Solar Cars Coming Soon to Homestead National Monument of America During the American Solar Challenge!

solar car
Come see solar powered cars at Homestead National Monument of America on August 3 & 4, 2016!

Subscribe RSS Icon | What is RSS
News Release Date: July 8, 2016

1,975-mile solar car rally to visit 9 National Park Service sites in celebration of the agency's centennial

Beatrice, NE –Homestead National Monument of America is proud to support science innovation and celebrate the National Park Service Centennial by hosting a stop on the American Solar Challenge on August 3 and 4, 2016. University teams from around the world have designed and built solar-powered cars. Those that qualify will drive them 1,975 miles on the open road during an 8-day rally, stopping at 9 different National Park Service sites in 7 Midwestern states, including Homestead National Monument of America.

The American Solar Challenge cars will begin arriving at Homestead's Heritage Center on Wednesday August 3 from 4-6 p.m.Visitors are invited to see the cars, meet the teams, and experience a fun Environmental Fair from 6-9 p.m.Learn how to make sun-heated s'mores, talk to businesses and organizations about green products and technologies, and discover how climate change could impact the Midwest. On Thursday August 4 from 7–9 a.m., visitors will be able to view the solar cars that arrived the night before. Witness the waiving of the green flag at 9 a.m.that will send these cars back on the road to continue the rally. Then from 9 a.m.–1:30 p.m.other cars participating in the rally will be making pit/charging stops at Homestead's Heritage Center. The Environmental Fair will continue and food will be available for purchase both days.

As part of the 2016 Centennial, the National Park Service has challenged itself to provide more research and education around the effects of climate change on national park resources. The Green Parks Program encourages walking, biking, ride-sharing, and use of fuel-efficient or alternative-fuel vehicles. The American Solar Challenge highlights these efforts by bringing solar-powered cars to parks.

"We are excited to welcome the solar cars to Homestead National Monument of America. Visitors will get the chance to explore spectacular park resources, see cool cars that use innovative solar technology, and learn more about National Park Service efforts to reduce our impact on the environment," stated Superintendent Mark Engler.  

Every two years, the Innovators Educational Foundation organizes the American Solar Challenge, a collegiate student design competition to design, build, and drive solar-powered vehicles in a cross-country time/distance rally event. "We're looking forward to bringing the solar cars to 9 national parks across the Midwest during the American Solar Challenge 2016 and celebrating the National Park Service Centennial. We hope visitors will take this opportunity to see the solar cars, meet the teams, and find their park," says Event Organizer Gail Lueck.

The American Solar Challenge will begin at Cuyahoga Valley National Park in Ohio on July 30, 2016 and end in Wind Cave National Park in South Dakota on August 6, 2016. Midway stops include Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park, George Rogers Clark National Historical Park, Ulysses S. Grant National Historic Site, Wilson's Creek National Battlefield, Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site, Homestead National Monument of America, and Scotts Bluff National Monument. More information is available on the Midwest Regional Office website.

For more information about regulations and the university teams competing, visit Media-quality photos are available on the American Solar Challenge Flickr page.
Remember, Homestead National Monument of America has an exciting schedule of events planned for 2016. Keep up with the latest information by following us on Twitter (HomesteadNM) and Facebook (Homestead National Monument of America).

Homestead National Monument of America is a unit of the National Park Service located four miles west of Beatrice, Nebraska, and 45 miles south of Lincoln. Hours of operation are 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.daily through Labor Day. Admission is free of charge. For additional information, please call 402-223-3514 or visit


About the National Park Service. More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America's 412 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Visit us at,on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube

 Suggested caption:

 Come see solar powered cars at Homestead National Monument of America on August 3 &4, 2016!


Last updated: May 3, 2018

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

8523 West State Highway 4
Beatrice , NE 68310


(402) 223-3514

Contact Us