2019 Potentate’s Messages

December 2019


By the time you read this, we will have already completed our annual turkey cook, Shrine Circus,  and Harris Hoe Down, Too.  I would like to thank all that came up and helped with the turkey cook.  We had great crews that worked both weekends.  If we keep doing the turkey cook, we may figure out how to do it.  Anyway, we cooked 400 turkeys.  Thank you Kenny Lemons, for ramrodding this event. Thanks to John Austin for letting us use his trailer.

We have many great things going on at the Temple.  If you haven’t noticed, we have expanded our back porch area by adding a concrete slab to put a walk-in cooler that was donated to Maskat

After the Harris Hoe Down, we decorated for Christmas.  And we began getting ready for Foster Kid’s Christmas.  As the year winds down, I want to sincerely thank all who have been so supportive of Sheryl and me throughout this past year.  We’ve had a great year!

Let us fill the Temple at all of the remaining events and finish the year strong.  The new Divan will do a great job and continue the positive momentum.

Stay strong Maskat . . . . . we truly are the mouse that roars!

Steve Harris


November 2019


We have had a good run so far this year.  But, we aren’t finished yet.  We have three very important fundraisers coming up so that should be great fundraisers for the Temple.  We have the turkey fundraiser, the Circus, the the Harris Hoe Down, Too.  I’m hoping all three will do well.

We recently tried something a little different, by having Randy Riggle put on a comedy show. Not very many people supported that event, so we lost money.  However, it was a great show. And those of us who showed up had a great time.  Thanks to all that could be there.

Also, I would like to thank Dooby and Joanne and Don Pepper for all the hard work they put into cooking for the comic show.  The food was great.

We started off the year on a positive note, with the first Harris Hoe Down.  We had a great TSA.  Thanks to all for all of your hard work on that.  With only a few things left to finish out the year, let’s make a big showing at the three big events that are left so we can finish the year on a positive note.

I look forward to seeing each of you at these events.  Thanks for all your hard work.

Steve Harris


October 2019

Hello Nobles,

We began our Fall on a good note. We had a good crowd at our first meeting of the Fall with
65 Nobles attending. Greg Talley did a super job coordinating the first annual SCA steak
cookoff out at the land. We ended up with 34 entries, and we made a profit from this activity.
This organization runs like a well oiled machine. Those of us who helped Greg with this activity      were very impressed. And, to top it off ………. one of our very own won 1st place. Next time you see Jonathan Frerich, give him a pat on the back for a job well done.

By the time you get this, the Provost Guard Fall invitational will have already happened.
However, I’m sure I will be reporting, on my next article, that Maskat Provost Guard won first
prize in several categories. They always do a great job ….. Thanks guys and gals, for representing us well.

We will be having our Fall Ceremonial on Saturday, October 12. Please attend if you can, so we
can welcome our new members.

Bing will be having a calendar meeting for 2020 on October 16. Please get with Bing if you
want to have any input on next year’s calendar.

On October 19, we have an event at the Temple that is an important fundraiser for the Temple.
It is a comedy show given by a famous comic named Randy Riggle. He has been here before
and always looks forward to coming to our Temple. Please mark this on your calendar. It is
open to anyone …. not just Shriners. Let’s fill the house!

And finally, in November, we will have the Shrine Circus. It will be on November 17. We will
have two shows ….. 2:30 and 6:30 PM. Please come out and help with that fundraiser.

Also, in November, we will have the “Harris Hoe Down Too.” This will take the place of our
Gala. It is just like the last Harris Hoe Down, except we will have an auction ….. Iike we always
do at our Gala. If you all know of anyone that is willing to donate items for our silent auction, as
well as our live auction, please have them contact me so we can get organized.

Until next month, I’m signing off. I hope all of you continue to do well and continue to support
our cause.

Steve Harris
Potentate Maskat Temple


September 2019

Hello Nobles,

Even though we are having triple digit temperatures, believe it or not, Summer is over.  We’ve had a fast and busy Summer.  With TSA and Imperial behind us, it is time to kick off the Fall with the same positive momentum that we have built up over the last several months.  A big thank you to Jerry Sloan for pulling the Smoking Gun to Nashville.

We have a few things coming up pretty quick for Fall activities and fundraisers.  Bruce is working on a sporting clay shoot.  We have a Fall Ceremonial.  We also have Randy Riggles, a comedian, coming this Fall.  The comedian is a fundraising event that is open to anyone, so let’s fill the house.

Another fundraising event that will be upon us soon is the Gala.  However,we are not calling it a Gala because it is an informal event, and we do not want people to choose not to come due to having to dress formal.  The event will still be an auction and some giveaways.  But this year we will have live music and dancing.  We are calling it Harris Hoe Down Too. We will have the same band that we had at the first Harris Hoe Down, so get your dancing shoes on and start practicing The Stroll.

