26th Annual Nevada Day Classic for Guide Dogs for the Blind Oct. 31 in Carson City | NevadaAppeal.com
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26th Annual Nevada Day Classic for Guide Dogs for the Blind Oct. 31 in Carson City

Special to the Nevada Appeal

The 26th Annual Nevada Day Classic to Benefit Guide Dogs for the Blind starts at 8 a.m. Oct. 31 and takes runners and walkers through an 8K or two-mile course in downtown Carson City.

An annual event since 1989, The Nevada Day Classic, presented by the Tahoe Mountain Milers, brings together more than 400 runners and walkers of all shapes and sizes who hit the streets on the historic west side of Carson City on the morning of Halloween. The race immediately precedes the Nevada Day Parade celebrating Nevada’s entry into the Union. Race participants are invited to wear costumes.

Nevada Guide Dog Puppies in Training will serve as course marshals. Families and groups can participate in the walk, enjoy the race breakfast and the Nevada Day Parade that immediately follows the Classic. The Breakfast Speaker will be Reno local Carol Leamy, who lost her vision in 1995 due to misdiagnosed glaucoma. She trained at Guide Dogs for the Blind at its San Rafael, Calif., campus, where she was paired with Freya, her first guide dog companion. She’s currently teamed with her third guide dog, Macaroon, who’s accompanying her to the event.

Each of Carol’s special dogs represents an investment of $75,000 by Guide Dogs for the Blind and its supporters. She has been an advocate and speaker for Guide Dogs for the Blind through Northern Nevada and California since 1997. She lectures at elementary schools, children’s clubs and local civic organizations. This is her way to give back for all she has received after transitioning from her sighted world.

The 26th Classic is organized in partnership with the Carson City Guide Dog Club and all net proceeds are going to be donated to Guide Dogs For The Blind, and to the Carson Club. As one of the premier guide dog training organizations in the world GDB is a nonprofit, contributor-supported organization who provides blind and visually impaired individuals with professionally trained Guide Dogs to use as mobility assistants. GDB was founded in 1942 to serve returning World War II veterans who lost their sight during the war. The organization now serves blind and visually impaired persons throughout the U.S. and Canada.

Guide Dog puppies are raised by volunteers who love, nurture and socialize them as the puppies grow and mature until they are ready to enter into formal training at Guide Dogs for the Blind and become a guide dog.

“Many people ask how we can stand to give our puppies up after we raise them. I tell them that it is difficult. We get attached to our puppies and we love them, but the most genuine and sincere thank yous I have ever received have come from the men and women who received my puppies as guide dogs,” says long-time puppy raiser, Kelsey Mammen.

Registration for the race is open at http://www.nevadadayclassic.org.