The Phoenix Rises at the Solar Living Center!

A new bright and exciting era is upon us at the Solar Living Center in the Spring of 2019.  Real Goods began 41 years ago in 1978 as the back-to-the-land movement blossomed in Mendocino County and the Solar Living Institute (SLI) began 27 years ago as we taught our first classes in solar and off-the-grid living. We built the Solar Living Center (EcoTerra) back in 1993-95 and it has developed into a world-class destination center and has established itself as the #1 tourist destination between San Francisco and Oregon, hosting over 4 million visitors and nearly 300,000 in 2018 alone.

We have been looking for a like-minded entity to continue our vision and mission at the Solar Living Center (EcoTerra) for a couple of years now, and we’re pleased to announce that we’ve found that perfect partner to whom we are passing the baton: Flow Kana (

Flow Kana is much more than a cannabis company. They share our vision for Regenerative Agriculture, Farm to Table Organics, Biodynamic Farming and Gardening, Renewable Energy, Sustainable Living, Energy Efficiency, Serious Mitigation of Climate Change, and Healthy Living. They have committed to bringing the Solar Living Center to ‘world-class’ status. Ideas include a vastly expanded and beautified landscape, rejuvenation of our bicycle generators, the establishment of a museum featuring the origins of Cannabis from its discovery in pre-biblical times, through prohibition to its current iteration, the origins of the solar movement in Northern California (Real Goods sold the first PV module in the world in 1978), the synergies between solar and cannabis, the origins of the ‘back-to-the-land’ movement, the beginnings of the organic movement and how sustainability took hold here in the ‘Emerald Triangle’ over the last 50 years.

Other plans call for the establishment of a great café with commercial kitchen, completion of our new Hemp House and Mushroom House, improved interpretive and directional signage on site, and many other very exciting projects allowing the site to become what we’ve always wanted, but for which we have lacked the resources.

In addition to site improvements, we are very excited that Flow Kana is also totally behind the Solar Living Institute and has committed to helping us grow by contributing resources, strategic input, and new board members. We will continue forward in our tradition of providing inspirational environmental education with PV classes, school field trips, new workshops, and other ways for you to get inspired.

SLI is offering many new classes beginning in May with an expanded Workshop Series. Monthly classes within subjects from natural building to ancient skills to healthy living to gardening and more.

We are making this series of workshops much more accessible to the general public with a very affordable rate of $15 per hour (some classes may require an additional materials cost) and limiting these workshops from 2 to 4 hours long.

Use checkout code "sourcebook" before 4/30 to receive a free Solar Living Sourcebook when you sign up for any class happening in May!

The SLI has been a 501-c-3 nonprofit since our inception, and as you may know,  nonprofits exist solely due to the generosity of our supporters and members. We depend upon your donations and support to survive and thrive and to grow our programs and classes in an era where it is so important to increase awareness, mitigate climate change, and educate the world with inspirational environmental education.

Ways to support the Solar Living Institute:

  • Sign-up for a workshop!
  • When you visit the Solar Living Center drop $5 in the donation box as you drive in
  • Become a member of the SLI – with new rewards and offerings
  • Make a one-time donation to help support our programs, kids’ education, and class expansion
  • Make a sustaining donation where we debit your credit card monthly to minimize the impact on your budget.
  • Tell your educator friends about our tours and field trips
  • Come visit us, say hi, and contribute your ideas as to how we can better educate and serve you.
Our ever popular K-12 school field trips are currently being scheduled. We typically host up to 2,000 K-12 students every year inspiring our future environmental leaders in all aspects of sustainability from baking cookies in solar ovens and learning about a world powered by renewable energy, to learning about electric vehicles and natural building, to practices as simple as recycling and permaculture and biodynamic landscaping. We have dozens of letters from students and teachers alike expressing that their visit to our site was their favorite field trip ever. And it inspires thousands of students to think about how their decisions – good or bad – are long-lasting, and how taking action to combat climate change is vitally important to everyone’s future. We have tours and programs for all ages, K-12, and can accommodate small and large groups. Contact to schedule your own special inspirational field trip.
For the Month of May, all current members who register for a Workshop Series class receive a free buddy pass - bring a guest at no additional charge. If you'd like to take advantage of this offer, please email or call (707) 472-2456

Not a member yet? Visit our website to find out how your support can help the Solar Living Institute. Members receive monthly specials, giveaways, and other perks.
April 20th: Four Elements Festival at the Healdsburg Center for the Arts focusing on climate change and ways to reduce and reverse the impact humans are having on our planet. Come visit the SLI booth for a free smoothie, kid-friendly activities, and info about upcoming classes. Click here for more info.

April 27th: EARTH DAY UKIAH! This is a fundraising event for Walk & Bike Mendocino and Ukiah Valley Trail Group, both non-profit organizations serving Mendocino County. Come visit the SLI booth for a free smoothie, kid-friendly activities, and info about upcoming classes. Click here for more info.

June 2nd: Hopland Fire Resiliency Meeting at the University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources. Click here to register.
Meet Sean Connolly, who has greatly improved our website and brought it into present day styling as it was getting a bit tired with the ‘’90s look.” You can explore our campus, sign up for both on-site and online classes, learn about our mission and vision, and of course support the SLI with your donation or membership.
Solar Living Institute
13771 S. Hwy 101
Hopland, CA 95449
(707) 472-2456