Area residents eager to learn how an atomic energy plant operates will have their chance next week.

Peach Bottom Atomic Power Station will host its annual community information night from 5 to 8 p.m. Monday in the plant's training center.

"Community information night is a great opportunity for us to meet our neighbors, explain what we do, and demonstrate how hard we work to protect our workers, our community and the environment," said Michael Massaro, site vice president.

The event is free and will illustrate how the power station uses atomic energy to power 2 million homes and businesses.

"The annual event continues to grow in popularity each year," Massaro said.

Nearly 500 participants attended the event last year, and Peach Bottom extended the length of the event this year to accommodate more visitors, he said.

Visitors will have a "rare opportunity" to tour Peach Bottom Unit 1 -- a high-temperature, historic, gas-cooled reactor, which is the first of its kind in the world, according to a company news release.

The unit was defueled and retired from service in 1974, according to the release.

Guests are asked to park in the station's outer lot at 1848 Lay Road. Buses will then transport visitors to the training center.

If special accommodations are required or for more information, contact Lacey Dean at 456-4818 or Lacey.Dean@exceloncorp.com.

-- Candy Woodall can also be reached at cwoodall@yorkdispatch.com.