Updated: Find out how to watch Grand Forks mom compete at national pageant this month

Jessica Rerick will represent the state as Mrs. North Dakota American

Jessica Rerick, OTMOM contributor, will compete as Mrs. North Dakota American next month.
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Despite a Covid diagnosis sidelining Jessica Rerick in May for the state pageant, she will compete nationally as Mrs. North Dakota American .

“I felt so sad…so crushed,” Rerick shared about her Covid diagnosis just days before the state pageant. “But it just goes to show that life will always teach you that you’re not in control.” As she coped with the fact that she would miss the state event, Rerick’s 12-year-old son Perry gently reminded her of everything she’d already accomplished. “He came in and grabbed my hand and said, ‘Just think of all the good things that have happened because of this,’” she said.

She’s grateful to still have the opportunity to reign as Mrs. North Dakota American and compete nationally in the areas of private interview, swimsuit, state costume and evening gown, although Rerick laughed that she still hasn’t worn her 4-inch pageant heels on stage yet. But she’s been getting some practice in them, especially at all the appearances she has been making this summer. In addition, she’s completing all the paperwork necessary and getting her fine-tuned platform up and running.

She now plans to focus on Kids Dish, which will supply kitchen kits for families in shelters that will provide basic kitchen necessities like potholders, mixing bowls, a cookbook and more. “The kitchen is such an important part of the home, and so many people show love to one another through food, so I’m excited to be able to help people in this way,” she explained.

Rerick is also getting ready for the national pageant by participating in several mock interviews. The 4- to 5-minute events offer her a chance to hone her message and polish responses, as well as collect valuable feedback from those within the pageant and business community. In addition to prepping intellectually, Rerick is also figuring out how she’s going to get her pageant wardrobe – which will include up to 5 evening gowns, several other outfits, and a pair of 6-foot tall angel wings she’s wearing for the state portion of the competition – into her luggage.


Before she leaves Aug. 11, Rerick and her fellow queen Klaudia Holkup will be wished well at a send off party at the Grand Forks Country Club on Aug. 1 . Holkup and Rerick will speak about their platforms and sign autographs at the event, which runs from 7 to 9 p.m.

Jessica Rerick poses with her son during one of her parade appearances this summer.
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Rerick’s husband, mom Denise Karley, sister Kellie Hevenor and her husband Peter, as well as her brother-in-law Jay and her sister Nora Hubbarb sister, (also helping her with Rerick's hair and makeup) will be traveling to Las Vegas to watch her compete leading up to the big event on Aug. 19.

As a mom, Rerick shared that she had breathed a sigh of relief when she learned that she would be back – winner or not – to Grand Forks for her sons’ first day of school on Aug. 23.

“I’m busy getting things wrapped up with work and getting all the back-to-school shopping done,” she said. “I’m getting excited to compete and meet all the other women and hear what they’re doing.”

For the busy mother and titleholder, Rerick shared that even if she wins the national title, she’s still going to work on Tuesday and will see her kids off to school for a new year. She’s not in a panic about her clothing choices, and she’s ready to bring her platform to a national stage.

“I’m comfortable with myself, I’m ready,” she said.

The national pageant will not be televised, but tickets can be purchased for $24.99 to watch the livestream of the Mrs. America , Mrs. American , and Miss for America Strong pageants. Finals will be held at 5 p.m. Pacific Daylight Time.

Rerick will compete in Las Vegas for the national title, with the pageant scheduled for Aug. 19.
Special to On the Minds of Moms

Danielle Teigen has a bachelor's degree in journalism and management communication as well as a master's degree in mass communication from North Dakota State University. She has worked for Forum Communications since May 2015, first as a digital content manager before becoming the Life section editor and then deputy editor. She recently moved back to her hometown in South Dakota, where she works remotely for Forum Communications as managing editor of On the Minds of Moms.
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