With Friday’s Mega Millions jackpot upped to $1 billion by noon, locals were hopping onto the lotto craze.
The estimated $1 billion to be paid out over 20 years — with an immediate cash option of $565.6 million — is easily the largest jackpot in Mega Millions history and the second-largest in lottery history. It trails only the $1.586 billion Powerball jackpot in January 2016, according to Maryland Lottery and Gaming.
The winning numbers drawn Friday night are 15 23 53 65 70 and Mega Ball 7.
At the new Sheetz on Md. 140, cashiers and customers alike lined up to try their hand at not only the Mega Millions prize, but the $470 million Powerball and $600,000 Multi Match prizes at lunchtime on Friday.
“People have been buying tickets ever since Tuesday morning when it didn’t go off,” said Sheetz Manager Robin Perry from behind the cash register Friday afternoon. “They’re buying it by the $40s, the $100s. They’re buying it all.”
Westminster resident Patrick D’Anthony also bought tickets Friday afternoon. He said he plays the lotto fairly often and would help his friends and family if he won.
“I would definitely … pay off debt,” he said, tickets in hand. “A lot of money would go towards animal shelters and charities — and a new property for my fiancee and I.”
D’Anthony’s ideas were similar to many others that afternoon, who also said they would give their money away or help others.
“I’d probably give most of it away,” said Westminster resident Tim Smith. “I’d give it away a little at a time — so people don’t have to pay more taxes — and make the working people’s lives a little better.”
Another local, Debbie Baxter, said aside from paying off bills she would donate money to the Humane Society and invest, and Finksburg resident Cindy Knies said she would use her winnings to help her sister and father.