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'Price is Right' to feature Willmar, Minn., woman

WILLMAR -- Nichole DeLuna of Willmar can't tell anyone how the show ended, but she can say that she won about $9,000 in prizes when she was chosen as a contestant on "The Price is Right" game show.

The show featuring DeLuna will be aired at 10 a.m. Thursday on Twin Cities television station WCCO.

DeLuna traveled to California in January as part of a group of 15 adult relatives. They were able to get guaranteed tickets to "The Price is Right," hosted by Drew Carey, because of the size of their group. They also attended a taping of the "Ellen" show, starring Ellen DeGeneres.

DeLuna said she had organized the trip.

"It was an amazing experience," she said.

At "The Price is Right," the whole group wore blue T-shirts they'd had made at Rambow Inc. in New London. They had an outline of Minnesota on them and said, "Drew, we flew from Minnesota to see you."

"It blew me away that I got picked," she said. "It was fun; it was an experience of a lifetime."

The group of six siblings and nine cousins from the Holmquist family also hit Rodeo Drive and went to the beach, she said.

They almost canceled the trip, DeLuna said, because her grandmother had died the week before they were to leave. But the group knew that she had been excited about their plans and they decided she would not have wanted them to cancel.

"I believe she was kinda looking over me," she said.

DeLuna said she played a game called Pick-A-Pair in which she had to choose two items which had the same price. She will have to pay taxes on her prizes.

DeLuna, 34, works as a bookkeeper at Westside Liquor in Willmar and as a waitress at The Oaks. She is married and has two teenage children.

Linda Vanderwerf

I cover education issues for the West Central Tribune and have worked for the paper since 1995. I have worked in journalism since 1981.

Follow me on Twitter: @lindavanderwerf

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