A 1981 San Marino High School graduate recently won big on “Wheel of Fortune.”
Lisa Jackson Kipp, now of Denver, appeared on the May 11 broadcast of the national television show for “Denver Week,” winning a trip to Maui and $31,000.
“Everything about the experience was so positive,” she said. “Everyone who works there is so amazing. It was a dream come true – a bucket list experience.”
Kipp made it to the bonus round, but unfortunately wasn’t able to solve the puzzle, “A CUTE OUTFIT,” in time. She could have won an additional $33,000.
Kipp grew up in San Marino, moved during the 1980s and has lived in Denver for the past 24 years. She said she’s been watching “Wheel of Fortune” for as long as she can remember.
“I have loved it and watched it forever,” Kipp said.
Last week wasn’t the first time Kipp met “Wheel of Fortune” host Pat Sajak. She told him she loved him back in 1986 at a Chili’s restaurant in Glendale.
“I said, ‘I’m sorry to interrupt you, but I just have to tell you that I love you,’” Kipp explained, saying that Sajak was in the middle of a meal. “He said, ‘I think that we can have a meaningful relationship as well.’”
She said while the incident was brought up when she appeared on the game show, Sajak didn’t remember it.
Kipp said auditioning for “Wheel of Fortune” was a yearlong process. Last Mother’s Day weekend, she attended open auditions for the show in Denver.
“You fill out a form and get called,” Kipp said. “There were three sessions on Saturday and three sessions on Sunday. I went to all six and never got my name drawn. Then they said they’d take the names that weren’t called and put them in another random drawing. I got an email in August to audition at a hotel in Denver.”
She said there were 70 people when she went to the second session in August and about half of them were asked to stay to talk further with staff at the show and complete a test of puzzles.
“The next step, they said, ‘You’ll get a letter in the mail if we want you as a contestant,’” Kipp reported. “Three weeks later, I got the letter.”
She then taped the show on St. Patrick’s Day of this year at Sony Pictures Studios in Culver City. Her husband, Jeff Kipp, and mother, Noelle Jackson, accompanied her.
“It tapes right through so it goes pretty quick,” Kipp said, adding that they taped all of the shows for “Denver Week” on the same day.
She said she really got to know all of the contestants of “Denver Week” as they all were filling out paperwork or spinning the wheel. Kipp hosted a viewing party on the night her show aired and attended another’s viewing party on the following night.
Kipp is a flight attendant for United Airlines and has two children, Casey, 23 and Taylor, 21. Her father, Bill Jackson, still lives in the Los Angeles area.