President’s Message

Bill Bailey ASOB President

Presidents Message

As your new 2021-2022 President I, like all of you, are hoping the Covid thing is behind us and we can go back to life as close to normal as possible. The Ladder of Smiles did better than expected this last year because Units knew even in bad times the Children are our main reason for being Shriners. I have a modest good of 45,000 for my year and know it only takes a hundred dollar a member to reach that goal.

What we need back in the shrine and the OB is fun. Somewhere along the line some of us got old, now I am not saying everyone but you know who you are and should step up and be proud we have lived this long. A number of our good friends haven’t been so lucky. What we need to try to do is look back when we were more active and try to get that feeling back. People go where they can have a good time and many is the time I and most of you have been sitting around talking the ole times and the fun we had back then. We can’t party like we did in our 20’s for sure but for an hour or two we should be almost as good as we were.

In order for the sweetest music this side of heaven to continue we need of course new members. Look around you again with fresh eyes and see who might make a good bandsman. Check in with your son and your grandson and see if a legacy member is right for you. Call that member who hasn’t been around in a few years and see if you can get him back.

I like the Jamboree format and have enjoyed going these last few years. Let me say this next years will be different. You will be playing music pretty much every day. You will be playing to a large group of people besides our wives and girlfriends. Come to Wichita KS in May and have something to talk about again.

If you have any suggestion on how to make it better my personal email is I am proud to be a Shriner and do the work we do.

Bill Bailey


Greetings from Richard “Bear” Sobek, ASOB President 2020-21


A healthy oriental band community for the benefit of Shriners Hospitals for children.

The ASOB Mission:
To provide the tools for fun, music, recruitment, and Ladder of Smiles fundraising for the oriental band community.

Greetings Band-Brothers:

It is now 2020-2021, the year of the Bear, and I am proud to have spent last year not only as a Member of the Abdallah Oriental Band but as an officer of the ASOB.  Now is the time to reflect on how to communicate the importance of the ASOB to the Shrine organization.  I am totally aware of what needs to be done.  Specifically, the ASOB philanthrope called the Ladder of Smiles will remain at the forefront of our fundraising.  Fundraising is essential for the continued success of Shriners Hospitals for Children.  I plan to focus the attention of the Elected Line Officers on increasing membership.  Additionally, a big welcome to our Regional Association Ambassadors as they are the key link between our membership and the ASOB.  As to fun, I am planning on having an exciting ASOB Jamboree in Kansas City at the end of May 2021.  Throughout the year the leadership team will be traveling to the various ASOB Associations to spread fun, and support at mid-winter and annual meetings.  Please know that as your President I want to get out the gorilla glue and patch the holes, so the value of the ASOB is known throughout the land.

I realize that the current epidemic environment is understandably hard on all, and particularly on your Temple as it remains temporarily closed thus leaving a gap in sharing.  Here at Abdallah, we have started Zoom stated meetings. Our OB also has rebounded and had our first meeting last Thursday evening.  Sadly, the Music Director (me) could not attend. I have been attending to my Lady following her surgery.

Enough about me. I am here to support your Band in every way possible.  Let us all join and make what started MANY years ago to elevate all Shrine Oriental Bands to be the pride of each Shrine Center.

I am always available and will answer any question or offer any help that I am able to.  I will rely on my predecessors to help this organization renew and prosper for the future.

From the flatlands of the central states (ASOBCS), I remain,

Richard “Bear” Sobek
President, ASOB
Music Director, Abdallah Oriental Band

President Report – August 2019

What a whirlwind of a summer it has been. I hope all is well with each one of you and you are out enjoying the weather, vacations and parade season.

This edition of the Na Khabar was not planned on my agenda, but when I started to think about the info that we always write about in our September/October issue of our magazine, it always covers Imperial or the Jamboree. That is a long time to wait before our members get to hear about what transpired at our annual gathering. Now that we don’t have the constraints of layout, publishing and then mailing why wait so long? So this “Special Jamboree Edition” was born. I hope it meets with everyone’s approval.

As I have said, this has been a busy summer for me. My trip to Nashville for Imperial and the ASOB Jamboree, managing updates on the website, laying out this edition of the Na Kahbar, shoring up arrangements for our executive planning session in September and the list goes on. Oh, yes I even managed to sneak in a parade with my band!

If all that was not enough, my wife, Timmie-Lynn and I decided to adopt two wonderful but feisty children of the four-legged variety. Both are rescues that are estimated at approximately a year old. The brindle little girl is Mia and the darker one is little boy Gilley.







