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Halifax kin go on Family Feud

South Boston News
From left, the Bethel family, Darrius, Tierra, Chanel, Yevette and Linwood — with the show’s host, Steve Harvey (third from right)
SoVaNow.com / November 05, 2018


A Halifax family will pop up on TV screens Tuesday, Nov. 13 as contestants on Family Feud, the long-running syndicated game show starring comedian Steve Harvey. Back-to-back episodes are scheduled to air locally at 3 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. on WFXR-Roanoke, a Fox affiliate on Comcast Channel 812.

The new episode will feature members of Halifax’s Bethel family: sister and brother Tierra and Darrius Bethel, cousin Chanel Dickerson, and Linwood and Yevette Bethel of Halifax, parents and the family’s elder generation. Regardless of age, Bethel family members share one thing: love of fun.

“We didn’t go into this thinking we were going to make it far,” said daughter Tierra Bethel, who grew up in Halifax, graduated from Halifax County High School in 2008 and now lives in Raleigh, N.C. “When we auditioned, it was with the mindset we would go in and have fun, as we always do as a family.”

Tierra, a big fan of Family Feud and its famous host, got the ball rolling by sending in an audition tape to the show’s producers a year ago. It was a video of the family playing “Potato Pooper,” a play-action game they discovered online. The zany antics of the Bethels as they acted out the potato game in their pajamas caught the eye of producers, who asked members of the family to travel to Charlotte, N.C. in November 2017 for a live audition.

“It was like a speed-dating scenario, where you hurry up and show that you’re a crazy, fun outgoing family,” explained Tierra. The audition included a run-through of a mock game of Family Feud, staged on the show’s familiar set. The Bethels didn’t hear back from the show for months, and Tierra said everyone thought that was the end of it.

But she said she got a message on Feb. 15, saying the family had been chosen to appear on the show. Other members of the family “didn’t believe me, so I basically had to screen shot the actual invitation” to send around as proof.

The Bethel family went out to Los Angeles for filming June 3-6. “It was awesome from beginning to end,” said Tierra. “The staff treated us as if we were celebrities, making sure we were comfortable and had everything we needed …. We didn’t want for anything.”

Family members are not allowed to talk about how their appearances went — the Bethels vied for the $20,000 grand prize given out with each episode. But Tierra said the experience was a blast: “We laughed until our heads hurt. It was just a great feeling.”

Meeting Steve Harvey in person was another overwhelming experience. A huge fan, Tierra said the Family Feud host was even more charming and generous than even she had expected: “Everyone he talked to, it was clear that he cared and was interested in what they were saying,” said Tierra.

She added that she has come into contact with public figures before, as a marketing professional in the Raleigh area, and “he was the most personable celebrity I’ve ever met.

“I wanted the actual experience of meeting Steve Harvey, more than anything,” she added.

Aside from Tierra, brother Darrius lives in Danville, and their cousin Chanel is assistant chief of police in Washington, D.C. Linwood and Yevette Bethel, both in their fifties, live in Halifax.

While Tierra can’t say how the local family fared on Family Feud, she readily admits that playing the team quiz game — which debuted in 1976 and has run on TV nearly uninterrupted for decades — is a lot harder than it looks.

“I will definitely say it’s a lot easier watching on the couch. After doing it in person, I’m not going to be judgmental about anything that anyone has ever said on the show before.”



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