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Acupuncturist donating First Friday proceeds to non-profits

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Thompson Divide Coalition, Advocate Safehouse and Family Resource Center

John Colson

Sopris Sun Correspondent

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With 13 years of service to Roaring Fork Valley patients under his belt, first in Basalt and then in Carbondale, acupuncturist and herbal medicine specialist David Teitler believes he knows his community and how to give back to it in gratitude for his patients’ support.

This week, for the second time since setting up practice six years ago at 54 Weant Blvd., across from Sopris Park, Teitler on Friday will be using his Carbondale Acupuncture Center business to raise money for local causes — specifically, for the Thompson Divide Coalition, Advocate Safehouse Project, and the Roaring Fork Family Resource Center.

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All day on Friday, Teitler, 50, and his office mates will provide visiting patients a variety of acupuncture, massage therapy, spiritual and emotional healing and nutritional counseling, and turn the proceeds of those visits over to whichever of the three receiving organizations is designated by a particular patient.

The last time Teitler did this, he told The Sopris Sun in a recent interview, was in 2008, and that fund-raising event was called the “Obama Rub-A-Rama,” in honor of then-candidate Barack Obama’s try for the office of president of the U.S.A.

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The roughly $3,000 raised at that time, he said, was handed to the local Obama campaign office.

“That’s the goal for this one, as well,” he added, explaining that he hopes to raise at least $3,000 for the three recipient organizations.

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Patients will be seen by Teitler or one of his associates — massage therapists Pixie Byrne or Bill Laemmel, spiritual healer Jess Jacobson or nutritionist Heather Pratt — in the office, primarily, though Teitler said there could be other options.

“If it’s nice outside, we’ll probably set up a massage chair and acupuncture table in the shaded area out back,” he explained.

He has been accepting appointments for the day’s treatments already, but said he expects there will be plenty of slots in the day’s schedule for last-minute appointments or drop-ins.

“I think we’ll fill up all the available spaces,” he predicted with a smile.

The schedule is to begin with a “singing bowls” meditation from 7 a.m. to 8 a.m., followed by treatments by the five practitioners from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and an open house with food and wine from 5-8 p.m.

The proceeds from all three phases will be donated to one of the causes, he pledged.

Gift certificates are available for new patients, Teitler added, and the entire proceeds from the sale of certificates also will be donated to one of the three recipients.

Thompson Divide Coalition is a non-profit group, based in Carbondale, that has been fighting for five years against efforts by oil and gas companies to drill for natural gas in the Thompson Divide region, which comprises some 220,000 acres of relatively undeveloped land to the southwest of Carbondale.

Advocate Safehouse Project, founded in 1987 in Glenwood Springs, offers services and safe harbor for survivors of domestic violence in the region.

The Roaring Fork Family Resource Center, with its central office in Carbondale, was founded in Basalt in 1995, opened in the Basalt schools in 1995 “in response to an increase in student health and wellness needs,” according to a statement on the organization’s website.

Teitler was trained in a three-year program at the Colorado School of Traditional Chinese Medicine in Denver, and in late 2013 traveled to Kunming, China, in the Yuan Province, for two weeks of additional training and observation at the hospital there.

He can be reached at the Carbondale Acupuncture Center, 704-1310.

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