June 30 - 7, 2018

Meet The Queen's Court!

2017-2018 National Cherry Festival Queen Candidates

Join us in congratulating these young ladies!


Ashley Schichtel

Ashley Ann Schichtel is a young woman with dreams almost as big as her love for others. She is the daughter of Corey and Tara Schichtel. She is a 2011 graduate of Traverse City West Senior High School and a current student at Kirtland Community College and Grand Valley State University. She was born and raised in Traverse City with a passion for the water and pride in the cherry capitol.

Ashley is working on completing her Associate’s and Bachelor’s degree in nursing concurrently. When she graduates in 2019, she will continue on to graduate school to pursue Physician Assistant studies. She currently works at a local orthopedic surgical practice as a medical assistant and enjoys the ability to learn and grow daily alongside top medical professionals. Ashley’s future goals go beyond obtaining a title. She aspires to not only be a provider but to create an organization to support youth from broken families as well as an organization to provide support for suicide prevention and awareness. She plans to travel on missions trips and expand her volunteering experience to better understand and serve those she will treat. She dreams of having her own horse ranch and property to get lost riding on. She plans to have a husband and children that love to be just as silly as she is and enjoy every moment of life.

Ashley is graciously sponsored by Ace Welding & Machine, Inc., Traverse City, Michigan.

Kayley Crawford

Kayley is the 20-year- old daughter of Ken and Kim Crawford of Gaylord. She is a 2014 graduate of Gaylord High School and is currently attending Central Michigan University where she is pursuing a degree in Elementary Education with a focus in Early Childhood Education. In May of 2018, she will graduate with her bachelor’s degree and pursue employment as a Kindergarten Teacher.

While at CMU, she is passionately involved with the Alternative Breaks program as a Board Member and Site Leader volunteering for various social issues over week and weekend breaks. The breaks have given her the opportunity to give back and to make a difference for various organizations. She is also involved with the American Sign Language Club and the Student Michigan Education Association. While at college, she is employed at the Mary Ellen Brandell Volunteer Center and during the summer, the Gaylord Country Club.

Kayley’s future goals are to continue to volunteer in different areas and to make an awareness of what little actions can be taken to make a huge difference for future generations. With her love for the environment and Northern Michigan, she would love to represent Traverse City, The Cherry Festival and Cherries. It would be a great opportunity to be an Ambassador and spread the word about the importance of cherries for the Grand Traverse Region.

In her spare time, she loves to travel, oil paint, photography, swim, bake, do Zumba, and long board. Kayley is sponsored by Advanced Electric, Inc.

Shaelyn Bunner

Shaelyn Josette Bunner is the 20-year- old daughter of Chance and Rachel Bunner of Traverse City. She is a 2015 graduate of St. Francis High School and a recent graduate of the Douglas J Aveda Institute Cosmetology, where she earned top honors in practical work as well as academics. She is a State of Michigan Licensed Cosmetologist currently assisting at Allure Salon and Spa in Traverse City.

Shaelyn’s future goals include becoming an Artistic Director for movies, television, or stage productions, where she can showcase her love and talent in makeup application and cosmetic special effects. She received her first Internet Movie Database (IMDb) recognition as the Key Makeup Artist for the independent film Drama Class, and looks forward to many other exciting opportunities in this field. She also looks forward to traveling abroad, as well as marriage and starting a family.

Shaelyn’s other passions and pursuits include: painting, singing, photography, rosary making, antique shopping, and spending quiet time with those she loves.

Sponsored by GV Family, LLC and Triple D Orchards, Shaelyn is grateful for the love and support from her family, friends, and her sponsors during this exciting time.

Sophie Vukasovich

Sophie is the 20-year- old daughter of Mark and Hadley Vukasovich of Suttons Bay, Michigan. She is going into her junior year at Michigan State University, pursuing a degree within the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. Sophie plans to graduate in May of 2019, majoring in Food Industry Management with a minor in Horticulture, specializing in Fruit and Vegetable Production.

While in high school, Sophie started her own Cottage Industry business, selling homemade jams, jellies, salsas, t-shirts and other canned goods, to help her fund her way through college. She plans to open a storefront on her farm after college, where she would produce and sell canned goods, baked goods and produce, as well as promote local products and the farm-to- table concept. Through her business, she wants to share with others her love for Northern Michigan, where she grew up, and her passion for preserving and cooking.

Besides for her love and appreciation of agriculture, Sophie enjoys being involved on campus and her community at home through her church, service organizations and work. She enjoys the outdoors very much, enjoys art and music, and loves spending time with her family and friends.

Sophie is graciously sponsored by Aurora Cellars.