Three big jackpots up for grabs on holiday weekend

4:50 PM


It’s Friday afternoon so it must be time for a look at who won the lottery this week in North Carolina. But before we get to that, let’s recap the jackpot picture heading into the holiday weekend.

Chances are you’ve already noticed the Mega Millions jackpot is up to $173 million. The last time the Mega Millions jackpot was this big, our promotions team was at the Greensboro Coliseum for the ACC Tournament.

Carolina Cash 5 players have watched the jackpot roll eight times since Dec. 14 to $535,000 for Friday night’s drawing. Sometimes players tell us they expect winners to be from certain parts of the state; where do you predict the next Cash 5 jackpot winner will be from?

At $125 million, the Powerball jackpot is getting up there as well. It’s been rolling since the first week of November. Our offices are closed Monday and Tuesday, it will probably be Wednesday morning before we can update you about where any big-winning North Carolina tickets were sold. If one of our players hits the jackpot, we’ll probably check back with you sooner!

So, that’s what could be won this weekend. Now, who won big this week?

Heading south for the winter: after winning $1 million, a Durham man says he’ll take a tropical vacation. David Hager won instantly on a Red Hot Millions ticket. “I told my wife we were debt free,” Hager said. “It’s a good feeling. I’m pretty blessed.”

It’s good to share: Mooresville resident Madge Lippy and her friend Alton Laughman of Lancaster, PA shared a $128,895 prize. It was half of the Cash 5 jackpot from the Nov. 26 drawing.

10X the Money: Rocky Mount resident Marvin Pike is the latest player to win $100,000 on a 10X the Money ticket. As of Friday afternoon, looks like there’s still one top prize out there for the game.

Family first: Kenneth Roberts, a warehouse worker from Durham, plans to help renovate his parents’ home and travel after winning the $100,000 top prize in the lottery’s Mega Bucks game.

Our draw game winners: Since last Friday,Pick 3 players won more than $1.7 million, while 17 top prizes of $5,000 drove Pick 4 prizes of more than $715,000. Cash 5 players won more than $318,000 since last week’s update.

Our instant game winners: players have collected more than $12.9 million in instant scratch-off ticket prizes since Dec. 16. Prizes of $10,000 went to players from Boone, Burlington, Raleigh, Snow Hill and Waynesville. A Hamptonville player won $25,000 on a Cash Fireworks ticket while a trio of $30,000 wins went to scratch-off players from Fayetteville, Greensboro and Winston-Salem. A Junior Big Ol’ Bucks prize of $50,000 went to a Raeford player. And the top instant winner of the week belongs to a player from Hamlet who won $70,000 on a Sapphire Blue 7’s ticket.

Congratulations if you read this far. We wish everyone a fun, happy and safe holiday weekend. Best of luck, North Carolina, and see you next week here in the Lucke-Zone.


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On 1/12/2012 11:57, Lucke-Zone said

@ WINDOW - Some games have more tickets than others and last longer. When we talk about playing for fun or entertainment, we understand very well that people buy a lottery ticket for a chance to win. We just have a responsibility, when people are upset about not winning, that there's no guarantee of winning when you play a game of chance and its important only to spend money set aside for entertainment on lottery games.

On 1/12/2012 08:30, window said

NCEL you say the prizes on the scratch tickets are random luck, but if its really random luck why does it take 2 years or longer for all top prizes to be won? i would think random luck would have people winning top prizes on the same day in different areas, and why do you still sell tickets when all the top prizes,second place prizes, and third prizes are done a ($20 ticket comes to mind) you may call this entertainment but people as you know purchase these tickets to win.

On 1/06/2012 11:32, Lucke-Zone said

@ DERRICK - Thanks for giving us a chance to respond to your comments: 1) Our drawings are held according to extremely strict security standards and are observed by an auditor who does not work for the lottery. 2) The "Bucks" family of games, including Jumbo Bucks, are always in stores, and get reordered on a regular basis. That's why the number of prizes listed on the website is larger. Better, right? :-) 3) Information such as total prizes and odds of winning are accurate at the time the game begins, and changes continuously as tickets are purchased until the game ends... you should feel very comfortable playing the lottery in NC, we pay out about $2.4 million in prizes every day, and our practices are audited and reviewed all the time. Come watch a drawing at WRAL sometime!

