Mary Stoll has been crowned the 2015 Michigan Apple Queen, and Madison Rasch is first runner-up. They were crowned during the Michigan Fruit, Vegetable, and Farm Market Expo in Grand Rapids in December.
Mary Stoll, of Kent City, is the daughter of Richard and Joyce Stoll and is a pre-optometry student at Ferris State University. She is the niece and granddaughter of apple growers, the Nels and Luanne Nyblad family.
Madison Rasch, of Conklin, is the daughter of Duane and Amy Rasch and is a student at Muskegon Community College. She is the daughter and granddaughter of apple growers.
Contestants for Michigan Apple Queen must have a connection to the Michigan apple industry. Both families farm on Fruit Ridge north of Grand Rapids. They were crowned by last year’s queen, Elizabeth Wittenbach of Belding.
“Mary will serve the industry well as an ambassador at schools, parades, festivals, grocery store events, and more,” said Diane Smith, executive director of the Michigan Apple Committee, which sponsors the annual event, now in its 64th year.
The queen and runner each receive scholarships from the Michigan Apple Committee ($1,000 each) and the Michigan State Horticultural Society ($5,000 to the queen and $1,500 to the runner-up).