After losing out on a lavish trip to Nashville thanks to a technicality on an episode of Wheel of Fortune, contestant Kristen Shaw will be getting her vacation after all. On a recent episode of the popular game show series which was taped back in October, Shaw was set up for an easy victory with most of the letters on the board already spelled out. Knowing the correct answer to be "right, football, left, Sally," Shaw listed out the words individually as "right, football, left, and Sally." The look on Shaw's face shows she immediately realizes her mistake of including the word "and" in her answer, and the sound of a buzzer a moment later confirmed the answer would not be accepted.
Per the game's official rules, contestants are permitted to only say the answer exactly as it appears on the board - conjunctions and extra words are not allowed. The slip of the tongue came at a heavy cost, as the technicality cost Shaw $1,950 and a fully-paid trip to Nashville, Tennessee valued at more than $8,000. "It was probably one of the most embarrassing experiences of my life," Shaw first said of the costly mistake, though the viral response to the blunder was not quite what she expected. With many Wheel of Fortune viewers feeling Shaw was robbed, the contestant said her Facebook page began to fill up with messages of support after the episode aired.
As it turns out, the people in Nashville were also watching the program. One of the many people to reach out to Shaw would include L. J. Whalen on the Nashville-based tourism company Adventureworks, who immediately got to work on giving Shaw the vacation many would say she deserves. Working with local companies, Whalen was able to put together a prize package for Shaw including plane tickets, hotel accommodations, and tickets to the Grand Ole Opry. "Our hospitality community is so close-knit, and we'd love to show Ms. Shaw and the nation that we're a lot more than boot stomping and beer drinking," Whalen said in a statement.
Shaw has taken Whalen up on the generous offer and plans to visit the city of Nashville with her mother in the near future. Additionally, she also expressed her surprise at the support from the Wheel of Fortune fans and the people of Nashville for everything they've done following the airing of the humiliating gaffe. "There is a lot of negativity in this world, but this shows me we are all human, we make mistakes, and for someone to want to give me a second chance, it just blew me away," Shaw said, noting she was so shocked at the support it left her "almost speechless."
As embarrassing as the incident probably was initially for Shaw at the time, many viewers likely related to her. It's such a simple mistake and it's something any one of us could potentially make in the same situation. At least the story has a happy ending. This news comes to us from USA Today.