WASHINGTON, D.C. -- "The magnitude of the celebration is awesome," said Dr. Mark Deitch, who with his fiancee, Dr. Mimi Taitz, drove 10 hours from Atlanta to Washington, D.C., to be a part of chiropractic history.
It was indeed a grand celebration, and one for the history books. At the Washington, D.C., convention center, speakers, exhibitors, chiropractors, staff, and families (from more than 50 countries) joined together to pay homage to the past and embrace chiropractic's future.
The fourth of July festivities and fireworks exploding over the Washington Monument, provided a rousing start to the five-day chiropractic symposium. The Grand Celebration began with a colorful opening ceremony July 5th. Children of attending chiropractors marched and carried flags of the nations where chiropractic is practiced.
Chiropractic Centennial Foundation (CCF) President Dr. Bill Holmberg took center stage and the audience rose to its feet in a standing ovation. "We are making history!" he declared. "This is a historic coming together of our profession. We are privileged to be a part of it. This is the most comprehensive and distinguished symposium in our history."
Attendees and dignitaries from many different nations agreed that the celebration was a rousing success. "It's so impressive to see the thousands of chiropractors from all over the world," commented Dr. Enrique Benet Canut of Mexico City, president of the Latin American Federation of Chiropractic. "The only problem has been the fact that there's so much to choose from!" he said.
Participants had the luxury of being able to decide between more than 100 different seminars and workshops covering technique, history, research, and philosophy. Attendees heard:
- motivational speaker Stephen Covey, MBA, PhD, author of the best seller, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People;
- first-hand experiences of chiropractic practice from the chiropractic college presidents;
- seminars on philosophy. In one session, popular speaker Dr. Galen Price told his audience, "You are the only ones qualified to find and correct vertebral subluxations. Don't lose the leadership that's been given to us." Dr. Price concluded by saying he was "confident in the future of chiropractic, but that we must never forget our heritage." He received a standing ovation.
- the results of ongoing CCF efforts to preserve the profession's heritage.
Attendees served as a focus group when they previewed and provided comments on the new chiropractic documentary produced by CCF Media Committee Chairman Dr. Guy Riekeman. It was part of the final editing process. The hour-long program, hosted by Jack Perkins, traces health care's history and the emergence of chiropractic 100 years ago, not only as a force, but as a leader in the redefinition of health care.
"This program is directed solely at the health care consumer," said Dr. Riekeman. "It's time we break the television barrier and inform people that the future of health care lies in their own hands." To air the program on national television, fundraising efforts are underway to garner chiropractic support for the documentary.
Apart from celebrating chiropractic's heritage, Grand Celebration participants were treated to world-class entertainment in Washington, D.C., one of the most beautiful and historically rich cities in America. Befitting the legislative "power seat" locale of the event, the comedy/performance troupe "The Capitol Steps" amused the crowd with their witty political satire. Saturday evening's glittering gala dazzled the audience with host Alan Thicke and actor David Richards in the role of "D.D. Palmer," kicking off the exciting Pointer Sisters concert which inspired the 100-year birthday bash crowd to rise to their feet.
Many DCs who attended the Washington Grand Celebration don't want to stop celebrating chiropractic's birthday just yet, and are already making plans for Davenport's Grand Finale, September 13-17, 1995. They say they're not only excited to come home to chiropractic's birthplace, but, as we begin our second century, looking forward to chiropractors coming together to redefine health care. To register for the Centennial's Grand Finale, please call 1-800-DC4-1995.