BALTIMORE (AP/WJZ) — A single Powerball ticket sold in Maryland is the winner of an estimated $731.1 million jackpot, the first to get the top prize in months.
Thanks to math and bad luck, lottery players had another shot at a giant jackpot Wednesday night that earlier had been estimated at $730 million, but it grew even further based on final ticket sales. Following the win, the new jackpot drops to an estimated $20 million for the next drawing Saturday.READ MORE: COVID-19 In Maryland: Two More Mass Vaccination Sites Open Monday
The winning ticket for Wednesday’s jackpot was sold in at Coney Market in Lonaconing, a small community located in Allegany County in northwestern Maryland.
WJZ spoke to a man in the town who said he knows who the winner is but does not want to say because the family will likely remain anonymous as they claim their prize. The town’s mayor said he does not know who won.
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News of the winning ticket caused a buzz in the town of around 1,200 people Thursday.
“You usually see winners in big cities or big states like California, not a local place like this,” said Richard Ravenscroft, the owner of Coney Market.
The store will get a $100,000 bonus from the Maryland Lottery for selling the winning ticket.
Ravenscroft said he plans to give some of the money to staff and invest the rest in the building.
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A $2 million ticket was sold in Washington County at AC&T #130 in Hagerstown, Maryland. The store will get a $5,000 bonus from the Maryland Lottery for selling the ticket.
The Powerball jackpot was the fifth-largest U.S. lottery jackpot ever, and it came only a day after nobody won the even-larger Mega Millions prize, which now stands at $970 million.
Winning numbers for Wednesday night’s Powerball drawing were: 40-53-60-68-69 and a Powerball of 22.
It was the first time both lottery jackpots topped $700 million. The biggest prize was a $1.58 billion Powerball jackpot won by three people in 2016.
No one had won either of the jackpots since mid-September, allowing the prizes to grow steadily for months. Such a long stretch without a winner is rare but also reflects the incredibly small odds of winning — 1 in 292.2 million for Powerball and 1 in 302.5 million for Mega Millions.
The prizes listed are for winners who choose an annuity option, paid over 30 years. Most winners opt for cash prizes, which for Mega Millions would be $716.3 million and $546.8 million for Wednesday’s Powerball. After the Powerball win, the new jackpot has a $15 million cash value.
Those prizes also would be subject to federal taxes, and most states would take a cut as well.
Lottery officials said Wednesday’s winner will take home the largest prize in the state’s history, surpassing the previous record in 2012. At that time, an anonymous group called The Three Amigos took home a $218.6 million share of a $656 million Mega Millions jackpot.
The trio — two teachers and an administrative support staff member — had “modest” dreams, officials told WJZ. Out of the other 59 tickets they bought, they won $1.
Mega Millions and Powerball are both played in 45 states as well as Washington, D.C., and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Powerball also is offered in Puerto Rico.MORE NEWS: House Fire Reported In Columbia
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