Latest News!

A recapitulation of important news flashes discussed at recent Tent meetings...


LOOK! The UCLA Film & Television Archive has started a project to restore ALL surviving negatives of Laurel and Hardy films. It will take time and money.

Please see their website at

to learn more about this most worthy of projects and how YOU can help. See the Grand Sheik for additional details. Everyone: this is a chance to ensure that future generations will be able to enjoy Laurel and Hardy films the way they were meant to be enjoyed - in pristine condition! Please help us make this happen!

Laurel & Hardy Set of 58 Roach Sound Films Now Available!

Digitally Remastered And Digitally Restored, Loaded With Over Two Hours Of Special Features, The Spectacular 10-Disc Set arrived October 25, 2011 From RHI Entertainment And Vivendi Entertainment”. The set features ALL the Laurel and Hardy sound shorts and features from 1929-1940 produced at the Hal Roach Studios. This is the first such extensive set made for the USA audience, and additional details about this grand release can be found online at:

Although it’s list price is $99.98, several retailers are already offering it at a pre-order discount, e.g. ($74.99) and ($64.99). Please support the boys and get in on the fun with this wonderful new collection of their movies!

Laurel and Hardy on Television on Turner Classics (TCM):

Please advise “The Chimp Tent” if you become aware of future screenings of Laurel and Hardy or other Hal Roach films on TCM! In the meantime, here are some upcoming related TCM offerings featuring some silent Laurel and Hardy films that you might like:

Midnight, Sunday March 6, 2016 extending into very early Monday morning March 7 there will be five (5) Laurel and Hardy silent shorts shown in succession: “Double Whoopee” (1929), “Habeas Corpus” (1928), “Big Business” (1929), “Berth Marks” (1929), and Angora Love (1929)!

Upcoming and Recent Festivals, Conventions, and Get-Togethers

The 19th International Convention of the Sons of the Desert will be held in Hollywood, California from July 2 - 6, 2014. Another great convention took place where the movies were actually shot! The Grand Sheik’s Facebook album of photos can be found at: 

Hollywood, California Convention photos

The 18th International Convention of the Sons of the Desert was held in Manchester, New Hampshire from July 16 - 22, 2012. Your Grand Sheik was lucky enough to be in attendance to join in on all the fun! You can view a Facebook album of his photos at: 

Manchester SOD Convention photos

The 23rd Annual Oliver Hardy Festival took place in Harlem, Georgia on Saturday Oct 1, 2011. This is always a fun event, and brings tens of thousands (yes, tens of thousands) of people to celebrate Ollie’s birthday in his home town. Your Grand Sheik was in attendance and photographic evidence of his visit can be found at:

2011 Oliver Hardy Festival in Harlem, Georgia photos

While in Georgia, a tour was also presented featuring the neighboring town of Milledgeville, where Oliver Hardy spent his youth. These photos may be seen at:

2011 Milledgeville, Georgia photos of where Oliver Hardy lived as a young man

The 17th International Convention of the Sons of the Desert took place from June 16-20, 2010 in Sacramento, California. Your Grand Sheik was also in attendance at THAT meeting, and you can view his photographic evidence on this event at:


Sacramento SOD Convention photos

“The Chimp Tent” participated in the Northside Fourth of July Parade, held on Saturday, July 3, 2010 and we did ourselves proud! Fifteen (15) of our finest Chimps enjoyed a brilliant and sunny day, and marched with Alvin Wulfekuhl’s 1925 Model T, which was adorned with Chimp Tent banners and fliers. Marchers held posters of The Boys, and preceding the car was our beautiful Chimp Tent banner, held high with obvious pride.


Proud marchers included members John Ellmore, Bob Wilhelm, Phil & Elyse Bullen, the McCarthy family (Dan, Barbara, & Blaine), Vice-Sheik Victoria and her husband Brian Baumgardner, Sara Leah Pihakis, Bruce McCollum, Jeff Suess, Dylan Sheridan, and of course Alvin and your Grand Sheik!


Photos from this holiday parade are posted on Gene Sorkin’s Facebook page - to glimpse some of the excitement, please click the link below:


Cincinnati’s Chimp Tent marchers in the fabulous Northside Fourth of July parade


So take a look at the fun we had, and make plans to join us next year in this fun parade!

Other ‘Stuff’ Of Interest...




Fez-O-Rama ( features a tall red-wavy velvet fez, with a one-color solid embroidery, and offers you your choice of tassel color, although they think the gold tassel suits it just fine! This fez has the licensing approval of “The Sons Of The Desert” organization and Fez-O-Rama have added that as an accompanying tag on the inner quilted lining. These fezzes are NOT “one size fits all”, but the website lists how you should measure your head in order to find its correct fez size! Note: These fezzes are all hand-made. Each fez costs $55.00. See photo on their web site to get an idea of what this fez looks like! Tassels come in yellow, black, or red.


