NASHVILLE - From a mid-state cattle farmer who won $1 million by simply scratching a ticket to an Antioch woman who plans to continue clipping coupons even after her $250,000 win, the Tennessee Lottery closed out 2011 with more than 132 players winning $100,000 or more, including 16 winning tickets of $1 million or more.
“It has been a wonderful year for our players. Lots of big wins and record-breaking returns for the education programs the Lottery funds,” said Rebecca Hargrove, President and CEO. “It looks like that trend is continuing as the New Year has already started off with a bang!”
It’s true. So far, by midday on Tuesday, Jan. 3, three winners claimed six-figure prizes, while a $1 million Powerball prize won by a Memphis player on Christmas Eve remains unclaimed. Those add to the over 132 players who won $100,000 or more during 2011.
In this past fiscal year, the Tennessee Education Lottery Corporation set new records, announcing an all-time high transfer of $293.5 million to education programs in the state, an increase of $4.6 million over the previous record set last year. The Lottery also reported a record-breaking $1.19 billion in total sales, which was a 4.2 percent increase over the previous year.
Since the Lottery began ticket sales on Jan. 20, 2004, players have won more than $4.9 billion in prizes. Education programs have been funded to the tune of $2.16 billion.
“Our mission is to support education funding for Tennessee students and families,” said Hargrove. “But what many people don’t realize is how much our players benefit, as well.”
One such beneficiary is Art Baker of Buffalo Valley, who says he “knew that someday he would hit big” playing Tennessee Lottery games. Mr. Baker, who owns a cattle farm, won $1 million by playing the Lottery’s instant game, $1,000,000 Casino. “I’ve got plenty of use for this!” he told Lottery officials when he claimed his prize in August.
Paige Barton-Cantrell of Antioch, who won $250,000 from the Mega Millions drawing held on July 15, was another lucky player who was thrilled with her win. According to Mrs. Barton-Cantrell, her husband was surprised to see her still clipping coupons after the big win. "That's how I'm going to save this money!" she said.
For a look at just a handful of the Lottery’s winners, visit the Winners Spotlight section of our website at http://www.tnlottery.com/winners/default.aspx
About the Tennessee Education Lottery
The Tennessee Education Lottery Corporation operates entirely from the revenue it generates through the sale of its products. Net proceeds from sales of Lottery tickets, currently averaging over $5 million per week, fund specific education programs, including college scholarships and after-school programs.
Since the Lottery began selling tickets on Jan. 20, 2004, it has raised more than $2.16 billion for these programs. In addition to the educational beneficiaries, players have won over $4.9 billion in prizes and Lottery retailer partners have earned over $535 million in retailer commissions.
For more information, please visit www.tnlottery.com. For information about Lottery-funded scholarships, visit www.collegepaystn.com. To see a county-by-county breakdown of the number of students who benefit, visit www.seehowitaddsup.com.
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