Thursday, February 9, 2023

Price is Right fan fulfills lifelong dream on showcase showdown

September 6, 2001

DeAaron Easley didn’t have to pay the price to see a childhood dream come true - he guessed it.

After sitting through two tapings of the “Price is Right” game show, Easley was finally selected to come on down as a contestant the third time.

“Last year I didn’t get picked to be on the show, and in May I went and applied for more tickets,” Easley, a telecommunication junior, said. “I didn’t know I was going to be a player on the show, but I knew what to say in my interview beforehand.”

The audience goes through an interview process where the show’s producers pick a group of people who they feel have a lot of energy and contestants are then selected at random, Easley said.

Winning more than $30,000 in prizes, including a Ford Explorer, a trip to Dallas and a motorbike, Easley said his participation was a “numbing experience.”

“During the game, I wasn’t nervous on the outside, but on the inside I was Jell-O,” he said. “I was there physically, but really I couldn’t believe I was actually there playing the game.”

Easley credits his success on the show to years of watching and learning strategies for the game.

Beside winning the prizes, Easley was also able to meet the show’s host and producer, Bob Barker - someone Easley greatly anticipated meeting in person.

Barker isn’t a stranger to fans and longtime viewers. A publicist for the show said he even chats with the audience.

Fans have told Barker they’ve watched the show since they were babies, and it’s not even uncommon for three generations to be in the studio at the same time - all of who have watched the show since childhood.

With so many fans, Barker even appeared in the movie “Happy Gilmore” because of actor and comedian Adam Sandler’s fondness for the show.

Sandler told Barker that he chose him to be in ‘Happy Gilmore’ largely because he’d watched since childhood.

Like the famous actor, Easley was also brought up with the show. His mother, Caressa Easley, said her grandmother used to plop her son in front of the TV set while the show was on.

“He would actually sit there in his baby swing with her, and after he got older, no one could enter our door without playing the game,” Caressa Easley said. “He is one true fan. I can tell you that much.”

Easley said her son always wanted to be on the show.

“It was so exciting, and we had so much fun,” she said. “And for him to be able to fulfill a long, long life dream was just wonderful.”

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