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OUR STORY

Hub LuehrsThe story begins with a bright-eyed young Hub Luehrs. In 1936, Hub Luehrs, then 18, hitchhiked to Ripon, Wisconsin to join his Uncle Jack's carnival where he began work on a Tilt-A-Whirl.

In 1937, Hub met Frank Schimnowski, formerly of River Park in Winnipeg, Canada and concessions manager at the Milwaukee State Fair. He traveled with concessions and bingo. Frank encouraged young Luehrs before Hub even realized that Frank had a daughter, Winnifred. That realization led to matrimony. They were married in 1938 on Thanksgiving Day.

This young married couple started out with only one ride and eventually purchased a bingo and a few concessions. With their family growing, Hub and Winnie decided to purchase their own carnival.

In the fall of 1956, H.W. “Hub” Luehrs negotiated with the late Paul Robertson for the purchase of Ideal Rides, which played in Indiana and Illinois. In the spring of 1957, Luehrs' Ideal Rides, Inc. hit the road!

Luehrs' Ideal Rides began with only five rides: Octopus, Ferris wheel, Merry-go-round, King pony cart and a new Shiff coaster. Hub and Winnie knew with the kids in school that they could not grow fast, so they decided to grow BEST, rather than biggest. With limited funds they started buying, selling, trading and refurbishing.

Original Ferris WheelWith the help and cooperation from their family, Hub and Winnie's vision of being the BEST became a reality.

FAMILY has always been an integral part of Luehrs' Ideal Rides and this stems from Luehrs' founders. With great pride, they raised four children: William, Jon, Jean and Lorelei. All four children attended college, and worked for Luehrs' Ideal Rides in many capacities. This family atmosphere can still be felt on our midway today.

Winnie passed away in 1983 and Hub in 1999. Their vision of being the BEST has been passed down for four generations.

The third generation of Luehrs' presently owns Luehrs' Ideal Rides. Lorelei and Andy Schoendienst, and Jean and Joe Clair purchased the company in 1996. Hub's grandson Andrew Schoendienst, granddaughter Kristin Clair also works for Luehrs' Ideal Rides. Continuing with the ideals and standards from the generations before them, The Schoendienst & Clair families are working hard and striving for excellence.

Hall of Fame

In 2001, Hub Luehrs was inducted into the Outdoor Amusement Business Association's (OABA) Hall of Fame. Hub's inductee video can be viewed below.

OUR TEAM

Luehrs Team

PRESIDENT - ANDREW F. SCHOENDIENST

Andy earned his degree in Aircraft Engineering from St. Louis University in 1975. He has been part of the mobile amusement industry since 1968. Through his former employer, Ed Murphy, Andy was introduced to his favorite client, Hub Luehrs. In 1986, Andy married Hub’s youngest daughter, Lorelei. Andy is past Chairman of the OABA and past President of the Showmen’s League of America, St. Louis Chapter. Andy is currently the 3rd vice of the Showmen’s league of America Chicago chapter. Andy is known for his personal attention to detail that he feels every event deserves.

VICE PRESIDENT - JOSEPH L. CLAIR

Joe earned his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Las Vegas in 1970. Joe met Jon Luehrs in high school in Hollywood, Fl. Jon introduced Joe to his family and also his twin sister Jean. In the summer of 1969, Joe went to work for his friend Jon Luehrs and soon began dating his twin sister Jean. The two married in 1971.

SECRETARY - JEAN A. CLAIR

Jean earned her Bachelor of Science in Journalism from the University of Florida in 1969. Throughout her childhood Jean spent many summers helping her parents run their carnival. It was through these experiences that she learned how to do just about anything, from making cotton candy to selling tickets. She was the first women president of the Outdoor Amusement Business Association in 1996. She is a past president of the Showmen’s League of America, Chicago chapter and a past President of the St. Louis chapter. She was inducted into the prestigious OABA hall of fame in 2015.

TREASURER - LORELEI L. SCHOENDIENST

Lorelei earned her Bachelor of Arts in Education from the University of Florida in 1976. Lorelei spent her summers working for her family and learning how to run the office from her mother. After spending a few years teaching, she returned to the family business and became treasurer in 1981. Lorelei was the first woman president of the Showmen’s League of America, St. Louis chapter in 2004. She is currently a director for the Outdoor Amusement Business Association.

KRISTIN CLAIR

Kristin graduated from Villanova University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications. Kristin is the granddaughter of Hub and Winnie. As Marketing and Human Resources director, Kristin manages all employment, marketing and social media. Her two sons, Thomas and William, can often be found on the midway over the summer months.

ANDREW F. SCHOENDIENST, JR

Andrew is a 2009 graduate of the University of Missouri with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Advertising and Business Administration. Andrew is the youngest grandchild of Hub and Winnie. As the Director of General Management, Andrew manages ticket sales as well as all daily midway operations. He is an AIMS certified level 2 operations technician.

In 2023, Andrew’s fiance, Benna Sandlofer joined the Luehrs’ team.