Iron County woman competes on Jeopardy! Thursday night

23-year-old Kalee Hernandez is a musician from Iron River and says she has always wanted to be on the show.
Published: May. 5, 2021 at 3:48 PM EDT
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IRON RIVER, Mich. (WLUC) - A 23-year-old Iron River musician has finally got to live out her dream, on the Jeopardy! stage.

“I’ve been trying to get on for five years,” said Kalee Hernandez, who has lived in Iron River most of her life.

And Who is Kalee Hernandez?

“I love Jeopardy. I love that you can be rewarded for learning things,” she explained.

Last September, Hernandez took the test again, that is required for vetting contestants. Then, she got called for a second test, which had never happened to her before.

“Based on that, I got called to an audition; They said you’re going to be in a pool for about 18 months, and I thought, ‘I won’t be on until I’m 50, at this point,’” she added.

But just a month later, Hernandez was told she needed to be in L.A. in three weeks. And then filming began.

“Sheer panic and then excitement,” she said.

She said Jeopardy films five episodes a day, two days a week and her show was the last one filmed of the day.

She said the hardest part for her, during the show, was not clicking the buzzer too quick, and not getting too panicked.

“A lot of thinking, over-thinking, mostly. It’s not anything like you would expect,” said Hernandez.

And while she isn’t spoiling the ending before it airs, she says the best take-away was meeting unique and intelligent people, including guest host, Bill Whitaker.

“I met some really great people; I met a lot of new friends that I can watch all week now,” she said.

You can watch Hernandez on Jeopardy! Thursday night, at 7:00 p.m. eastern/6:00 p.m. central on FOX UP.

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