News of the Day


by Craig Altschul

Maybe General Motors should hire Matt Ouellette, 9, of Weybridge, as a consultant. Matt found an old lawnmower in his grandfather’s barn last year and thought he could convert it into a solar car, according to the Addison County Independent. Matt turned to his dad, Dean, for some help. Seems dad Dean was more than qualified as he has a side business that helps homeowners tap into renewable energy. Thus began their hunt for salvaged parts, solar panels (removed from the Ouellette’s own home each time the car is started), and a DC motor. It’s been a learning experience from both Matt and Dean. The car can go forward, backward, and stop. Matt showed off his completed car to his classmates at Weybridge Elementary School, who were very impressed. Matt occasionally takes it for a spin around his family’s backyard. He just has to remember to return the borrowed family home solar panels.

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About Craig Altschul

Craig Altschul is Editorial Director of He is a veteran snow journalist, having covered the sport for more than 40 years. His syndicated snow sports humor column, Ski Tips, ran in newspapers across the country for 20 years. He was Global Editor-in-Chief for OnTheSnow for 12 years and has written for a variety of magazines and newspapers. Altschul is past president of both the Eastern Ski Writers Association and the North American Snow Journalists Association.

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