Second Harvest and Lighthouse Present Dining In the Dark July 16

Written By Scott Joseph On June 29, 2015


How does the dining experience change when you can’t see what you’re eating because you’re dining in darkness? I don’t mean low lighting meant to inspire romance like you’d find in a fancy restaurant, the sort of place where you try to use the little candle on the table to read the menu.

I’m talking no candle, no light whatsoever. Total darkness. What would dinner be like when you can’t see what’s on the plate?

You can find out when Second Harvest Food Bank and Lighthouse Central Florida host Dining in the Dark on Thursday, July 16, from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. at the Second Harvest facility, 411 Mercy Drive, Orlando. Tickets are $125 per person and proceeds benefit the two charities.

Now you have to understand that Dining in the Dark means that the entire room will be plunged into total darkness — there will be no blindfolds that can be raised for peeking. You’ll have to use your senses of smell and touch — hearing, too — to figure out just what you’re eating (no one will tell you what it is until after the dinner). Conventional eating utensils can’t be used because you can’t see anything to put a fork in or cut with a knife (please, no knives!). And there won’t likely be stemware that can be tupped over easily.

How then, you’re probably wondering, does the food get served if even the waiters are working in darkness? Dining in the Dark has that covered. Guest servers for the evening will be members of the Orlando Police Department’s SWAT Team, who are trained in the use of night-vision goggles. (I can’t attest to their training as servers, but I’m guessing the plates will be placed precisely where they aim them.)

I have experienced an evening of dining in pitch black surroundings. It’s an interesting experience, and even with my background in food and dining, I was only able to guess what I was eating about 50 percent of the time.

It’s a fun experience, but it also brings awareness to what people with vision loss experience. Lighthouse of Central Florida helps people live with vision loss.

For tickets, visit

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