For other events and dates, check out the calendar on our website.

I hope everyone has a great Fall.  And I hope that our activities have a bunch of participation

Steve Harris


August 2019

Hello Nobles,

I just want to take time to officially thank all those that helped out on the TSA.  Everyone, nobles and ladies, did an outstanding job.  All who attended were very impressed with what we did.

Thank you very much for a job well done.  As is evidenced by the cards of thanks from all over the State, and the Imperials.

Steve Harris
Potentate 2019


June 2019

Hello Nobles,

Normally I write these articles while I look at the Shrine calendar  so that I can mention all the things that I feel need to be mentioned, while giving credit to those brothers and ladies that have stepped up to make certain things go well. But, this time, I look back on my days ….. years …. as a Divan member and remember a few things that I was told when I became the OG. I was told that the next five years will fly by faster than you can imagine. I will not repeat what Daryl told me on the night that I was elected to the Divan. However, Past Potentate Charles Dean was
correct when he said that I’ll look up one day and it will all be over. Sheryl and I realize that we
still have 6 months to go, but we feel like it will be over tomorrow. In fact, the other day, she
asked me what are we gonna do next. She said that she was gonna miss all that we have been
involved in while on the Divan. I promptly told her that the good thing would be that we do not
have to listen to Greg Stockton’s BS stories anymore. Just kidding Greg. You know that we
love ya.

Anyway, we have had so much fun, and we feel like the Temple is heading in a great direction.
We have focused on making it FUN for the family. We have brought in several new members in
the last few months. Our attendance at our events has increased in numbers , and the
strength and positivity of “The Mouse That Roars” continues to move forward.

While writing this article, we are a few short weeks out from the TSA and the Oil Bowl. I am just amazed at how a small group, like ours, can come together and, successfully, put on … not one …. but two major events ….. back to back. Absolutely incredible! It takes a special group of
people to pull that off.

While the 3rd Thursday Happy Hour has done well …. especially with the addition of bingo and
pool tables, we still have 6 months to go. We have a few more fundraisers that need everyone’s
help. And, we need to increase attendance at our Stated Meetings, as we bring in new

Speaking of membership, I was honored, as TSA State President, to be the guest speaker at
the Abilene Convention Center for the Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Texas, Grand
Master Convention. I talked about the shrine being an appendant body of Masons. I let them
know that we really value what they do in the blue lodges, and that we need them as Shriners.
They too, have membership issues. We, as Master Masons and Shriners, need to do our part
in being involved in our Blue Lodges and continue to support seek Shrine membership from

Like I’ve said before, we have to focus on having fun and being more family oriented.
I look forward to the TSA, Oil Bowl, and the rest of the year.

Stay strong my brothers,

Steve Harris
Potentate 2019


May 2019


I hope everyone is having a great month.  I am happy to report that our Maskat Golf Tourney
was a huge success.  We had over 90 players this year.  Gordy and his crew did a great job
making this a huge success.  When you see any of them, give them a pat on the back for a job
well done.

Our April Stated meeting had over 60 members in attendance, and we brought in 3 new
Shriners.  We are supposed to bring in 3 more in May.  Great job to all of you who are out there
hustling to get more members.

The annual Easter Egg Hunt was on April 20th.  Our clowns did a great job entertaining the kids
and representing our organization.  I want to thank everyone who helped move tables, chairs,
grill and everything else that it took to make it a success.  A fun time was had by all.

We recently had another Texas Shrine Association meeting in the Oasis.  Bruce and all of the committee chairmen seem to have everything on a good pace for the TSA in June.  It is hard to believe that it is just a few weeks away.

One last thing that I thought you all may be interested in knowing.  We have purchased a
point of sale register for the Oasis. This means that Shriners, guests, and rentals can now use
a credit/debit card in the Oasis.  We feel like the Oasis will be much more efficient with this
system, and that it will pay for itself in a short time period.

Once again, thanks to ALL of you for your continued support and involvement in our great fraternity.  Remember, at the end of the day …….. we are helping kids!

Steve Harris, Potentate


April 2019

Hello Nobles and Ladies,

Wow!This year is flying by.  When this article reaches you, we will have completed what I consider to have been a very successful 1st Quarter of 2019.

For the month of March, we had a great IHOP day.  A big thanks to Charles Dean and all who helped.  Other activities included a fun 3rd Thursday Happy Hour, Clown Midwinter, and Provost Guard Midwinter.

Please do not forget that as we move into April, Gordy and crew are working very hard putting together the Maskat Golf Tourney.  If you plan to play, check in at noon for a 1:00 start. The tourney is in a 4-man scramble format, and the cost is $75.00 per person.  As always, ALL are welcome.  You do not have to be a Shriner to participate.  Please help us knock this one out of the park.

