Chuck Howard was well aware that his wife, Kay, was a big fan of Cher.
They’ve been married for 45 years and were among the seven couples taking part in the inaugural Not So Newlywed Game at the Manteca Senior Center on Monday afternoon.
“We’ve seen Cher several times in concert,” Howard said.
Chuck and Kay were locked in a tiebreaker with Sandy and Gene Whitlock, who had a strong start in the game show reminiscent of the popular television game show, The Newlywed Game.
The only difference here was that these couples, for the most part, had been together for 40 years or more.
Brandy Clark, who is the recreation supervisor for the City of Manteca’s Parks and Recreation Department / Senior Center complex, served as the game show host.
One of the tiebreaking questions made possible from the Senior Center audience was: “Who is your wife’s favorite singer or band?”
Chuck Howard was all but certain that Kay would say Cher.
“I also knew she liked Celine Dion,” he said.
In the end, Howard guessed correctly. For their effort, Chuck and Kay received a gift basket that included a one-night stay at the Holiday Inn.
The Whitlocks, of course, took second place, getting coupons for McDonald’s Restaurant.
Manteca Police Chief Dave Bricker and his wife, Ruth, finished third, with Frank and Karen Faias placing fourth, and Jim and Peggy Spears claiming fifth.
Don Reed and Gloria Hudson were sixth while Augie and Trilly Holman came in seventh.
Reed is also a member of the Senior Advisory Committee.
“As a group, we brainstormed for ideas (on the game show),” he recalled.
Reed was pleased with the outcome of the Not So Newlywed Game. “It turned out better than expected,” he added.
The format followed that of the once popular game show.
In the first round, the wives were taken off the stage – in this case, one of the senior center rooms – while the husbands were asked three questions worth five points for a correct answer.
The husbands were asked: “What movie star does your wife resembles the most?”
Dave Bricker and Howard both said their wives resemble Liz Taylor. Their spouses agreed.
Gene Whitlock and his wife, Sandy, also scored on that question, agreeing on Shirley MacLaine.
The next question was multiple choice: “How often does your wife pick out your clothes – 10, 50, or 100 percent?”
Added Bricker: “Outside my (police) uniform, my wife picks out my clothes 100 percent of the time.”
They were also asked: “If I can change anything about my wife from the waist up, it would be…?”
Just to be on safe side, most of the husbands said they’d change “nothing” about their wives.
Each correct answer in the first round was worth five points.
The roles were reversed in the next round, with the husbands taken off stage and the wives given four questions worth 10 points for each correct answer.
They were also given a bonus question worth 25 points.
“If you’re behind, you had a chance to get back in (the competition),” said Clark.
The bonus question was: “If your husband was lost driving, he would, a.) pretend he wasn’t lost; b.) would stop and ask for directions; c.) blame you; d.) stop and buy a map.”
Yet only the two finalists got the bonus question correct.
Meanwhile, Reed was thrilled with the response of the crowd. He’s already looking forward to next year.
With it, he hopes, will come a whole new batch of Not So Newlywed couples.