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Sandy Journal

Survey says, Newman family shows the love on ‘Family Feud’

Oct 26, 2018 12:48PM ● By Jana Klopsch

Siblings L to R: Joe Newman, Dave Newman, Michelle Ellsworth, host Steve Harvey, Lisa Aldridge and Ken Newman. (Photo Courtesy Nicole Winer/BWR Media Relations)

By Heather Lawrence | heather.lawrence@mycityjournals.com

Have you ever wanted to be on a game show? Lisa Aldridge had. Aldridge, who was raised in Sandy, got four of her other siblings together to audition for the game show “Family Feud.” After making a fun audition tape, waiting several months and doing many mock rounds, they were chosen for the show. They flew to LA and won $20,000 on three episodes of “Family Feud” that aired on KJZZ in October. 

Ken Newman, the team captain for the family, said it all started when the “Family Feud” game show auditions came to the Sandy South Towne Expo Center. “The audition process is elaborate. We started the process in January 2017 (Aldridge remembers it as November 2016). First, you have to submit an audition tape. For our video, we dressed up as superheroes. And we got a callback,” said Newman.

“They’re looking for people with a lot of energy, people who will be fun to watch and not freeze on camera. So we were pretty enthusiastic. We were invited to the mock round in Utah. There were a lot of people there. They taped it and sent it to the studio. Since I was the team captain, I was supposed to hear back in six to eight weeks. But eight weeks passed, and so we just thought, ‘Well, that was fun but we missed it,’” said Newman. 

Aldridge had really wanted to be on the game show. “It was me who said we should do this. I thought my siblings would say they didn’t have time. But they all said they wanted to do it, so when we auditioned, we went all out,” Aldridge said.

They hadn’t missed their chance. “About 12 weeks after that first audition, my brother Ken sent out a text to all of us saying that the producers saw our tape and wanted us to be on the show! There were about a thousand people there that day, and only 10 percent make it through, and we had made it through. I guess it just took longer than they thought it would,” Aldridge said. 

But scheduling issues arose. “We’re all adults with our own lives, kids and jobs. You wouldn’t believe how hard it is to coordinate that. So even though the producers sent us several dates, none of them worked for us. We thought we had missed our chance again. That was April 2017,” said Aldridge. 

And then, the best birthday present ever. “I got an email from the producers on Lisa’s birthday with more options for dates. I sent texts to my brothers and sisters, and this time there was a date that worked. We replied as fast as we could and got scheduled for the show,” said Newman. 

In March 2018, five Newman siblings — Joe, Ken, Lisa, Michelle and Dave — were flown out to Hollywood where the show is filmed (other siblings Laura and Jeff couldn’t make it). “They put us up in a 5-star hotel and brought us to the studio. They tape four episodes a day, so we were there from 9 a.m. until about 5 p.m. taping,” Aldridge said.

The siblings built new memories. “We’re an energetic and loud bunch to begin with, and for TV they want you to be really enthusiastic. At one point, my brother Joe jumped up and touched his feet at Steve Harvey’s request. And my sister Lisa hit the buzzer so hard that on her next turn Steve stood back away from it,” Newman said.

The family had to stay quiet about the details until the episodes aired on Oct. 3, 4, and 8. But the results are in! The Newman siblings were on three episodes, won twice and were defeated once, and won a “Fast Money” round, which garnered them $20,000 total. 

Aldridge said that even though the process was long and there was a lot of waiting, it was all worth it. “The other contestants on the show were really nice and happy for you if you won. It was the most unique and amazing experience I’ve ever had.”

The best part of the experience? “We had so much fun! We’re all parents now, so when we get together it’s always with kids, we’re always wearing the parent hat. But we had so much fun as kids growing up, and while we were doing this, we were just us. Even if we hadn’t been on the show, the whole process of reconnecting as brothers and sisters was worth it,” Aldridge said.