The Wonderful Team Leaders
Left to right: Jacqueline Leavitt, Joe Leavitt, Hayden Leavit, Claire Morton, Chase Eckert
Joe and Jacqueline Leavitt, OwnersAfter several trips to the hospital, Jacqueline was born and brought home to live at the carnival. Her first baby bed was a makeshift cradle placed under the counter of the game where Claire worked. As a kid she learned to do all the “carney chores”: spin candy, pop popcorn, stamp targets, smash patties, shuck corn; wherever the opportunity to work and contribute to the business.
At age 16 Joe jumped on a carnival truck headed to Gordon, Nebraska. Who would have thought a boy raised on a ranch in South Dakota would gain all the skills necessary to eventually run his own carnival.
Joe and Jacqueline met in 1993, both working for Claire at Fur Rendezvous. They married that fall and now have four children: Chase, Bailey, Hayden and Alexis.
Claire Morton, President EmeritusClaire was raised in a big family by a single mom. They depended on their farming neighbors for opportunities to work and contribute. She joined her first carnival when she was just 21, and has been in love with the business ever since!
She has served as President of The Northwest and Royal Hawaiian Showmen’s Club, Board of Directors of Outdoor Amusement Business Assoc. and as the First female President of the Showmen’s League Of America.
Claire has said that she “built this carnival on Cotton Candy” and we are certainly glad she did!
Neal and Andrea Davis, Maintenance Manager and Event Manager
Perfect examples of the changing and complex nature of carnival business, Neal and Andrea bring to the company many skills from their past. Neal owned a construction business in Chugiak and Andrea was a teacher in Christian education for 10 years. Andrea began working for Golden Wheel in 2000 with Neal joining the team in 2008 and he is now a NAARSO Level 1 safety inspector.
They were married in 1994 and have a son, Nathan.
Chase and Chelsea Eckert, Event Booking and Special Project Management
Chase, Joe and Jacqueline’s oldest son, carries on the family legacy of working in the carnival business. He graduated from Westmont College with a Bachelor’s degree majoring in English and a minor in Biology. He met his wife, Chelsea at Westmont and they married in the fall of 2012. Chase and Chelsea have recently been touring Southeast Alaska making new friends and organizing our spring events.
Hayden and Alissa Leavitt, Games Manager and Accounting Assistant
Hayden, Joe and Jacqueline’s youngest son, is a valuable part of the family fun business. He graduated from Azusa Pacific University with a Bachelor’s degree majoring in Business and Communication. He and Alissa were married in 2015. Alissa has been in the carnival business since 2007 and has experience in face painting, the food wagons, and the office, her degree is in Business Administration.
Jim and Rosie Sander, Ride Manager and Food Manager
Jim and Rosie joined Golden Wheel during Fur Rondy of 2012. Jim has a degree in Turf Management from Rutgers University and holds a NAARSO Level 1 operations certification. Rosie studied art at Grand Canyon. They began their career in the carnival business traveling for five years with Ray Cammack Shows. They are both ServSafe certified. They have been married since 1988 and have three children: Raimie, Alissa, Newton and one granddaughter: Cadence.
Deena Maus, Home Office Manager
Deena has been with Golden Wheel for three years full time after almost 20 years of helping as needed. She is the Corporate Secretary and handles the behind the scenes office operations. She has been married to her husband, Dan, since 1986. They have three children: Kyle, Kacee, Kennedy as well as four grandchildren: Jocelyn, Tracksen, Brock, and Krimsen.