This Woman May Be The First Person With Down Syndrome To Compete In A State Beauty Pageant

"Beauty is inside out."

Mikayla Holmgren, 22, is taking the beauty pageant world by storm. She will be the first contestant with Down syndrome to compete in the Miss Minnesota state beauty pageant. 

The Bethel University student only received her confirmation notice for the pageant a couple of days ago, but the news of her entry has already gone viral.

Teen Vogue states Holmgren is reportedly the first contestant with Down syndrome to ever compete in the Miss Minnesota pageant. And as far as pageant officials know, she is the first person with Down syndrome to compete in any statewide pageant. Period. 


And if Holmgren wins Miss Minnesota, she can potentially go on to compete in Miss America then Miss Universe.

Given that she previously won the 2015 Minnesota Junior Miss Amazing pageant, an event for girls and women with disabilities, she has experience on her side to help her take the crown. She even went on to represent Minnesota in the national Miss Junior Pageant in Los Angeles.

Furthermore, Holmgren is an accomplished dancer with a love of being on stage. She has been dancing since she was six and has competed individually, and as part of her college's dance team. Holmgren even has a Facebook page devoted to her dance accomplishments

Unfortunately, there is no talent portion of Miss Minnesota, so she will have to save those skills for future pageants. But her talents will no doubt help in the interview segment.

With her athleticism, academics, and previous pageant history combined with her work as a mentor, Holmgren is already serving as a role model before she has even taken to the stage.

Star Tribune reported that the co-directors of the pageant think so. "Mikayla is a trailblazer," said Denise Wallace, executive co-director of the Miss Minnesota USA pageant.

Jordan Buckellew, the director of Minnesota Miss Amazing agrees.

"To have women from all walks of life truly be represented on stage shows that pageants are accessible for all and that beauty isn't a box that we can fit in."

As for Holmgren's definition of beauty, she told Teen Vogue, "Beauty is inside out."

And it is this message that she is going to be taking with her to the pageant. "I want the whole world to see that I can do things that are hard and that people with Down syndrome are beautiful and talented," she said to


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