January 5, 2015
The village of Sebewaing is an incorporated portion of the Michigan Thumb, with 1,759 citizens of Sebewaing Township in Huron County. Following the statistics compiled by the U.S. Cencus Bureau during and before the 2010 census, Sebewaing’s land area is 1.58 square miles, and its water area is .13 square miles, for a total of 1.71 square miles.
The name Sebewaing is thought to be from the Ojibwe word “ziibiiweng”, which has been translated to mean “by the stream”.
As early as 1850, settlers, many from Germany, had built up the town center. The Braendle Brewery opened up in 1880, to be renamed the Sebewaing Brewing Company in 1927. It was in continuous operation, turning out a variety of German-style beers, until 1985. A few of the beers brewed there are now produced in Webberville, Michigan by the Michigan Brewing Company, with the original recipes and labels.
Because of the presence of the Michigan Sugar mill in the village, Sebewaing is often referred to as the Sugar Beet Capital. In addition, the Michigan Sugar Festival is held in the middle of June of each year in Sebewaing. The stated goal of the festival (from the Sebewaing chamber of commerce website) is “To show the area’s appreciation to the sugar industry which has purchased sugar beet crops from farmers and processed sugar here with local employees since 1902.”
The Sebewaing village park holds the midway for the festival. There are many local farmers with goods and produce for sale. There are a wide assortment of carnival games and amusement park rides to thrill all ages. The entertainment tent is the home to numerous kinds of musical groups and of the annual opening night dance.
A highlight each year, of course, is the selection and coronation of the Sugar Queen, usually occurring on the Friday night of the festival. Also a crowd favorite is the Beet Festival Grand Parade on Saturday morning, followed by the Saturday night fireworks. Adding to the fun and excitement is the featured tractor pulls and annual softball tournament, on the parks fields.
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