Meet the Price Is Right superfan who just set the show's Plinko record
Ryan Belz may be the world's biggest fan of The Price Is Right — and he just set the record for the most lucrative daytime Plinko victory on the show's 45-year history.
"It is literally a dream come true," the 23-year-old recent Penn State graduate, told As It Happens host Carol Off.
"[I've] been a huge fan ever since I was little watching it with my grandparents any day that I was home from school sick, or even working my Penn State schedule around it so I wouldn't miss an episode."
So when his friends invited him to join them on their spring break trip to California, he knew this was his chance.
There is nothing better than Plinko in the world. Nothing. Nothing.- Ryan Belz
"I already knew the first chance I got to go to California the only thing that I cared about doing was going to a taping of The Price Is Right," he said.
They made it in time for the afternoon screening, and he did his best to wow the producers backstage, giving his best impression of the game show's announcer, George Gray — which he repeated for As It Happens' listeners.
The producer, Belz said, "was speechless."
The show got started, and Belz got asked to "come on down."
The superfan, beside himself with excitement, took his place in the show's famous contestants' row. The first item was a digital camera.
"While I was out in line I kept going on and on about how I have a crush on one of the models, Amber, and I turn around and there she is and she gave me the biggest hug and kiss and it threw me off so bad," Belz said.
"I literally lost it. I didn't know what to bid on the camera. Everyone's telling me to bid one dollar, so I bid the famous one dollar on the digital camera that came up and made it on stage."
Immediately, Belz started to freak out, running around in circles, high-fiving the audience members, and screaming with excitement — much to the amusement of the show's host Drew Carey.
Then Belz learned he was going to play Plinko — the classic Price Is Right game where contestants have to guess correct digits in the prices of prizes to earn chips, which they then take to the top of a game board and drop into slots, where they travel down to reveal winning amounts.
"Literally, I lost it. That's like the best game ever. There is nothing better than Plinko in the world. Nothing. Nothing."
A Price is Right contestant broke the Plinko record this morning!!<br><br>I don't think I've ever been more happier for anyone in my whole life... <a href="https://t.co/YSzmY9RGmn">pic.twitter.com/YSzmY9RGmn</a>—@JenXperience
As a longtime Target store employee, Belz said he had an easy time guessing the prices. But when it comes to the chips, that's all luck.
On his first chip, he got $10,000 — the highest you can get in one drop.
"And I'm like, OK, that's great. If I don't get anything else, I'll be content," he said.
On the second chip — $1,000.
The third — $10,000 again.
"And I literally can't," he said. "Like, I thought it was a dream."
His second-last chip garnered him $500, then he hit the $10,000 again with his final chip — for a total $31,500.
When Carey told him he set the new daytime record, Belz became momentarily speechless, staring at the host in disbelief, his mouth agape.
"At that point, oh, I was gone," he said. "Literally gone."
Belz said he'll use some of his winnings to celebrate, but most will go to paying off his student loans from Penn State, where he served as president of Penn State Students For Trump.
And as for his future plans?
"My ultimate dream is to be an on-camera meteorologist or do weather — or if Drew ever wants to retire, you know, I could take over his hosting job."
With files from Associated Press