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Pups and Supporters Enjoy Guiding Eyes Fundraiser

YORKTOWN, N.Y. — Sunday was a mixture of ear scratching, belly-rubbing and wine tasting, as Guiding Eyes for the Blind held its second annual wine tasting.

The tasting was led by sommelier Amy Dixon and her companion Elvis, a graduate of Guiding Eyes.

“They gave me a way to get back to work, to enjoy it,” Dixon said with Elvis by her side. “It’s now possible for me to work without having to worry if I’m going to get there, or how I’m going to get there.”

Dixon said the wine itself came from Italy, from an annual trip she makes, which Elvis had made possible each time.

Besides the wine tasting, participants of the event were treated to a tour of the facilities, which came with ample opportunity to pet the dogs and puppies trained by Guiding Eyes for the Blind.

Caroline Sandler, director of the Heeling Autism program, introduced those on the tour to Dottie, a guide dog who will be placed with the family of an autistic child in January as part of their newly launched program.

Jamie Viezbicke, a quality trainer, performed a demonstration with guide dog, Booker, about the ways the dogs are trained at the facility to give an inside look at all that goes on within the facility.

Michelle Brier, the events and marketing manager, noted that the event was not only a fundraiser for the organization itself but also showed first-hand the possibilities with a guide dog.

“We’re always too impressed, and it’s always so nice to see our own graduates come back, so that we can see what they’re doing,” Brier said. “Amy and Elvis are really great in showing us what can be possible with one of the guide dogs.”

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