The rain early Friday didn’t stop Frederick county leaders from unveiling Middletown’s first solar array, which spreads across six acres of land near Remsberg Park.

“We’re getting a clean energy source, number one, and number two, most importantly for us, it’s providing us with over $50,000 in savings in our water and sewer budget,” said Middletown Burgess John Miller.

The solar array will supplement electricity being used at the water treatment facility in Middletown.

“The town will save money on it’s utility bills by buying power from WGL energy from solar produced by the array, rather than it’s typical utility, and that’s a discounted fixed rate over 20 years ,” said Sol System’s Associate Thomas Larson.

Renewable energy experts said electric energy is driven by natural gas prices, and even though gas prices are low right now, they are expecting them to increase within the next few years.

“The forward prices of natural gas are expecting to double over the next five years, so the saving benefit for the town of Middletown will really come in to play as the price for natural gas goes up,” said Jim Kurtz, president RER Energy Group.

Miller said he hopes this new solar array will encourage surrounding municipalities to do the same, especially those looking to save money in their budget

The launch of the new solar array kicks off Middletown’s weekend dedicated to sustainability and renewable energy.

This coming Saturday, April 23, they plan to have their first Green Expo from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at Memorial Park.