On 1/06/2012 01:16, Derrick said

I believe NCEL are cheating players! here's why I say this; 1) their drawings are not handled by the host(see other states drawings like SC, VA, TX, and others. In my opinion, all legitimate.) 2) The $10 JUMBO BUCKS scratch-off tells you on the ticket what prizes are available. check NCEL website, there's almost double the prizes listed. either the ticket is incorrect or the website....Or is it some kind of mistake that the public is not aware of? 3) I'm sure NCEL have a valid reason this one. If NCEL presents a game to the public that's for sale, why do they not put the accurate info on the ticket? For example; "OVER 1,300 PRIZES". Do they know this information or not!? Put the correct number of prizes on the tickets. This may not mean anything but, I see no reason why it isn't accurate. Now, it's easy to say to me "just don't play", but, I like to have fun too. It isn't fun nor funny when you never win!! My luck wasn't this bad when I played in SC & VA.

On 1/05/2012 09:00, jesutton said

well said Panthers!!!!!

On 1/05/2012 08:20, jesutton said

They no were winning tickets are going.

On 1/04/2012 02:39, Lucke-Zone said

@ TAUGUST1970 - The new Powerball features are going into effect in every state and provence where Powerball is played.. we know that not everyone wants a $2 jackpot game with the chance to play for bigger prizes, that's why Mega Millions and Cash 5 are staying at $1 for a ticket - options for everyone!

On 1/04/2012 02:38, Lucke-Zone said

@ KAYBABY - It varies from day to day, week to week. Never know where good luck will show up.

On 1/04/2012 02:36, Lucke-Zone said

@ JIM243 - We just posted one of the Cash 5 jackpot winner stories in the "News" section of our website, and hope to have the other article up before 5pm today :-)

On 1/04/2012 02:34, Lucke-Zone said

@ RIVERS - Just a few quick facts about Red Hot Millions: we've had four winners claim $1 million prizes so far. They're from Franklin, Fayetteville, Elon, and Durham. Prizes of $50,000 on the game have been awarded to players from Rocky Mount, Randleman and Hamlet. And $5,000 prizes have been won by players from Maple Hill, Erwin and Roanoke Rapids.

On 1/04/2012 02:30, Lucke-Zone said

@ KEITHGILL - Definitely new games coming this year! We expect to post a blog this week about new games that will start appearing in stores on Tuesday :-)

On 1/04/2012 02:29, Lucke-Zone said

@ GJOYNER - Yes, Power Play will still be a part of Powerball after the changes go into effect on Jan. 15. The multiplier, however, will be replaced with set prizes for Power Play tickets; instead of $1 million for a five white ball match, Power Play tickets will win $2 million. The other Power Play match prizes will be fixed, too :-)

On 1/04/2012 02:26, Lucke-Zone said

@ JIM243 - We're still posting and responding to comments. But please keep in mind that comments made at night, on the weekends and around the holidays may take longer to be posted and/or responded to. The more popular the Lucke-Zone gets, the more there is to do, but we love the chance to exchange info with everyone :-)

On 1/04/2012 02:24, Lucke-Zone said

@ BK - We'll continue to post your comments, but we've done the best we can to respond to your questions. If you choose to play games of chance offered by the N.C. lottery, then we wish you the best of luck. If you choose not to play our games then we still wish you the best with everything.

On 1/04/2012 09:53, bkearney220 said

Lucke-Zone-You may call our opinions negative but it is the truth.You look at the winners locations and tell us we are not telling the truth.I was taught to not comment until you knew.The winners are listed---I have a drawer full of tickets and just a $1.00 winner.Show me I am wrong!!!!!Do not feel special as all sweepstakes etc.are the same.HGTV,PCH winners are from same areas every year.

On 1/04/2012 06:29, Jim243 said

What's up with Lucke-Zone? Are you not posting or answering comments anymore?

On 1/02/2012 10:33, robhdrck said

I was blessed with my luck to get an early Christmas present on 12/13/11 $1000 on Jumbo Bucks. Good luck to all who play!

