It is said that lightning doesn’t strike twice in the same place.
Tell that to the growing number of lottery players at Texaco Food Mart at 2110 Highway 45 N. after word got around that a ticket bought there on June 21 hit a more than $500,000 jackpot.
Store manager Suraj Sumbi said he has seen a “significant” increase in customers coming in just to buy lottery tickets since, with this week’s sales approaching $3,000 — about 50 percent more than average.
“The lottery is really good for business especially right now after winning the lottery,” Sumbi said. “A lot of people are coming over here so we are doing good business.”
A Columbus woman won the Mississippi Match 5 jackpot worth $542,292.73.
The Jackpot winner, who signed a form with the Mississippi Lottery Corporation to remain anonymous, purchased 10 tickets for the June 21 drawing. After the numbers were announced, she discovered her seventh ticket had all the right ones, according to a press release from MLC.
“In disbelief, she called to her husband to look at the ticket,” the press release reads. “He thought she wanted him to kill a bug; but, in fact, it was to verify she’d hit all the winning numbers.”
Before getting the money, the winner had to travel to MLC headquarters in Flowood to claim the prize. Winners receive their prizes in a lump sum, said MLC communications director Meg Annison, and after federal and state taxes, the Columbus woman pocketed almost $396,000.
Match 5 is an in-state draw style game whereas Mega Millions and Powerball are played across 45 states. The lottery, introduced in Mississippi in 2019, also offers scratch-off games.
Annison said the half-million jackpot was among the biggest winners so far since the lottery began. Two Powerball tickets bought in Mississippi hit for $1 million, she said, and there’s been a $2 million Mega Millions winner.
Retailers receive 6 percent of ticket sales, with a $5,000 bonus for any ticket that hits a jackpot of $1 million or more.
Sumbi said Match 5 has become the most popular game at the Texaco.
“We do not sell that much on tickets [scratch-offs] anymore but we sell a lot in the lottery,” he said.
To play Match 5, players purchase a ticket of five play panels with numbers 1 through 35, then mark five of the panels to get their numbers.
Each panel represents one play. Players can also check the quick play box to receive some or all randomly generated numbers in the play.
Each ticket is $2.
There have been 331 Match 5 winners since the game started on April 28. 2021. Winning numbers are announced Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. The new numbers will be announced tonight at about 10.
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