A team of blind and visually impaired Vancouver dragon boaters are hosting a dinner event on Saturday night that will give new meaning to the term “blind date.”

Members of Eye Of The Dragon are hosting the city’s first dark dining dinner experience at the Moose Down Under restaurant on West Pender Street.

Diners at the fundraising event will be blindfolded and will spend the evening — except for bathroom breaks — without their eyesight.

Dan Hebert, the team’s coach, said he tried eating with his eyes closed on Sunday night, and it was harder than he thought.

“It took me longer because I was hunting and pecking all over my plate,” Hebert said. “But I did notice the texture a lot more ... Because my eyes were closed, that’s where my attention went.”

By not being able to see the dishes, people’s other senses — including taste — will be heightened.

Some of the blind people will be offering tips on how to navigate the meal without sight, like using a clock pattern to remember where food is on the plate.

The restaurant will be partially lit so servers can see where they’re going, but members of the team will be helping and sharing personal stories of cooking and eating mishaps.

“One (member) was at a picnic and he thought he was squeezing ketchup on his hot dog but it was dish detergent, and he didn’t know until he bit into it,” Hebert said.

Linda Weber, a visually impaired member of the team, said the experience will give people a sense of what it’s like to be without a sense — something she lives with every day.

“We will have a mystery dish which we’re hoping will be a little bit challenging for people to eat without seeing,” she said.

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