Model Green Home Finds New Home at Jay Heritage Center – Visitors Welcome!

The Rye Garden Club’s model green home has been “mobile” the last two years. Now it has found what everyone hopes will be a permanent home, at the Jay Heritage Center. 

Published December 19, 2011 5:04 PM
3 min read

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modelthumbThe Rye Garden Club’s model green home has been “mobile” the last two years. Now it has found what everyone hopes will be a permanent home, at the Jay Heritage Center. 

 

By Bill Lawyer

 

The Rye Garden Club’s model green home has been “mobile” the last two years. Now it has found what everyone hopes will be a permanent home, at the Jay Heritage Center.  

 

The model green home began as a construction project in a club member’s basement in the fall of 2009. The project was led by “forewomen” Kristina Bicher and Sarah Barringer, who built it from a Real Good Toys Company’s “contemporary ranch” kit. By spring 2010 the model, comprised of hundreds of small pieces, was completed and then customized to be a green home.  

 

modelGreen features included an extensive array of products and systems in the living room, bathroom, bedroom, kitchen, utility room, and even the porch. The most noticeable are the green roof, geothermal heating and cooling system, solar panels, CFL lighting, and reused and sustainable floors, fabrics, and furniture.  

 

Being a garden club, they made sure they had a vegetable garden and compost bin, as well as shade and windbreaker plantings. All of the components are detailed in a booklet that accompanies the exhibit.

 

Everything came together just in time for the Rye Garden Club’s spring show at the Jay Heritage Center  (JHC) in April 2010. The home was entered into the environmental category, as the women who converted the home from just a standard suburban house to a state-of-the-art green home were members of the club’s environmental committee.  

 

The response of visitors and the judges was overwhelming. It won a special award, and everyone said the exhibit needed to be installed somewhere public.

 

The home’s next move was to the Rye Nature Center, where it spent the summer on public display, and was used to focus on the center’s programs and themes for all ages. But with the Nature Center’s limited indoor space and the realization that the exhibit would have to be moved frequently to make room for other activities, it was “back to the basement” for the green model home.

 

This spring the exhibit was set up at the Jay Heritage Center’s Van Norden Carriage House, which serves as their visitor center. The “Home Green Home” exhibit and a companion PowerPoint slideshow were incorporated into the center’s ongoing energy education program, “Our Footprints Matter,” which is supported through a grant by Con Edison.

 

It served as a “model” for participants in the Center’s Architecture Camp, where ages 7-11 are invited to create their own sustainable homes. As JHC President Suzanne Clary said, “In addition to being seeing by literally thousands of visitors throughout the year, the Home Green Home exhibit was an inspiration to budding young architects this past August.”

 

So what’s next for the model green home? Bicher and Barringer are offering programs for all ages and can gear them to any group. “We want people to see how easy and reasonable it is to incorporate more green into our homes, lawns, and gardens,” they said.

 

The Norden Carriage House is open to the public Tuesdays through Saturdays, and there’s no charge for visiting and taking a tour of the green home on one’s own.

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