She's just 17! Nebraskan wins Miss America pageant
Youngest winner since first pageant in 1921; first ever from Cornhusker State
LAS VEGAS — A 17-year-old aspiring politician from Nebraska captured the Miss America crown on Saturday after beating 52 other young women from across the United States.
Teresa Scanlan won a $50,000 scholarship and a yearlong run with the crown at the competition at the Planet Hollywood casino-resort in Las Vegas, giving the Cornhusker State its first-ever win at the pageant.
"And I never passed up a cookie on my journey here," Scanlan said.
She's the youngest Miss America since the pageant implemented age limits in 1938. Rosemary LaPlanche was runner-up in 1940 and easily won the crown in 1941 despite being one month too young to compete, according to the pageant's website.
Julie Jacobson / AP file
Miss Nebraska Teresa Scanlan walks in the "Show Us Your Shoes" parade as part of Miss America festivities on Friday. On Saturday, Scanlan said age didn't matter, though she thought she might have been an underdog because of her youth.
"We were on an even playing field," she said. "From 17 to 24, that can be a huge age range. But with these girls, they are all at the highest level imaginible."
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