Bluesman Taj Majal will play a free outdoor concert in downtown Aspen as part of this summer’s American Renewable Energy Day (AREDay) festivities.
Festival organizers announced plans for the expanded events Friday, in advance of Earth Day, which is Sunday. The ninth annual AREDay is scheduled for Aug. 18 to 20.
It will include two days of panels and speakers at the Aspen Meadows’ Doerr-Hosier Center, along with nightly film screenings, the concert and a two-day outdoor renewable energy exposition on the pedestrian malls downtown.
Founder Chip Comins said Friday that speakers will include retired Gen. Wesley Clark and retired Vice Adm. Dennis McGinn.
“We want to focus on the issue of climate change and national security,” Comins said.
Energy luminaries including Amory Lovins and Lester Brown will also be part of the lineup.
Taj Majal will play the AREDay stage, to be located on the Mill Street mall next to Wagner Park, on Sunday, Aug. 19 at 5 p.m.
AREDay vice president Ginna Kelly is also planning a unique conservation awareness project for later in the year.
Kelly, of Aspen, is climbing Tanzania’s Mount Kilimanjaro with a group of 15 women to raise awareness of conservation, species extinction and climate change.
The group includes actress Mariel Hemingway, granddaughter of Ernest Hemingway, the Nobel laureate and author of the story “The Snows of Kilimanjaro.”
“We’re going to hike up and see if the snow of Kilimanjaro still exists,” she said Friday.
The climb is scheduled for Nov. 21 to Dec. 4.
Other hikers include NASCAR driver Leilani Munter. The mission will benefit Climb for Conservation and the Mkomazi Rhino Sanctuary in Tanzania.