Kelley Wentworth is one of the final six players for the show’s two-hour season finale airing Wednesday, Dec. 16 on CBS. She previously appeared on “Survivor” with her dad, Dale, of Ephrata.
For the current edition of CBS’s “Survivor,” Kelley Wentworth shared a key advantage with all the show’s other contestants: They knew what to expect. The entire cast is made up of returning players in this “Second Chance” season.
“The first time you play ‘Survivor,’ there’s just a learning curve. You don’t really know what you’re getting into,” said Wentworth, who lives on Queen Anne. “Going back a second time, I was ready to go and I was playing with people who all wanted to be there and were just as excited to be playing.”
She’s made it through the whole season to become one of the final six players for the show’s two-hour season finale airing Wednesday, Dec. 16, followed by a one-hour reunion show at 10 p.m.
8 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 16, CBS
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Wentworth’s second chance came a year after her first attempt, in which she played alongside her father, Dale Wentworth, of Ephrata. That first time didn’t go so well with Kelley getting voted off the island in the fifth episode (her father exited the next week). Before her eviction she received limited screen time to the point that she wasn’t recognized back home.
“When I’d be with my dad, people would be like, You’re the guy from ‘Survivor,’” Kelley said, but those same “Survivor” viewers didn’t recognize her.
To get on the “Second Chance” season, she had to campaign, competing against 32 other candidates for the season who were vying for 20 available slots. Fans voted for their favorites online.
“I was probably one of the people who had the longest road because I wasn’t on my first season as long,” said Wentworth, the Seattle marketing manager for First Aid Shot Therapy. She used her background in marketing to promote herself on social media sites, she posted a video on YouTube, gave interviews to “Survivor” fan podcasts and her father helped out, too. “My dad told me he printed off posters and was posting them in our hometown and going to casinos in Idaho, Washington and Oregon. I don’t know where all my face has been.”
For “Second Chance,” her profile is on the rise.
“Now I occasionally do get recognized in the grocery store,” she said. “It’s not huge, just once in a while, but now that my dad is not around people can see me on my own.”
Being on her own also gave the 29-year-old Wentworth the chance to employ new strategies while filming “Survivor: Second Chance” in Cambodia over the summer.
“It’s hard working with somebody else, it’s hard to focus on yourself and what you want to do,” Wentworth said. “I knew I wanted to make big moves but I didn’t want to come off as super-aggressive to people. I wanted to lay low and be a silent assassin.”
It helped that she found not one but two hidden immunity idols. Wentworth played one but holds a second immunity idol going into the finale, which she’s managed to keep a secret from her competitors.
If Wentworth does win the Sole Survivor title and the show’s $1 million prize, she plans to take her family on a relaxing vacation and then maybe buy a house.
“Do you know what the housing market is like in Seattle?” she said, laughing. “I definitely would use it toward a house or invest it in something.”