When Kathryn Kueppers puts on her crown, she knows it carries a rich history. After earning the title Miss Coon Rapids 2019 earlier in the year, Kathryn was then crowned Miss Minnesota. Next, she will compete on the Miss America stage in December.
She's walking in familiar footsteps. Kathryn's mom Vicki was Miss Minnesota in 1983. They are the first mother daughter duo to both hold the Miss Minnesota title.
“It's so fun, because how many mothers and daughters get to say that they competed at Miss America?” said Kathryn. “When I was younger, it was something that I loved to do with my mom - go and watch this organization and watch the women compete. And as I grew up I realized this common theme of my role models; they were all women from the Miss America organization, women I looked up to. So I knew that someday, I wanted to do what all of them did and that was make a difference through the title.”
Now that it's Kathryn's turn to wear the crown, it's history is changing. Nearly one hundred years after it's inception, the competition has been re-branded Miss America 2.0.
“The biggest difference about 2.0 is that swimsuit has been eliminated and that we are all given more of an opportunity to speak about who we are and what we want to do,” said Kathryn.
The 21-year old is a St. Paul native, but will have many fans in the Coon Rapids community cheering for her when she takes the Miss America stage. Before holding the Miss Coon Rapids title, Kathryn was first named Miss Coon Rapids Outstanding Teen back in 2013.
“Coon Rapids is my home, my new home. Half the time I tell people I'm just from Coon Rapids because I've loved being here,” she said. “I'm so excited now that I get to represent not just Minnesota, but Coon Rapids on the Miss America stage.”
The Miss America competition airs live on NBC on Thursday, December 19th.