‘Wheel Of Fortune’ returning with new shows and coronavirus-related changes

When “Wheel Of Fortune” returns for its 38th season on Monday, Sept. 14, it will do so on a set that incorporates new designs and guidelines to increase safety during pandemic conditions.

The game itself is still the same — except for an increase on the Bonus Wheel to $38,000 in honor the show’s years on the air — but other changes during its hiatus are a result of the coronavirus pandemic and the steps needed to ensure that everyone in the building during showtime is kept as safe as possible.

“Our challenge was not unique, to get back up and running in a way that is safe for everyone involved while making subtle improvements to make America’s Game even better,” said new executive producer Mike Richards in a written statement.

  • “Wheel Of Fortune” returns for its 38th season on Monday, Sept. 14, 2020 with new guidelines and set changes to keep everyone safe from the coronavirus. (Photo by Carol Kaelson)

  • “Wheel Of Fortune” returns for its 38th season on Monday, Sept. 14, 2020 with host Pat Sajak and hostess Vanna White as usual, but also new guidelines and set changes to keep everyone safe from the coronavirus. (Photo by Carol Kaelson)

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  • “Wheel Of Fortune” returns for its 38th season on Monday, Sept. 14, 2020 with host Pat Sajak and hostess Vanna White as usual, but also new guidelines and set changes to keep everyone safe from the coronavirus. (Photo by Carol Kaelson)

  • “Wheel Of Fortune” returns for its 38th season on Monday, Sept. 14, 2020 with host Pat Sajak and hostess Vanna White as usual, but also new guidelines and set changes to keep everyone safe from the coronavirus. (Photo by Carol Kaelson)

  • One change to the wheel on “Wheel Of Fortune” is that contestants now are given a “spinning cap” to place on the spoke of the wheel when they spin it. It’s one of several measures to keep everyone safe from the coronavirus. (Photo by Carol Kaelson)

  • “Wheel Of Fortune” returns for its 38th season on Monday, Sept. 14, 2020 with host Pat Sajak and hostess Vanna White as usual, but also new guidelines and set changes to keep everyone safe from the coronavirus. (Photo by Carol Kaelson)

  • “Wheel Of Fortune” returns for its 38th season on Monday, Sept. 14, 2020 with host Pat Sajak and hostess Vanna White as usual, but also new guidelines and set changes to keep everyone safe from the coronavirus. (Photo by Carol Kaelson)

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“I think we have accomplished that in a big way, and our fans can be comfortable knowing that they’re going to tune in to see the ‘Wheel of Fortune’ they love.”

The actual Wheel around which host Pat Sajak and contestants stand was redesigned to allow six feet between everyone in that spot on the stage. Hostess Vanna White has always practiced social distancing, standing over yonder to reveal the letters as contestants play the puzzle-solving game.

A new curved monitor now surrounds the Wheel and contestants are given their own “spinning cap” — a device that covers each spoke on the Wheel so that no one directly touches it to potentially spread germs.

The show is also teasing the fact that during the first two weeks of the show something happens that has never happened before in its history.

We know it’s not a “Self Potato” — Lolita set that record a decade ago — but fans following the show on social media are invited to watch and try to win a challenge based around that unprecedented event.