Santa Monica will join more than 20 cities across the country in celebrating the first National Plug In Day to promote the benefits of electric vehicles Sunday, Oct. 16.

Approximately 200 electric vehicles are expected to take to the streets for a parade through downtown Santa Monica. New plug-in vehicles by GM, Nissan, Mitsubishi, Toyota, SMART, Ford, Coda and others will participate in the flagship event of National Plug In Day.

Cities across the country including Detroit, Kissimmee, FL, Washington D.C. and Honolulu will participate in other parades, with “tailpipe-free” tailgate parties, lectures, a ceremonial plugging-in and other grassroots events.

“Only a few years ago, major automakers were literally crushing electric cars. Today, virtually every auto company in the world is selling or developing a plug-in car, and consumers are snapping up each and every one, stimulating our economy while helping the environment,” said Plug In America co-founder and Sierra Club member Paul Scott.

“You’ll see hundreds of these vehicles in National Plug In Day activities. And remember: EVs are powered by domestic electricity, so every cent we spend to run them stays in America.”

The Santa Monica event is scheduled to begin with a press conference at 9:30 a.m., followed by the parade at 10 a.m. at Main Street and Pico Boulevard.

Director Chris Paine, whose film “Revenge of the Electric Car” will hit theatres across the country Oct. 21, is among the confirmed speakers at the press conference preceding the parade. Santa Monica City Councilman Terry O’Day and actor/environmentalist Ed Begley are also confirmed to attend.