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Free electric vehicle event set for July 5

Newer, older and one-of-a-kind electric vehicles will be on display at Pioneer Courthouse Square for EV Celebration 2014, commonly called EV Fest.

The free event is being organized by the Oregon Electric Vehicle Association from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, July 5. it will feature new EVs from such manufacturers as Nissan, as well as custom vehicles owned by some of the association's members.

The event, which is intended to raise awareness of the benefits of EVs, is happening as Oregon and seven other states have agreed to offer non-monetary incentives to encourage more people to drive EVs. The incentives could include such things as preferred parking for EVs and access to car lanes. The other states are California, New York, Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Vermont.

Although still only a small fraction of all vehicle sales, public interest in EVs is growing rapidly. Including hybrids, the sale of EVs has grown 500 percent since 2012.