‘Wheel of Fortune’: Pat Sajak Explains the Most Difficult Part of Encountering Fans in Public

by Matthew Wilson

“Wheel of Fortune” host Pat Sajak has been on America’s TV screens for decades now. So he’s had plenty of run-ins with his fans over the years.

For the most part, Sajak admitted he hasn’t had any unpleasant encounters with fans. In fact, most of his fans seem to be pretty pleasant and most of the encounters are low-key affairs. But Sajak said the most difficult aspect of having fans is that he often doesn’t know how to act around them.

“It’s a funny thing. We’ve been on so long and have become so entrenched in people’s lives that the recognition is odd,” Sajak told the Television Academy Foundation. “Because like me, fairly lowkey. I’ll be traveling somewhere. I’ll be in Cincinnati because we went to see a ball game or something. And walk into some store and no one is surprised you’re there. ‘Hey Pat, how are you doing? Like the show.’ It’s not, ‘Hey wait a minute, what are you doing in some store in Cincinnati?’ It’s almost like you’re part of the family. There are people that have watched all their lives. And at dinner time and they watch with their family and we’re part of it. “

Sajak said he struggles to figure out if they’re a fan of the show or someone he knows in his own life. The game show host questions himself how friendly he should be.

“So the fans are pretty nice,” Sajak said. “The most difficult part for me is when I’m in the store and someone says ‘Hi Pat.’ I don’t know if it’s my kid’s teacher, I don’t know if it’s my neighbor, I don’t know if it’s somebody who just watches the show. I don’t exactly know how friendly to be back. Ya know, I don’t want to look like I’m weird. That’s always a problem.”

Pat Sajak Enjoys New York

As far as the best place to visit, Sajak enjoys visiting New York City. The game show host said the city is the easiest place to be if you’re famous. Often, people want to be alone so they don’t approach celebrities, giving them the same courtesy. If a fan recognizes Sajak in New York City, they’ll often just wave or honk their horns.

Meanwhile, the game show host said if he visits the Mid-West, fans will sometimes want to sit down and hang out with him. It can be difficult to manage his time in such encounters Sajak said.