Columbia Lighthouse for the blind brought together volunteers, advocates, clients, and even celebrities for a night filled with great food and fun activities as you can see in this video. With freshly made crab cakes and entertainment like Mario Bonds, the night was sure to succeed.
The event kicked off with a golf clinic for visually impaired participants taught by blind golf professionals Phil Blackwell and Bruce Hooper. Both men, who have had first-hand experience overcoming the challenges of vision loss, used their experiences to help inspire everyone at the event.
Phil and his wife Cybil, who travel the country golfing, were having a great time sharing stories, tips, and laughs with many of the other attendees. Even after someone stole their bingo cards, their upbeat and positive attitudes never faded. Phil told us that being able to meet all these great people was something that he really enjoys about what he does.
After the clinic, everyone gathered in the dining room to enjoy a fabulous meal prepared by the Woodmont Country Club. During dinner, Mario Bonds, from NBC Universal’s hit show the Glee Project, rocked the stage and entertained everyone with his incredible voice. Mario also helped demonstrate that being blind does not prevent you from pursing your goals. Though challenges may arise, with the right attitude, nothing can hold you back.
Participants of the golf tournament, like Guillermo Garcia, endured their own challenges while having to play nine holes in various levels of darkness. According to Guillermo, “Every hole became more and more challenging and we had to rely more on our other senses.” However these challenges became worth it to Guillermo because even though they “experienced a gradual loss of sight” it gave them new perspective of what it was not being able to rely on your sight. It became evident to Guillermo that “the manner in which our bodies adapt to our environment is amazing” and that no matter what, we can always overcome our challenges.
Shot in the Dark not only gave everyone in the CLB community a chance to come together and support our cause, but it gave people a better appreciation understanding of vision loss and how it can be overcome.