On 1/02/2012 11:08, Scratchhappy said

Thank you Santa at NCEL.I won Dec 24,2011! Again December 31 and again Jan 1,2011. Its just luck of the draw. I have been playing 5 years. Also I love the new and better odds with Power Ball. I will buy the 3$ power ball with better chances of winning for all. It only takes one!!!

On 1/02/2012 11:05, gjoyner said

After January 15th, will there be a powerplay in the powerball game?

On 1/02/2012 09:47, keithgill said

any new games come this year

On 1/02/2012 07:14, Player said

wow its very sad that all the big winners are from the same area not 1 winner from southeastern nc.players spend alot of money playing the lottery i just dont understand how all the big winners are from the same area how could this happen.

On 1/01/2012 07:26, Rivers said

Don't play RED HOT---I know of 8 people who have bought at least $300 of tickets, including me, one person has bought over a $1,000 worth, none have won anything, I do not mean nothing big, I mean nothing. I believing this game is a scam and they should be audited. Also how do you find out who, if anyone, won the Christmas Visas-$200-$100 or $50. They don't list any winners names.

On 1/01/2012 04:15, Jim243 said

Happy New Year to all, especially to the two lucky Cash 5 winners! What a great way to start the year out. I wish I could be so lucky, play every day, and spend a lot of money on tickets each week, may hit a dollar or two, never anything big. Question; were the winning tickets quick picks, or hand drawn, and what town, or cities were these 2 tickets purchased? Thanks Jim

On 1/01/2012 11:30, bkearney220 said

Three Cash 5 winners from Cherryville in 2011 Jan.28-$532,550 May 6-$448,961 Nov.28-$634,650 One winner in Youngsvill in three years-$50,000

On 1/01/2012 11:12, bkearney220 said

Panthers-Tried again for the Cash 5 drawing for 12/31/11.I went all out and purchased 10 tickets for this drawing thinking I may give it one more chance ,thinking I could be wrong about the location of all winners.Let's see if I am wrong.West of Durham,East of Goldsboro.If I could play the odds of location of winners I would be rich.

On 12/31/2011 08:07, 1rock2king said

WELL said lucke-zone!!

On 12/30/2011 11:07, Kaybaby said

I agree with BK & Panthers, the BIG Winners this past week we from Raleigh and westward; Kannapolis $3 million Scratch off, Randleman, Apex, Statesville, Rockingham and Burlington. A once in a Blue Moon someone from Down East wins. Mr. Jones and his family won Big but no one lately.

On 12/30/2011 07:30, taugust1970 said

"Better odds and larger starting amount." Thats the reason for the $2 powerball price hike!!! Shame on you Powerball and NC lottery! So my only guess is you actually believe THAT WE BELIEVE that it is worth paying the extra dollar to have a 1 in 175MILLION chance of winning instead of the current 1 in 195Million! And starting it at 40million instead of 20million! You guys do know that it is above 40million at least 75% of the time anyway! We are not sheep! Remember what happened to Netflix and Bank of America? Greed

On 12/30/2011 08:14, Lucke-Zone said

@ BK + @ PANTHERS - Y'all are welcome to express your views here, including any negative opinions you have of the lottery. If you have a specific question for us we're glad to answer it, but we've already done the best we can to respond to this topic.

On 12/29/2011 07:13, panthers said

thanks b kearny,i'm not alone on the issue.maybe we can open some eyes.hopefully they may take a good look at the picture.start given more amounts then having millions to one person.I buy also in Raleigh Wakefield and Wake Forest.were in a bad section.BUT MY PLAYING DAYS MIGHT BE COMMING TO AN END.

On 12/29/2011 06:31, bkearney220 said

I KNEW IT!!!! The Cash Five drawing for 12/23/11 the winners are from the same old areas.There is not a thing random about these tickets/drawings when the winners are from the same place or around these areas over and over.I would be ashamed to keep telling people that everyone has the same chance but the winners are from same ole areas.STOP---Just say you don't know and you will stop looking like an-------------

On 12/29/2011 02:13, bkearney220 said

I have three differant stores I go to.Raleigh,Wake Forest and Youngsville.I purchase powerball,Mega Million,Cash Five and $1.00 to $10.00 scratch offs.I have been doing this for over 4 years,have won $1.00 and I always ask the owners have they had any of the larger winners and the answer is always,NO!.It is like I said,the winners are fron the same or around the same areas.It is like someone is minapulating the #'s drawn or where the winning tickets are going.

