This unit meets every Thursday at 7:00 p.m.
In 1930, Charles Anderson and Jack Olson started promoting the formation of an Oriental Band in El Riad Temple. The Oriental Band was organized in 1932, making it the fourth oldest unit in the Temple. The “street beat” that the Oriental Band has been and is still famous for was originated by Director Arthur Rock and is used only by the El Riad Unit.
Their colorful uniforms, along with the many different musical instruments they play, make for an attention-getting combination. Over the years the band has participated in numerous Imperial Session parades and competitions including:
- Minneapolis (1968)
- San Francisco (1966)
- Dallas (1972)
- Toronto (1975)
- Denver (1983,1994 and 2011)
- Chicago (1990)
- St Louis (1997 and 2008)
- Las Vegas (2001)
- Los Angeles (2007)
- Indianapolis (2014)
The band always participates in the temple ceremonial, the Midwest Shrine Association session, and many local and area parades. The band has won many first place awards in both the Oriental Band competition and parade competition, giving El Riad much recognition. The band is well known for their Spring Fling Dance and Halloween Dance fundraising at the shrine.
The Oriental Band has a vibrant energetic membership composed of active and inactive members. If you find yourself in the vicinity on a Thursday night, you are all welcome to visit with us and participate in our celebration of music. Contact any member or the Temple Office, at 336-1117, if you are interested in joining the Oriental Band.
Learn more at OrientalBand.com.
President Joseph Alick (Elizabeth)
Vice President Dan Altenburg
Member At Large Hans Christensen (Trish)
Secretary/Treasurer Steve Veenhof
Scribe Lee Lewis (Kari)
Raja Monty Derousseau (Connie)