News From Terre Haute, Indiana

November 28, 2012

Free tickets for 500

Staff Report
The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — Free Powerball tickets from the Hoosier Lottery were a hit early today at the Thornton’s gas station on South Third Street near Davis Drive.

Many customers entering the store accepted the free tickets handed out by two lottery employees. And several people continued to the check-out counter to buy additional chances at winning the Powerball jackpot, estimated at $500 million for Wednesday’s drawing.

“I don’t know what I’ll do with it if I win, but we’ll see,” said one customer, who declined to be identified to the Tribune-Star.

Another anonymous customer, who denied that he was following a Gamblers Anonymous practice of remaining anonymous, said he has played the lottery for a long time, and buys tickets at Thornton’s twice a week to pick his special numbers.

Another customer, who gave his name as “Mike”, said he heard about the free ticket giveaway and visited the store early to pick up another chance at winning.

“I’ve already bought more,” he said.

Lottery representatives said about 15 people were lined up at the store when the free ticket giveaway began at 6 a.m. But after that, the tickets were handed out as customers passed through.

The tickets, printed out Tuesday at an Indianapolis lottery location, numbered 500. They were expected to be passed into the hands of 500 hopeful jackpot winners by 8 a.m.

The free ticket giveaway has become a practice of the Hoosier Lottery to boost participation when the jackpot reaches an unusually high level. The current jackpot is the second-highest in the history of the multi-state lottery.

The odds of winning Wednesday’s Powerball jackpot are estimated at 175 million-to-1.