Living Green: Celebrating electric cars

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SARASOTA - St. Armands Circle will be electrified this weekend. Sunday is National Plug In Day, meant to bring awareness to the many benefits to driving an electric vehicle. To celebrate, Suncoast electric vehicle owners and dealers will be showing off the latest cars that use battery power to get around town.

Ken Stokes loves his Chevy Volt. In fact, his license plate says it all about this car's capabilities: "Kic Gas". It can go for thirty miles on a charge, then a small gasoline engine charges the batteries for extended range trips.

"Today when I drove down here from Lakewood Ranch to see you, I drove all electric. This morning, I got 100 miles a gallon driving it. It's huge efficiency, cost me about 20 cents to get here so from a consumer standpoint, driving a car like that, that's really efficient and cheap to operate is fantastic," says Ken Stokes, National Plug In Day City Captain and co-organizer.

At Sunday's event from 11AM-3PM on St. Armands Circle, you'll see cars like the Volt, the all electric Nissan Leaf, along with high performance electric vehicles from Tesla and Fiskar. There will also be opportunities to drive them as well. Organizers say that's all it takes to convince people, these cars are special.

"People have seen ads for the cars, but I think very few people have had the opportunity to really get up close and personal with the vehicles to understand their performance, their dynamics, their economy, the air emissions, all the different things that make these cars amazing," says Stokes.

Activities begin Sunday morning at Selby Five Points Park in Downtown Sarasota at 10 am, followed by a silent parade out to St. Armands. Silent because these cars make very little noise! You can also see the just released Tesla Model S, a new four door electric sedan and the only one in Florida.

For more information, visit the National Plug In Day website