Some stores around Catawba County are seeing increases in lottery ticket sales in light of large Powerball and Mega Millions jackpots.
The $730 million Powerball jackpot has already been claimed in Maryland but the Mega Millions prize, which is estimated around $1 billion, was still up for grabs. The next drawing was set for Friday night.
“The only thing I can say is that North Carolina lottery’s terminals cannot keep up with the demand,” said Michelle James, a supervisor at the Propst convenience store on Startown Road.
She said people have purchased as many as 100 Mega Millions tickets earlier this week.
James also said several companies had come in to buy tickets as a group with the intent of splitting winnings with those who contributed to buy the tickets.
Lincolnton resident Tony Parker, 58, was among those who came to the Startown Propst store Friday afternoon to buy some Mega Millions tickets.
“I’m always feeling lucky,” Parker said. He said he would use winnings to pay off his house.
Kathy Russo, a manager of the Propst store on N.C. 10 in Newton, said the store saw a lot of foot traffic and excitement as a result of the large jackpots.
Russo said she has heard a number of people describe what they would do if they won.
“The common thread of course is that they would take care of their family and go on some big trips,” Russo said. “Some of them say they wouldn’t live a whole lot different; they just would have security. I don’t think people can always fathom how much money that really is.”
Kevin Griffin is the City of Hickory reporter at the Hickory Daily Record.