Sunday, September 20, is a special fundraiser in downtown Waynesboro where participants eat blindfolded and begin to understand the challenges of eating without sight.  It is the third annual “Dining in the Dark.” The charity event is a benefit for Curing Retinal Blindness Foundation and is also a Dininig in Darkway for sighted-participants to experience the impact of vision—from how to locate food to how not seeing food before eating removes visual clues on texture and flavor.

The evening begins at 3 PM with a social hour on the patio of Christine’s Café, seating is at 4 PM, and dining begins at 4:30 PM. Door prizes, a raffle and silent auction are included, also.

Participants wear blindfolds as they eat a three course meal at Christine’s Cafe and Gourmet Coffee. Tickets are $70 and include an event tee-shirt, dinner, wine samples, and after-party with Lucky Punk, a tri-state favorite with members from Waynesboro PA and Hagerstown MD. Proceeds from the sale of the $70 tickets benefit the Curing Retinal Blindness Foundation. Tickets can be purchased online at Eventbrite.

Melissa Russ, organizer of the event and a mother of a daughter affected by blindness, says the money raised for Curing Retinal Blindness Foundation goes directly to research for a cure. The Curing Retinal Blindness Foundation serves blind or visually impaired with mutations in the CRB1 gene, including Leber’s Congenital Amaurosis, Retinitis Pigmentosa, or cone-rod dystrophy. The research also contributes to understanding and supporting other forms of blindness, such as age-related macular degeneration ot diabetic retinopathy.

The owners of Christine’s Café, Sheree & Scott Green, are preparing a flavorful menu and one to help make diners more aware of their senses. The menu is a mystery until after the dinner is finished, but diners select a chicken entrée, beef entrée, or seafood entre when signing up for the event. The Greens promise to stick to entrees ordinarily found as menu items. Regardless of entrée, blindfolded dining expands the sense of taste, touch, sound, and smell. After dessert, when the blindfolds are removed, diners will discuss their experiences.