Forrest and Jessica tied the knot in October 2017 and it wasn’t too long after saying “I do” that the newlyweds decided to embark on a new adventure together. The dream of quitting their day jobs, selling their cozy Florida home and traveling across the U.S. in a solar powered bus became a reality for the couple.
About Forrest and Jessica
Forrest and Jessica met in Orlando, Florida in 2012. Jessica was studying early childhood education at the University of Central Florida and Forrest was focusing on becoming a licensed motorcycle mechanic. After four years of dating the couple tied the knot in Hollywood Beach, FL.
Both share a love for nature and enjoy taking their three dogs, Ezio, Bane and Raisin, on hikes and canoeing.
“Forrest loves all things motorcycles and outdoors. He wouldn’t be living up to his name without being such an outdoorsman,” said Jessica.
Before becoming a solar bus owner, Jessica spent much of her free time volunteering at the local SPCA caring for dogs in need. It’s no surprise that in addition to her love for nature and animals, Jessica is also an avid DIY crafter.
Traveling across the USA was always a dream for the couple and after facing a serious medical condition, they both agreed there was no better time than now to live their dreams.
“Our world was falling apart and we wanted to do everything we could,” said Forrest.
The Solar Bus
After much research and consideration the couple was able to rule out making their travels in an RV. For one, the cost of an RV, even in used condition, was quite expensive, and secondly the look of 80’s interior design found in most RV’s was not particularly attractive to the couple. It was then that they came across the Skoolie community, school buses that have been converted into a recreational vehicle or home.
The ability to convert a school bus into a home that looks and feels exactly how they want it at an affordable cost made it an easy decision. Having the flexibility to go off grid was another important component and they knew incorporating a solar system would be crucial.
“We are always looking for fresh projects just like the solar bus to work with. When we were approached about a potential sponsorship, we knew this would be a fun and impactful partnership,” said Sam Martens, Commercial Operations Director of Mission Solar Energy.
The solar bus features six of Mission Solar Energy’s high-efficiency PERC 60 solar panels. The compact yet high-power output solar panels allow the couple to go off grid for a solid week before having to refill their water supply. The bus has the ability to generate electricity and operate on the PV solar panels and battery system alone.
Promoting Solar and Sustainable Living
Forrest and Jessica kicked off their travels in late May and made San Antonio, TX their first stop. The Mission Solar team was eager to meet them in person and get an up close look at the solar bus!
During this year’s Solar Power Texas Conference & Expo, Mission Solar Energy proudly showcased the solar bus for the first time. The couple will be exhibiting at the 2nd Annual Colorado Tiny House Festival June 22-24 at the Adams County Fairgrounds in Brighton, CO. They will be making their way through the West Coast and exhibiting at a variety of tiny home and sustainable living conventions and joining the Mission Solar Energy team at Solar Power International in Anaheim, CA in September.