May 20, 2020
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South Portland restaurateur is the latest Mainer to try to hit big on a TV game show

Chris Pizzello | Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP
Chris Pizzello | Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP
In this April 30, 2017, file photo, Alex Trebek speaks at the 44th annual Daytime Emmy Awards at the Pasadena Civic Center in Pasadena, Calif. A South Portland man will be the latest Mainer to try his luck when he competes on “Jeopardy!” Wednesday night.

A South Portland man will be the latest Mainer to try his luck ― and display his knowledge of all sorts of wildly divergent stuff ― when he competes on “Jeopardy!” Wednesday night.

The Portland Press Herald reports that Nathan Berger, a restaurateur and sommelier, will be a contestant on the episode airing Wednesday night.

The exact number of Mainers who have appeared on “Jeopardy!” or other popular television game shows through the years is probably impossible to determine, but Berger joins a flock of Mainers who have made their mark on these shows.

Berger will be the third Mainer this year to compete on the show, and at least the fourth since last fall. Tiffany Eisenhauer, a physician assistant from Freeport, appeared on one show in April, according to the Press Herald.

Old Orchard Beach bartender Dennis Coffey racked up $51,203 over the course of his three-episode run last November, while Augusta resident Jessica Garsed appeared on “Jeopardy!” and was stung by a very small error the month before.

She was penalized $1,600 for not adding an “s” to her answer of “Omaha Steaks” on one question, but Omaha Steaks agreed to donate that $1,600 to the charity of Garsed’s choosing, the Ronald McDonald House of Maine.

Bangor writer Allen Adams, editor of the Maine Edge and Bangor area actor, took third place with a $1,000 prize in the show that aired in October 2018.

Wheel of Fortune has also hosted a few Mainers. Bangor resident Ryan McLaughlin and former BDN staffer won more than $10,000 during an appearance there that aired in January.

The month before, Husson University graduate student and Queen City native Kristen Shaw narrowly lost out on winning after mistakenly adding the word “and” to one of her answers. Some of the show’s fans took to social media to complain that the rule she inadvertently violated was unfair.

Berger, meanwhile, won’t have quite the same experience as his predecessors. Jeopardy and another show, “Wheel of Fortune,” opted to tape without a studio audience in response to the pandemic, according to the Associated Press.

 


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