The Grand Sheik of the Berth Marks Tent, Oasis #238 in Harlem, Georgia, has announced that this Tent will have an honorary membership open to all fans of Laurel and Hardy. The Grand Sheik, Gary “Oliver” Russeth (, has invited all of the "out-of-town boys" (and gals) to become honorary Berth Marks Tent members which will entitle them to be involved with Berth Marks meetings and other functions via email, and to receive a quarterly newsletter, "The Pottsville Express," with issues in Summer, Fall, Winter and Spring.  One objective of the Tent will be to raise money to allow them to erect a bronze statue of the likenesses of Laurel and Hardy in Harlem, as a tribute to the birthplace of (Oliver) Noravell Hardy, who was born there on January 18, 1892.

Statue Appeal: Contributions towards the bronze statue are on a voluntary basis. They have asked all tents in the Sons of the Desert organization to assist them in this effort--one that is for all Sons to enjoy. Anyone who wishes to contribute may send their donation check made out to "Laurel and Hardy Statue Account" in care of Sub-Vice-Vizier, Jean M. Russeth, 415 E. Boundary Street, Harlem, Georgia  30814. Their efforts at raising funds will be reported periodically in “The Pottsville Express”. 

They would welcome your input, ideas and suggestions, and look forward to hearing from all fans of Laurel and Hardy. The Chimp Tent has made a donation to this worthwhile and wonderful appeal, and urges other Tents and individuals who are fans of Laurel and Hardy to contribute whatever they can.

Recently Released Books Related To The Boys

The complete reference source for everything related to Laurel and Hardy’s films has been published recently by Bonaventure Press. Randy Skredvedt’s “Laurel and Hardy: The Magic Behind The Movies” (3rd edition) has been completely updated and expanded to over include over 800 pages and 1,000 photos. Stories of the films, stars, co-stars, and everyone who is anyone behind the cameras or in the studios is examined and explored. Mr. Skredvedt has done the work and all we have to do is read it! Now that’s a bargain, and look some more at what is in this fabulous landmark publication about the boys:

  1. *oversized 8.5 X 11 inch hardcover, with heavy glossy paper

  2. *nearly 50% more text and four times the no. of photos of previous editions

  3. *exclusive quotes and interview anecdotes from more than 60 of the duo’s co-workers

  4. *detailed accounts of hilarious unused scenes, culled from the original scripts

  5. *details about the locations where Laurel and Hardy filmed many of their famous scenes

  6. *full cast and credit information about each film

WARNING: This is a limited edition that will be going on sale from retailers nationwide beginning June 16, 2016. Once this hardcover print run is sold out, it will not be reprinted!

The details: The must-have book is available from the Bonaventure Press

(From the Grapevine Video web site): In this first volume of a proposed trilogy on the Comedy Film Industry entitled, “Smileage Guaranteed: Past Humor, Present Laughter Musings on the Comedy Film Industry 1910-1945. Volume One: Hal Roach”, film historian Richard M. Roberts examines the legendary “Lot Of Fun” belonging to Producer Hal Roach, not through the Series and Comedians that he made immortal like Laurel and Hardy, Harold Lloyd, or the Our Gang Comedies, but through all of the lesser-known comedians who plied their trade at the Studio: Charley Chase, Max Davidson, Snub Pollard, Eddie Boland, and some major comedians who made temporary stops on the Culver City Lot in the ups and downs of their careers like Harry Langdon and Mabel Normand, among others. Calling this book “the World’s Longest Footnote”, Roberts uncovers new insight into the work of perhaps the most lasting of the Silent and Sound Film Comedy Producers, and culminates the Book with the most comprehensive Hal Roach Filmography ever published.

The details: print ISBN: 978-0-9893019-0-9. 522 pages, softcover 2013. The book is available from and from the Grapevine Video web site.

(From the McFarland Publishers web site): Stan Laurel was born in Northeast England as Arthur Stanley Jefferson, the son of a prominent theatrical producer. A new biography, “The Making of Stan Laurel: Echoes of a British Boyhood” by Danny Lawrence, examines young Arthur’s family background, his formative years, and his struggle to establish his show business career. Throughout his life, Arthur (and then when he became Stan of course) retained the emotional bonds forged in his youth, sporadically returning to his home town of Ulverston.

Describing Stan Laurel’s key role in making his films with longtime teammate Oliver Hardy so successful internationally, the book also analyzes how Stan’s earliest life experiences are often echoed in those films. Included is a selection of photographs relevant to Laurel’s boyhood, many related to recurring themes in the Laurel and Hardy comedies. An appendix lists the theaters played during the team’s three tours of the United Kingdom between 1947 and 1954.

The details: print ISBN: 978-0-7864-6312-1; ebook ISBN: 978-0-7864-8515-4. 192 pages, softcover 2011. The book is available from and from the McFarland Publishing Co. web site.