Speaking of children, as Shriners and especially of bandsmen, we have adopted many children that need the specialty care that our Shriners Hospitals for Children provide. That is a very expensive endeavor and we have dedicated ourselves as ASOB bandsmen to collect money each year to help offset those cost so our hospitals may continue their commitment to helping our children. Please continue to fundraise with enthusiasm, for truely we do support the “World’s Greatest Philanthropy”.  As promised, to help you with some fundraising ideas, you will find the first suggestion in the “Ladder of Smiles” section below. Let’s commit to meeting that goal of 100% participation from each band this year. This can happen if we choose to work together.

I would like to leave you with a challenge and a reminder. Several disagreements that I have either heard of or witnessed as of late has given me a reason for concern. It is not the disagreements themselves that give me pause but the way they have been addressed. The majority of them had nothing to do with Oriental Band except that we are all brothers and Master Masons. As such, we are taught that we all meet on the level. I think we all tend to forget that lesson at times in our passion to do what we believe is right. In a world that is so very polarized at times, we need our masonic brotherhood to be as strong as it has ever been. As bandsmen, we need to set the standard and be the light, show by our example, how to treat our brothers especially in times of disagreement. So the challenge is to give all of your brothers the benefit and courtesy that you would expect for yourself. The reminder… is to remember from whence we came.

Until next time,

Es Salam Alaikum, my brothers!

Darren DeHass P.P.

Jamboree 2019 – A talk with Megan

We had a visit from Megan Johnson, an amazing young woman, and former Shriners Hospital Patient and Ambassador. She continues to be an advocate for our hospitals and Shrine Oriental Bands. Megan has some amazing accomplishments from writing books to fundraising. I will let her talk for herself through the video, so click on play and watch for yourself. I did reach out to her to make sure she didn’t mind us posting this video and she told me she would be honored to have her impromptu talk posted to our website. Thank you again, Megan!


Our last band of the competition was up. Talking about showing some heart and bravery! Competing with only two bandsmen was Akdar Oriental Band hailing from Tulsa Oklahoma. They may have been the smallest band in the land, but they rated very highly with the audience in attendance. It really goes to show, that if you want to perform, then there is nothing that should prevent you from doing just that.

Jamboree 2019 Competition – Melha

Our four-person band, Melha from Springfield Massachusetts gave it a go. Unfortunately, we had some technical difficulties and the first part of their performance was unusable. I did manage to salvage the end as they played the competition song. What you won’t see is they had some technical difficulties with one of their horns but never stopped. Perseverance and no quit attitude, way to go gentlemen!


Next up was Al Kader (these are being posted in the order of their performance) out of Wilsonville, Oregon (Portland). This band stepped up to the Unlimited category so they would be able to compete head to head with Khiva. They are a pretty large band as well. Way to go guys! The competition was on.

Jamboree 2019 Competition – Khiva

I have split up each band into a separate post this year. What a competition, all of the bands did a wonderful job. If you missed Nashville, well all I can say is “you missed out”! We will start out the videos with the Khiva Oriental Band – the powerhouse from Amarillo Texas. Are there any Oriental Bands in Shrinedom that have more members?

Visit to the Central States

Just now recovering from that long drive from Houston to Branson, MO to attend the CSSA convention. ASOB was well represented with myself, Dave McCarthy, Mike Hartup, Richard Sobeck, and Bill Bailey. The Oriental Band competition had eight bands plus two Shrine Centers combining to form a band. The planned Bally Hoo was canceled because of rain but managed to get enough to put on a show Thursday night. Friday was competition and Friday morning the CSAOB had a breakfast and that night had a dinner at the Branson Masonic Lodge for all the Oriental bands. The parade through downtown Branson was held Saturday morning and all the units who competed in their respective classes participated (Clowns. Patrols, Motor Corps, etc.). Left for home early Sunday morning and arrived completely wiped out Sunday night.

I’m putting the finishing touches on the ASOB mid-winter to be held at the Houston Marriott South Hotel October 12, 13. Planning to have a great weekend. We have a lot to discuss.

We have a new Ambassador for the Northeast region. He is Chris Parker form Mehla Shrine. Looking forward to working with Chris.

Ambassadors, PLEASE get articles to Darren about your regions. Everyone would be interested in what is going on in your region.

Don’t forget the LADDER OF SMILES. We have a goal of $70,000 to meet…