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Newlyweds to spin the prize ‘Wheel’

By Staff | Mar 9, 2012

AP photo Kristen and Johnathon Eyler, along with baby Craig, show off their invitation to be contestants on 'Wheel of Fortune.’

Two Shepherdstown residents will take a turn at winning big, as they head to Hollywood to be contestants on the syndicated game show ‘Wheel of Fortune’ this week.

Johnathon and Kristen Eyler were selected to compete on the “Newlyweds” edition of the long-running game show after receiving a chance email last summer.

The couple, who attended South Carroll High School (Md.) together, were married after reconnecting via Facebook nearly a year and a half ago.

According to Johnathon, who received the email from the show’s casting producers in August, he initially assumed the invitation to audition was a hoax.

“I thought it was bogus,” he said.

The pair decided to investigate.

Kristen, who has been watching the show since childhood has applied for the show in the past and was elated to have a chance at a real audition.

“John got an email from out of the blue. I don’t know how,” she said.

After verifying the invite’s validity with the Beacon Hotel in Washington, D.C., the coupled traveled to the nation’s capital to audition.

According to Johnathon, they competed in a series of simulated games against more than 50 other possible contestants.

Though the couple made the cut to the top 25, John wasn’t so confident they would be picked.

“I thought I had blown it,” he said.

Six weeks after the audition, the couple received the letter officially inviting them to compete in the television broadcast of the show.

A mix of excitement and nerves, the couple expressed their feelings leading up to the taping.

“It’s unbelievable just to have the opportunity,” John said.

“The chances of us making it to the show were so slim that we’re just thankful,” Kristen said.

An eventful year, the couple welcomed their first child, Craig Eyler, on July 12, 2011, just one month before being contacted for the show.

“We’re just so blessed,” Kristen said.

Kristen said the pair’s family and friends may be the most excited for their appearance.

The couple’s church, Covenant Baptist, plans to have a viewing party for the couple’s episode, which will air sometime between June 4 and June 8.