Joan Vassos leaving to film ‘The Golden Bachelorette’ — “Excited, nervous, overpacked”


The Golden Bachelorette cameras are about to start rolling, and Joan Vassos is apparently ready to begin her own journey to find love.

Joan took to Instagram on Wednesday, June 12 and posted a video of herself packing a suitcase in her Rockland, MD, home.


“Excited, nervous, and overpacked… but, mostly ready to get this golden journey started,” Joan, 61, captioned the video.

“Feeling all the feels as I pack up to start my next chapter at the Bachelor Mansion,” she continued.

“I’ve never been this vulnerable and grateful at the same time. I’m thankful to have the most supportive friends, family and viewers a golden girl could ask for.”

Joan said while she’s “not sure what this journey holds,” she’s ready for anything.

“If it’s anything like my suitcase, it’s sure to be FULL of surprises! Here I go…” Joan concluded.

Joan also added a rose emoji to the conclusion of her post.

In the video, Joan revealed that she was “getting ready to leave tomorrow” for the show.

Joan joked about how her bedroom was “a disaster” while she was trying to get her belongings together.

“I have no idea what to bring because I don’t know what any of the dates are,” Joan said. “[My grandson] Maverick is back there. He is learning how to crawl, and I think by the time I get back in seven weeks, he’s going to know how!”

Joan then broke down into tears, saying, “I’m going to miss it. This is all bittersweet because I’m leaving my family for seven weeks — and that’s a little scary — but, you know, I’ll come back and maybe have the love of my life and someone to share my great life with!”


Joan proceeded to show that she had one suitcase filled with shoes.

“I’m a little embarrassed,” she quipped in the video. “I have no idea what the weather is like this time of year in California, so I’m bringing a huge variety of clothes. I actually have three full suitcases, which is ridiculous.”


Joan said her family was going to join her in California for a couple of days to shoot some promos.

“So you’re going to meet my family, too, and I’m excited about that!” Joan gushed. “I’m so proud of them and it gives me a couple more days with them, so I love that. So, see you in L.A.!”

The 61-year-old mother, grandmother and school administrator signed off by blowing a kiss and declaring, “Stay golden!”

Joan’s family and friends just threw her a send-off party for Joan ahead of her The Golden Bachelorette adventure.

Joan’s The Golden Bachelorette season is set to premiere this fall on ABC.

The Golden Bachelorette will air 90-minute episodes on Wednesday nights at 8PM ET/PT this fall, but an exact premiere date for the series and Joan’s cast of bachelors have yet to be officially announced.

Joan wrote to fans on May 15 on Instagram, “The first Golden Bachelorette… I truly can’t believe it! I’m positively overwhelmed by the love and support you are all sending my way. Thank you @abc for picking me and @bachelornation for rooting for me!”

“As I embark on this journey, I hope to make you all proud, follow my heart, and have a lot of fun along the way,” she continued. “I’m honored to represent all of the golden ladies out there, turns out we aren’t invisible after all.”

After quitting Gerry Turner’s The Golden Bachelor season last year for the sake of her daughter’s mental health back at home, Joan still found dating to be “hard,” and then she was announced as The Golden Bachelorette star in May.

“If it ends up in engagement, I’m open to that,” Joan told CNN on May 14. “I do believe this process works. I’ve seen it work for so many couples on The Bachelor, so I believe in the process. If it ends up in engagement, that’s great.”

Joan elaborated, “I probably won’t rush into a marriage right away — and not only because of what happened with Gerry and Theresa. I think it takes some time to really get to know somebody. Out in the wild, in the real world, you need to spend some time there.”

ABC said she’ll bring “grace and charm” to viewers’ television screens this fall.

“She is a remarkable woman whose life has been defined by her resilience, zest for adventure and strong family values. It was those family values that led to her heartbreaking decision to leave The Golden Bachelor,” ABC teased.

“Despite that and other challenges she’s faced along the way… [Joan] remains an embodiment of strength and grace as a devoted mother of four, grandmother of two, and school administrator, while finding solace in the music of Elton John, spending time with her dog, and cooking.”


On The Golden Bachelor: The Women Tell All late last year, Joan got emotional when watching her journey back on the show, and she told host Jesse Palmer how she felt really bad about disappointing and hurting Gerry.

“If circumstances had been different and you stayed, you think it might’ve worked out with Gerry?” Jesse asked the bachelorette.

“I think we had a good chance,” Joan replied.

“Gerry helped make me feel visible. He looked at me and he cared about what I was saying and he wanted to get to know me. Society makes us feel like we’ve had out chance, we’ve had our children, and now it’s time to support the next generation and kind of take a backseat. And Gerry opened my heart.”

Joan told The Wrap in November 2023 that, after leaving Gerry during Week 2 of The Golden Bachelor season, she briefly considered returning to the show and resuming filming once she helped her daughter because she felt like she had “unfinished business.”

However, Joan soon came to realize that her daughter’s mental health was still suffering and she needed to stay by her side as she struggled with postpartum depression.

Even though Joan didn’t return to The Golden Bachelor, she admitted to Jesse on The Women Tell All that she “held out hope” Gerry would also quit the show and chase her down.

“I did think a couple times maybe I would come around the corner, coming home from work, and [Gerry] would be sitting on my front porch,” Joan confessed.

Joan said she sometimes caught herself thinking about what could have been with Gerry.

“I went from wanting to find somebody to craving it now. It was such a good feeling and I’m working hard to find it; I’m not giving up,” Joan shared.

Joan took to Instagram shortly after The Golden Bachelor episode featuring her exit aired on ABC, and she hinted that she’d like to continue her journey to find love on TV, writing, “Sometimes the timing doesn’t work out with finding love. I hope one day I will get the chance at love again.”

Gerry ultimately selected Theresa Nist as his winner and the couple got engaged during the November 2023 season finale.

The Golden Bachelor couple got married in a live televised special dubbed The Golden Wedding on January 4 on ABC, but they announced their decision to divorce just three months later on April 12.


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About The Author:
Elizabeth Kwiatkowski

Elizabeth Kwiatkowski is Associate Editor of Reality TV World and has been covering the reality TV genre for more than a decade.

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