FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Monday, June 18, 2018 Contact: Rob Clark, Michigan Sugar Company, 989-686-0161

Rachel Phillips, Ashely Gibbs crowned Queen’s Court Attendants at 54th annual Michigan Sugar Festival

SEBEWAING – Paige Lupcke of Saginaw was crowned the 2018 Michigan Sugar Queen during a ceremony held Friday, June 15, as part of the 54th annual Michigan Sugar Festival in Sebewaing.

Lupcke, 21, is a graduate of Bay City Central High School and attends Delta College, where she is part of the Michigan State University Institute of Agricultural Technology program. She hopes to complete her degree at Michigan State University. She is the daughter of Rick and Christie Lupcke.

“Once again, Michigan Sugar Company is fortunate to have found a young woman who we know will be an excellent representative and ambassador for our company,” said Rob Clark, Director of Communications and Community Relations for Michigan Sugar. “Her knowledge of our company and agriculture in general, along with the quality of her character, shined through during the selection process. We are looking forward to a great year with Paige as the Michigan Sugar Queen.”

Also crowned during the June 15 ceremony were 1st Attendant Rachel Phillips, of Almont, and 2nd Attendant Ashley Gibbs, of Almont. They, too, are serving as ambassadors for Michigan Sugar Company for the next year.

Phillips, 18, is a graduate of Almont High School and will be attending Oakland University where she plans to study veterinary medicine. She is the daughter of Robert and Ann Phillips.

Gibbs, 18, is a graduate of Almont High School and plans to study agricultural education at Michigan State University. She is the daughter of Kevin and Brenda Gibbs.

The new Queen and Court Attendants jumped right into their year of service, appearing Saturday, June 16, in the annual Michigan Sugar Festival Parade, throwing out the first pitch at the Michigan Sugarbeets baseball game and helping hand out free bags of Pioneer Sugar and cotton candy at the festival grounds in Sebewaing.

This year, Michigan Sugar Company received 21 applications through its Michigan Sugar Queen Scholarship Program with 13 selected as finalists: Heidi Bierlein, Bailie Gagne, Ashley Gibbs, Grace
Kern, Jannah LaBean, Paige Lupcke, Montana Maher, Anastasia Melnik, Morganne Narrin, Amanda Neumann, Rachel Phillips, Reaghan Scott and Ashleigh Sherd.

Through the Michigan Sugar Queen Scholarship Program, a Queen and two Attendants are chosen to serve for one year as ambassadors for Michigan Sugar Company. Their duties include public appearances, community service projects, interaction with lawmakers and agriculture leaders and helping to represent Michigan Sugar Company throughout the state.

After completing the requirements of the program, the Queen receives a $2,000 scholarship and each attendant a $1,000 scholarship to be used to help pay for college.

With its corporate office in Bay City, Michigan Sugar Company is a cooperative owned by approximately 1,000 growers who annually plant and harvest about 160,000 acres of sugarbeets. The company processes those beets at factories in Bay City, Caro, Croswell and Sebewaing, producing approximately 1.2 billion pounds of sugar each year that it sells under the Pioneer and Big Chief brands.

Photo Captions
Paige Lupcke, 21, of Saginaw, was crowned the 2018 Michigan Sugar Queen on Friday, June 15, during a ceremony at the 54th annual Michigan Sugar Festival in Sebewaing.

The 2018 Michigan Sugar Queen and Court: from left, 2nd Attendant Ashley Gibbs of Almont, Michigan Sugar Queen Paige Lupcke of Saginaw, and 1st Attendant Rachel Phillips of Almont.