Oklahoma Lottery Launches Powerball
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – January 13, 2006 – Electricity and excitement are building to a crescendo for tomorrow night’s Powerball drawing, the first such drawing involving ticket sales from Oklahoma Lottery players. Saturday’s jackpot is estimated at $76 million.
First-day Powerball sales were $412,697, of which $76,230, or 18.47% of total Powerball sales, were the result of players purchasing the Power Play option. Oklahoma’s newest online lottery game costs $1 for a single play for one drawing. For an extra dollar per play, players can choose the Power Play option for a chance to multiply their Powerball winning prizes by 2, 3, 4, or 5 times the original amount. The Power Play multiplier does not apply to the jackpot amount.
“We are quite pleased with first-day sales of Powerball and are confident sales will go higher today and tomorrow as we get closer to the actual drawing. The correlation between increased levels of purchasing activity associated with this game and the drawing time is consistent with what we see in other Powerball states,” said Jim Scroggins, executive director of the Oklahoma Lottery. “We were also pleased to see that sales for our Pick 3 game on Thursday were not negatively impacted
Players can purchase their Powerball tickets at lottery-contracted retail locations throughout the state until 7:59 p.m. (CST) Saturday. Powerball drawings are held every Wednesday and Saturday at 9:59 p.m. (CST).
According to lottery officials, some retailers were unable to sell Powerball tickets at the first available opportunity on Thursday morning. “When we introduce new on-line games, the computerized lottery terminals require new software. A series of Powerball downloads was done over the last several days,” explained Scroggins. “Some retailers may have turned off their lottery terminals during that time and thus did not receive the complete software. As a result, these retailers were unable to sell Powerball tickets until they signed on their terminals and took the necessary download, a process that takes a couple of hours.”
Tomorrow night’s Powerball jackpot is not the only reason for the added excitement. The January 14 drawing will be conducted at the International Finals Rodeo at State Fair Park in Oklahoma City. The national host of the Powerball drawings as well as representatives from the Multi-State Lottery Association (MUSL) will be in attendance. Powerball drawings are typically held in West Des Moines, Iowa, where MUSL is based.
“If you think you’ve seen high-intensity, high-energy kicking at a rodeo event, just imagine what you’ll see if one of our players wins the Powerball jackpot and is in the crowd at Saturday’s rodeo finals when the winning numbers are announced,” said Scroggins.
Although mega-jackpots are the key reason players are attracted to America’s best known and most popular online lottery game, Powerball also offers players opportunities to win one of eight other cash prizes, ranging from $3 to $200,000, and, if the player has selected Power Play, those amounts can be multiplied by 2, 3, 4 or 5 times (excluding the jackpot). Overall odds of winning a prize in the game are about 1 in 37.
“We strongly encourage our players to carefully check their tickets after every drawing because even when there are no jackpot winners, there are still thousands and thousands of winners at the other prize levels in each drawing,” said Scroggins.
Players win by choosing and matching balls from two separate drawing drums. In the first drum, there are 55 white balls, numbered 1 to 55. A second drum is filled with red balls, numbered 1 to 42. Players can win one of nine different prizes by selecting five numbers, each from 1 to 55, plus a sixth number from 1 to 42 – the Powerball. The jackpot is won by matching all five white balls in any order and the red Powerball. If no one matches all six numbers, the jackpot continues to grow. Players choosing the Power Play option must do so at the time they buy their Powerball tickets, and then the ticket must match one of the
non-jackpot prizes before the multiplier takes effect.
Powerball drawings will be telecast live on the lottery’s drawing stations – KOKH-Fox and KOCB-WB in Oklahoma City, and on KWBT-WB in Tulsa. Results are also available immediately after each drawing on the lottery’s official website at www.lottery.ok.gov. Additionally, the numbers are distributed to the media for television and radio broadcast as well as printed daily in newspapers throughout the state.
In its nearly 14-year history, Powerball has become a household name on a global scale. In FY05, the 29 member lotteries sold more than $2 billion in Powerball tickets, which helped generate more than $600 million for worthwhile beneficiary projects and programs.
For more information please visit the Oklahoma Lottery Commission website at www.lottery.ok.gov, or contact Marisa Schrieber, Jordan Associates PR Specialist, at 405.840.3201.