recreation Project; Dave Bish, Plant Oregon; Steve Cossin, Coyote Trails; Marty Daniels, Valley Electric; Eric Hansen, True South Solar; Ralph Henderson, Rogue Community College. Construction Department; Kerry KenCairn, KenCairn Landscape Architecture; Molly Kreuzman, Coyote Trails Nature Center; Sharon Keppler, Evergreen Roofing; Karin Onkka, Onkka Design; Dave Ouellette, Music Teacher; Roger Owen, Owen Woodworking; Lynne Reardon, Coyote Trails; Shawn Schreiner, True South Solar.