On 12/28/2011 08:33, panthers said

You say randomly distribute.Well it seems that the stores I buy tickets at hasn't seen a big winner in some time.I talk to people who feel the same as I do.Where ever the commission wants to give the tickets out go there.I spend a lot of money on tickets and the biggest win I had was 20 bucks,there is some thing wrong with the picture.Any one else !!!!

On 12/28/2011 04:16, Lucke-Zone said

@ IBSENK - The odds of winning playing draw games such as Cash 5, Powerball or Mega Millions do not change day to day, no matter how often you have played before in the past. A set of numbers for any draw game has an equal chance of being drawn for an independent random drawing, regardless of past or future draw results.

On 12/28/2011 04:02, Lucke-Zone said

@ PANTHERS - The only way to be fair to everyone is to randomly distributed winning tickets for a particular game throughout the entire printing run of the game. That's the only way to make sure that anytime someone buys a ticket they've got the same chance as everyone else

On 12/28/2011 04:00, Lucke-Zone said

@ JESUTTON - We have to be fair to all our players in every part of the state. That means that big winning tickets are randomly distributed, could show up anywhere, anytime.

On 12/28/2011 01:02, Lucke-Zone said

@ JUWANWON - Since you were there and we were not, we can't say for sure what happened. Our advice is to call our player hotline and explain what you saw. Thank you for posting this, we want to make sure that if you won a prize, you get your winnings.

On 12/27/2011 11:01, juanwon said

Yesterday I purchased 3 Sterling Sliver scratch offs and won $12 from 2 of the tickets. I went back in the store to cash them in and the machine said the tickets were not validated. The clerk called her manager and he said I would have to come back the next day after he talked to the lottery headquarters to have the problem fixed. Has anyone every heard of this happening? To top it off, the clerk after scanning my first ticket immediately ripped it into before she recognized there was a problem. She taped it together with scotch tape. I will return to the store today to see what happens.

On 12/26/2011 11:01, jesutton said


On 12/26/2011 07:25, panthers said

Scratch tickets a winner ever 3.5 tickets I bought 5 tickets In a row and got zero.How do they come up with a winner in those amt of tickets? The sales clerk say's no big winners in his store.

On 12/25/2011 09:38, Lucke-Zone said

@ PANTHERS - We know players like a range of games, that's why we have scratch-offs for $1, $2 or $3 that have top prizes more like what you're describing

On 12/25/2011 09:37, Lucke-Zone said

@ PLAYER - Whoa, congratulations!

On 12/25/2011 07:26, panthers said


On 12/24/2011 05:49, Player said

I got a early CHRISTMAS present on 12-22-11 $1000.00 (carolina gold)

On 12/24/2011 12:31, nawlins said

i need to win this is crazy. no jobs, no money, i need to hit a lick.

On 12/24/2011 11:40, bkearney220 said

I cannot wait to see who won the Cash 5 12/23/2011.I bet every penny I have that the winners are in the same ole locations(I have only two pennies)If I were yto be lucky enough to win I would move out of NC

On 12/24/2011 11:30, LOTTOKING said

Merry "Krissmuss" Lucke-Zone ! and also to all of the lotto players .... :)

On 12/24/2011 08:39, ibsenk said

I would love to know the odds of winning if you have played the exact same set of numbers in the Cash 5, MegaBall and PowerBall every day without fail since May 1, 2010. What are the odds of actually winning one of the major prizes by consistently playing this way.

On 12/24/2011 01:58, franklin said

Thank You I won!!!!!!!!

On 12/24/2011 01:11, Maria said

Wow maybe this will help me win Cuz I play all the time and never been lucky Just hope I can win I don't want to be rich I just Want to pay my bills since my unemployment Check I barely make it by. Thank you for giving people lime me A second chance to get lucky some other way.

On 12/24/2011 12:25, RF101POKADOT45thTRS said

I have a Scratch Game that solves the problem of low, slow or no sales of tickets, when all the big prizes are have been given out. Interested??????????????????

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