Last-Minute Solar Gifts That Really Shine

Christmas is nearly upon us, and in all of the year-end excitement, it can be easy to lose track of time! Are you still looking for the perfect gift for your outdoorsy or eco-minded family member or friend? We have you covered, and you won’t even have to wait for shipping!

With the abundance of natural beauty and local green spaces, Southern Illinoisans love to get out and explore the wilds. Whether it be an overnight stay in one of our parks, or a day trip that unexpectedly turns into a night hike, you don’t want to be caught in the dark.

One of the absolute basics we like to have on hand is the SunJack Solar Camplight. This convenient, collapsible lantern can charge up via USB before you head out, or you can clip it to your pack and let it charge in the sun while you hike. 


One step up from a basic light is the LuminAID PackLite 2-in-1 Phone Charger. This waterproof, shatterproof, and extremely durable tool can provide about 50 hours of light on a full charge, and can also be used to charge your phone or GPS unit. Connectivity and navigation are vital for longer outings, and this charger can help keep you safe when you’re away from an outlet.

For more intensive power needs, we recommend the SunJack 14W Solar Charger. This compact unit folds down to the size of an iPad for easy storage, and opens up into a mini-array capable of charging a number of devices. It has a built-in chip to detect what kind of device it is charging so it can do so 80% faster than standard chargers, and then cut off the juice to prevent wasting any energy. Shock-proof and drop-proof, this charger is actually used by the US Military.

Solar-powered lighting isn’t just for outdoor adventures. The safety, stability, and convenience it provides can be just as beneficial at home. Frostfire makes a great series of solar LED lights that can be mounted anywhere, for example to brighten up an entryway, yard, or alley where it’s not practical to wire lighting. These lights last for years, work in any weather, and come in low-profile and modern designs. Another great application, both practical and aesthetically pleasing, is solar garden lights. We stock Anubis lights, which can be used to light up a dark path or lend some extra beauty and nighttime accessibility to your backyard oasis.

Of course nothing brightens up life like education, and we have a few favorite books that would make great additions to any library. John Schaeffer’s Solar Living Sourcebook is “The definitive resource for off-the-grid living, renewable energy, green building, homesteading, and all things sustainable.” Regularly updated for the last 36 years, it’s the go-to primer for your greener life. For business owners, Greening Your Business by Daniel Sitarz is a top-to-bottom guide to saving money, materials, and energy. Efficiency is at the heart of running a sustainable and successful business, and this book enumerates strategies for every aspect of your company.

Remember how I said you don’t even have to wait for shipping? We actually stock all of these gifts and books, and many more, in our Educational Showroom in Carterville! While you’re here, do something nice for yourself, and get a free quote for your very own solar installation, and #GetEmpowered today!

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