The Easter Egg Hunt will be on April 20th, out at the land.  We need some volunteers to arrange for moving tables, chairs, and the grill and for cooking.  Please contact one of the Clowns if you want to help out.  You will need to be there at 10:00 AM, eat at 12:00, and Easter Egg Hunt at 1:00 PM.  We always have a good time watching the kids gather eggs.

TSA is fast approaching and Bruce and all of his workers are doing a great job preparing for, what will be, a top notch TSA.

Nobles, two things that the Imperials keep stressing  for all Temples is to continue to work hard to increase membership and most of all . . . to have FUN! I think that we are doing a good job at both.  Please keep up the hard work.  And, as always, thanks to all of you for your time and efforts.  About the only thing that I would like to see grow is our attendance at Stated Meetings.  Le us all come together and try to make this happen.  I would really like to see our attendance at Stated Meeting be 70 plus nobles at the meetings on a regular basis.

Until next time, keep your head up, stay positive, continue to work for our kids and families and do not take any wooden nickels.

Steve Harris
2019 Potentate Maskat Shrine Temple


March 2019

Hello Nobles. I hope this message finds you all doing well.

I would like to report a few things that have already taken place at Maskat Temple, since January. The 3rd Thursday in January was a huge success. We had over 25 people in attendance. I would like to see this tradition of our “Happy Hour” continue. Several had fun playing games such as LRC and S…. your Neighbor. I would like to add cornhole as an option of having fun during our Happy Hour. Kenny is on the lookout for a pool table to add to the fun. This is just a great time of having fun for our nobles and ladies…..and a great time to include those that we would like to make nobles.

We also had a visit from the Nile Supreme Queen. While visiting with her during dinner, I found that she has a very difficult schedule during her year as Supreme Queen. She travels for the majority of the year. Thanks to all that helped with that visit.

Just a few days after the Supreme Queen visit, we decorated for, and participated in, the Harris Hoe-Down. We had over 110 people attend that event. The band was great. And a good time was had by all. I believe a new tradition was started by participating in “The Stroll.”  Some of you old people can really dance. Thanks to all that decorated, participated, and helped clean up.

Moving on in to February….We had our annual Super Bowl Party. Wow! What a turn out we had for that event. This year, we added a Cornhole Tournament for all ages. Thanks to those that organized it, it was a huge success. The 50/50 raised almost $900. Kenny and Bing did a great job getting the door prizes that were given away. A huge thanks to all of you who attended and participated.

Just after the Super Bowl Party, the Divan and Ladies headed out to Tyler, TX to attend Divan Midwinter. It was an excellent time for the new Divan Team to bond and get to know each other a little better. I’m excited about how well this Divan works together. We came away from the Midwinter with two huge things that were stressed by the Imperial sirs. One, like always, is to work hard to build our membership. The other was one that, in my opinion, is the most important, and will build membership. And, that is to HAVE FUN! I fully intend on working hard to make sure that everyone has FUN. The other valuable idea that we came away with, is the fact that beer brewing units are growing exponentially across our State. Anyone interested in getting this started at our temple can contact our Oriental Guide, Greg Talley, for more information.

We had a good Stated Meeting in February, with around 60 nobles in attendance. I feel the positivity and momentum building as we progress through the first quarter of 2019. My goal is to try and keep our Stated meetings at about an hour each month…..unless there is something special going on, that we need to spend a little more time on. The food was great, as usual, thanks to our cooking team. I would ask each of you to try and make our Stated meetings a priority on your calendar. I would love to see 80 plus nobles attending these meetings on a regular basis. By the time you read this article, the OG trip will have already taken place. I’m sure a great time was had by all and that Charles created even more memories for us while showing off his abilities on the golf course and in the bowling alley.

Thank each of you for your support. Let’s continue to Git R Done!

Steve Harris
2019 Potentate
Maskat Shrine Temple


February 2019

This is the first Potentate’s article that I’ll have the privilege to write.  I look forward to keeping you all informed as the 2019 year progresses.

Before I get into current business, I would like to thank Past Potentate Calvin Carlton for continuing the tradition of high quality leadership for our fraternity.  If it was not for leaders such as Calvin and those that came before him, we would not be able to continue to be strong.  I proudly accept the reins of leading our Temple from those that have stood before me and provide broad shoulders, on which I and those who follow, can stand . . . an honor that cannot be expalined.

Sheryl and I intend that 2019 will be a year to remember.  By the time you all have read this message, we will have already had our “Real Country, no Tux Hoedown” (Potentate’s Ball).  This will be followed by our Famous Super Bowl Party on February 3rd . . . a good time will be had by all.  The Divan Midwinter will take place in Tyler after the Super Bowl Party, followed by the OG Trip 2/21 thru 2/24.  The cost will be $75 to join us as our new OG, Greg Talley, walks to Shreveport.  While this trip will be fun and full of activities, let us not forget that the most important part of the trip is the visit to one of our hospitals and the support of the kids that are there . . . not Charles’ ability, or lack of, to bowl.

