Mega Millions jackpot worth $355 million

Jan 4 2011 - 4:50pm

LITTLEFIELD, Ariz. -- A few weeks ago it was devastating floods that hit tiny Littlefield, but this week it's hundreds of people pouring into the northwest Arizona town to buy tickets in hopes of winning the $355 million jackpot in the Mega Millions lottery game.

"We got a pretty good, steady flow of traffic as far as buying the tickets goes," said Bill Evans, owner of Beaver Dam Service Station.

Littlefield and the nearby community of Beaver Dam near the Nevada state line were rocked with floodwaters two weeks ago. Six homes were destroyed, and another dozen suffered substantial damage in the Beaver Dam Resort area.

Ticket sales are brisk in northwestern Arizona in part because of visitors from Utah and Nevada that don't have Mega Millions.

"I would expect in an hour or so it will be jam-packed in here," Evans said. "As the day progresses we'll have a line out the door, I'm sure."

At Rosie's Cafe on U.S. 93 north of Kingman near the Nevada line, hundreds drove in over the weekend to buy tickets for the Mega Millions game, and it could be a repeat Tuesday because of the new Hoover Dam bypass.

"It's zip in, zip out. Everybody's happy and content with that," said Christine Millim, a waitress and cashier.

People apparently don't mind standing in line for a chance at $355 million and a cash option estimated at a staggering $224 million.

"The line was going out the door," Millim said, estimating "500 or more" people bought tickets over the weekend.

Tuesday's $355 million jackpot is the second largest in Mega Millions history, according to Arizona Lottery spokeswoman Cindy Esquer. The largest jackpot was $390 million in March 2007, Esquer said.

The Mega Millions game is similar to Powerball -- players try to win by matching five regular numbers plus the "Mega ball." Tickets cost $1.

Besides the jackpot, prizes range from $2 to $250,000. Drawings are held every Tuesday and Friday night.

The game, which expanded last year under a cross-selling agreement with Powerball, is available in 41 states and the District of Columbia.



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