5 things to know about “The Bachelorette(s),” starring Denver’s own Gabby Windey
Ensure your seatbelt is fastened and your tray table has a full bottle of wine at the ready, because the 19th season of “The Bachelorette” takes flight on July 11.
Well, technically this time around it will be called “The Bachelorettes.” In March, the reality franchise announced that both Gabby Windey, a nurse from Denver, and Rachel Recchia, a pilot from Florida, would co-star as the leading ladies in the upcoming season.
The announcement came after the women suffered exceptionally bad cases of “The Bachelor” blues during the most recent season of that show. Quick recap: Lead Clayton Echard begged both Windey and Recchia to stay after his top pick, Susie Evans, voluntarily left the competition only to later dump them and try to pursue things with Evans.
This time, the ladies have the power and based on preliminary teasers, it’s going to be an eventful journey. Here’s what you need to know about “The Bachelorettes” before take off Monday at 7 p.m. MST.
Who is Gabby Windey?
It can be easy to get lost amid the ever-rotating cast of hopeful singles on “The Bachelor” and “The Bachelorette” franchises, but Windey immediately stood out among the 30-plus women trying to date Echard with her sense of humor. (On the first night, for example, she brought a pillow with Echard’s picture on it so when her feet got tired she could sit on his face.)
Prior to reality TV, Windey was a cheerleader for the Denver Broncos and worked as an ICU nurse at UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital. In 2021, she became the first woman to ever be awarded the Pop Warner Humanitarian Award, usually given to National Football League players, for her work during the COVID-19 pandemic.
When it comes to dating, Windey is looking for someone who appreciates her independence, can match her energy and loves dogs. She’s the proud pet mom to a goldendoodle named Leonardo.
More from an ABC press release: “If he doesn’t have a personality, then it’s a hard pass. Her ideal man will challenge her, communicate his feelings and work hard to equally carry the weight of the relationship.”
Both Bachelorettes will be dating one group of guys.
“The Bachelorettes” has featured more than one leading lady only once before. In 2015, it pit two women against each other on the first night and made the men vote for who they most wanted to date and therefore be the bachelorette. (Ick.) Not so this time.
Both Windey and Recchia will reportedly date all the way to a potential engagement, but there will only be one group of guys from which they both get to choose.
Their options include Alec, a wedding photographer and self-proclaimed “lover boy” from Houston; Brandan, a bartender from California who goes to Disneyland every year for is birthday; Jacob, an Arizona mortgage broker who loves to camp at national parks but doesn’t eat cake; and Ryan, a “proud Botox enthusiast.”
Meet all the men here.
Windey and Recchia don’t plan to go for the same guys.
In interviews with People, the women said they tried to avoid canoodling with the same dudes this season – contrary to last season when they exclusively dated the same person.
“It’s only natural to be attracted to the same guys, here and there,” Windey told the magazine. “We’re human, but it would never be anything that Rachel and I couldn’t figure out on our own, especially always putting our relationship in the forefront of everything.”
“The Bachelorette” is back to jetsetting.
Both “The Bachelor” and “The Bachelorette” resumed filming in 2021 but in light of COVID-19, all the contestants were restricted to staying at resorts in New Mexico and California. The shows are known for their lavish, international adventures and and quite frankly, they just weren’t as interesting being limited to one place.
Gone are the days of COVID-19 restrictions, it seems. According to Reality Steve, TV’s No. 1 spoiler, this season takes “The Bachelorette” to Paris and Mexico at the very least. The latter is where overnight dates and the final rose ceremony take place. That’s in addition to hometown dates, which Reality Steve reports happen across the country. (We won’t spoil who they’re with or where just yet.)
This could be – say it with me – the most dramatic season yet.
They say it every season, but there’s still a lot to be figured out with two leads in a single season. One teaser suggests some of the men might decline a rose from Windey or Recchia because they want to date the other. Another clip shows Windey calling someone “unhinged.”
Whatever transpires, we’re here for it. See you every Monday at 7 p.m. MST on ABC with a full glass of vino.
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