More than 245 massage therapists from 21 states gathered in New Braunels, Texas, April 24-26, for the 4th Annual World Massage Festival.

The centerpiece of the annual festival was the induction ceremony for the Massage Therapy Hall of Fame. Inductees are chosen by the Festival’s creator, massage therapist Mike Hinkle.

“A Hall of Fame is a traditional way that many professions recognize their leaders and innovators,” Hinkle said. “I decided to organize such a body and support it with a nonpolitical, independent meeting of massage therapists.”

Twelve people were inducted this year: Jean Shea, Jenny Ray, Margie Meshew, Nathalie Cecilia, Tina Allen, Cliff Korn, John Harvey Kellogg, Tom Bowen, Peter Ling, James Cyriax, Moshe Feldenkrais and Mary McMillan.

Also recognized were the School of the Year, Lauterstein-Conway School of Massage in Austin, Texas; Teacher of the Year, William Morey, of Florida; Institute of the Year, BIOTONE; and Association of the Year, Associated Bodywork and Massage Professionals. John Malinowski received the Lifetime Achievement award.

The World Massage Festival (www.worldmassagefestival.com) provided attendees with a choice of 21 approved continuing education classes presented by six different instructors on subjects ranging from medical massage and bamboo fusion to traditional Thai massage and massage history.

More than 50 vendors showcased a variety of products and techniques. Festival sponsors provided more than $32,000 in door prizes awarded to participants via a free drawing throughout the event.

Next year’s World Massage Festival will be June 17-21, 2010 at Berea College in Berea, Kentucky.

Headline educators will be Ralph R. Stephens and James Waslaski. Paul St. John, Waslaski and Ruthie Piper Hardee will be introducing new classes at the 2010 festival. Additional instructors will include Laura Allen, Tina Allen, Brita Ostrom, Terry Norman, Eeva Vahla, Claire Marie Miller and Judith DeLany.

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