Two E85 promotions target RNC attendees

By Erin Voegele | August 04, 2008
Web exclusive posted Sept. 4, 2008 at 5:17 p.m. CST

Twin Cities area Freedom Valu Centers and a Holiday Stationstore in Eagan, Minn., held E85 promotions during the Republican National Convention.

For two hours on Sept. 3 the Holiday Stationstore at 2660 Eagan Woods Drive in Eagan reduced the price of E85 by $1. The promotion was timed to occur during the RNC and to provide fuel for the fleet of flexible-fuel vehicles General Motors Corp. has made available to RNC officials and guests.

The event also celebrated the success of Minnesota's E85 and biodiesel infrastructure development program that provides state grants to stations that install an E85 or biodiesel pump. The Eagan Holiday Stationstore recently installed an E85 pump through the grant program.

The event was organized by Holiday, Dakota Rice/Corn and Soybean Growers, Minnesota Corn Growers Association, National Ethanol Vehicle Coalition, General Motors, U.S. DOE-Clean Cities, American Lung Association of Minnesota and the Minnesota Clean Air Choice Team.

According to American Lung Association of Minnesota spokesperson Robert Moffitt, the event was well received, starting early and ending late. Although the exact number of E85 gallons sold was not available at press time, Moffitt said that during similar events the sales of E85 have often doubled during the promotional time period.

In addition to supporting Holiday Stationstore's E85 promotion, the Minnesota Clean Air Choice Team is promoting E85 to RNC visitors though television ads, billboards and skyway posters.

In a separate promotional event, ten Twin Cities area Freedom Valu Centers offered Brookings, S.D.-based VeraSun Energy Corp.'s VE85 brand of E85 fuel for $1.85 per gallon on Sept. 4 from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. According to Darren Forbes, vice president of Freedom Value Centers, the company has done E85 promotions at individual stations in the past, but this is the first time the company has sponsored such a widespread event.