B y Jaime Thomas
The price was wrong, but that didn’t stop Bob Schoonmaker from celebrating his debut on the Price is Right in style.
An episode of the classic game show featuring the owner of Schoony’s Country Market aired Wednesday morning, months after the taping. Schoony’s charismatic and boisterous personality made him one of a few contestants out of 300 hopefuls when he was in Los Angeles this summer.
So on Wednesday, from 11 a.m. to noon, between 30 and 40 of Schoonmaker’s friends, family members, co-workers and regulars at the store gathered to take part in the big show. One woman even made the trek over from Lake George.
“It’s great fun—it’s great for the community,” Schoonmaker said. Eager watchers counted down the last few minutes before host Drew Carey opened up the screen, and everyone cheered loudly when the North Granville man was asked to “come on down.”
Whooping for himself and smiling broadly, Schoonmaker gave a commentary during the show of what he was being told to do on stage, and what was going on off camera.
“That guy was trying to get everyone to cheer. And when they wouldn’t cheer for him, I started running up and down the aisles,” he said with a laugh. When other contestants fared well, he led his audience at Schoony’s in booing; when he made a joke or good guess on the show, they all shouted in support.
Jennifer Kelley, a local dentist, said she came to the airing because she finds Schoonmaker to be amusing.
“I like to watch his antics, because he has plenty of them,” she joked. And Dan Whitney, who stops in the store every day for coffee, lauded its owner.
“Since he’s opened this store he’s done a fabulous job for our community. I can’t say enough good things about him,” Whitney said.
Though Schoonmaker was able to make it all the way to the showcase showdown, his $19,000 bet was far below the package’s actual price. Had he won, he would’ve been the owner of a new boat valued at $26,000, a trip to San Diego and a watch.
The other contestant guessed within $1,000 or so of his showcase, which consisted of a trips to San Francisco and Canada as well as several dirt bikes.
However, Schoonmaker was proud to win a pair of Jaguar sunglasses and the $9.03 in cash that will arrive 90 days after the airing.
“He’ll never cash it. It’ll hang up in the store forever,” his wife Dorie said, joking that a car or cappuccino machine, which were the other options, would’ve been a good alternative.
During the airing, Schoonmaker gave out free pizza and other prizes to those who joined him. He raffled off a snowboard to winner Frank Andrews and the polarized sunglasses to Suzanne McEachron. To see a video of him watching himself on TV, visit the Sentinel’s Facebook page.