AIDB holds 19th annual shopping event at Parkway Place for the hearing and visually impaired

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. -- It's easy for many of us to take what seems to be the simple task of christmas shopping for granted. For others, checking items off those Christmas lists can be a bit more of a challenge.

Christmas shopping is tough enough already, but for the blind and visually impaired there are added challenges.

"We have some people here who have guide dogs, and of course that's always going to draw attention. People are always looking, and always resisting petting the working dog, which is good, we want people to do that," says Isaac Beavers, Regional Director of the Alabama Institute for Deaf and Blind.

The Alabama Institute for the Deaf and Blind held it's annual Christmas shopping party at the Parkway Place Mall on Friday.

The event is helpful because many of the shoppers' usual helpers are the ones they are buying gifts for. "It's an opportunity for people who are blind and visually impaired to get a chance to do some Christmas shopping without having their loved ones present," Beavers explained.

Volunteers are sighted guides and help the shoppers get from store to store, they also help as shopping assistants. "Helping them determine visual aspects of shopping. Such as price, color, size things of that nature," said Beavers.

The shopping day is also a social event. The group ended the day with a big holiday lunch. This is the 19th year of the event and the 11th year at Parkway Place.