Come on down, Creed Hostetter!
This past February, Price Is Right announcer George Gray barked that immortal directive, sending the absolutely delightful Minneapolis man on an epic winning spree.
"I have been a fan since I was little kid, and just the opportunity to go was amazing," says Hostetter, who attended a taping of the beloved game show on a whim while vacationing in Los Angeles. "Everyone at The Price is Right is so kind and funny -- it was truly a surreal experience."
After his name was called, Hostetter began his lucky run by craftily guessing $701 on the price of a smartphone, thus giving him the highest bid by $1. Retail price? $749. "Oh my God! I made it!" the elated contestant shouted during the episode, which aired for the first time Tuesday. Hostetter shook hands with host Drew Carey, who asked, "Are you feeling lucky?"
You better believe he was.
Hostetter's game would be the The Punch-A-Bunch, wherein players punch through cubbies to discover cash prizes. His first punch yielded $1,000, but he decided to play on. The next one revealed a downgrade, just $500. Hostetter opted to go all-in on the results of his third punch: $5,000 plus a fate-determining wheel spin! He proceeded to crush it, as his spin landed squarely on 100, meaning an extra $1,000 and a rendezvous with the Showcase round.
Hostetter's opponent, Laura, was presented with the first Showcase prize package: a 14-inch Asus laptop, a six-night trip to Milan, Italy, along with $2,000 pocket cash, and a brand-new Mazda 3. Having already won a car that day, Laura passed, allowing Hostetter to place his $26,800 bid. Laura then bid $28,000 on her suite of potential prizes: a tear-drop camper and a Jeep Compass to pull it.
The difference between Hostetter's guess and the actual value? $6,854, besting Laura's estimation of her prize package by about $6,000. Hostetter, shaking with excitement, bee-lined to give Carey a hearty bear-hug. In total, our giddy hometown contestant lassoed prizes valued at $40,577.
"It was definitely one of the best experiences of my life, and Drew Carey is hilarious!" Hostetter -- who works at a staffing company in Eagan -- says of the "whirlwind" experience. "I honestly never thought I would win, let alone even get inside [the building]."
You can watch Hostetter's entire episode here; he gets called down at about the 24-minute mark.