$500 million Powerball record spurs local sales

Wednesday, November 28, 2012
Cheyenne Highley of Nevada, right, buys a Missouri Powerball ticket Tuesday afternoon from clerk Amanda Johnson at the 1518 E. Austin Blvd. Cash-N-Dash store, where sales had been increasing in anticipation of tonight's $500 million drawing. It is the biggest jackpot ever offered in the game. James R. Campbell/Daily Mail

By James R. Campbell

Nevada Daily Mail

Having reached a record $500 million, tonight's Powerball drawing was getting a good deal of action at area convenience stores Tuesday afternoon.

"When it's a big pot, that's when people play," said Cash-N-Dash Manager John Bryant at 1518 E. Austin Blvd. "Three or four out of every 10 of our customers play something whether it's Mega Millions, the Missouri Lotto, Pick 3, Pick 4 or Show Me Cash.

"A lot buy scratchoffs so they don't have to wait for a drawing."

Fastrip clerk Delia McQuay at 402 W. Austin reported "more Powerball buying than anything else because of the humongous jackpot.

"It's quite a bit higher than normal right now and there are always lots of scratchoffs around the holidays. It depends on what day of the week it is. The Powerball is drawing a lot of interest," she said.

Tickets will be on sale until 8:59 p.m. tonight.

Ryan Herren, a clerk at Emery's Conoco Truck Plaza at Deerfield, said his customers had quietly demonstrated their growing interest. "They don't say anything about it, they just play," Herren said Tuesday.

"Powerball has jumped up from last week. The day before the drawing, we do really well. We have scratchoff customers who come in and spend $50 a day. Mega Millions are on Tuesdays and Fridays and they'll buy one for the next drawing. It ebbs and flows with the Lotto and others. It's pretty constant.

"With the scratchoffs, they get self-fulfillment or disappointment almost instantaneously."

Missouri Lottery Executive Director May Scheve Reardon said in a Tuesday news release that the Powerball record had come about somewhat unexpectedly. "Due to strong sales by the 44 lotteries that offer Powerball, the jackpot for Wednesday night's drawing has increased from $425 million to an estimated $500 million," Scheve Reardon said Tuesday, from Jefferson City.

"The cash option is now worth approximately $327 million in one payment before taxes. A new record is exciting, but we also want to remind players to play responsibly. It still just takes one ticket to win."

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