August has proven to be another month this summer that has been extremely busy for everyone! And the year is going by way too quickly! Between parades and weddings, golf outings and unit get-togethers and picnics, the Nobles of El Riad Shrine have not let any weeds grow under their feet!

August always includes Midwest Shrine Association, and this year it was held in Deadwood. Thankfully, this was a much shorter distance than in previous years and many more Shriners and their units were able to attend and compete! Since this article was due prior to MSA actually happening, I will include many more details in next month’s Cactus article. But be assured that everyone had a great time and represented El Riad very well! I want to thank all of the Nobles and their Ladies who made the trek to Deadwood and participated in the events there. 

Lady Marla and I also want to thank everyone who came to the Pote’s “Carnival” Party on August 25! We are confident that all who went enjoyed themselves, and perhaps even made the evening a “hit” when they had the chance! No one can say that we in El Riad don’t know how to have a great time! We also want to give a special thanks to the committee chaired by Chief Rabban John and Lady Ralynn Whitelock, and included the following Nobles and their Ladies: John and Bobbi Schuety, Scott and Rhonda Denney, Les and Gloria Kruse, Norm and Kelly Drake, Al and Du Zahn, Brian and Jill Schultz, and Rod and Lori Larson. We also want to let the Culinary Unit know that the meal they provided was another big “hit” of the evening and everyone enjoyed it! The Crabgrass Crew provided a wonderful mix of music and laughs as they entertained us with their repertoire of songs and chuckles! We appreciate that you were able to join us as we honored our Nobles and Ladies who support El Riad! 

The Membership Team continues to sponsor the rush parties every third Wednesday of each month. Please remember that we are all working towards an aggressive goal to add 50 more nobles yet this year! If everyone tries to bring in just one man they can support, El Riad can easily reach this goal and reap the benefits that only a Shriner can enjoy — the steps of a Shrine patient wearing his/her first prosthesis, the smiles of a Shrine child after cleft lip and palate surgery, the spinal cord injury surgery/rehabilitation, and the most significant advancement in treatment of burn care! It is truly humbling, yet gratifying, to be a part of this fraternal organization! We need the names of your best friends or relatives – someone you would want to enjoy being a Shriner and a member of El Riad. Get those names to our membership team and let’s make it happen! 

El Riad hosted the Augustana Vikings football team to a dinner on August 20! This is an annual event coordinated with the annual Shrine Football game. The Culinary Unit provided a meal those guys were able to devour in minutes! And the Divan Ladies and friends served up soft drinks that quenched the thirst that those young football players had developed after a long practice on a hot day! I must say, the team and their coaches were very appreciative of our efforts! We heard “Thank you!” and “This is awesome!” many times during the evening! They were certainly an impressive group of young men! 

There are a few important upcoming events that I also want to mention. Let’s show up in great numbers to show our support! 

The 16th Annual El Riad Shrine Cup will be held on Thursday, September 6, at Willow Run Golf Course!

 The 47th Annual Shrine Football Game will be held on Saturday, September 8; at Kirkeby-Over Stadium on the Augustana campus. The lineup will be Augustana Vikings vs. Minnesota State Mavericks!

The Free Screening Clinic for children with Bone, Muscle, or Joint Problems will be held on Saturday, September 22, at the Orthopedic Institute! 

In closing I would to once again thank the Nobles of El Riad for their timeless efforts to keep us the best Shrine Temple in the system. 

In closing, remember to HAVE FUN and KEEP INSPIRING someone every day! 


Maury “Big Moe” Richard
2018 Potentate, El Riad Shrine

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