What does the PCH Prize Patrol do if the winner isn’t home?
When people ask, “What does the Prize Patrol do if the winner isn’t home?” I often tell the story of the weekend we spent near Houston, Texas, when neighbors told us that our $10 Million SuperPrize winner Pam Barton “might be home soon, or she might not be home for days.”
We had a large crew with us – from Publishers Clearing House, from our ad agency and from Primalux, our video production company. The thought of flying everyone back to New York on Friday, then returning to Houston a few days later did not make economic sense. So we booked a bunch of rooms at a hotel nearby where we could comfortably keep an eye on the winner’s home.
The whole weekend was like an interminable reconnaissance mission. Todd Sloane and I shared the challenge with Matt Lauer and Katie Couric on NBC’s Today Show – without divulging our exact location. We spent hours driving back and forth to the winner’s neighborhood to see if there was any sign of life. No luck. So we had another meal. Then another. Then another.
On Sunday night we left a phone message at the winner’s home, that a courier service had an important parcel to deliver Monday morning – if it was possible for someone to receive it. Sure enough: it turned out to be possible. A haltingly curious Pam Barton called at 7:30 AM on Monday to say that she could receive the parcel – whatever it was and from whomever it was – at 8:30.
While Pam was suspicious, she had received a hint from a neighbor that the “courier” could be Publishers Clearing House. “Drats!” we thought. “Every neighbor had promised not to spill the beans!”
Nonetheless, Pam’s “winning moment” turned out to be a great one. No matter how prepared you think you might be to receive a PCH Prize Patrol visit, the excitement of the actual event far exceeds one’s imagining. She almost fainted against the door jamb as we presented balloons, roses and a giant cardboard Big Check that declared her the winner of $10 Million.
We learned later that Pam came awfully close to NOT winning that SuperPrize. She was inclined to NOT mail in her sweepstakes entry that had arrived in the mail. But a good friend urged her to enter saying “You’ve got nothing to lose — and maybe millions to gain.”
That’s good advice, and it’s advice I would give to YOU: Enter the Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes! You could win! If you don’t enter, you will lose for sure.
A simple click on this link to pch.com will get you started.
PCH PRIZE PATROL
p.s. Pam Barton and I have remained good friends. In the picture above, Pam and I are at a New York restaurant. Winning at the Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes has enabled Pam to travel the world and enjoy the finer things in life.