Kenzie Petty Wins Survivor Season 46 — a Week After Revealing She’s Expecting a Baby

In an unpredictable and thrilling conclusion to Survivor’s record-breaking 46th season,

Kenzie Petty, who is expecting her first baby in September, is the winner of ‘Survivor’ season 46. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, KARA PERRY; ROBERT VOETS/CBS)
Kenzie Petty, who is expecting her first baby in September, is the winner of ‘Survivor’ season 46. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, KARA PERRY; ROBERT VOETS/CBS)

Kenzie Petty emerged victorious, securing the title of Sole Survivor just a week after announcing she is expecting her first child. The win caps off a season noted for its strategic gameplay, unexpected twists, and a significant number of players being voted out with hidden immunity idols.

A Season Marked by Historic Idol Plays

Season 46 of Survivor will be remembered for breaking the series record for the most players voted out with idols. Hidden immunity idols, a staple of the game since their introduction in Season 11 in 2005, are typically a lifeline for contestants facing elimination.

However, this season saw five players — Jem, Hunter, Tiffany, Venus, and Q — sent home despite possessing these powerful tools. This unprecedented series of events added an extra layer of unpredictability and excitement to the game, keeping both players and viewers on edge.

The Road to the Finale

The path to the final three was anything but straightforward. The penultimate episode, aptly titled “Friends Going to War,” featured intense competition as the final five contestants vied for a spot in the climactic tribal council.

Maria, a formidable competitor with three immunity challenge wins under her belt, was seen as the biggest threat. Recognizing this, Kenzie and Liz formed a strategic alliance to prevent Maria from securing a fourth immunity win, which would have tied her for the most won by a female contestant in Survivor history.

The final five: Kenzie, Maria, Liz, Ben and Charlie. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, CBS)
The final five: Kenzie, Maria, Liz, Ben and Charlie. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, CBS)

Their combined efforts were successful, allowing Kenzie to win the crucial immunity challenge and ultimately leading to Maria’s elimination.

As Maria left for the jury, Kenzie expressed her admiration, stating, “I want to be you when I grow up. You literally would have wiped the floor with us.” This heartfelt moment underscored the deep respect and competitive spirit that defined the season.

Fire-Making Challenge Decides the Final Three

The final four immunity challenge brought another surprise victory, this time for Ben, a musician who had flown under the radar for much of the game. His win meant he had to choose who would accompany him to the final tribal council.

Ben selected Charlie, a law student with a penchant for Taylor Swift, leaving Kenzie and Liz to battle it out in the fire-making challenge for the last spot in the final three.

Kenzie triumphed over Liz, earning her place in the final three alongside Ben and Charlie. Liz, affectionately known for her love of Applebee’s, was sent to the jury after a valiant effort.

The Final Tribal Council

As the final three — Kenzie, Charlie, and Ben — prepared to face the jury, they each reflected on their journey and the strategies that had brought them to this pivotal moment.

Liz lost the final four fire-making challenge. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, ROBERT VOETS/CBS)
Liz lost the final four fire-making challenge. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, ROBERT VOETS/CBS)

Kenzie, a salon owner who had postponed her wedding to compete on Survivor, highlighted her social game and strategic alliances. Charlie emphasized his loyalty and the relationships he had built, while Ben pointed to his challenge wins and under-the-radar gameplay.

The jury, consisting of their former competitors, listened intently before casting their votes. In the end, Kenzie won with five jury votes, narrowly edging out Charlie, who received three votes. Ben did not receive any votes.

A Life-Changing Year for Kenzie

Kenzie’s victory was particularly poignant given her personal journey. After delaying her June 2023 wedding to compete, she returned home from Fiji and married her fiancé, Jackson Petty, in September 2023. Their story captured the hearts of viewers, adding a layer of personal triumph to her game victory.

In a delightful twist, Kenzie announced just a week before the May 22 finale that she and Jackson are expecting their first child in September 2024.

Sharing the joyous news on Instagram, Kenzie wrote, “I’ve gotten really good at keeping secrets and going on adventures this year, but it’s finally the perfect day to tell y’all WE’RE HAVING A BABY!! Sweet lil Petty popping up in September.”

Legacy of Season 46

Survivor Season 46 will be remembered not only for its historic gameplay but also for the compelling personal stories that unfolded.

Charlie, Ben and Kenzie made it to the final three. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, CBS)
Charlie, Ben and Kenzie made it to the final three. (PHOTO: VIA PEOPLE, CBS)

Kenzie Petty’s journey from a bride-to-be postponing her wedding to a triumphant Sole Survivor and soon-to-be mother encapsulates the resilience, strategy, and emotional depth that have made Survivor a beloved television phenomenon for over two decades.

As fans look forward to Season 47, the legacy of Season 46 will undoubtedly endure, highlighting the unpredictable and dynamic nature of the game and the profound personal transformations it can inspire.

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