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80th King and Queen Regents are Crowned

2018 Queen Regent, D.A. McGilvary, cuts the Queen’s cake at the Regents’ Reception as her husband and King Regent, Frank McGilvary looks on. Photo courtesy of Nick Nugent.

Fairbanks–On March 11, 2018, Frank and D.A. McGilvary were crowned the Fairbanks Igloos’ 2018 King and Queen Regents. The honor was bestowed in the 80th ritual where the previous King and Queen, Ray Sandberg and Marilyn Nigro, handed off their rein and ambassadorial responsibilities to the incoming King and Queen.

The tradition began with the Fairbanks Winter Carnival in 1934, where Fairbanksans celebrated the coming Spring with a dog mushing race, barbecue, winter games, dances, a parade, selection of a Carnival King and Queen as well as Pioneer King and Queen. The first King Regent was William N. Craige and first Queen Regent was Catherine Van Curtier.

Today, the Winter Carnival is no longer celebrated but at least two of the events remain, a dog mushing race and the crowning of the Pioneer King and Queen Regents.

The 2018 ceremony was held in the Stampede Room at Pioneer Hall in Pioneer Memorial Park, Inc. A sumptuous reception followed in the Pioneer Hall where the newly crowned King and Queen were toasted by fellow Pioneer, Michael Gibson, who quoted the original toast first issued in 1934, written by Helen Allen.

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