There will be a few changes in the way we do things this year.  For instance, Sheryl and I are trying to make room in our calendar to host a Cigar, Whiskey, and Pringles can Wine tasting event.  We are in search of electric carts to use for this event.

As always, our membership is of utmost importance.  Joey is doing a great job of coming up with some great ideas to protect and increase our membership.  Elvin is working hard on getting our name in the public on a regular basis.  He is trying to make the Maskat Shrine a household name.  Our Blue Lodges are doing a great job continuing their Masonic work . . . the path toward creating Masons that will want to become Shriners.  Please support our Blue Lodges.

As your Potentate and TSA President, I would like to thank Past Potentate Bruce Urban (and all of those involved in the planning and organization of this year’s TSA to be held in our wonderful city of Wichita Falls) for their efforts.  They are working very hard in order to continue the tradition of making Wichita Falls one of the favorite places to hold the TSA.

In closing, I would like to thank our entire Nobility for the faith and trust that you have placed in Sheryl and me be your 2019 Potentate and First Lady.  We promise to give our best effort in making 2019 a monumental year for our Temple.  To make this happen, we need ALL of you to participate in as many activities as possible and ALL work together to make it a successful year.  We simply cannot do it without ALL of you.

Thanks you for your support.  And, Let’s . . . Git R Done!!!!!

Steve Harris
2019 Potentate
Maskat Shrine Temple


January 2019

I’ll start this last message as I started the first one:

Well here we go – my last Potentate’s Message.  It’s hard to believe that 5 years have gone by so quickly.  Seems like yesterday that I was Oriental Guide and was absolutely lost in what I was to do.  Time went by and I kept learning; and, as it usually does, it just came together, with a lot of help.

There are lots of people that I need to thank.  First, I want to thank everyone that served in front of me.  I can say each brought something different to the table.  If you keep an open mind something can be learned from each that will help you grow.

Next, my current Divan.  What can I say – when I had my health issues, they all stepped up and this Temple ran seamlessly.  The best thing I did was get out of the way, they had this!  Thanks guys, more importantly, thanks ladies.

Next a big thanks to my aids and their ladies:  Ed and Pam Hall; Gordy and Gloria Antill; and Bob and Winnie Hamblin.  You guys were always one phone call away.  God bless you all!  My major event chairmen – IHOP Pancake Day: Charles Dean and Shawn Blacklock; Maskat Golf Tournament: Gordy Antill;  Oil Bowl:  Yoshi Fukasawa  and the return of the Oil Bowl Basketball Game, wow-what a success!  Sporting Clay Shoot:  Bruce Urban.  We tried the fall one–just couldn’t get past the weather.  Dead Cow Cookioff:  Speaking of weather — thanks to Scott McNeely who plowed through all the issues (including weather) to pull this event off.  Turkey Cook:  Thanks to Kenny Lemons for the leadership on our Turkey Cook.  This just keeps growing.  All of these events required additional manpower, so thanks to all the Nobility for pulling these events together and supporting them financially as well.

Thanks to Greg Stockton and the cast of the cooking unit for the Stated Meeting meals and for cooking at our special events.  We couldn’t have had better meals anywhere.  Hats off to a great job!

One more big thank you goes out to all of the Ladies of the Divan and Nobility. Judy and I could not have even come close without the help of you girls.  Thanks very much and God Bless each of you.

Now, some things I am proud of and some shortfalls.  I am happy about our Maskat Happy Hour.  Sometimes the crowd was small but other times it was very good.  None the less, it is something to build on in the next few years.

Our special events were very well organized.  Some were not as well attended as I expected–fighting weather, scheduling and other special events–but the people attending always had a great time.  I didn’t get the community out here as I had hoped I would. Again, something we all have spoken of and will continue this as a focus next year.

Our advertising committee was a large disappointment to me.  We had success with the people we were able to speak with but were well short of the budget for the year.  We were able to pick up several big rentals that will help.

All in all, I think we did the best we could with the cards dealt to us this year.  Membership was also disappointing, but I think Joey Viavattene has a good plan for 2019.

I want to thank the Nobility for the opportunity to sit as the leader of our most excellent fraternity.  This has been one of the brightest spots in my life, and I have made some lifelong friends.  I will pledge to continue working my best to support our mission of helping the Shriners Hospitals  offer world-class treatment to the children while keeping Maskat Temple solvent and stable.

Thanks, again for the support this year!

I love you all!

Calvin Carlton
2018 Potentate
Maskat Shrine Temple