National Drive Electric Week to “Electrify the Island” at Mote





Electric vehicles and other eco-friendly technologies will show their power during “Electrify the Island”: the Sarasota-based festival for the nationwide celebration National Drive Electric Week.

This free event will take place from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Saturday Sept. 20, on the grounds of Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium on City Island, Sarasota. Mote is a world-class marine science and education institution that launched a Sustainable Energy Initiative in 2012 to enhance the Lab’s environmentally sound practices.

Electrify the Island will feature a plug-in electric vehicle (EV) expo, ride-and-drive sessions that allow visitors to test some of the sleekest EVs around, including cars from Gettel Nissan, Sunset Chevrolet and Tesla, along with vendors focused on sustainability and energy efficiency, educational booths, great food and a special discount at Mote Aquarium (below). Electric vehicle experts and owners will be on hand to showcase the latest in EV technology and help share the benefits of driving electric.

Florida Power & Light Company (FPL), partner in Electrify the Island and multiple Drive Electric Week events in Florida, will present its “Electric Avenue,” where attendees can enjoy a photo op with the hybrid-electric Porsche Panamera and other activities. Electric vehicle owners can also visit FPL’s special hospitality tent where they can participate in exclusive contests and more. FPL is committed to serve as a trusted source of information on electric vehicles for its customers.

  • Full event details for the public below.
  • To sponsor this event or become a vendor, contact Stacy Alexander at 941-388-4441, ext. 509, or contact Chris Sharek at 941-915-6003,
  • To RSVP your EV for display, contact Patrick Gannon at 941-357-6224,

This is the third National Drive Electric Week (formerly called National Plug In Day) celebration held in Sarasota, following previous successful events at Mote and St. Armands Circle. This year’s event will spark even more enthusiasm as part of the coast-to-coast national celebration involving more than 80 locations across the U.S. Together, these events aim to draw global attention to the environmental and economic benefits of plug-in EVs. 

Electrify the Island is possible thanks to national partners Electric Auto Association, Plug In America and Sierra Club along with local partners Apollo Sunguard, Brilliant Harvest, Eco-Smart, FPL, Gettel Nissan, Region Solar and Sunset Auto Group.

“It means a lot to Mote Marine Laboratory to host this stellar event once again — the Lab has worked hard to implement sustainable technology and practices, such as the electric vehicle charger at our public Aquarium, the arrays of solar panels on our buildings and the water-recycling technology we’ve used for years in fish farming research,” said event Co-Chair Mould. “As a nonprofit, Mote has depended a lot on local support to enhance our eco-friendly practices, and we hope to give something back to this great community by hosting Electrify the Island.”

Event Co-Chair Chris Sharek, Engineering Director at NV5 and EV owner, added:

“This event showcases technology that is available here and now.  These vehicles not only provide cleaner and cheaper personal transportation, they significantly reduce our dependence on oil and its volatile price swings influenced by global events — and they are quiet and fun to drive!”

Here are a few reasons to get amped up about electric vehicles, according to the National Drive Electric Week web site:

  • Electric vehicles are smooth and quiet, and their high torque – even at low speeds – provides instant accelerator response and better performance in snow.
  • Driving on electricity is about five times cheaper than fueling with gasoline and maintenance for EVs costs much less than for gas vehicles.
  • Electric and hybrid vehicles are creating thousands of American jobs. Advanced technology vehicles and components are being built in at least 20 states.
  • The cars and light trucks on the road today account for about 20 percent of US carbon dioxide emissions, while all-electric vehicles have no tail pipe emissions. Even accounting for the electricity produced to charge EVs, these vehicles on average emit significantly less carbon dioxide than conventional vehicles.
  • As we clean up the electric grid even more, including more renewable energy sources such as solar and wind, EV use will get even cleaner over time.
  • Less carbon dioxide is beneficial for planet Earth – especially for our oceans. Recent increases in manmade carbon dioxide are driving climate change and ocean acidification that pose a major threat to coral reefs – the rainforests of the sea.


Electrify the Island: If You Go

  • Event timing: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 20.

  • Location: Event takes place on the grounds of Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium, 1600 Ken Thompson Parkway on City Island, Sarasota.

  • Mote discount: Event attendees will receive discount admission to Mote Aquarium on Sept. 20 only: $10 for adults, $9 for seniors (65 and older) and $5 for kids (ages 4-12). Age 3 and younger free. Coupons will be available at the event. Coupon must be presented during on-site ticket purchase on Sept. 20. Coupons cannot be used for online ticket purchases, for a refund after your purchase or in combination with any other offer. Mote admission not required to attend Electrify the Island.

  • More information about National Drive Electric Week: Visit To locate this year’s event at Mote, search “Sarasota.”